Young Frederick Musgrave was never more agile than when navigating his sculler across the waters of the Tyne between the busy seaports of North and South Shields in 1843. Already his services were in demand as a carrier of messages and certain small packages for those whose activities made them the target of the Customs and Excise men. As well as agile, Freddie was also reckoned to be lucky, but on such a night as brought him to The Towers, the home of Mr Roderick Gallagher, both luck and courage were to be tested to the limit. From that night on, things really began to happen to Freddie, and the best of them came when he gained the friendship and patronage of Miss Maggie Hewitt, who was to play a major role in shaping his life and fortunes. But he would still need all his luck and resourcefulness to escape the long shadow cast by Roderick Gallagher, whose power and influence threatened all who crossed his path ...