Banff, Scotland in the 1620s. A young man walks unsteadily through the streets. Is he just drunk or is there something more sinister happening? When he collapses in front of two sisters on that dark, wet night, the women guess that he's been poisoned. His body is discovered in the house of Alexander Seaton - a fallen minister, the discovery of whose clandestine love affair has left him disgraced. Why was the body in Seaton's house? And why would anyone want to murder this likeable young man? Seaton sets out to find answers, embarking on a journey not only through the darkest part of other men's souls, but also his own.