It is winter in York, at the dawn of the 15th century, and King Henry IV must defend his throne against supporters of Richard II. Kate Clifford's cook and confidante, Berend, disappears, and when he returns wounded, he denies any connection to the uprising. But in this third outing (after A Twisted Vengeance), when Berend is accused of murdering a spice seller, Kate discovers a chest of jewels in his possession. Some of these treasures belong to her old friend Lady Margery, wanted by the king for her husband's part in the attempted coup. Kate wants to believe Berend's innocence, but she will have a lot of work to do if she is to prove it.