Banff, Scotland, 1626. The body of the apothecary’s apprentice is found in Alexander Seaton’s schoolhouse, murdered by poisoning. Seaton is a schoolmaster by default, a disgraced would-be minister whose love affair with an aristocrat’s daughter left him dishonoured and deprived of his vocation. Persona non grata in the town, he has few friends, so, when one of them is accused of the murder, he sets out to solve the crime. He embarks on a journey that will uncover witchcraft, cruelty, prejudice and the darkness in men’s souls. It is also a personal quest that will lead Alexander to the rediscovery of his own faith in God as well as his belief in himself.