It's a tension filled weekend for Tommy Lynley when he and Helen go the family estate to hold their engagement party. Tommy is estranged from his mother owing to the time he found her in bed with their family physician, Dr. Trenarrow, while his father was dying of cancer in the next room. He's on less than good terms as well with his brother Peter who feels that Tommy abandoned him when their father died. When Mick Cambrey is found dead in his shop in the village, the police arrest his father-in-law John Penellin, the Lynleys long-time estate manager. Lynley and Havers soon determine that the death is related to drug smuggling. When one of the weekend guests, Justin Brooke, is found dead on the estate, they realize something other than heroin was being smuggled.
Did You Know?
When Peter proposes the toast he calls Helen "The face that launched a thousand... etc." The quotation is from Christopher Marlowe
's play Doctor Faustus, and refers to Helen of Troy as "The face that launched a thousand ships, and burned the topless towers of Ilium." See more
When the murderer commits suicide by injecting strychnine, he/she dies within a few minutes and remains quite calm, just keeling over at the desk. In reality, strychnine poisoning causes violent spasms and the backbone to arch continually within ten or twenty minutes. The body would also show signs of great trauma. See more