Jessica visits a rural revival of a play she was in with her late husband Frank and present stars Julian Lord and Maggie Tarrow. On opening night, something scares Maggie out of performing, and her understudy Barbara Bennington is killed by cyanide poisoning of her red wine on stage. Local chief of police Merton P. Drock, who plays the butler, never solved a real murder, but trusts Jessica will provide him with the 'script', yet keeps on making precipitous conclusions and accusations as the links appear with the breaking off of the productions 30 years ago, when Maggie took a year off by ruse, as now appears to give birth in secret, plausibly to fake reporter T.J. Holt. Julian prevents a second cyanide killing which would murder Maggie. Who knew and resented what exactly?