With DCI Carol Jordan in the hospital after being mugged and struck by a car, psychologist Tony Hill assists the police in cases of missing children. The profile in this case is odd. The children are being abducted and held for several days before being killed, but the children are not sexually molested. The children all come from either broken or abusive homes and it is apparent that the killer either knew them or had access to information about them. In all cases, the children were induced to run away. As they research the case, the police realize that these murders have a long history and involve many children.