In this, Book II of the Hawkenlye Trilogy, the Abbess Helewise takes on another strange case with her French partner, Josse d'Acquin. A lumberjack in the Wealken forest has been found dead. The locals would have it that the mythical Forest People are to blame for his violent end. But when the Abbess Helewise steps in to investigate, she thinks a supernatural solution too easy an answer. She consults her friend Josse d'Acquin, a French soldier of fortune who has helped her many a time. He, concerned about the safety of the abbey, ventures into the forest himself, only to find in this so-called haunted wood something that terrifies even him. Now the two must reconcile superstition with their better judgement.