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Poppy Gore, a local realtor, discovers the body of a client she had met only once lying on the floor of an isolated cabin on a West Virginia mountaintop with four bullet holes in his chest. Sheriff Billy Jones calls on a fellow law professional, the Chief of the Fairfax Police, who assigns Lieutenant Chase Mansfield of the Criminal Investigations Bureau to the case. The investigation begins with the eccentric Scott family, a clan at war with itself. Mary Scott, the family matriarch, points a finger at Barbara, the tearless widow, and demands that Mansfield “arrest the bitch.” Barbara indifferently explains that she and Dred Scott, the victim, were legally separated. She denies knowing that Scott had owned a mountain cabin and offers a solid alibi affirmed by a companion, a Russian diplomat with a FBI tail. Before Lieutenant Mansfield can identify the killer, Dred’s brother Clayton Scott is murdered in his Fairfax home. High-level corruption, corporate conspiracy, political warfare, and the bitter disintegration of a prominent family greatly complicate the investigation.

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