This is the fictional account of a Russian criminal fleeing Moscow and seeking to kill the agent, w retired and living in London, who had fist reported on his illicit activities. The London diplomat is tipped-off by his former colleague, residing in Moscow, of the criminal's intentions. In the west highlands of Scotland an elderly man on holiday with his wife dies in his hotel room. This is a fairly common event and police officer Andrew Fleming attends, expecting thing sinister. He soon suspects that the identity given by the wife for her husband and herself is false. The body is then stolen prior to post-mortem. The widow is herself abducted and murdered as she attempts to return home. Fleming is told to drop his interest as the case has serious and political overtones. As usual he igres these instructions and works on what he can lerarn at the Corran Bay end of the enquiry. The Moscow colleague, w also ill-informed on the welfare of his friends, travels to Britain to make his own enquiries. Fleming's persistence pays off eventually.