Its picturesque fields of Queen Anne's lace, bachelor buttons, and even an occasional rusting disc harrow thrown in for good measure, were deemed superb examples of pastoral serenity by virtually every motorist who had passed through Gossett Mills. The residents of this small town, nestled among the orchards and rolling hillsides of central Massachusetts, relished their unaffected if bland lifestyle, and harbored desires to change it. However, being unaware that change is the only true constant in anyone's life, they were at a loss as to what to do when confronted with the prospect that a pernicious criminal element may have surreptitiously infiltrated their community. It all starts with a photo in The Dobson's Creek Dispatch showing Jethro Clayton, the town manager, and Molly Simms, a retiring elderly resident, lying face down in a leaching field adjacent to the waste treatment plant. The murder scene, cordoned off by yellow and black crime scene tape, is most unnerving for the townsfolk to behold, and is made all the more so by Police Chief Mathew Harvey's puzzled expression as he stands eyeing the two corpses with his hat in one hand and scratching his baldpate with the other.