Jane Austen is enjoying a summer visit to Derbyshire's craggy peaks, sparkling streams, and cavernous gorges. But there, amid scenes of unsurpassed beauty, she stumbles upon the ugliest slaughter she has ever seen. High in the rocks near the town of Bakewell lies the body of a young gentleman. With blond curls and delicate features, the victim has the face of an angel - yet Jane can see that he had been shot in the forehead and savagely mutilated." "But even more shocking is the revelation gleaned from the surgeon's examination: the deceased is in fact a woman - a maidservant clad in the garb of her master, Mr. Charles Danforth of Penfolds Hall. Tess Arnold had been in charge of the stillroom at Penfolds for many years and was known as an adept preserver of produce and compounder of home remedies - until, it seems, she was dismissed for a scandalous indiscretion."