The dashing and raffish Justin, Marquis of Veryan awakes from a drunken sleep to the appalling realisation that in the throes of passion he has proposed marriage to renowned Society beauty Lady Rose Caterham. Worse, still, she accepted and will soon be spreading word of their 'engagement like wildfire throughout the Beau Monde. Fleeing to his country house on the South coast with his close friend Sir Anthony Derville, he plans to enjoy some peace and quiet well away from the hullaballoo that is sure to ensue. But no sooner than he arrives, he is robbed in his own dining room by a masked highwayman! Immediately concerned for his neighbour, Ivana Wadebridge, despite his own father s long-standing feud with her family, he visits her to ensure that she is safe and finds himself fascinated by her demure beauty. And then he stumbles upon a maze of danger, deceit and mystery in which his family treasures, and ultimately his heart, are stolen.