Gus Salt never wanted to be sheriff of Harr County, North Carolina. He had planned to study with a famous writer at Harvard College and become a writer himself. Then Pearl Harbor happened, and Gus, deferred from service because of a lazy thyroid, was nearly the only able-bodied man available for law enforcement. Now, fifteen years later, a weary Gus is ready to retire. A new man is ready to take over, but first Gus must determine if the drowning of the local Episcopal minister was accidental and if Blossom Hall, a young woman in love with Gus, had anything to with it. And who is the old woman who appears and disappears, and what has she to do with the minister’s death? The past is about to catch up with everyone, Gus included.