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Now Vicar of St. Edwold's in Nether Monkslip, former spy Max Tudor is working on a sermon about Bathsheba when news comes that Lady Duxter has been found in a suicide pact with her young lover. Lord Duxter rallies quickly ? too quickly, it's murmured in the village. Having offered the manor house for a writers' retreat, he insists the show must go on. But when a young girl goes missing and a crime writer is targeted, DCI Cotton asks Max to lend his MI5 expertise.