July, 1585. Desperate to escape Sir Francis Walsingham's clutches and pursue his chosen career as a professional playwright, the young Christopher Marlowe abandons his Cambridge studies to join Lord Strange's men, a group of travelling players. En route to perform at Oxford, the players are rehearsing amongst the famous Rollright Stones on the Warwickshire border when their efforts are interrupted by the discovery of the corpse of actor-manager Ned Sledd, found beneath the King's Stone, a silver-handled bodkin buried deep in his throat. Is it an act of witchcraft, a human sacrifice to mark the witches' festival of Lammastide? Or could the killer have a more personal reason to wish Sledd dead? Kit Marlowe determines to find out.