Set in 1795, a year since Lord Roland Stratton left Cornwall for France to undertake a secret mission for the British government. When her father is felled by a stroke brought on by desperate financial problems, Melissa Tregonning has to try to keep the family boatyard running and pay off his debts. Determined to protect his reputation, she must keep his plight and her efforts a secret, even from her family. She is helped by a mysterious stranger discovered living in woods on her father's land. But who is he? Why does he seek solitude? And what - or who - caused his terrible wounds? Attraction neither dare acknowledge deepens into love. But dark secrets threaten to part them forever, until Melissa's courage leads to a revelation that changes everything.