Brander Hansen and his wife Regin returned to her bankrupt ancestral estate in Hamar, Norway determined to set crime investigations aside and focus on restoring the manor to its former glory. But when Brander takes a sledge hammer to a recently added wall, he finds a chest wedged behind it - and in the chest, a dead body.
It seems Regin's first husband was a murderer, and she has been living with the grisly remains for the last three years. Horrified, she escapes to their house in Christiania, wondering if she will ever feel comfortable in her beloved childhood home again.
In spite of their earlier resolve, both Brander and Regin are compelled to discover who the victim was, why he was killed, and how he ended up buried inside her wall.