Refuge, New Hampshire, is a small town. The kind found on postcards. Their biggest concern is the rowdy summertime revelers making their way up from Massachusetts and New York. And with most of the town's residents in neighboring Ashland, for the Fourth of July fireworks show, Refuge is quieter than usual. That is, until the Baptist church's bell starts ringing - on its own. The bell chimes faster and faster, reaching a frenetic pace, as though rung by the Devil himself. But the bell is just the beginning.
"I am still not so sure about this one..."
Newspaper man Joe Henry finds himself the primary suspect when his friend, fellow reporter Wynton Gresham, is murdered. Both were veterans of French battles during WWI - the war that was supposed to end all wars.
Barnes, the supervisor of a Hot Shot wildfire suppression crew, is haunted by the season past, when many members of his dedicated, young team were killed in a Colorado forest fire that went all wrong, scorching the Hot Shots as they fled, some as they struggled into their fire shelters. He wakes each morning in the presence of their ghosts as they proceed across his bedroom or assemble at his kitchen table, their eyes asking questions that he cannot answer.