Philomena ‘Phil’ Byrnes and her husband Peter ran the Byrnes Private Investigation company in Seattle, Washington; until Peter was murdered at his desk late one night. While keeping the company alive, Phil has been slowly gathering information to try and figure out who killed him. One night she, her business associate Buzzy and their close friend Seattle Police Detective Coleman, go up to Phil's cabin in the San Juan Islands to comb through the information and finally bring the killer to justice.
In 1890's London the highest paid private detective is a woman - Rebecca Bowen. After the untimely death of her husband, Lady Montbury holds a series of séances. Unfortunately the spiritual communication she's looking for isn't what she's expecting. The creature that has taken up residence in the manor is described as being like a cage full of fluttering birds. It is accompanied by an overpowering, putrid smell reminiscent of an open grave.