Oncologist Brannigan Ryan is used to people falling for him. With his black-Irish good looks and easy bedside manner, he's a favorite among patients. Surrounded by death on a daily basis, however, Bran has learned to harden his heart quite effectively. That is until he starts treating Ian Fitzgerald.
Michael St. James hates tidewater post-Colonial Virginia with a passion. Banished there thanks to an ill-timed duel, Michael is bored with the countryside, and thinks his new companions are poorly-educated boors. What he needs is a challenge, something to stimulate his mind. Which is why, when Michael meets Daniel Calhoun, he takes such an immediate interest.