Fifteen seventy-four, Devon. With Hugo and Maria finally wed and a strong line of Kendal heirs on their way, the Heron family have reached a prosperous point in their history. But when a deadly plague breaks out, their happy existence is threatened, and disaster creeps into the household when Alan Kendal’s wife, Harriet, is taken ill.
With the Kendal heir now both wifeless and childless, Hugo and Maria insist upon arranging a new match. The beautiful Eloise sweeps into the family as the bride-to-be and immediately causes a stir. Thriving on the attention and unwilling to be tamed, Eloise captures the heart of both Alan and Martin Kendal, sullying the relationship of the brothers. A bitter rivalry starts.