Reclusive collector Cutter Merlin is seldom seen in Key West, and lately, not at all. Officer Liam Beckett visits Merlin's curious house and discovers the gentleman in his study. In his death grip: a volume of occult lore and a reliquary. His eyes are wide with fright, his mouth a horrified rictus where spiders now dwell. Kelsey Donovan returns to the old house to catalog her estranged grandfather's collection of artifacts and antiquities, vowing to see his treasures divested properly.