Fourteen-year-old Pierre's mother is dead, and he came a long way to his present life in Camden. Pierre hasn't seen his grandmother, Missy, since he left the family flat in Brussels' African quarter. She had travelled further than the boy—from Zaire, along with a stack of potions, voodoo recipes, and the means to cast a long-distance hex. Ashley Cochrane taught Pierre English, and he thought the boy harmless enough when term started. Unknown to them both, however, Ashley's ties with Pierre's family go back a long way—and they are bloody.