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In an isolated rural cemetery a grave robber witnesses a woman's lonely death and adds the hands of a suicide to his sack of treasure. On that day Keller Stoneking is released from a federal prison after completing a thirty-year sentence for bank robbery and kidnapping. He just wants to come home to Wychelm and be with his cousin Maddie, the only constant in his life. Maddie welcomes Keller home and tries to ease him back into small town life. Their reunion is complicated by her growing rapport with Ross Glendower, the chief of police. Ross finds himself in the curious position of defending the ex-convict from his vengeful neighbors, even as he tries to investigate the crime so many of them attribute to Keller. Neither man realizes how difficult it will be to possess Maddie Stoneking, or protect her from the casual evil she encounters working at the private mental hospital where two men who know evil very well take an interest in her for very different reasons.