The Sloan receives a request for an advance against a trust that does not permit it. John Putnam Thatcher gets involved by one heir, Arthur Schneider, President of Schneider Manufacturing, and grandson of the founder who left a trust for his grandchildren upon the death of all of their parents. The last parent is about to die from natural causes. One heir is missing and Thatcher, Trinkam, and Nicholls, all Emma Lathen regulars work to find the missing heir. Soon they learn a murder is involved and it takes Thatcher to unravel the Gordian knot. Emma Lathen at her best.