Havoc, in Its Third Year : England in the 1630s - a time of change and turmoil, teeming with fearful rumors of invasion and conspiracy. On a winter's day, when rain and wind rage round his lonely farmhouse, coroner John Brigge is called to investigate an Irishwoman accused of murdering her baby. The town's powerful Puritan faction insists on the woman's guilt, but a vital witness has disappeared, and Brigge, hugging a secret of his own, senses that something is being kept hidden. With his wife pregnant, he wishes for nothing more than to stay quietly with her on his farm. Yet listening to the demands of a hanging without delay, Brigge can't refuse to take his next step. Reluctantly, he sets out to search for the missing witness.