Denton, 1981. Britain is in recession, the IRA is becoming increasingly active and the country's on alert for an outbreak of rabies. Detective Sergeant Jack Frost is working under his mentor, DI Bert Williams, and coping badly with his increasingly strained marriage. Superintendent Stanley Mullett has been at Denton for only six months and is desperately trying to restore order within the chronically depleted ranks, while refurbishing the dilapidated Eagle Lane HQ. But DI Williams is nowhere to be seen, and DI Allen has failed to return from his walking holiday. So when a twelve-year-old girl goes missing from a department-store changing room, Mullett has no option but to put DS Frost in charge of the investigation.