The year is 1760. Sent to London as an emissary to the Crown, Benjamin Franklin intends only to spend time with his natural son, Nick Handy, and practice his experiments with electricity. His skills as a detective are well known, however, and he soon finds himself embroiled in a perilous web of murder and intrigue. John Fielding, the chief magistrate of Westminster, summons Franklin to a rainy mews one stormy November night. An aristocratic young woman lies dead on the cobblestones, her heart brutally carved from her chest. The killer has left an intriguing clue: an ancient coin tossed casually by her side, bearing the words "Do what you will" in Latin. A trail of clues leads Franklin from the grand houses of St. James Square to the gin mills of the Fleet and the university town of Oxford, where a fraternity of drunken young lords commits street crimes for sport. Headquartered at an estate in the hills, the Dionysus Club revels in drunken debauchery - but are its members responsible for a string of brutal murders?