When Lisa Johnson is kidnapped by two men wearing balaclavas, PC Maria Jackson is also taken when she tries to intervene. Johnson was a student at the local arts centre and was having an affair with the centre's deputy director, Visha Iqbal who is found murdered the next day. Lisa's parents have been trying to raise the ransom by liquidating their assets but have not told the police. The murders multiply when another teacher is killed as is the head of a local museum. The police realize that both jealousy and a scam to sell forged art work are at the centre of the plot.