New Year's Eve and the final murder scene of Virginia's bloodiest year takes Scarpetta thirty feet below the Elizabeth River's icy surface. A diver is dead. Ted Eddings, an investigative reporter who was a favourite at the Medical Examiner's office. Was Eddings probing the frigid depths for a story, or simply diving for sunken trinkets? And why did Scarpetta receive a phone call reporting the death before the police were notified?