In 1920 the Burton-Masseys lost their home, Pendleton Grange, their lands and several businesses in the heart of Bolton, including Massey's Yort. Reduced to a life of hardship, Alex Burton-Massey's widow and daughters took refuge in Caldwell Farm, all that was left of their former wealth. James Mulligan was the man who now owned their lands, and Massey's Yort quickly became known as Mulligan's Yard. He was a silent, brooding character whose manners teetered on the brink of rudeness, but in spite of this, many women found him attractive. Who was he? Did he hide a dark secret in the cellars of Pendleton Grange? And why did he involve himself so deeply in the lives of the Burton-Massey girls?