A murdered servant girl is found in the palace of King Herod Antipas. The prefect, Pontius Pilate, is in attendance. The populace has already been buzzing over the brutal death of one of their prophets, John, known familiarly as the Baptizer, and scandal is in the air.
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The year is AD 29, and Jerusalem chafes under the Roman Empire’s continued presence and oppressive rule. In spite of that unpleasant fact, life goes on—but not for everyone. People die, some because it is their time, others by misadventure. One death in particular brings the city’s daily routine to a halt. A badly burned body is found behind the veil of the holy of holies—the temple’s inner sanctum and the most sacred space on earth for the Jews.