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A sadistic bully is found dead. Six children are suspects. The teacher protecting them must confront her own dark past as a determined detective pushes to identify the killer.
Mary Austin is the kind of teacher that parents adore and children wish for. Firm and compassionate, a guiding light in their lives, she would do anything to protect her students.
But that loyalty is tested when the school's sadistic bully is found dead on campus, and suspicion falls on six children in her class. None willing to talk. To point the finger.
To reveal the killer.
Faced with this, Mary finds herself confronted with dark memories from her own childhood. Fragmentary flashes from the past that test the bounds of her reality, the onslaught worsening when a tenacious detective is brought in to close the case.
On loan from the Seattle Police Department, Detective Dooley Ashe is plagued by his own demons, but focuses on breaking through the wall of silence the children have erected. Up against a town indifferent toward the crime and suspects virtually untouchable by the law, Dooley turns to Mary as an avenue to the truth.
As an unlikely closeness develops between Dooley and Mary, the suspected children close ranks, worried that one of their own is ready to break and give the detective what he wants.
But when unseen adversaries push back, with both damaging and deadly results, Dooley and Mary are forced to face their personal limits as they each discover the unthinkable identity of the real killer.