After contracting an illness during his travels, Lord Vance was left both impotent and prey to fits of madness, and now lives vicariously through painting handsome subjects. Cadmon is shy at first, but his affection for his lordship quickly grows and he regales his master with tales of erotic, recurring dreams.
Lord Vance’s servant Tamar, a handsome Batavian slave gifted in the healing arts, attempts to hide the enormity of his master’s affliction until the night Cadmon stumbles onto the truth linking his dreams and Lord Vance’s madness. Passion flares between the three of them but is shattered when Cadmon discovers he was hired under false pretenses.
Heartbroken, Cadmon seeks refuge in the ruins of Whitby Abbey. There, haunted by the memories of both saints and madmen, he must find the strength to offer his body and risk his sanity to save the men he loves.