A controversial exhibit of Chinchorro mummies is about to open in Chicago at Dolores Tower, the latest building by the equally controversial local developer Louie Dolores. The mummies - dating from 2000 to 7000 BC - are incredibly fragile, making their transportation and display very risky. Even worse, the pending exhibition is being protested by a group who regard the exploitation of the mummies to be desecration of their ancient dead, leading to both tension and excitement over the coming opening. Lucky for Chicago Police Detective Jeremy Ransom none of this has anything to do with him. He figures as long as he can keep his friend, the elderly Miss Emily Charters, away from the opening, then there won't be a murder and he won't have to get involved. But first there are reports that a mummy is moving around the exhibit at night, then there are death threats against the developer, and when one night, alone in the exhibit, Louie Dolores is attacked by one of the mummies, Ransom is assigned to find out what's going on. With the sharp wits and intelligence of Emily at his beck and call, Ransom has to sort out the truth in what could be his strangest assignment ever before the a volatile situation turns fatal.