Paul Cairns, the narrator of this story, is a young journalist with a penchant for the occult. Prompted by a mysterious recurring nightmare, he seeks the advice of Gilbert North, scholar, country
squire and occultist, who leads him on an extraordinary series of adventures involving a quest for the Tetrad, four primal magical objects corresponding to the elements and the suits of the
Tarot. Cairns' life becomes full of weird and supernatural happenings in a great magical battle between dark and light. But in the world of Gilbert North things are not quite what they seem.
Layers of reality and unreality are peeled away until the deeper meaning of the whole quest is revealed.