When a Turkish bandit holds engineers building the Baghdad Railway to ransom, Britain is secretly relieved as the Railway threatens the Persian Gulf oil-fields. Feigning help, the Foreign Office sends the notorious Lady Kelso, once lover of the bandit chief, with Captain Matthew Ranklin and Conall O’Gilroy of the fledgling Secret Service Bureau as ‘diplomatic protection’. A journey by the Kaiser’s private train to the bandit stronghold leads through ambush, betrayal, murder and bombardment. For there are others – German, Turkish and French – honourably putting their countries’ interests above everything. In the misty Turkish mountains, all of Ranklin’s military experience and O’Gilroy’s back-streets savvy are tested to the full.