The vast holiday resort of Tripitaka, carved from the jungle of northern Burma, is close to completion. It is to be the jewel in the crown of Straits Royal Group, a hotel chain whose recent growth and massive capital have surprised the financial world. Patrick Hyde suspects the chain's casinos are being used to launder drug money. The West is being flooded by ever increasing amounts of Burmese heroin. Could Straits Royal also be one big distribution network for the drug? His suspicions make him a target--but for whom? Meanwhile Marian Pyott, M.P., has just rekindled a passionate affair, but when Hyde convinces her that a young man in her constituency was murdered they become desperate to unearth the evidence that will keep them alive. For Hyde and Marian, Burma becomes the most unpleasant place on earth.