Killers seem to be throwing themselves at Nero Wolfe, when a man with a date with murder won’t take no for an answer. The large, red bearded man claims to have intent to kill someone. What does he want for Nero to do? Carry out the revenge if he should fail at it? Dave tells how a couple acquaintances, Carl, and Mitch had fallen on hard times.
In cutting their losses, and a deck of cards, they arrive at a business settlement. When a cheater is found out, Mitch is killed. In escaping, Carl left Dave with a worthless envelope of paper scraps, instead of his share of the loot. Time passes, and Carl, not his real name has become a wealthy tycoon.
Nero refuses to help, so Dave goes his way, and the cops are called on to stop the killing. Without anything to go on, other than aliases, how can it be stopped? After 3 days, Archie is frustrated at a lack of progress. Will he have to search every building in the city? How many rich men can there be in town?
What other clues do our detectives have to go on? Is Carl short, or tall? Is he a white collar type, or something else? The list has narrowed down, but there might still be false information to sift through. Will bodies pile up? Showdowns, gunplay, and old fashioned bluffs of calculated risk hold the answers.