Accompanied by his son Anthony, Socrates returns to Corsica, his birthplace, after thirty years’ self-imposed exile. Father and son travel remote mountain roads, and the old man celebrates an emotional reunion with long lost friends. But violence seems to follow in his wake, and the friends are savagely attacked by unknown assailants. A single clue is found at the scene of the crime: a silver cigarette lighter engraved with Socrates’ initials.
Disturbed, Anthony resolves to uncover the truth behind his father’s exile and return, but is overwhelmed by the island’s strange and brutal beauty and distracted by an intense affair with Marie, a beautiful and unpredictable local girl. When her mother forbids her to have anything to do with him, Anthony is mystified. But one thing is clear: Socrates’ return has reawakened unbearably painful family secrets, secrets which will lead father and son deeper and deeper into the heart of a dark mystery.