The Café du Coin, with its view of the back of Notre-Dame, was teeming with police. Table No. 5 was still in shock. Jean-Michel Jolivet had seldom seen so many sad faces. Twelve in all, one of them dead, face down in his croissant. The retired inspector's bride of three weeks was sitting directly across from the deceased, General Sébastien Reboursier; Amy had quickly forgotten about her articles on cafés, cups, and salt and was now wondering how this could have happened with all of them at the same table. Witnesses and the police agreed that the manner of death was by poisoning. But why? The general had been primarily a desk general and had taught military history at Saint-Cyr. He was well liked and had no known enemies. Perhaps it was all a mistake. Maybe he wasn't the real target after all. Could it be a random poisoning by a deranged person with a grudge against society? Could the intended victim be someone else at the table? Wasn't one of them a former spy? Indeed, why were there so many retired spies on the Ile Saint-Louis? Why did the Ile provide them with a safe haven? With the help of Amy and colleagues, Jean-Michel finds out exactly what it is former spies do in retirement, if in fact they are retired, but neither Jean-Michel nor Amy could imagine what lay ahead.