Paislee Hobson is born into a world struggling after a war that killed most of the world’s population. Rebuilding has been accomplished through androids developed by and under the control of The Institute. The human population has been divided into strata.
Paislee, a legal clerk, is a member of the upper stratum. To avoid another heartache, she purchases a human-looking android companion, Pellegrin. No one suspects Pellegrin is not human. He arouses and satisfies all her desires and is a polished companion and conversationalist in public.
When strange things begin to happen around the courthouse, people start acting mysteriously. Some disappear and others are murdered. Pellegrin’s true identity surfaces as he slowly and methodically takes over all aspects of Paislee’s life. She is in turmoil trying to find a way out.