In the middle of Buck Walters’ car contest, an explosion momentarily interrupts the proceedings. Unwilling to let go of the car, Violet and Iris see the town’s water tower has collapsed. QM Police immediately suspect the involvement of the Order of the Arranger.
On Sunday, after losing the car contest, Violet learns of a bird named Pierre at Meow’s the Time pet store that speaks and writes in French. With Iris’ help, Violet follows a clue from Pierre to a strange-shaped tree in the Question Mark woods. Aided by Bruno Ellis, the three discover a long-buried diary from French missionary Jacques Blanchet that details the mysterious disappearance of the French colony in 1748.
Meanwhile, Officer Ron continues to get to know Ms. Peterson, taking her on a true crime tour of Question Mark, all the while trying to learn what the Towns brothers are doing out in the woods. While listening to CDs, he receives a message from Quentin Quinn who suggests a tree with old shoes may be a point of contact between the world of Question Mark and the world of missing things. Little does he know that Holly Peterson has seen the very same tree herself and is struggling to understand its meaning.
While looking for more evidence to the existence of the glowing white circle, or what Blanchet referred to as the void, Violet encounters the purple light monster. For a moment, the creature seems to recognize her and then floats away, leaving behind a nest of shiny objects, including an antique ruby ring, which Violet believes may have belonged to one of the missing French colonists.
Where will this latest clue lead?