Slater Brown's fictionalized interpretation of the events surrounding the end of John's life achieves dramatic effects as the narrative of Asher, a shepherd youth who trails two assassins sent after John by Herodia. Asher is with his flock near Bethabara when he overhears the two men. But he is unsteady in his convictions and loath to risk his life following them, until Zaccheus, his wife and his daughter Deborah- pilgrims on their way to hear John- persuade Asher of his duty to try to prevent the attack. Events follow at a swift pace. Asher struggles to overcome his fears, goes to John and is persuaded of his greatness. It is a short step then, to Asher's full involvement with the ideals of John and of Jesus whom John baptizes. It makes him a better person, affirms Deborah's love for him and though he is captured and must watch the evil interplay of forces between Herod, Herodia and Salome that brought John's death. Asher and Deborah go on to become part of the New Christian teaching.