Cultures (in Peru archaeologist Guy Reed has made the most important archaeological fred ""since the gold of Troy"") and cultures (his Nobel prize-winning epidemiologist brother Grant must mix up dozens of them in an attempt to offset the virulent microbe Guy has let loose from one of those burial tombs). Most of the action takes place aboard a Mercy hospital ship where Grant tries to save his brother's life, does develop some immune factor from his plasma even if Guy dies first, while the ""maldicion"" spreads dangerously. On the other hand Lael Valdez, once in love with Guy, does survive and at the end Lael will be Grant's, ""his and his alone."" Without really as much of a story to tell as Slaughter usually has (the romance is a minimum) and just as many words, a prosectomy might have been indicated. But then he does have his name and his steadfast readership who may not find their interest dying off of more natural causes.