At a manor called Rookwood Place, there existed a legend claiming that a death would follow after a branch of an ancient tree would break. After a branch does fall from the tree, Piers Rookwood, the owner, dies. It is revealed to Luke Bradley that he was the son, and thus heir, of Piers Rookwood along with the fact that Piers Rookwood murdered Bradley's mother. At the same time, Rookwood's wife, Maud Rookwood, puts forth her own schemes to ensure that her son, Ranulph Rookwood, is able to claim the inheritance for himself. In the heap of schemes, treasons and love triangles shows up Dick Turpin, a highwayman and thief, who is introduced at the manor under the pseudonym Palmer. While there, he makes a bet with one of the guests that he could capture the old Rookwood inheritance for himself.