Bloody Sunday (1972) catapulted the Irish "troubles" onto the world stage, exacerbating suspicion in US intelligence circles that the IRA might turn to the Soviets for guns. South Boston native Raymond Daly, just off a CIA stint in Laos, is sent to Ireland to re-establish a line running guns to the IRA. He deftly earns the trust of gunrunner Slowey, a tough money-making South Boston native, who introduces him to an IRA splinter group operating near Blacklion, a town bordering on Northern Ireland.
Ray begins to manipulate Aoife, an Irish woman, in order to gain the trust of the community and embed himself in the organization. After the British Special Air Services raid a safehouse, Ray finds himself involved in executing an informant and his wife. But he also finds himself getting soft on some of those he was sent to infiltrate and becoming more like his cover, "an Irish American gunrunner with a romantic attachment to the Cause," and less like an obedient CIA operative.
Events spiral, culminating in a shootout with the British army that compels Ray to make a Faustian decision on his future and that of Aoife and the others he was assigned to manipulate.
Inspired by complex, real-life political events with far-reaching consequences, Luke Beirne plays with and destabilizes the traditional spy tale. He also ponders the diabolic power invested in intelligence operatives.