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When Mr. Satterthwaite visits a new exhibit at the Harchester Galleries, there is one painting that bears an unusual likeness to a mysterious acquaintance of his, Mr. Quin. In one bold move he purchases the canvas on the spot, and in another invites the artist of "The Dead Harlequin" to dine with him that night, with an empty place at the table set for Mr. Quin. Dinner conversation soon turns to the setting of "The Dead Harlequin," the doomed and ghostly house Charnley, where many have perished under tragic circumstances. But when a new guest is announced, it is not Mr. Quin but famed comic stage actress Aspasia Glen, who demands that she be given that very painting. Then comes a frantic telephone call from Alix Charnley herself, and Alix has the same request. What is the meaning of the painting, and can it shed any light upon the happenings at Charnley?