Lunacy was Nate Burke's last chance. As a Baltimore cop, he'd watched his partner die on the street-and the guilt still haunts him. With nowhere else to go, he accepts the job as Chief of Police in this tiny, remote Alaskan town. Aside from sorting out a run-in between a couple of motor vehicles and a moose, he finds his first weeks on the job are relatively quiet. But just as he wonders whether this has been all a big mistake, an unexpected kiss on New Year's Eve under the brilliant Northern Lights of the Alaska sky lifts his spirit and convinces him to stay just a little longer.
Meg Galloway, born and raised in Lunacy, is used to being alone. She was a young girl when her father disappeared, and she has learned to be independent, flying her small plane, living on the outskirts of town with just her huskies for company. After her New Year's kiss with the Chief of Police, she allows herself to give in to passion-while remaining determined to keep things as simple as possible. But there's something about Nate's sad eyes that gets under her skin and warms her frozen heart.
And now, things in Lunacy are heating up. Years ago, on one of the majestic mountains shadowing the town, a crime occurred that is unsolved to this day-and Nate suspects that a killer still walks the snowy streets. His investigation will unearth the secrets and suspicions that lurk beneath the placid surface, as well as bring out the big-city survival instincts that made him a cop in the first place. And his discovery will threaten the new life-and the new love-that he has finally found for himself.
Homicide detective Nate Burns (Cibrian) once lived a tough life in Baltimore, but decides to move to a small Alaskan town, after being offered the position of chief of police. Burns leaves Baltimore just a few weeks after his partner is shot and killed, feeling partially responsible for what has happened.
Nate finds himself not very welcome by the town's residents, but takes an immediate interest in Meg Galligan (Rimes). Meg is a young pilot, whose father left and disappeared in 1994; leaving her mother Charlene (Arquette), who Meg constantly argues with, to single-handedly take care of her.
Soon, Nate helps in the search and rescue of two lost mountain climbers, and asks for Meg's help in getting there. Upon their rescue, Nate also locates a frozen corpse, who turns out to be Meg's father. It's clear that he was murdered, as the axe used to kill him is still embedded in his body. Meg has trouble mourning for her father, because she has always been mad at him for abandoning his family.
Meg suggests that Nate begin to investigate, but he is reluctant to do so, explaining that he moved from Baltimore to avoid murder cases. After giving in, Nate starts collecting information, and soon finds that nobody in town liked the man, and that he had affairs with several of the townswomen.
Soon, Max, one of the locals, seemingly commits suicide. Nate believes that Max had something to do with Meg's father's death. This upsets Meg, as Max was a well-liked man in town. Eventually they find Max's journal, in which he admits to the murder. Nate however, doesn't believe he was the sole murderer, and refuses to believe that he committed suicide.
With the help of Meg, Nate continues the investigation. As they take their relationship to a new level, he finds out that they are being followed. Fearing for their own lives, Nate starts questioning everyone in town. Nate proposes to Meg, and soon after getting engaged, Nate is fired, because the locals have been complaining that all the trouble started after he arrived. Nate briefly considers returning to Baltimore, until he learns that an earring was found next to the body.
As the police arrive to arrest the murderer, he takes a woman hostage, and shoots Meg in the arm. He is arrested after Nate shoots him.