It wasn't a wealthy childhood, but it was a happy one. Sybil and Lizzie Cream, brought up in a fisherman's cottage on the edge of the cold North Sea, were content to leave privilege where it belonged: with their friends the Wintertons. Christina Winterton was the same age as Sybil and the two girls were inseparable, but it was Lizzie whom Ralph Winterton, three years older, found irresistible.
Then war came to East Anglia, and so did Fenn Fitzmann of the American Army Air Force. At their first meeting he is attracted by Sybil's subtle charm, but before he sees her again her own personal tragedy has struck, and he finds her changed almost out of recognition.