Mary Blackwell travels back to her hometown of Maiden Hollow to clear out her recently deceased father’s house. She takes her two children Alice and Sam with her. Whilst there they discover a tiny village, which has been isolated from surrounding towns and in which the locals have developed their own way of life. The villagers are initially hostile towards the new family, but grow to accept them. Local priest Michael Howdy, however, takes an unhealthy interest in Mary’s daughter Alice. Villagers Harry Price, John Elliot and Tom Hopkins, notice this interest and keep a close watch on Michael. After being involved in a car crash some years back, Michael has suffered head and brain injuries which spark off a series of surreal fantasies confusing Alice with his dead wife Isobel (who died in the car crash.) Whether or not Alice is connected with Isobel or that she merely has a resemblance to her is left deliberately ambiguous. Michaels illness invades his mind and his sanity leading to him finding himself in position he could never have intended. The villagers enact swift and callous retribution only realising the horror they have committed at the last moment when it is already too late….