It's 1788 in the Vende e in western France, and change is in the air. Reform
is being talked of in the great world beyond, in Paris, and even the peaceful village inhabited by Jacques Verdun and his friends - aristocratic painter Edmond de Bellegarde, his beautiful cousin Flora, and young farmer Pierre Bardon - seems touched by new possibilities. But as events both in Paris and in the local community start to gather pace, as revolution breaks out and the traditions of centuries start to break down, friendships will be severely tested in the most unexpected of ways. And when pitiless civil war comes, who will be left to testify to old feelings, and old loyalties?