Liz MacMillan has wanted to be a nurse ever since her baby brother died of scarlet fever but her domineering father won't allow it. With the outbreak of war, nursing becomes a patriotic duty and Liz gets her chance, together with her new friend Helen Gallagher, whose large, Irish-Catholic family provides a striking contract to the constraint of the MacMillan household.
Working in Glasgow's Western Infirmary, one of the other students, Mario Rossi, touches Liz's heart. She is devastated when he is deported as an "enemy alien" and longs for the peace that will bring about his return.
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