In present-day London, Michael Walton visits his older cousins, Walter and Oliver Page. Interested in family history, he asks them about his great aunt, Anne Keyes, the sister of his grandmother, Celia. Anne, an actress, was the eldest of the three Keyes children. Desperate for children, her father, Sir Alexander, a Member of Parliament#United Kingdom, and mother, Maud, had adopted her. However, Maud subsequently gave birth to Ralph and Celia. Michael is curious to learn what happened to Anne, which leads Walter to reminisce about the summer of 1939, at the Keyes' estate in Norfolk.