In a quiet corner of South West Ireland lies a wide stretch of tidal water. On opposite sides of the water nestle the villages of Ballydowse and Carrickdowse: sleepy places which wake from the sound of the fishermen at their nets, the swish of wash fluttering in the breeze, and reassuringly, unmistakably, to the crescendo of children on their way to school. Large and small, tough and timid, buttoned up from head to toe, they tumble from their homes into the streets. But all is not quite as it seems. For an undeclared war exists between the Carricks and the Ballys and, though many of the townsfolk don't know it yet, battle lines have already been drawn. On one side stands the leader of the Ballys, Fergus, and his crew of loyal followers. Set against them is the head of the Carricks, Geronimo, and his gang. In the utterly serious world of childhood, a rivalry flourishes that will send ripples through two communities before it is over.