Little Milly is left an orphan after the death of her mother and she is sent to live with her bachelor uncle, Sir Edward Wentworth. The latter has no use for children, especially of the female variety, but as the days go by he is warmed by his niece's bright and endearing personality. She loves to tell him stories from her daily life and of her friends the Maxwells, who live in the forest. Milly is also a fierce believer and this makes her uncle realise just how much he has lost touch with his own faith. One of her favourite biblical tales is the Parable of the Prodigal Son, and it takes on a new meaning for the two when the Maxwell's missing son suddenly returns.