At age five, Corentin is foisted on to his great-grandmother, Augustine by his unloving mother whom he never sees again. He grows up in a small village surrounded by trees, but when he’s older leaves for university where he becomes enchanted by city life. The days grow hotter, and droughts become more common until one day, the earth seems to explode. Corentin and his university friends stay hold up underground until they believe enough time has passed for them to reemerge. Above ground, everything appears to be destroyed and all Corentin can think about is returning to Augustine. Will she still be alive? Will the charred trees ever come back to life? Will they ever be able to safely drink water from a stream again?