In 1915, the world is in turmoil. A war, the likes of which has never been seen, involves much of the known world. An Englishman, John Norton Griffiths, proposes using miners to tunnel under the enemy lines and destroy them from below. Once his idea is accepted, other countries of the Empire decide to raise similar tunnelling companies. Canada, New Zealand and Australia provide companies of men, drawn from mining and trades backgrounds, to assist in the defeat of an aggressive enemy, intent on domination.
These men are asked to do the unthinkable, in less than satisfactory settings. They dig long tunnels and blow up hundreds of men at a time, whilst all the time, not knowing how close the enemy was to them, trying to do the same thing. For these men it was a war in the dark, a war of nerves. Some held, some did not.
We follow the life of one man through his wars, the one he is fighting without and the one he is fighting within, whilst at the same time, he falls in love, however improbable it may seem. We experience how the decisions of one person can continue to impact several generations after.