‘You got to break the pattern. That’s what they all tell you. Most guys just go back. Same old same old. Same mates. Same pubs. Same deals. But there’s always scores to settle. Only way of making the break is go somewhere new…’
In Afghanistan, Steve is on patrol in an armoured personnel carrier when it is ambushed and blown up. He loses all his mates in the incident. Although his injuries are relatively minor, he is unable to cope with his feelings of desolation, rage and guilt. He leaves the army. Back in the UK, he finds his mum has taken up with Dave, a violent man who is abusing her. In alcohol fuelled rage, he attacks Dave. He is arrested and sentenced to 5 years on a charge of GBH.
After three years of good behaviour, Steve is released from prison on licence; but his mum refuses to let him back into the family home.
Determined to make a new start and put his violent past behind him, he takes up the recommendation of a fellow inmate and shows up at The Quarry, a down at heel rural pub in the middle of nowhere, asking for somewhere to sleep for a few nights. Bessie, an elderly woman who is far more streetwise than her frail appearance and trusting nature suggests, allows him to stay in the old caravan that has been abandoned in the pub garden.
Steve seems to be settling in well when his brother, Kevin, turns up, demanding repayment of a large debt.
‘Thing is Steve, you ain’t got a monopoly on trouble. Runs in the family in case you hadn’t noticed.’
Sandra, Bessie’s daughter and the same age as Steve’s mum, starts to take an interest in him. She is attracted to him, though deeply suspicious – but she has a dark secret of her own. And Alan, one of the regulars in The Quarry, is jealous of the interest that Sandra is showing in Steve.
With Kevin, Alan and Sandra each putting him under very different kinds of pressure , Steve's finding it very hard stay off the booze.
And then Kevin steals from Bessie as a way of getting what Steve owes him...