During the Taisho era of 1918, 17-year-old Benio Hanamura, a boisterous and quarrelsome tomboy, leads a life of kendo and tree-climbing adventure with her best friends Tamaki and Ranmaru. Benio determines to find love on her own, though her family has other plans. She meets the handsome second lieutenant Shinobu, who immediately ruffles Benio's feathers. Benio then discovers, to her dismay, that Shinobu plans to marry her as an arrangement between their families. Benio tries to sabotage these plans by failing at her domestic duties, but gradually finds herself falling in love with Shinobu and his family. Alas, with their country on the brink of war, Shinobu enlists to fight the Russian army. Striving to be bolder than her culture allows, young Benio does more than simply wait at home with her feelings; she must continue on her journey to modern womanhood, with no guarantee that her fiancé will return.