Times change for Samantha when she moves to New York City to live with Uncle Gard and Aunt Cornelia. They change for Nellie, Samantha's servant friend in Mount Bedford, too. But Nellie's changes aren't as happy as Samantha's. When her friend disappears, Samantha thinks Nellie has been lost forever. But after a long and scary search, Samantha finds Nellie and her sisters in a New York orphanage. The orphanage is not a good place, so the girls plan a daring escape.