Occasionally, Constable Nick leaves his blissful beat at Aidensfield to assist his hard-pressed colleagues in busier places. For this reason, he finds himself on patrol in the seaside resort of Strensford. When a message in a bottle washes up on the beach, suggesting that a girl is being held hostage, Nick must urgently find where the bottle entered the sea. He searches for teenage runaways among the boarding houses of Strensford and discovers a very clever thief. And, along the way, there are lighter moments, such as helping a magician entertain at a tea party and discovering a group of police officers on holiday who are desperately trying to stay anonymous.