Nita is a young teacher who is stationed in central Africa when a military coup forces her to be recalled. At a small airstrip, she joins a group of local citizens and foreigners who have all missed the flight that she's stunned to learn might have been the last one out. As tensions rise, Leandro, a charismatic Angolan journalist, tries to unite disparate travellers around a story-telling game. An intervention by Vernon, an elderly archaeologist, results in the adoption of an unlikely theme: who were the artists of the Palaeolithic era and why did they paint in caves?
The game starts off tentatively, but soon everyone is drawn in - only to be stopped short with signs of impending danger getting closer. After failed attempts to find out more, the group decides to embark on a long walk to safety, agreeing to continue the story-telling along the way to distract themselves from the threats around them. Many of the travellers dread their turn but no one refuses. Some opt for fables, some seek clues from personal experience, others make thinly disguised arguments for their beliefs, while a few attempt a literal account of events that might have happened.
But does their game about the past contain a subtle warning about their future they should heed...before it's too late?