How far would you go to get someone's attention? Carlota is a precocious twelve-year-old who is fond of making elaborate inventions and devoted to her astonishingly beautiful yet mildly eccentric, French nanny, Mademoiselle. Despite being courted by all the eligible bachelors in town, Mademoiselle never shows the tiniest jot of interest in the opposite sex until, on Christmas Day, Carlota's home-made decorations catch fire and the local fire brigade rush to the scene. Among the tall, athletic firefighters there is one short, balding man called Nick Kowalski with whom mademoiselle falls instantly and passionately in love. She turns to Carlota for help- how can she ever contrive to meet him again and ignite his affections? The answer lies in a box of matches...