Bella receives a visit from her new boyfriend Carlo from Berlin. They are interrupted by public prosecutor Mehlhorn, who asks for Bella’s help in an unusual murder investigation. Joseph Mackeder, who lives in modest circumstances on the edge of Hamburg with his four kids and a miscellany of dogs, is found shot dead in the woods near his home. When social services threaten to take the kids into care, they take Bella prisoner at gunpoint. They demand that they be allowed to stay together and that their mom, who had abandoned both husband and kids years earlier, be brought back. And if their demands aren’t met, they threaten to kill Bella and themselves.
While the house is encircled by snipers, Martensen attempts to clarify the prevailing interests of the dead man’s brother-in-law in the property and discover the whereabouts of the children’s mother. In the meantime, Bella does her best to gain the trust of the children, who touchingly support one another, but with the help of their father’s rifles seem to have the situation completely under control. And so Bella on the inside and Martensen on the outside gradually inch closer to the oppressive truth and in a dramatic showdown not only clear up Mackeder’s murder, but also another murder committed years earlier.