Glyn Severn and the Maharajah of Dour, both about 15 or 16, have been sent together to an English Boarding School. Glyn's father has been for many years a Colonel in the Maharajah's father's army, but now the old Maharajah is dead, and his son, known at school as "Singh", has inherited the title. The Colonel is Singh's guardian. There are the usual schoolboyish rivalries and fights, in particular involving a nasty individual called Slegge. A menagerie owner lives nearby, and among his animals is an elephant who is sometimes in a bad mood. It turns out that Glyn and Singh, who have had dealings with elephants in India, are rather good at bringing it under control.