Returning home after a night of love spent in a woodman's hut with Orsola, Pietro is arrested by the police for a crime he did not commit. His mother and youngest sister, Rosaria, go to Orsola begging her to provide Pietro with the alibi that will clear him. But Rocco, Orsola's brother, dreading a family scandal, constrains Orsola to silence. Condemned despite his innocence, Pietro escapes from prison, but the police track him down and kill him, and his mother, before the eyes of Rosaria. Years pass, and one day Rocco stumbles upon a half-frozen young woman lying in the snow. He takes her home and confides her to the care of Orsola. Later, yielding to the pleas of Orsola, Rocco and Rocco's son, Salvatore, the girl stays on in the house, and Salvatore falls in love with the beautiful stranger, who is careful to keep the family members from learning she is Rosaria, the grown up sister of Pietro seeking revenge for the deaths of her brother and mother.