Beautiful, detached, laconic, consumptive Lily Brest is a streetwalker with few clients. She loves her idle boyfriend Raoul who gambles away what little she earns. The town's power broker, called the rich Jew, discovers she is a good listener, so she's soon busy. Raoul imagines grotesque sex scenes between Lily and the Jew; he leaves her for a man. Her parents, a bitter Fascist who is a cabaret singer in drag and her wheelchair-bound mother, offer no refuge. Even though all have a philosophical bent, the other whores reject Lily because she tolerates everyone, including men. She tires of her lonely life and looks for a way out. Even that act serves the local corrupt powers.