Bronek Pekosinski lives in Zamosc, Poland. He is probably 83 years old. He has no family and does not really know who he is. Everything about his life is fictitious: symbolic is the date of birth - the day World War II broke out, as well as his surname - after PKOS, an abbreviation of a charitable institution, and the place of birth - the Nazi concentration camp, from where his mother threw him over a barbed wire fence. Even his friends and guardians turned out to be false. Only his loneliness and his hump seem to be authentic. Two great powers have vied for young Bronek's soul: Roman-Catholic church and a totalitarian state. He fell into alcoholism. Partially paralyzed as the effect of cerebral hemorrhage, he is fired with an ambition of acquiring a mastery in a game of chess.