Malquerida is the story of Acacia, a beautiful young woman who has lost her father in a terrible accident when she was only a little child. She ignores that she will find in her stepfather one of the deadliest love triangles.
Acacia´s mother, Cristina, suddenly becomes a widow, learning then that the hacienda is in heavy debt. Seeing no other solution, she decides the best thing to do is to sell it, despite the huge pain it gives her to lose her dead husband´s patrimony. It is right then that Esteban, a good-looking worker at the hacienda, offers his help to save the land which he dearly loves because he sees Cristina in it.
Little by little, Esteban and Cristina boost the hacienda again. With the everyday sharing and their teamwork, their relationship grows into a beautiful love since Esteban has won Cristina´s heart. This hurts Acacia deeply because, being so young, she can´t get over her father´s dead, far less can she accept her mother is having a new relationship. Her disconformity is such that she tries to escape from the hacienda. Acknowledging Acacia´s feelings, her grandparents talk to Cristina so that her grandchild can move in with them while she manages to get past Alonso´s dead.
Time passes and Acacia returns, turned into a beautiful young woman who awakens Esteban´s desire. At first, he doesn´t recognize her and introduces himself as the owner of the hacienda, but Acacia, defiant, tells him that the owner is Cristina Rivas, her mother. Esteban realizes then that this beautiful woman is Acacia and tries to smooth things over with her. He becomes condescending and treats her very well, just like he did when she was a little girl and he was very attentive and always left some gifts in the stable for her.
Acacia´s return to the hacienda roused Manuel´s interest, a friend from childhood who is determined to marry her. However, one day Acacia meets Ulises by chance when he is arguing with Esteban, something that prompts in her a huge admiration towards that determined young man. That admiration eventually turns into love. But this love is cut off when Ulises suddenly disappears from Acacia´s life, which results in her getting closer to Esteban; basically to please Cristina at first, but overtime that proximity makes that Esteban´s big desire for Acacia grows to the point that Acacia also gets confused with her own feelings. This is why, before a tragedy takes place, she accepts to marry Manuel, despite all the nasty things she discovers about him.
Esteban gets infuriated, and the pure and big love he feels for Cristina transforms into bitterness since he goes crazy for not being able to have Acacia.
Only true love can bring joy back to “La Benavente” hacienda, and reestablish inner peace into Acacia and Cristina´s hearts; unlike the blind passion that kills, destroys and only makes the loved woman to become an un-loved one / a malquerida