The film begins in Paris around the year 1902 when Claude Roc and his widowed mother are visited by Anne Brown, daughter of an old friend. Anne invites Claude to spend the summer on the coast of Wales with her widowed mother and sister Muriel. While she enjoys Claude's company, her hope is that he may be a husband for her introverted sister, who has problems with her eyesight. In the event, Claude and Muriel do start to fall in love and Claude overcomes her initial resistance and persuades her to agree to marriage. Madame Roc, supposedly concerned about their poor health and with the agreement of Mrs Brown, says they must live apart for a year without any communication before getting married.