A love story set in the year 1803 in the Valais, which is under Napoleons rule at the time. Set against this historical background, an impossible and forbidden love between two farmers, the beautiful and timid Marthe and her cousin Théophile, who is the illegitimate result of his mothers rape. Marthe is betrothed to marry his older brother but falls for Théophile. The couple are soon embroiled in a maelstrom of deceit, betrayal, jealousy and desperation. Their tumultuous love doomed in a century where severity rules and where the ruling landlords have control over the peasants lives.