The story begins in mid-seventies Kerala where William - in his late thirties, is a priest in the solitary church in a small coastal town. Rosemary, a young girl in her early twenties, who aspires to make a career in nursing, co-incidentally comes in contact with him. He helps her in getting admissions in chosen institutes and placements in rewarding jobs after completion of her training. Although initially he was just a benefactor to her, soon a deeper relationship ensues between them spurred by an accidental physicality when they end up making love. This results into a phase of deep guilt and self-persecution for both of them individually. William goes to the extent of travelling to distant places under changed identities and making confessions for his sins in front of priests not known to him. Likewise, Rosemary slides towards self-enforced isolation. But as is the wont of such relationships, they are not able to keep away from each other too long and end up colliding again, sexually and emotionally. They become lovers. However, it remains a clandestine affair because the call of the ecclesiastical order expected William to remain a celibate. The relationship staggers along with no promise and no future despite William assuring her now and then that he hoped to get the permission for marriage on account of expected change of norms from the Vatican and if it did not happen soon, he would leave the order and marry her regardless. Few years pass during which Rosemary also goes through three abortions and acute phases of insecurity. Much as they try to keep their affair private, soon they become the object of gossip and derision of the small town society.