In 1912 Germany, a freshly graduated engineer with modest origins, Friedrich Zeitz, becomes the right hand of aging tycoon Karl Hoffmeister. When Hoffmeister’s degrading health condition starts to confine him permanently to his house, Friedrich has to visit him at home to get briefed. Thus Friedrich makes the acquaintance of Hoffmeister’s younger wife Charlotte, a beautiful and reserved woman in her early 30s. He immediately becomes enamored with her and struggles with his growing unrequited feelings for her, not realizing they are reciprocated. Just as they disclose their mutual attraction towards one another, Friedrich has to leave the country to represent Hoffmeister overseas. The outbreak of World War I keeps him away from Germany for a long time. Only after the end of the war and many years of separation are Friedrich and Charlotte able to reunite.