Linguère fled her native land and acquired a legendary fortune; now she is returning by train, accompanied by a man dressed in black, named Gaana. On the platform, the crowd that presses forward includes Dramaan, Linguère's former lover. They speak of the past. During a banquet offered in her honor, Linguère announces that she will make a fabulous donation, subject to certain conditions. Before setting out the conditions, she asks Gaana to speak. Gaana recounts how Dramaan, who once had a child by Linguère, paid two false witnesses to testify that they had slept with her so that Dramaan could deny paternity. At which point Linguère announces that the donation is conditional on Dramaan's death - sparking stupor and indignation.
A long ordeal is ahead for Dramaan.