The main character Joanna (Urszula Grabowska), waiting in vain for a letter from her husband who is in an Oflag, gives shelter to a little Jewish girl whose mother was caught during a round-up. Thus she becomes burdened with a secret she cannot reveal to anyone, even to her relatives. Joanna knows that she cannot keep Rose with her as she is already under observation, but she fails to find a hiding spot for Rose and is forced to become the lover of a German officer in return for protection. Forced by necessity, she has to cooperate with her enemies, becoming a traitor in the eyes of "her people". The final, symbolic image is suggestive - in a tearful and religious manner - of the fact that sheltering little Roza was Joanna's personal torture referring to Golgotha. However, the deeper meaning of that story is perverse and bitter: hiding the child was even more dangerous because of Joanna's "own people", mutually controlling the patriotic decency.