Todor, a Serbian petty smuggler, ferries crates of contraband cigarettes from sham fishing boats to middlemen working from a defunct pier. A burnt-out loner, caught between painful memories of the past and a pointless present, he is saving money to purchase a piece of isolated land somewhere in Herzegovina.
One day, under pressure, he unwillingly accepts a commission to deliver a large, wooden crate. Almost immediately he begins to regret his decision. Back home, he carries in a heavy tarpaulin and starts to unwrap it on his kitchen table. Inside is the body of a young woman - still alive but heavily drugged, filthy, bruised and wearing nothing but a tattered cotton tunicŠ human merchandise destined for prostitution...
Todor is trapped: he has betrayed his fellow smugglers, he cannot go to the police, nor can he take the woman to hospital. He must care for her himself - the last thing he wants to do. When the woman, Nilofar, eventually comes round she immediately assumes Todor to be yet another of her tormentors and reacts ferociously. But once she realises that she is safe, she allows some details of her traumatic ordeal to emerge, though her place of origin remains a mystery. Her body still shows signs of the torture she has endured. Before she was double-crossed by her traffickers she had been desperate to get to Paris. Now without money or documents, she finds herself captive within the walls of another broken past.
Todor's only hope of extricating himself from this predicament is to acquire a false passport for her before the smuggling ring catch up with them both, but this is costly and will take some time. Paradoxically, his attempts to get rid of her only cause him more trouble and anguish. Meanwhile, as Nilofar begins to heal and evolve, more clues to her identity begin to surface through her hauntingly beautiful singing.