At a school for girls in America, a new teacher, Henriette Deluzy Desportes begins to teach French grammar. But, the students aren't paying any attention. One of the girls asks Henriette to spell the name of a French prison and a Duc. Henriette realizes that the scandal that she left behind has followed her. Her old friend, a minister, tells her to demand the respect of the girls, so she begins to tell her story, which unfolds in a flashback.
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Back in France, Henriette takes a position as governess to the children of Duc and Duchesse de Praslin. The Duc is a kind man who loves his children and wants the best for them. The Duchesse is haughty and mentally unstable. She doesn't really care for her children. She's completely obsessive towards the Duc and jealous, and the Duc hasn't been in love with her for years. The Duc decides to hire Henriette.
Henriette and the children grow close, and the Duc also begins to grow fond of her. A scandal begins that they are having an affair. The Duchesse believes the gossip and feels that Henriette is trying to steal her husband and her children's love. Henriette insists that the only thing between them is friendship, and that the Duchesse lost her children because of her coldness. The Duchesse tells Henriette that if she leaves without making a fuss, she'll send a letter of recommendation so that she can get another job. The Duc tries to stop Henriette, but Henriette says that even though they haven't done anything, she has to go so that the scandal won't ruin the children's lives. Henriette stays in a boarding house, waiting for months for the letter. Until she has it, she can't get a job as a governess. The Duc visits with the children every so often, and when he hears that the Duchesse hasn't written the letter, he goes back and demands that she write one. But, the Duchess says that she'll never write one. In a rage, the Duc kills the Duchesse.
Henriette is arrested, because the law feels that the Duc only killed the Duchesse because of his passionatte love affair. Because the Duc is nobility, he can't be arrested, although he is questioned by his peers. Both of them keep maintaining their innocence. The Duc takes poison. In an effort to get Henriette to confess, they take her to his bedside. The two of them don't speak, but when Henriette is taken away, the Duc confesses to his groundskeeper that he took poison because he was afraid that if they kept asking, he would admit that he had fallen in love with her. But, now, they won't have evidence. He dies, and Henriette is let go for lack of evidence. A minister helps her get a job in America, and the movie comes back to the present day. Henriette finishes telling her story, asking the girls if they'll accept her. The girls are moved by her story and ask forgiveness. She agrees to stay on as their teacher and the minister says he'll be her friend and show her that her life can be full of happiness.
The review of this Movie prepared by Angela Tircuit