Hans has killed the dog of Firmin, a shepherd. Wild with rage, Firmin kidnaps Elsi, Hans' fiancée and locks her up at his home. Hans, a peddler, vows to find the missing girl. This is what he does and he manages, with the help of Mânu, the village idiot, to give Elsi a letter. On seeing her, the changeling falls in love at first sight with the young woman. Elsi soon realizes that Mânu can become her instrument of vengeance.