• Two men named Benbow and Popeye stand at a stream in rural Mississippi.
• Benbow is a stranger in the area and is being prevented from continuing on his trip by Popeye.
• Eventually the two men begin to walk and reach an old plantation called Old Frenchman Place.
• Three men on the porch eye Benbow suspiciously and Popeye takes Benbow into the house to introduce him to Ruby, a young woman who serves as a cook.
• At dinner, Benbow reveals that he has left his wife, Belle, because she wore makeup without his permission.
• Benbow questions Ruby about why she tolerates the abuse from the men, but she stays because she has a child with one of the men named Goodwin.
• A man named Tommy takes Benbow to a place where he can get a ride to Jefferson.
• Popeye has blocked off the road one mile...
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