A beautiful New Orleans woman in 1840, is forced into a marriage with a rich man she doesn't love.
In sultry, tempestuous New Orleans of the 1840s, the frontier port was bustling, the theater was all the rage, and a system called placage ruled the lives of beautiful young Quadroons. These lovely girls were the daughters of wealthy white Creoles and their mulatto mistresses, trained all their lives to be placees, mistresses of white Creole gentlemen. In return for their favors, the placees were each given a house on Rampart Street, furnishings, and a life of luxury.
Forced into this decadent but respected system, Mariette Delon, a beautiful Quadroon with skin like a magnolia petal, rebels against it, wishing only to pursue a career in the theater and lead a moral life.----
Against her will, she attends the Quadroon Ball, where such alliances are arranged and contracts signed. Here she meets handsome young Philippe Grillet, a wealthy aristocrat who tells her she should not be a placee but the wife of a Creole, reinforcing her innermost desires. But her father has his own plans for her, and it is up to Philippe to save her, first by accepting a life-threatening challenge, and finally by pursuing her across the continent to claim her for his own. Only then is he rewarded with a gift more precious than gold.----