Before retiring to bed one evening, an author looks out of her living room window and sees a line of people in her driveway. First in line is a young woman cradling a baby, behind her a fastidious man in his 40s, then a thin graying older woman, etc. These people are, she realizes, characters in her upcoming novels. She is awoken in the middle of the night by footsteps on the stairs leading to her bedroom. The door opens and the fastidious man from the driveway enters her room. He apologizes for intruding but feels compelled to ask her to write his story before the others. Eventually she agrees. His name will be Alvar Eide, he is 42, single, works for an art gallery and leads an orderly yet uneventful life. All of which suits Alvar perfectly until the author decides to introduce a young homeless female drug addict into his story. It all begins innocently enough when a young woman walks into the gallery on a brutal Norwegian winter day and Alvar offers her a cup of coffee to warm up. Soon she appears on his doorstep and becomes an integral yet potentially damaging aspect to his life. As the direction of his story shifts in an increasingly uncomfortable direction, Alvar “visits” the author and implores to alter the course of events.