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After causing the death of the girl he loves, Jennifer De Silva, by an accidental heroin overdose, wealthy young dilettante Marcus Rottner sits in his New Jersey flat grief-stricken and unsure of how to dispose of the body. Having maintained a tape-recorded account of his relationship with Jenny, Marcus anxiously updates his reflections with the stunning abruptness of her death and his new identity as a murderer. When the doorbell interrupts his musings, Marcus panics and carries Jenny into the bathroom before admitting his older sister Selma. Angered that Marcus has broken a lunch date with her, Selma voices her concern over Marcus's growing isolation and, when he refuses to allow her to use the bathroom, wonders if he should consult a psycho-therapist. Annoyed, Marcus forces Selma to depart, then hides Jenny's body in his antique harpsichord. On his way to consult his best friend, Sigmund Ornstein, Marcus recalls meeting Jenny: Several months earlier, Marcus, who does not work but lives off of the generous monthly income from a family trust fund, makes another tour of Europe. In Venice he is attracted to a beautiful, blonde young woman balancing on a bridge railing and learns that she is a similarly bored, disenchanted, wealthy American. Jenny's impulsive nature enchants Marcus and the couple spends the rest of the day together. That evening, Jenny is disappointed to learn that Marcus does not have any marijuana and despite his promises to provide it, she returns to her hotel room. The next morning, Marcus watches in disappointment as Jenny, her mother and step-father make an early departure. A few weeks later Marcus, a New Yorker, takes a cab to Jenny's wealthy family home on Oyster Bay, Long Island. Surprised by his visit Jenny reveals that she is alone as her mother has gone to Acapulco. Marcus invites Jenny to the lavish apartment left him by his grandfather Max and confesses that the old man made the family fortune by racketeering. Jenny is impressed by the apartment's decor, but upon learning Marcus has nothing more than several marijuana joints, grows despondent and slips away without his noticing. In the present, after Marcus arranges to meet Sigmund at his apartment, he returns home to find Selma waiting with psychiatrist Sergei Wasserman. Despite Selma's insistence that her brother's behavior has grown increasingly erratic and Marcus's brash acknowledgement that he is a murderer, Wasserman remains unconvinced that he needs help and soon departs with Selma. Sigmund then arrives and the two friends carry Jenny's sheet-draped body to the trunk of Marcus' sports car. When Sigmund expresses astonishment at the indifference of people around them, Marcus cynically acknowledges society's disregard for everything. Later, as Marcus drives down the highway alone hoping to deposit Jenny's body in an obscure location, he gets a flat tire. A jovial van driver stops to offer assistance, causing Marcus several tense moments in an effort to retrieve the spare tire from the trunk while keeping Jenny's body hidden. Resuming his trip, Marcus returns to his memories of Jenny: Marcus telephones Jenny in Oyster Bay asking to see her, but declaring that it is her birthday, Jenny refuses until he vows to bring her some hashish. Marcus then contacts drug dealer Larry Dolci and afterward, hires a cab driven by gypsy-hippie Mardigian to take him to Oyster Bay. Finding Jenny with two hippies who are serenading her, Marcus offers her the hash, but she is indifferent and asks him to leave. Realizing the singers have provided Jenny with heroin, Marcus attempts to stop them from injecting her, but they beat him up. After the singers run off, Marcus is horrified when the stoned Jenny climbs on the rooftop and falls off. Cushioned by the trees around the house, Jenny is unhurt, but Marcus promises to help her overcome her empty existence. The couple returns to Italy, but Jenny finds no solace in Venice. Marcus takes her to the Jewish ghetto but when he feels a compulsion to go into a synagogue, Jenny waits outside, then flees the city altogether, leaving behind a tape recorder telling Marcus she cannot get emotionally involved with him. Disheartened, Marcus returns to America, where he moves out of the extravagant apartment to a more modest New Jersey flat and does not see Jenny for several weeks. In the present, Marcus visits Dolci to ask him for recommendations on disposing of Jenny, and the dealer tells him of a deserted area near the river. Shortly after Marcus reaches the desolate spot, however, three bikers approach him, but as they grow menacing and demand money, a motorcycle policeman arrives. Marcus lies to the policeman that the bikers helped fix his car and flees hastily. Driving away, Marcus resumes his tape-recorded memoirs and notes wryly that his time with Jenny's body marks the longest time they have spent together. Marcus then recalls the last time he saw Jenny: One afternoon, Marcus is startled when Jenny comes to his apartment. After explaining that she has gone around the world but remains unfocused and unhappy, Jenny asks if she might stay with Marcus for a while. Delighted, Marcus readily agrees and offers to cook her a meal. While he enthusiastically prepares the food, Marcus is unaware that Jenny has consumed a large amount of drugs. Soon after, she grows hysterical, then walks out on the balcony and threatens to throw herself off. Frightened, Marcus manages to grab Jenny, but she thrashes about and demands he give her the heroin that she has brought. Hoping to calm her, Marcus agrees and injects her with the fatal dose. In the present, Marcus finds himself chased down the freeway by a group of hippies in a red, white and blue hearse who eventually succeed in running him into a ditch, where his car catches fire. Managing to escape, Marcus watches the car burn along with Jenny's body. Weeks later, Marcus returns to Venice.