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In Paris to study painting, Chicago-born Christina James becomes romantically involved with a young Frenchman, Guy, who claims to be an engineering student. After 3 months of dating, they decide to consummate their love; but when they arrive in a sleazy hotel room, Guy confesses that he is only 16 and still in high school. Their affair ends, and Christina immerses herself in the life of the city and embarks upon a series of affairs. Eventually she falls in love with Walter Beddoes, a hard-drinking correspondent constantly being called away from Paris. While Walter is in Tripoli, Christina is visited by her father, a mild-mannered man who tries to persuade her to give up the life she is living and return with him to America. She refuses, preferring instead to wait for Walter's return. After several prolonged separations, she realizes that life with Walter will be an endless round of goodbys. Though still in love with him, she decides to marry a young doctor and return with him to San Francisco. Every 3 years they will be able to return to Paris for a 2-week vacation.