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Carol Ledoux, a beautiful, reserved Belgian woman, works in London as a manicurist and lives in an apartment with her sister Helen. Although she has an admiring boyfriend, Colin, Carol is repulsed by sexuality, and particularly by Michael, her sister's married lover. Carol is repelled by his razor and toothbrush in their bathroom and especially by the sounds of their lovemaking at night. Helen and Michael leave for a vacation in Italy, and left alone, Carol falls into a tortured state of mind. She leaves her job at the beauty salon and barricades herself in the apartment. Her mind becomes further unhinged when she receives an abusive telephone call, intended for her sister, from Michael's wife. She tears out the telephone, shutting herself in totally. She imagines a rapist coming through the door and sees arms reaching out of the walls to ravish her. The slight cracks in the apartment walls appear to enlarge and the walls to crumble. An uncooked rabbit in a dish decays and appears grotesque and hideous. Colin, concerned about Carol's condition, breaks down the door; when he turns his back, she bludgeons him with a candlestick and places his lifeless body in the bathtub. The landlord comes to collect the rent, and when he interprets Carol's scanty dress as a sexual invitation, she slashes him to death with Michael's razor. Returning from their vacation, Helen and Michael find Carol in a trance on the floor and telephone the police.