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During a formal dinner party at the home of Señor Nobile and his wife, Lucia, the servants unaccountably leave their posts until only the major-domo is left. After dinner, the guests adjourn to the music room where one of the women plays a piano sonata. Later, instead of leaving, the guests remove their jackets, loosen their gowns, and settle down for the night. By morning it is apparent that for some inexplicable reason, they are trapped in the room. Days pass, and their plight intensifies; they become quarrelsome, hostile, and hysterical. One of the guests, Russell, dies and his body is placed in a large cupboard; Béatriz and Eduardo, a young couple about to be married, lock themselves in a closet and commit suicide; a sheep is slaughtered and roasted on a fire made from floorboards; the host gives his secret supply of morphine to Leonora, whose physician, another guest, reveals to others that she is dying of cancer, but the drugs are stolen by Francisco and Juana, an incestuous brother and sister; and Ana, a practitioner of witchcraft, invokes the demons of hell while lapsing into feverish hallucinations. Eventually, Raúl suggests that Nobile is responsible for their predicament and that he must be sacrificed. As Nobile offers to take his own life, Letitia sees that they are all in the same positions as when their plight began. Obeying her instructions, they retrace their conversation and movements and discover that they are free to leave the room. To celebrate their salvation, the guests attend mass at the cathedral. When the service is over, they find that they, along with the priest and the entire congregation, are once again trapped.