There is no dowry left for Elisabeth Knolly. She is destined for a nunnery, for eternal chastity - which is a good thing - because she doesn't want to do that with anyone.
But the devil is at her back, tempting her with impure thoughts about her tutor, Samuel. Her parents, deeply ashamed of their libidinous daughter, do everything they can to keep Elisa's thoughts from bodily pleasures. When she finally finds refuge in the nunnery, Elisa breathes a sigh of relief. But shame and guilt about her true nature follow her everywhere and it becomes apparent that the rules of the nunnery are not being obeyed. There's a phallic shaped piece of wood hidden behind St Jerome's books in the library and there are even rumours that the nunnery's chaplain is defiling women. Elisabeth seeks shelter from the realities of the convent with Sister Constance and Sister Isabella, but with King Henry's commitment to dissolving the abbeys, the sisters are left to fend for themselves.
Elisa, not knowing where to turn, finds sanctuary in one of London's infamous stews.