Doreen Williamson is a quiet, shy librarian on Earth. Like many other young women, she is distrustful of her attractions, frightened of men, introverted in manner and sexually inhibited. She lives within a quiet, lonely, dissatisfying, sheltered, frustrated desperation, distant from her true self, her nature denied, her only friends books and her secret thoughts. In the realization and enactment of a profound fantasy, after acute self-conflict, she dares to study a form of dance in which she is at last free to move her body as a female, a form of dance in which she may revel in her beauty and womanhood, a form of dance historically commanded by masters of selected, suitable slaves: belly dance. She must then dance, for the first time, before men. In doing so, she discovers her own desirability and that she may be well bid upon.