A street race results in one of the cars careening off a bridge and into the muddy river below. Of the three people in that car, only Mary Henry emerges alive from the river. Mary seems desensitized to life after that incident. She escapes that town and the memory of the accident by accepting a job in another town in Utah as a church organist, despite she not being religiously minded. She vows never to return. However, on her drive to Utah, she begins to see visions of a man - almost as an apparition - who she believes is out to get her. Other strange occurrences are that she at times seems possessed, and at other times seems to be physically invisible to the world. All these occurrences make her at times repulsed by her lecherous rooming house neighbor, John Linden, while other times feeling the need for his companionship. Despite the help of a therapist, Mary believes that specifically the visions of the man have something to do with an abandoned carnival site located at the outskirts of town, the carnival site to which she is nonetheless drawn.