The story follows two affairs, a generation apart. Nick (Kevin Anderson (actor)), a professor of architecture in upstate New York, comes to an Illinois town to be with his birth mother (Kim Novak) in the final days of her illness; he was adopted and has never met her before. On the first day, he runs into Paul (Bill Pullman), a college friend, whose construction company is demolishing an old, downtown department store where a murder-suicide happened 30 years before. The building is a beautiful cast-iron construction, so Nick wants to study it before the demolition. Paul introduces Nick to his wife, Jane (Pamela Gidley), a photographer who wants to portray the same building. Over the next four days, Nick and Jane's attraction grows, as Nick explores the old building, attends his mother's bedside, and unravels the truth that links both of them with the developing events in his and Jane's life.