When the Qingarmy occupies the Central Plains of China, Qingminister Tong Yangjia orders General Li Chengdong, who has surrendered to the Qing Dynasty, to wipe out the resistance forces in Guangdong. Defeated and wounded, Chen Zizhuang flees home and entrusts his family to his beloved concubine Zhang Yuqiao. Chengdong arrests the family and, admiring Yuqiao’s beauty, forces Yuqiao to marry him. She has no choice but to agree in order to save the family. Yangjia interrogates the Chens, whose lives are saved thanks to a clever scheme of Chengdong. Refusing to surrender, Zizhuang is tortured to death by Yangjia’s order.
Having married Chengdong, Yuqiao is unhappy. Chengdong does whatever he can to amuse her, but to no avail. On his birthday, a theatrical troupe performs “The Story of Yue Fei.” Yuqiao is much delighted to see that all the actors are in clothes of the Ming Dynasty. By using a clever trick, she has Chengdong wear a Ming costume. Then she earnestly persuades him to remember his loyalty to the previous dynasty and to stop serving the Qing dynasty. Tong Yangjia comes to congratulate Chengdong on his birthday and is infuriated to see him dressed in Ming costume. Yuqiao takes the opportunity to make Chengdong rebel. In the end, Yuqiao commits suicide, immortalizing her name and story.