Stepping on Roses

During the year Meiji 25 (1892,) Sumi Kitamura is penniless and her brother Eisuke, a womanizer and gambler, constantly leaves them in debt while bringing even more orphaned children home to feed. When her adopted sister, Tomi, becomes ill, Sumi finds that no doctors will help her as they are poor and no one is willing to give her money for medicine to save Tomi. Then as Sumi is crying on the road a handsome man gives her a handkerchief and some money, telling her to stop crying as smiles beckon happiness into her life before disappearing. Later a debt collector turns up at Sumi's house demanding 2000 yen. Eisuke is nowhere to be found and it is revealed that he had been making advances on the debt collector's wife. The man says that he will take away all of Sumi's younger siblings and sell them into slavery. Desperate to save her siblings, Sumi goes to the red light district in an attempt to raise the money in one night. Just when she thinks there's no more hope, a man named Soichiro Ashida appears and says that he will buy her. Sumi goes with him only to find that he was paying her to marry him! They immediately go to the church and afterwards he says that he'll pay for anything she could possibly want, but she has to marry him and not fall for him and that he will never love her. Sumi agrees and they get married.