Andre and Marcel are returning from the Algerian war when they stop in a small French cafe. Andre calls his family to tell them of his impending arrival and that he will be bringing Marcel with him due to the latter having saved Andre's life in battle. Andre's family is initially accomodating of his request but change their minds when Andre tells them that Marcel has lost his leg in battle. Andre's mother tells him that Marcel will be not be able to participate in any of the family's activities and his presence will be a depressant to all. Andre says he understands and bids his family goodbye. Andre gets up to leave and reaches for his crutches; it is Andre who was wounded in battle and lost his leg, having heard the way his family truly feels, he decides not to go home after all and leaves the cafe.