The story depicts decadent royalty of Central North India. It is set around the life of Nawabs of Lucknow, local feudal lords, in the eighteenth century. The desire for the game destroys the competency of the characters, and makes them irresponsible in their duties towards their families and society. Two local aristocrats derive immense pleasure in developing chess strategies and ignore the real life invasion by an enemy. Their city falls to British attackers even as they are busy playing a game of chess.