An unnamed protagonist (the Narrator) is summoned to the remote mansion of his boyhood friend, Roderick Usher. Filled with a sense of dread by the sight of the house itself, the Narrator reunites with his old companion, who is suffering from a strange mental illness and whose sister, Madeline is near death due to a mysterious disease. The Narrator provides company to Usher while he paints and plays guitar, spending all his days inside, avoiding the sunlight and obsessing over the sentience of the non-living. When Madeline dies, Usher decides to bury her temporarily in one of his house's large vaults. A few days later, however, she emerges from her provisional tomb, killing her brother while the Narrator flees for his life.