Lulu is the mistress of a respected, middle-aged newspaper publisher, Dr. Ludwig Schon. One day, she is delighted when an old man, her "first patron," Schigolch, shows up at the door to her apartment. However, when Schön also arrives, she has Schigolch hide on the terrace. Schon breaks the news to Lulu that he is going to marry Charlotte von Zarnikow, the daughter of the Minister of the Interior. Lulu tries to get him to change his mind, but when he discovers the disreputable-looking Schigolch, he leaves.