Gerald has been preparing to die. During the last of his three hospital stays, he has drawn up a last will and testament, a living will, assigned a health care proxy, and arranged his own cremation. He has thrown out hundreds of photos accrued over his twenty-five years as an actor, boxes of gay porn, all his journals, and acquired a hefty collection of barbiturates for when things got too "icky." Then, from out of nowhere, Gerald's health is revived by the new miracle drugs. His AIDS-related death is put on hold, while, at the same moment, William Weiss reenters his life. A brilliant director and his old boss, Weiss invites Gerald to perform in a play at the Palazzo d'Arte in Sicily. From the first rehearsal, Weiss nurtures the chaos in which he is most at home. Only a few close associates on the play are even aware that Gerald had been so close to dying, a secret he keeps guarded from his fellow actors. Sicily, the Italians, an unexpected romance, and his love of the theater reconnect Gerald with lost joy. Even as his health fails, he finds himself transformed by the ecstasy of everyday life.