* Three children are playing in a field near their property line (a boy and two girls). It is the mid-nineteenth century in Queensland, Australia.
* Beyond the boundary fence, a figure came out of the swamp. At first, they think he is a native black and then realized he is white. He speaks in ragged, but understandable English, "Do not shoot. I am a British object!"
* Lachlan orders his "prisoner" to follow them and they walk down towards the settlement.
* The spectacle of the three children and the haggard man draws a crowd when they entered the settlement. The twelve-year-old Lachlan likes the spotlight and tells his story over and over of how they had come across the strange fellow.
* Over the course of the afternoon, the man answers some questions. His name was Gemmy Fairley. He was thrown from a passing ship sixteen years before and had...
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