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Grey Town An Australian Story   By:

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First Page:

GREY TOWN

J ROY STEVENS, Print., 1 7 Knox Place, Melbourne

[Illustration: She raised the oar, and brought it down smartly across his knuckles. (See page 190).]

GREY TOWN

An Australian Story

BY

GERALD R. BALDWIN

Author of "Dr. Pat Cassidy," etc.

[Illustration: Publisher's logo]

Wholly set up and printed in Australia.

Registered by the Postmaster General for transmission through the post as a book.

"MESSENGER" OFFICE, ST. PATRICK'S COLLEGE MELBOURNE

1922

Contents

Chapter. Page.

I. THE PRESBYTERY 7

II. MICHAEL O'CONNOR 17

III. THE QUIRKS 26

IV. PROMOTION 36

V. DENIS QUIRK 45

VI. READJUSTMENT 56

VII. "THE OBSERVER" DIES 68

VIII. JOHN GERARD 80

IX. DAYS OF STORM AND STRESS 91

X. RUMOUR, HYDRA HEADED 104

XI. TEMPTATION 112

XII. SYLVIA JACKSON 120

XIII. DENIS REFUSES TO SPEAK 131

XIV. "AND ONE OTHER!" 140

XV. DESMOND GOES UNDER 155

XVI. THE VIRTUE OF GREY TOWN 167

XVII. FATHER HEALY'S MISSION 180

XVIII. THROUGH THE GORGE 186

XIX. "THE FREELANCE" 193

XX. GREAT IS THE TRUTH 199

XXI. THE BISHOP'S SOLUTION 211

XXII. A LINK BROKEN 221

XXIII. A SICK CALL 232

XXIV. DENIS QUIRK'S HOMECOMING 238

XXV. A PROPOSAL 245

XXVI. GOOD AND EVIL 252

POST SCRIPTUM 257

Grey Town.

An Australian Story.

CHAPTER I.

THE PRESBYTERY.

Grey Town looks down on the river and the ocean, its streets climbing up the small hill upon which the town has been built. It is a pleasant place in which to live, where, in winter, the air is warm, and in summer a cool breeze from the ocean tempers the hottest day. At the feet of the town the ocean beats restlessly on the narrow strip of beach that fringes the shore. On the distant horizon one may often see the black smoke, sometimes the hull, shadowy and indistinct, of some passing steamer. But only the smaller steamers or ships can enter the bay, for there are reefs and sand spits, to touch which would mean destruction. Beside the town, the River Grey enters the ocean. When the tide is high, and the river swollen by heavy rains, there is a turmoil of waters at the bar, ocean and river contending for mastery. Then the river, banked up at its exit, overflows the low lands that lie to the east of the town, turning a green valley into a muddy lake. At other times the Grey valley is green and pleasant, excepting where the masses of grey rock from which it has its name jut out over the river.

At the highest summit of the town stands the Catholic church, the presbytery beside it. Years ago, when Father Healy came to his new parish, he found an acre block, vacant and forlorn, the very summit of the highest hill above the town.

"This has been destined for my church. In accordance with precedent, I shall build here," said the priest.

The agent to whom he made the remark laughed doubtingly. He knew Grey Town, man and woman, intimately; the peculiarities of Ebenezer Brown, owner of this plot of land, were well known to him.

"You can whistle for this site. It belongs to Ebenezer Brown," he said.

"Ebenezer Brown has his price, I presume," remarked Father Healy.

"He will sell this land to an ordinary man for twice its real value. To you he will not sell at any price."

"He shall have his price from you. It will be worth four times its real value in a few years. Go and buy the land."

Thus was the site acquired, to the great indignation and consternation of the late owner.

"I might have named my own price if I had known who wanted it," he growled.

"You named your price, exactly double the true value," answered the agent... Continue reading book >>




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