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THE LAST CHANCE

A TALE OF THE GOLDEN WEST

A Tale of the Golden West

BY

ROLF BOLDREWOOD

AUTHOR OF
ROBBERY UNDER ARMS,' THE MINER'S RIGHT,' THE SQUATTER'S DREAM,'

A COLONIAL REFORMER,' ETC.

Ti A. Browne

London

MACMILLAN AND CO., LIMITED

NEW YORK: THE MACMILLAN COMPANY

All rights reserved

925390

Copyright in the United States of America.

F

CHAPTER I

As a Commissioner of Goldfields, and Police Magistrate, in New South Wales, it is hardly necessary to say that Arnold Banneret's pay was not conspicuously in advance of the necessaries of life. Necessaries which may be thus catalogued : a couple of decent ride-and-drive horses, a light, much-enduring buggy, clothes and books, boots and shoes, bread and butter, for half-a-dozen growing boys and girls — with an occasional trip to the seaside, and a regularly recurring doctor's bill; while the Rev.

while the Rev. Mr. Wilson's quarterly accounts for the eldest boy's board and tuition had also a knack of turning up inconveniently soon, as it appeared to paterfamilias, after his departure to school.

He was leaning against the corner of the police barrack, having just returned from a long official ride with Inspector Falcon, revolving the question of ways and means, or else the conflicting evidence in a knotty, complicated mining case, upon which he had reserved his decision. He had invested all the money he could spare (this was before the

B

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