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Robert Church, Superintendent of the Parramatta Female Factory, takes full advantage of his position. First, there are the opportunities to siphon off supplies and sell them. And the Factory also provides an excellent front for Robert's sly grog business.
But to Robert's mind, the most enjoyable part of the job is access to the young convict women under his care.
There are irritants, of course--Grace O'Leary is chief among them. She has made it her mission to protect the younger women from Robert's nocturnal visits. She even went as far as to organise a riot sparked by Robert's treatment of the women. Robert will deal with Grace in due course. But for now, fresh from visiting one of the Factory's new arrivals, he feels rather pleased with himself.
Until he hears footsteps following him across the courtyard. Turning, he just has time to recognise his assailant before the tip of an awl is rammed upwards into his brain via his right eyeball....