My Brilliant Career

1. 	EXT. POSSUM GULLY. DAY
	Crows wheel in the wide, pale summer sky ...

	Beneath them are bare, drought-stricken paddocks, shimmering 
	in the heat and denuded of vegetation except for a few
	scrubby trees. Little puffs of red dust swirl up from the
	parched earth.

	The stillness is broken only by the screeches of the crows as
	they circle ... and settle on the carcass of a cow near a dry
	dam.

	In the distance is a small farmhouse with out-buildings and
	yards where some scraggy cows stand listlessly.

	SYBYLLA's voice starts under.
 
				SYBYLLA 
			(Voice over)
		Possum Gully, Australia, 1897.
 
2. 	EXT. MELVYN FARMHOUSE. DAY
	The old weatherboard farmhouse is in need of repair and paint.
	It has a wide veranda, with sleepout, and a large water tank on
 	the side. The iron roof is rusty.

	At present, the windows and doors are open to catch the
	smallest breeze.
 
	Beyond the open door and windows, SYBYLLA, a skinny girl
	of sixteen-seventeen years old, with a vital if not pretty face,
	paces backwards and forwards, holding a stub of pencil and an
	old exercise book, deep in concentration, oblivious to her 
	surroundings.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Voice over) 
		Dear fellow countrymen, just a few lines
		to let you know that this story is going 
		to be all about me ...
			(SYBYLLA comes to the 
			window, in a world of
			her own.)
		So in answer to many requests, here is 
		the story of my career.
			(SHE stops, considering.)

3. 	INT. FARMHOUSE KITCHEN. DAY
	SYBYLLA moves away from the window, critically considering
	what she has written in her exercise book.

	The kitchen is large, cluttered and impoverished ... with
	faded curtains and old and broken furniture. There is a large 
	iron range on which is a 'fountain': a large black kettle and 
	some flat irons heating. A box of wood is beside the stove. 

	A collection of odd china is on an old-fashioned dresser. 

	Near the large central table is a washing-basket piled high 
	with clothes waiting to be ironed. Half the table is covered with 
	an ironing blanket and sheet on which is a part-ironed shirt. 

	SYBYLLA obviously has been doing the ironing. 

	SHE sits at the table, brushing away the flies.
   
	Suddenly she has an inspiration. SHE smiles to herself as she 
	starts writing.
   
	C.U. on her hand as she writes the first time. 

				SYBYLLA 
		My ... brilliant career ...

	SHE continues writing, smiling to herself smugly.

				SYBYLLA 
		I make no apology...for being 
		egotistical... because I am!

	SHE grins, self-satisfied, as she writes, not hearing a 
	desperate call, off.

				FATHER
			(ov) (off) 
		Sybylla! 

	CUT TO
 
4. 	EXT. THE HOME PADDOCK/YARDS. DAY 
	In the yard to the side of the house, FATHER, a middle-aged 
	man who was once handsome, and a younger brother, HORACE, 
	about fifteen years old, are struggling to get a cow back 
	on its feet. They sweat in the intense heat. The cow gives a weak 
	protesting moo and sinks back to the ground.

	A wind has begun to rise, and the dust is billowing around 
	them. FATHER looks up to the reddening sky and blurred horizon 
	anxiously, and calls again. 

				FATHER 
		Sybylla! 

	CUT TO
 
5. 	INT. THE KITCHEN. DAY 
	SYBYLLA, immersed and unaware of the curtains flapping and 
	the darkening sky of the approaching dust storm, pauses to 
	consider her next paragraph.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		I have always known...that I belonged...to 
		the world of art ... 

	CUT TO
 
6. 	EXT. TRACK TO HOUSE. DAY 
	Coming towards the house is a dray in which are MOTHER, 
	GERTIE, pretty girl of about fourteen, STANLEY, a young boy, 
	and AURORA, a toddler, and TWO NEIGHBOURS who are giving 
	them a lift home from church. MOTHER, a worn-looking 
	woman who looks older than her thirty-eight years, clutches 
	her hat and looks anxiously at the darkening sky. 

	The wind has risen, and the dust swirls around blindingly as 
	the dray comes to a stop at the side of the house. 

	MOTHER and family hastily get down ... 

	CUT TO

7. 	INT. KITCHEN. DAY 
	SYBYLLA dreams on. The curtains are beginning to flap wildly. 

				SYBYLLA
		...the world of literature ... and the 
		world of music ... 

	CUT TO

8. 	EXT. THE YARD/VERANDA. DAY 
	The dray is driving off in the dust-storm.

	MOTHER directs the CHILDREN as they hurry towards the house.

	GERTIE and STANLEY run to the clothes-line to collect the 
	washing which is flapping wildly.

				MOTHER 
			Take those into the house! Hurry!

	MOTHER hurries onto the veranda with AURORA and going to an 
	open window, slams it shut.

	GERTIE and STANLEY are hurrying in with the washing. THEY 
	pass MOTHER who is shutting another window. SHE looks in. 

				MOTHER
		Sybylla!!! 

	CUT TO

9. 	INT. THE KITCHEN. DAY 
	SYBYLLA starts up guiltily. Her first impulse is to hide the book 
	... which she hastily shoves under the unironed washing as 
	she gets up.

	In the background FATHER and HORACE can be seen trying 
	to drive some weak cows to shelter. HE looks towards the 
	house, angrily.

				FATHER 
			(Shouting) 
		Sybylla! You get out here! 

	SYBYLLA runs to the door.

				SYBYLLA 
		I'm coming!
 
10. 	EXT. THE YARD. DAY 
	The dust storm is on them, noisily, blindingly. SYBYLLA struggles 
	across the yard to help. GERTIE and STANLEY are trying to 
	unpeg the washing. MOTHER is desperately trying to close 
	doors and windows.
 
11. 	INT. THE PARLOUR. NIGHT 
	This is the "best room". There are a few remaining good pieces
 	of furniture and relics of a more genteel past, but now it all 
	looks shabby and neglected. A lamp stands on a small table.

	On top of an old upright piano are several family photographs.

	SYBYLLA is sitting at the piano, moodily thumping out a 
	simple tune from memory. It is "her tune" in which she takes 
	out her feelings of desperation and frustration with life. She 
	does not seem to notice that the piano is badly out of tune and 
	some notes stick.
 
12. 	INT. THE KITCHEN. NIGHT 
	The sound of the piano carries over.
 
	FATHER, exhausted, is asleep on a chair by the stove. MOTHER 
	is nearby mending. AURORA is playing with a cat. 

	GERTIE is now doing the ironing. She returns one flat iron to 
	the stove and takes up another.
 
	HORACE is at the table with STANLEY, helping him with his 
	homework.
   
	MOTHER comes to what is evidently a difficult decision. SHE 
	puts down her sewing and rises.
 
13. 	INT. THE PARLOUR. NIGHT 
	SYBYLLA continues to thump out her tune.

	MOTHER comes in and goes to her. SYBYLLA ignores her 
	presence. MOTHER hesitates. This will be difficult ... 

				MOTHER 
		Sybylla ... I want to talk to you. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Talk away.
 
				MOTHER 
		You're a young woman now ... I have been 
		thinking about this a great deal ... We 
		can't afford to keep you any longer ...

	SYBYLLA stops playing and sits silently glaring in front of her.

				MOTHER 
		Do you think you could earn your own 
		living? 

				SYBYLLA 
		Of course.
 
				MOTHER 
		And how would you do that? 

	SYBYLLA turns to face her mother defiantly. 

				SYBYLLA 
 		I'd like to be a pianist.

				MOTHER 
		Oh Sybylla! That takes years of practice 
		... You know we can't afford it.

				SYBYLLA 
		You've thought of something already, 
		haven't you?
 
				MOTHER 
			(A beat) 
		I've ... arranged a position for you ... 

				SYBYLLA 
		A position?
 
				MOTHER 
		As a general servant. 

				SYBYLLA 
			(Aghast) 
		A servant! I won't! 

				MOTHER 
		We have no choice ...

				SYBYLLA 
			(With rising anger) 
		You just want to get rid of me! 

				MOTHER 
		I must do what I feel is right ... 
		Believe me, I've prayed to God for 
		guidance ...

	SYBYLLA rises angrily and glares at her mother.

				SYBYLLA 
		This is what God told you to do?...God be
		damned!!!
 
	SHE stamps out furiously.
 
14. 	INT. MAIN BEDROOM. NIGHT 
	FATHER is trying to sleep. MOTHER, beside him in bed, has 
	been shocked and worried by Sybylla.

				MOTHER 
		It's a wonder God didn't strike her dead 
		at my feet! 

				FATHER 
		Same as all your damned family...illusions 
		of grandeur.

				MOTHER 
			(Tearful) 
		To have such a daughter ... useless, 
		plain and Godless! What can I do?
 
15. 	EXT. THE VERANDA. NIGHT 
	GERTIE and SYBYLLA in their night-dresses are at the end of 
	the veranda, outside the sleepout, leaning on the railing. 

	It is a hot, silent night. A dog barks in the distance. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Oh Gertie, I want to do great things, not 
		be a servant! ... I hate this life ... We 
		should never have left the mountains.

				GERTIE 
		It's not father's fault ... You can't 
		blame him for the drought.

	SYBYLLA looks out over the bare moonlit paddocks.

				SYBYLLA 
		Don't you ever dream there's more to life 
		than this? Don't you want to meet people 
		and talk about books and words and have -- 
		visions? ... Gertie, I can't settle for a 
		new dress and a picnic now and then ... 
		living out in the bush for the rest of 
		my life! ... I might as well be dead. 

				GERTIE 
		Oh Syb, don't say things like that.

				SYBYLLA 
		Why doesn't mother understand? Why doesn't 
		anyone?
 
				GERTIE 
		I think you're the nicest, cleverest girl 
		in the whole entire world.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		I'm not! I'm mad! ...It'd be better if I 
		didn't think at all.
 
16.	EXT. THE COWSHED. DAY 
	SYBYLLA is trying to coax some milk from a half-starved cow, 
	leaning against its flank.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Voice over) (To herself) 
		What's the sense of anyone like me? No 
		training, no money, no time to study or 
		practise ... Just two states of existence, 
		work and sleep ...
 
				MOTHER 
			(Voice over) 
		Sybylla!
 
	SYBYLLA comes out of her reverie and freezes as MOTHER comes 
	from the house.

				MOTHER 
		Sybylla, why do you never answer when I 
		call? ... I want you to fetch your father.

	GERTIE, coming behind MOTHER, goes to take over the milking.

				GERTIE 
		It's all right. I'll do it.

	SYBYLLA gets up abruptly, brushes past her MOTHER and marches 
	out of the shed.

	GERTIE sits to continue the milking while MOTHER watches 
	SYBYLLA with exasperation ... and some guilt.
 
17. 	EXT. A SMALL COUNTRY PUB. DAY 
	The pub is a single-storeyed building with a veranda, in a 
	seemingly empty landscape.
    
	SYBYLLA has tied her horse and trap to the hitching rail. 
	She goes along the veranda to the pub doorway.
 
18. 	INT. COUNTRY PUB. DAY 
	A GROUP OF MEN is clustered at the bar in the dim, cool bar 
	room, drinking and talking to the large BARMAN. 

	SYBYLLA comes to the doorway and looks around. 

	THE BARMAN notices her silhouette in the doorway. 

	The other MEN stop talking and turn to look. 

				BARMAN
		Looking for your dad, are you, girlie? 
		Just missed him. Left with the 
		schoolmaster. 

				MAN
		Yes. The blind leading the blind.

	There is general laughter ... as SYBYLLA turns away.
 
19. 	EXT. SMALL COUNTRY PUB. DAY 
	SYBYLLA, grimfaced, gets into the trap and turns for home.
 
20. 	EXT. ALONG A TRACK. LATE AFTERNOON 
	FATHER and MR HARRIS, a portly schoolteacher, are arm in 
	arm, reeling along the track, singing. 

	The trap comes up behind them.

	SYBYLLA reins in and watches with a mixture of hurt, 
	disgust and desperation as her father falls over in the 
	dust ... but she's used to this.
 
21. 	EXT. THE FARMYARD. DAY 
	At the woodpile, SYBYLLA is viciously chopping wood -- 
	taking out her anger and frustration. 

	GERTIE is stacking the wood nearby.
   
	MOTHER, who has been collecting the mail from the mailbox, 
	comes towards them. SHE carries a letter. SYBYLLA ignores 
	her.
 
				MOTHER 
		I've had a letter from your grandmother. 
		You'd better read it.

	SYBYLLA isn't interested. She continues chopping. MOTHER 
	hands the letter to GERTIE who looks at it.

				GERTIE 
		She says she's sorry to hear you're such 
		a source of grief and annoyance ... and 
		she thinks you might be in danger of -- 
		um -- "forming ties beneath you ..." 

	SYBYLLA keeps chopping.

				GERTIE 
			(Reading) 
		"I think therefore as you have your hands 
		full, the best idea is for ..." 
			(Suddenly, almost shouting) 
		Oh, Syb! You're to go to Gran -- to 
		Caddagat! 

	SYBYLLA grabs the letter and hastily scans it. SHE can hardly 
	believe it... then ecstatically flings her arms around GERTIE. 
	They hug each other laughing ... ignoring MOTHER who turns and 
	silently walks back to the house.
 
22. 	EXT. POSSUM GULLY. DAY 
	SYBYLLA runs ecstatically over the brown, dusty paddocks, 
	shouting to the world.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		I'm going to Caddagat! I'm going to 
		Caddagat! I'm going to Caddagat!
 
23. 	EXT. MONARO COUNTRYSIDE. DAY 
	A COBB & CO. coach is travelling through lush, rolling hills.
 
24. 	EXT. BUTLER'S STORE. DAY 
	The small country store, among the hills, is also the coach station.
 
	Some carts and traps, including the Caddagat buggy, are hitched 
	outside. A number of locals are also awaiting the arrival of the 
	coach. Chased by dogs and small boys, it rumbles up to the front 
	of the store.
   
	A MAN goes to hold the horses, and BILL BUTLER, the storekeeper, 
	comes out and calls a greeting to the driver who throws him the 
	mailbag. There is some bustle and excitement as the steps are 
	put down and some passengers descend and are met.

	FRANK, a young man, dandified, fresh-faced, an obvious "new 
	chum", scans the arrivals, looking for someone. HE eyes a 
	stately well-dressed young lady and goes forward expectantly, 
	but she is met by someone else. HE peers into the coach, then 
	looks around perplexed. He calls to the DRIVER. 

				FRANK 
		I say, driver! 

				DRIVER
		Yes, sir?
 
				FRANK 
		I believe Mrs. Bossier's granddaughter 
		was supposed to have been on the coach.

	The DRIVER motions with his hand to SYBYLLA, beside him on the 
	driver's seat. She has been disentangling her bag from the luggage 
	on top. Hearing FRANK's query, she grins happily down at him.

				SYBYLLA 
		That's me ...
 
	SHE throws her bag to him and jumps down ... sunburnt, wind blown 
	and ecstatic.

	FRANK is taken aback. This isn't what he expected. But he 
	remembers himself and takes off his hat.

				FRANK 
		Oh -- Miss Melvyn? 

				SYBYLLA 
		Yes. Where's Uncle J.J.?

				FRANK 
		He's away on business ...but -- um -- I'm 
		Frank Hawden.

				SYBYLLA 
		What are you? 

				FRANK 
		A jackaroo ... 

				SYBYLLA 
			(Laughs) 
		Poetry!

				FRANK 
			(Uncertainly)
		Yes ... um ... 

				SYBYLLA 
			(Calls to driver)
		'Bye, Jack. 

				DRIVER
		'Bye, missie.
    
	The stage starts up again, as FRANK, looking somewhat disappointed, 
	picks up SYBYLLA's bag and leads the way towards his buggy at the 
	side of the store.
 
25. 	EXT. HILLY COUNTRYSIDE. DAY 
	The buggy goes higher into the countryside.

	SYBYLLA looks at the distant mountains with excitement. SHE 
	becomes aware of FRANK's glances. 

				SYBYLLA 
		You're a new chum?
 
				FRANK 
		Certainly not. I've been in the colony 
		well over three months.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Cheerfully) 
		Still wet behind the ears! 

	FRANK feels affronted.
 
26. 	EXT. ROAD TO CADDAGAT. DAY
	They are driving through high, rolling countryside of green
	valleys, great stands of gums, and soft distances of mountains 
	merging with blue sky.

	SYBYLLA is devouring the scenery with her eyes. 

	FRANK looks at her speculatively.
 
				FRANK 
		I certainly was surprised back there...
		your being Mrs Bossier's granddaughter.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Not taking much notice) 
		Were you? 

				FRANK 
		Yes ... I mean you're not at all like them. 
		Mrs Bossier or your Aunt -- Mrs Bell. 
		They're so awfully good looking.

	SYBYLLA turns to him as this registers.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Overpolite) 
		Indeed?
 
				FRANK 
		Um. Never mind. You seem like a good 
		sort. We'll have some fun.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Heavily ironic) 
		I'm glad I meet with your approval Mr 
		Hawden, in even a small degree. 

	FRANK happily accepts this at face value.
 
27. 	EXT. THE HILLSIDE ABOVE CADDAGAT. DAY 
	The buggy comes over the crest of the hill. Down in the hollow,
	surrounded by beautiful shady gardens, is a gracious old homestead.

	In the buggy, SYBYLLA suddenly stands up, throws out her arms 
	and shouts ecstatically. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Caddagat!!!
 
28. 	EXT. CADDAGAT HOMESTEAD. DAY 
	The drive leads through the garden to the front of the homestead 
	... a rambling, single storey building, surrounded by a creeper-
	covered veranda.

	FRANK pulls up the buggy in front of the main entrance, and 
	GRANDMOTHER, a stately dowager in her sixties, comes forward to 
	embrace SYBYLLA as she gets out.

	With GRANDMOTHER is AUNT HELEN a beautiful, graceful, sad-faced 
	woman in her late thirties.

	A young MAID in uniform, BIDDY, and a YARDMAN come forward to 
	collect the luggage and take care of the horse. 

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Sybylla! Welcome, my dear, welcome. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Grandma! ... Aunt Helen ... 

	AUNT HELEN, in turn, hugs SYBYLLA, warmly.
 
29. 	INT. SYBYLLA'S ROOM. DAY 
	It is a pretty, sunny, feminine room, opening onto the veranda, 
	with elegant furniture. With the paintings and ornaments are some 
	childhood rememberances, including a rocking horse. SYBYLLA, with 
	AUNT HELEN, is looking around delightedly, remembering her 
	childhood. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Oh, I remember this! 

	AUNT HELEN smiles at her.
 
30. 	INT. THE DINING ROOM. NIGHT 
	The dining-room is lit by candlelight which shines softly on 
	glistening silver and glass and the crisp white linen on the 
	large dining table -- in the centre of which is an elaborate 
	centrepiece of luscious fruit.

	At the table sit FRANK, GRANDMOTHER, AUNT HELEN and SYBYLLA, who 
	is overwhelmed by this opulence, the formality, the graceful 
	manners of the others and the deft service of ETHEL, the uniformed 
	parlour maid.
   
	GRANDMOTHER gently attracts her attention, and says grace.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		For the gracious bounties we are about to 
		receive, may the good Lord make us truly 
		thankful. Amen. 

				FRANK 
		Amen.
 
	GRANDMOTHER carves the joint and passes the plates while 
	ETHEL offers vegetables.
 
	SYBYLLA feeling self-conscious and awkward, helps herself frugally.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Take some more, dear.

	SYBYLLA does so, aware of FRANK's eyes on her while GRANDMOTHER 
	hands him a plate of meat ... 

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Will this be sufficient for you Frank? 

				FRANK 
		Thank you, Mrs Bossier.

	HE turns to help himself to vegetables with a conscious, self-
	assured flourish -- for SYBYLLA's benefit. 

	Under, GRANDMOTHER chats on.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Helen, were there any patterns you liked 
		in the catalogue?

				AUNT HELEN 
		There were two lovely ones for Sybylla. 

				GRANDMOTHER 
		That's a good idea ... What colour do you 
		think?

				AUNT HELEN 
		Sky blue or pretty pink?

				GRANDMOTHER 
		And what would you like, Sybylla? 

				SYBYLLA 
			(Grins) 
		Lemon. 

	FRANK raises an eyebrow.
 
31. 	INT. CADDAGAT DRAWING ROOM. NIGHT 
	It is another spacious, elegant room. FRANK, GRANDMOTHER and 
	AUNT HELEN are drinking after-dinner tea while SYBYLLA sits at 
	the grand piano happily playing her favourite piece now 
	without aggression and with evident enjoyment. 

	She plays well. GRANDMOTHER exchanges an approving glance and 
	nod with AUNT HELEN. FRANK also evidently approves.
 
32. 	INT. SYBYLLA'S BEDROOM. NIGHT 
	AUNT HELEN is placing a lighted lamp beside SYBYLLA's turned-down 
	bed.

	SYBYLLA, in her night-dress, is looking at two framed photographs 
	on the mantelpiece ... a handsome young man and a beautiful young 
	lady.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		Oh, Aunt Helen, you look so beautiful. 

				AUNT HELEN 
		Don't you recognise your own mother? This 
		was her room, remember, when she was 
		young ... That's your father -- before 
		they married. They made a handsome couple.

	SHE kisses SYBYLLA who stares at the photographs.

				AUNT HELEN 
		I'll see you in the morning. Sleep well.

	SHE kisses her, picks up a second lamp and goes out. SYBYLLA 
	continues to look at the photograph of her mother.
 
33. 	INT. THE KITCHEN, POSSUM GULLY. NIGHT 
	MOTHER sits before the dying fire in the stove, mending by 
	the light of one small lamp. She pauses to give the stove a 
	poke, and the light glows on her tired, worn face, the 
	hopelessness, the poverty ...
 
34. 	EXT. THE VERANDA, CADDAGAT. NIGHT 
	AUNT HELEN is passing along the veranda, carrying a lamp. She 
	pauses at the window of SYBYLLA's room (where the lamp is 
	still lit) and glances in through the softly billowing 
	curtains.
 
35. 	INT. SYBYLLA'S ROOM. NIGHT 
	SYBYLLA is sitting on the edge of the bed holding the photo of 
	her mother, quietly crying.
   
	AUNT HELEN comes through the French windows, goes to SYBYLLA, 
	sits beside her and puts her arm around her shoulders.

				AUNT HELEN 
		What's all this about?

				SYBYLLA 
		Mother ... And I'm useless -- and ugly. 
		And nobody loves me ... You don't 
		understand ... no-one does ...
 
				AUNT HELEN 
		Oh, Sybylla ... stop all this and into 
		bed with you!

	SHE helps SYBYLLA into bed, and sits beside her.

				AUNT HELEN 
		I do understand, Sybylla ... There's any 
		amount of love and good in the world, you 
		know ... but it doesn't just come to you. 
		You have to search for it ... And being 
		misunderstood is a trial we must all bear 
		... You have a wildness of spirit which 
		is going to get you into trouble all your 
		life. So you must learn to control it -- 
		and try to cultivate a little more 
		feminine vanity, eh? 

				SYBYLLA 
			(A wry grin) 
		I've given up.
 
				AUNT HELEN 
		Plain looks never stopped anyone from 
		being intelligent, or witty, or making 
		friends ... Being beautiful is no 
		guarantee of success in anything. 
			(She smiles) 
		But it does help a little. Now -- I 
		have a plan. 

				SYBYLLA 
		You'll never make me more than middling ugly. 

				AUNT HELEN 
		We'll see. But first of all, no more 
		looking in the mirrors ...
 
	AUNT HELEN rises and covers the mirror.

				AUNT HELEN 
		... and no more thinking about yourself.
 
36. 	INT. SYBYLLA'S BEDROOM. DAY 
	BIDDY enters carrying a tray. SYBYLLA is sitting in bed with a 
	ghostly face mask and gloved hands.

	BIDDY stares at the apparition. SYBYLLA jokingly makes "ghost" 
	noises at her. BIDDY laughs.
 
	TIME LAPSE
 
	SYBYLLA is sitting at her shrouded dressing-table, her hands 
	soaking in a bowl of water containing slices of lemon. She has 
	a book propped in front of her, and is trying to read, while 
	BIDDY brushes her hair.

				BIDDY
			(Counting strokes) 
		78, 79, 80, 81 ... 

				SYBYLLA 
			(Protesting) 
		I can't read!
 
				BIDDY
			(Irish) 
		It's your face you should be attending to 
		not that there book!
			(Relentlessly)
		... 82, 83, 84, 85, 86 ...
 
37. 	EXT. THE BOTTOM OF THE GARDEN. DAY 
	On the banks of a creek, SYBYLLA, in a hat and gloves, is 
	sitting under a tree reading poetry to herself, enjoying 
	the lushness and the peace.

	FRANK peers around a bush, sees her and starts tiptoeing 
	towards her. He holds a small bunch of wildflowers. SYBYLLA, 
	annoyed by the interruption, glares as he confronts her.

	FRANK produces the flowers with a smug flourish. 

				SYBYLLA 
			(Falsely) 
		Oh, Mr Hawden. 

				FRANK 
		Frank.
 
	HE presents the flowers which she takes as though overwhelmed.

				SYBYLLA 
		How terribly kind. 

				FRANK 
			(Smugly) 
		Not at all.
 
	FRANK bows and goes, leaving, he feels, a good impression.

	SYBYLLA makes sure FRANK has gone, then throws the flowers in 
	the creek ... and returns to her book. 

	C.U. of the flowers floating away on the smooth surface of 
	the water.
   
	The surface begins to be pitted with rain drops ... The sun is 
	clouded over and suddenly the rain begins to pour down. There 
	is some thunder.
  
	SYBYLLA has dropped her book under the tree ... and is running, 
	dancing, whirling in the downpour, arms outstretched, face 
	uplifted. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Rain! Rain! Rain!
 
38. 	INT. SYBYLLA'S BEDROOM. DAY 
	SYBYLLA is in bed with a cold, sneezing. GRANDMOTHER is beside 
	the bed, stirring a hot drink.
 
				GRANDMOTHER 
		Now you see the consequences of wild and 
		extravagant behaviour.

				SYBYLLA 
		You'd have done the same if you hadn't 
		seen rain for years!

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Hm. Well, a few days in bed will keep you 
		out of mischief.
 
	GRANDMOTHER hands SYBYLLA the drink. 

	AUNT HELEN comes in carrying a basket of apples which she 
	puts on the bedside table.

				AUNT HELEN 
		Harry has brought you some apples, all 
		the way from Five Bob Downs.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		You remember Harry, dear?

	SYBYLLA takes an apple from the basket and begins to eat it.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		Old Podgy. 
			(Dismissing him) 
		Huh!
 
				GRANDMOTHER 
		Sybylla! Harry and Miss Augusta are the 
		most important people in the district!

				SYBYLLA 
			(Happily) 
		Too good for me then! I'm only good 
		enough for the local boy who has pimples 
		and stinks. 

	GRANDMOTHER and AUNT HELEN exchange slightly shocked glances.

				GRANDMOTHER 
 			(Firmly) 
		I shall make quite sure my granddaughter 
		will never marry a man unworthy of her. 
		Don't worry!

				SYBYLLA 
		I don't. I'm not marrying anyone. I'm 
		going to have a career.

				GRANDMOTHER 
			(A little tartly) 
		A career? What in? 

	SYBYLLA pauses in mid-bite, and shrugs.

				SYBYLLA 
		Oh, literature, music, art -- maybe the 
		opera. I've not made up my mind yet.
 
39. 	EXT. CADDAGAT VERANDA. DAY
	GRANDMOTHER and HELEN are coming from SYBYLLA's room. 
	GRANDMOTHER is carrying the basket of apples ... and 
	looking grim.
 
				GRANDMOTHER 
		I fear, Helen, we underestimated her 
		mother's problem ... I wish Julius were 
		here. She needs a man's hand.

	SHE Sees ETHEL nearby and hands her the basket of apples.
 
40. 	EXT. CADDAGAT PADDOCK. DAY 
	A good looking young horseman, HARRY BEECHAM, is coming through 
	the hills into the Caddagat home paddocks.
 
	As he nears a large flowering tree, he becomes aware of someone 
	singing and reins in. The song, Irish and rather lewd, is coming
	from somewhere among the branches. HE dismounts to inspect.

	In the branches, SYBYLLA is sitting, picking the blossom and 
	singing loudly, happily to herself. HARRY looks up at her, 
	grinning. 

				HARRY 
		Do you need a hand?

	SYBYLLA is jolted our of her reverie. She looks down at his 
	smiling face beneath her, and hastily adjusts her skirts.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Coldly) 
		No, thank you.
     
	SYBYLLA starts climbing out of the tree.

				HARRY 
		You're new here, aren't you? Do you work 
		at the house?
 
				SYBYLLA 
			(With an Irish accent) 
		I'd be obliged to you, sir, if you'd take 
		yourself out of the way, unless you want 
		me feet in your big fat face.

	SHE jumps down. HARRY catches her. SHE tries to pull away.

				HARRY 
			(Grinning) 
		How about a reward? 

				SYBYLLA 
		Let me go!
 
	HARRY lets her go, with a token smack on her bottom. She glares 
	as he stoops to help her pick up the flowers. 

				SYBYLLA 
			(Irish accent) 
		You should be ashamed, a gentleman like 
		yourself peeping and prying on innocent 
		girls! You'll have me sacked, you will!

	SYBYLLA starts to run off. HE calls after her.

				HARRY 
		What's your name?
 
				SYBYLLA 
			(Cheekily) 
		Wouldn't you like to know?
 
41. 	INT. SYBYLLA'S BEDROOM. NIGHT 
	SYBYLLA, her hair arranged attractively, is wearing a beautiful 
	new gown. She is being fussed over by BIDDY who fastens the 
	last hooks, and AUNT HELEN who settles the last strand of hair. 
	They look at their handiwork with approval. 

				SYBYLLA 
		How does it look? 

				BIDDY 
		It's a picture you are! 

				SYBYLLA 
		Can I see?
 
				AUNT HELEN 
		What do you think, Biddy? 

				BIDDY 
		Well, ma'am, I don't think the glass will 
		break. 

	They chuckle... and AUNT HELEN uncovers the mirror.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		Biddy, I wouldn't ...

	SHE sees herself ... and is momentarily struck dumb. In the 
	mirror is a stranger.

				AUNT HELEN 
		I hope you can say something to your 
		Uncle Julius.

				SYBYLLA 
		Uncle J.J? He's here? ... 

	Diverted, she starts for the door ... then flings her arms 
	around HELEN. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Oh, Aunt Helen ... thank you! 

	AUNT HELEN hugs her.

				AUNT HELEN 
		You see? Beautiful.
 
42. 	INT. CADDAGAT DRAWING ROOM. NIGHT 
	SYBYLLA opens the double-doors, looking for UNCLE J.J. 
	AUNT HELEN follows her.

	UNCLE J.J., a jolly, bearded, middle-aged man, is talking with 
	GRANDMOTHER, who looks up as SYBYLLA enters. 

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Oh Sybylla ... 

				UNCLE J.J.
		There she is!
     
	SYBYLLA goes to UNCLE J.J. and hugs him.

				SYBYLLA
		Uncle J.J.!

				UNCLE J.J. 
		By George, eh! You've grown into a 
		goodlooking young lady! 

	HE kisses her.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		You've changed, no doubt about that.

				SYBYLLA 
		You haven't. Your kisses still smell of 
		whisky and cigars.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		That's what makes 'em irresistible.

	They laugh together -- it's an old private joke. 

	The door opens and FRANK and HARRY, dressed for dinner, enter.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Ah, come in, gentlemen. Harry, I'm 
		delighted you could join us this evening.
 
	HARRY sees SYBYLLA and stops in astonishment. SYBYLLA recognises 
	HARRY and is just as surprised.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Well, for goodness sake! Frank, get him 
		a drink. Sybylla, this is our dear friend, 
		Harry Beecham. Harry, you remember my 
		granddaughter? 

				HARRY 
		Miss Melvyn. I never would have 
		recognised you. 

	SYBYLLA is overpolite, playacting her social role.

				SYBYLLA 
		Nor I you, Mr Beecham. I believe I have 
		to thank you for the apples you sent 
		when I was ill. 

	SHE turns to FRANK, gracefully including him.

				SYBYLLA 
		... and Frank ... he's very good at 
		giving me flowers, aren't you, Frank?

	FRANK looks embarrassed, not knowing how to take this.

				FRANK 
		Yes ... well ... yes.
 
43. 	INT. CADDAGAT DINING ROOM: NIGHT 
	There is general conversation at the dinner table -- while HARRY 
	and SYBYLLA look at each other surreptitiously. SHE is amused 
	at his evident discomforture.
 
				UNCLE J.J. 
		The drought up country's not broken yet. 
		Things are worse. Saw a lot of 
		unfortunate fellows on the road heading
		south.
 
				GRANDMOTHER 
		Yes, we've noticed more of them calling 
		in here for food.
 
				UNCLE J.J. 
		Very bad, very bad.
 
				SYBYLLA 
			(With a glance at Harry) 
		I was approached by one of them today ... 
		a very ill mannered sort ... while I was 
		picking blossom.

	HARRY glances at her, apprehensively.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Goodness, dear!
 
				SYBYLLA 
		He was very forward. He wanted to kiss me. 

				FRANK 
		You should have called me. I'd have taken 
		care of him!

				SYBYLLA 
			(Smiling at him cheesily) 
		I'm sure you would have, Frank. But I 
		can look after myself.
 
				UNCLE J.J. 
			(Chuckles) 
		Good girl! That's the sort we want, eh, 
		Harry?
 
				HARRY 
		Absolutely. 

	Under, ETHEL has come in hurriedly. SHE goes to GRANDMOTHER and 
	whispers to her. GRANDMOTHER nods and starts to get up.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		I fear Mrs Hickey's decided that now is 
		an appropriate time to have her baby. I 
		promised to help. Excuse me.

	The GENTLEMEN rise.

				AUNT HELEN 
		Mother, can't I go?
 
				GRANDMOTHER 
		No, no, dear ... Enjoy yourselves. 
		Goodnight.
     
	UNCLE J.J. kisses her on the cheek.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		Goodnight, mother.
 
	There is a chorus of "goodnights" as she goes. The MEN sit 
	down. THEY all visibly relax.) 

				UNCLE J.J. 
		Well, now!

	HE pours a large glass of wine for SYBYLLA and turns to 
	AUNT HELEN who looks hesitant.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		Helen?

				HELEN 
		Well, I...

	HE waves objections aside and pours her a large glass, 
	then passes the decanter to HARRY.

				UNCLE J.J. 
			(Heartily) 
		Help yourself, Harry!
 
44. 	EXT. CADDAGAT VERANDA. NIGHT 
	BIDDY runs up The veranda carrying a full decanter and enters 
	the French doors to the drawing room ... whence comes the 
	sound of everyone singing "Ta-ra-ra-boom-di-ay':
 
45. 	INT. CADDAGAT DRAWING ROOM. NIGHT 
	BIDDY goes to a table and replaces an empty decanter with the 
	full one. Nobody takes any notice.
   
	AUNT HELEN, rather flushed, is at the piano playing with panache.

	FRANK is watching SYBYLLA and UNCLE J.J. dancing 
	enthusiastically. All are singing happily, except HARRY, who 
	watches, drink in hand, smiling broadly.
    
	The song finishes with a flourish. THEY all laugh and applaud.
 
				UNCLE J.J. 
			(Mopping his brow, laughing) 
		Your turn for a song, Harry.

				HARRY 
		I don't know any. 

				SYBYLLA 
		I can give you a song.
 
	SHE grabs FRANK and dances with him while she sings her 
	bawdy Irish song. UNCLE J.J. raises his eyebrows and shouts 
	to her, mid-verse.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		Where on earth did you learn that? 

				SYBYLLA 
		In the pub, of course!

	She continues singing and dancing with FRANK who is bemused 
	and not sure he should be enjoying it ... 

	AUNT HELEN giggles a little, embarrassed, and HARRY grins.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		She's got hidden talents!

				AUNT HELEN 
		You never know what she'll do next! 

				HARRY 
		I seem to recall -- you never could.

	SYBYLLA finishes her song and dance ... and collapses 
	laughing onto a couch, pulling FRANK after her.
 
46. 	EXT. CADDAGAT VERANDA. MORNING 
	GRANDMOTHER, UNCLE J.J. and FRANK are having breakfast.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		From what I hear, Julius, last night was 
		little short of a ... Bacchanalian 
		debauch!

	FRANK keeps his eyes down, disassociating himself from all this.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		Mother, who told you that? You ask Helen ... 

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Helen has one of her sick headaches. 

	SYBYLLA breezes along the veranda to the breakfast table.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Ah ... Sybylla.
 
				SYBYLLA 
			(Brightly) 
		Good morning, grandma ... Uncle J.J... . 

	FRANK doesn't look up.

				UNCLE J.J. 
			(Trying to send her 
			warning signals) 
		'Morning. 

	SYBYLLA looks around as she sits down.

				SYBYLLA 
		Harry?
 
				GRANDMOTHER 
			(Tightly) 
		He left early...I gather your behaviour 
		last night, young lady, left a lot to be 
		desired.
 
				UNCLE J.J. 
		I'd have said Harry enjoyed himself. 

				GRANDMOTHER 
		That's not what I heard. 

	FRANK hastily gets up.

				FRANK 
		Excuse me. 

	HE leaves them.

				UNCLE J.J.
			(Heartily, trying 
			to get over it) 
		Anyway, mother, Syb solved one problem 
		last night. 

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Indeed?
 
				UNCLE J.J. 
		Her future. She could be an actress. 

				GRANDMOTHER 
			(Icily) 
		Are you suggesting -- my granddaughter -- 
		on the stage?

				UNCLE J.J. 
		She certainly has the talent for it. I 
		could introduce her to ...

				GRANDMOTHER 
		I'd rather see her with her hair shorn 
		off and shut up in a convent! ... Don't 
		ever mention the subject again!

	UNCLE J.J. and SYBYLLA exchange silent glances. UNCLE J.J. 
	casts his eyes down and gets on with his breakfast.
 
47. 	EXT. CADDAGAT YARDS. DAY 
	SYBYLLA, disgruntled, is walking down to the sheep yards. 
	FRANK comes up to her ...

				FRANK 
		I say ... I enjoyed myself last night. I 
		thought we got on jolly well together, 
		didn't you?

	SYBYLLA gives him what should be a quelling look. He doesn't 
	notice and continues happily.

				FRANK 
		Miss Melvyn ... Sybylla, I've been 
		thinking. Well, looks aren't everything
		and um ... well ... 

				SYBYLLA 
			(To get rid of him) 
		Come to the point! 

				FRANK 
		Well, now that this fellow Harry has 
		gone, you should pay some heed to my 
		attentions. 

				SYBYLLA 
			(Acid) 
		Attentions or intentions?
 
				FRANK 
		At the conclusion of the coming year, 
		I'll be returning to England. I expect 
		you to return with me as my wife. 

	SYBYLLA stops, looks at him incredulously, then, with a 
	dismissive snort of laughter, turns away and perches 
	herself on the yard fence. FRANK thinks she is shy and 
	overwhelmed. HE joins her on the fence and puts his arm 
	around her.

				FRANK 
			(Self-satisfied) 
		Well, what do you say, eh? 

				SYBYLLA 
			(Tight) 
		Frank -- let me go! 

				FRANK 
			(Happily) 
		Not until I have your answer. 

	HE gives her a squeeze.
  
	Losing her temper and beyond words SYBYLLA shoves him off. 
	HE falls backwards among the sheep ... who scatter noisily.

	SYBYLLA doesn't give a backward glance as she stalks off ...
	leaving him to scramble out, dusty and furious.
 
48. 	INT. CADDAGAT DRAWING ROOM. DAY 

	GRANDMOTHER, enthroned, with AUNT HELEN beside her is 
	lecturing a stormy-faced SYBYLLA.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Well, there is this in your favour, you 
		don't say you're sorry when you're not!

				SYBYLLA 
		Why should I pretend about a person like 
		Frank Hawden?

				GRANDMOTHER 
		You are not prepared to apologise? 

				SYBYLLA 
		He's a conceited fool ...
 
				GRANDMOTHER 
		We were under the impression you liked 
		him.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		Liked him?
 
				GRANDMOTHER 
		He appears to be extremely fond of you. 

	SYBYLLA gives a short laugh of derision. GRANDMOTHER's lips 
	tighten.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Now listen to me, Sybylla. In a few years 
		he'll come into quite a large fortune in 
		England. He comes of a very good family 
		... and would make someone an excellent 
		husband.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		Well, it won't be me! 

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Be realistic, child!
 
				SYBYLLA
		I am! To begin with, I don't love him. 

				GRANDMOTHER 
		That is not the point! 

				SYBYLLA 
		It is to me!
 
				GRANDMOTHER 
		Do you want to be a burden on your family 
		forever, with no status in decent society 
		... nor a home of your own?
 
				SYBYLLA 
			(Furious) 
		I will not be married off to someone I 
		detest, by you or anybody!

	GRANDMOTHER, taken aback, pauses. SHE gets up.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		At times I fear for you, my girl. You are 
		rude to your elders and betters and lack 
		all gentility! ... Very well. You may not 
		be prepared to apologise to Frank, but I 
		expect you to apologise to me... when you 
		have regained your humour and your 
		manners!
 
	GRANDMOTHER nods to AUNT HELEN and leaves the room.

	AUNT HELEN smiles at SYBYLLA as the door closes.

				AUNT HELEN 
		You must learn not to shout at your 
		Grandmother, Sybylla.

				SYBYLLA 
		I didn't mean to. It just surges up in me 
		when she starts on about marriage. She 
		doesn't seem to understand! 

				AUNT HELEN 
		Sybylla, dear, sit down, please. I want 
		to talk to you.

	SYBYLLA sits on the couch next to AUNT HELEN.

				AUNT HELEN 
		Believe me, Sybylla, the best kind of 
		marriage is not love marriage, but 
		friendship marriage. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Friendship?
 
				AUNT HELEN 
		Yes. 
			(With some difficulty)
		You see, your mother married for love and 
		-- I, too, married for love ... My 
		husband isn't dead. He left me for 
		someone else ... left me to live the rest 
		of my life with the shame of being neither 
		wife nor widow nor maid. 

				SYBYLLA 
		But why should you be ashamed?
 
				AUNT HELEN 
		Marriage gives us respectability, as 
		you'll learn. 

				SYBYLLA 
		That is just what men want us to believe 
		... stupid idiots, like Frank Hawden. 

	SHE gets up, angrily.

				SYBYLLA 
		Well, I won't be caught up in it! Not by 
		him or anyone! 
			(Pleading) 
		Aunt Helen, please, please stop trying to 
		marry me off!
 
	AUNT HELEN sighs. Then she reaches to pick up a card from a 
	nearby table.
 
 				AUNT HELEN 
		Well, I suppose I should tear up this 
		invitation then, from Miss Augusta ... 
		for you to stay a few days at Five Bob 
		... Shall I?

				SYBYLLA
			(Grins, a little sheepishly) 
		No.
 
49. 	EXT. THE ROAD TO FIVE BOB. DAY 
	HARRY is driving his sulky along a road through the hills. 
	SYBYLLA sits beside him, enjoying the scenery and the company 
	-- except that now they are alone, she doesn't know what 
	to say nor, evidently, does he. SHE tries to make 
	conversation to break the silence.

				SYBYLLA
		It must have been hard when your father 
		died, Mr Beecham. 

				HARRY 
		Yes.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		I hear you've made some changes? 

				HARRY 
		Yes, Miss Melvyn. Quite a few.
 
				SYBYLLA 
			(Abruptly changing the subject) 
		Can I drive? 

	HARRY hesitates, then gives her the reins. SYBYLLA takes 
	them, and puts the horse into a brisk canter. HARRY holds his 
	hat.
 
50. 	EXT. FIVE BOB DRIVE/EXTERIOR. DAY 
	Where Caddagat was beautiful and cosy, Five Bob Downs is 
	grand and impressive. Acres of gardens and parklike paddocks 
	surround the old two storeyed colonial stone house with its 
	separate kitchen wing and numerous outbuildings.

	A long tree-lined drive sweeps up to the imposing front entrance.

	SYBYLLA has reined back to a respectable trot and HARRY relaxes 
	... as they come up the drive to the doorway. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Whoa, boy, whoa!
 
	The front door is opened by a BUTLER and AUNT GUSSIE, a formidable 
	looking elderly spinster with an abrupt manner, who comes from the 
	front entrance to meet them. She carries a small dog.

	A MAN takes charge of the sulky, and HARRY and SYBYLLA alight, as 
	a MAID comes to collect the luggage.
 
				GUSSIE
		Dear Lucie's daughter .. . Hm. There's 
		little resemblance.
 
				SYBYLLA 
			(Bristling) 
		No. I'm sorry. 

				GUSSIE 
		A pity. Well, come in.
 
	GUSSIE turns to walk into the house. SYBYLLA, annoyed, hesitates.

				GUSSIE
		Come along, child, I'm not going to eat you! 

	GUSSIE walks into the house. HARRY and SYBYLLA follow.
 
51. 	INT. FIVE BOB DRAWING ROOM. NIGHT 
	It is a large, beautifully furnished room. There is a roaring 
	fire in the baronial type fireplace. 

	HARRY stands in front of the fire finishing his port after 
	dinner. SYBYLLA has AUNT GUSSIE's dog on her lap -- as she 
	looks around, impressed.
   
	SHE smiles up at HARRY ... and is not aware of AUNT GUSSIE 
	eyeing her shrewdly.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		I'd forgotten all this. It's like 
		something out of a book!

	HARRY smiles at her, then exchanges a look with GUSSIE, and
	finishes his drink.

				HARRY 
		Well, I think I'll turn in ... Early 
		start tomorrow. Goodnight, Aunt Gussie.
     
	HE goes to her and kisses her goodnight.

				GUSSIE 
		Goodnight, dear.
 
				HARRY 
		Goodnight, Miss Melvyn. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Goodnight, Mr Beecham.
    
	HARRY leaves them. There is a short silence.

				SYBYLLA 
		He always seems so quiet and composed. 

				GUSSIE 
		You don't have to live with him. 

	A pause. 

				SYBYLLA 
		This must be the most beautiful house in 
		the world. 

				GUSSIE 
		Too big, too many corners to dust ... 
		Fancy living in it, do you?
 
				SYBYLLA 
			(Laughs briefly) 
		No! I'd get lost. I wouldn't know what to 
		do with all those servants. I wouldn't 
		even know what groceries to order!

	GUSSIE pauses, then suddenly smiles.
 
				GUSSIE 
		I think another glass of port won't hurt 
		us. 

	SYBYLLA returns GUSSIE's smile and hands over her glass while 
	GUSSIE picks up the port decanter beside her.
 
52. 	EXT. FIVE BOB GARDENS. DAY 
	SYBYLLA and GUSSIE, carrying a small basket, enter a large 
	ornate bird-cage in the gardens.
   
	Many beautifully coloured parrots sweep around them screeching.
 
				GUSSIE 
		Beautiful creatures. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Poor caged-up things!
 
				GUSSIE 
		They're happy enough. Good shelter, 
		plenty to eat, someone to look after them. 

				SYBYLLA 
			(Laughs) 
		Sounds like marriage! 

				GUSSIE 
		You think so, hm?
 
				SYBYLLA 
		Grandma's trying to get me married and 
		out of everyone's way ... She's going to 
		have a job! 

	GUSSIE, who is picking up coloured feathers from the floor 
	of the cage, looks up and returns SYBYLLA's grin.
 
53. 	INT. FIVE BOB MORNING ROOM. DAY 
	This is GUSSIE's own room. Around the walls are evidence of her 
	work in water colours. She is currently working on a "painting 
	in feathers", using coloured birds' feathers to create a 
	landscape which, although in the Victorian mode, is very good.

	SYBYLLA, now obviously at ease with GUSSIE -- who is providing 
	a sympathetic ear -- moves around the room, enchanted by it, 
	chatting unselfconsciously.

				SYBYLLA 
		I think parents of ugly girls should be 
		made to strangle them at birth ... I was 
		born with three defects ... being a girl, 
		being ugly and being clever. 

				GUSSIE 
		Oh? Clever are you?
 
				SYBYLLA 
		I hope so! I'm done for if I'm not ... 
		There has to be something I'm good at. 

				GUSSIE 
		Sure to be!
     
	SHE smiles at SYBYLLA warmly.
 
54. 	EXT. ON THE RIVER. DAY 
	HARRY is unsteadily poling a small dinghy near the banks of 
	a reedy river, while SYBYLLA lies back, elegantly, under a 
	sunshade, and dramatically recites.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Reciting)
		"The cool breeze ripples the river below, 
		And the fleecy clouds float high, 
		And I mark how the dark green gumtrees match 
		The bright blue vault of the sky" 

				HARRY 
		I haven't done this for years.

	SYBYLLA looks at HARRY who is quietly relaxed and contented. 
	Suddenly SHE decides things need stirring up. SHE starts to 
	rock the boat. HARRY looks at her surprised, trying to keep 
	his balance.

				HARRY 
		Hey!
 
	SYBYLLA grins and rocks harder. The boat tips, and they both 
	land in the water.
 
	THEY surface on opposite sides of the boat. HARRY looks around 
	desperately.

				HARRY 
		Sybylla! Syb!
 
	HE sees her splashing on the far side and swims to her. 
	Spluttering, they make their way to the bank and stagger 
	ashore. He helps her up.

	They are in each other's arms, half-laughing, breathless. Their 
	eyes meet and suddenly they are serious, staring at each other, 
	aware of an awakening of strange emotions. Abruptly SYBYLLA 
	pulls away from him, and starts running...

				SYBYLLA 
		Race you home! 

	HARRY stands watching her.
 
55. 	EXT. FIVE BOB DOWNS VERANDA. DAY 
	GUSSIE sits embroidering. SYBYLLA comes out of the house and 
	goes to sit beside her ... GUSSIE notices SYBYLLA's wet hair.

				GUSSIE 
		You didn't stay long at the river. I see 
		you've washed your hair. It'll never dry 
		by dinner. 

				SYBYLLA 
			(Happily) 
		Perhaps I should cut it all off! 

				GUSSIE 
		It'd be a pity to lose your finest asset.
 
  				SYBYLLA 
		My only asset, more like! 

				GUSSIE 
		I wouldn't go quite as far as that.
 
	HARRY comes from the opposite end of the veranda, changed and 
	dry except for his hair. He flops into a chair beside GUSSIE.

				GUSSIE 
		Hm, must be contagious. 

				HARRY 
		What's that?
 
				GUSSIE 
		Washing one's hair ... or did you by 
		chance both have an accident at the 
		river? No, no I don't wish to hear the 
		details ... 
			(She rises) 
		Well, as you both seem able to entertain 
		yourselves, I'll see to dinner.
 
	GUSSIE leaves them. There is a short, awkward silence. HARRY 
	catches her eye and smiles a little shyly at her.

				HARRY 
		I was worried when I couldn't see you ... 
		I thought you might have drowned.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Lightly) 
		What a terrible loss to the world. 

				HARRY 
			(quietly) 
		Yes, it would've been.
 
	THEY exchange a look, slightly embarrassed, aware of what has 
	happened between them.

56. 	INT. FIVE BOB DOWNS DRAWING ROOM. NIGHT 
	SYBYLLA and HARRY are sitting together at the piano, playing 
	a "fun" duet (such as Chopsticks) ... enjoying themselves, and 
	their closeness. Laughing they lean across each other, their 
	hands touching.
 
57. 	INT. FIVE BOB DOWNS STAIRCASE/LANDING. NIGHT 
	SYBYLLA and HARRY are going up the staircase together. They 
	are now very aware of each other.

	HARRY looks at SYBYLLA who stares ahead, embarrassed. THEY 
	stop outside the door of SYBYLLA's room, and pause. 

				HARRY 
			(Stiffly) 
		Goodnight, Miss Melvyn. 

				SYBYLLA 
			(Tight) 
		Goodnight, Mr Beecham.
 
	HARRY gives her a slight bow and goes. SYBYLLA enters her room.
 
58. 	INT. SYBYLLA'S FIVE BOB ROOM. NIGHT 
	SYBYLLA closes the door behind her ... and leans against it 
	trying to sort out her tangled, unfamiliar emotions. She isn't 
	sure what is happening to her -- nor whether she likes it. 
	She is mixed-up, afraid ... and strangely excited. In an 
	anguished uncertainty she gives a little yelp and bites her
	fists.

59.	EXT. YARD AREA. MORNING 
	HARRY is feeding a dog.
   
	A pillow flies out from the direction of SYBYLLA's window,
	above him, landing on his head. HE looks up, then picks up 
	the pillow and runs inside.
 
60. 	INT. FIVE BOB HALL/STAIRWAY. MORNING 
	A MAID is polishing the floor. HARRY runs past her with the 
	pillow and starts up the stairs.
   
	SYBYLLA is waiting for him beyond the landing. She whacks him 
	with another pillow and runs past him down the stairs, past the 
	startled MAID and across the hall. HARRY picks himself up and 
	gives chase.
   
	At the top of the stairs GUSSIE looks down wondering what is 
	happening ... and is not surprised.
 
61. 	INT. THE HOUSE. MORNING 
	HARRY, carrying the pillow, runs through the house, peering 
	into rooms, looking for SYBYLLA.
 
62. 	EXT. FIVE BOB GARDENS. MORNING 
	SYBYLLA runs down a garden path, then stops and turns to see 
	if she is being followed.

	HARRY comes from the house looking for her. He stops, seeing 
	her waiting at the end of the path, and advances slowly, 
	cautiously. When he is within range, SYBYLLA lifts her 
	pillow, nearly knocks him over -- and runs. HE follows.
 
	Another part of the garden. Dogs have joined noisily in the
	chase.  They dodge around trees, and between shrubs
	until, almost exhausted, they both fall over, laughing.
 
	HARRY lies on his back, panting. SYBYLLA gets up to have 
	another go. HE pulls her over on top of him. SHE rolls 
	clear and they both lie exhilarated and exhausted ...
 
63. 	EXT. THE LAWN, FIVE BOB. AFTERNOON 
	SYBYLLA is swinging high on a swing hung from a large old 
	tree on the lawn.

	Nearby, a MAID, serving tea to AUNT GUSSIE at a table, 
	leaves as HARRY joins AUNT GUSSIE. They watch SYBYLLA. 

				HARRY 
		Well?
 
				AUNT GUSSIE 
		She was a precocious child. There's an 
		improvement, but not much. Still too 
		skinny.
 
	HARRY smiles, his eyes never leaving SYBYLLA on the swing.

				AUNT GUSSIE 
		She's very young, Harry, and spirited. 
		Take care. Don't rush anything.
 
64. 	EXT. FIVE BOB FRONT ENTRANCE. DAY 
	UNCLE J.J. is talking to AUNT GUSSIE beside the buggy. A 
	MAID is putting SYBYLLA's bag in the buggy. SYBYLLA and 
	HARRY come from the front door onto the porch.

				SYBYLLA 
		How long will you be away?
 
				HARRY 
		Quite a few weeks. I have to go to the 
		Queensland property first. Then there's 
		the shearing on the Riverina. I'll come 
		over and see you as soon as I get back. 

	THEY go to the buggy ... where a MAN is holding the horse.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		There we are!
 
	AUNT GUSSIE gives SYBYLLA a peck on the cheek. There is 
	now a warmth between them.

				AUNT GUSSIE 
		Bye bye, my dear. Have a safe trip home. 

				SYBYLLA 
			(Smiling at her) 
		Thank you -- Aunt Gussie. 

	HARRY helps her up, while UNCLE J.J. gets into the driver's 
	seat.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		Thanks, Gussie ... Harry. 

				AUNT GUSSIE 
		Bye, bye J.J.
    
	The buggy pulls away and starts off down the drive.
 
 	HARRY and AUNT GUSSIE watch them out of sight.
 
65. 	INT. CADDAGAT DRAWING ROOM. NIGHT 

	AUNT HELEN is playing the piano accompaniment while FRANK 
	sings "Jerusalem" with appropriate dramatic gestures. 

	Nearby GRANDMOTHER, sipping tea, listens with appreciation.

	UNCLE J.J. is sitting near the fire with SYBYLLA who gazes 
	into it, deep in her own thoughts. 

				FRANK
		"Last night as I lay sleeping, 
		There came a dream so fair, 
		I stood in old Jerusalem 
		beside the temple there.
		I heard the children singing, 
		and ever as they sang 
		We thought the voice of angels from 
		Heaven in answer rang.
 
		Jerusalem, Jerusalem, 
		lift up your voice and sing ...
		Hosannah, hosannah, hosannah to our king ..."
 
	UNCLE J.J. is looking quizically at SYBYLLA, and takes 
	the opportunity while FRANK draws breath, to talk to her,
	sotto.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		He's a quiet cove, Harry. Must have been 
		pretty boring for you at Five Bob?

				SYBYLLA 
			(Smiling into the fire) 
		Oh, I survived.

66. 	EXT. CADDAGAT HOMESTEAD. NIGHT 

	The rain is pouring down ...
 
67. 	INT. CADDAGAT DRAWING ROOM. DAY 

	The spring sunshine is streaming through the open French 
	windows.
   
	SYBYLLA is at the piano dreamily playing the trite tune of 
	their duet. Her thoughts are far away.
   
	AUNT HELEN, with a posy of spring flowers from the garden, 
	comes through the French windows. SHE passes SYBYLLA.
 
				AUNT HELEN 
		Spring flowers. Such a heavenly scent! 

	SYBYLLA smiles, hardly noticing, continuing to play.

				AUNT HELEN 
		Really, dear, must you play those vulgar 
		songs. There are so many really nice 
		ones, aren't there? 

	SHE goes out, leaving SYBYLLA to her dreaming.
 
68. 	EXT. CADDAGAT YARD. DAY 
	A SWAGGY is at the yard gate. SYBYLLA is giving him a 
	sugarbag of rations.

	In the background, UNCLE J.J. is beside the buggy watching, 
	smiling, while FRANK checks the harness of two lively 
	horses. 

				SYBYLLA 
			(To SWAGGY) 
		That ought to keep you going for a while. 
		Good luck.
 
	The SWAGGY takes the bag, touches his hat gratefully and goes.

				UNCLE J.J. 
			(Laughing)
		We'll have to watch her. She'll give away 
		half of Caddagat to those fellows. 

	SYBYLLA comes to them.

				SYBYLLA 
		There's so many out of work. Can't 
		something be done for them?

	SHE takes his arm and they start towards the house.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		You see? She'd carve up the place among 
		them and send me on the wallaby.
 
	GRANDMOTHER comes from the house with an envelope in her 
	hand, and a mail bag.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Frank, here's the mail ... unless you 
		have something more?
 
				FRANK 
		No, thank you, Mrs Bossier.
     
	HE takes the mail bag and puts it in the buggy.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		Make sure Butler gives you the right 
		gauge wire this time, eh?

				FRANK 
		Of course, Mr Bossier.
    
	GRANDMOTHER is about to give the envelope to Frank.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Our acceptance for the ball. Harry will 
		probably be collecting their mail, so you 
		can give it to him. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Harry? Harry Beecham? He's back? 

				FRANK 
		Oh yes. Has been for a couple of weeks. 

	As he is about to take the envelope, SYBYLLA snatches it.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		Can I take it?
 
				GRANDMOTHER 
		Well, I suppose Frank wouldn't mind a 
		passenger.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		I'd like to go by myself.
 
				UNCLE J.J. 
		Not on your life, Syb ... not with those 
		horses.
 
69. 	EXT. ROAD TO BUTLER'S. DAY
	SYBYLLA and FRANK in the buggy travel briskly on the track 
	along a ridge. The mountains rise in the distance. FRANK 
	eyes her smugly ... as they come towards a boundary gate.

				FRANK 
		Strange that Harry's not been over. 
		Obviously has no time for you.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Sweetly) 
		Excuse me. Don't go through the gate. 

				FRANK 
		Hm?
 
	HE looks around and hastily pulls up the horses. HE continues 
	to talk as he hands the reins to SYBYLLA and gets out to 
	open the gate.

				FRANK 
		You'll soon realise, you can't do better 
		than me. 

	HE unhooks the gate and pulls it open ... as he continues.

				FRANK 
		I'd love to see the looks at home. 
			(He chuckles) 
		Won't it surprise those English girls.

	SYBYLLA drives the buggy through the gate...and shakes the 
	horses into a trot, leaving FRANK behind. FRANK looks up 
	from closing the gate and runs after her, shouting.

				FRANK 
		Hey, wait! Wait, damn you! Stop!
 
70. 	EXT. BUTLER'S STORE. DAY 
	There are a number of PEOPLE moving in and out of the store. 
	It is mail day. Horses and horse vehicles are tethered 
	outside as previously.
   
	TWO MEN come from the store with a roll of fencing wire and
	put it in the back of the Caddagat buggy.

	SYBYLLA comes out, carrying parcels, followed by HARRY 
	carrying more of her shopping. She goes to the buggy and 
	starts loading the parcels, tight-lipped.
 
	HARRY is hesitant and defensive. HE tries to ease the tension.

				HARRY
		Well -- how have you been? 

				SYBYLLA 
		I'm well. As I was two weeks ago. 

				HARRY 
			(Annoyed) 
		I'm pleased to hear it. 

	Angrily SYBYLLA shoves parcels in the buggy.

				SYBYLLA 
		You promised to come to Caddagat as soon 
		as you got back.

				HARRY 
		I've been busy ... Won't you listen? 

				SYBYLLA 
		You promised!
 
	MRS BUTLER, the storekeeper's matronly wife, comes to her, 
	carrying a large dressbox.

				MRS BUTLER
		Tell Mrs Bossier we still haven't got 
		that muslin she wanted. It'll be here 
		next week. 

				SYBYLLA 
		I'll tell her.
 
	MRS BUTLER gives the box to SYBYLLA who busily packs it, 
	ignoring HARRY.

				MRS BUTLER
		There, that's everything, Miss Melvyn. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Thank you, Mrs Butler. 

				MRS BUTLER
		See you next time. 

	SHE goes back into the store.

				SYBYLLA 
			(To herself) 
		Like all men!
 
				HARRY
			(Angrily) 
		I hear you're like other girls, too. 
		Flirting with every man around ...

				SYBYLLA 
		Who told you that? Frank? And you 
		believed him!

	SYBYLLA snorts angrily and, climbing into the buggy, starts 
	off in a cloud of dust. HARRY watches her go.
 
71. 	EXT. THE TRACK FROM BUTLER'S. DAY 
	SYBYLLA is driving the buggy at a furious pace. The horses 
	are almost out of control.

	Behind her, on horseback, HARRY notices, and gallops after 
	her.
 
	HE catches up and stops the horses.
 
	SYBYLLA sits stonily as HE rides back to her, a little 
	breathless. HE pauses.
 
				HARRY
			(Quietly) 
		I'm sorry.
 
 				SYBYLLA 
		So you should be! 
			(She pauses) 
		I thought we were mates.
 
				HARRY 
		Aren't we?

	HE hesitates, then turns his horse.) 

				HARRY 
		I'll see you at the ball.

	SHE watches him ride off ... with some exasperation.
 
72. 	EXT. CADDAGAT VERANDA. DAY 
	The table is covered in letters, parcels and magazines. 
	GRANDMOTHER, UNCLE J.J. and AUNT HELEN are going through 
	their mail. UNCLE J.J. is chuckling.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		Poor old Frank -- four miles ...in those 
		tight boots!

				GRANDMOTHER 
		It's no joking matter, Julius. 

				UNCLE J.J. 
			(Subdued) 
		No, mother, no, no. 
			(But he sniggers 
			to himself.) 
		Serves him right, though.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		That girl must learn to behave. I've 
		sent her to her room.
 
73. 	INT. SYBYLLA'S CADDAGAT BEDROOM. DAY 
	SYBYLLA sits at her desk moodily, writing.

	AUNT HELEN knocks quietly and opens the door. SHE spies 
	the large dress box Sybylla brought from the store. She 
	puts it on the bed. SYBYLLA ignores her.

				AUNT HELEN 
		Well, ah, did you see Harry at Dogtrap? 

				SYBYLLA 
		Yes.

				AUNT HELEN 
		You know ... 
			(Short embarrassed laugh) 
		I -- I think you might be in love with 
		Harry Beecham. 

	SYBYLLA stops writing.

				SYBYLLA 
		We're friends, that's all. Nothing else. 

				AUNT HELEN 
		Be careful ... how you treat him. 

				SYBYLLA 
		What do you mean?
 
				AUNT HELEN 
		Oh, you know what they say: heed the 
		spark or you may dread the fire.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Snorts) 
		For heaven's sake!
 
 				AUNT HELEN 
		Sybylla, he is a man of the world. He has 
		quite a reputation with the ladies in 
		Melbourne. 

				SYBYLLA 
		I'll bet he has!
 
				AUNT HELEN 
		It has always been taken for granted that 
		he would eventually marry into one of the 
		best families. Aunt Gussie will make sure 
		of that.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		Aunt Helen, I know! I know Harry can
		marry anyone. I know he wouldn't want to 
		marry me -- if I wanted to get married, 
		which I don't. He'd never ask me in a 
		million years!
 
				AUNT HELEN 
			(A little taken aback 
			by the outburst) 
		So long as you know...
			(Changing subject) 
		In the box, there's a surprise for you. A 
		lovely new dress for the ball. 

	Getting no response, AUNT HELEN, thankfully, goes out. 
	SYBYLLA, after a moment, rises and moves towards the bed 
	and opens the box.

	She takes a beautiful dress from the box -- and throws it 
	down savagely.
 
74. 	EXT. WOOLSHED. FIVE BOB DOWNS. EVENING 
	Outside the big Five Bob woolshed a bonfire has been lit. 
	CHILDREN chase each other around it, MEN and WOMEN from 
	neighbouring properties exchanging greetings in its light, 
	and move on to the woolshed ... whence already comes the 
	sound of a bush band.

	Beyond, the homestead is ablaze with lights.
 
75. 	INT. FIVE BOB DRAWING ROOM. NIGHT 
	In the large, brightly lit room, the gentry in evening dress 
	stand around in low-key conversation -- in contrast to the 
	noise and vitality at the woolshed -- sipping pre-dinner 
	drinks. 

	AUNT GUSSIE chats with SYBYLLA and GRANDMA. HARRY is nearby 
	talking to MRS DERRICK, a Melbourne matron, and her tall, 
	statuesque daughter, BLANCHE, who is obviously a special 
	friend of HARRY's. FRANK is engrossed with a MISS BENSON, 
	a local horsey type.

	The BUTLER approaches AUNT GUSSIE. 

				BUTLER
		Excuse me, ma'am. Dinner is served.
 
				AUNT GUSSIE 
		Thank you. 

	She raises her voice to make herself heard.

				AUNT GUSSIE 
		Will you come into dinner, everyone? 

	UNCLE J.J. proffers AUNT GUSSIE his arm.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		Gussie. Allow me.
 
	HARRY moves forward to SYBYLLA, but is stopped by MISS 
	DERRICK who clutches his arm and sweeps him away, leaving 
	SYBYLLA standing alone. An elderly gentleman GUEST takes 
	her arm and escorts her in to dinner.
 
76. 	INT. FIVE BOB DINING ROOM. NIGHT 
	HARRY sits at the top of a large table. On his right is 
	MISS DERRICK who is monopolising the conversation.

	Farther down the table the elderly gentleman GUEST is 
	talking to SYBYLLA but her eyes are on HARRY and MISS 
	DERRICK.
   
	Snatches of conversation regarding wool prices, the weather, 
	etc. emerge, while the guests are being served.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		I see that Furlow has bought himself a 
		very fine bull.

	Opposite, SYBYLLA looks up.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Loudly: unable to help herself) 
		That should make a few cows happy!

	There is a brief pause. The elderly gentleman GUEST beside 
	her tries to stifle a laugh. MISS DERRICK looks down her nose.  
	GRANDMOTHER, opposite, exchanges an agonised glance with AUNT 
	HELEN. AUNT GUSSIE can't suppress a small, carefully 
	restrained smile. 

	HARRY looks at SYBYLLA. SHE meets his eye blandly.
 
77. 	INT. FIVE BOB BALLROOM. NIGHT 
	On a small dais, an elderly LADY is playing the violin while 
	SYBYLLA plays a simple accompaniment on the piano. She is 
	rather sour faced and glances up as HARRY and MISS DERRICK 
	pass.
   
	Most of the GUESTS are dancing, others chatting. FRANK is 
	deep in discussion with MISS BENSON.
 
				FRANK 
		And on my mother's side, we are a 
		connection of the Rutherfords ... that is 
		the ducal family of Rutherfords, of 
		course.

	MISS BENSON is very impressed.

	The music and the dance come to an end. There is some 
	applause. SYBYLLA rises and leaves the dais. Someone else 
	takes over the piano.
   
	As HARRY is about to go to her, she starts dancing with 
	another YOUNG MAN.
 
78. 	INT. FIVE BOB DRAWING ROOM. NIGHT 
	AUNT GUSSIE and GRANDMOTHER come in. AUNT HELEN is sitting 
	reading to some children. Some older girls are watching the 
	dancing from the door.

				AUNT GUSSIE 
		Go in, girls, and dance with the grown 
		ups. 

	SHE and GRANDMOTHER sit down for a chat ... as SYBYLLA comes 
	in and joins AUNT HELEN. AUNT GUSSIE smiles across at her.

				GRANDMOTHER 
			(A little anxiously)
		I'm afraid she's a bit of a handful! I do 
		hope she behaved herself while she was 
		with you.

				AUNT GUSSIE 
		Why not? Charming girl. 

	GRANDMOTHER is relieved -- if unbelieving. 

	HARRY comes in and goes to speak to SYBYLLA. She rises and 
	walks out. AUNT GUSSIE notices ... as HARRY turns away 
	angrily.
 
79. 	EXT. FIVE BOB YARD. NIGHT 
	The sound of the bush band playing traditional dance tunes 
	comes from the woolshed.

	Around the bonfire, children are playing and groups of 
	guests stand talking, laughing and drinking.

	SYBYLLA stalks past them, unnoticed, towards the woolshed.
 
80. 	INT. THE WOOLSHED. NIGHT 
	It is gay with streamers, flowering wattle branches, and
	young gum tips, and hanging lamps.

	A small BUSH BAND of fiddle, concertina, bush-bass, bones 
	and banjo are playing a vigorous tune -- such as "Eubalong 
	Ball" -- to which the Five Bob "hands" and staff and those 
	from neighbouring properties are dancing vigorously and 
	with open enjoyment.

	Among the visitors are BIDDY and ETHEL.

	At the other end of the shed are trestle tables on which a 
	lavish amount of food is being arranged by some of the women. 

	Nobody notices as SYBYLLA comes in. SHE sees JOE, a Five Bob 
	hand, and goes to him. He grins at her. 

				JOE
		How are you going, miss? Having a good time? 

				SYBYLLA 
		Will you dance with me? 

				JOE
		Righto.
 
	He hands his drink to someone, and they move onto the floor 
	and join in the dancing.

				SYBYLLA 
		They're too stuffy back there.

				JOE
		Forgotten how to enjoy themselves. 
			(He sings with the tune)
		"I look upon the nobles 
		with their lineages old ..." 
			(spoken)
		Know Henry Lawson?

	SYBYLLA grins and sings the next line as she dances.

				SYBYLLA 
		"I looked upon their mansions 
		and their acres and their gold ..." 

				JOE
			(Singing)
		"I saw their women radiant 
		in jewelled gowns appear ..."

 				JOE and SYBYLLA 
			(Singing together) 
		"And then I joined the army 
		of the outcasts in the rear ..." 

	Laughing together, they whirl around the floor ... as 
	uninhibited as the rest.
 
	Led by HARRY and AUNT GUSSIE, the GUESTS arrive to watch. 
	Some chairs have been arranged for them on the edge of the 
	floor.
 
	AUNT GUSSIE motions GRANDMOTHER to sit beside her. 

	Some, including UNCLE J.J. with MISS DERRICK, join in the 
	dancing.

	HARRY sourly watches SYBYLLA dancing with JOE. 

	GRANDMOTHER also sees, with dismay, and draws AUNT HELEN's 
	attention. AUNT GUSSIE follows their gaze -- and looks amused.
   
	HARRY, with mounting anger, pushes through the dancers and tries 
	to cut in, tapping JOE on the shoulder. JOE doesn't seem to 
	notice -- and they wheel away. HARRY follows as SYBYLLA swings 
	out from JOE, he seizes her and pulls her aside roughly ...
	leading her through the dancers towards the door.

	AUNT GUSSIE notices with some concern.
 
81. 	EXT. FIVE BOB YARD/HOUSE. NIGHT 
	Beyond the bonfire, SYBYLLA is struggling with HARRY. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Let me go!
 
	HARRY ignores her, dragging her after him towards the house. 
	HE opens a side door and pushes SYBYLLA in to what is 
	evidently his office.
 
82. 	INT. HARRY'S OFFICE. NIGHT 
	HARRY pushes SYBYLLA in and turns to close the door. It is a 
	working manager's room with  HARRY'S paraphernalia around. 
	His riding crop is on the desk on top of accounts and papers.

	HE lets go of SYBYLLA who is furious.

				SYBYLLA 
		Didn't you like me dancing with the 
		peasants? I'm one of them, you know.

				HARRY 
			(Quietly furious) 
		I'm not going to make a long yarn of this ...

				SYBYLLA 
		Shocked you, did I?
 
				HARRY 
		In a few days I have to go away ... 

				SYBYLLA 
		Oh, more shearing somewhere else?
 
	SHE picks up the riding crop, unconsciously, and plays with it.

				HARRY
		... and I must be told is it yes or no? 

				SYBYLLA 
		What's the question?
 
				HARRY 
		I thought ... I thought we might get 
		married. 

	SYBYLLA is taken by surprise and hesitates a moment. Then she
	flares back at him.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Mocking him) 
		Well, what a handsome proposal! How could 
		anyone say no?

	At the end of his tether, HARRY grabs her.

				HARRY 
			(Grating it out!) 
		How dare you!
 
	HARRY suddenly pulls her to him as though he is going to kiss 
	her roughly.
  
	SYBYLLA raises the riding crop and slashes HARRY across the face.

	HARRY, stunned, steps back putting his hand to his cheek.

	SYBYLLA stands, appalled at herself.
  
	A beat -- and HARRY wrenches the crop from her and throws it 
	aside. HE puts a handkerchief to his cheek. 

	SYBYLLA doesn't know what to say.

				SYBYLLA 
		Harry, I'm ... I'm ... I didn't ... 

				HARRY 
			(Quietly) 
		My fault ... It was stupid of me ... I 
		really should get back to my guests. 

	He turns and goes out.
   
	SYBYLLA looks after him, shattered by what she has done. 
	Tears run down her face.
 
83. 	EXT. THE FIVE BOB GARDEN/VERANDA. NIGHT 
	AUNT GUSSIE hurries through the darkness towards the house. 

	SYBYLLA is sitting on the edge of the veranda, her face 
	streaked with tears. She looks up as AUNT GUSSIE comes to 
	her and puts her arms around her.

				AUNT GUSSIE 
		The boy's an idiot ... But you did lead 
		him on.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		I didn't mean to. Why didn't he lose his 
		temper anything ...
 
				AUNT GUSSIE 
		He wants to marry you.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		He couldn't! I'm a misfit, a larrikin ... 
		my nose is even the wrong shape ... 

				AUNT GUSSIE 
		True. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Then why me?
 
				AUNT GUSSIE 
		Because he loves you, and I think you 
		love him ...and you make all the other 
		misses who've been through here look like 
		so many pale, insipid nobodies, which 
		they undoubtedly are.

				SYBYLLA 
		But why does it always have to come down 
		to marriage!
 
 				AUNT GUSSIE 
		Don't be foolish, child. It's natural -- 
		to want someone as part of you, part of 
		your life.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		I don't want to be part of anyone. I want 
		to be myself!
 
				GUSSIE
		Do you imagine you're the only female on 
		earth to have such notions? ... 
		Loneliness is a terrible price to pay for 
		independence... Sybylla, don't throw away 
		reality for some impossible dream. 

				SYBYLLA 
		It's not impossible! It's not.
 
84. 	INT. FIVE BOB DOWNS BEDROOM. DAWN 
	SYBYLLA sitting by the window, looking out at the dawn. 

	From below come the sounds of the last visitors leaving.
 
85. 	EXT. FIVE BOB YARD. DAWN 
	HARRY in his shirtsleeves is leaning on the rail, smoking, 
	looking out over the paddocks. 

	SYBYLLA comes up to him. 

				SYBYLLA 
			(Quietly) 
		Hello, Podgy. 

				HARRY 
		Hello, silly Syb.
     
	There is a silence between them.

				HARRY 
		I've got to leave all this, Syb. We're 
		closing the house. I'm going north to see 
		to the other properties. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Why? What's happened?
 
				HARRY 
		The bank wants its money, and I haven't 
		got it. 

				SYBYLLA 
		They couldn't take everything? 

				HARRY 
		They could.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		How long have you known? 

				HARRY 
		Quite a while.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		Why didn't you tell me?
 
				HARRY 
		I'm sorry, I should've ... I was afraid 
		of losing you as well.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		Oh Harry, I'm sorry.
 
86. 	EXT. BY THE RIVER. DAWN 
	SYBYLLA and HARRY are walking along the banks of the river. 

				HARRY 
		Now you know. There's no need to feel 
		tied... I mean I shouldn't have asked you 
		... I had no right. I'll be a poor man. 
		But we'll be friends -- mates, won't we? 

	SYBYLLA takes his arm.

				SYBYLLA 
		Of course ... Do you think I cared for 
		you just because you were rich? ... Harry, 
		there's something I must say ...

	They stop and turn to each other.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Earnestly) 
		I wish I could help you ... Could you... 
		can you give me a bit of time -- maybe 
		two years? You see, I'm just not ready 
		yet. Last night -- I don't know -- I 
		think I was trying to hurt you ... make 
		you let go, do something ... Harry, give 
		me a chance to find out what's wrong with 
		the world -- and with me ... who I am... 
		everything. Then I'll marry you -- if you 
		need me ... and I can help. You do 
		understand, don't you? 

				HARRY 
		Of course I do.

	SHE puts her arms around him.

				SYBYLLA 
		I knew you would.

	THEY hold each other ... and kiss, gently, then more 
	lastingly.
 
87. 	EXT. CADDAGAT GARDEN. DAY 
	SYBYLLA is sitting in a tree, writing in her exercise book, 
	brooding.
   
	BIDDY comes down the path looking for her. SHE stops beneath 
	the tree.

				BIDDY
		I don't know what you've been up to now, 
		but Mrs Bossier wants to see you.

				SYBYLLA 
		Oh, Biddy! Can't they wait?
 
				BIDDY 
		She says now. They're all waiting. Mr 
		Julius and Mrs Bell. You better hurry.

	BIDDY goes as SYBYLLA climbs out of the tree, annoyed by the 
	interruption.
 
88. 	INT. CADDAGAT DRAWING ROOM. DAY 
	GRANDMOTHER is sitting with AUNT HELEN while UNCLE J.J. paces 
	impatiently, as SYBYLLA comes in. GRANDMOTHER holds a letter.
 
				GRANDMOTHER 
			(Gently) 
		Come in, dear, and sit down. 

	SYBYLLA, surprised, sits down nearby.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		I'll come straight to the point, Sybylla. 
		It seems your father has got himself into 
		difficulties again. Money, of course. 

				UNCLE J.J. 
		He borrowed 500 pounds from a chap called 
		McSwat ... and put the farm up as security 
		at four per cent interest. That's twenty 
		pounds a year. Very fair. 

				SYBYLLA 
		What's this got to do with me?
 
				GRANDMOTHER 
		Well, your mother says she's tried, but 
		there is no way they can pay it.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		And this McSwat chap's made a very 
		generous offer ... He'd be worth a few 
		bob I'd say. 

				GRANDMOTHER 
			(Repressing him) 
		Julius! So it's been arranged that instead 
		of the interest ... he will accept your 
		services as governess to his children.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Astounded) 
		Arranged...for me? ... Don't I have a say? 
		... I won't go! I won't! 

	SYBYLLA storms out.

	There is an awkward silence. UNCLE J.J. clears his throat.

				UNCLE J.J. 
		Well...Life round here will certainly be 
		uneventful when she's gone.
 
				GRANDMOTHER 
		Do her the world of good ...make her 
		think of other people, instead of 
		herself.
 
89. 	INT. THE MCSWAT SCHOOLROOM. DAY 
	The "schoolroom" is a shed in the McSwat's backyard. It has	an 
	earthen floor and slab walls through which the wind and dust 
	blow freely. It is also used as a store room, with bins of grain 
	and pollard, and bits of farm machinery stacked against the 
	walls. It is also a comfortable home for dozens of rats. The 
	children's "desk" is a long trestle table behind which is a 
	battered collection of old chairs or boxes. The "teacher's desk" 
	is a small table made from kerosene boxes, with a ricketty chair 
	behind it. The blackboard is a piece of painted plywood with 
	bits peeling off.
   
	The CHILDREN -- LIZER (about thirteen), JIMMY (about eleven) and 
	in descending ages; SARAH, WILLY, TOMMY and MARY ANNE are seated 
	at their table in various attitudes of boredom. They are ragged, 
	dishevelled and dirty. They watch as SYBYLLA writes her name "Miss 
	Melvyn" on the blackboard.

				SYBYLLA 
		This is my name. Miss Melvyn. 

				JIMMY 
		Old boozy Melvyn's daughter!
    
	The CHILDREN laugh. SYBYLLA tries to rise above it.

				SYBYLLA
		I'll have no more impertinence, thank 
		you! Now sit up straight and attend! 
		Er -- James -- fetch the text books, 
		please. 

				JIMMY 
		Ain't got none.
 
				LIZER
		Rats got 'em. Pa says you can teach out 
		of your head. 

				JIMMY 
		Miss Killen couldn't. She was as mad as 
		a tree fulla galahs.

				SARAH
		And the one before her only stayed a week 
		... and ran off into the bush and we never 
		seen her again. And the one before her ...

	Suddenly TOMMY jumps up and points beyond SYBYLLA.

				TOMMY
			(Yelling) 
		Rat! A whopper!
 
	The CHILDREN, yelling, jump up to chase it. JIMMY jumps over 
	the table, knocking it over, pushes SYBYLLA aside and runs 
	out the door. SHE shouts in vain.

				SYBYLLA 
		Sit down! Sit down! This instant!
 
	THEY ignore her and follow JIMMY. SYBYLLA goes to the door.

				SYBYLLA 
		Come back!
 
90. 	EXT. MCSWAT'S HOMESTEAD. DAY 
	The children chase the rat out of sight across the yard, yelling, 
	with chickens and pigs noisily getting out of their way. SYBYLLA 
	stands outside the shed feeling desperate -- and helpless.

	The landscape is treeless, rocky and dry. The "homestead" is 
	comprised of a collection of ramshackle rough weatherboard or 
	slab buildings -- the "house" having originally been a slab hut 
	to which have been added shaky extensions.
   
	The yards with their broken fences, are scattered with bits and 
	pieces of old carts, implements and farm machinery, rusty cans, 
	broken cases ... and an assortment of scraggy animals and poultry. 
	Fowls, pigs, goats, geese, sheep and dogs wander about at will. 
	Drying rabbit skins festoon the fences along with drying and 
	stinking sheep skins.
   
	MRS MCSWAT comes from the fly-ridden extension to the kitchen 
	where she has been chopping some meat, to see what is going on. 
	She is a large, untidy, dirty woman in men's boots, ragged 
	skirt and bag apron. She hoists a squalling, filthy baby onto 
	her hip as she looks out -- and decides to do nothing about it.
 
91. 	INT. MCSWAT KITCHEN. DAY 
	The kitchen is a large dingy all-purpose room -- once the entire 
	"house" -- also built of slabs. It has no range but an open 
	fireplace where everything is cooked -- with a spit, a camp oven, 
	etc. In the middle of the room is a large table, surrounded by 
	various seats -- old chairs, boxes etc. Above from the rafters, 
	hang a couple of kerosene lamps. There is no ceiling. 

	At the fire, MRS MCSWAT is holding a baby while she stirs the 
	stew -- a greyish, glutinous mess in a large black pot. Around 
	her the CHILDREN are fighting and yelling, while various animals 
	and fowls get underfoot or have to be chased off the chairs, as 
	they fight for their places at the table ... and grab whatever 
	is available in forks and knives etc. and tear pieces off a large 
	loaf of bread.
   
	SYBYLLA sits at one end of the table trying to stop them, 
	ineffectually.
   
	MR MCSWAT and his eldest, PETER, come in from outside, to take 
	their places at the table. MR MCSWAT an untidy slob of a man, 
	has an unshaven, unwashed but good-natured face. PETER is 
	eighteen, lanky, gawky and obviously hungry. He joins in the 
	scuffling at the table.
   
	MRS MCSWAT calls LIZER to take the baby, while she carries the 
	pot of stew to the table ... and begins serving, sloshing great 
	spoonfuls of the mess onto the plates.
   
	Ravenously JIMMY attacks the stew, slurping it up on his knife. 
	Sitting next to him, SYBYLLA, trying to hold herself in, tries 
	to stop him.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		Jimmy, I've told you before ... use the 
		fork to put the food into your mouth. 

				JIMMY 
		Ain't got one.
 
				MR MCSWAT
		The Lord made fingers before he made forks! 

				SYBYLLA 
		Just don't use your knife! 

				JIMMY
		Why not? Pa does.
 
				MR MCSWAT
			(Heartily) 
		And I can say I'm a richer man today than 
		them that don't!

				MRS MCSWAT
		You're right there, Pa. 

				LIZER
		Yeah, you're right, Pa.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		Well, your Pa doesn't talk with his mouth 
		full! 

				LIZER
	 	Me Ma does!

				MRS MCSWAT
			(Laughs) 
		You're gonna have your work cut out with 
		this lot.
 
92. 	EXT. CADDAGAT VERANDA. DAY 
	AUNT HELEN and GRANDMOTHER are sitting having tea while they 
	read their mail.
 
				GRANDMOTHER 
		Hm, I see you've received another one of 
		these too. Really, how can she expect us 
		to believe all this nonsense.
 
	GERTIE and FRANK come from the garden, carrying Tennis racquets.

				FRANK 
		Of course you won. I didn't stand a 
		chance! 

				GERTIE 
		Oh yes you did. 

				FRANK 
		I did not. 

				GERTIE 
		You did! 

				FRANK 
		I did not!
    
	FRANK pulls the chair out for GERTIE who sits.

				GRANDMOTHER 
		Ah, Gertie, Frank, just in time for tea. 

				HELEN 
		Did you have a good game? Who won? 

				GERTIE 
		I did!
 
 				GRANDMOTHER 
			(Laughing) 
		I think Frank was being rather gallant.
 
	FRANK smiles smugly as he helps himself to cake.
 
93. 	INT. MCSWAT SCHOOLROOM. DAY 
	The CHILDREN are sitting, bored, while SYBYLLA is at the 
	blackboard.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		Today I want to show you another very 
		important letter, the letter "h". "H"  
		follows the letter we learnt yesterday, 
		"g" ... "H" as in h-ot ... 

	SYBYLLA writes on the blackboard. AUNT HELEN's voice starts 
	under ...

				AUNT HELEN 
			(Voice over) 
		Sybylla, we cannot interfere with your 
		mother's wishes. The time will soon pass 
		... You would hardly recognise your little 
		sister. She has blossomed into quite a 
		young lady ... Try and do well where you 
		are, dear. We cannot always get what we 
		would like in this world.

				SYBYLLA 
		... "h" as in ...
 
	JIMMY aims his slingshot at SYBYLLA's back as she writes on the 
	blackboard. A spit ball hits her. SHE stops and turns. The 
	CHILDREN laugh.
   
	Grimly SYBYLLA picks up a stick she has on the desk and goes to 
	JIMMY and grabs him by the collar. HE yells piercingly as 
	SYBYLLA bends him over and whacks his bottom.

	HE wails; the CHILDREN yell.

				MCSWAT CHILDREN
		Ma! Ma! 

	LIZER goes to the door and yells.

				LIZER 
		Ma! Ma! She's gunna murder him! She's 
		killing our Jimmy! Ma!

	SHOT of MRS MCSWAT lying on her bed, playing with the BABY. SHE 
	hears the yells and sits up, putting the baby down.
 
94. 	EXT. MCSWAT YARD. DAY 
	MRS MCSWAT hurries from the house, to the door of the schoolroom.
 
95. 	INT. MCSWAT SCHOOLROOM. DAY 
	In the schoolroom, SYBYLLA, ignoring the shouting CHILDREN, is 
	whacking into JIMMY who is screaming at the top of his lungs.
      MRS MCSWAT looks in.

				JIMMY
		Ma! Ma, get her off me!
 
	Stick in hand, SYBYLLA pauses to look at MRS MCSWAT defiantly. 
	The CHILDREN fall silent.

	MRS MCSWAT looks at SYBYLLA... then drops her eyes and turns away.

				JIMMY 
			(Desperately) 
		Ma! 

	MRS MCSWAT walks away. The CHILDREN become silent.

	SYBYLLA pulls JIMMY back to his seat -- and puts out her hand for 
	the slingshot. JIMMY, admitting defeat, gives it to her.
 
96. 	INT. MCSWAT KITCHEN. DAY 
	The MCSWATS are grouped around a dilapidated, very out of tune 
	piano singing "Beautiful Dreamer" while SYBYLLA plays and sings 
	along with them. The tune is almost indistinguishable and the 
	MCSWATS seem to be tone deaf, but MR and MRS MCSWAT sing 
	sentimentally and happily while the smaller CHILDREN listen and 
	watch open mouthed. The noise is awful.
 
97. 	INT. SYBYLLA'S MCSWAT ROOM. NIGHT 
	SYBYLLA's room is small, draughty and basic but it has the 
	distinction of being wall-papered ... with old Bulletins, 
	magazines and newspapers.

	Standing on a chair, while LIZER holds a lantern, SYBYLLA is 
	giving a dramatic reading from an old Bulletin page.  The 
	CHILDREN sitting on the floor listen entranced. THEY are now 
	washed, tidied and in clean clothes.

				SYBYLLA
			(Reciting)
		"Now Harry speaks to Rover, 
		The best dog on the plains, 
		And to his hardy horses 
		And strokes their shaggy manes ..." 
			(She pauses) 
		... page 25 ???
 
	The OLDER CHILDREN quickly look at the walls for Page 25.  
	LIZER finds it...somewhere on the wall above SYBYLLA's bed.

				LIZER 
		Up here!

	SYBYLLA climbs up on the bed with LIZER and as many as can join 
	them, and she starts to read again while LIZER holds the lantern.
 
 				SYBYLLA
		"We've breasted bigger rivers, 
		When floods were at their height, 
		Now shall this gutter stop us 
		From getting home tonight!"
 
	TIME LAPSE 

	LIZER, holding a lantern, is reading from high up on the wall. MRS 
	MCSWAT with the BABY has joined the CHILDREN. SHE is very affected 
	by the poetry. SYBYLLA nurses one of the CHILDREN.

				LIZER
			(Reading hesitantly) 
		"And I the one 
		that have loved him the best, 
		Have grown to be ... past carin'. 
		I've grown to be past carin' ... 
		Past waiting ... and past wearin' ..."
 
 	TIME LAPSE
 
	SYBYLLA is alone, sitting on her bed, trying to write a letter 
	to Harry by the light of the lamp.

	C.U. on page with her writing "Dear Harry ..." 

	Her mother's voice encroaches on her thoughts ...
 
 				MOTHER 
			(Voice over) 
		I suppose I should thank God for one
		agreeable daughter. If Gertie marries 
		Harry Beecham it will be a blessing.

	SHE pauses ... Her mother's voice continues ...
 
 				MOTHER 
		Your grandmother says he has come back. 
		He's managed to save Five Bob Downs ... 
		and seems to spend most of his time with 
		Gertie ...
 
	SYBYLLA screws up the letter ... and closes her eyes, trying to 
	stop tears of pain and hopelessness.
 
98. 	EXT. BEYOND MCSWAT'S BACK YARD. NIGHT 
	SYBYLLA is walking alone among a high outcrop of rocks where 
	McSwat's backyard ends. It is a crisp, clear night. SHE sits on 
	a rock to look at the stars. SHE looks up as she hears the sound 
	of a horse behind her.

	PETER on horseback comes around the rocks and starts as he sees 
	her. He pulls up his horse. 

				PETER
		Who's that? 

				SYBYLLA 
		It's me.
 
				PETER
		I thought you was a ghost. What're you 
		doing out here?
    
	HE gets off and joins her.

				SYBYLLA 
		Just thinking ... You've been over to 
		see Susie Duffy again?
 
	PETER grins. THEY start walking down to the yards together.

 				PETER
		Yeah.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		Third time this week.
 
99. 	EXT. MCSWAT'S BACKYARD. NIGHT 
	Beneath them, in the backyard, the McSwat dunny is visible in the 
	moonlight, and in it, with the door open, is MR MCSWAT peering at 
	a newspaper ... HE looks up as he hears their voices ... and sees 
	the forms of SYBYLLA and PETER talking together, coming down the 
	hill towards the house. HE keeps still and silent.
 
100. 	EXT. MCSWAT CLOTHESLINE IN YARD. DAY 
	SYBYLLA is pegging our clothes on the line. LIZER is nearby
 	helping, and the other CHILDREN are playing in the background. 
	MR and MRS MCSWAT approach her a little hesitantly. 

				MR MCSWAT
		We want to have a serious talk with you, 
		lovey ... 

	SYBYLLA stops and turns to her. MRS MCSWAT looks uncomfortable.

				MRS MCSWAT
		Now... well ... you see ... we want you 
		to know that we like you and you being a 
		good girl. 

				MR MCSWAT
		It'd be different if you had some 
		property ... 

	SYBYLLA looks at them, puzzled.
 
				MRS MCSWAT
		You see, our Peter ... he's almost as 
		sure as made it with Susie Duffy. 

				SYBYLLA 
		What are you talking about? 

				MR MCSWAT
		We've seen you going out at night. 

				MRS MCSWAT
		We can't say we blame you. He's a good 
		looking lad.
 
	SYBYLLA is beginning to understand and is openmouthed.

				MR MCSWAT
		But you don't have any property, see, 
		like I said. 

				SYBYLLA 
		You don't think that ... you can't ... 

	SYBYLLA is appalled and almost speechless. Suddenly all her 
	bottled up frustrations get the better of her ... and she 
	starts to giggle and laugh a little wildly.

				SYBYLLA 
		Oh no! Oh, no, no, no!
 
	MRS MCSWAT misinterprets the near hysteria and gently puts her hands 
	on SYBYLLA's shoulders.

				MRS MCSWAT
		There, there lovey ... 
			(SHE turns to her husband.) 
		I told you it'd be too much of a shock for her. 

	SHE puts her arms around SYBYLLA to comfort her.

				MRS MCSWAT
		Come on, now, lovey, no-one ever really 
		died of a broken heart.
 
				MR MCSWAT
			(Uncomfortably) 
		So you see, girlie, things being as they 
		are ... we've got to send you home. 

	SYBYLLA turns to look at MR MCSWAT ... who clears his throat and 
	takes a piece of paper from his pocket.

				MR MCSWAT
		I've wrote a bit of a letter for you. 

				MRS MCSWAT
		Just to tell your Ma.
 
				MR MCSWAT
		Saying you wasn't well, like, and they 
		don't have to worry about the money -- 
		not until things look up. 

				MRS MCSWAT
		Now don't you take it so hard. There's 
		plenty of other nice fellows in the world. 

	SYBYLLA hugs MRS MCSWAT.
   
	The CHILDREN who have come to see what was going on, all join in 
	a communal hug.

101.	EXT. POSSUM GULLY. DAY 
	Crows are wheeling in a hot midsummer sky. At Possum Gully, the 
	drought continues.
 
102. 	EXT. MILKING SHED. DAY 
	MOTHER wearily takes the milk pail from underneath a cow, hands 
	it to STANLEY, picks up a new BABY lying in a box nearby and 
	starts towards the house ... pausing to look out at the hopeless 
	blue sky, and the dry, bare paddocks.
 
103. 	EXT. HOME PADDOCK. POSSUM GULLY. DAY 
	The dam is almost dry. A calf is stuck in the mud -- while a cow 
	moos mournfully on the bank nearby.

	SYBYLLA, sunburnt, wearing old ragged clothes with an old hat 
	tied on with a scarf, is trying to pull it free by its back legs. 

				SYBYLLA 
		Come on, out you get! Come on!
 
	SHE pulls the calf free, almost collapsing in the mud herself.

	Unseen by her, HARRY, on horseback, comes to the edge of the dam. 
	Smiling, he watches her, and dismounts.

				HARRY 
		Do you need a hand? 

	SYBYLLA turns to see him.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Smiling, with Irish accent) 
		Peeping and prying again, are you?
 
	SYBYLLA helps the calf out of the mud, and, extricating herself, 
	plods towards him, with mud up to her knees and smearing her 
	face. She grins at him, feeling selfconscious.

 				HARRY 
		It's good to see you again, Syb. 

	THEY start walking back towards the house.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Trying to appear casual) 
		We had a letter from grandmother. She 
		said you might be coming down ... I must 
		look a sight ... 
			(She wipes the 
			mud off her face) 
		I'm glad you saved Five Bob.

				HARRY 
		I was lucky, that's all. Did you find the 
		answers to all those questions? I mean 
		what was wrong with the world and 
		everything ...
 
				SYBYLLA 
			(Grins) 
		Yes. Partly me. 

	HE smiles at her.
 
 				HARRY 
		Well, here I am ... Aunt Gussie sends her 
		love. She's very keen on me getting 
		married...

				SYBYLLA 
		I think it's a good idea too. 

	HE stops.

				HARRY 
		Oh, Syb, do you?
 
				SYBYLLA 
 		Gertie is just right for you. She's 
		everything I'm not ... I've got to change 
		... Father's down the paddock. 

	SHE breaks into a run, leaving him. HE calls after her.
 
				HARRY 
		Syb, it's not Gertie! It's you. It's you 
		I want to marry!
 
	SHE stops and slowly turns to him. There is anguish in her face.

	CUT TO
 
104. 	EXT. A SCRUBBY PART OF THE PADDOCK. DAY
 
	A hot, blustery wind has come up. The horse is tied to a bush 
	nearby.
   
	HARRY is facing SYBYLLA bewildered and choked with emotion.
 
				HARRY 
		You promised -- if I needed you ... I do, 
		Syb. I love you, I want to marry you. 
		Trust me, Syb.

				SYBYLLA
		It's me I don't trust! Can't you see? ... 
		The last thing I want is to be a wife out 
		in the bush, having a baby every year.

				HARRY 
		You can do anything you want! We can go to 
		the city as much as you like ...

	SHE puts her arms around him.
 
				SYBYLLA  
		Dear, dear Harry. Maybe I'm ambitious, 
		selfish, but I can't lose myself in 
		somebody else's life, when I haven't yet 
		lived my own  I want to be a writer. At 
		least, I'm going to try. But I've got to 
		do it now ... and I've got to do it alone. 
		Please try to understand. 

				HARRY 
			(Brokenly) 
		I thought you loved me.
 
				SYBYLLA 
		Harry ...
 
				HARRY
		Don't you love me, even a little?

				SYBYLLA 
		I'm so near loving you ... but I'd 
		destroy you ... and I can't do that.

	SYBYLLA kisses him gently. For a moment he clings to her.
 
105. 	INT. SYBYLLA'S ROOM, POSSUM GULLY. NIGHT 
	AURORA, the little sister, is asleep in what had been Gertie's 
	bed. SYBYLLA is sitting at a small table by the side of her bed, 
	writing in an exercise book by the light of a candle. On the table 
	beside the inkwell are several more exercise books, in a pile. 
	SHE stops to consider what she has written. Then under, she 
	continues her writing.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Voice over) 
		So now I've written it all down... Why? 
		To try and make sense of it. It may come 
		out sounding like a couple of nails in a 
		rusty tin pot. My ineffectual life may be 
		trod in the same round of toil ... but I 
		want to tell everyone about my own people, 
		how I love them and pity them ... pity 
		all of us ...

	SHE looks towards the window where the first rays of the sun are 
	visible. Her VOICE continues under.

				SYBYLLA 
			(Voice over) 
		The sun is shining on another day and 
		hope is whispering in my ear ... 
			(she writes) 
		With love and good wishes to all ...
		goodnight ...goodbye... Amen.

	SYBYLLA looks at the page for a moment, then puts down her pen and 
	leans back ... as the sun through the window becomes brighter.
 
106. 	EXT. MELVYN HOUSE. EARLY MORNING 
	The magpies are beginning their dawn chorus.

	SYBYLLA comes from the house carrying a large brown paper parcel 
	tied with string. SHE starts down towards the gate.
 
107. 	EXT. MELVYN GATE. EARLY MORNING 
	SYBYLLA comes to the gate, carrying her parcel. SHE looks at it.

	C.U. on address written in capitals on the parcel. 

			BLACKWOOD PUBLISHERS
			EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND, GREAT BRITAIN

	SHE kisses it for luck, and puts it in the old drum which acts as 
	a mailbox.
    
	SHE leans on the gate, looking into the sunrise.
 
 	HOLD ... then SUPER:
 
   			"'My Brilliant Career' was published 
			in Edinburgh, Scotland, in 1901."
 











Screenplay by Eleanor Witcombe
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