A daydream unaltered by art, in which convalescent Hebrides islander Lesley, twelve, finds a former Oxford professor (C.B.E.) and his son Torquil living on the site of a washed out seaside village. Holing up to write a controversial book on prehistory, the Professor has become interested in tracking down relics of a Spanish woman lost from the Armada; once summoned to aid the search, and buoyed by a new skirt and haircut, Lesley sets him straight on how and where to look. (""There she stands,"" says he to himself, ""an island girl not yet thirteen, with more common-sense in her cut thumb than you with all your degrees."") Lesley finds the woman's crucifix, a diamond from her shoe; there is some gold ingot too. But where, another, contemporary Spanish lady (whom Lesley recognizes as a former, Cousteau-type TV diver) tries to kidnap Torquil for the loot, and the Professor's house is swept away again, he opts for civilization and turns in his finds. Rewards are promised--but this doesn't even glitter.