Pride moves most of Miss Holt's aquiline-nosed gothics. The Peacock is Joss, opal-mining executive who runs his Australian mines but not his wife-in-name-only, Opal Jessica Clavering. Back in England she had known old Ben, an ""opal-gouger"" who struck it rich enough to buy her family's ancestral manse and Ben forced the marriage of Jessica to his illegitimate son Joss. After Ben's death the two trade insults all the way to Australia and love emerges only after the theft of Ben's mighty gem, the ""Green Flash,"" and other misfortunes. There's a lot about opals and this is fine for all the ladies whether they're born in October or not.