John Davys Beresford (1873 – 1947) was an English writer, now remembered for his early science fiction and short stories in the horror story and ghost story genres.
"Reparation" is a strange short story. Angus, a young engineer returning to England from Cape Town, is offered a first class passage by an ailing acquaintance on the pretext that he needs a secretary during the voyage. Once they set sail it becomes clear that there is in fact no secretarial work to be done and he is puzzled as to why he has been taken on.
One evening he is called to his employer's cabin. He old man is dying. On his deathbed, he entrusts Angus with a bag of uncut diamonds and instructions to give them to a young woman, Sarah Browning, who had once been his mistress, and with who he suspects he may have had a child. The old man dies. Angus does his best to find Sarah Browning, but finds that she has already left the address he had been given. But every time he attempts to abandon the quest, strange - and sometimes sinister - events occur which set him back on the track of the elusive woman.