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De Nou, the executioner on the penal island of Nouméa, lusts after Zelie, a beautiful young girl who is in love with Bibi-Ri, a young pickpocket recently released from prison. When Bibi-Ri learns the identity of his new rival, he is overcome by cowardice, suggesting that Zelie enter a convent in order to save both their lives. She refuses. Bibi-Ri kills one of De Nou's aides, Bombiste, in a fight and is sentenced to be beheaded. Faced with certain death, the boy becomes brave and arranges for Zelie's safe passage to the mainland. As De Nou is about to execute Bibi-Ri, he discovers by a red birthmark on the boy's neck that Bibi-Ri is his long-lost son. De Nou collapses, and Bibi-Ri is set free to find happiness at last with Zelie.