The two main characters in the short story "Ruthless" by William de Mille are the husband, Judson Webb, and his wife, Mabel Webb. What differences do you notice between these two characters?

In "Ruthless," Judson and Mabel are very different characters. For example, Judson is vengeful, while Mabel is forgiving and understanding. This is seen when Judson wants to poison the whiskey, while Mabel does not.

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One main difference between the two characters is that Judson is vengeful, and Mabel proves to be the complete opposite. In the story, Judson "seemed fascinated as he saw the Bourbon changing into a deadly drink." Judson feels no remorse or guilt for poisoning the drink and is instead "fascinated" by what he is doing. He believes that the person who drinks the whiskey deserves this cruel fate because they are a thief. This shows his vindictive personality.

On the other hand, Mabel is completely mortified by what her husband is doing, which shows that she is more compassionate and understanding than he is. When she realizes what Judson is doing, she says, "Don't do it, Judson." This helps show the reader how horrified she is by his actions. She wants to show the thief who broke in last winter compassion instead of cruelty.

Additionally, Mabel has a strong moral compass, while Judson does not. When Mabel cannot convince Judson to not poison the drink, "she [makes] up her mind to tell Alec's wife." Even though this is going against her husband, she knows that the right thing to do is to tell someone. She is not willing to let someone die over this.

Unfortunately, when Mabel tries to convince Judson to do the right thing, he will not budge. In response to Mabel, he states, "the use of rat poison is not forbidden." Although using rat poison is not forbidden, using it to murder someone is. This shows that Judson clearly has weak moral values, unlike his wife.

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