What are the main characters in "There Will Come Soft Rains" by Ray Bradbury?
As the previous educator has mentioned, the main character in "There Will Come Soft Rains" is the house. Located in Allendale, this house was inhabited (until recently) by a family, but a nuclear blast has wiped out the human population. Being a machine, the house does not realise that it is now alone and continues to function as though the residents are still there. It cooks and cleans, for instance, and announces birthday and anniversary reminders. When a fire breaks out, however, much of the house is destroyed. In fact, as the story ends, only one wall of the house remains.
Arguably, another main character is the family's pet dog which has miraculously survived the blast but is clearly suffering from radiation sickness. This is shown through its physical description:
"The dog, once large and fleshy, but now gone to bone and covered with sores."
After realising that its human owners have gone, the dog succumbs to its sickness and dies. Its body lies in the parlor for an hour before the house realises that it has died and sends its mice to clean the mess.
The story "There Will Come Soft Rains" from Ray Bradbury’s The Martian Chronicles has no human characters. The concept behind the story is that all human life on Earth is gone, but this fully automated house keeps going because it is a machine. We know people existed at one point because their outlines are visible outside.
The house is really the main character in the story, and is supposed to be a machine, but Bradbury gives the house human-like qualities (personification). The robotic mice in the story are described as angry and at the end of the story when the house catches on fire, the house is described as “dying” and screaming. The story says the house “tried to save itself” showing a human desire for self-preservation.
The other short stories in the collection have human characters, but the house would be the main character in “There Will Come Soft Rains”.