Inspector Rogas, an investigator, the protagonist. His intelligence and his culture set him apart from the other members of the police force. He is thorough and persistent in his investigation, examining each event or piece of evidence with patience. His search for the assassin, assigned to him by his superiors, extends beyond the execution of his duties; it becomes for him an intellectual and personal challenge as he realizes the cleverness of his opponent. The investigation carries him dangerously close to truths that are best left undiscovered, and he meets with strong opposition to his exposing them.
Cres, the supposed assassin. Although he plays a central role, he is glimpsed only once. He is elusive, mysterious, and virtually untraceable; in short, he is very present yet invisible. Most important, he is clever and calculating, able to predict what the police’s next move will be and to evade it. Like Rogas, he is exact and thorough in his work; if he is indeed the assassin, he leaves no trace.
Nocio, a writer. Dramatic and sarcastic, he speaks openly and readily about his troubles. He is embittered and resentful at the low regard in which his books are held by the fashionable revolutionaries. After having thought of himself as a revolutionary in his country, he believes that he is now being displaced by a young class of pseudointellectuals, who spew...
(The entire section is 541 words.)