Mollie Ralston, a tall, pretty woman in her late twenties. Having inherited Monkswell Manor from her aunt, she has decided to turn it into a guest house rather than sell it. Some years earlier, she had taught at the school that the Corrigan children attended. Jimmy Corrigan sent her a letter revealing that his foster parents, the Stannings of Longridge Farm, were abusing him, and he pleaded with her to help. Because she fell ill with pneumonia on the very day that the letter arrived, she did not see it until weeks later, by which time Jimmy was dead. A potential murder victim because of her connection with Jimmy’s death, she is also a suspect in the killing of the other two women who were involved in the tragedy. She secretly went to London on the day Mrs. Stanning was killed and is the first to find the body of Mrs. Boyle.
Giles Ralston, Mollie’s husband of exactly one year. He is handsome and about Mollie’s age. The two married only three weeks after meeting, so his past remains a mystery. He, too, made a clandestine trip to London on the day of Mrs. Stanning’s death, and he wears a coat, scarf, and hat like those seen on the killer.
Mrs. Boyle, a large, middle-aged, querulous woman. A former magistrate, she unwittingly sent the Corrigan children to Longridge Farm. She is strangled at the end of the first act.
Leslie Margaret Katherine Casewell
(The entire section is 616 words.)