Herman Hunter aged 58. A knowledgeable but incredibly boring, loud but basically shy, caring man from Yorkshire. A latent thespian with a wonderful baritone singing voice, he used to belong to the local operatic society. Divorced for many years, with one son who he rarely sees. Shoulder length black curly hair, now heavily streaked with grey. Might have once been good looking, but age has taken its toll. Trained to be a (not very good) car mechanic in his family business, but since the family business was liquidated, has had a succession of temporary jobs from which he has been laid off, or sacked after a few months. Currently a relief taxi driver, due to being down on his luck and lacking a “proper” job. Loves the colour red, and has recently refurbished his bedroom in very feminine décor. Of course, the walls have been painted red, to match his toenails!
Frances Fortescue-Fairfax aged 55. Divorced several times. No current romantic liaisons, although she has recently been spending a lot of time in the company of an old school friend. Silver grey, shoulder length hair, immaculately manicured long nails which she swears are her own, and with a wardrobe to die for. Feisty, fashionable, flirtatious, full of fun and very fond of frequently using the “F” word which, spoken in her polished, well educated accent, seems to just cause mild amusement. A long term secretary to a local well to do businessman, who has recently died, leaving his very profitable business in the hands of his secretary.
Setting the scene. Three days after the funeral of her late employer, with a heavy business meeting to go to, Frances calls for a taxi.
Daniel Brown. Age 27years. Medium height, fair hair, brown eyes. A widow, his wife having died 2 years before. He is a sheep farmer in North Yorkshire. Lives with his 4 year old son. Has an elderly widow who comes in daily to help with the boy and do housework etc. Her 2 sons help on the farm. He has a sister, older than himself, who is married and lives in the South of England. She and her husband own a small hotel. They haven’t met since Daniel’s sife’s funeral. She wants him to visit with a view to leaving Robbie with her.
Robbie Brown. 4 years old. Shy and lonely. Rarely sees other children or leaves the farm. Has fair hair, and brown eyes. Wears glasses. Quite small for his age. Setting. The farm is isolated. Very few visitors call. Both father and son rely on the elderly widow. Winters are very hard. Thinking over his sister’s offer, but reluctant to part with the boy.
JOHN – handsome, 32 years old, tall and fit. He is newly arrived in New York as an immigrant from Norway. He has a job as a carpenter on NY’s piers. His church – Norwegian, is in choir where he meets Berthe, his future wife. He has already saved some money, goes to night school wants to improve his English. He marries Berthe and they have 6 kids.
Rose – 30 years old a Libra from Flatbush, Brooklyn. Seemingly well-adjusted she lives with her family (she is an only child) she has a passion for crime/thriller books and would like to be a crime writer herself. One day she meets John on her way to work.
Bernadette – Character
Michelle Age 27. Does not have a boyfriend and is not bothered.
Prison warden Likes Pop music Long hair Likes cars, motor bikes, has ridden in America. Likes action films. Car racing Car mechanic but men don’t like her so went for a job as a prison warden Puts up with a lot from the inmates as there is not enough staff Shortage of soap compels her to bring in some and give to her favourite girls. Girls work in the kitchens. Make her carrot or lemon curd cake. Girl misbehaves she throws them in solitary longer than recommended as she can’t cope with it all. Welcomes suicidal attempts that break the boredom Is in many ways like a man. Plays online scrabble. Hates foreign inmates. Has little respect for the drug addicts. Likes working on the baby wing where daily life is less harsh. Is not paid enough. Is in debt from gambling.
Phillip Mallory 40, handsome, tall distinguished single. Whose wife disappeared 10 years earlier. Occupation travel writer gives talks on cruise ships, also writes for travel magazines.
Piper Fielding sixteen, spent childhood in and out of foster homes. Named after Piper Laurie the actress. She has been with her present foster parents for three years. But it is now time to move on.
JUNE’S – Characters
Maggie has been running a teashop in Merton for the last ten years, with her partner, Julia. Maggie is a solidly built woman in her late forties. She is energetic, domineering and inclined to bully both Julia and her customers.
James is area manager for Lotsacoffee, a national chain which intends to open a branch in Merton. He is in his thirties, ambitious but not particularly intelligent. He was born in Merton, but now lives in the county town about 30 miles away.
Susie Jones – has light brown hair, hazel eyes, is slim, a petite 24 year old. Susie moves to Merton a seaside town after the death of her mother. Intent on making a fresh start she finds employment as receptionist at a local hotel. She lives in a small seafront cottage.
Max Spencer – fair-haired, with blue eyes, is tall with athletic build, is 43 years old. He lives in London, a university lecturer, married with 2 children. He rents a cottage at Merton, for his summer break to complete a book he is writing. He also wants to catch up with a long standing friend living in the town.
Setting – Merton is a small friendly community – enlarged during the summer months by day visitors and many artists that rent the picturesque cottages along the beach front. Merton has a busy Market Square, a variety of small shops and a weekly stall market on Wednesdays. There is a local hotel, a traditional old public house, a newly built Leisure Centre, a Library and a couple of restaurants. Merton has a long, quiet sandy beach and a Beach Café, a regular meeting place of Merton’s inhabitants.
Street Woman, 48, stick-thin, has black stringy hair, rotten-missing teeth, wears doc martin boots, is divorced, an Eastern European she walks with a limp, sells Big Issue, has one child aged 8 years.
Business man, 52, overweight, almost bald, film star teeth, wears Saville Row suits. Married, he is a ladies man, a Londoner he drives top of the range Bentley, has new £200k Rolls Royce on order.