1. Jubilee Faith Fairchild aka Faye Gardner. The POV character of this story which, though it can stand alone, is one chapter in the 'Faith' novel. A music teacher in her fifties. Has a habit of taking in strays. First it was cats--lots and lots of cats. Then it was people in crisis. Absent-minded and often anxious she wears on the nerves of her twin Julia. She is married to Inny.
2. Julia Love Fairchild. A physical therapist who once worked in a war zone and now is a high-school phys-ed teacher. She is strong-minded and often sarcastic with little patience for incompetence or hypocrisy. She glories in playing pranks. She bickers continuously with Wilma. (Julia has her own story in the 'Love' novel in the Fruits of the Spirit world.)
3. Wilma Grace Gardner. A high-school English teacher. She is a grammar cop in and out of the classroom. She a stickler for law and order. She seems hard as the steel color of her hair until witnessed in the presence of her twin Inny--especially after his 'bad trip'. (Wilma, too, has her own story in the 'Grace' novel)
4. Workman Innocence Gardner aka Inny. He was once a high-school shop teacher and an elder and teacher at a church until he was poisoned by an apple injected with an hallucinatory drug left on his desk by a student. He went on a bad trip that culminated in a years-long coma. Upon waking he spoke only in Biblical quotations. It was years more before Faye realized that the quotes were relevant to the moment and thus attempts to communicate. (Inny has his own story too. In the 'Innocence' novel.)
5. Mae Beatrice "Mae Bea" Morgan. A woman in her forties who has been making custom-designed rag dolls for decades. She also loves to play bingo and dreams of winning the lottery. She became the mother of Fancy at age fifteen.
6. Francine "Fancy" Morgan. A woman entering her thirties with a career as a country-western singer just taking off. She became the mother of Breezy at age fourteen but leaves most of the raising of her to Mae Bea. Her first hit, Making Rag Doll Babies and Million Dollar Maybes, based on their life, was co-written with her daughter.
7. Briana "Breezy" Morgan. Just fifteen and already the mother of Brandy. She is angry and rebellious, flaunting authority. The father of her baby is a mysterious figure on a motorcycle dressed in black leather with a visored helmet who never shows his face when in public with her. Her hair is multi-colored and multi-lengthed with tinsel and beads braided into it. Faye discovered her extraordinary singing voice when she was five and became her voice teacher as well as mentor.
8. Cassandra Cosgrove. Childhood friend of Fancy. They once won a teen singing contest as a duo named The Rag Dolls. Now she is a highway patrol person who often brings people in crisis to Faye's attention. She often has dreams that seam to forecast the future but are given little credence by anyone--even herself.
9. Estelle Star. The stage-name of a woman who wanders in and out of Faye's and Julia's lives. She once acted in Shakespeare plays but now appears to be homeless. She appears ancient and communicates only through Shakespearean quotes. (I know her real name but giving it here would be a spoiler until I've written her story)
10. Mama Cat. She is the mistress of the house Faye is living in as caretaker. She takes in stray cats and finds them good homes--hence the nickname. Faye is also entrusted with the care and adoption of the cats while Mama Cat is on a mysterious quest. She pops in now and then (but actually not in this story where she is just mentioned in passing) and leaves with a litter of just-weaned kittens. (Again, giving her real name here would be a spoiler before I've written her story.)
11. Lawson "Brick" Travis. A policeman and scoutmaster who trains his scouts in search and rescue. He and his boys are instrumental in the rescue of five-year-old Breezy when she is stuck up a tree on a limb over a river with a kitten she attempted to rescue. (Brick is a major figure in the 'Love.' novel.)
12. Jerrica Holmes. A college journalist major who was doing an interview with The Rag Dolls when Breezy went missing. She stayed with the teen mother until the child was found and rescued.
13. Troll. Very tall--over 6 1/2 feet-- and mostly silent, he is Jerrica's cameraman. He filmed the rescue of Breezy and kitten. (I once knew his real name but lost it when I lost my note file on the Fruits of the Spirit stories. I'll have to rename him when I tell the story of Jerrica and 'Troll' who become a couple and travel the world making independent documentary films.
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