Kate Sutton—An older teenager, Kate is intelligent, stubborn, and direct. She views herself as a realist and has little use for ballads or the Arthurian romances. Outwardly, she appears cold and confident: inwardly, she feels ugly and uncertain of herself. Kate has frequently been compared (negatively) withher younger sister. Her time in the Elvenwood, her first experience without Alicia at her side, helps give her confidence that her gifts, while different from Alicia's, are no less important.
Christopher Heron—Christopher, a young man in his early twenties, has a caring nature that he sometimes masks with sarcasm and outward hostility. He does not want Kate or his brother to recognize how distraught he is at Cecily's disappearance. Kate's relationship with him is initially stormy, but their mutual imprisonment by the Fairy Folk helps Christopher to become more open with Kate.
Sir Geoffry Heron—Upright and unimaginative, Sir Geoffrey had no idea that his wife's family had ties to a secret cult beneath Elvenwood Hall. He, with Christopher, initially believes that his daughter is dead. Busy with his service to Queen Mary, he also does not realize just how deeply Christopher is grieving Cecily, or that Christopher might put himself in danger to save her.
Master John—The steward of Elvenwood Hall, Master John is both greedy and unscrupulous. He does not believe in the religion of the Fairy Folk, but he aids them because of the money they offer him.
Old Dorothy—Like many longtime castle servants, Old Dorothy is aware of Sir John's dealings with the Fairy Folk. She probably suspects Cecily's real fate, but she is too frightened of the Fairy Folk to tell Sir Geoffrey.
The Fairy Queen—Also known as the Lady in Green, she is honest, scrupulous, and cold. She is never intentionally cruel, but she will take extreme measures when she believes the overall good of her people is at stake.
Alicia Sutton—Pretty but featherbrained, Alicia is several years younger than Kate. She has good intentions but frequently does not realize that actions she views as innocent can have serious consequences.
Princess Elizabeth—Later Queen Elizabeth I, the princess is strong-willed but realistic. She understands that fighting with her older half-sister Queen Mary will not help her situation, but she intends to right Mary's wrongs as soon as she becomes queen, including the wrong done to Kate.
Cecily Heron—Four years old, Cecily is little affected by her long months with the Fairy Folk, during which she lived as one of them. Fortunately for Cecily, they considered children unable to go through the teind training that Christopher underwent.
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