The Darling


  • Olenka: the daughter of a retired collegiate assessor. Very beautiful, but is also emotional, gentle, soft-hearted, compassionate, mild and tender eyes. Easily sways with the opinions around her and follows those that are closest to her. Is referred to as "darling" for her sweet personality and willingness to give.
  • Plemyanniakov: Olenka's Father – A retired collegiate assessor – has fallen ill and dies in the beginning of the story. Olenka's first male figure.
  • Kukin: neighbor of Olenka – manages the open air theater. Becomes Olenka's first husband and dies when he works in Moscow. Described as a small thin man, yellow face, with curls, talks in a thin tenor voice with an expression of despair, but had a deep genuine affection in Olenka
  • Vassily Andreitch Pustovalov: Olenka's neighbor is a merchant from a timber yard. He comforts her after the death of Kukin and falls in love with Olenka. Falls ill from a cold and later dies a few months later. Olenka's third male figure.
  • Smirnin: a veterinary surgeon – has separated from his wife who has his son, left her because of unfaithfulness. Easily embarrassed by Olenka. Olenka's fourth male figure
  • Sasha: Smirnin's son from his previous marriage attends school and is very intelligent. Parents abandoned him for work and social lives so was raised by Olenka. This is the last male figure that Olenka cares for, but smothers him with maternal love as compared to her previous husbands/male figures.

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