The Malayan-Woman is Guy's longstanding affair. He had 3 children with her, lived with her for about ten years, and concealed her from Doris. After she appeared more and more often, Doris realized the truth and left Guy because she couldn't come to grips with the situation. The Malayan-Woman moved into Guy´s house again and resumed the affair of them both.
The Malayan-Woman is depicted as an enigmatic figure with dark eyes, dark hair and a dark skin. She never speaks (maybe because Guy doesn´t allow her to speak) and seems very intimidated by Guy. Although Guy is just taking advantage of the Malayan-Woman, she still stays with him which shows us some kind of conscientiousness.
(Julian Hölzer)

Doris is the wife of Guy and is one of the three main characters. She married Guy in England and went with him to the British outpost in Malaysia, where the story takes place. She is described as a young, pretty woman with broun eyes and short hairs.
When Doris is together with her man, she is happy and well tempered. She live there with him a very well organised and recorded life. Although, they live in an outpost in Malaysia, they live more or less the british lifestyle.
In contrast to Guy, who was in Malaysia already before their marriage, Doris can not undestand the Malaysian way of life and so, she also can not accept it, when it becomes clear, that Guy had a affair with a native woman and has three children with her. She doesn`t want live with him as wife any longer. She can not kiss him, because she knows, that he kissed a native woman before! But although, she can not accept this, she is still friendly and polite to Guy and doesn` want make him unhappy.
(Diana)

Guy is the leading character; he is a little, fat man and 29 years of age. He was born in Sembulu,
and his father, who served under the second Sultan, was British. Guy, who has lived all his life in the tropics and came from a family tradition of colonial service, seems to be the perfect colonizer. He runs an isolated outpost in Malay. Before Guy married Doris, an English secretary, he had lived a lonely life. He used a native woman to fill is emptiness. For ten years he lived together with her and they have 3 children. After he met Doris on leave back home in Britain, he offered money to the Malay woman to move in another village, but she stayed at close range. Now that Doris lived with him, he threted the Malay woman as if she had no feelings or rights: “They’ve got no right to come [here]” [42; 25]. He also doesn’t care about his children.
The first 9 months after he was married to Doris, he had an easy going relationship; they lived on a higher standard than the natives, in the evening they played tennis, and their daily grind is filled with the English sense of humor with its ironic understatement, which Doris loved.
Guy was a “cheerful” [41; 11] gay man, who was “constantly laughing” [39; 15] and took life as “an amusing rather than a serious business” [40; 3]. Doris felt “happy and good-tempered” [39; 17] when she was together with him. But when Doris found out that Guy had had an arrangement with the Malay woman, she decided after a respite to move back to England. Guy’s life was empty again, and he ordered the Malay woman to come back again; he couldn't escape The Force of Circumstance.

As you can see, Guy is caught between cultures. On the one hand he was a British colonialist, who devoted himself to the country; on the other hand he felt a relatedness to the Malais and their culture. His life with Doris was built on lies: When he lived with Doris, he is well-dressed, before and after that he wore “a loose native jacket and a sarong” [65; 15].
And their day was planed: Before the night fell, they played tennis, and after playing tennis it was “the hour at which they had the first drink of the day” [47; 31].
In contrast to racial purity and self-control, which colonial ideology expects, Guy had children with a Malay woman. Also he bought the Malay woman for “two hundred Strains dollars” […], what shows that he wasn’t morally superior, and the fact he didn’t care about his children shows irresponsibility. As well he couldn’t restrain himself, because he threatened the Malay woman.
In contrast to Guy Doris represented the colonial imperialists: She is civilized, moral superiority, is self-restraint and maintains racial purity. In the end she has to go back to England.

(Linda)