Dr. Marigold Woodruff Richards married Horace (Klondike) Lesley. She saved baby Marigold Lesley's life, so Marigold is her namesake. Marigold looks up to her greatly for advice and empathy.

She is 35 years old when Magic for Marigold begins, and had practiced in Harmony for two years.


He had never seen Dr. Richards before--save at a distance, or spinning past him in her smart little runabout. She was in her office and came forward to meet him gravely sweet.

She had a little, square, wide-lipped, straight-browed face like a boy's. Not pretty but haunting. Wavy brown hair with one teasing, unruly little curl that would fall down on her forehead, giving her a youthful look in spite of her thirty-five years. What a dear face! So wide at the cheekbones--so deep grey-eyed. With such a lovely, smiling, generous mouth. Some old text of Sunday-school days suddenly flitted through Klondike Lesley's dazed brain:

"She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life."

For just a second their eyes met and locked. Only a second. But it did the work of years. The irresistible woman had met the immovable man and the inevitable had happened. She might have had thick ankles--only she hadn't; her mother might have meowed all over the church. Nothing would have mattered to Klondike Lesley. She made him think of all sorts of lovely things, such as sympathy, kindness, generosity, and women who were not afraid to grow old. He had the most extraordinary feeling that he would like to lay his head on her breast and cry, like a little boy who had got hurt, and have her stroke his head and say,

"Never mind--be brave--you'll soon feel better, dear."Magic for Marigold ch.2

Marigold sometimes wondered whom she wanted to be like when she grew up. In some moods she wanted to be like Mother. But Mother was "put upon." Generally she thought she wanted to be like Aunt Marigold--who had a little way of saying things. Nobody else could have said them. Marigold always felt she would recognise one of Aunt Marigold's sayings if she met it in her porridge. And when she said only, "It's a fine day," her voice had a nice confidential tone that made you feel nobody else knew it was a fine day--that it was a lovely secret shared between you. And when you had supper at Aunt Marigold's she made you take a third helping.

Magic for Marigold, ch.3