Spies

by

Michael Frayn

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Keith’s Father / Mr. Ted Hayward Character Analysis

A stoic ex-officer who displays his military achievement for killing five Germans in the First World War, Keith’s father largely spends his time doing work around the house and the garden. The garage is his personal abode where he completes different kinds of projects. From Stephen’s description, he works for the Home Guard, a volunteer organization for those who are ineligible for military service, which is very likely embarrassing for Keith’s father and contributes to his desire to maintain strict control of his household and family. It is also likely why Keith tells Stephen that he actually “works for the Secret Service.” He exerts an enormous influence on Keith, who echoes his father’s cold snobbishness and inherits his domineering and violent personality. Keith’s father never acknowledges Stephen’s presence unless he believes Stephen knows something he shouldn’t. Frayn portrays Keith’s father as being violent to his wife, who covers her neck with a scarf to hide the sadistic method with which he punishes her—cutting her with his bayonet, the same method that Keith uses on Stephen. Although he generally uses casual and even playful language, Keith’s father also frequently threatens Keith with physical punishment. He is referred to as “Ted” by Keith’s mother near the end of the story.

Keith’s Father / Mr. Ted Hayward Quotes in Spies

The Spies quotes below are all either spoken by Keith’s Father / Mr. Ted Hayward or refer to Keith’s Father / Mr. Ted Hayward . For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Class Difference and Social Status Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Picador edition of Spies published in 2003.
Chapter 3 Quotes

I feel more strongly than ever the honor of my association with Keith. His family have taken on the heroic proportions of characters in a legend—noble father and traitorous mother playing out the never-ending conflict between good and evil, between light and dark.

Page Number: 57
Explanation and Analysis:
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Spies PDF

Keith’s Father / Mr. Ted Hayward Character Timeline in Spies

The timeline below shows where the character Keith’s Father / Mr. Ted Hayward appears in Spies. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 2
Class Difference and Social Status Theme Icon
Imagination vs. Reality Theme Icon
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
Secrecy Theme Icon
...swindles.” Stephen says that Keith would have discovered the secret passageway the Juice used—if only Keith’s father hadn’t called him inside. (full context)
Class Difference and Social Status Theme Icon
Memory and the Self Theme Icon
...the Hayward house, deciding what to do. He explains that they could do the chore Keith’s father had instructed Keith to finish, which usually was to oil his special bicycle. Keith rode... (full context)
Class Difference and Social Status Theme Icon
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
...his mother to visit Stephen’s house; Stephen believes that Keith’s mother would have deferred to Keith’s father , and Keith’s father would have given Keith another chore to avoid allowing his son... (full context)
Class Difference and Social Status Theme Icon
Imagination vs. Reality Theme Icon
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
Stephen then describes Keith’s father , who spent most of his time working around the house and the garden. However,... (full context)
Class Difference and Social Status Theme Icon
Imagination vs. Reality Theme Icon
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
Keith’s father was a man of few words, except for the occasional “old boy” or “old bean”... (full context)
Class Difference and Social Status Theme Icon
Memory and the Self Theme Icon
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
...inferior family—Stephen was “encumbered with a brother,” for example. He specifically compares his father with Keith’s father . Stephen’s father was an unremarkable man, who spoke few words and worked a dull... (full context)
Chapter 3
Class Difference and Social Status Theme Icon
Secrecy Theme Icon
...are interesting. The older Stephen states that his younger self was not curious about whether Keith’s father knew about Keith’s mother’s secret. Instead, he felt regretful for having received such kindness from... (full context)
Class Difference and Social Status Theme Icon
Imagination vs. Reality Theme Icon
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
...would rather have Mrs. Sheldon or Mrs. Stott be a German spy. He even considers Keith’s father being a spy, but quickly changes his mind since he would be too afraid to... (full context)
Secrecy Theme Icon
...that he ignores her questions and bolts out of the house. Since he is sure Keith’s father has not finished his lunch yet, Stephen hopes to pass the time with the other... (full context)
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
Secrecy Theme Icon
...thinks about how unfortunate it will be when Keith’s mother is exposed. When he hears Keith’s father whistling outside the house, Stephen knows that the coast is clear for him to go... (full context)
Imagination vs. Reality Theme Icon
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
...of the “loyal squire and swordbearer” in the epic “story” of the Haywards. Stephen sees Keith’s father and mother as being locked in a battle between good and evil, and Keith himself... (full context)
Imagination vs. Reality Theme Icon
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
Secrecy Theme Icon
Stephen makes some suggestions of what to do next—like telling Keith’s father , or the police, or writing a letter to their neighbor Mr. McAfee, but Keith... (full context)
Chapter 6
Class Difference and Social Status Theme Icon
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
Secrecy Theme Icon
...that the old tramp may have died from fear. At the Haywards’ house they find Keith’s father , dressed in his Home Guard uniform and waiting for Keith’s mother, who is not... (full context)
Chapter 7
Class Difference and Social Status Theme Icon
Imagination vs. Reality Theme Icon
...more projects with Keith. Keith heads to the garage to polish his cricket bat when Keith’s father asks him for their thermos. (full context)
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
Keith states that he doesn’t know what happened to the thermos, and Keith’s father makes him go inside and hits his hands with a cane. Stephen, feeling guilty, waits... (full context)
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
Secrecy Theme Icon
...dress. Keith’s mother starts to get angry at Stephen, but then Stephen tells her that Keith’s father is looking for the thermos flask, and caned Keith thinking he had taken it. Keith’s... (full context)
Chapter 8
Secrecy Theme Icon
...is shut off from the well-ordered world of the Haywards forever. He sees Keith and Keith’s father outside the house once in a while, but never Keith’s mother. He considers the idea... (full context)
Imagination vs. Reality Theme Icon
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
Secrecy Theme Icon
...Then Stephen and Barbara see Keith’s mother leaving the house with letters in her hand. Keith’s father comes outside to walk with her to the post, which Stephen initially thinks is strangely... (full context)
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
Secrecy Theme Icon
...lingers, contemplating the sky, and then pretends that her heel strap is broken and sends Keith’s father on alone with the letters—except for one. She then comes over to the hideout, looking... (full context)
Chapter 9
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
Secrecy Theme Icon
...Auntie Dee against each other. Feeling that he’s “ruined everything”, he apologizes. Then he sees Keith’s father come from the backyard and start looking around for his wife. As Keith’s mother tidies... (full context)
Memory and the Self Theme Icon
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
At that moment Keith’s father approaches the lookout and asks Stephen to have a word with him. Barbara hurriedly puts... (full context)
Class Difference and Social Status Theme Icon
Memory and the Self Theme Icon
Imagination vs. Reality Theme Icon
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
Secrecy Theme Icon
In the garage, Keith’s father goes to his workbench and tells Stephen to stop playing silly games. Stephen notes that... (full context)
Memory and the Self Theme Icon
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
Secrecy Theme Icon
...sees the basket, which has clearly been rummaged through, and tries to take it, but Keith’s father moves it out of her grasp. There is a long and terrifying silence, and finally... (full context)
Chapter 10
Imagination vs. Reality Theme Icon
War, Paranoia, and Belonging Theme Icon
...mother’s nickname) had sent him, and this shocks Stephen because he had previously only heard Keith’s father call her that. The older Stephen states that at that point, he did not think... (full context)
Imagination vs. Reality Theme Icon
Secrecy Theme Icon
...or nod his head in response, says she can’t come. The man then realizes that Keith’s father , “Ted,” must have found out the truth, and he groans. He then asks Stephen... (full context)