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In the novel Five Little Pigs, John Rattery is the fiancé of Carla Lemarchant. When Carla read a letter from her mother Caroline Crale declaring that she was innocent of her conviction for the murder of her husband Amyas Crale, Carla asked Poirot to investigate and find out what really happened. To John, however. what was in the past did not matter. What was more important to him was the future. Carla however disagreed. Getting at the truth to her was really about the future because there might be a taint of violence or evil in her ancestry which they already know about. Sometimes she had seen John throw her a quick glance. Suppose, she says, they quarrel in the future and John looks at her and wonders what is in her mind?

John plays only a background role in the plot, showing up only at the end during the denouement. John is described as tall, with an anxious face, square jaws and steady grey eyes.

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