Ralph Argent is Christopher Chant 's uncle -- the brother of his mother, and an all-around despicable villain.  He leads a secre villainous life as the Wraith, whose smuggling operations of dangerous magical supplies from all the known worlds is greatly enhanced when he discovers that his nephew Christopher is an extremely adept spirit traveler.


Ralph is described as 'foxy-looking', with reddish hair, reddish tweedy clothing, and  a personality that is seductive and self-interested.  He pulls Christopher into his schemes quite gradually, and keeps him in the dark about what he is actually doing, although the secrecy of the spirit travels and their various objectives is clearly something that Christopher knows he needs to hide from the other adults around him.

Allies and MinionsEdit

Ralph Argent's schemes are supported by the efforts of Mordecai Roberts, a member of Gabriel de Witt's staff and a talented spirit traveler in his own right.  Although the lure of money and possibly a quarrel between Mordecai and Miss Rosalie led him to doublecross Gabriel, when he was caught and exposed as an agent of the Wraith, Mordecais refused to betray Christopher.

When finally meeting Uncle Ralph after having been at the Castle for several months, Christopher realized with regret how mean and shoddy the man was.  He recognized that he would never fall for that kind of easy & false charm again.