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Lydia Quigley is a brutal woman who runs a seraglio in Soho. She has a decades-long rivalry with Margaret Wells. Margaret was once a girl in her employ, but she escaped with her long-time friend Nancy Birch. She has one son, Charles, whom she views as weak and useless. Despite her establishment's pristine and genteel façade, Lydia's employees spend their nights trapped behind locked doors. While Lydia has retired from direct sexual service, her active employees labor under ever-deepening financial debt.
Lydia is accused of being 'a kidnapping pimp' more than once. She has neither affection nor respect for other harlots. On an evening when her more-vulnerable contemporaries are dragged from their brothels half-naked and screaming, she sits safe in her carriage and enjoys 'the sport.' Unlike her rival Margaret, Lydia protects no one.