Laura, the girl whom Malcolm dated briefly in Boston, was a respectable, educated, studious "Hill" girl. Malcolm was attracted to her primarily because she was not as snobbish as the other middle-class blacks in Ella's neighborhood. She was quiet, shy, and sensitive, but loved dancing. And Malcolm notes that in her dancing, her true personality seemed to come out. After her rejection by Malcolm, she eventually became a dope addict, a prostitute, and, finally, a lesbian, Malcolm accepts the blame for all of this; he feels she was the victim of his wild attempt to escape the strait-jacket of respectability. She represents Malcolm's last flirtation with respectability before plunging into a criminal career.