By Priss Asagari Takehitos
It was a hot day in Africa. Albert was sleeping in his bed, thinking about everything and his nephew’s death.
“You have him at your side, Pauna?“ Albert thought in his sleep and in that moment he remembered Candy’s tears.
“Candy please. Anthony wouldn’t want to see you like that.” It was his voice.
“But… but… “Candy said with tears in her eyes.
“You don’t have to cry,“ Albert said. “You have to be strong. Anthony is gone.”
In that moment he fell asleep. He was having a deep sleep.
“Oh Candy!“ he said in a romantic tone, kissing her lips and he touched her with his right hand, and in a soft way he entered in her.
“Oh Albert…“ It was Candy’s voice and she was in ecstasy.
In that moment Albert woke up. He was sweating and he was nervous. “What are you thinking about Albert? Candy is your adopted child!”
Meanwhile in the ship, Candy was sitting in her room. In her hands was the medal of the Prince on the Hill. “My hill prince,” she thought. In that moment she rose up from her bed and began to dress for the party that she had.
“Miss Candy, are you ready?“ It was George’s voice. He was looking after Candy like Albert told him.
“George, please take her to London.“ It was Albert’s voice. He was in the office sitting in a couch.
“It would be right that she go there,“ George told him. He wasn’t so sure that it would be good for her because of what happened with Anthony.
“My best friend,“ Albert said. “She needs to be far from here and the things that remind her of Anthony. She would be in good hands there with Archie and Stear.”
“Well maybe you are right, sir,” George said.
Albert was walking in his room. “I don’t know why I have those feelings for her? Can it be because she was crying in my arms?”
In that moment someone knocked on the door. It was a boy. “Mister… They need you in the nursery room.”
“Yes, I’m coming,“ Albert said, closing the door and putting on his sack.
In the ship, Candy was walking in the fog.
“There is a lot of fog,” she said a little bit worried. “I feel a little bit dizzy…“ When she saw that shadow…“Anthony…”
In that moment the boy with brown hair and blue eyes turned to see her face.
“You have seen a ghost little freckles,” he said making fun of her.
“What do you call me?“ Candy said.
“I said if you saw a ghost, freckles,“ Terry said.
“Hey don’t you call me freckles. My name is Candice White Andley,“ she said raising her hand. Terry laughed more. “What are you laughing about?”
“Don’t make those faces because your freckles moved,“ he said making a mockery of her.
“I wonder why Uncle William decided to go to Africa?“ It was Aunt’s Elroy’s voice because she wasn’t so happy about his reaction.
“Well Aunt Elroy, I really think that since he had been in charge of the fortune…. Well,” Sarah said.
“Yes I know since then he had become such an irresponsible man. I think that he misses his father,“ Aunt Elroy said. “Well…. You know that it wasn’t so good that this family didn’t have a head.”
“Yes I know, Aunt Elroy… but he was supposed to be in front of the family’s business, and not be on a trip.”
“It’s the same that I thought Sarah, but he is like his father,“ she said drinking a cup of tea.
“Well I see that is something that existed in the family,“ Sarah said.
And in Africa.
“I don’t know why they chose me as the head of the family,” Albert thought. “I was only matter of that council. Sister I miss my family.“ In that moment he remembered the last day of Pauna.
“Take care of Anthony, brother,“ she said with tears in her eyes.
“Yes, I’m going to do that,” Albert told her taking her hand.
“Please take care of him,“ she said before she passed away.
“And I can’t accomplish my promise, Sister,“ Albert thought trying to leave his house, because he felt bad that he couldn’t accomplish that promise.
“Every time that I saw Candy, there was something in that look that reminded me of my sister,“ he thought.
In the ship.
Candy was in her room again thinking of the boy who was laughing at her. “There was something strange in him when I saw him he was crying. I wonder why he had been crying?”
And in George’s room he was writing a letter. It was addressed to Albert.
“Mr. Albert William Andley…
In a few hours we are going to arrive in London. I’m going to take Candy to the San Paul’s college like you asked for. I hope that you arrive soon to America and you are made charge of the family business, I didn’t comment that Aunt Elroy is mad because you are on a trip and I told you in these lines.
And in the college.
“Stear, what are the subjects that we are going to have?” Archie said. He wasn’t so good because they left Candy in America.
“Brother you are so serious today,“ Stear said because he knew Archie so well.
“How could I be? Anthony is dead and now we are far from home,“ Archie said in a sad way.
“Yes it’s true brother… but that situation was out of our hands… it was Aunt Elroy’s fault,” Stear said.
“I know, brother,“ Archie said. “We couldn’t do anything. I feel bad because of that.”
“I know Archie, but what else can we do?” Stear said and in that moment he got close to the window of his room. “I imagine that Candy is happy in Pony’s home.”
“I hope that you are right… because Anthony’s death affected her so much,“ Archie said.
And in America Annie was at her house. She was knitting something and her mother was with her.
“That’s good daughter. You had become a lady,” her mother told Annie.
“Thank you mother,” she said in a soft tone in her voice.
“There is something that you should know,“ her mother commented.
“You are going to London,“ her mother finally said.
“To London,“ she said. “But why am I going there?”
“Well it’s too simple. Your father and I had a chat about it. It would be a great opportunity to have new friends,“ she said referring to her past and her friendship with Candy, because she looked like she was a bad influence for her daughter and she thought that London would be a good option. She wouldn’t be alone because it was a place where she was going to be with the Andley’s boys. She perfectly knew that her daughter had feelings for one of them.
“All right mother,“ she said. “Can I go?“ Using a soft tone in her voice.
She went up the stairs and went to her room and closed the door. “London, Archie is there,“ It was the only thing that she thought and she remembered the party that she was invited and her dance with Archie. “That dance I remember like it was yesterday. My mother wasn’t so agreeable that Candy danced with Anthony. I imagine that Candy is still sad because of Anthony’s death.”
“What a day!” Albert was really tired. “It has been a heavy day… really heavy… but I enjoy being here in Africa. I feel free as a wild animal.“ He put his hands in the window and he looked at the sunset.
At that moment a brunette girl with brown eyes knocked his door.
“Yes tell me,” Albert said.
“Well you are Albert, and they told me that I found you,“ she said.
“Who?” Albert said. “The doctor of the village wants you to help him with a girl who is in labor.”
Albert didn’t think twice and he went out to help Dr. Wilson. He was there for some time. He commented once that he had fallen in love with Africa so much that he decided to stay there. In a certain manner Albert understood him because since he had been there, he was in love with the freedom because no one knew his precedence. He arrived to that room with that woman. He remembered when he was 17 years old.
“Look William.“ It was the Aunt’s voice. “I want to introduce Marlene.”
“Nice to meet you,“ Albert said in a shy way.
“Nice to meet you,“ Marlene said. She was a beautiful girl with brown hair, honey eyes and white skin.
To Albert, he didn’t like anything since the first time that he saw her. He knew that her aunt was finding a girlfriend that corresponded to his social status. Because he was going to become the head of the family Andrew at the council’s decision.
He was in the room.
“Please, Albert.“ It was the doctor. He wasn’t looking at him. “Pass me the clothes.”
“Sure,“ Albert said giving them.
“Push,“ the doctor said again. “Push, with more force.”
The woman was lying down pushing. At that moment Albert could see with his blue eyes that the woman was giving birth to a beautiful black baby. The doctor was holding the child and he gave some pats to the baby to breathe and in those moments the girl began to cry.
In that moment the doctor saw Albert and said, “Albert pass me the scissors.”
When the doctor cut the umbilical cord he passed to Albert to clean the girl. When Albert had that girl in his arms he felt amazed and surprised at the same time.
“Wow, you are so beautiful!“ Albert said as he cleaned the girl. When he finished he passed her to the mother with care.
Meanwhile in London the next day.
Candy was in one of the corridors when she saw Stear and Archie. “Stear, Archie!“ she said and she was excited.
“Candy?“ They said at the same time.
“It’s really you,“ Archie said, excited to see her.
“Yes it’s me,” she said smiling, the face of the Andley’s boys were illuminated by the happiness.
“But why are you here?“ Stear said because it was strange for him.
“Well, Uncle William was the one that ordered that I had to come to London,” she said.
“Then Uncle William was the one that had such idea,“ Archie said happily.
“Yes it was him, and George told me.” Was the thing that Candy said.
“That’s so good,” Stear said.
An in America.
Annie was happy because of her trip. “I hope that Archie would be happy to see me,“ she continued standing up in the ship looking to the distant Chicago.
“You are in a good mood,” her mother said.
“Yes, I am mother,“ Annie said.
In that moment her father entered the room. “Thank you father.”
“You don’t have to thank me darling,“ he said getting near to his daughter and holding her. He gave her a kiss on her forehead. “It would be better for you, that you knew new people and had a good education to become a lady.”
When her mother listened to those words she felt very flattered. “Yes, your father is right.”
And in Africa.
Albert was reading the letter that George send to him and felt better. “At least Candy is in London with Archie and Stear. They would know how to take care of you.“ And he thought that he will have to get back to America soon and handle the family business. “Since I have remembered, my family treated me like I was someone so important, but I’m just a man that wants to be free.”
“You have to go.“ It was the voice of Marlene. She had been with him since they were 17 years old. He didn’t want to have with her a romantic relationship. They were only friends.
“Yes I have to go. I’m going to Africa,“ he said, very secure of himself.
“But how? Why are you going there? You can’t go!” She said, showing for the first time her feelings.
He took Marlene’s hand. “Yes, I’m going there and the trip would be for some months.”
She looked at him with tears in her eyes. “William,“ she said, putting her hand in his face.
“I couldn’t tell her that I didn’t love her,” Albert thought looking at how some giraffes ran for the plain.
“But how are you going to Africa?“ It was Aunt’s Elroy voice.
“Aunt Elroy,“ he said with all his respect. “I’m 18 years old now and that is something that I want to do. Don’t tell me anything. I made a decision.”
“But William,“ Aunt Elroy said. “Marlene is in love with you.“ She was worried because Marlene told her.
“Aunt Elroy,“ Albert insisted. “It could be that she is in love with me, but I don’t have the same feelings for her, and we both knew that her family is interested only in the wealth of the family.”
Aunt Elroy kept quiet without anything to say to him. Then in Albert’s mind, he remembered his first encounter with Candy.
“That girl, since I met her she was a child and I had at that time my friends like Marlene. I remembered that she was crying and she laughed because I was wearing a red skirt.“ Albert smiled. “And because of Anthony’s request I adopted her as a daughter. Anthony didn’t know about my existence. He only saw me when he was a child and he ran through the garden. When his mother passed away he dedicated his life to take care of that garden with so much love.”
Then Albert thought that it would be a good idea to visit Candy to be more sure that she was fine. “It would be better that I saw Candy to prove that she is all right.“ In that moment Dr. Wilson knocked at his door.
“Dr. Wilson,” Albert said.
“Albert,“ he said. Dr. Wilson had in his hands a bottle of wine. “What is the party for?”
“Well it’s simple, son,“ the doctor said. “I want to celebrate with you because you were a good helper. I was doubting about your capacity, to be honest with you, but in these past months you have been the best.”
“Thank you,“ Albert said. He really felt that he had been so useful for the first time in his life, and he could help so many people.
Both cheered until the night fell.
“Uncle William sent me to this college and I’m not going to disappoint him,“ Candy said. She was in her room looking through the darkness of the garden, but in that moment she thought of Terry. “It was strange the attitude of that boy, making fun of me because of my freckles.”
In the Andley’s room
“It’s good that Candy is here in college,” Stear said.
“Yes, I think so. I think that it was a good decision from Uncle William,” Archie said.
“Now I think that she would forget about Anthony,“ Archie said.
“I hope that you are right, but one thing is for sure with this change she would live different things,” Stear said.