Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Antoinette Clancy, Chp. 1, Gen. 5, 1794

July, 1794
Dear Diary,

     My name is Antoinette Clancy, and I want to tell you about my life.  

     Well, I guess that sounds a little too precocious; I am only a small girl of ten.  Either way, if you wish, Diary, pretend I am a famous woman who did something inspiring.

     My family has changed so much in the last few months.  That's when Mother first met Mr. Ivan Clancy...

     It was when we were still living with the Herrons.  Mother couldn't find any work to really support us, and I know she felt really embarrassed to have to rely on the Herrons all the time.  But what else could she do?  It's not like Father was really in the helping...


      To the right of Antoine's mansion (her former husband's mansion), another mansion had recently been built.  In Anne's ever so humble opinion, this brick mansion was classier than Antoine's wooded one, but she supposed that she was biased.  After all, all the bitter pain Antoine had caused her by degrading her and telling her that her sole purpose in life was to mother the children and perform monotonous 'wifely duties' -- and even cheating on her to boot, why wouldn't  Anne be biased in these thoughts?  Anne wanted to conclude that any other man would be better than Antoine, but she wasn't completely sure.

     Anne, despite her past of being quiet to the point of being mute for years, mustered up the courage to introduce herself to this new inhabitant of Charleston.  Whoever it was might be another Antoine, but he might not be.  

     She daintily knocked on the front door and waited politely for the man to come out.

      When the man exited his home, Anne could not stop staring at him.  There was something about him that she could not put her finger on.  When she looked into his eyes she saw something familiar: the polished dullness of hope withered down, something she realized she held in her own eyes.
     But why would this man have problems?  He's a man, after all, and he can do anything he wants to!  What would be so terrible in his life?
     But what irked Anne was that the man stared back.  Did he see what she held in her eyes?
     "Uh, hello.  My name is Anne Barnes.  I live nearby.  I just wanted to welcome you to the neighborhood."

     "Well, thank you, Madame Barnes.  You're the first person to welcome me.   My name is Ivan Clancy.  You're last name is Barnes?  You must be Antoine's wife.  I work with him, actually.  We've done a  number of projects together."

     "Oh, uh... well.  I mean, I used to be Antoine's wife.  But now...  It's just that the relationship was not really... healthy for either of us.  Or the children."
     Ivan had a faraway look in his eyes.  "I've been divorced, too."
     "Oh, I'm really sorry, Mr. Clancy."
     "Please, Ms. Barnes.  Call me Ivan." He shook his head solemnly.  "My former wife was a mistress to many, I hear.  She left me about six years ago."
     Ivan cleared his throat.

     "Maybe I have been through something similar."  Anne murmured.  
     "I'm so sorry, Ms. Barnes.  You deserve only the best," Ivan said sincerely.
     "I wish my former husband had been more like you," Anne admitted.  "I wish he were someone who actually cared about more than himself.  Someone who'd love the children and live for them, someone who would respect his wife, not restrict her in the most dehumanizing way possible.  And certainly someone who wouldn't cheat on his wife with a woman named May!"  Anne spat out the name, unable to have forgotten it for over ten years.
     Mr. Clancy's eyes widened and he appeared to be very uncomfortable.  "I-I-I'm sorry, Ms. Barnes.  You'll have to leave promptly.  Goodbye."  And with that, Mr. Clancy retreated back inside his home and closed and locked the door.  
     He left Anne in the blazing heat, confused and teary-eyed at being deserted.


     Mother tells us that she was extremely distraught when she returned to the Herron home (our temporary house) after her first encounter with Mr. Clancy.  I think she felt like no one really understood her -- at least no man.  
     She never has told us why, exactly, she and my father have divorced, but I can tell that the reason was very serious.  Somehow, Bartholomew might know.  He does NOT act uppity or hoity-toity about it, but once I saw Mother scolding him and telling him to keep it a secret for now.

     But Mother knew that Mr. Clancy was something different.  She was afraid that she would never see him again, based on how their first encounter ended...  In fact, it was a month later before she even saw him again. 

     Somehow, he had figured out where we lived.  And he came to see my mother!


      "Oh, Mr. Clancy!"  Anne said, unable to hide the shock in her voice when she opened the door to find Ivan standing there, looking embarrassed.  "Well, come on inside."

     There was a long stretch of silence.  Normally, being quite accustomed to the silence as a child, silence did not bother Anne, but this time, it worried her.  
     "Listen, Mr. Clancy," Anne began, "I greatly apologize for anything I might have said that bothered you-"
     "Oh, no, dear Ms. Barnes.  I just wanted to apologize for being curt with you.  You see, I sometimes have great anxiety when...  Oh, it doesn't matter.  I just want to apologize for my behaviors."  
     But Anne wasn't too satisfied with Ivan's claim.  She could tell he was hiding something.  She could tell that he had suffered before and was trying to protect himself, but from what?  Was he intimidated by his past, or his present with being in a new town?  Maybe he was scared of his future and what would come?

"I am really surprised that you came to apologize, Mr. Clancy.  Men like you usually do not spend time on women like me."
     Ivan gazed into Anne's eyes.  "I'm just doing what is gentlemanly, nothing more."
     Anne tried to hide the hurt from her face, but could not.  "So you're just like all the others.  So you don't really care, you just wanted to apologize so that you can tell all your friends how gentlemanly you are.  I understand."  But she did not.
     "That's not true, Anne.  You are special."  Ivan seemed to surprise himself with the statement.
     "If that is the case, then why didn't you say so before?"  Anne asked.

     But mysterious, old Ivan mumbled that he had to leave and scurried off without an answer.

     Anne was mystified and frustrated.  She wished she could tell Ivan her feelings for him; she was beginning to feel like she was truly falling in love, but did not know why.  She barely knew him, and barely talked to him.  Yet, she could tell that he was harboring deep secrets and that seemed to draw him very close to her, because she had secrets of her own.  He seemed like the only one who would understand.

     The next day, Ivan showed up on the porch again, looking a bit nervous.
     "Do you wish to speak to me?" Anne asked, unsure of what to expect.  Ivan nodded.  They sat down on the bench on the porch.

     "Look, Mr. Clancy.  I really do not know how much more of this I can take.  You apologize for being brusque and curt, but then you turn around and do it again.  I really do not appreciate your behavior.  What does it mean?  And, anyway, it took you a month to apologize for the first time!" 
     "I know, Ms. Barnes.  From the bottom of my heart, I give my sincerest apologies for any and all inconveniences I may have caused.  But, please listen.  Just give me a chance to explain."

     "As I told you earlier, my wife was a mistress to many.  She was not afraid to have her lovers, and she did not seem to care if I knew it or not.  My wife frequently traveled with me on my business trips, and many times Antoine held meetings that I would attend at his mansion.  I had thought that my wife and Antoine were just acquaintances, but I suppose I have been mistaken, because when you brought up that the woman your husband cheated on you with, that her name was May, I knew.  My wife's first name was May."
     Ivan shook his head sadly.  "I suppose that you can imagine how traumatic that was for me to learn.  My own good friend, Antoine!  He was one of my wife's lovers?  So, recently, I had to end my friendship with Antoine."

     Anne, though shocked, had to admit that this was a logical explanation for Ivan's behavior.
     "I'm so sorry, Mr. Clancy-"
     "Ivan!" He insisted.
     "Ivan.  I am so sorry, and that is a good reason for why you behaved in such a way.  Gosh, I had not a clue that our lives were so connected."
     Ivan nodded.  "Antoine cannot be trusted."

     Anne nodded sadly in agreement.  "I was so young when I first met him, and I thought that all his flattery meant that he truly cared about me, but all he wanted was a woman to bear a son that would carry on his family line of advocates.  My son Bartholomew despises visiting his father for law studies because all his father cares about is using Bartholomew to become the next famous Barnes advocate.  Antoine does not even care about my daughter because she is female.  Antoine does not care about my other son because he is 'not as intelligent' as Bartholomew.  What a horrible, twisted way to think about people!"

     "But now I know what I want in a husband.  Not only does the man need to care about me, but he needs to care about my children.  I must be respected and not seen as inferior.  I don't know if there are any men like that in the world."

     "Anne, there's something I really need to tell you," Ivan said quietly.
     "Well, go on, Ivan.  What is it?"

     "I do not know how to say this.  Ever since I met you, I've had this strong feeling.  You...  I...  It's just that...  I have this feeling of anxiety because..."  Ivan shook his head.  "I do not know how to say this so that you will understand.  Let me start over."

     "Anne, I think I love you."


     For most people, to hear the words, "I think I love you" sounds insulting, but for my mother, it wasn't.  To her, I think it was the most beautiful compliment in the world.  My mother told us children that we are not able to understand right now since we are so young.  I asked her to explain it to me one day and she promises that she will.  I think my mother has a lot of things that she will have to explain to me one day, but that is besides the point.
     The point is, my mother fell deeply in love with Mr. Ivan Clancy and Mr. Ivan Clancy married my mother.  And now my name is Antoinette Clancy instead of Antoinette Barnes.  But everyone calls me Nettie for short.

     It is quite the untimely hour, and I would prefer not getting scolded for being awake.  I did not get to finish telling you about my life, Diary, but I promise I will tell you more tomorrow.

     Your friend,


*The Antique Legacy*
Antoinette Clancy


  1. Replies
    1. Teehee! Maybe he ain't so bad... ;) Thank you for the comment!

  2. I lost this for awhile..but I'm glad I re found it again. I have several chapters up of Gen 1 and one chapter of Gen 2 of my Fairy Tale news legacy.

    But I think you made one mistake. When Anne is speaking about the only reason that her ex-husband had to marry her, you said "father", when I think you meant bear a son.

    1. Ooh, a Fairy Tale legacy... that sounds really cool :)

      Thanks so much for pointing that out about Anne! You're right! I'm going to change it now.

      Thanks for the comment!

  3. your welcome and the FT News Legacy is on blogspot too here's the link: (I don't have chapter 3 up yet, since its going to be my hardest chapter since half of it (or more) will be in B&W (black and white). Celoptra/Hermione same person.