Sunday, March 23, 2014

Antoinette Clancy, Chp. 3, Gen. 5, 1800

~Spring, 1800~

     Antoinette couldn't sleep.  It was quite the untimely hour, but she was not fatigued.  She just had a restless feeling.  There was something that needed to be done.

     Antoinette sighed.  Time had passed, indeed, but she still had dreams.  Aspirations.  And she needed to move forward.  She had spent hours sitting at the top of the attic steps, listening closely to her brothers' cello sessions, straining for the tutor's every word, closing her eyes as each painfully timid note floated up to her (the boys were absolutely terrible at playing the instrument, and had no confidence, to boot).

     She spent hours at night while everyone was asleep, stealing Bartholomew's notes (Franklin did not bother himself with the chore of paying attention) and song pieces to try to learn on her own.  It may have been difficult, but with her brother's neat handwriting and her memory of the tutor's words, a tenacious Antoinette taught herself how to play.
     But even though she was capable of that great feat, she knew that it would not be enough to become a great cellist.  She needed someone to help her.  She needed feedback.  She had an idea.  Another plan.

     "Franklin?" She whispered.  "Franklin, wake up.  I need your help."
     A muffled groan.

     "Antoinette?  You should not be awake now!  The spirits could attack you!" 
     "Stop being ridiculous.  I really wish you would cease this... this utter rubbish about spirits and ghosts!  Whatever you've been doing in that forest--"
     "What do you want, anyway?  Did you wake me up just to scold me?  Because if so, just leave me be.  I am trying to sleep."
     "I need your help with something.  Please wake Bartholomew and meet me in the music room.  I want you to see something."

     After a little more convincing, Franklin and Bartholomew finally agreed to follow Antoinette to the music room.
     "Franklin.  Bartholomew.  This is something that I've been working on for a few years.  When you two were having your cello sessions, I tried to learn along with you by listening from the top of the steps.  I stole your music when you went to bed and I played by myself at night.  I want you to listen to me play.  Please."

 Hope is a little lemon-drop candy

 It might go along with a touch of tea

A hint of sweet in a bitter sea

It will bring a smile back to thee.

    It was a sweet, melancholy tune.

     "Nettie... that's all very well and good, but...  I mean, it's very impressive, but..."

     "W-what do you mean, 'but'?" Antoinette's heart sank.
     "We all know good old Bart doesn't know what he's talking about, Nettie.  I think you did a nice job, and it seems like you have some talent, but who on Earth cares?"  Franklin laughed.

     Antoinette shot a glance of ice at Franklin.
    "You know what, Franklin?  Just leave.  I have not the slightest clue why I even invited you down here.  And you know what?  Even if you don't care about my playing, I do!  So just go back up to bed and obsess about ghosts just a little more!"
     But Franklin only laughed and barely budged.

     "Look, Nettie.  I think what you have done is impressive, too, but Franklin has a point.  Even though it's evident that you have some skill, what could you do with it?  I know you have done much sewing with Mother, so why don't you just forget about this instrument and work on that instead?"

     "Just forget about the instrument?  Just forget?  Have you lost your mind?"
     Antoinette received a blank stare.
     "I love that instrument.  And I am not going to forget about it.  And you know what else?  I'm disappointed in you.  I thought that you would be there for me.  I have done this all by myself, and I was just hoping that you would be supportive of me, since no one else is!"

     "But it is just a trinket!  There's more to life than that.  I would support you if you chose to do something more productive--"
     "No, Bartholomew!  It is not just a trinket!  It is music.  It is love.  It is my way of showing the world that I am just as talented or even more talented than you are!  I am sick and tired of you two always getting everything while I am forced to follow a specific life expectation of cooking and sewing.  I am fully able to do whatever you can.  In fact, I think I can do more."

     "You think I have freedom, Antoinette?  You think I get to do what I want?  You are absolutely wrong!  I go over to Father's where he forces me to study book upon book about law and advocacy.  I hate it.  And you know that.  I've spent hours telling you about the stars, and how much I love gazing at the above, and Father would never accept that.   You are still innocent from Father.  Count yourself lucky to live in a world where you are safe and of peace of mind.  You still don't know what he did to our family."

     "Well, tell me already so I can join your worthless, ridiculous little pity party!"  Antoinette screamed.

     "Father... Well, he cheated on Mother.  And I witnessed it when we were very young."

     "And, Nettie, that's the real reason why we left.  I did not want to tell you, but if it helps you understand me a little better, and why I have such a grudge against him..."


     "You know, Bartholomew?"  Antoinette said slowly, voice trembling,  "That's all very well and good, but... I mean, it's very impressive, but... in the end, if you truly cared, you would support me no matter what happened to you, or Mother, or us.  You would support me no matter how important the cello is to you, because you know how important it is to me."

     "Bartholomew, I have always believed in you."  She turned and walked away.


     Things seemed to be going well for Anne.  She was finally happy at last.  Truly happy.  She did not feel like she was lying to herself, like when she had been married to Antoine.

     She knew her children were being brought up to become very nice young men and women, thanks to Ivan's entrance into her life.  Anne still shuddered at the thought of poor Bartholomew trudging along to his father's, but she took pride in knowing that he at least spent most of his time away from Antoine's.

     Sometimes, Anne wondered about the old lemon-drop house.  Who was taking care of it now?  Ah, how the times change...
    Antoinette entered the room, looking a touch troubled, and Anne shifted over to make room for her daughter to sit down.

     "Mother, how I have looked up to you!"
     Anne, touched, smiled.  "Me?  But whatever could you mean by that?"

     Antoinette looked away.  "Mother, I am nearly sixteen years old.  I am old enough to take on the truth.  I want to hear it from you, and I would like you to be completely honest with me.  Please."
     "Anything, my dear.  Anything you ask, you shall hear the truth from me."

     "I want to know what really happened the night you took us and left Father."

     "Oh!"  Anne was shocked, but she knew that her daughter was too intelligent for any 'dancing around the subject'.
     "Well, Antoine and I had been having some difficulties getting along.  You see, I was extremely upset with his treatment of me, but mostly of you.  Franklin, too.  All he cared about was Bartholomew, and carrying on the family name.  And, of course, having me behave like he believed I should."

     "He once told me that he would find another wife if I continued acting in a manner that was inconsistent with his wishes.  That's exactly what he did, in a way.  That night... I found him with another woman.  It was the final straw.
     "I did not want to tell you because I wanted you to remember him in the best spirit possible.  But since you want only the truth, there you have it."

     "Mother, you are so strong.  You did not let him control you.  You did something that made you a hero."

     "I'm flattered you feel that way, dear, but..."

     "No, Mother.  You did something so admirable.  Instead of letting him control you, you took charge of your own decisions.  You did something all by yourself, without anyone's help.  You didn't have anyone, but that didn't matter to you."

     "Maybe you'll see it one day, Mother.  But you are my hero.  You have taught me to be a fighter."

     "Antoinette, always fight for what you believe in.  You are such an intelligent young woman and I know you have so much more potential than sewing and cooking could ever offer."

     "You're right, Mother.  You're right."


     A rather mysterious figure stood outside the Clancy Mansion.  Straightening the glasses, the figure started for the abode.

     Clearly nervous, the figure climbed up the steps, fidgeting with those baggy brown trousers.

     The figure crossed the foyer and headed for the steps.

     It seemed to take an eternity to reach the top.

     Franklin seemed to be arguing with the tutor about something when the figure finally turned towards them.
    "Excuse me, sir," the figure said with a very strained attempt at a deep voice.

     "I, uh, heard you might be able to tutor me.  I am quite the talented cellist, better than my friend, Franklin, here."


*The Antique Legacy*
Antoinette Clancy


  1. This is such an amazing story! Best legacy that I've ever read :)
    I just found it today and I've read all of it. Can't wait to see what happens next <3

  2. Hello! I've got no idea if you ever intend to continue this amazing legacy, but I wanted to let you know, you (among others) inspired me to make my own historical legacy! It's over at It would mean a lot for me if you checked it out! Thank you~