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Description by Candice

Translation by Aleksandra

 

Aunt Elroy, who has come from Chicago, invited Stear and Archie and they could meet Annie, who was going to attend the St. Paul’s College too. But Candy was not invited. Mr. Brighton, Annie’s foster-father, secretly met Candy and asked her to tell nobody that Annie also had grown up in Ponny’s orphanage.

 

Annie is smiling again.

The lesson at school began. The nun brought a new schoolgirl.

“I would like to introduce your new friend to you.”

“My name is Annie Brighton”, the newcomer said. “I came from America. Nice to meet you.”

“There are already two girls from America in our class”, the teacher said. “Eliza Legan and Candice White Audrey. Stand up, girls.”

“Hello”, Candy and Eliza stood up.

“Candy…” Annie thought.

“I did not expect to see you so soon”, Candy said to herself.

“Help Annie, please, till she gets used to our school.”

“Yes, Sister.”

“The place near Candice is free. Annie, you can sit there.”

“Sister…” Annie said. “I know Eliza and may I… may I… sit near her?”

“Annie!” Candy was shocked. “Annie avoids me… She doesn’t even want to sit near me.”

“But the place near Eliza…”

“Sister, I’ll sit near Candy”, Patty stood up.

“Thank you, Patricia”, the teacher smiled. “Annie, you can take your seat.”

Annie stopped for a moment near Candy and then went to her place. Both girls did not raise their eyes.

“What has happened, Candy?” Patty asked when she sat near her friend.

“Nothing. Thanks, Patricia, that you sat near me.”

“Please stop talking”, the nun said. “Let’s begin the lesson.”

“I am sorry, Candy”, Annie was looking at the blond girl. “I could not sit near you, we would begin talking like old friends then…”

The lesson has finished.

“Candy was brought up in Ponny’s Orphanage or somewhere like it”, Eliza’s friend told the newcomer. “But then she was adopted by the Audreys.”

“Not ‘somewhere like it’, but in Ponny’s Orphanage!” Candy came to them. Annie again lowered her eyes. “It is a very beautiful place in the mountains, remember, please!” and she left.

“I can’t tell them that I was brought up in Ponny’s House too!” Annie was repeating to herself.

“This girl from Ponny’s House is very cheeky”, Eliza said.

“Annie, you turned pale”, Louise noticed.

“I am fine, do not worry…” Annie raised her head.

***

Candy was trying to read in the library.

“Annie”, she thought. “Probably, you are afraid that I can tell somebody that you too were brought up in Ponny’s Orphanage. And such your attitude to me does not mean that you do not love me any more… I still keep the ribbon which you left me in the stable, remember?.. Annie…” A guy put a hand on her shoulder. “Stear!”

“Hi, Candy, how are you doing?”

“Stear, we will have troubles if any sister sees us.”

“Do not worry, Candy. Our Sister allowed me. And I got a permission for you to go to Annie Brighton’s meeting. You are a member of the Audrey family too, so you can meet her as it is supposed to.”

“What a fine fellow you are!” Candy was very glad.

“Let’s go to the hall. Archie and the others are waiting for us”, Stear went to the exit.

“Archie? Where’s he?” Candy followed her cousin.

“Annie asked him to go with her. You know, she is mad about him.”

***

Archie was getting bored with Miss Brighton and the Legans. When Candy and Stear entered, he left Annie and went to his cousin.

“Hi, Candy! We were waiting for you.”

“Annie, remember, Candy has worked for us in the stable”, Neil reminded sarcastically.

“Yes-yes, we are in the same class now”, Annie replied.

“I am Candice. You can call me Candy”, Candy said. Annie shyly shook Candy’s hand.

“I am… Annie…” the girl lowered her eyes again.

“Annie… Annie… You are still the same little coward”, Candy thought with tenderness. “You have not changed at all.”

“Well”, Archie interfered. “Candy, this is a gift for you. From Aunt Elroy”, and he gave her a piece of a blue cloth. “A silk scarf. Isn’t it beautiful?”

“Is it for me?” Candy admired the present.

“You are also a member of the Audrey family. Aunt Elroy did not want to meet you, but I made a scandal and she sent this gift to you.”

“Thank you, Archie.”

“Don’t you want to try it on?” Archie put the scarf to Candy’s head. “It fits you, Candy.”

“Let me see”, Stear looked at his cousin.

Annie helplessly followed the events. Eliza, who also was not pleasant, came to her.

“Archie and Candy seem to be good friends”, Annie said quietly.

“Yes, he is crazy about her”, Eliza answered irritably.

“Today they behave decently”, Neil joined the conversation. “Usually they simply stick to each other”, he gave his sister a conspiratorial smile.

“We are going to our rooms”, Eliza announced.

“Bye”, said Neil.

“They are always the same”, Stear said. “And I hoped we would chat together.”

“Perhaps I’d better go too”, Annie said quietly. “I do not… feel very well”, and she turned to the door.

“Probably you are tired, the journey was long”, Stear guessed. “Archie, will you accompany Annie?”

“Go!” Candy and Stear pushed Archie towards the door.

“Annie, I will accompany you to your room!” Archie ran behind the girl.

***

“How are you?” Archie asked while going along the corridor with Annie.

“Better”, Annie could not stop thinking. “Archie loves Candy… Can it be true?…”

“Archie”, she called the guy. “Do not hurry, please, I can’t go so quickly.”

“I am sorry”, Archie replied. “Maybe you want to go to medical center and ask for a medicine?”

“No, it is not necessary…”

“You’d better lean against me, what if you fall?” Archie offered Annie his hand and the girl leaned against him.

“Archie, I love you so much”, Annie thought. “It is not true that you love Candy, is it?”

They reached the stairs.

“You are not fine, so you can lean against me”, Archie was explaining. “But the rules here are very strict, understand?”

“My mother told me that the girls are prepared to be good wives and mothers in this school.”

“Annie, than you should not come here at all”, Archie laughed. Annie reddened. “Annie, I want to ask you…”

“What about?”

“I want you to make friends with Candy. She is a very nice girl”, Archie did not notice that the smile has disappeared from Annie’s face. “Though she was brought up in Ponny’s House, she is not self-contained at all. She is always very kind and friendly. And Eliza simply hates her.” Archie did not notice that Annie was not leaning against his elbow any more too. “I would be glad if you and Candy became friends”, Archie finally looked at the girl, who stopped at the stairs. “Annie, what has happened?”

“I… I am very tired. Excuse me, Archie”, the girl ran upstairs leaving the guy alone. Tears were in her eyes. “Archie, I love you… I love you so much and you… You do not even notice it…” she entered her room and closed the door. She again remembered Archie’s words: “Annie, I would be very glad if you made friends with Candy. She is a very nice girl…” – “Candy, you are kind and friendly as always and everybody loves you, like always, certainly…”

***

Candy entered the classroom.

“Good morning, Candy”, Patty greeted her friend.

“Good morning, Patty”, Candy looked at the other desk. “Annie…” Annie was knitting something. “What is she knitting so persistently? I have never seen her like this.”

Eliza and her friends got interested in Annie’s knitting too.

“What are you knitting, Annie?” Louise asked.

“I know. It is probably for Archie”, Eliza hinted. “Is it a napkin?”

“Yes… Archie’s birthday is coming soon.”

“Archie’s? Are you speaking about Archie?”

“Yes. He is the same young man who is Candy’s friend”, Eliza continued her hints.

“What an awful girl Eliza is!” Candy thought angrily.

***

The evening was coming. Candy was going along the empty corridor. Annie was standing near a pillar.

“Candy!..”

“Annie!” Candy joyfully ran to her. “Annie, I wanted to talk with you…”

“Candy, do not take Archie from me, please…” Annie looked unhappy. “Please, Candy…”

“Annie, what do you mean? We are simply good friends. That’s all. Archie likes such kind girls as you are.”

“Candy…”

“You are still a weeper. Smile, Annie!”

***

Candy went to the park. A smoke was raising above “Ponny’s Hill”, where a sprawling tree was growing.

“Get out, Terruce Grandchester!” she shouted and a blue-eyed and dark-haired guy quickly rose from the grass.

“You frightened me. I thought you were Sister Gray. Want to smoke?”

“No, thanks”, the girl answered discontentedly. “And please, stop smoking on my “Ponny’s Hill”!” and she crushed Terry’s not finished cigarette.

“Eh!”

“This is for you”, she gave him a small metal thing.

“Harmonica?”

“Yes, it is my favorite music instrument.”

“Favorite instrument?” Terry asked again. “You simply want to pass me your kiss.”

“Terry!”

“I’ve joked. If you want, I’ll take it.”

“What you say, what you do, everything is the same terrible!”

Terry began playing the harmonica. Candy sat down nearby. Soon they heard the bell ringing.

“The next lesson starts”, Candy jumped up. “It’s time you were in class, Terry. Tell the truth, it is better to play the harmonica than to smoke, isn’t it? Bye!” Candy ran away.

“This girl, she pokes her nose into everything!” Terry followed her with his eyes. “Freckled Tarzan.”

“Candy!” somebody called the running girl. Gloomy Archie appeared from behind a tree.

“Archie… What has happened? What’s the matter, Archie?” Candy asked.

“I wonder why you are so kind with him?”

“What?”

“This snob…Supercilious aristocrat!”

“Kind?.. I simply…”

“Candy! Do not dare to be kind with him!”

“Why? Nobody understands him and he is not so bad as everybody thinks”, Candy objected.

“You don’t know him! Why do you defend him?”

“What do you mean? I don’t understand you. Why are so angry, Archie?”

Neither Candy nor Archie could not see the girl who was hiding herself with a box in her hands.

“I don’t want… I don’t want to lose you because of him!” Archie shouted. “Because of that parvenu… Candy, for a very long time I…”

“Stop!” Annie left her shelter. “Please, become silent!..”

“Annie, why are you here?” Candy asked.

“I… I simply wanted to give Archie his birthday present… But… but…” Annie threw the box to the ground and ran away crying. Candy followed her. Archie looked at the card in the present.

“Happy birthday, Archie! I made this with all my love. Annie”

The wind was stirring a napkin in Archie’s hand.

***

“Candice White Audrey! Annie Brighton!” the teacher was doing a roll-call. “Louise, Eliza, go and look for the girls.”

At that time Candy was trying to comfort crying Annie.

“Annie, stop crying, please.”

“You have promised… You have promised me, that you won’t take Archie from me”, Annie continued sobbing.

“Annie…”

“I know, I know Archie loves you. I know it!” Annie could not stop crying.

“Annie…” Candy noticed two familiar girls. “Eliza and Louise… The lesson has already started, so they are looking for us. Annie, we have to go to the classroom. We will talk later”, she touched Annie’s shoulder, but the girl sharply drew herself aside.

“Do not touch me! Everybody loves you, even at Ponny’s House all teachers always loved you more than me!”

“Annie, stop!” Despite of Candy’s attempts, Eliza and Louise have heard everything.

“So, you have also grown up in Ponny’s Orphanage?” Eliza came to them.

“In the same House, as Candy”, Louise added.

“Hmm… Does Archie know it?”

“How well you were hiding it!”

Annie could not bear it and ran away. Candy rushed behind her, but Eliza stopped her.

“Let her go. Candy, you knew everything and did not say any word?”

“What a touching friendship between girls from Ponny’s House.”

“Shut up!” Candy pushed them aside and followed her friend. “Annie… Poor Annie…” Candy remembered how her little friend always called her: “Candy, I am afraid… Let’s sleep together… Candy! Tom is offending me!.. Candy!.. Candy!..” – “Annie, I shall do for you everything I can”, Candy continued running though the weather was getting worse. “It is raining. If I do not find Annie… Annie!!!”

***

The abbess called all the nuns.

“Sister Gray, we still have not found Annie Brighton.”

“Continue. We must find her.”

***

“Annie!” shouted Candy. “Annie, where are you in such a rain?” Candy remembered Annie’s tears: “Everybody loves you, even at Ponny’s House all teachers always loved you more than me!” Candy pressed her forehead to a tree. “Annie, it is not true, that they loved me more, than you. They only asked me to take care of you, don’t you remember?” Miss Ponny asked her long ago: “Candy, please, take care of Annie. Help her.” – “Annie, where are you? Annie!!!” Candy shouted through the rain.

***

The boys were also caught by the rain.

“Can somebody be found on this huge territory?” Archie complained.

“You are right. And no glasses can help”, Stear wiped his forehead.

“I am sorry. Stear, you were involved into this because of me.”

“You should not blame yourself. You seem to break down yourself because of that Annie”, Stear put his hand onto his brother’s shoulder.

“It would be much better if I broke down and forgot everything on the Earth. I told Candy the truth; I have always loved Candy, but when I remember Annie, how she was there, on the “Ponny’s Hill”, and that she loves me… she loves me…” The present and the words “I have made it with all my love”… Archie could not forget them.

Candy ran to them.

“Candy!”

“Archie, I was looking for you. I have found Annie, but I… I can’t help her. I thought we understood each other, but it was not so.” Tears were in Candy’s eyes. “Archie, you must help her… Help her!”

“But where’s Annie?”

“She’s there, behind the “Ponny’s Hill”. Please, help her. You are the only who can help her, Archie…”

“Do not worry, Candy. I will bring Annie home. Return to the school”, Archie said and went away.

“I will go with you!” Candy shouted, but Stear stopped her.

“Candy, you should better stay here. He will bring Annie back. Let’s go.”

“Ok…”

***

Annie was hiding herself in a cave.

“I would like to vanish, as the drops of the rain when they reach the ground”, Annie was looking at the rain. “Why I only persuaded my parents and made all that way from America to England?.. Why I made such a secret of that I was brought up in Ponny’s House? All that was done because of Archie… But he…”

“Annie!” the girl heard Archie’s voice. “Annie, it is me. Where are you? Everybody is very worried about you”, Annie’s face brightened from these words. “What a place you have found! I can’t come to you, it is too narrow here.”

“Go away! I hate you!” Annie turned her head and began crying. “And I have hated you all the time!”

“I shall stand here till you get out. Listen, Annie, what a difference, where you were brought up? You must be strong. And you should not be afraid of people who judge the others only by their appearance.”

“Archie… You know everything… And… You came here…”

“Yes, and I won’t leave without you.”

“You came for me…”

“Certainly…”

Annie got out of the cave. Archie was waiting for her. Annie crying threw herself into his arms.

***

“Have you heard? Annie was brought up in Ponny’s Orphanage too”, the girls were discussing it everywhere. “She was hiding it really well.”

“Again Eliza”, Candy thought. “She told everybody.”

Candy remembered Eliza and she appeared with a friend.

“Good morning, Candy. Your friend has fever, do you know?”

“She is very weak, though she has grown up in Ponny’s Orphanage”, Louise added.

“Annie belongs to the Brighton family”, Candy replied.

“Yes, she was taken to a good family, but she is an orphan anyway.”

“You are simply a fool!” Candy shouted.

“Oh my God, how rude she is! All girls from Ponny’s House are so vulgar”, the girls laughed and left.

“Candy, do not pay attention to them”, Patty said. “And remember I always support you.”

“Patty”, Candy looked at her. “Annie… I will help you.”

“Candice, go to see Annie”, a nun said. “She is waiting for you.”

“Is waiting for me?” Candy asked joyfully. “Annie is waiting for me?! Annie…”

Archie left the medical center.

“Hello, Candy. Annie is sleeping now. She asked me to stay with her till she falls asleep.”

“Archie, Annie feels much better when you are with her. Archie, listen, take care of her”, Candy asked.

“Yes, sure. Well”, he said “good-bye” and left.

***

Annie was lying in bed.

“She seems to be much better”, Candy said to herself, looking at Annie. “She is quietly sleeping.” The girl noticed that Annie opened her eyes. “Annie…”

“Candy… I wanted to speak to you.”

“Annie, do not get up.”

“Forgive me for everything, please. I wanted to speak to you and could not…” Annie’s eyes filled with tears. “I was so silly while trying to hide the truth about Ponny’s House. Forgive me…”

“Do not worry, Annie.”

“Thank you, Candy. I am so sorry. I love you so much, Candy!” Annie embraced her friend. “I promise always to be cheerful since today...”

“Annie, you haven’t changed at all. My dear friend Annie…” Tears appeared in Candy’s eyes too.

 

And Candy remembered those days when she and Annie used to run together at the Ponny’s Hill.

 

The end of 36th series.