In Candy Candy Final Story (CCFS), in one of Albert’s letters to Candy, he recalled his runaway incident, also his first encounter with little Candy on Pony’s Hill. He mentioned that being seventeen, he still had had no freedom. Not only that, many things had been done in his name without his knowledge, etc.
So does that mean Albert was already seventeen when he met Candy, a six-year-old little girl? Possibly.
Unfortunately, this contradicts the original Candy Candy manga, including its novel adaptation, the old Candy Candy novel, published by Mizuki a few years after the manga had finished.
First of all, in the old Candy Candy novel, Albert stated that Candy’s prince was as young as Anthony, and he jokingly said that he didn’t want to spoil her prince’s image. Besides, both Albert and Candy knew that Prince on the Hill looked very much like Anthony, who was only 15 years old when Candy met him at the Rose Gate. She was two years younger than Anthony, and she had almost mistaken Anthony for her prince. Naturally, she had special feelings for Anthony, and their friendship soon evolved into a puppy love.
Years later, when Candy and Albert lived together pretending to be brother and sister, she didn’t recognize her prince even though she saw Albert day after day for slightly more than a year. That implies that Albert and Anthony didn’t look too much alike, or at least their resemblance didn’t make Candy suspicious. After all, Albert was a grown up man in his twenties.
However, most teenage boys should enter adolescence around thirteen, fourteen or even younger. On average, they should have stopped their physical growth around sixteen. Even if not, the growth rate should have slowed down significantly after that.
In other words, at 17, Albert should have nearly reached his adult height and body build by the time he appeared on Pony’s Hill wearing kilt, which means that Prince on the Hill should not look very different from Albert.
Yet, according to the ending in the manga, Candy’s prince looked more childish and much younger than Albert in her memory, and only when he mentioned his famous quote “You look prettier when you smile than when you cry” that Candy could see her prince in Albert.
Don’t get me wrong though. It doesn’t bother me at all even if Albert was indeed 11 years older than Candy. Please note that I am just pointing out that this possible new age gap in CCFS would make the original story plot disputable. The age difference in the manga and the old novel (he was about eight to nine years older than her) actually makes more sense to me.
Interestingly, at least a handful of well known classic novels have married couples with wide age gaps. Here, the approximate age differences of some of them are listed:
- Jane Eyre: Jane Eyre and Mr. Rochester (20 years)
- Little Women: Jo March and Professor Bhaer (at least 20 years)
- Daddy Long Legs: Judy Abbott and Master Jervie (14 years)
- Sense and Sensibility: Marianne and Colonel Brandon (18 years)
- Pride and Prejudice: Lizzy Bennet and Mr. Darcy (8 years)
What about some famous couples in Hollywood, like Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas?
In addition, while writing this post, I came across two articles that discussed age gap in couples. In the first one, it talked about one advantage of couples being fifteen years apart! In the second one it mentioned women preferred men being a few years older.
In any case, to me, the age gap is not a big deal as long as the husband and wife love each other and they can communicate well. In CCFS, in one of Candy’s recollections, Candy said (from spoilers):
“… Albert and I had promised to share everything with each other.
Both painful things and delightful things…
It was him who made this suggestion.
I could tell him about everything.
About Terry, even about Susanna… Everything which I couldn’t tell even Annie. I had thought Albert would also feel he could share everything with me…”
I think even Terry cannot measure up to Albert! Throughout the manga Candy had not told Terry much about her past (except about Anthony which Terry had found out when Candy had been talking in her dream), but Candy had told Albert a lot about herself, not just happy things. Albert had always been the one Candy could cry on. As I have mentioned in one of my previous posts (see the link below), Candy acknowledged that Albert could give her a marvelous feeling of security.
A good example can be found in CCFS. When Albert paid Candy a surprise visit at Pony’s Home and even took her to Lakewood with him, she wanted to go to the forest where Anthony had had his horse accident. I gather it was her first time revisiting that place, and with Albert she had the courage to return. After sharing her pain with Albert that day, Candy claimed that she felt as though she had been given a new life. Need I say more?
Those who have been following me on my blog know that I have described that scene from CCFS in my short story “The Diary”, and I have also attempted to capture in a drawing the moment Albert pulled Candy into his arms when she blamed herself for Anthony’s accident and started crying.
Here I present a colored version of that drawing. While coloring, I have modified the original illustration in various spots (their eyes in particular). Note that this is the first time I tried using a real background image (I took this picture in a park in my neighborhood).
I’m still new to drawing/coloring in general. Therefore, constructive feedback and suggestions are more than welcome because I might have made some obvious mistakes. As usual, please feel free to share my post (but not the image itself). Thank you in advance!
Last but not the least, I’ll take a short break from blogging because I want to focus in writing my next chapter for my long story, “Love Never Fails”. I got it started, and hopefully I will be able to publish by early August. Thank you for your patience and understanding!