Apr 23 2014

Ambiguous Letter

Ever heard of this quote? “Some people put walls up, not to keep people out, but to see who cares enough to knock them down.” -Unknown

That was Terry. He had built tall walls around himself, acting ill-mannered or skeptical towards people around him (to his parents, schoolmates or even co-workers). Throughout the manga, he had remained insecure, difficult and unwilling to be vulnerable. However, his walls had been gradually knocked down by Candy, and she had actually seen the softer side of Terry. That explains why she was special to him. She truly cared about him, and she had tried to help him to a point that she had behaved like Sister Gray to Terry.Candy Terry Secret Found

Unfortunately, Terry had made a rushed decision and left London in such a hurry that essentially driven him and Candy apart. If he had stayed in London a bit longer and talked with Candy before leaving, their relationship might have a better chance to develop. In addition, Terry could have done more by keeping in touch with Candy, like writing letters to her, but for unknown reason he didn’t. Likewise, Candy didn’t have to leave London as a stowaway. First, she had no idea where Terry was going, and secondly, she didn’t really know what she wanted to do in her life at that point. She left for America without consulting with George or her guardian at all. It was by chance that she somehow found out that she wanted to be a nurse to help the sick and needy.

The other woman whom Terry had treated with tenderness was Susanna. After all, she had taken his place and ended up losing a limb and her own career. Without her sacrificial act, Terry would have lost his life or his career. Therefore, he felt responsible to take care of Susanna, and as much as he had wanted Candy, he had chosen Susanna over Candy.

Candy was fully aware of Terry’s dilemma, and after some struggling, she had no choice but to let him go. Candy used to dislike Susanna, knowing that Susanna had lied to her back in Chicago, but because of what had happened to Susanna, Candy put up a smiley face and even encouraged Susanna to live well. According to Candy Candy Final Story (CCFS), soon after Candy had left the hospital in a haste, Terry had promised Susanna that he would be by her side, now and forever, which means that Terry had resolved to give up Candy for good.

That was an abrupt end to Candy’s relationship to Terry. Believe me, I fully sympathized with these three characters, especially Susanna. I know many Candy Candy fans hate Susanna, but I think she deserved a better ending. Honestly, I don’t understand why Mizuki had to kill Susanna in CCFS (due to tremendous pressure from Terry’s fans? 😉 ). To me, it was like Terry had sacrificed his happiness for nothing in the end. Terry had kept his promise to stay by Susanna’s side till her death, but they had remained engaged, not married. But why? How many years had passed since his breakup with Candy? Had he not forgotten Candy or what? Or because Susanna had become too ill?

At any rate, Terry’s brief letter to Candy in CCFS is controversial. As I mentioned before, a reader has pointed out to me that the letters in CCFS are not necessarily in chronological order. Mizuki put his letter right after Susanna’s obituary to make it ambiguous or even misleading. Terry said he hadn’t changed at all after one year and a half. But since when? Since their breakup or since Susanna’s death?

Come to think of it, even if he claimed that he hadn’t changed, it seemed implausible. After all, his career had gone through some ups and downs since the breakup, and years or months of helping Susanna to fight her illness hadn’t changed him? Doesn’t that make him a bit inhuman?

If the letter was sent after Susanna’s death, did Candy actually receive this letter from Terry? If so, how did Candy react?

Moreover, it’s unclear if Candy wrote to Terry to send him her condolences after reading Susanna’s obituary. Candy should be able to contact Terry at Stratford Theatre, but did she do it?

Nobody knows it for sure except for Mizuki I suppose? 😛

However, I’m inclined to believe Candy hadn’t contacted Terry at all since their breakup. Regardless of when exactly Terry sent this letter, it’s undeniable that he didn’t know how to contact her. He wrote “I’m not sure if this letter will reach you”, which implies that he wasn’t sure if she had moved elsewhere or not. They used to correspond to each other using their home addresses, right (shown in the manga)?

Last but not the least, in the CCFS epilogue, which by definition often serves to give the readers a glimpse of the future of the main characters, Candy wrote to Anthony in her mind. After introducing his uncle, Albert, to Anthony in detail, telling Anthony that Albert was her Prince on the Hill, she talked about Terry (taken from spoilers):

… I was very much attracted to someone who was like you in London.
But it was just for a brief moment that I thought he was like you and maybe he was the diametric opposite of you.
I have learnt that there were different types of love through this person.
And that there was something we could never restore.
We can’t see someone again who has died — I couldn’t accept such a simple thing for the life of me …
And — now …
I have learnt there is a fate makes it impossible to see someone although the person is still alive…

Note that Terry’s name wasn’t explicitly mentioned at all, as if Candy had intentionally avoided it, which makes me wonder why.

What a contrast the way Candy described Albert and Terry in this last letter in the epilogue! So what do you think it suggests? 🙂

Picture downloaded from William Albert Andrew (el príncipe de la colina)



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    • Quevivacandy on January 22, 2015 at 5:27 pm

    Finally, here I go!!! lol…. you drove me crazy looking for this post until I saw the ‘search’ button… lol…

    let’s start with my timeline… :p

    1914 – they broke up (according to manga)
    1918 or 1919??? – POTH confession
    1919 – 1920??? – time while they has written to each other

    Well, I just did that just to place the last letter from Candy to Albert in the epilogue.

    1. If the letter was written late summer 1918 – 4 years had elapsed since they broke up.
    2. If the letter was written next spring (1919) – more than 4 years
    3. if the confession took place until 1919, lets say 5 years or more
    4 if the confession took place until 1920, SIX years or more

    I keep mention that letter because it talks about Albert returning her diary. Until then, we knew he had it. Now, in the unsent letter to Terry, Candy talks about that diary, that Albert knows everything what is in it, and by the time she wrote the unsent letter, Sussana was still alive. (she wrote him to be happy at her side, Sussana’s) So we can think that letter was written maybe 4-6 years LATER or maybe more, after their broke up. Now, Im lost again…lol… let me remember why I wrote this… oh yes…. In all that time, it’s impossible that Candy wouldn’t overcome about Terry, specially if she had lived with Albert and then, found out he was her POTH. By that time, she followed with her life and found out she fell for Albert and they were already in a relationship. That’s my guess.

    I think she was pretty sure she will not have a chance with Terry so eventually she got over him and fell for Albert. But, the opposite happened to him. He kept a hope that maybe some day they would be together. If he let Candy go and chose Susanna over her and even asked her to be happy, I don’t think he had tried to contact her or sent her a note while Susanna was still alive, I guess he might did it after she passed away and the reason he wasn’t sure Candy will get the note, is how long time had elapsed since their break-up. I don’t think he sent the note to Pony’s Home but the Magnolia apartment, anyway, that is only my guess.

    But to be honest, everything is possible… lol…

    As always, a great post.

      • Ms Puddle on January 22, 2015 at 6:01 pm

      My dear friend, the search button helps me a lot too! But next time I’ll try to give you a link too… I should have done that. 😛

      About the unsent letter, I believe Candy wrote that soon after she moved back to Pony’s Home (not long after she had discovered that Albert was Uncle William). That’s why she said Albert was still veiled in mystery, and that’s also why she brought up the diary. She just realized that Albert was the one who had read her diary, all her feelings for Terry. Perhaps she had mixed feelings about this now that she had developed some special feelings for Albert.

      About Terry’s letter, nobody knows for sure except Mizuki. Most Terry fans believe it was sent after Susanna’s death (like what you said), but I think it can be argued either way. 😉

        • Quevivacandy on January 22, 2015 at 10:03 pm

        it’s ok, now I know where the ‘search button’ is… lol…

        mmm well, I agree the Candy wrote the unsent letter when she was already at Pony’s Home, but keep believing it also was after she visited Lakewood with Albert.

        You are right about Candy but also she says in the same letter that neither she or Albert could talk the diary. I don’t know if I’m wrong but I sense that she realized Albert had the diary until he returned it to her. Yes, she already knew his true identity but I guess she also was dealing with her inner feelings that forgot completely about the diary, so when she saw it, she was a little shocked. what do you think?

        Remember the group I told you? Over there they also believe Terry’s note (’cause it was so short to call it a letter… lol..) was sent after Susanna’s death and also that Candy got it but she just ignore it because she was already with Albert. But like you said, only Mizuki knows what happened…sigh…

          • Ms Puddle on January 22, 2015 at 10:28 pm

          My dear QuevivaCandy, if you read the first paragraph of Candy’s unsent letter to Terry, it seems to me that she still had some remnant feelings for Terry. She didn’t love him anymore, and as you said, she wrote this letter to say ‘goodbye’.

          Also, she wrote this letter after getting the invitation from Terry’s mother to see ‘Hamlet’ in autumn. I believe Stratford theater hired him again soon after he returned to Broadway. By the time Candy wrote this letter, Terry had tremendous success already.

          Note that near the end of this letter, Candy talked about Terry’s return and Susanna’s love and support, right? So I believe his return to Broadway had happened not too long ago. Otherwise, why did Candy bring this up? You see what I mean? 😉

            • Quevivacandy on January 23, 2015 at 5:44 am

            I agree with you my friend but I took the first paragraph as her just recalling their break up. Sometimes you still have fond memories about some person in your life but that doesn’t mean that you are still in love with him. you see what I mean?

            Yes, the letter was written after she read about his success in the newspaper, I mean ‘Hamlet’ but also in the letter she says ‘a long run after a long run’ and then says ‘ Terrus’s “Hamlet” “is also going to be performed in England!’. To say that, the war is already over, London must be a little bit recovered with a theater for their performance, they wouldn’t be talking about going to London if the WWI is not over yet, don’t you think? Remember once we talked about how long time elapsed in ‘long run after a long run’?

            Anyway, The diary thing is still on my mind. But maybe you’re right, just find out a line in the epilogue letter… ‘I also have been concerning about the diary.’ Like she had thought about it before but then why to say in the unsent letter, ‘Albert-san, I wonder how he reacted when he read that diary. Neither of us can mention about it even now …’ that last line indicates me that A&C already have talked about the diary by then and that happened after their visit to Lakewood.

            Other thing, is that the letters doesn’t have to be in chronological order… sigh… CCFS is still driving me crazy.

            Well, anyway, I would set the unsent letter until 1919, what I’m planning to do… hehehe… you will see.. 😉

    • Reeka on April 23, 2014 at 7:44 pm

    Ms puddle, i am warning you that my comment is sure very very long bcos i’ve been waiting for this post!. Just go grab some snacks first 🙂 LOL

    like i said in your fb page, i love your expression for terry. THAT’S TERRY! we love him, but somehow we can’t help feeling sorry for him. This character is very complex indeed.

    let’s talk about their relationship first. Like C&AW’s comment above, i too found that their relationship didn’t have a strong foundation. is it really love? or just a big wonderful illusion? how if terry had never forced to kissed her, would her feeling toward him as strong be as it was? you know how we girls felt about a kiss on lips, especially the first one. Julia Roberts in pretty woman once said that she avoided being kissed with her clients because kissing on lips is far more intimate than an intercourse. It’s involved feelings.

    It’s undeniable that they had was a very beautiful memory in their short time in st paul ( i supposed it’s less than a year?). They were physically attracted to each other. Just like how an adolescence’s love normally would have to be. But did they share the very basic foundation of a love that would help them survive the ups and downs of life/marriage? they obviously had a poor open communication. When they met, they’ kept bantering and teasing each other.They talked only about their gold old days in st paul, about their daily life as a nurse and an actor. But they didn’t care to share their burdens, their anguish, their difficulties.

    Terry threatened her when she found out about eleanor. Okay, some would say,… hey he’s still a teenager. Then, how about susana’s matter? i assumed they were young adults at that time ( and we’re talking about 1910s-1920s era). Don’t you think he had supposed to share his burden to candy? Instead, he selfishly gave candy one way ticket and made her dream and have high hopes. okay, some would say, hey…terry loved her so much and indeed he thought to ask her to live together in NY. Then i asked … what the hell he was doing when candy asked him to stay with susana? didn’t he think their love big enough to be fought for? And speaking about his hospitality when candy had just arrived in NY, even candy knew that his mind was in somewhere else. And what is it to rush to susana’s hospital during the play? Had he forgotten that candy was supposed to be his important guess ( he didn’t know she left the theatre, right?) The one made my blood boil was why he acted like he didn’t care of candy when he saw her on rooftop. That scene was killing me!

    I think i’ve told you before, ms puddle, … i really don’t understand terry’s attitude toward susanna even before the accident. He should’ve been tough to her since that time he knew susana got candy’s letter and she admitted that she shooed candy away in chicago hotel. If i were in terry’s position, i would have been really upset and realised that i had to be extra vigilant to susanna’s feeling. Gosh. Really, during those time i first read the manga, i really wanted candy ended up with terry … but the whole scenes in volume 7 made me disappointed on terry so much. That is why i also don’t quite understand with terry’s fans. Why they tolerate his behaviour toward our heroine?

    And about his ambiguous letter in CCFS.

    For me, no matter when the letter was written, the conclusion would be the same. Even if it’s written 1.5 year after their break-up, … it means it took some time not far away after candy& albert’s correspondence. We know from C&A letters, that candy was already happy. She said to albert ” my happiness lies in here, in now”. So i think the letter was not so important anymore. I even think that terry’s letter came after candy’s unsent letter to him. Why terry said he’s not sure the letter would reach her? he knew ( i think everyone might know) the address of Ardley’s mansion/coorporate. remember that except albert and elroy, candy is the only one with ardley surname. So someone in Ardley premises must know she’s important. Except … my speculation was ^^ terry had read in papers that candy was married and moved to another city/country ( with albert, and moved to london, probably? ^^). This of course with assumption that the letter came 1.5 years after susana’s death.

    it’s funny that some people said that candy didn’t need to reply terry’s letter because she flew to him right after she knew susana’s death, or after she received the letter. LOL. They surely don’t know her characters very well. If that kind of wild imagination was acceptable, why do they say that we, albert fan, was imagining things in CCFS? 😀

    For me, the fact that mizuki made susana die was a clear closure for me that she indeed tried to balance the clues in CCFS. I found that if mizuki really meant to reunite candy and terry, she would have made more honourable plot. Why would wait susana’s death? It was too pathetic for candy. Doesn’t she have a lot of reasons to be chased after and married by someone, without being the second option?

    And candy’s letter to anthony, .. it’s also a clear ending for the train of letters she randomly re-read that day in CCFS. In the first part of letter, she talked about albert. about going back to lakewood, about albert was uncle william and prince of the hill, about rosemary and vincent brown. the she talked about the one who shouldn’t be named ( ahahahha), about even when the person was still alive, but fate made them couldn’t meet again. and finally she said she’s now happy and optimistic about the future.

    About the way candy addressed terry in letter for anthony, it might be because anthony didn’t have any relationship with terry so it needs no name. But it might be because candy, in some point, get used to not mention terry’s name anymore. The same attitude she showed about her diary that she gave back to albert. It’s like she tried to keep it away for someone’s sake. 🙂

    so yes, even if i’m trying hard to be fair, to be open minded and wanted to believe that anohito was terry … i can not! The clues weren’t there.

    p.s. btw ms puddle, do you mind suggest me where i can read the english CCFS? i’ve only got it from Begui’s blog and FF amor aeternus. thanks!

      • Ms Puddle on April 23, 2014 at 8:26 pm

      It’s very long indeed, dear Reeka!! I’ll need to organize my thoughts and see how I can address your points. Don’t want to miss any one of them, and I still owe another reader a post I have promised a while ago! Please be patient, and I’d like to discuss more with you. <^_^

        • Reeka on May 1, 2014 at 8:22 am

        Hi there,
        just a quick comment before i forget it.

        Just now, i’ve re-read again this ambiguous letter of terry’s, and suddenly i’ve been more certain than before that this letter was sent 1.5 years after the break-up. The way he said ” candy … how are you? it’s been a year. (…) ”

        I don’t know, but i feel that terry must have mentioned about susana’s death in that letter if it was a year after “his freedom”. How could terry be so sure that candy knew about the news? As if she would understand it without his saying it. Since it’s been too long since their last contact ( 5-10 years?) … i think i doubt it.

        i’d like to hear your opinion. 🙂

        1. Reeka, you know, great minds think alike! Lol… Just the simple fact that he didn’t mention what ‘it’ was seems to be telling us that Terry expected Candy to understand what he had alluded to (i.e. their breakup).

          On the other hand, I’d rather this was sent at that time than after Susanna’s death. To me, it only made him a bit too ‘cold-hearted’ not to have changed after all this time (though unsure how long) of fighting her illness with her. He might not be fully over ‘his highschool sweetheart’, but he couldn’t possibly claim that he had not changed. It’s just too vague… almost like Mizuki wanted the readers to ‘fill in the blank’, lol. 😛

            • Reeka on May 1, 2014 at 10:16 am

            see … see … gosh! this mizuki really likes to keep my mind busy solving the puzzle. LOL. and again, my husband said “you’re obsessed!”

            in my wild imagination, then it all made sense if it took place 1.5 years after breakup. It matched candy’s letter to miss baker. “i want to see it …. but i don’t want … (…)”. She felt like the time was not right, it’s too sensitive for them to meet again. As she probably was very aware (because of the letter) that terry hadn’t changed at all. She might be in a fresh yet still fragile relationship with albert. They’re still building their new stage.

            The letter probably was sent to Magnolia. And bcos candy once sent ( and received) letter from gloria bandog, it made sense that candy then got terry’s letter from miss bandog. **come to think of it, why mizuki made letters between candy and miss bandog??**

            i believe susana’s death was around 5-10 years after NY separation. I firmly believe, for terry, he always loves candy. He hardly opened his heart for anyone. But like you, i also think that with times, he finally could get along with susana quite well, probably as best friends. After all, susana in mizuki’s description was not an evil bitch like those in terry-candy fanfics. LOL.

            1. Yeah… We’re obsessed, but we’re not alone, lol!!

              Some people even said Candy hadn’t received that letter from Terry… Don’t understand why though… Possibly because it didn’t say how she reacted to it?

              I do agree that she returned the ticket to Miss Baker because there was something going on between Albert and her 😉

              About Susanna, many Terry fics portrayed her so evil that they were way off character. I don’t see her like that at all. Her suicidal attempt wasn’t meant as a weapon to drive a wedge between Terry and Candy. If so, Susanna wouldn’t have picked that time (première) when both Terry and Candy would not possibly be around.

  1. Then when they met again, in NY, Terry was too busy worrying about Susana than to talk about his ‘special’ feelings with Candy. I will never understand why Candy took this heartbreak seriously when they never had a deep relationship from the beginning.

      • Ms Puddle on April 23, 2014 at 6:33 pm

      Exactly… Probably because she had very high hopes when she went to New York? They both had feelings for each other but their relationship had hardly begun

  1. […] other of their long history since their youth? 😉 Also, you might argue that in Terry’s ambiguous letter to Candy, he did write “Candy”, but that was after the breakup, so he was probably […]

  2. […] indeed cared about Susanna’s feelings (Terry had chosen Susanna over Candy after all). See Ambiguous Letter for what I have said earlier if you […]

  3. […] thank you for leaving long comments to my earlier posts, Matching Pajamas and Ambiguous Letter, such that I have an excuse to write a new series. It has taken me a while to start because […]

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