Note that life changing events happen to all people, like a new career, a breakup, wedding, a new child, a job loss, a relocation, a diagnose, an accident, etc. etc. Likewise, some of these happened to Candy too throughout the story, right? I’m sure they were all important events in her life, but in the prologue of Candy Candy Final Story (CCFS), Candy singled out one particular day in her life and emphasized the impact of her brief encounter with Albert in his youth, whom she had named Prince on the Hill. 🙂 The only evidence she had was his silver badge with a family insignia.
Some argue that Candy’s life had undergone a profound change the day she met her prince because he recognized the little girl years later and thus adopted her into his family. Yet, as some of you have pointed out, Candy could have said that her life had changed the day she had been adopted by a rich uncle (became the adopted daughter of William A. Ardlay), or the day she had been rescued from near-drowning by the waterfall (befriended with the vagabond Albert), but after suffering many ups and downs over the years, little Candy grew up and returned to where she had come from, the Pony’s Home, despite being the adopted daughter of the powerful William A. Ardlay. She could have lived like a princess, but she decided to work as a nurse in a small clinic located near the orphanage.
In a sense, she seemed to be back to square one, going back to where she had originated. 😐
Let’s put CCFS aside for now and take into account how the story of Candy Candy ends. Contrary to the anime version, Albert wore his usual outfit in the manga and simply repeated the line up on Pony’s Hill,
Although the wordings are slightly different (compared to the line shown in The day her life changed (Part 1)), the meanings are practically the same. 🙂 In the manga, Prince on the Hill left this line right before he vanished into thin air, and he used an extra word 顔, which means face. To paraphrase this, he said little one, your smiling face is prettier.
Do you know that the way Albert called her, おチビちゃん, is usually reserved for little kids or young children? This is fine when Candy was merely six years old, but it’s not very appropriate to call her おチビちゃん (Ochibichan) again now that she was close to seventeen. For adults, the term チビ (chibi) sometimes carries a slight nuance of contempt, meaning shorty or midget, etc. 😛
Nonetheless, in the manga, Candy understood why Albert repeated the exact same words. Like some of you, I also suppose Candy had never told anyone what her prince had said to her, not even Albert. Therefore, the fact that he said this to her again was his subtle hint that he was her Prince on the Hill, and as soon as she got her mind straight, she gleefully dashed into his outstretched arms with an ecstatic grin on her face.
Some people brush off or downgrade the significance of Candy’s rapturous reaction to Albert’s confession, saying that they had shared emotional embraces many times throughout the story already, so this was just another hug between them. What’s the big deal? 😕
However, if you have noticed, ever since Candy reunited with Albert in Lakewood, knowing that he was actually her legal guardian, she seemed to register the truth with mixed emotions, and tears continuously rolled down her cheeks. Regardless, she didn’t run into his arms as she had always done in the past. It isn’t clear how much time had elapsed between the discovery of his real identity and the day she left Chicago for Pony’s Home, but they had not hugged each other at all, as though something had changed between them.
Some insist that Albert being Prince on the Hill made not much a difference to his relationship with Candy. After this revelation, Albert would remain her friend, big brother and adoptive father. However, in my opinion, while her actions didn’t go beyond platonic, her feelings for him were definitely more than platonic by then. Why?
Don’t you think her reactions would have been entirely different if her prince was a random handsome stranger in his twenties? Would she run into his outstretched arms? 🙄
Very unlikely, right? 😀
After all, she was a young lady already, not a child. 😉
Or even worse, if her prince turned out to be a man she knew but disliked 🙁 , would she have been this elated to have reunited with him at long last? 😕
In either case, she would possibly be civil with the man whom she was unfamiliar with, no matter how handsome he was, and she would simply return the badge to him. That was probably it between them, and I don’t think she would do anything else with him after that. 😉
However, her prince was Albert, the man who had always managed to comfort her whenever someone dear to her heart had left her, including Annie’s departure with her new parents, Anthony’s death and Candy’s breakup with Terry.
The only time Albert hadn’t been there for Candy was when he had walked away from her life and remained hidden from her for months. During his absence, she had missed him terribly, even blindly gone to Rockstown to search for him.
In CCFS, Candy realized she had developed some special feelings for Albert by then, that she somehow knew that he wasn’t merely a family to her (for details, please read Argh, he’s driving me crazy …). Candy might not be fully aware of the depth of her feelings yet, but the fact that she gladly and readily accepted him as her prince, the boy she had adored since her childhood, speaks volumes. 🙂 😉
Yet, some people claim that Mizuki had changed her mind when writing CCFS, that ultimately the most important man to Candy was Terry, not Albert, and that Candy would end up marrying Terry. 🙄 However, one reader had raised a very good point to counter that. If Mizuki had changed her mind, the author could have begun CCFS around the time Candy left for London with George instead 😮 , or at least Mizuki could have indicated that the day Candy’s life changed significantly was the day she met Terry while crossing the Atlantic Ocean. 🙄
But no, that’s not the case. Unlike the manga, the story of CCFS ends before Albert’s important confession. The epilogue begins by revealing the identity of that mysterious boy, as though Mizuki answered the question in the first two chapters of CCFS. He was no other man than Candy’s legal guardian, Albert. The way he disclosed his secret was to ask Candy to return his badge, and that was how Candy discovered who he really was. She then shed tears of happiness, non-stop, and she wrote a letter to him after the shock. That is the first letter in the epilogue, which is followed by their heartfelt correspondence between each other.
Remember an epilogue can serve as a teaser to a sequel after the story ends? Can’t you see the structure of CCFS by now? The prologue presents a question and the epilogue provides the answer. In other words, CCFS is a story about why or how Candy’s life had changed after her brief encounter with a mysterious Scottish boy, who had been giving her his unflagging support all these years without her knowing it until the time was ripe.
Therefore, many of us have reasons to believe Candy’s future began with her Prince on the Hill. 😀
I will continue, so please stay tuned for Part 3.