Chapter Two Thousand Three Hundred Eight
24th July 1974
“I don’t see what the big deal is” Anna said, her voice full of insolence and Nancy really wanted to slap her. Tilo’s mother was listening in on the conversation because she was visiting much to Nancy’s annoyance.
“Do you understand how institutions that pride themselves on academic excellence maintain that excellence?” Nancy asked, “They do it by getting rid of those who let their grades slip.”
“Then I will just go to a different school like Gretchen did” Anna replied, completely indifferent to what Nancy had just said.
The Tzschocha School had given Nancy an earful about how about Anna having become an indifferent student over the course of the last school year and how she frequently mistreated her fellow students. They had told her that if Anna didn’t return with better attitude in September, then she would be well advised attend school elsewhere.
This came at a time when Marie Cecilie, or Rea as her family called her, had decided to shake things up. For years, much of the public had assumed that she was gay while Nancy was aware of the minor detail that Rea never had been gay. Now she was about to clarify the truth about her existence and make some arrangements that would leave the Government of Denmark fuming. Having Anna’s problems added on top of that was the last thing that Nancy needed at this moment.
“It is easy to be lazy and careless, at first” Nancy said looking Anna right in the eye. “But it seems like every time I did that, I paid a price for it until I learned better.”
“What? Missed an appointment at a hair salon?” Anna said with a sneer. Nancy knew that this was the side of her daughter that Tzschocha saw as a huge problem. Once again, she wanted to slap Anna but knew that would solve nothing. That was when Helga saved her the trouble. Nancy heard the sound of the blow that sent Anna sprawling and a few seconds later she stood back up, a red mark across her cheek and a shocked look on her face.
“Oma!” Anna exclaimed.
“Don’t you Oma me” Helga said, “Your mother has bent over backwards to persuade you to stop being such a stupid little bitch. Tell her about the times you were careless Nancy, what the consequences were. All three of them.”
Nancy had no clue as to how Helga had figured out what she had been referring to so quickly.
“It was more than just three times” Nancy said, “But those were the big ones.”
“What are you even talking about?” Anna asked, hurt, and bewildered by this turn of events.
“Every time I left things to chance, I lost” Nancy said, “And a few of those times, I ended up with a baby to care for as a result.”
“You are saying that I was a mistake?” Anna asked, totally aghast that Nancy would say such a thing.
“What I said about you being a stupid bitch” Helga said, “You, your brother and sister were never mistakes. Though there are times when you seem hellbent on making yourself into one. Constantly being a pain in the ass, I would have thrown you out on your ear for far less than you mother has put up with.”
Anna was completely appalled hearing the sharp tone that her grandmother was using. All the times that she had deliberately shoved her thumb into the eye of the adults in her life it must have never occurred to her that they had opinions of their own about her that were decidedly not complimentary.
This was not what Tatianna had in mind when she had gotten involved with the BND. The summers spent in Ireland had been enjoyable and the efforts to speak with the appropriate accent had been a challenge. Now though, things were not as simple, and she found herself waiting tables in an Irish themed restaurant knowing that her family was traveling to Montreal at that very moment to visit her grandparents. The absurdity of her situation wasn’t lost on her as she found herself talking to tourists whose knowledge of Irish food and culture was limited to say the least. The owner of the place made a point of hiring young women from Ireland, mostly those wanting just to take a look around in America, make some money and then go home. It was perfect for Tatiana’s purposes in familiarizing herself with Boston. Though as she was finding out, it was an actual job and there were very real expectations that she would do it.
Needing to take a quick break, Tatiana entered the restroom and locked the door. Splashing water from the sink onto her face, she looked at herself in the mirror. “Your name is Anne Morgan, and you are a University student in Belfast when you are not doing this” She whispered to herself. There had been a few times when she had wanted to go off on a particularly boorish customer, but she had already figured out that when she got angry, she reverted right back into being herself. It was something that would be disastrous here because the other people who worked here would instantly know she wasn’t who she said she was.
Opening the door, Tatiana forced herself to smile as she faced another group sitting around a table as they puzzled over the menu. In her preparations for this she had heard a comedian once joke that the Irish didn’t do cuisine or culture, they did penance. She was being given a full understanding as to what exactly that meant.