The first time Giacomo Casanova felt Fanny Price weep into his arms was when he first met her and she recalled her troublesome days at Mansfield Park. He held her close as she told the many times she felt unimportant.
She had run away to London, coincidentally where he was staying. They met at a pub, and what was most endearing to Giac was that despite being there, she didn’t drink.
Giac very well saved her that night. While in the pub, they overheard some Londoners shame the Irish for their latest revolution due to Britain’s slow response to their potato famine. Fanny tried to reason with them, saying that they should put themselves in the Irish people’s shoes. She would have gotten a smack had Giac not grabbed her hand and told her to run.
They laughed as they trotted through the streets under the midnight London moon. And as soon as they were far enough away they sat down on the steps of an old building and got to talking.
He told her all about Venice, and why he was living in exile. But he refrained from bringing up Henriette too much, normally he would not mind telling his tale in full, but with Fanny, Giacomo had no desire to think of Henriette. That was when he knew there was something special about her, and he ached to know more about her.
She tried her best not to burst into tears as she remembered her horrid days at Mansfield Park. Always feeling more like a servant than a resident. She shivered as she remembered each time she was called useless or gormless, and it made his heart clench that anyone would be so cruel and especially to her.
He stroked her hair and told her not to worry. She would never ever have to feel that way again.
“Really?” She asked.
“Really.” He confirmed, swiping at her tear stained cheeks.
And with a matching grin, they agreed to see one another again as soon as possible.
And again. And again. And again. And again.
The second time Giacomo Casanova felt Fanny Price weep in his arms was when he told her he loved her.
They had been seeing one another quite regularly for months. Per Fanny’s request and Giac’s inability to deny her anything, they had taken things slow. Only getting as forward as kisses to one another’s cheek after a month.
But after five or six, Giac could no longer hide his feelings.
Normally, he was a leaper. Jumping on every whim of faith in the hopes that this woman would be the right one, no matter how sudden. He found that by taking things slow, and really getting to know one another, it became quite clear what his past mistakes were.
She was changing him.
For the better.
It was after a sunset stroll in the park, their arms interlocked. Giac couldn’t get over the joyful expression on her face as she listened to the birds sing and just how gorgeous she looked with the sun casting rays upon her face and golden hair. For a brief moment he wondered if he had somehow died and she was an undeserved reward.
However when he felt her lips at his cheek and turned and saw her shy grin and blush he knew that it was all too real, and even too much to bear. He ceased their stroll and turned to face her, toying with her fingers as he ducked his head down.
“Giacomo?” She whispered.
“Fanny, I love you.” He murmured to his shoes.
He picked his head up, and met her watery eyes with a sigh. His face softened and he half smiled. “Fanny Price, I love you. More than I ever thought possible to love anyone.”
“B-but, you…” And then her eyes fully filled and tears spilled over as she rapidly wrapped her arms around his torso and buried her nose in in his chest. She mumbled something that he didn’t understand and with a kiss to the top of her head he asked her to repeat herself. “I said,” she sniffed, “I love you too. And I have for months. I never dreamed, that you….and I and, and—“
He silenced her with a firm press of his lips to her own and brought his hands to her cheeks. His heart fluttering when her hands covered his. In that moment, they could not care less about who would see them, they simply held each other tight, kissed ravenously and relished in the belief that this, was the beginning of the rest of their lives.
The third time Giacomo Casanova felt Fanny Price weep in his arms, was the night of their wedding; and, the first time they made love.
She looked so stunning in her simple gown, she looked like an angel.
Immediately after kissing her at the altar he wanted nothing more than to ravish her entirely, which he did.
He sat beside her on their bed, husband and wife. He put both hands on her waist and ever so gently, pressed his lips to hers. What a kiss it was, Fanny grew bolder each passing minute and soon her hands were running through his hair and her tongue danced with his.
“Oh, gosh. Giac.” She whispered into his mouth.
“I know. I know, Fanny. Hold on tight.”
Hearts pounding, teeth clashing and sweat tingling, they explored one another in all the ways they had ached for. Giac learned just what made her purr and blush and Fanny learned how to make him gasp in pleasure.
Finally, they joined. Giac, never having been with an untouched woman before may have underestimated his strength and agility. Unbeknownst to him, each thrust of his body within her sent a tingle down her spine and had her moaning for more.
“I love you.” She whispered, once her breathing had calmed, and some water formed in her eyes.
He held her tightly to him, not caring that his bare shoulder was damp with her tears.
“Did I hurt you, Fanny?” Giac whispered.
She shook her head, “Just a bit at first.” He tightened his hold on her and held his breath. “But no…no, Giac. Giacomo, that was…that was incredible.”
“You are incredible, Fanny.”
“Because you make me feel that way.”
“But that’s only because you are.”
“Are we bantering?”
“Do you want to?”
“I want to—” Fanny bit her lip and blushed and averted her gaze.
Giac peered down at her. “Tooooo, what?” He moved some damp hair away from her face.
“Erm…” She looked in his eyes. “To…to…Can we?…Will you…”
He silenced her rambling with a soft kiss and grinned when her arms wrapped around him and pulled him back to her.
The fourth time Giacomo Casanova felt Fanny Price now Fanny Casanova weep in his arms was when she told him the most life changing news; she, was with child. He had noticed a change in her demeanor.
Married for months, Giac thought he knew every little quirk.
How she wakes up and immediately rubs her eyes. How she is never fully engaged until she’s had a cup of tea. How she walks with perfect posture. She twirls her hair when she reads books and bites her lip when she needlepoints. He knew all of this, so it initially worried him when he saw her change.
She woke up looking paler. The scent of tea made her too dizzy. She constantly had her hand pressed to her lower back and quietly groaned about pain.
He had no idea what was wrong but he was afraid.
It was only when he caught Fanny, throwing up her dinner that he sent for a doctor.
For what seemed like hours, Giac walked around. He initially paced in front of their bedroom where a doctor was examining Fanny but he grew too relentless. He circled around their house. Mindlessly toying with any knick knacks he found. Tapping on the window. Re-adjusting his cravat for the hundredth time.
Finally, Giac heard the doctor approach him.
“What is it? What’s wrong with her?” Giac asked.
“It’s Mrs. Casanova!”
“Has asked me not to tell.”
Giac felt the air woosh out of his lungs. He made to go past the doctor to see for himself when the doctor said, “How am I being paid?”
In an angry haste, Giac reached in his pocket and threw his small coin purse at him. Money was irrelevant, money meant nothing compared to her.
Finally, Giac saw her. Sitting at the edge of the bed with trembling hands toying with the hem of her nightgown. She was sniffling.
With slow steps he knelt down in front of her and tried to meet her eyes. He placed a hand on her shoulder.
“What’s happened? What did he say?”
When Fanny didn’t speak, he grew even more worried.
“Fanny, please,” he gritted his teeth, “tell me.”
“Giacomo…I’m with child.” She whispered, still not meeting his eye.
“I…he….the reason I was ill….the ache in my back…I missed my last monthly but I didn’t realize,” she sniffed, “oh, Giac. Giac I’m so sorry.”
“Sorry? Fanny, Fanny my darling Fanny!” Giac wrapped her in a tight hug, “Oh my sweet girl, we’re going to be parents!”
He picked her up in his arms and began crushing her to him when he pulled back abruptly.
“Hugging you that tightly may not be good for it, eh?”
“Erm, no I suppose not.” Fanny toyed with the hairs on the back of his neck, “This is good news, Giac?” She looked up at him, showing some vulnerability.
He smiled and kissed the tip of her nose, “This is brilliant news, Fanny. You are my wife, my one true love. Of course, of course I want you to bear my children. Our children. Fanny!” He held her to him again, slightly gentler but periodically pressed kisses to her head.
“May I be truthful, Giac?” She whispered once they were both settled to sleep that evening.
“I….I am afraid.”
He blinked, “Of what?”
She sniffed, “Of the pain. Of labour and surviving it.” Giac winced, that thought hadn’t occurred to him. It was too awful to bear. “I am afraid…of whether or not I will be a good mother. My mother gave me up when I was a child. We never had a relationship.”
“Fanny…you are not your mother.”
“I know that.” She whimpered and wiped at her eyes. She turned to him and buried her face into his chest, humming in gratitude when he stroked her hair.
“Fanny…oh. I know you must be frightened of the pain. And, my dear, I wish I could endure it for you. But, Fanny, listen to me…” He bent his lips closer to her ear and whispered, “You are incredible. And together, you and I will make sure our child feels safe and loved. Just as you do to me, Fanny. You will be a brilliant mother. I promise.”
She snuggled closer to him and tangled their legs together. “I love you, Giacomo.”
“I love you, Fanny.”
“And you will be a brilliant father.”
He was glad she fell asleep and did not see himtearing up.
The fifth time Giacomo Casanova felt Fanny Price now Fanny Casanova was when their child wailed their first cry; and, this time, Giac wept with her.
He was awoken by a pillow thrown in his face.
“Giac!” He heard Fanny groan.
He blinked slowly but upon hearing her gasp of pain he bolted awake.
“What is it?!” He asked.
“It’s starting. Oh, God. Please. Please send for. doctor.”
Giac was soaked with sweat. He was so worried about Fanny and so anxious to meet his child. Each scream of her anguish pulled something in his heart and as he held her hand in both of his, he prayed to whatever was listening that both mother and child would survive.
Hours seemed to go by, the sheets were stained red and Fanny was hysterically sobbing; but, she did it. And soon, in their arms was a tiny pink little girl screaming her new lungs out.
Finally, Fanny fell asleep. Giac knew she would be sore for a while, but he was just so grateful she survived. He had never seen such an agonizing birth, but he was proud; so, very proud of his wife. He sat up in the bed as quietly as he could and gently moved her hair out of her face. “Thank you, Fanny.” He whispered and slowly moved out of bed to the nursery, where he could hear the baby fussing.
With a smile he delicately picked and cradled his child. Warmth, love and protectiveness spread through him.
“Hello, love.” He murmured, “Hello. My little Genevieve. I’m your father, and I love you so much. My name’s Giac.” He smiled.
She blinked up at him, she had his eyes. Fanny’s colour hair and her nose. Upon further inspection, Giac found that his daughter had his ears.
“Well that’s unfortunate.” He mumbled. She started to squirm in his arms and whimper and he started to bounce her. “I’m joking, I’m joking. Sorry. Your dad is a right nutter. Don’t listen to me. You’re beautiful. So beautiful. Just like your mother.” He cuddled Genevieve closer. “I promise. We’re going to have a beautiful life.”
He continued rambling and murmuring softly. Rocking his daughter in his arms.
Giacomo Casanova never imagined he would have a life like this, but feeling the warm weight of his precious little girl, he would never trade it for the world.
Once Genevieve fell back asleep, he kissed forehead and he laid her back in her crib. Giac made his way back to lay with his wife. He felt even more excited for this new life adventure, perhaps the greatest one of all.