The truth is I've known several Tessies in my life, a woman who started out full of hopes, dreams, and a love of good times but then fell for the wrong man and their lives changed forever. Tessie has made the best of her love for Rocky but it's left her a good-hearted but hard-living woman with a tender soul. Toward the end of the story, when Clair is struggling with what to do about her relationship with Baptiste, it is Tessie, who takes her aside and tells her her own tale, the old mermaid's tale, that helps Clair make her decision.
Sometimes the most flawed characters are the most endearing. There is something so poignant in the contrast of her toughness and bravado on the outside and the tender, aching girl inside. I truly love Tessie. To me she is an enduring, heart-wrenching character, the kind of person that makes me say, "There, but for the Grace of God, go I."
This blog post is part of the April 2012 A-to-Z Blogging Challenge. Thanks for visiting.