Stupid Luck and Happenstance, Thread II

Our 1 year 10 month old grandson can climb over baby gates. He did and our daughter found him on the stairs crying as he couldn't get back over it from that side.
Similar story for me, except for a nephew, and he got about halfway up a spiral staircase, got confused, and started crying because he didn't know where he was.
 
So, basically this again?
Well I mean clearly the Chinese can't be trusted to govern themselves /s

The "best" solution for the world would be a LoN mandated "Everybody stay the fuck out, don't pour gasoline on it, and just stick to humanitarian aid no that doesn't mean rifles France" stance. Problem is though, unless I'm misremembering, the US ain't in the LoN TTL, Russia has its own interests in Manchuria and Germany's ability to make Russia sit down and shut up is shrinking everyday. Britain and France have their own "Retreat from Empire" issues to deal with it so trying to help out China will be somewhere on the bottom of their list of priorities. Germany simply can not afford to get involved with China again, unless P-M is setting us up for one hell of a fall for Germany.

And of course, no-one is letting Japan anywhere near China, because that would be, at best, a "bad" idea.

Eventually a Warlord will get to the top position and when he does, that's when the International Community needs to come knocking and tell him in a united voice that if he doesn't start working to make China a more stable place, he can kiss any international money and supplies goodbye.
 
Well I mean clearly the Chinese can't be trusted to govern themselves /s

The "best" solution for the world would be a LoN mandated "Everybody stay the fuck out, don't pour gasoline on it, and just stick to humanitarian aid no that doesn't mean rifles France" stance. Problem is though, unless I'm misremembering, the US ain't in the LoN TTL, Russia has its own interests in Manchuria and Germany's ability to make Russia sit down and shut up is shrinking everyday. Britain and France have their own "Retreat from Empire" issues to deal with it so trying to help out China will be somewhere on the bottom of their list of priorities. Germany simply can not afford to get involved with China again, unless P-M is setting us up for one hell of a fall for Germany.

And of course, no-one is letting Japan anywhere near China, because that would be, at best, a "bad" idea.

Eventually a Warlord will get to the top position and when he does, that's when the International Community needs to come knocking and tell him in a united voice that if he doesn't start working to make China a more stable place, he can kiss any international money and supplies goodbye.
Japan involved in China again... yeah... nah...
Germany may get sucked in, again, by assisting its regional allies; Korea, Vietnam & Taiwan, which have recent & historic 'border issues' with China. Korea will definitely shoot first & examine the bodies afterwards if any Chinese forces comes near them.
Russia also has historic border issues with China & are reasserting themselves on the world stage. Aside from Manchuria, they will respond if the civil war spills over the border.
India... ditto on the border issues, but Kashmir & Arunachal Pradesh will be their main concerns. They may/will seek to stabilise or extend the borders there.
Tibet will be concerned mainly about violence spreading. I see them allying with India & Nepal for regional security.
Britain, while seeking to withdraw from many of its colonies, will not want to see them swallowed by someone else, so they are intervening, financially at least, over Burma & Hong Kong.
Portugal will seek to protect Macau.
France, AFAIK still has Laos, so that will be their reason to interfere.
Mongolia will just want to be left alone.
The United States is sending weapons, cash & 'advisors' in again. Because of greed, pride & a desire to be seen as relevant on the world stage while simultaneously wanting little to do with it.

Honestly, this will be a major crisis for the LoN; one that may break it as they try to restrain all interested parties from making things worse.
 
Bah, when could Vietnam ever hope to defeat La Bonne Republiqúe? .... :p
Especially as this time around France wasn't humiliated by occupation. Also, they're more likely to dig in their heels, as they usually saw them not as colonies, but as part of France (just, you know, on another continent and across an ocean or two).
 
Especially as this time around France wasn't humiliated by occupation. Also, they're more likely to dig in their heels, as they usually saw them not as colonies, but as part of France (just, you know, on another continent and across an ocean or two).
That's why I'm waiting on TTL's Algeria to blow up anyday now....
 
Japan involved in China again... yeah... nah...
Japan is most likely is going to stand back and let the West get stuck in the suck hole known as China while they laugh and sell to all sides in "The Revenge of the Rising Sun".
The United States is sending weapons, cash & 'advisors' in again. Because of greed, pride & a desire to be seen as relevant on the world stage while simultaneously wanting little to do with it.
The United States IOTL has a massive agriculture surplus problem and this being an election year selling it to China will help the incumbent party (Democratic) in the Mid West also selling heavy equipment and vehicles are a plus, the arm sales are really just a way for the Americans to get their foot in the door.
 
Part 102, Chapter 1649 New
Chapter One Thousand Six Hundred Forty-Nine



9th August 1964

Bad Reichenhall

It being Sunday afternoon, Lucy and Gertrud had separately insisted that Kiki should accompany them when they went into town. Rauchbier was once again in the company of Johannes, Erwin and Lucy’s four-year-old grandson. He and his Uncle Joseph had been the one to go up to the chalet and let the dog out before he made a mess, chewed the legs off the table or who knows what else when Kiki had fallen asleep in the parlor a few days earlier. It was something that Kiki was grateful that he had done. It seemed that Johannes had wanted a dog and having Rauchbier for the summer was dream come true for him. Kiki was fine with the arrangement so long as an adult kept an eye on them.

Erwin had once commanded the Alpine Division whose barracks were located in Bad Reichenhall before the Second World War had started. He had gone on to bigger things, but his family still had the house near the town here where they lived during the summer and they commanded a great deal of respect in the community. That was evident as they walked between shops and markets. The Kiki’s profound relief, she was completely ignored except by Lucy who occasionally asked her opinion.

What wasn’t a relief, was that the presence of armed men from either the First Foot or the BII were following her closely. It was assumed that with troops from the Bad Reichenhall Barracks crossing his property on a nearly constant basis, no one in their right mind would dare to approach Kiki without permission there. The town was a different proposition though. Kiki had heard that after her collapse a month before the press was rife with speculation about her health. There were rumors floating around about how she was in a coma, hidden away somewhere or had required extensive brain surgery. It really was strange how that sort of speculation tended to grow with retelling. Kiki just wished that it was about someone else.

What Erwin had told her had kept rolling through her head. Gertrud had told her that he had been speaking of his own situation decades earlier when he had followed through with his engagement with Lucy though he had already had Gertrud with a woman he had met named Walburga, family pressure had been involved. Apparently, he had been told that the match was inappropriate, and she never was able to get over that rejection eventually dying of what Gertrud said was broken heart. Lucy seemed to be extremely excepting of the entire situation, having Gertrud and her children around constantly. It seemed that when Gertrud’s marriage had fallen apart, she had come home and had built a new life for herself in Bad Reichenhall. She stayed and took care of the house during the winter months as well as pursuing her own career.

Kiki was used to convoluted family trees, her grandfather being an infamous womanizer had consequences. Aunt Sigi was supposedly just one of several children that he had refused to acknowledge, she just happened to be the one so far who had refused to be ignored. In her thinking, Erwin had seemed to have handled it as best he could, but it was easy to see how he could have ended up with a few regrets.

“What do you think Kristina?” Lucy asked, snapping her into the present.

She was holding up a red dress that she had just found on the rack.

“I think that’s a bit small for you” Kiki replied.

Gertrud smirked and Lucy gave her a look.

“Don't be silly, for you” Lucy said, “Lea is going to be here this week and having the two of you dressing that way will be intolerable.”

“What’s wrong with how I dress?” Kiki asked.

“Lea dressing like she has just come back from war has been a constant complaint of Lucy’s for ages” Gertrud said, “And your father did give us a bit of money to cover your expenses while you are staying on top of the rent for the chalet.”

It shouldn’t have been a surprise that he had done that, Kiki thought to herself. He had done the same thing five years earlier when she had gone to the South of France.



Washington D.C.

The hot, humid days that defined the Capital during this time of the year were in full swing. Congress had taken care of the basic housekeeping before leaving for the Summer Recess. Considering the tensions that were engulfing the rest of the nation, it was one of those rare occasions where the District of Columbia was an oasis of relative calm. The waning days of the Harriman Administration were all about maintaining that status quo. Everyone figured that barring an event of biblical proportions, it would probably be Nelson Rockefeller who would be sworn into office in January. Exactly what that meant for the country had yet to be seen.

“I’m surprised that you were able to get this” Averell Harriman said looking at the minutes of the meeting that had taken place in Wunsdorf, Germany days earlier. “This is basically saying that while the Germans are interested in keeping the railways open, they aren’t interested in sending in their army to do the job.”

“Because we have been burned by document leaks like this in the past, I would take it with a rather large gain of salt” Frank Church, the National Security Advisor, replied. “There is also the bit in there which mentions recent events in Afghanistan, where the Russians paid off the Shah to build a rail line through that country that connects to existing tracks over the Khyber Pass and into India. Within a year’s time, the rail lines through China will be of significantly less strategic value. Why fight a war when you don’t need to?”
 
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He and his Uncle Joseph had been the one to go up to the chalet and let the dog out before he made a mess,
Smart.

A hyper dog with separation anxiety can trash the place.

I once rescued an escaped dog, it took a few days to find his people, and in one shift I had to work, the dog destroyed my blinds. I made sure to get a reciept, his people were happy to get him back, but not thrilled that they owed me.
 
Smart.

A hyper dog with separation anxiety can trash the place.

I once rescued an escaped dog, it took a few days to find his people, and in one shift I had to work, the dog destroyed my blinds. I made sure to get a reciept, his people were happy to get him back, but not thrilled that they owed me.
In their position, I would happily pay for the blinds if you'd rescued my dog. But then that's just me.
 
... is that the Americans actually being sensible? What a surprise!

Cue some other dimwit doing something to trigger the war nobody wanted.
It sounds more like they are trying to convince themselves that the Germans won't intervene and it's safe to stick their nose in.
 
“I’m surprised that you were able to get this” Averell Harriman said looking at the minutes of the meeting that had taken place in Wunsdorf, Germany days earlier. “This is basically saying that while the Germans are interested in keeping the railways open, they aren’t interested in sending in their army to do the job.”

“Because we have been burned by document leaks like this in the past, I would take it with a rather large gain of salt” Frank Church, the National Security Advisor, replied. “There is also the bit in there which mentions recent events in Afghanistan, where the Russians paid off the Shah to build a rail line through that country that connects to existing tracks over the Khyber Pass and into India. Within a year’s time, the rail lines through China will be of significantly less strategic value. Why fight a war when you don’t need to?”
In this matter, the Germans appear to be following the traditional British policy of spending cash in preference to blood. Why fight when a bribe will do the same job? The fighting only comes after the bribees refuse, repeatedly, to stay bribed. And even then its usually easier to bribe someone else to do the fighting for you, preferably the main bribee's 2IC (palace coups are typically cheaper). Ironically, China also traditionally used the same methods in its dealings with its neighbours.

As for Kiki, she may finally be coming around to the idea that, just maybe, her relationship with Ben might not be as impossible as she imagined. Cue panic when she does realise this, because an impossible relationship is a relatively safe one; after all it's not really serious, right? But an actual relationship? That's a for real, life changing, seriously important deal.
 
Part 102, Chapter 1650 New
Chapter One Thousand Six Hundred Fifty



14th August 1964

Pskov Oblast, Russia

When Anya had declined to travel with Sasha and Fyodor to their holdings in Siberia this summer, she had not had any plans for what she would do instead. It had been a chance encounter with one of the other girls who she had grown up with at the orphanage that had put events in motion that had ended with her back in Pskov. She recalled how the other girl had been shocked to learn that Anya had been a dancer until she had gotten injured and was currently attending University. “You are so lucky” was what she had to say about Anya’s life.

The following days had been spent learning just what had happened to the other orphans who had been there with Anya when they had been children. The ones that were still alive and could be located that is. It had been a sobering experience for Anya. She had certainly not thought of herself as lucky until she started to look into that. It seemed like if they had left Pskov and had not been prepared for the world that they had entered. The question that Anya with was exactly why that had happened? Going back to Pskov had seemed like the best place to get answers.

“It is because of the lack of resources” The Abbess had said once Anya had brought the matter up with her, “We do our best to get them into vocational training or employment that they are suited to, but all of the children tend to come from difficult situations.”

The meeting with the Abbess ended with her telling Anya that she was welcome to stay for as long as she wanted and that she was looking forward to speaking further with her over diner that night. As Anya wandered around the Convent that had been her entire world when she had been a child. It seemed so much smaller than how she remembered it. The benches where she had told her wild stories to Sasha were still there. Somewhere along the line Anya had realized that those stories, the flights of fancy that Sasha had encouraged her to take, had been what had prompted her to take Anya in. Had Sasha known what had been ahead of her if Anya had remained here? It looked like she had.



Bad Reichenhall

The letter had arrived via courier and he had insisted that Kiki sign for it. Her summons to appear in September as a witness at the trial of the self-styled Jacobins who had survived the incidents of the 22nd of April. It was something that she had been waiting for once she knew that they had been taken in alive. Though Kiki hadn’t watched television or looked at a newspaper in weeks, she was aware that the ripples from that whole sordid affair were spreading outwards. The embezzled money had gone to a lot of absurd things, the list was growing longer by the hour. Worst of all, was the funds that had gone to movements that had been done for the express purpose of destabilizing the Empire.

Kiki’s father had supposedly stripped Franz von Papen of all titles and severely sanctioned his estate in the most public way possible. His coconspirators had suffered similar fates. Oddly, it wasn’t considered a matter of criminal law because they had been found in breach of their contract with the House of Hohenzollern. That was well within the powers of the Emperor and if any of the Junkers had any objections, they were staying extremely quiet about it. It had been years since anyone had seen that sort of power used in such an overt manner. One of their own had been caught behaving in an indefensible manner and to challenge the Emperor in the wake of that risked being on the receiving end of the wrath of an enraged public. That was probably why von Papen was under house arrest until the investigation was completed and criminal proceedings began. It was Kiki’s understanding that von Papen was far more frightened of losing his wealth and privileged position than he was of going to prison, so what had happened was most fitting punishment.

The situation for Kiki personally remained frustrating. She knew that she was supposed to be recovering, but it was impossible to tell if that was what was happening. What if the problems she had during the previous term persisted? Medical school would be out of the question if she couldn’t maintain focus because she was impulsively doing things other than what she was supposed to be doing. Lothar’s aim had just been to kill her, but the idea of her. What if he had succeeded despite his clumsy execution, just not in the manner that he had intended, by destroying her ability to achieve her aspirations?

It was something that Kiki had plenty of time to think about as she had retreated to the isolation of the chalet more often these days. Lea had come from Berlin with her husband as well as the arrival of Manfred, Erwin and Lucy’s son from Stuttgart. It was a reunion of someone else’s family and Kiki had been left feeling like an intruder. Watching the small fire burning in the stove was all there was to do here after dark and at least that was a simple past time when she couldn’t sleep. It was strange how after months of struggling to stay awake at times, now she was plagued with insomnia.
 
“It is because of the lack of resources” The Abbess had said once Anya had brought the matter up with her, “We do our best to get them into vocational training or employment that they are suited to, but all of the children tend to come from difficult situations.”
That, and the underlying hope that the girls would choose to be nuns, leads them to focus a little too much on the religious doctrine & not enough on things like life skills; how to handle finances; how to handle men, especially the predatory ones, etc.

The embezzled money had gone to a lot of absurd things, the list was growing longer by the hour. Worst of all, was the funds that had gone to movements that had been done for the express purpose of destabilizing the Empire.
Called it. Run of the mill greed & stupidity, combined with rage against change & fear of getting caught; hence the bright idea of using the Kaiser's own money to topple the Kaiser & the Empire.

Kiki’s father had supposedly stripped Franz von Papen of all titles and severely sanctioned his estate in the most public way possible. His coconspirators had suffered similar fates. Oddly, it wasn’t considered a matter of criminal law because they had been found in breach of their contract with the House of Hohenzollern
Oooh. Good one. Violation of contract law. Centuries of precedent in German jurisprudence there. Hell, in anyone's, for that matter. There are all sorts of feudal and semi-feudal requirements & obligations that flow both ways. Disputes over 'rights & entitlements' were frequent between higher & lower ranks, especially the peasantry. Disputes between towns & the countryside over access to markets & supplies. Despite decades of lazily taught history, badly written period books & plays, and the best efforts of Hollywood, medieval peasants were usually well versed in property & contract law and would sue at the drop of a hat. They had to in order to survive the power imbalance.
 
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