Stupid Luck and Happenstance, Thread II

Oh dear.

If nothing else, there might finally be a solution to Suse figuring out the whole "Being able to meet the physical requirements" thing stopping her from getting what she wants vis a vie Panzer driving.

If she can do that, Kurt would be wise to get Michael to pull some strings and stick her in the "Less Likely to get shot at" Bohemian forces.
Most of all though, he had seemed to have had a particular hatred for Kiki, who he regarded as the worst sort of hypocrite because she tried to pretend that she was something else. Extended screeds about how she was the scion of wealth that had largely been purloined, gaining advancement and achievements simply by the weight of her name and not by any actual merit.
While it probably won't help, Ben should point out if that was who she really was, she wouldn't care.
I do not know if PM is trained in a medical field or not but he is laying down the symptoms of a clinical depression one by one.

And this is a not to be underestimated illness in which common advice is not only not helpful but effectively dangerous. „Have a holiday“ „pull yourself together“ only makes matters worse.

There are types of cancers that are much less deadly and still nobody would think they could heal those but with depression everybody thinks they can have a say. The only way to help somebody in this situation is to push the person into professional help.
I do not know if PM is trained in a medical field or not but he is laying down the symptoms of a clinical depression one by one.
Well, yeah.

I mean Kiki has shown Depressive Tendencies since she was a child, and that's before she started showing a big old case of Imposter Syndrome as a teen (not even as a late teen, as a mid-teen). Doesn't help that she doesn't really have any role-models outside of the most self-destructive woman on Earth (Kat) and she probably thinks that Ben is still just "humouring" her in their relationship, which is why she'll probably turn him down if he were to pop the question.

She simply doesn't believe she "deserves" happiness, and it is nearly impossible to talk someone into realising they do without some serious psychological help or a big old shock to the system, and she has had enough of the latter that she is well overdue the former.

She needs a Therapist, and one completely outside of the chain of command that includes her Father. I'd honestly suggest a Pro-Independent Polish one, or an Austrian, someone who's only stake in the game is the oaths they swore as a doctor, not someone who hopes to advance the German Medical Corps, not someone who would take prestige from a royal client.

She needs a Lionel Logue
Part 103, Chapter 1661
Chapter One Thousand Six Hundred One

3rd October 1964

Mitte, Berlin

“For the last time!” Suse yelled as she pulled the strap of her bookbag over her shoulder. “This is not a date!”

Her mother just smirked at that and Suse stormed out of the house. Dating Manfred would be gross, she had known him her entire life and he was basically her cousin.

Not for the first time Suse regretted telling her parents that she had agreed to tutor Manfred von Mischner. That wasn’t the only aggravating aspect of this whole thing. When Suse had asked what he had wanted to study, Manfred had pulled out a copy of Panzer Corps Officer’s Entrance Exam. It seemed that he had trouble with the mathematics section and the score required to gain admission had been raised recently. Suse had done her best to hide her anger upon seeing that. Both of them came from families with long traditions of service, just the difference between them came down to a chromosome and Suse seeming to get every questionable trait that her parents had to offer.

Suse had her hands thrust into the pockets of her coat as she made her way through the city streets until she got to the clubhouse of the organization that ran the Football League that Manfred was a part of, where they had agreed to meet this afternoon. For some reason he didn’t want his parents to know what he was up to. Considering the role that Aunt Helene played in Government and Uncle Hans’ career she would think that they wouldn’t have a problem with any of it. Manfred insisted on secrecy though.

While the club rules stated that they were oriented primarily towards young men and boys, girls were allowed into certain parts of the clubhouse, actually the ground floor of an office building in Mitte, the lobby and canteen mostly. Suse was to remain under the watchful eye of the staff at all times. Once she had been read the riot act about how no funny games were to be played on the premise, Suse had discovered that the staff approved of her actual purpose there.

Suse met Manfred in the canteen, it was a medium sized room with mismatched tables and chairs. A pair of refrigerators and just enough of a kitchen to heat up food that had been prepared elsewhere were provided. Like they had the week before, they sat down at the table and started going over the sample math problems. Suse was finding her patience tested by having to explain to Manfred the process so that if he was presented with a different set of problems, he could solve them. Unfortunately, that was when two of his friends walked in and started rummaging through one of the refrigerators.

“Just who is this Manny?” One of them asked as he drank from a bottle of pop that he had found, looking at Suse.

“A friend Adi” Manfred replied with pretend nonchalance, “She’s helping me with this stuff.”

“Still with this Army rot” Adi said looking at the papers scattered on the table, his unnamed friend snickered at that. “There are other, better ways to waste your life than driving Panzers around.”

“He’s too big for that” Suse said, “So he’s trying to get into the Dragoons like his father.”

“Yes, they like the Panzer crews to be small” The unnamed friend said, “Is that what you are for cupcake.”

“I couldn’t meet the standard. You have to be able to lift twenty-five kilograms” Suse said and knew that she had made a mistake as soon as she said it. Adi and the unnamed friend clearly found something about that amusing.

Getting up, Suse started to gather her things.

“Do you even weigh twenty-five kilos?” Adi asked before he grabbed the lapels of Suse’s coat and lifted her off her feet.

“Don’t be an ass Adi” Manfred said, “You were warned about pulling stunts like this, put her down before she hurts you.”

Adi and the unnamed friend laughed at that, not knowing that Suse was getting ready to kick him as hard as she could in the groin…

Instead, Adi dropped her and Suse was hardly able to keep her feet when she landed. Adi and his unnamed friend were still laughing as they left the room.

“Sorry about them” Manfred said, “They can be like that at times.”

“I don’t care” Suse replied as she wondered where the staff who were supposed to be keeping an eye on her had vanished to. All of the times that people had treated her as a helpless little girl coming back to her. “Just pick a different place next time.”

Arabian Desert

There were few things that offended the eye more than an oil field like the one that Nassim Abdullah was looking at. A couple decades earlier, he would have cheerfully butchered the workers who had come from a place called Texas. They were rude men who thought nothing of spending their days in a nearly constant drunken stupor. He was even starting to wonder if they were worse than even the British.

The thing that was staying his hand was that the Humble Oil & Refinery Company was paying him extremely well to keep their people alive. While the Company’s stated reasoning was that he was to provide security from other tribes, it was his own that controlled the area that they were operating in. There was also the matter of a rival American corporation paying off a different tribe a couple hundred kilometers away. Humble was more than happy to give Nassim dozens of the M-9 rifles that the U.S. Army was practically giving away according to the Texans. There was also the offer of heavier weapons that had been hinted at.

Like always, Nassim didn’t even pretend to trust the Americans. He drove the hardest bargain he could and for some strange reason that had caused the Executives he had dealt with to show him a small sliver of respect. Still, he could tell that their own foolish pride blinded them in that plus so many other ways. Oddly, the Americans were acting much like the Turks who had finally left the Arabian Desert decades earlier. In a place like this it was easy to see that past and present revealed what the future held.
Excellent series of updates, Kiki needs more help then previously thought and I don't know if the Pharmaceutical Revolution in the treatment of mental illness is happening ITTL but that is something to look at for Kiki along with other therapies for her.
Ironically with the Arabian Peninsula apparently being more divided it may mean along with no Israel ITTL that the Middle East may be a bit more stable which is not saying a lot.
The Charlotenburg Palace may be the new residence for the German Kaiser unless it needs a lot of work to bring it up to liveable standards then maybe a new modern residence might have to be built which will tell us how the aesthetic of the German Empire is shaping up because at this time IOTL the main architectural style is Butalism where form follows function in a minimalist approach.
Both Manfred and Suse Rosa can help each other in realizing that there are more options for them to pursue and who knows where that might lead...
Manfred could always piss off both his father and grandfather by becoming a helicopter pilot :p

Although I think Hans wouldn't really care and Manfred von would accept that at least he is flying.
Part 103, Chapter 1662
Chapter One Thousand Six Hundred Sixty-Two

20th October 1964


The battery of tests that Kiki was being subjected to were entirely unnecessary, especially considering the embarrassing reason why she had told Vicky she was feeling unwell in the first place. Not that she wasn’t relieved to learn that nothing untoward had been found. The problem had started when she had said to Vicky that she felt unwell was staying in bed that morning. Next thing Kiki knew Vicky was dragging her into the University Hospital’s Emergency Department. She had found herself playing the role of the difficult, unwilling patient that her own classmates had to deal with. And it wasn’t an act.

A couple hours later, Kiki was sitting in one of the bays of the Emergency Department listening to the conclusions that the Doctor acting as Instructor for her class had reached. She was a healthy young woman who was currently enduring menstrual cramps as the mostly male members of her class watched. Even as he thanked her for having volunteered that morning, Kiki was plotting how she might murder Vicky and make it look like an accident for this. She understood that her little sister meant well, but there were times when Vicky massively overstepped. And what was this about her having volunteered?

That was when Doctor Holz found her.

She had been attending the group meetings that he held every week of those who had been diagnosed with Persistent Traumatic Stress, it was no wonder that people reduced that awkward term down to the letters ATB. It was much easier back when it was referred to simply as shell shock.

“I heard that you have had a rough morning” Peter said as he opened the curtain that separated Kiki from the rest of the open Department.

“Having your classmates poking and prodding you certainly counts” Kiki replied crossly.

“Their turn will come” Peter said with a smile, “Finding yourself on the receiving end of that sort of treatment is an important part of learning to be a Physician, so I encourage volunteers. There is an idea popular in the East called Karma, the medical profession can produce heaps of that at times.”

No wonder the Instructor had assumed what he had.

“I’ve been to Japan and Korea” Kiki replied, “I am familiar with the idea.”

“Mind telling me what all of this was really about?” Peter asked. He clearly wasn’t about to let this go or let her change the subject.

“I felt rotten when I woke up and didn’t want to get out of bed” Kiki replied flatly, “Everyone had a good laugh when they learned why.”

“That is something you’ve handled since adolescence” Peter said, “And I didn’t hear anyone laughing. Are you sure this had nothing to do with what happened yesterday?”

It was something that Kiki didn’t even want to think about. The day before, Lothar de Maizière had been found guilty on all counts.

“He is going away forever” Peter said, “I have it on good authority that he is going to a place on the Bavarian border with Bohemia that you’ve probably never heard of, which is reserved for the very worst sort of criminal. It is said not to be a place anyone comes back from.”

“That doesn’t change anything” Kiki replied, “It doesn’t bring back the people he killed, or fix the damage he did to those who survived.”

“True” Peter said, “But it does close the book on this whole sordid mess so that you and the others affected can get on with your lives.”

Kiki just stared glumly at the wall.

“I know that none of that makes you happy” Peter said, “Life seldom works that way.”

“Is it wrong that I want to see him torn to pieces and think that he escaped his just fate?” Kiki asked.

“No” Peter replied.

Omaha, Nebraska

After sixteen years in the political wilderness the Republican Party it was looking like the Republicans finally had a winning ticket. If Hunter thought that it would do a bit of good, he might have told them to be careful what they wished for.

The Rockefeller Campaign was rolling through the Mid-West and everyone was having a high time. Hunter couldn’t figure out exactly what they were celebrating. After the deal that President Harriman had cut to get reelected four years earlier that had left a bad taste in everyone’s mouth and the slack economy the 1964 Election was a foregone conclusion. Everywhere in America it was understood that the Republican Party could run Bozo the Clown at the top of the ticket and still win. Being resigned to the inevitable wasn’t exactly a victory.

A lesson that Nelson Rockefeller seemed to have learned from four years earlier when he had been narrowly defeated was that having a running mate who was a lightening rod had not served him well. That was why Barry Goldwater had been replaced with Oregon Governor Mark Hatfield. While regarded outwardly as somewhat boring and churchgoing, Hunter knew better. He had heard whispers among the campaign staff that Hatfield was crooked and that he never passed up a chance to get a finger into someone else’s pie. Into this was a rouges gallery of corporate and religious interests who were going to be demanding their pound of flesh.

As an American, Hunter could see wall that they were driving towards at top speed coming over the horizon and knew that it would be bad for the country. As a Journalist though, he knew that it would be extremely good for his career.
The Democrats are in a bind, the Republicans don't need to win the South in order to win the election but the Democrats do.
The problem is the Democrats can't nominate any one with the whiff of segregation or else they will lose everywhere else and the American people don't want anyone who is associated with Harriman Administration.
What the Democrats need is someone who can talk to both White Southerners and African-Americans and is Pro Civil Rights.
Another problem is that the best candidates may be skipping this round or is really auditioning for 1968.