About earrings for Kat, what about ear clips? My grandmother bequested such to my mom, thus they existed back then and are a viable alternative if you dont want to pierce your ears or dont like the idea of someone ripping an earring out of your ear ( women in a line of work where hand to Hand can happen are advised to consider using clips. Men too.)

Otto Mischner would make a dangerous spymaster or godfather. Come to think about it, mafia and yakuza started out as neighbourhood protection setups.

And Kat hasn`t yet seen the painting of Gianna....
 
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Germany after the stunt the United States pulled, might want to try and buy some B-29s and with the war against the Soviet Union over, Boeing may want to get some access to the German market and technology. Juan Tripps of Pan Am was tight with both Boeing and Gov. Dewey and he would most likely help with the deal in order to get Pan Am more routes in Europe.
 
Germany Does not need B29's, to the Luftwaffe they are already 'old hat' and at best obsolescent. The Germans will by this time have viable jet bomber prototypes in the works by now.
 
Very loud and rather obvious in many respects so you don't do it anywhere near where you're trying to sneak up on. Worse with all that tow-mass which has it's very own issues.



The Soviets were never that much of a danger and especially they weren't one long enough to allow such a decision to carry through. And indeed, look at OTL and that was a crash project with a much more substantial industrial base and economy and a LOT more room to hide the activity in. If the Germans had started a program people will know about it.
If you dont Think the Soviets were a threat you need to read the TL again. Also the remarks that loss rates in the units over the war were more than 100%.

I dont get the schnorkel issue. Its not like they would sneak up on a destroyer. They would sneak up on a Continental shelf..
 
Part 35, Chapter 416
Chapter Four Hundred Sixteen


11th September 1944

Formosa

“It cost tax payers to train him, ship him halfway around the globe” Reier said, “As a tax payer I think that we ought to have shot him the day he arrived in Cuxhaven. We’d have saved a lot of time and expense. Now we need to replace the replacement…”

“That’s enough, Reier” Tilo said. Reier looked at him and shrugged. Reier was talking about Frederick something or the other, Tilo thought he’d heard that it started with a K. They still hadn’t found his identity disk. They all knew that combat was a numbers game. Edmund, Tilo and Reier had lived in it for years but there had to be unlucky saps out there like Frederick what’s-his-name who have a Jap mortar shell land on his head during the first day. Tilo understood that Reier was blowing off steam before the operation commenced. It was a classic shit show attack across open ground against dug in machineguns. Tilo realized that this was the exact sort of mission that caused his father to volunteer for the air service.

As if to perversely punctuate Tilo’s thoughts that bastard up there with the knee mortar was firing it off again, the loud clank they made when fired was distinctive. This particular mortarman was a goddamn maestro with the thing. His half dozen or so buddies weren’t slouches either. They had discovered that the Japanese light mortars weighed in at only a hair under five kilos, could use standard Japanese hand grenades in a pinch, were absolutely idiot proof and they had nothing like it. The Marines had taken to grabbing them every chance they got. Only the lack of type 89 ammunition had kept them from adopting the thing, officialdom be damned.

They had grown tired of trying to get the fleet aircraft to provide support so they were going to attempt to provide it for themselves. Overnight they had hauled four 8cm mortars and as many shells and could be brought up from the valley. There was no subtly in this operation. The Japanese were dug in at the summit, they were attacking up a ridge that extended down from there with a sharp drop off to either side to scree covered slopes. Over the prior days they had attempted to flank the Japanese positions across those slopes without much luck.

The Hauptmann was watching the Japanese positions through his binoculars when the first mortar fired. There was a puff of yellow smoke off to the side down the slope. The Hauptmann shouted the correction and the second shell flew the target but was on the correct line. The next shell landed right atop the Japanese position.

“All right that was the signal to go” The Hauptmann yelled, “Time to prove that you deserve to be called MA.”

Tilo didn’t comment that this particular mission was the exact opposite of what the MA was supposed to be. He was more concerned about being alive to complain about it after the fact.

They started the assault as the mortars started firing at will. A mixture of high explosive and smoke. Hopefully it would keep the Japanese gunners, heads down until they were right on top of them. Tilo ran at the best speed he could on the loose ground. Then he was in the Japanese position and saw that the Japanese “machineguns” were bamboo staves panted black. He looked up and saw that some of the other men had run onto the summit and found it equally empty. It was instantly obvious what had happened.

While they had spent the night hauling the heavy 8cm mortars up the mountain, the Japanese had quietly withdrawn from the peak. The knee mortar that they had heard earlier had been enough to convince them that the positions were still occupied. Once the last of the mortar shells were gone and the bombardment began then the last few Japanese soldiers here had left.

Tilo kicked a rock down the slope. “All dressed up and no fucking party” He heard Reier say. Tilo realized that he was in perfect agreement. They had just been swindled.

----------------------------------------------------------------

Jacob looked at a map of Formosa. The Japanese were withdrawing from the island as best they could. The blockade of the northern tip of the island wasn’t complete but they still needed to run a gauntlet of submarines and S-Boats. He realized that he was just a few days from when the Formosa could officially be declared pacified. The campaign was victorious. The battle of Formosa had been totally overshadowed by the surrender of Moscow which annoyed him a bit.

Jacob had also received word that the Heer was planning on transferring several Army Corps along the Trans-Siberian Railroad and sometime next spring the invasion of Manchuria could began. Just like that, the KLM would no longer be running the show in Far East. In the meantime, there were plans to seize former German Pacific possessions before the Japanese realized that their logistical lines were growing more precarious and they made a headlong rush for the exits. There was concern that the Americans would get ambitious. The truth was that Jacob thought that was stupid. The Americans were always ambitious. The Japanese would starve as the world burnt down around them long before they ever considered running for the exit. Jacob intended to impress that upon the Heer’s Commander when he arrived. Then there was the prickly pride of their Chinese allies, they would probably be less than thrilled with the invasion of Manchuria even if it freed them from the continued threat of Japanese invasion.
 
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I think Kat is going to discover that she gets near saintlike reverence from legions of Russian women, especially those she and Jehane/Gianna cared for during the war. Maria's article will help, not hurt that, by showing deep common ground.

She is going to be shocked IMO by how much the article will not matter to the SKA, and I suspect it will not deter Mr. Blackwood. Nancy Jensen's POV should be interesting too, because a story this huge will reach across the Atlantic.

Also, to the person who wanted her to get a GoT-type pointless death: isn't Kat's harmonious-with-the-story reality bad enough?

Something else to consider is that TTL is really going to bring back nobility as a concept of rewarding not blood but character and self-sacrifice. Kat, Jacob, and Emil are about the farthest people from having noble blood; yet each has demonstrated extraordinary service and skill to Germany.
 
I think Kat is going to discover that she gets near saintlike reverence from legions of Russian women, especially those she and Jehane/Gianna cared for during the war. Maria's article will help, not hurt that, by showing deep common ground.

She is going to be shocked IMO by how much the article will not matter to the SKA, and I suspect it will not deter Mr. Blackwood. Nancy Jensen's POV should be interesting too, because a story this huge will reach across the Atlantic.

Also, to the person who wanted her to get a GoT-type pointless death: isn't Kat's harmonious-with-the-story reality bad enough?

Something else to consider is that TTL is really going to bring back nobility as a concept of rewarding not blood but character and self-sacrifice. Kat, Jacob, and Emil are about the farthest people from having noble blood; yet each has demonstrated extraordinary service and skill to Germany.
There is a lot of people who Will find Kat's achievements even more impressive, and some who just judge based on merit.
But there are also those rather self-rightous, conservative what is the word...? Ah : Idiots
They Will probably Think that she is a bad Girl after all, not to be trusted, even tainted (religious beliefs on top of the other personality traits). Its going to pit the empress against the conservatives so it Will cause quite a stirr.
 
Germany Does not need B29's, to the Luftwaffe they are already 'old hat' and at best obsolescent. The Germans will by this time have viable jet bomber prototypes in the works by now.
The B-29s are still good to use against Japan, they are obsolete against Germany.

There are several good reasons for the Germans to buy the B-29:
From what I gathered from this timeline is that Germany's bombers did not have the range and bomb payload to be effective against the Soviet Union and the B-29 will give them that capacity.
Germany aerospace industry is going ahead with jets and rockets and there is no reason to build from the drawing board up a plane that is already out of date.
The United States has already done the work on the B-29 so all that Germany has to do is just fly them out to Formosa.
Boeing needs to recoup its investment on the project and this will drive the price down for Germany.

For Boeing this will give them a chance to get in the European market with its passenger aircraft and also get some advanced German technology ahead of its rivals.
For the United States, with the war against the Soviet Union over, they are beginning to see the cancellation of orders from Europe and this will be a campaign issue this fall.
Voters in Kansas and Washington state where the B-29 was built are going to demand that the government approve any sales to Germany.
 
The B-29s are still good to use against Japan, they are obsolete against Germany.

There are several good reasons for the Germans to buy the B-29:
From what I gathered from this timeline is that Germany's bombers did not have the range and bomb payload to be effective against the Soviet Union and the B-29 will give them that capacity.
Germany aerospace industry is going ahead with jets and rockets and there is no reason to build from the drawing board up a plane that is already out of date.
The United States has already done the work on the B-29 so all that Germany has to do is just fly them out to Formosa.
Boeing needs to recoup its investment on the project and this will drive the price down for Germany.

For Boeing this will give them a chance to get in the European market with its passenger aircraft and also get some advanced German technology ahead of its rivals.
For the United States, with the war against the Soviet Union over, they are beginning to see the cancellation of orders from Europe and this will be a campaign issue this fall.
Voters in Kansas and Washington state where the B-29 was built are going to demand that the government approve any sales to Germany.
Maybe, but all these arguments crash head first with a simple question.

WHY Lang would even remotely approve the buying of American Bombers, regardless their extended range, if all things point, the Germans are intending to use the train lines now that the summer its coming to mobilize their veteran troops into the Russian/Chinese Frontier and open a second front with the reluctant support of the Chinese to kick off the Japanese from Manchuria.

Furthermore it would be downright retarded, as considering the economic spending from the War to the current date, the last thing that Lang would do would be to spending several times the amount of money what you could spend in the commodities what the German War Machine and Industries still FULLY in Wartime production mode could use to fuel their immediate advance into the Manchuria Front(For not talk of spending Germany's Money IN GERMANY) , into several American Bombers that are not required right now, as the likely immediate goal of the German and Allied Command its to choke the arrival of supplies to Japan, and thus choke the Japanese Industry's production with the Allied Fleet.

Add, that more than likely Junkers or other Aeronautic Companies in Germany would be throwing themselves into developing right now something that its likely to leave the B-29 in the dust, and do it in a fraction of the time that the B-29 took to design and produce, and would likely be ready for production by the time in that the Manchuria Front its consolidated with Luftwaffe Airfields what would be raining death upon the Japanese troops in Manchuria.
 
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We must remember that Peabody-Martini has stated that the war against Japan ends in 1946, so there is at least 1 1/4 year left to fight.

Unlike OTL WWII when the United States was able to build 40 aircraft carriers and numerous other ships to support them, Germany and the Allies only have enough ships to fight the IJN but not enough to take the war to Japan much less to invade or starve them out.

The Luftwaffe after the ineffectiveness of its strategic bombing campaign against the Soviet Union, went with a tactical support mission.

The IJN probably still has control of the Sea of Japan and is getting men, materials, and supplies to and from Korea and Manchuria.

The Japanese Home Islands has not been touched in any meaningful measure and Japanese industry is still going strong despite the shutdown of the "Manilla Express" and the probable cut off of trade from the United States and other neutral countries.

With all of this in mind, buying B-29s are a relatively cheap and easy way to strike Japan.
 
“Our allies, the British, have been causing trouble again”

This reminds me of Palmerston's quote: 'Nations have no permanent friends or allies, they only have permanent interests'
And so the struggle for power in the new world order begins.


Kira is showing particular astuteness by trying to Kat on board and, by extension, Jehane. A lesser person would have taken Jehane into the imperial household at this point and cut Kat out of the arrangement. Of course this would backfire in the long term as Jehane would reject such an arrangement when she could. Kira seems to anticipate this.
 
Part 35, Chapter 417
Chapter Four Hundred Seventeen


15th September 1944

Potsdam

Kat and Gianna were walking down the corridor of the Sanssouci Palace that led into the so-called women’s or western wing. When Kat had learned the history of the building she had discovered that it was an addition made decades after the death of Frederick the Great. During the lifetime of the Monarch the Palace was typically “sans femmes” which dovetailed neatly with the rumored personal life of Frederick the Second.

“We don’t have to do this” Kat said, “We could be halfway to the Swiss border before anyone noticed that we…”

Gianna smiled, “Someone taught me that you can’t hide from things forever” She said.

Kat brooded in silence in response to that.

“Do you know anything about these people?” Gianna asked.

“Nothing beyond what’s in the papers” Kat said. Kira had seen to the details, Olga and Xenia coming from their home in Denmark. Kat had been surprised to learn that Olga’s family owned a farm outside Copenhagen and had spent many lean years there. Denmark had been officially neutral in the Second Great War but a significant portion of the Danish Army had volunteered to serve in the German and Finish Armies. The two of them had both lost children in the conflict.

They came around a corner, a saw a man in his mid-thirties wearing the uniform of a Colonel in the French Army, he was tall, thin and had thinning brown hair.

“Who are you?” Kat demanded stepping in front of Gianna.

“Pleased to make your acquaintance Freiherrin Katherine, I’ve been warned about you” The Man said, “It’s George Mikhailovich by the way and I wanted to welcome the latest bastard child of the Romanov family to step out of the woodpile, there are more of us than you’d think.”

“Was that really the best way that you could have phrased that?” Gianna asked.

George just shrugged, Kat had to think for a moment. He was the son of Gianna’s Great-uncle Michael. Up close Kat saw that he was wearing the French Legion of Honor, Crux de Guerre and other decorations that said this man had not sat things out.

“I just wanted to let you know the greater scheme of things before you stepped into that shark tank” George said, “Would you rather I candy coated it?”

“Actually, thank you for not doing that” Gianna replied.

George smiled. “I fear that having you turn up alive will likely mess up the game board” He said, “And you probably want to avoid Vlad.”

Kat knew that Vladimir had been a thorn in Kira’s side for years. His scheming had resulted in Kat getting a bullet in the back. Then there were the people who he had been surrounding himself with. Small wonder that Kira was trying to keep him from coming to power. She didn’t think that Gianna needed the warning but it didn’t hurt.

“Do you know if the arrangements that I asked for are in place?” Kat asked.

“Yes” George said as he fell into step with them, “No press, no photographers, no official announcements.” In spite of George’s flip attitude regarding his family’s cutthroat politics he seemed to know his business when it came to serious matters.

“Good” Kat said. Gianna was still a minor and not a public figure. She would meet some of her extended family today but as far as the public at large was concerned the survival Jehane Thomas would remain a mystery for now.

As they entered the Court of the Empress. Kat heard Kira introduce her to the two older women as the Dame Commander of the Order of Louise. Another of Kira’s ideas, to give the Order of Louise the same stature as the other Royal Orders. Kat was the first holder of the Grand Cross and was second to only the Grand Mistress, the Empress herself, in the Order's hierarchy. Then they saw Gianna, it was said that she bore an extremely strong resemblance to Tatiana except for the dark features she inherited from her Québécois father. Olga and Xenia were clearly surprised by that.


Reichlin-Lars Airfield

The airplane itself was fairly nimble in the air in spite of its great size, that was one of the things noted as the first production Do-32 settled onto the runway. Dornier had gone back to the drawing board when they had been asked to develop a long-range successor to their highly successful Do-19 series. It had been decided that with the final version of the Do-319 the airframe had exhausted its potential.

The Do-32 itself was a work of art. Long thin wings and an incredibly refined fuselage. The gunner’s positions had been pared back to a single ventral gunner aiming remote control auto cannons in the tail. The engines were particularly novel. They had been a collaboration between György Jendrassik and Max Mueller at Daimler. Four turbine engines that generated as much power as the earlier DB600 series while weighing considerably less, spun massive propellers after being run through reduction gear. An arrangement that sidestepped some of the problems encountered with pure turbojets, namely the wild inefficiency. Daimler had managed to keep the project secret to the extent that their competition didn’t know about it until the announcement of the existence of the Do-32 a few days earlier.

György himself rode in the cockpit for this flight watching the flight crew as they had flown from the Dornier factory to Reichlin. The Hungarian engineer was delighted to see his engines in use. He had also seen a memo earlier that day that Focke-Wulf was looking at the engine for use in the next incarnation of their Condor Airliners. The future was looking bright.
 
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The IJN probably still has control of the Sea of Japan and is getting men, materials, and supplies to and from Korea and Manchuria
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...... Seriously, are you ACTUALLY reading this or just throwing comments for shits and giggles?

Because if you remembered, Schmidt pretty much sunk the near ENTIRETY of the IJN in the last years, specially the Carriers now recently during the Formosa Landings....

Right now, any remaining IJN Vessel it has a common name: Practice Target for the Allied Fleet.
 
e03abe4b2c3d2fd07f5254226f0b251a3c8944a47e1a0d29997f779f2819f416.jpg


...... Seriously, are you ACTUALLY reading this or just throwing comments for shits and giggles?

Because if you remembered, Schmidt pretty much sunk the near ENTIRETY of the IJN in the last years, specially the Carriers now recently during the Formosa Landings....

Right now, any remaining IJN Vessel it has a common name: Practice Target for the Allied Fleet.
There is still some ships that the IJN has and have you EVER looked at a map, the Sea of Japan is not that big and Japan will still have massive air superiority from land bases in Japan and Korea, and it is long way for the KLM and other Allied navies to operate without any support bases and IOTL WWII not even the USN could preform any sustained operations in the Sea of Japan until the very end of the war.

Until now the war against Japan been a sideshow but now the Heer is going to run the show with operations in Manchuria and Korea, the KLM has played their part very brilliantly, but after Formosa it is going to go back to a supporting role with possible operations in the former German New Guinea, but that is just mopping up and to prevent the United States from getting them.

Now as for my half-assed musings on Germany buying B-29s, Germany is not going to pay any cash for them.
Boeing is going to do what it does now with sales of jets to the airlines, finance the loans themselves.
Boeing needs to expand their market reach and a deal with Germany is best way to start.
And with Germany winning the war against the Soviet Union the threat of Germany not paying back any loans are now gone and every one is going to offer Germany loans at very low rates so they can get a foothold in Europe.
 
Part 35, Chapter 418
Chapter Four Hundred Eighteen


17th September 1944

In transit, German/Danish Frontier

Olga was looking out the window of the train bound for Copenhagen. The girl was Tatiana’s daughter and the introduction had gone about as well as Olga might have hoped. The woman, introduced as Freiherrin Katherine von Mischner was exactly as Jack Kennedy had described, a young woman with hard eyes and a don’t mess with me attitude except where Jehane was concerned. The Empress and her children were also a soft spot for her. Olga had been surprised to learn that she had taken Jehane into her own family as an adopted sister.

When Olga thought about it, it made perfect sense. Jehane would have been traumatized, injured and newly orphaned. A stable household with a couple of older siblings, a kindly Aunt and Uncle and a close-knit group of friends would have been exactly what she needed. When Olga had heard that Kira had been the one who had hid Jehane away she had feared that the German Empress might have forged her into a weapon against Vladimir. It seemed that Kira had done the opposite of that. Jehane seemed not to be interested in a life outside of the one she had built for herself in Berlin. When asked why Jehane had served up probably the most surprising answer she could have come up with.

“You can’t live in the past” Jehane had said, “My parents died because of that.”

What followed was a story that Olga hadn’t been prepared to hear. Tatiana and her husband had grown tired of the isolation of Tumbler Ridge and increasingly felt like there was nothing keeping them there. They had been talking about moving to Montreal or Toronto and just being the Thomas family. Jehane could have a normal life, attend school and have friends her own age. The problem they had was Olga Nikolaevna . The revolution, exile, and isolation in Canada had broken something in Olga. She had spent the last years of her life deluding herself that it was before the First Great War and she still lived with her family in Saint Petersburg. It had been that quandary over what to do with Olga that had delayed their departure. If they had left when they had wanted then the NKVD would have found an empty house in the wilderness of British Columbia. It had been an offhand comment but Jehane had said that to her the Russian throne was the purest poison that had cost her everything.

It was funny, Olga and Xenia had gotten exactly what they had thought they had wanted and it was totally not what they had been expecting. Jehane was a lot like her mother, a strong, beautiful woman. She had her own ideas about what she wanted from her life and that did not include being anyone’s pawn or most of all, anything having to do with running a country.



Berlin

The two large crates had arrived the day before, Marcella had been angry to be tripping over them in the hallway while Kat and Gianna had been in Potsdam. Kat helped Gianna carry the crates up the stairs to her room. As it had turned out they were the personal effects of Gianna’s parents and family keepsakes that had been held by the Canadian Government for the last few years. There had been a letter addressed to Gianna as Miss Jehane Thomas.

It has come to our attention that you intend to lay Inspector Henry Ethan Thomas to rest besides his wife, Tatiana in the family crypt in Saint Petersburg, Russia. We would like to inform you that he is eligible to be interred with full honors as an Officer of the Royal Canadian Mounted Patrol and the 1st Canadian Division…

Gianna had handed the letter to Kat, asking her what it meant.

“It means that they want to send people to help make sure that your father’s final arrangements are seen to” Kat said.

Gianna had opened one of the crates and pulled out a red wool uniform coat that smelled of cedar chips. A pocket watch with a blued steel case, Kat saw what looked like a crown engraved on the back of it. There was a white silk dress folded in tissue paper. Then a photograph in a silver frame. It was of Tatiana and Henry on their wedding day, it would have been in 1927 and they looked happy. Kat had never seen what Henry Thomas had looked like before, a handsome man with dark hair and an easy grin. It was easy to see how a bit of both of them lived on through their daughter.

Then Gianna found a drawstring bag and poured what looked like a fortune in diamonds into her hand.

“What is that?” Kat asked.

“My Grandmother had Mom and her sisters sew these into their clothes and my Uncle Alex’s” Gianna said, “Where were they going to hock them in the middle of nowhere?”

“Good point” Kat replied, “Is that all of them?”

“No, there ought to be another couple of these bags” Gianna said putting the diamonds back into the bag, “Most of the Russian Crown Jewels should be here. We need to find them.”

As she spoke Kat noticed that she was growing more upset. She hadn’t witnessed what had happened to her family. She had been shoved out the door, then had been shot while fleeing. When she’d been pulled out of that snowbank on the side of the road her rescuers had been more worried about taking care of the living than those who were already dead. Gianna had never had a chance to properly say her goodbyes. Having her parent’s things sent to her was bringing all of that to the surface. Kat had been debating whether or not it would be a good idea to have Gianna go with Kira when she took the Romanov family to Saint Petersburg. Kat hugged Gianna as she started crying. Now she realized that there really wasn’t a choice. It was something that had to be done.
 
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If they had left when they had wanted then the NKVD would have found an empty house in the wilderness of British Columbia.
I kind of doubt that the Soviet assassins would have been hampered by their quarry residing in a City.
The only question is whether or not Vladimir does something stupid....
No matter what, at least Jehane will be safe from bodily harm. It would take a special kind of stupid to try to assassinate Jehane when everybody (and by everybody, I mean people who either can and will retaliate violently, or have the power to bury his political ambitions) knows you're the only one with the motive to do it.
If anything, Vladimir would rather that Jehane continues to happily live the life she made for herself rather than her ties to the Romanov dynasty be outed by outside actors.
 
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