The more I think about this it seems to me to be a delayed "Teenage Rebellion" phase that Jehane is going thru right now.
First with all the trauma physically, mentally, and emotionally that Jehane suffered in the Tumbler Ridge Massacre followed by being in a strange country in which she did not know the language and being is a big city with people she does not know, topped off by finding out her family history and fearing for her own safety, Jehane in her teenage years did everything necessary to keep on the good side of her protectors and did not cause any problems for them that would cause them in her own mind to cast her out.
Now with the war over and the men responsible for the death of family dead themselves, a great feeling of safety and piece of mind had just come to Jehane and now that is being snatched away from her by forces outside of her control.
Jehane wants to be in control of her own life, the fact that she is doing it in the wrong way does not matter to her right now, she just wants to be in control of her life just once.
 
Part 53, Chapter 727
Chapter Seven Hundred Twenty-Seven


18th April 1949

Kimberly, South Africa

“Each week I only get two minutes to talk to my wife, you interrupted that so I guess that makes us square” Hans said, “We’ll need to get a medic to look at those burns and everyone who bet that Jost would kick your ass lost money tonight so they’re going to be sore about that for the next few days.”

Bas noticed that his hands were twitching, and his fingernails were blackened. He’d escaped his cell and slipped out a back window of the building only to find that he was inside a fenced in compound within the sprawling German base outside Kimberly. He’d tried to hop the fence and discovered that it was electrified the hard way when he’d been thrown back several meters. His guards had then dragged him back into the building where he’d been imprisoned, and he saw the chalkboard in the ready room for the first time. 18th April 7 to 8 PM and Electric Fence had been circled. The Jerry had been running a pool as to when he’d make the escape attempt and what would stop him. The most chilling was just the words Local Wildlife and no one had bet that he would make a successful escape. As an adult there had been few times that Bas had truly felt defeated but to have his face rubbed this way in how thoroughly he’d been outmaneuvered gave him that feeling.

“Got to hand it to you Nelson” Hans said, “You won the entire pot.”

Then watched as the German officer handed the Kaffer an envelope, that according the chalkboard, had several hundred Reichsmarks in it. “Thank you, Major von Mischner” Nelson said. Bas just wanted to cry at his present misfortune as this Nelson left the room.

Hans then sat down on a chair opposite Bans and leaned towards Bas. “Are you ready to answer a few questions?” He asked.

In the days that he’d been a prisoner here, his captors had never once asked him a question. Now though? What sort of cruel game was this?


Tumbler Ridge, British Columbia

Gianna and Asia had made the train to Paris and bought airfare to New York. Since then it had been a tiring blur of travel, sleeping on airplanes and only stopping while waiting for the next flight. Gia figured that once they got traced to this side of the Atlantic where she would be going would be incredibly obvious and they would be caught in perhaps an hour or two at most, but this was where she had to come. Doctor Holz had said she would have to go back to the beginning before she could move forward. He’d meant that in a metaphorical sense, but Gia knew that she needed to go back for real. This place, where she’d been born, where she’d lost everything the first time and nearly lost her life as well.

Asia parked the car they had rented for probably more than it was worth in Dawson Creek, it was a rusted out heap, but the engine had kept running all the way here. “We’re here” Asia said.

With great reluctance Gia got out of the car. It was spring, and the sun was warm against the skin of her face. She could hear birds singing and it was peaceful. The house showed signs of neglect but located so far from anything it was unlikely to have been vandalized. Weeds had taken over her mother’s flower bed and only a few grey weathered wooden posts showed that the kitchen garden had ever been there. She didn’t know what she’d been expecting. A place where time had stopped, a dark stain upon the landscape? A place where the sun didn’t shine? Instead the world had proceeded.

“This is the house where your family lived?” Asia asked as they walked to the front porch, the gravel of the driveway crunching under their feet. Grass was slowly overtaking the driveway, but it was still a few seasons from completing that conquest.

“And died” Gia replied.

Asia understood, probably better than most. During the war her parents had taken advantage of Heer offering free transport west to evacuate Asia and her siblings. They had however stayed behind to finish the harvest. Asia had only talked about it once, she said that her parents had died for a field of potatoes. When asked why she never talked about what had happened Asia had described the pain as being like the scars on Gia’s body, still there even if never talked about.

The planks of the porch made alarming sounds as they made their way to the locked front door. Gia felt along the top of the doorjamb until she found the key and unlocked it. The house smelled of dust and mold as they entered. The bullet holes were gone, the people in the nearby town had made the effort to make repairs and clean up after what had happened here. All the furniture was gone but Gia remembered that her family had no attachment to it, most of it had been mismatched and second hand. Climbing the stairs Gia saw the room that her Uncle Alexei had spent his last years in, the room her Grandparents had shared, her own parents room and that of her Aunt Olga. Finally, at the end of hall was the room that had belonged to her Aunt Anastasia before she’d died in a car accident, it had eventually passed to Gia. Opposite of that was her mother’s sewing room, what had been her Aunt Maria’s bedroom until she’d been hospitalized for tuberculosis. Looking around what had been her bedroom all Gia could think of was that it was a lot smaller than she remembered.

It was when they went back downstairs and got to the kitchen that Gia had started crying. This was where she’d last seen her mother alive.
 
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Someone give that girl a hug.

Next stop Montreal, where aunt and uncle Theodora and Raphael plus cousins Laure and Zoé live and where she can get hugs.

Edit: Gia should derive comfort from how her mother bought time for her to get away.

Whenever I think about the Tumbler Ridge Massacre I fantasize the NKVD running into a company of the First Foot, a platoon of the SKA and Kat. The RCMP would never go for it, of course.
 
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Next stop Montreal, where aunt and uncle Theodora and Raphael plus cousins Laure and Zoé live and where she can get hugs.

Edit: Gia should derive comfort from how her mother bought time for her to get away.

Whenever I think about the Tumbler Ridge Massacre I fantasize the NKVD running into a company of the First Foot, a platoon of the SKA and Kat. The RCMP would never go for it, of course.

The Tumbler Ridge Massacre will likely become a key POD for this timeline's AH.com, perhaps to the point that it becomes an overused POD.
 
The Tumbler Ridge Massacre will likely become a key POD for this timeline's AH.com, perhaps to the point that it becomes an overused POD.[/]

What's most interesting is that the POD from our world (Verdun) would not necessarily be this world's main perceived POD.
 
The Des Moines incident would probably become the main perceived POD if I had to guess.

However:

Walter Page, the US Ambassador to the British Empire boarded the USS Des Moines, he needed to be in Washington DC immediately. He was increasingly alarmed by what was happening in Europe, it seemed that all sides of the war had abandoned civilized conduct. His hope was that he could convince President Wilson the necessity of having America intervene on behalf of civilization and democracy before it got worse.

And:

In the days that followed it was an international story that the ship carrying the American Ambassador had vanished in the North Atlantic. Then stories of German battleships attacking British and French flagged ships started popping up. Three days after the sinking a sailor from the Des Moines herself had been found in a life boat by fishermen off the coast of Ireland. Apparently, they’d tried to abandon ship after the first ranging shot because the Captain had recognized Moltke’s profile and known he stood no chance. Only this man had survived.

After that it was banner headlines on both sides of the Atlantic and public opinion had reached fever pitch. President Woodrow Wilson who had campaigned for reelection on how he had kept America out of the war the prior November. Submitted Articles of War on the German Empire, Austro-Hungarian Empire, Ottoman Empire and all co-belligerents.

On the 10th of December, 1916 The United States House of Representatives and United States Senate passed those Articles by unanimous vote.

The European Great War had just gone Global.

End of Part 2

A: Des Moines never taken under fire by Moltke => Walter Page returns to DC and makes his case for US involvement.

1: Page convinces Wilson and US enters war - same result as TTL.

2: Page dismissed as alarmist - no US involvement.

B: Lifeboat never found but Germany suspected.

1: Suspicions dismissed as circumstantial - no US involvement.

2: Suspicions enough for US - same result as TTL.

No US involvement = war grinds on but eventually a relatively weaker Entente asks relatively stronger Central Powers for an armistice => substantially the same result as TTL.
 
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A: Des Moines never taken under fire by Moltke => Walter Page returns to DC and makes his case for US involvement.
1: Pages convinces Wilson and US enters war - same result as TTL.
2: Page dismissed as alarmist - no US involvement.
B: Lifeboat never found but Germany suspected.
1: Suspicions dismissed as circumstantial - no US involvement.
2: Suspicions enough for US - same result as TTL.
No US involvement = war grinds on but eventually a relatively weaker Entente asks relatively stronger Central Powers for an armistice => substantially the same result as TTL.
How dire was the Entente situation at the time of American entry? Did the USA know that the Entente was (begining) to scrape the financial barrel? If yes the PODs could also be that the Entente was bocoming desperate to gain new "pawns" in its war. So there may be some theories that the British sunk the Des Moines.
On the other side, it could also be thought, that the USA "forced" its way in, by parading a warship through an active war zone... thus risking the sinking and getting the result Wilson wanted. Think the Spanish-American war where the USA blamed the Spanish for the Maine.

There would be enough ambiguity that the theories would be colorful and wacky... but with how the Germans used the post war time to gain the leading role in Europe and reestablished its position in the world and became a very important international player. So it was all the Kaisers masterfull plan.
 
Part 53, Chapter 728
Chapter Seven Hundred Twenty-Eight


18th April 1949

Tumbler Ridge, British Colombia

Gia had been crying from the instant she entered the kitchen until Asia got her to sit down on the back steps at the back of the house. Sitting there with Gia leaning on her, Asia just waited, she wasn’t sure for what. It was sunny, and a light wind was blowing, it was too nice of a day for Gia to be so sad, but Asia understood. Asia couldn’t help but noticing that there were several grave markers with Cyrillic script. She knew that the bodies had been taken to Germany and eventually they had been buried in Peter and Paul Cathedral in Saint Petersburg, Russia Still seeing those caused a chill to run through her. Asia heard a car engine coming up the driveway and the crunch of car tires on the gravel of the driveway. Gia had said that they would be found in only an hour or so, she’d been correct.

“My parents had been arguing with each other” Gia said wiping her nose and sniffing, “They had been for months, they didn’t know what to do with Olga and it had gotten worse after Christmas. Doctor Holz says that something happened to Aunt Olga during the revolution, their imprisonment or afterwards that broke her. It was easier for her to live in the delusion that it was still 1913 before the war. My mother felt that if they put Olga in care then she would be abandoning the last of her family. My father said that she needed to think about my future, that I was just as much a part of her family and I had no future here.”

Asia heard the creak of footsteps in the Kitchen. She unsheathed the karambit that had been a gift from Kat. Gia might not care about what happened to her, but if anything happened to Gia… Kira would have her killed and then Kat would get vicious.

“My mother had been working on dinner when the shooting started, fuming about my father. She pushed me out this door and told me not to stop running” Gia said, “I didn’t listen, I stopped and watched from those trees over there.” Gia gestured towards the tree line about a hundred meters away. “I saw them drag the bodies of Olga and my mother from the house. They had shot them and were comparing photographs from years earlier. Aunt Olga was the most harmless person I’ve ever known. I didn’t understand why anyone would hurt her. Then they saw me…”

Asia knew the rest, she’d seen the movie. Gia had almost died trying to walk back into Tumbler Ridge looking for help after she’d gotten shot.

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

Sir Malcolm Blackwood had read the official report of the Tumbler Ridge Massacre, nowhere in it had there been a witness statement like the one that he’d just listened to. The Soviet Agents who’d done the killing had all died at the hands of German Abwehr on the orders of the Kaiserin. Lavrentiy Beria and Joseph Stalin had been found guilty of a staggering number of crimes, among them had been ordering the deaths that had occurred here.

Gianna Strobel AKA Jehane Alexandra Thomas-Romanova and her friend Asia Lawniczak were sitting on the steps just outside the kitchen door that led down to the back garden. Malcolm knew better than to assume for a heartbeat that he could take them by surprise. Gianna might be beside herself, but her friend was a different story, and they had both been trained by Countess von Mischner herself which meant that they would be a nightmare if they put up a fight. He might have been able to detain them for traveling under false documents or any number of other things, that was however in no one’s interest. Gianna was a Canadian citizen which would complicate the arrest and Asia was a part of the security detail of the German Imperial Family which would also complicate things.

Malcolm cleared his throat and Gianna looked over her shoulder and looked at him with swollen, bloodshot eyes. The jig was up.

“Sorry to interrupt” Malcolm said, “But the entire world is looking for you two.”

Asia gave an exasperated sigh, she resented the intrusion. “Why are you here, Sir Malcolm, isn’t this way below your paygrade?”

“I could have sent one of my people to take care of it, but they might handle it wrong” Malcolm replied, “The two of you get handled roughly, respond badly and get thrown in the county jail. Then I would have my own daughter-in-law, Countess von Mischner on the phone to her friend, the Duchess of York, demanding to know why her adopted sister was arrested. Czar Georgy finds out, it snowballs from there and you know the rest. I figured I’d simplify things by coming myself.”

“Don’t argue, Asia” Gianna said, “We’ll come with you.”

“Very well” Malcolm said as he noticed a small blade held against Asia’s right wrist and the steel ring around her index finger. It was just as well that these two were coming peacefully, most of his people might have underestimated them and that would have been a bloody mess.

The two young women stood up and followed Malcolm out to the car, one of the two uniformed Mounties who had come with Malcolm looked quizzically at them as they got into the back seat of the car. It was said that Asia Lawniczak had been selected for training because she had a close physical resemblance to Jehane Thomas, the two of them could easily be mistaken for sisters.

“I figured that I would hold off on informing your family in Europe that I found you” Malcolm said, “Your Aunt and Uncle in Montreal would love it if you visited them before you return to Berlin to face the music.”

“Thank you” Gianna said as the car turned around in the narrow driveway. “About the car we rented?”

“We’ll get someone local to take care of it” Malcolm replied.

They sat in silence for a few moments, “Did you get what you came for?” Malcolm asked.

“I don’t know” Gianna said glumly.

“Figured that you should know that this property extends from the top of the ridge to the road” Malcolm said.

“So” Gianna replied, she didn’t see the importance of that.

“It’s a couple hundred acres of forest, not worth much presently but you don’t want to sell it” Malcolm said, “There’s a proposed highway that will pass near here and the value will go up because of that.”

Gia nodded indifferently. She understood that Sir Malcolm was just trying to look out for her but all the money in the world wasn’t going to bring her family or childhood back.
 
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Jehane went to Tumbler Ridge for answers and found out there was only just more questions.
Hopefully she will begin to move on with her life.
What she.really needs to do is to be the author of her own story, she has been trained as a journalist and Maria's paper has a weekly news magazine, Jehane should right a three part story of her life.
Part one is Before:Tumbler Ridge and it is about the life she lead in Canada and how her family was slowly coming apart with deaths and how her Aunt Olga was not coping when the NKVD attacked, it should end with her mother sending her out to safety and then waking up in a hospital in Montreal and seeing Kat for the first time.
Part two is After:Pankow and it is about her leading as normal a life as possible, and how she helped the female POWS because she knew how it was tearing Kat up, it should have stories about Kat's friends, how Marcella became the mother she needed, The Sisterhood of the Karambit, and teaching the Crown Prince to say "Please" and "Thank You" because she does not want what happened to her family to happen to him.
Part three is Now: and that is where I draw a blank.
 
Part 53, Chapter 729
Chapter Seven Hundred Twenty-Nine


19th April 1949

Kimberly, South Africa

It was about keeping the prisoner off balance. Hans had watched over the last day as Bas Botha had been unable to tell if anything was being done of his own volition or if he was playing into a diabolical scheme that his captors had cooked up. The truth was that they weren’t interested in getting intelligence that affected what went on in the field. Instead they wanted to understand the internal politics of the Boers. No group was monolithic, there had to be different factions that wanted different things. In this civil war against the South African Government they were united by a common enemy currently. But how long could that last? Hans saw it that he needed to find the fault lines so that they could be exploited.

“Feeling better?” Hans asked Bas as he entered the cell. At least the twitching had stopped.

Bas just stared at him banefully from the bed that was bolted to the floor. It was just a welded steel frame with a straw mattress on it. Making weapons from it could only be done with great difficulty by design.

“I’m just trying to get through this current assignment” Hans said, “It was either this or being the officer in charge of training and education. You have any idea what that means in the field? It means that you’re the one who gets to show the VD and trench foot awareness films. That makes you real popular in the mess, let me tell you.”

Bas rolled over and was facing the wall. “Leave me alone” He said.

“You’re not the only one not thrilled to be here” Hans said, “Helene tells me that my children are growing up fast, without me. The last time I was home…”

“I don’t care” Bas said.

“Spoken like a man who has never had anything” Hans replied, “That’s the sort of thing my Uncle Klaus told me, and I didn’t get it, now I do.”

“Whatever” Bas said, and he refused to say anything else.

“Have it your way” Hans said to the back of his prisoner, “Just having you in here and not out there is a win for me.”

With that Hans left the cell. It had been a painstaking process, but the goal was to leave Bas Botha feeling like he was totally irrelevant to the wider world. Being a man in his mid-twenties who had led men in combat, that would grate on Bas like few other things could. He would have been defiant in the face of Hans letting Jost thrash him but to be removed from the equation entirely…

Hans figured that tomorrow, Bas would start running his mouth to prove him wrong.


Berlin

Gia had gone home, or at least tried to. That was the conclusion that was reached around the palace. Kat had spent the last several days in quiet frustration after Kira had ordered her to return to Berlin after she’d discovered that two young women matching Gia and Asia’s description had been spotted boarding a flight to New York in Paris. It was obvious where Gia had been going after that, there were only a couple places she could go. Instead of having Kat chase Gia all the way to British Columbia and creating an unpleasant scene, Kira had sent a telegram to Malcolm Blackwood asking him to handle the matter with discretion.

Now they’d gotten a telegram back saying that Gia had been found at her family’s house near Tumbler Ridge and would be on her way home when arrangements could be made. As angry as Kat was at Gia for running off she understood that Gia would have discovered that there was nothing left there for her except an empty house and traumatic memories.

“When Gia returns from Canada she’s going to move to shield her friend Asia by taking the entire blame for what happened” Kat said, Kat suspected that her Aunt Marcella had also played a role but had been unable to prove it. Gia would have needed travel documents and a ready supply of money to do what she had done. Marcella would have been someone she would have trusted implicitly and was one of the few people in Berlin who Kat couldn’t lean on for information.

“I would expect nothing less” Kira said, “I figure that you can take care of that. Please remember that Fraulein Lawniczak was loyal to Gianna far beyond what she was obligated to. That shouldn’t be punished.”

“What about Gia?” Kat asked.

Kira sighed in exasperation, this was just a dress rehearsal for what was coming when her own daughters got older. Something she was not looking forward to. “Gianna is a grown adult even if she doesn’t always act like it” Kira said, “She needs to understand that responsibilities come as well as privileges not only from her age but also her station in life.”

“What do you have in mind?”

“She ran away because she wanted to know who she is, to find herself” Kira replied, “Perhaps we should give her exactly what she wants. To learn the full extent of her personal history and origins.”

Kat wasn’t sure what Kira had in mind, but she had a feeling that whatever it was, it fell into the category of always being careful what you asked for because you might get it. This also struck Kat as being perfectly in keeping with everything she knew about royalty. They would give with one hand and take with the other.
 
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Kira sighed in exasperation, this was just a dress rehearsal for what was coming when her own daughters got older. Something she was not looking forward to. “Gianna is a grown adult even if she doesn’t always act like it” Kira said, “She needs to understand that responsibilities come as well as privileges not only from her age but also her station in life.”

“What do you have in mind?”

“She ran away because she wanted to know who she is, to find herself” Kira replied, “Perhaps we should give her exactly what she wants. To learn the full extent of her personal history and origins.”

Kat wasn’t sure what Kira had in mind, but she had a feeling that whatever it was, it fell into the category of always being careful what you asked for because you might get it. This also struck Kat as being perfectly in keeping with everything she knew about royalty. They would give with one hand and take with the other.

Why i fell this is at the same time more disturbing that is sound but at the same time no so bad?
 

Md139115

Banned
I seem to recall there being some private letter concerning Jehane that went to the British monarchy back when she was rescued. I went looking through the chapters around that, and couldn’t find anything. Am I imagining things?
 
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