Author: Nancylu92 PM
A Czech family travels to the General government in the beginning of WWII. The oldest son, Janek Jack , feels no need to come to Krakow, but he meets a beautiful Polish boy Ralph who he is immediately drawn to. However, the war makes it harder for them to love each other, as both dream of escaping from their home in Poland. Drama to come, rated for safety. East Europe LotF AU.Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Adventure - Ralph & Jack M. - Chapters: 6 - Words: 10,031 - Reviews: 4 - Favs: 3 - Follows: 1 - Updated: 06-28-12 - Published: 06-17-12 - id: 8226784
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Janek stood up, collecting the letter and placing it on top of some washrags inside his bag, and clicked the metal buckle shut. Sami and Erik rushed over, looking over Janek's shoulders to peer at the bag.
"You write to?"
'Finishing each other's sentences… Absolutely insane…' Janek sighed, and waved them off. "Wrote to a classmate of mine from school. His name is Maurice. Lives in France, in the Pyrenees."
The twins began jumping up and down excitedly. "Maurice? Like, Maurice Gerard Maurice? That one?"
"Oh yeah, him. He was in the St. John's choir."
"He lived in an apartment right across from ours! Really nice guy; even when we made lots of noise, he and his mom never complained a bit!" Sami tapped his chin, his lips morphing into a variety of expressions, causing Janek to snigger. "Oh yeah… We visited his apartment room before, but only he and his mom lived there. What was the deal?"
Janek thought of Maurice, and the others, causing something to tug at his heart and memories painfully. "Oh. Maurice's other family stayed in France, while he and his mom stayed in England, so Maurice could go to school there. He also wanted to join the French army, like his older brother, but he was needed at his home. He's probably already on his way to his house with his mom, if not already there."
"—Makes more sense now."
Erik turned to Ralph, who had been listening to their conversation the entire time. "Ralph, what ever happened to Christen?"
"Oh, Christen? He returned to Denmark at the start of the war, before our school was torn down. He had to go help his parents and aunt in their confectionery shop. He sent me a letter recently, saying that he lost a lot of weight, since there wasn't a lot of food." Ralph pulled out a worn, folded paper from deep inside the desk. He unfolded it, and looked it over with a sad smile. "He also said that his hair finally turned a shade of blonde, if not 'Ralph's straw blonde.'"
"Like the rest of his family, eh?" Sami slung one arm over his brother, who pushed it off. He pouted at Erik, but didn't try to fight back. "But seriously Ralph, your hair is something that Himmler would pay you all of Germany's money for. How did it get so… blonde?" Sami fingered his own golden brown hair.
Ralph wore a horrified look on his face for a fraction of a second, before grinning. "It's from my mom, who got it from my grandma, who's Lithuanian."
Janek thought he saw something on Ralph's expression, but he shrugged it off. After all, what did Ralph fear in his blonde hair?
"But Ralph, what –"
"—About your Tata?"
Ralph scratched the top of his head. "Tata is half Polish, one fourth Croatian, and one fourth Hungarian, from Grandma."
"So that must be why your father's hair is darker. His face structure looks like the Yugoslavians…"
They all stared at Janek, who had not spoken at all since Sami and Erik mentioned Christen.
Ralph smiled at the tall red head. "You have a very keen eye, Janek. Do you want to be an artist one day?"
Janek blushed, and shook his head from side to side quickly. "N-no! I personally want to be a performer or a professional singer or musician, but then again, the thought of being an artist isn't so bad either…"
Ralph lit up, and grabbed his arm suddenly, causing the latter's blush to deepen even more, to a shade of rich crimson. "Have you ever heard of Carmelo Federico di Costello?"
"Now that I think about it, I might have… Isn't he the guy from Switzerland married to a Polish woman named Natalia?"
Ralph beamed with pride. "He's my brother-in-law, and Natalia is my other older sister."
"…Ralph, isn't Natalia the only sibling older than you?"
Ralph froze in his place, as still as a statue. He nodded statically, a terrified look on his face, the same as the one when Sami mentioned the origins of the boy's light hair.
"O-of course! How silly of me to forget that! Hahaha!"
"Whatever you say, Ralph… Whatever you say…"
Ralph looked down at his leather shoes, and quietly shuffled to the back of the shop, not wanting to see his friends for the rest of the day; preferably, the rest of his life.
"Tata needs me in the back…"
Understanding the message, Sami and Erik walked out of the shop solemnly, back to their own home. Janek, who was left dumb as a doorknob, called out.
"Hey, if you need to talk to me about anything, Ralph, I'd be glad to!"
With that, he ran out of the shop to take the letter to the postman, just in time to miss Ralph's piercing gaze.
'How? Why can he read my emotions so easily?'
The red head ran as fast as he could to the postman. He was probably annoying a lot of people, late to return to his home, but he didn't care. All he wanted to was to send this letter to Maurice.
"Excuse me? Pan?" He approached closer to the man, who turned around kindly. "Could you please make sure this gets sent?"
The man nodded politely, smiling. "Of course son, I'll make sure."
He couldn't express his joy in anything but a small and curt nod. He was used to showing no emotion to anybody. As long as that letter made it to France, he couldn't care if the world was about to blow up at that minute. But then again, if the world blew up, Maurice wouldn't get the letter.
3 Rue de Sucre
August 24, 1940
By the time the letter reached France, a week had passed. It was five in the morning, and Maurice Gerard had just woken up, and was about to go into the town square to get ingredients for breakfast, and new farm supplies. He ran a hand through his jet-black hair, and looked in the mirror for a brief moment, before brushing his teeth, putting on good clothes, and heading out the door.
"Monsieur Gerard?" The postman was walking right up his house's street just as he was going into town.
"Oui?" Maurice noticed the letter's address, and lit up. He took it graciously, as he bowed. "Merci beaucoup, Monsieur! I have not received a letter in ages!"
The postman smiled, as he walked to the next house.
"Breakfast can wait. This needs to be read." He sat down on the dirt road then and there, and tore open the envelope. As he read, a very not amused look appeared on his face.
"How dare he call me a mountain hickey? My family is very well off compared to other French people!" He got up, and swung the door open, and slamming it closed as he trudged upstairs to write a letter back.
3 Rue de Sucre
I would've been happy to read this, but seeing as you truly don't appreciate this, I will be mercilessly annoying as well.
Why would you call me a bloody mountain hickey? What did the teachers teach you, anyways? Whatever. The soldiers have invaded the upper part of France, but for now, my family and I are safe, isolated deep in the mountains. I have received a letter from Simon, who currently lives in Nice, France, near my vacation home. He says the climate is very nice, but as it borders Italy, both he and I are very nervous. Roger's in Leeds. And will do.
Janek, are you insane? You cannot insult the Fuhrer! It is much too dangerous in these times. Have you learned nothing from this war so far, or not? Seeing the address, I am assuming that you've made it to Poland without many issues.
I'm very happy that you like Krakow. The subject of escape is too young for now. The war has just started, and I truly hope the Americains will help us, for the factories are advanced, and it is too far from Germany to be taken over. Do NOT, under any circumstances, be so reckless with the letter content in your next letter. I heard the postal system will be taken over by the Nazis, so who knows if they will track you down by the address!
I actually never considered you to like men, Janek, but seeing your description, my mind has been changed significantly. Congratulations! Five siblings? Damn, I commend his courage and perseverance.
Violette is too young to be so much trouble. She is only 7, and I don't need to do much to get her to obey Mother or Father's orders. Ruze isn't so bad, my ami.
Of course I knew this, much to my chagrin that you should think so! Which do you think is better: General Government, or the Poland of the Red Army? I believe that Allied Poland is better.
Ah yes, Denmark, the model protectorate of the Reich, the kindest people, and the most attractive breeding stock. Sooner or later, that title will be stripped, so Switzerland's the better choice for an escape, but much more dangerous. I hope that the 1000-year-Reich won't exist either.
You know I've always been religious, but since this war started, I never thought of reading my bible once. Now, I shall turn to it once more for comfort. Godspeed to you as well, my friend, and may God have mercy on you and your family for eternity.
As our choir used to always sing, Kyrie eleison,
Maurice went outside once more, and as he walked to the post shop, he wondered. Was he always this cheesy and concerned about the world in the past, or did war do this to people?