Summary: Shosanna couldn't bring herself to hate the man who wore her enemy's colours. Instead, she could only love him. My rewriting of the ending of the film, beginning with the scene in the cinema's projection room. NON-CANON.
Note: This is not meant to be a canon, serious story. If you are expecting one, then you will be disappointed. I like happy endings, and I ship these two characters in a fictional (i.e. OOC, yes, I know I'm a bit mental) sense, which is a major reason for the writing of this FF.
A few words of warning: Before you read this story, I recommend that you watch Inglourious Basterds in its entirety. Firstly, because it is the most awesome film ever, and secondly, so you understand what's going on in this fan fiction.
Pairing: Shosanna Dreyfus and Fredrick Zoller. I thought Mélanie Laurent and Daniel Brühl (the actors portraying them) had excellent chemistry, and that the camera loves them.
Additional notes: I'm not fluent in French, so I've written this in English. Just pretend that the dialogue is in French, if you can.
The misspelling of the last word of this story's title is deliberate.
Disclaimer: I don't own 'Inglourious Basterds'.
Fredrick and Shosanna Fourever
"Fredrick, you can't come in here." Shosanna felt like she was repeating herself for the hundreth time, and she glared at Fredrick through the crack in the door of the projection room.
"Why not? You must be quite lonely in this cramped, dark room," Fredrick replied. He smiled, and Shosanna felt her heart melt, against her better judgement. The last thing that should be happening right now, was for her to have feelings for this young man, who fought on her enemy's side. But she remembered all the kindness he had shown her, when all she gave him in return was rejection. This German gentleman would not give up easily, that was for sure. She sighed, and opened up the door fully to let him into the room.
"See, that wasn't so difficult," Fredrick said, retaining that infectious grin. That smile could get annoying someday.
"You are infuriating." Shosanna couldn't get enough conviction into her voice, and she returned his smile.
"By the way," she continued, "You should lock the door. We don't want anyone to listen in on us, do we?"
Fredrick turned around and locked the door. As he did so, Shosanna began to reach for her purse, with the small gun she had hidden there. She knew immediately that she didn't have the heart to shoot him, this man who seemed to care for her, and her hand dropped to her side.
Gunshots were echoed through the cinema speakers, accompanied by the screams of dying Allied soldiers. The in-film Fredrick triumphantly pull off shot after shot, as he stood his ground in the 'bird's nest'.
"You are really quite the hero. You should go back inside. This is your night." Shosanna kept her voice level while her insides were churning, making herself proud.
"I don't feel like a hero. Don't tell anyone else this, but I want this war to end. There have been too many deaths. So many young men like me have died, on both sides. It is quite cruel, what the human race is capable of inflicting upon itself. I don't like to hear the sounds of dying men. That's why I don't enjoy this part of the film at all." His face twisted in pain, as he recalled his one man victory which didn't seem like a victory to him.
Shosanna felt her heartstrings tear. Once again, against her better judgement, she cast aside her thoughts of revenge on the regime that had stolen her family from her, and wanted to offer Fredrick comfort. There was certainly more to Herr Zoller than met the eye. Underneath his handsomeness and charm, was a soul in torment. He felt like Shosanna was the only one who could understand what he was going through, somehow. Shosanna and Fredrick both felt like they shared a special connection, though neither of them could place their finger on what that connection was.
She offered him her hand, which he took gratefully. "When you were in the 'bird's nest', what was it like?" she asked, quietly.
"It was terrible. All I could think about was my own survival. What I would I would have given, to not have to kill other men to survive, like crushing ants underfoot!"
"You only did what was necessary..."
"That doesn't make it any easier to bear!" He pointed at his in-film self, as the battle continued. "That is not reality at all. I am no hero. I feel horrible for what I have done. But, does Hitler, Goering or Goebbels care about how I feel? No! All they care about is their propoganda, and making the German people applaud their hero!" Hot, angry tears formed, and rolled down his cheeks.
Shosanna wrapped her arms around him, feeling the warmth of his strong frame. "I'm sorry," was all that she managed to say, and she offered him his handkerchief.
"I'm the one who is sorry, crying like a baby on my special night," Fredrick replied, bitterly. He accepted the handkerchief, and wiped his face. Shosanna vowed that she would never wash the hankie again.
"If it means anything, I care about how you feel."
"Let's talk about something else." They paused for a moment, and Fredrick consumed himself in Shosanna's perfume.
"If I may say so, you look beautiful, madamoiselle." He smiled his perfect smile, again.
"Merci. You look rather handsome tonight, if I may so, monsieur."
Their faces were just inches from each other. Their lips collided, in an explosion like the firing of a Howitzer. They kissed for what seemed like an eternity, and they didn't want it to end.
When they finally parted, Shosanna said softly, "My entire family died four years ago. I've felt so lonely since then, up until now."
"I'm sorry," Fredrick said. "How did they die?"
As if on cue, the film stopped, and the screen was replaced by Shosanna's face. The audience gasped in confusion.
"You will all pay, Nazis, for what you have done to my family and I," her on-screen self thundered. "You will burn in hell!" On-screen Shosanna laughed, as the actual screen burst into flames.
Shosanna immediately felt regret for her actions, as she realised that there was still some good left in her world, because Fredrick was in it, after she felt there was only evil surrounding her.
Fredrick looked at the screen, then Shosanna in shock. "What have you done?!" he demanded, grabbing her by the shoulders and pinning her to the wall.
Her words came in a deluge. "I was going to tell you...Colonel Landa was the man who ordered the killing of my family. I am a Jew! I have hated Germans ever since, and have waited for tonight for my revenge. But I don't feel hate towards you, Fredrick. You are kind and unselfish, and I love you. I should have told you sooner."
Fredrick softened his face. There was screaming down below, as the flames engulfed the room, audience stampeded towards the rear doors.
"The doors are barred," Shosanna said, her eyes going wide. "I can't go through with this. I'm not a murderer." She broke Fredrick's grip on her, and rushed to the door of the projector room, unlocking it. Fredrick chased after her, and caught her by the wrist as they descended the stairs.
"Let go of me!" Shosanna screamed.
"No, Shosanna listen to me!" Fredrick said urgently. "You can't release those people. They know you are responsible for the fire, and they won't hesitate to kill you."
"Then what can I do?"
"Do nothing. Leave with me, now. Those people in there are evil. If they die, it can help to bring about the end of the war."
"But they are your people..."
"No, they are not!" Shosanna was taken aback by his ferocity.
"Okay. Okay, let's go." They held hands and ran out of the building, leaving the sounds of screaming, and what they thought sounded like machine gun shots, behind them.
"I didn't know your heart was so full of hatred," Fredrick gasped as they ran along the street.
"I felt like the whole world was against me, but I know now that things are different, since you came into my life, Fredrick."
"You said that you love me. I love you too, Shosanna. Even after what you have done, it doesn't matter, because I want to spend the rest of my life with you. Would you like that?"
"Oui," Shosanna replied, her heart full of joy that she had found happiness and love, when once it only held anger.
"Could you really love me, knowing that I'm a Jew?" Shosanna asked, as she realised the reality of the situation.
"I don't care what you are. I will love you, no matter what," Fredrick said passionately, and he squeezed her hand comfortingly as they increased their pace. They were ten blocks away from the cinema by then.
It was then that they heard the cinema explode spectacularly, after the dynamite taken in by the Basterds ignited. But Fredrick and Shosanna never looked back.
They escaped Paris and settled in a quiet part of France. They created new identities for themselves, and their wedding day was the happiest day of their lives. With the deaths of Hitler, Goering and Goebbels, the German war machine collapsed, and the war was soon brought to an end after the Allies invaded Berlin. In former Nazi occupied France, Fredrick and Shosanna lived happily ever after.
Even though the final scene between Fredrick and Shosanna was dramatic and it worked, I felt obliged to give them an alternate, fairy tale ending. Please comment.