19 December 2010 @ 03:21 pm
King For A Day, part 9/?  
Title: King For A Day, part 9/?
Character(s)/Pairing(s): Shosanna/Fredrick, mentions of the Zoller family.
Rating: NC-17
Word count: 12,885
Summary: He will always be the German War Hero.
Notes: Contains references to the script.

The story so far: | information/cast post | 01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06 | 07 | 08 | 09 | 10 |

Fredrick had made it to their room before she did.

As she opened the door to their quarters, Shosanna found him sitting on the bed in the dark and muttering German under his breath. She reached for the light switch located by the doorway, bathing the room in a warm, amber glow.

Shosanna could see that Fredrick sat hunched over, wringing his hands. The sleeves of his shirt were unbuttoned and shoved up past his elbows, with his jacket laying rumpled at his feet. On the floor was their suitcase, which had obviously been thrown into the wall. It now laid open, its contents scattered about the floor; nestled in the mess was the Luger. Nearby was his cap; his hair was already a disheveled mess from putting his hands through it, as he was prone to do.

Yet another detail about him she had memorized.

Without a word, she went to him; offering a more physical comfort, Shosanna ran a hand through his hair. Straightaway, Fredrick reached up, wanting to take her hand in his. However, his sudden movement startled her, causing her to flinch and him to grab ahold of her wrist; the same wrist he had injured in the projection booth. It was taken as an aggressive gesture.

They both froze, their eyes on each other. Shosanna wanted to comfort Fredrick, to be there for him, but this was an unfamiliar side to him she was not entirely prepared to handle. Both were aware of this.

He looked away from her, his hand loosening its grasp and falling away as she stepped back from him.

Fredrick loved her, that she knew; it was in the way that he touched her, held her, looked at her. He whispered it to her in German as they lay together, declared it to her in French when they made love.

Fredrick Zoller loved Shosanna Dreyfus, it was never in doubt.

Yet now, even as she watched him fall to pieces, a part of her screamed at her to leave, to turn away and not look back. It was the part of her that fought for survival beneath the floorboards of the farmhouse, the part of her that could so easily conjure up a plan to burn down a cinema, the part of her that ordered her to take hold of that pistol and take aim at his back. That seething wound that could never fully heal.

But she could not; she knew that.

She loved Fredrick, even though she couldn't bring herself to say the words just yet, even though she could have very well pulled that trigger.

In spite of her fearfulness and her hesitation, she had to stay. She wanted to.

She loved him and he loved her.

That should've been enough, but it couldn't, no matter how much both of them wanted it to be. There was more the two of them had to face, to overcome; love alone wasn't enough.

But no matter how uncomfortable she felt in that moment, Shosanna knew that she had to let Fredrick have this; to have her patience, and hopefully, her understanding.

And so she stood; watching, waiting, as he sat on the edge of the bed, staring straight ahead, worrying his hands.

Finally, after a prolonged silence, Fredrick spoke. His voice was small,

"King of Peace."

Her eyes on him, Shosanna said nothing.

He lowered his eyes to his hands.

"My name," he elucidated, "means King of Peace. Fredrick: King of Peace."

He then turned his head to face her. He seemed so defeated, giving a sad laugh and a shrug,

"It's all so laughable, isn't it?"

Breathing in shakily, Fredrick directed his eyes to the wall in front of him.

"I just don't know, Shosanna," he exhaled roughly, "I just don't know anymore. Maybe I never did."

He then raised his hand, clamping it over his mouth and squeezing his eyes shut. He was breaking.

His body shuddered.

Struggling to keep composed, Fredrick straightened, his features hardening. Grasping at his hands, his brow furrowed as he recalled a not too distant memory; his voice taking on an edge,

"It was shortly after I arrived in Paris, and I had received a hero's welcome. I was personally seen to by Goebbels himself. As one of the many privileges he bestowed upon me, I was immediately accommodated with a suite in a prestigious hotel that had been occupied by our forces. It was all so lavish, so extravagant. "

Fredrick snorted at the thought of it.

"I was not used to such luxury, to such prestige. Here I am, in the midst of it all, in an unfamiliar place in an unfamiliar country surrounded by unfamiliar people. I had already done my part for my country and his film. All I wanted, more than anything, was to go home…"

His voice trailed off, and he closed his eyes. Breathing deeply, he then opened them as he brought himself to speak, his voice growing harder.

"…I had felt that before; I always did, but somehow, then and there, it seemed worse. I found myself overcome with this anger, this loneliness. I'm standing there, in this room - I have no idea what to do with any of it, with myself - and I look down at this chair in front of me, against the wall."

Giving pause for the briefest of moments, he swallowed before taking in a breath and forcing himself to continue,

"It was this plush, blue chair, with an ornate, stitched design in the fabric of it. It looked like the kind of chair that could just swallow you whole. So, I bent over it, I took hold of it by the armrests - "

Fredrick now held his hands out in front of himself, gesticulating along with the the story.

" - I lifted it up, and then brought it back down, against the wall. It broke apart in my hands, just like that. It was so loud, so sudden."

He withdrew into himself, his voice now quieter. Shosanna could see that he was faintly shaking.

"I couldn't believe it. I just stood there in a daze, looking at what I had done. The bellboy who had helped me get settled, he was the one who came running first. He stood there, in the doorway, flanked by a couple other enlisted men."

Running a hand through his hair, his voice took on a tone of disbelief,

"They were terrified of me, I could see that; they were outright terrified of me. Yet, they were also in awe."

Fredrick shook his head in amazement at it all.

He then went silent for a time, with his eyes drawn to his fretting hands. Shosanna watched; waited. For that time being, the two felt as if they were strangers. And for a stifling moment, they were half terrified of each other, of what the other would do. She almost wanted them to leave before they suffocated under the weight of it; it lay on them like an intolerable heat. She was too afraid to suggest anything, to even clear her throat. Yet, as much as it pressed down on them, Shosanna did not want to upset the surface of the moment.

Mercifully, Fredrick was the one to break through it.

"There was a bookstore my second eldest sister, Elsa, worked in," he had softened now, his tone wistful, "it was run by this kindly old woman, Frau Vogt. Elsa never cared to work in Das Kino Haus as she did for that bookstore."

It was a jolting shift in conversation, but Shosanna welcomed it as his mouth now formed into a nearly imperceptible smile, which was clear in his voice.

"When I wasn't causing mischief in the theater, I was busy bothering her. Frau Vogt, a widow, kept to herself mostly, but she - unlike Elsa - didn't mind my presence there. She very quickly deduced that the best way to keep me in line was to keep me occupied with books. I read through every one I could get my hands on; my very favorite being one about Australian Aborigines."

Fredrick now perked up at the recollection. Though still wary, Shosanna relaxed, if only a little.

"I was so enthralled with it. Out of all of the folklore and fairytales, it was that book that I loved best; I even had my mum read parts of it to me at bedtime. What captured my imagination most was learning of the Walkabout, the Aboriginal rite of passage."

There was a change in his inflection. The more he spoke, the more enlivened he became.

"During adolescence, the males go on a journey into the wilderness, for as long as six months. In that time, they would trace the same paths as their ancestors. It's a solitary journey, only man and the outback. As strange as it sounds, I would dream of being able to do the same when I was old enough."

He looked up at Shosanna, his smile now obvious.

"I settled for exploring the land and woods around my house. Until, of course, my mum or Helga would call for me to come inside for dinner."

Fredrick paused, his eyes settling back to his hands. His voice took on a shyness.

"After mum died and father left us, I was even more determined."

There was now a palpable change in mood; a strangeness. It was so instantaneous that neither were able to adjust to it. Nearly dizzy, Shosanna could feel it bearing down on them. Every word from him, his every gesture drove the flag of Fredrick's reality deeper into her; marking her, claiming her. There was no turning away.

His smile was gone, hidden by a mask of stoicism.

"That's how I got through my enlistment, you know, by treating it as my own Walkabout. Sleeping in tents, huddled in trenches, surrounded by other terrified young men; I knew I could see it through as long as I stayed my course."

Exhaling sharply, Fredrick made an effort to steel himself, but the mask was slipping. He sounded almost faraway; unreadable.

"There's this Aboriginal belief, that to look into another's eyes and see terror is to see your death."

Shosanna noticeably tensed.

Fredrick took a quick gulp of breath and swallowed. He looked so weary, so frightened. He attempted to keep his calm, but his nerves were giving way, betraying him.

"Those others, Shosanna, it did not matter to me how they viewed me. They could never truly know me, so of what concern was it to me? But you, Shosanna…"

He could not bring himself to look at her, to even see how she was accepting this as he pressed on, speaking carefully, pronouncing every word with purpose.

"…that night, to see your face, to look into your eyes; I knew then. I knew that it was all over for me."

He could hear the movement of her body, the light treading of her feet on the carpet. A cold wave of panic washed over him, thinking that she was making her move to slip out the door. Instead, Shosanna closed the space separating her from the edge of the bed and sat next to him.

Fredrick made no move to touch her or to look at her. Though he very much wanted to, he did not want to do anything that could jeopardize this moment, to confuse the impulse that brought Shosanna to his side. He could feel her so close to him, feel her looking at him.

And then, she moved.

Leaning into his side, Shosanna laid her head on his shoulder.

Fredrick wanted to reach out to her, but he resisted. He knew better; knew that she meant more than one thing by her gesture. He was a German soldier - War Hero - whom she, a Jewish girl, had come to know due to fate. She would have killed him and herself, if not for something more; something she had yet to define. That something was specific and deliberate in her touch.

It always was.

Here, now, it was present. It was more than the mere laying down of her head against him, that Fredrick knew. There was a life - a flicker - in the force of her body. Shosanna was making certain not to lean too hard into him. She was touching Fredrick, yet holding back in a way that was calculated and calibrated; judging where and how to touch him.

It meant, for Fredrick, that Shosanna's decision to go to him held a measurement and risk. Her gesture was, for him, as intimate and important as the first time they had kissed; as meaningful and significant as when she first made love to him.

Shosanna wholly trusted him, and silently, simply, she had indicated that to him.

Moments passed.

Moment after moment, the two remained as they were, not a word passing between them.

Fredrick wanted to put his arm around her, but couldn't, as it would require Shosanna to lift her head, and he couldn't go without that contact, not even for a second. Reaching out, he laid his hand upon her thigh, just above her knee, carefully, and flatly. He did not want to close or curl his fingers, as he did not want to seem as though he were trying to take possession of her.

Fredrick took measured breaths, trying to block out the eruption of speculation and joy clouding his mind.

Yet again, Fredrick was trembling, and all because of Shosanna.

Lifting her head, she leaned away from him. He pulled his hand away, his body still quivering.

"There's so much I want to tell you, to ask you," he whispered, "but it's all so strange."

Fredrick turned his face to the window, looking out. Moving out and above them was a sliver of black and gray sky. He could feel his heart pounding all over, could hear the defeaning rush of blood as it surged through to his outermost parts: in the back of his throat, to the top of his skull, down in the pit of his stomach, and right between his legs. He knew then, that everything he and Shosanna shared could end there; their relationship, his life, even hers. For all that preceded it and for all that was to come, it could end and there could be nothing more and it wouldn't matter. Within this acknowledgment, Fredrick found such an honesty and artlessness - it was all so final, so determinate to him that it almost made sense, it almost seemed reasonable; it had done such justice to the chaotic emotions he felt that he almost could have admitted it to her aloud.

His body slumping, Fredrick now stared straight ahead. Shosanna sat perfectly straight, her hands in her lap. Though he wouldn't face her, she still looked to him; watching, waiting.

"I'm sorry, Shosanna."

Fredrick could see her hands out of the corner of his eye as they slid down and over her knees, her fingers bending and gripping. Her jaw tightened, with the rest of her body following suit. He could not hold back, and despite Shosanna's disquiet, she did not want him to.

Fredrick repeated himself, slowly, his voice straining,

"I am sorry, Shosanna."

Her eyes were now fixed on her wrist. She did not speak.

He cleared his throat. It was an intrusive, awkward sound.

"That night, Shosanna. I am sorry, I - "

Fredrick's voice dropped off as he came to a standstill.

It shouldn't have been like this. He very much wanted her, what they had.

He always did.

But now, he had begun to wonder if it were at all possible within their given circumstance. Yet Fredrick was all too terribly aware that what the two of them had lived through and shared with each other hung over their heads; had nested within them just as their traumas had. There was no going back for either of them, no matter how difficult this was for him; for her.

"I was raised Catholic. I haven't attended Mass in years; no confession, no ceremony. I suppose that's why I want to speak of these things, Shosanna."

Confession. The word stood out, bright and blinding in his consciousness; a negotiation, a show of good faith.

To be absolved.

Fredrick sat up, straightening his posture. His eyes were trained on his hands, which were clasped on his lap.

"My father abandoned us when I was thirteen. I never depended on him like I did with my mum and sisters. Regardless, I mourned his loss, however briefly. I still wonder about that, sometimes."

Fredrick grew quiet. Lips parted, he was fighting to find the words. His apprehension was apparent, as was a surprising imperativeness, which had Shosanna turn her head to face Fredrick and regard him with expectancy. Sensing her gaze, he took in a harshly audible breath.

He now spoke boldly, without restraint.

"I never went to him for anything; emotionally, or physically. Most sons are raised to admire their fathers, to bond with them. I never did. There was an ambivalence about him; he was neither comforting, nor was he harsh. The world was, to him, at any given moment, either grandiose - something to take hold of - or frigidly empty. More and more, he gravitated toward the latter. The older I get and the more I think about it, I realize that's not the man he truly was; not when my mum met him."

Shosanna returned her eyes to focus on her wrist, her mouth set in a thin line as she listened. Fredrick was unfaltering, speaking of things from someplace wounded within him; things he had never shared until now, with her.

"My father loved my mum, I knew that, I could see that; it was foreign to me, to see him look at her the way he did. He'd stare at me at times, stare at my face, to see if I resembled him, and there was this flicker in his eyes. It seemed to me, though, that it was his wish that I not come to know him. My sisters all knew him in some way, even before the damage took its toll on him, but not me. He would tell me things, teach me the kinds of lessons all children learn, of language, and rudimentary manners. He also taught me concepts that were far too monumental for me to grasp at the time, but for which I am now grateful for: of fairness and pity, of love and death. Yet he kept me at a distance, closing off his deepest self. That hurt my sisters more than me, as I did not know any different. The day he left, I had no idea of how to comfort Helga as she broke down."

Taking a moment to collect himself, he could see Shosanna watching him from the corner of her eye.

The timbre of his voice was now colored with an emotion, a desperation. Fredrick persevered; there was much he wanted - had - to say. He wanted very much for Shosanna to know, to understand.

"I knew that I never wanted to turn out like my father, the man I knew. I only had an idea of the man that he was, the man I decided I should be. The kind of man who could live honestly and openly. A man of compassion, of integrity. But I realized when I was in that bell tower, that I couldn't be that man. A man like that doesn't do what I had done. I was more like my father, the man I knew…"

His voice stilled.

A few moments passed.

"Fredrick," Shosanna whispered, her voice steady, but turned on its side. There was something in it he couldn't quite trace, and Fredrick almost didn't answer. But he couldn't stop. Like the momentum of the train, he had to move forward, even if they couldn't get past this.

"The Aboriginal death ritual dictates that the body must return to its Mother Country in order to be laid to rest. Those responsible for the deaths of others are met with banishment, even death. Those bodies - those men - were left where they lay. And there I was - a hero."

His voice was breaking with frustration.

"The way you looked at me… I knew then, that no matter where I went, be it Paris, Munich, or any other Goddamned place in the world, I could not escape what I had done. It would always be there, in the back of my mind. Heavy. Looming. Dark. Even if I could become that man, I could never escape it. I could run for a thousand years and never look back, but I'll never escape it."

They sat in silence, their eyes staring off into the shadows their bodies cast on the wall.

Fredrick listened to Shosanna breathe, noted the minute shiftings of her weight. She looked at him from the corners of her eyes.

He rid himself of the ceaseless, nervous internal chatter as she took in a breath. In the quiet of his mind, Fredrick could hear her calling for him, reaching out to him with an offer of comfort, with tears, with her body; something of herself she could readily give him. But Fredrick heard nothing of the sort. He knew it could not be as simple as that.

His voice was hushed, the sudden sound of it like being pulled into an alcove; an echo in the dark.

"Perhaps you should have killed me, Shosanna."

Fredrick turned his head to look at her now, fixing his every energy onto her profile. He watched her eyes as she blinked, her throat moving as she swallowed, her chest raising with breath.

He kept on.

"We would have died there, together. You'd have known my truth."

She released her breath, answering him bluntly.

"But you wouldn't have known mine."

Fredrick shrugged.

"Perhaps it would have been better that way."

Shosanna shook her head as if in an attempt to dislodge an image, her eyes still focused ahead of her.

"That couldn't be so, Fredrick."

She was right, he knew. He thought of Italy, of that bell tower. He thought of her running; bloodied and panicked. He thought of that night and their confrontation: he, broken and furious, she, determined and ready to end all the world's misery at the cost of herself; of him.

Fredrick reached out, touching her shoulder. Shosanna allowed herself no reaction. In his confused, emotional state, he nearly withdrew. She turned her head and her body beneath his hand, changing position slightly and now bringing them both directly face to face.

Eyes locking, they were silent again. It was larger, richer, familiar: there was no discomfort, no dead air within them. He could feel her closer now in every sense. His touch grew heavier, and though she had an impulse to turn away, she did not.

Fredrick felt something within him unfold, encompassing and warm. He spoke with an earnestness, a sadness that pierced through her.

"Je t'aime, Shosanna. Why must it be more complicated than that?"

Shosanna softened.

"Because," her voice fracturing, "nothing is ever so simple."

Fredrick looked to his hand on her shoulder, feeling the heat of her skin through the fabric of her blouse.

"None of this should have happened," he decided.

Her eyes went to his hand, then back to his face.

"Oui, but it did."

Fredrick brought his gaze back to hers.

"But if it didn't - "

Shosanna cut him off, her voice resolute.

"But it did. To try to think of life otherwise is an exercise in futility."

"You'd still have your family," he offered, "and I'd be with mine. We would be better off."

Fredrick was tearing at the tenderest parts of her, and he knew it.

"Would we?" she challenged him, voice firm.

"We'd be happier," he answered, half convincingly.

She refused to relent.

"We wouldn't know each other."

Fredrick was now struggling. Shosanna continued to press him.

"You only think you would be happier because you wouldn't have known otherwise."

They were silent again.

There was a way she was able to speak to him, a way which made him wonder if her long silences, pauses, and interludes were of astonishment, or if they were all contrivances as part of some kind of machination designed to make everything he said turn in on itself, like an echo. She never let him get away with a thing, not without a kind of introspection first. Never before had anyone made him feel more human, more important, and, at times when necessary, insignificant. He loved her for it.

"How can you be certain?" he blurted out.

She was brusque with her reply.

"Because. For the past four years, all I could allow myself to think about was how different my life would be otherwise. At times, I still do. But it's no way to live, Fredrick. It's a slow death."

Shosanna now paused. She was so exhausted from it all. But she understood; she understood how and why Fredrick felt as he did. What were old wounds and dead tissue for her were fresh and alive for him. The strain in her voice, in her body, was evident.

"We are alive. We have each other. Is that not enough?"

For a moment, he was stunned. It was.

"I'm sorry, Shosanna."

It was all he could bring himself to stay. Fredrick wanted to apologize and be forgiven for everything. He took in a deep breath that was broken in two by a sob. He turned away from her, his hand slipping from her shoulder and falling into his lap.

The thought of her coming under harm tore his heart in half. The thought of life without her was unfathomable and enough to drive him to tears. She was all he ever wanted, all he ever needed.

"I can't imagine my life without you, Shosanna," his voice now cracking and peeling around the edges, "it's not that I want my life back the way it was, not entirely. It's not that I want to completely forget, either. It's just that - "

Shosanna interrupted him, speaking definitively, knowingly.

"It's always there."

Fredrick did not respond; instead, he allowed for his silence so she could go on. He wanted to hear it from her.

There was a thoughtfulness to her words, a measure of care, even as her voice wavered.

"It haunts you. You can't articulate it. You just know that it's there; that it hurts. Sometimes it's dormant, but it's there, right below the surface. Other times, it's so sharp, so clear."

Fredrick brought himself to face her, his eyes burning into hers.

He was persistent, though his voice was meek.

"What do we do now, Shosanna?"

She gave him a soft smile.

"We live our lives, Fredrick."

And then, she reached out to him, laying her hand over his; one at a time, she curled her fingers around the heel of his hand until they touched the outer borders of his palm.

She held on and he held his breath. He felt the heat of her, and his heart now pounded so wildly that he was sure she could hear it. He thought of his blood, he thought of her blood; to be the stuff that powered through her, the constant circuit through every inch of her. The hunger he now felt was dizzying.

"Je t'aime," he said, the statement taking on a new weight neither had anticipated.

Within his declaration was all that was unspoken, unknown, understood, indeterminate, desired for, and dreaded between them; pulled together and assembled as if by some kind of emotional magnetism, it carried an awareness and tangibility. The atmosphere between them was now charged, as though he made some kind of effort to touch her, some kind of try for a physical intimacy. There was no option for either of the two but to come more and more forward with the other. It was almost supernatural, in a way, like seeing a spectre; it could fade into the light and dissipate, or it could take on a form and substance.

Shosanna fixed her eyes on Fredrick. He could see her sinking into her feelings. She knew she held the silence between them, a silence that sung in perfect pitch. She could hold onto it for an eternity and he would not break through it, nor would he question it. She held onto him, and he could feel her pulse, feel it reverberating through the very core of him.

Fredrick said nothing. He lowered his eyes for a moment, and then looked back at her.

"Je t'aime," he repeated faintly.

She leaned forward and into him, and he tugged at her until they fell back on the bed; almost clumsy, disjointed. Shosanna stretched out on top of Fredrick, her hands pulling at his shirt collar, her mouth centimeters above his.

"Hold me," she whispered.

They embraced, and he held her as tight as he could. He felt a sudden terror, enormous and imposing, unlike any he had ever felt before. Like the resounding blast from an explosion, it filled him, and just as suddenly, it left him shaken in its aftermath. His past, he could feel, receded from him; ebbing and waning. Like a burst balloon, it withered, falling away within him. Though it would always remain, it was, for now, dulled; deflated.

With his arms around her, together, they rolled over, laying side by side, facing each other.

Shosanna arched her back, pressing herself against him. Fredrick, bringing his hand up, stroked the side of her face and covered her mouth with his own, hungry and bruising. His kiss was voracious. He consumed her. Feeling the edge of his teeth on her lower lip, she deepened the kiss, accepting his tongue sliding into her mouth. Shosanna found Fredrick's absolute desire, his need for physical and emotional intimacy with her alarming, but not unwanted.

He loved her.

He loved her face, her large eyes, her sensuous mouth. He loved her small breasts, her flat stomach, and narrow hips. He loved her ass, her thighs, and the junction between them. He loved the feel of her, of being with her, of losing himself to her.

He loved her.

He loved her and it was all he knew; all he knew how to do, all he knew how to feel. If he were to be asked at all as to whether he found this entire ordeal to be worth it, he knew he could state that in the end, it was, and all because of her. He took on her past and her pain as his own. He loved her vulnerabilities, which he never loved more than when the two of them yielded to the touch of each other. The complete love and trust she held in her eyes for him in those moments was staggering.

He loved her.

He wanted to feel her.

He had to.

Suddenly, Shosanna's body went taut; her back straightened, snapping open a space between them. Fredrick dragged his mouth from hers with a harsh groan. She then rolled onto her back, staring up at the ceiling, her face set in concentration. He remained still, looking up at her. This didn't make sense to him, though he was, he knew, encouraged by their lack of thought.

"It's everything," she determined. "Everything's happening at once. Ending the war. Ending my relationship with Marcel. Leaving France. I've had to fight for everything. Everything's so exhausting."

Shosanna turned her head to Fredrick.

"And you, now. Out of everything, I'm able to handle you the least. Everything has happened all at once, and at almost the wrong time. Especially between you and me."

His brows knitting together, Fredrick reached a hand out between them, laying it palm flat. He supposed he should have been upset, but instead, he regarded her with curiosity. He almost wanted to smile.

"I know what I want, Shosanna; to be near you, to be with you. I'm learning now it's not so simple. I know that. I do. I might not act as though I don't know anything more than that, than what I want, but that's not so. I do. I do know more than that; much more."

His eyes went to her chest, watching as she took in a breath.

Shosanna sighed.

"Everything's so different now. It's all so strange and all I can wonder is how you're able to even reach me."

She turned her head away for a moment, returning her open gaze to the ceiling.

"It became habit, being Emmanuelle. I could stream back and forth between the two, but you caught on; knowing that someone, not Emmanuelle, was standing before you, thinking what couldn't be shared."

Shosanna now rolled over again, facing him, her fingertips brushing his hand. Fredrick's attention focused there briefly, before raising his eyes to hers.

"For a long time, I wanted to be the war hero. I wanted to be him just for a way to be; a way to have it make sense being there. Someone to occupy me, to make me less the person I was, who was in so much pain, and more like some other person. Someone unknown to me. I was on the outside, looking in, watching this man I never knew."

Fredrick paused. Shosanna was silent, her lips pressed tight. In the span of the evening and now into night, the two had heard more from the other than either could bear. But he couldn't stop; not now.

"Upon meeting you, I started to feel differently about myself. With you, I knew that I did not want to become him. I did not have to be him. That in spite of the pain and all those kinds of things that don't always make perfect sense, it was so much more beautiful that way; that way of feeling, that way of living."

Shosanna lowered her eyes, her fingertips now spreading out, but not quite touching him.

"It's strange, isn't it?"

Giving a nod of his head, Fredrick said nothing. With her eyes on his, her voice took on a seriousness.

"I thought of you."

He was taken aback at her words, at the near severity with which his body reacted. Warmth flooded him, pooling and settling into his lower abdomen. The significance of her words, the heaviness in her voice brought every part of him to attention. He almost could have felt ashamed of his arousal from her confession.

"I thought of you," Shosanna told him once more, "the entire time. I knew we'd both die that night and that my face would be the last you'd see. You'd know my truth…"

Her voice gave way with a small, soft click.

Their eyes meeting, she took his hand in hers and closed the space between them.

It was, perhaps, just that simple.

{continue to part 2 of 9}

se sentent: exhausted
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[identity profile] sweet-iolanthe.livejournal.com on December 21st, 2010 03:51 am (UTC)
"We would have died there, together. You'd have known my truth."

She released her breath, answering him bluntly.

"But you wouldn't have known mine."

thisss. yes. this.
http://suspiriorum.livejournal.com/: Carried away[identity profile] suspiriorum.livejournal.com on December 22nd, 2010 12:54 am (UTC)

As always, I love what QT with them and their story, including their end. However, I can't shake the desire for Fredrick to know Shosanna as who she truly was. I love that she learned his truth, but sometimes, I just want him to know hers. But, I suppose that's where I step in and fiddle about with things.
[identity profile] justchopstick.livejournal.com on January 11th, 2011 07:11 pm (UTC)
i am so glad i came across your stories! not only are they very well-written, but they are so in-character that i nearly forgot that this never happened in the movie. You really did the sho/fred pairing justice. I do have one suggestion though, you may reach a larger audience of readers/reviewers if you post you stories on fanfiction.net. I don't know if you've heard of that website but that's were most fanfic writters tend to post their stories. Either way, I hope you keep writing!
http://suspiriorum.livejournal.com/[identity profile] suspiriorum.livejournal.com on January 12th, 2011 10:18 am (UTC)
Thank you so much! I love Shosanna/Fredrick, so staying true to them, no matter the setting, is important to me; knowing that I'm able to do so means a lot to me.

I have considered posting to fanfiction.net before, I've just never gotten around to doing it yet. I really should, though.

Oh, I definitely will! I started part 10 of KFAD along with another Sho/Fred fic, and I have a couple of other ideas I'll eventually write, too.
[identity profile] justchopstick.livejournal.com on January 12th, 2011 01:22 pm (UTC)
Awesome! And it'd be great for you post on fanfic if you ever get around to it as the section for Shosanna/Fredrick on ff.net is rather small.

I can't wait for the next instalment of KFAD :)
http://suspiriorum.livejournal.com/[identity profile] suspiriorum.livejournal.com on January 13th, 2011 01:12 am (UTC)
I just registered, so I'm going to start uploading KFAD and other fic. It sort of amazes me that there are actually a lot of Shosanna/Fredrick fans out there, but in comparison, those who like to cram Sho with other characters are just louder about it. I've lost count of how many fans who have told me they feel guilty for loving Sho/Fred (even though they're Tarantino approved).

Part 10 of KFAD will hopefully get finished and posted at some point soon. I take my time with writing, so sometimes updates can take a while, but KFAD will be finished this year.
[identity profile] justchopstick.livejournal.com on January 13th, 2011 01:46 am (UTC)
I don`t really mind other pairings (everyone should be able to like what they want) but I tend to dislike those that get in the way of my favorites. I`m not completely sure why they`d feel guilty for loving Sho/Fred- I don`t aha.

It`s great that you take time on your fics. It`s better to go slow and make sure you get everything the way you want it than to pump out something quickly that may not be of the best quality IMO.

Also, I have to say I enjoyed your analyzation of the projection booth scene. I`m so glad someone else noticed the contrast in the colors of their clothes.
http://suspiriorum.livejournal.com/: The difference between us[identity profile] suspiriorum.livejournal.com on January 13th, 2011 02:41 am (UTC)
I'm the same; though I've never been too wrapped up with pairings, when it comes the ones that are my absolute favorites, I can't tolerate them with anyone else. I think it mainly has to do with the fact that he's a German and she's Jewish. And because he's a soldier, he's automatically labeled a Nazi. The fact that Quentin loves them is enough for me to not be bothered. Straight him his mouth, Shosanna and Fredrick are the tragic lovers of the film.

Exactly! I hadn't written in years until writing Sho/Fred fic, so I want it to be as well-written as it can be (and, as an added bonus, all of this has helped me get into writing my own original work).

Thank you! The color contrast seems so obvious, doesn't it? It both amazed and frustrated me as to how overlooked that scene is in terms of meaning. It's more than just the death of Shosanna, it's the consummation of her relationship with Fredrick and when we see how fragile and human they truly are. I enjoy the contrast of that scene with the following one with Omar and Donny; it further shows how separate Shosanna and Fredrick are from the rest of the war and the storyline. I could go on about it forever, really.
[identity profile] justchopstick.livejournal.com on January 13th, 2011 03:02 am (UTC)
Same, it`s hard for me to think of Shosanna with Landa or something of the sort. I suppose the only reason someone would have to feel guilty about liking them together is that a number of the fans of Inglourious Basterds seem to have written Fredrick off as a psycho Nazi.

As a friend of mine said, "Fanfic is like training wheels for writing. You get to practice writing skills by coming up with alternative storylines for your favorite stories", and that`s the way I like to think of it.

You`re welcome! And yes it is. I didn`t really notice it the first time I saw the movie, but as I went back and re-watched it, I started to see the meaning behind a couple of the things that had happened. I didn`t go as in depth as you did with your analyzation, but I definitely had ideas about the symbolism shown. And yes, the contrast is great. It`s almost like the projection booth scene was so serious and then boom! you`re back with Omar and Donny.
http://suspiriorum.livejournal.com/[identity profile] suspiriorum.livejournal.com on January 13th, 2011 04:27 am (UTC)
Landa murdered her family and Hellstrom clearly couldn't speak French and forced her into a car. Yeah, she doesn't belong with either of them (and Quentin threw most of Marcel's role/relationship out after Melanie and Daniel auditioned together). I love and respect Shosanna, so to put her with anyone else but Fredrick doesn't make sense. After everything she lived through, she deserved her revenge and some kind of happiness, and though it would've taken work, she could have had that with him.

That's an excellent way to think of fan fiction. Writing fic has helped me rediscover how much I really love to write. It was intimidating at first, but once I got into it, I couldn't believe how I went without writing for so long.

It's such a powerful scene that it overwhelmed the first couple times I had watched the film. There are still little things that slipped by me, such as how Shosanna is barefoot with him. QT uses bare feet as other directors use nudity; women in his films are bare foot when they're particularly vulnerable, powerful, or sexual. Her being barefoot with Fredrick is like being nude with him, and she's the only man we see her with like that (in contrast to her bare foot and terrified in the beginning). I am thankful for the film cutting to Omar and Donny after all of that, as it provides a much needed emotional break for me.
[identity profile] justchopstick.livejournal.com on January 13th, 2011 01:43 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I think QT intended for them to somewhat end up together at the end so it really doesn't make sense to put her with anyone else. But like with any fandom, there's shipping and some weird pairings are probably going to be generated.

It is haha. Also, fan fiction really tries the imagination. Every fandom's fan fiction kind of has its own clichés and it can be quite a challenge to come up with something new to write.
[identity profile] justchopstick.livejournal.com on January 13th, 2011 01:43 pm (UTC)
Wow, I would have never thought of the barefoot thing but that's a very good point. There's probably so many more things to analyze in that scene that we have yet to notice.
http://suspiriorum.livejournal.com/: [act: ML/DB] I'll be your mirror[identity profile] suspiriorum.livejournal.com on January 22nd, 2011 04:04 am (UTC)
Isn't it? It's no wonder there were quite a few bare feet in Death Proof (and Quentin owns up to that, too, by admitting that in order to make a grindhouse film, he had to basically be a dirty old man).

Something else I noticed was how Fredrick's eyes were squeezed shut when he first shoots her. Lashing out like that is a second nature for him, I imagine, and it happens so quickly; eyes shut, he fires off a few rounds, and that's it. When he's realized what he's done, he's completely anguished. I love that part, with how heartbroken Fredrick appears, and how violently his hand shakes as he hesitates to shoot her one last time (which, I believe at that point, was to put an end to her misery and not out of a violent urge to kill her).
http://suspiriorum.livejournal.com/[identity profile] suspiriorum.livejournal.com on January 15th, 2011 05:22 pm (UTC)
It's interesting, with the way QT talked about it in interviews, that Shosanna/Fredrick was accidental and spontaneous as he didn't expect Melanie and Daniel to get along so well (and after seeing Daniel in Good Bye Lenin!, QT was already pretty enamored with him and Fredrick). "Old time moviestar magic", is what he referred to their chemistry as being. After casting, he ended up making changes to the script to accomodate that.
Oh, definitely, fandom is fandom. I'm willing to bend canon as long as it's plausible, but I've found myself very inflexible with Shosanna/Fredrick.

I'm surprised with how much I've researched just to write KFAD. Even though the history is entirely AU, working out ways to keep it plausible have been interesting. I've also noticed how certain characters have been reworked in fanon, which is amusing. Of course, I've been doing a bit of that, with piecing together Fredrick's background from the script (it's gotten to the point where I get annoyed with fic if his seven sisters aren't mentioned or if he's placed in Berlin instead of Munich).
[identity profile] justchopstick.livejournal.com on January 15th, 2011 08:19 pm (UTC)
Well, who wouldn`t be enamored with Daniel after seeing "Good Bye Lenin!"? I`m glad he was though as I can`t imagine the movie without Shosanna and Fredrick`s relationship being the way it was.
Bending cannon, as long as it`s plausible like you said, can sometimes be helpful and add to some fanfictions I suppose.

I`m glad that you did research, even if it is AU history, some accuracy is still important. I also like that you included Fredrick`s sisters, even if they weren`t in the script. I don`t think a lot of people were aware that he was originally supposed to have sisters.
http://suspiriorum.livejournal.com/: [act: DB] Reflect what you are[identity profile] suspiriorum.livejournal.com on January 22nd, 2011 03:57 am (UTC)
It'd be hard not to. He had said before that he'd like to play an unlikable character, but even then, it'd be damn near impossible for me to not be enamored with Daniel. I don't know how much I'd truly enjoy IB if the Shosanna/Fredrick dynamic was different. Daniel made him even more innocent in the film, though I do like him the script, too (it was just little things here and there; he added a naivete and a certain maturity). Overall though, there was quite a bit changed from the script that I think helped improve the film and characters. I love Quentin, but his scripts usually are a bit outlandish in ways that get reined in once they're filmed; which is something I appreciate about him, in that he's willing to truly collaborate with his actors for the sake of the film.

I've always enjoyed research. I also really, really love details. I've noticed, with Fredrick's background in the script, that Quentin puts quite a bit of himself into certain characters of his (like with Clarence in True Romance). Fredrick is essentially the fictional German Audie Murphy, and so they share similar backgrounds, which Quentin shares to an extent, as well. It's probably another reason why Quentin has such a fondness for Fredrick.
[identity profile] justchopstick.livejournal.com on January 22nd, 2011 08:09 pm (UTC)
I don`t think IB would`ve been the same if they`d had any other angle on Shosanna/Fredrick. Had Daniel not played the role, Fredrick probably wouldn`t have the same innocent/naive air, which I find a very important factor in he and Shosanna`s relationship. It`s almost as if the fact that he is such a contradiction makes her despise him more, yet she can`t help but feel some regret towards hating him. I was unaware of the changes to the script until recently, but I enjoy the outcome, so I suppose it`s a good thing they made them.

I think almost any writer puts a bit of themselves (or someone they know) into the character, it makes them come alive and often gives the audience something to relate to. Sometimes, if the viewer can say "Oh! He reminds me of this person!" they might find themselves liking the character more. That might`ve been QT`s objective in making Fredrick similar to Audie Murphy, because for some people, Fredrick isn`t the most likable character.

(sorry my last post cut off here. LJ is weird sometimes.)
In Fredrick`s defense, you can`t really sit in a tower and kill 300 plus people without having some metal difficulties afterwards. I believe you said before he would`ve not had time (or not enough time) to recover once he returned. So yes, protecting himself against an attacker was second nature and obviously, he felt horrible about it after.
http://suspiriorum.livejournal.com/: [film: IB] Blame me I will wear it[identity profile] suspiriorum.livejournal.com on January 23rd, 2011 02:59 am (UTC)
Yes, exactly! It's how Quentin summed it up, of Fredrick unintentionally hurting Shosanna by being so kind to her, because it's not at all what she expected from someone she'd consider to be an enemy. It then fits so perfectly with the line in the script from the projection booth scene, wherein seeing him on screen, juxtaposed with him dying on the floor broke her heart. With Daniel playing Fredrick as he did, it made their end together something powerful and poignant; everything between them was anticipating that scene, and because of Daniel, it became the consummation scene Quentin proudly proclaims it to be. Fredrick got through to Shosanna in a way others couldn't, and without Daniel, it wouldn't have been that way. I think anyone else would've played the role as cocky, which is the obvious route most take it.
Basically, as Quentin has said, Daniel as Fredrick is perfect casting, and without him, the film would've turned out wrong.

Oh, definitely. Boring story time: Audie was one of my dad's heroes growing up because he was just a regular, likable kid, war hero status aside. After first watching IB, I talked to him about it, and after mentioning Fredrick, my dad immediately recognized the Audie Murphy parallels. He ended up liking Fredrick after seeing IB, because he could see what Quentin and Daniel were going for with the character.

And absolutely, I agree. Again, like Murphy, Fredrick clearly suffered from PTSD (Hugo was clearly suffering from the same, though he had a better outlet for it, one could say). And yes, suffering through what he had and then being thrust into fame like he was, Fredrick had no way to recover. Le Gamaar was his only refuge in Paris, and Shosanna was the one person he felt he could reach out to.
[identity profile] justchopstick.livejournal.com on January 23rd, 2011 03:55 am (UTC)
Man, I would`ve loved to have seen the interview were Quentin spoke about the Shosanna/Fredrick angle. Yes, almost anyone else probably would`ve gone about the role much differently (cocky, narcissistic, ect.), and it would`ve definitely not given the same emotion you feel. When you watch Fredrick repeatedly try and fail to court Shosanna and, after being rejected, see his hopeful try-again-tomorrow attitude, there`s something unsettling about it. Despite being open and seemingly harmless, she still won`t have him, and that`s when we start to feel for the character. We say, "Aww that`s so sweet! Why doesn`t she like him?" or something. If Fredrick had been played by someone who made the character cocky and arrogant, we probably would write him off as a jerk and be done with it.

Yay for (not so) boring stories! Yes, I think that`s exactly what Quentin was going for and it`s good too see it in action.

It was terrible bad luck on Fredrick`s part that the only real person he probably could`ve reached out to never would`ve wanted any real relationship with him at in that specific time period. I`ve always been curious about what would`ve happened if Fredrick had never told her about his war hero status and introduced himself and a normal citizen instead. Maybe he could`ve reached out to her that way and sought the recovery he needed. But Fredrick seems a bit incapable of lying to Shosanna about something like that.
[identity profile] agnes-wonka7.livejournal.com on June 12th, 2011 02:36 am (UTC)
wow! this sis so....deep.
I loved it!
http://suspiriorum.livejournal.com/: [film: IB; OTP] Welcome to your life[identity profile] suspiriorum.livejournal.com on June 12th, 2011 01:24 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much! ♥
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