Charles Chevalier

Charles Chevalier born 1896 in Rouen, Normandy France to Auguste and Carina Becker Chevalier. His father was Auguste Chevalier a professor of International Finance at the famed Ecole Suprieure de Commerce de Rouen (Rouen School of Management). Auguste was a handsome and charming man and through his position at the University he managed to make many contacts (former students) connected to European financial institutions. Through these connections (many of whom divulged inside information) Auguste managed to make some shrewd investments that in turn made him a wealthy man. Auguste fell in love and married (rather late in life) the daughter of a German professor with whom he worked. The couple only had one child, Charles named after Charlemagne.

Charles had an easy up bringing never having to want for much. His father bestowed his charm and good looks upon Charles and taught the young man how to use them. His mother was very strict about making sure Charles knew about the German culture and language. Languages came easy for Charles and he would often converse for hours at a time with his Mother speaking only in German. His Mother also saw to it that Charles was taught all the finer points of being a gentleman. Charles is one of those people who seem to excel at everything he does. Academics were no exception. Mainly due to his Fathers urging, academics were fiercely enforced. Charles attended the best private schools of the day, where among other things he learned English. Upon the out break of WWI, Auguste once again manipulating connections he had in the finance world was able to send Carina and Charles to England before fighting broke out. During their time in England Charles attended Cambridge University earning a graduate degree in Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences with an emphasis in Latin in just four years. While at Cambridge Charles became a member of the Cambridge University Revolver and Pistol Club where he proved to be an excellent shot and even won a national championship. Charles also became involved with the Amateur Dramatic Club (ADC) and was the lead in several productions, but this was mostly done as a way to meet women.

One day Charles attended a magic show that was sponsored by the ADC and became enthralled with slight of hand trickery. Charles befriended the magician and soon talked the other into teaching him a few of the tricks. Charles practiced tirelessly until he became quite adapted at even the most difficult of tricks. Charles immensely enjoyed his life of academia and graduated a month before the Great War ended.

Soon after the armistice was signed Auguste wasted no time in bringing his family back to France. Upon returning to France Charles seemed at first to be oblivious to the devastation left by war and liked nothing more than to spend his fathers’ money in nightclubs dancing and seducing women. He especially excelled in charming older married women out of their jewels and money in which his skill at sleight of hand served him well. Soon though as Charles traveled about northern France he developed a private deep-seated feeling of guilt for having not come to his countries aid during the war. He never told anyone and kept these feeling hidden from all. Auguste became frustrated with Charles however, and had other ideas for his playboy son. First he cut Charles off from the money and changed his will creating a kind of trust fund that would pay Charles a monthly allowance (a rather healthy allowance by most standards) for as long as the money lasted. Then in 1920 ill and dying Auguste pulled the last few strings he had left to him and he was able to secure Charles, then 24, a position as a Professor of Latin at a newly formed small yet expensive private university near Arras. Charles adored being back in a life of academia. Especially since it made his carousing more affordable. Over the past 20 years Charles has developed into a fine teacher becoming quite popular among his students often performing a magic trick or telling amusing stories to help punctuate the otherwise dry lessons of Latin. Charles also has enjoyed rubbing elbows with the civic and social leaders of Arras having become a bit of a celebrity. Charles has also from behind the scenes and away from the public eye been responsible for funding much of the rebuilding of Arras after the Great War. It has been his way of privately dealing with his deep-seated feeling of guilt and remorse over having not fought during the Great War.

As the years rolled by Charles would remain close to his Mother until her death in 1932. Charles would retain his University post until the occupation of Arras by German forces. Charles currently lives in a better than average apartment over looking the town square.

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