Fading The Photographs

"Fading the Photographs"

Who: Etoile, Christiane & Morgenstern
IC Date: June 1940
OOC Date: Feb. 28, 2008

What: Morgenstern redecorates the cafe, alas.

Logger: Christiane

Cafe Mason (16 4)
The Grid-----> > > > > THE GREATEST GENERATION < < <

The cafe isn't huge by anyone's standard, fitting ten or so tables with four chairs around them, and a few smaller tables near the large front window to allow for more privacy with only two chairs. The tables all have a wooden surface but metal legs, and the chairs are simple wooden chairs with blue upholstery, matching the blue-white chequered table cloths. Mismatched vases with fresh flowers are on every table, together with salt and pepper shakers.
The floor is lacquered wood, the walls are painted white and the ceiling is also wood, with small lights hanging at even intervals to provide light for the customers. On the walls are photos of Arras and neighbourhood, but there's a section of wall dedicated to The Great War, with photos of soldiers from all corners of the world, even German.
A long counter stretches across most of the room, behind which the bartender can serve drinks and snacks, with shelves behind holding various liquors. A swing-door in a corner leads into the kitchen, letting the staff pass through easily to bring food to the guests. Another door at the other side of the room has a 'PRIVATE' sign on it - it must leads to the upper floor and the private residence of the owners.

It is currently daytime.

Sub-Rooms :
1. Table 1
2. Table 2

Doktor Schmidt

Private <PR> Out <O>

Etoile is polishing tables. Of late, she's been making a dedicated effort to help with the cafe and keep it neat and tidy. No, really, it's true.

Christiane is sitting at a table in the cafe. Reading, having a cup of tea. Trying to focus on anything and everything non-German. She smiles a little as she looks up at Etoile's working. Maybe this occupation thing isn't all bad.

Morgenstern is in the back and has so far been quiet for several hours, doing something with the room they're now staying in. Then suddenly, he starts banging with a hammer, the sound reverberating into the cafe area.

Etoile scrubs at a particularly sticky bit of dried beer on the table, and glances in the direction of the banging. She quietly clears her throat, then casts a shifty look to her mother. "Maman…" she ventures. "Do you think I should suggest to papa that he take those photos down?"

Christiane looks over at the photos. She seems to be less considering them than looking at them, at the pictures, and the men in them. "The German major did not ask them taken down. And he strikes me as the sort who is not shy about asking. It is your father's decision." She says no more. The banging has her attention, anyhow. "Markus!?" she calls. "What the devil are you doing?"

The banging stops and Morgenstern steps in from the back. There's some dust and sawdust in his hair. "I'm putting up a wall. Just something to hide the bed behind." The destruction of the upper floor only held him back so long, and the occupying force isn't deterring him either, even if the curfew has gotten him more surly than usual.

"The Germans seemed terribly interested in them, though," Etoile murmurs, and shuts up when Morgenstern steps in. She purses her lips as if she's considering whether to push her luck or not.

Christiane keeps her eyes resting on the photos. "Our past in this town is little secret, Ettie. I doubt they will bring us any trouble that would not have come anyhow. Besides…they are our memories." She does not offer any further explanation of what she means by that, turning her head back toward Morgenstern. She smiles at him, ever so slightly. "You see? The curfew is not so bad. At least things are quieter." It's sort of a joke, just not a very good one.

Morgenstern glances at his daughter but missed what the murmur was and so he just smiles a little at the two women. "Been awhile since we could just sit down and do nothing this time of day," he agrees, and wanders around the counter. "How about a drink. Might as well drink it before the Germans take it."

"Oh, go on then, although I seem to have been drinking a lot of late, for obvious reasons," Etoile tells Morgenstern, offering a small smile in return. She stops cleaning the table and wanders over to sit by Christiane, so that she can belatedly reply to her. It seems she's willing to push the subject, albeit hesitantly. "I understand, maman. I just thought that, well… The Germans might see them as being in bad taste. You know how sensitive people can get about political things. And if they were somewhere safe, you wouldn't have to worry about them being damaged."

Morgenstern pours up something stiff and strong, looking thoughtfully at Etoile before he pours her one too. He brings the drinks over and pulls a chair out to sit down with them. "What am I missing," he asks, looking between them.

"A drink would be lovely," Christiane says. Her tea is gone anyway. To Etoile, she shrugs. "Perhaps. Some complained long ago that there were Germans among the photos. But that did not make them be taken down. Still…" She sighs. "Things are different now. So different." She looks over at Morgenstern.

Morgenstern pours up something stiff and strong, looking thoughtfully at Etoile before he pours her one too. He brings the drinks over and pulls a chair out to sit down with them. "What am I missing," he asks, looking between them. "THe photos? I've been thinking of taking them down. If you think I should, I will. I can look at them whenever I want."

Etoile stares at Morgenstern with a look of shock, like he has just told her that he likes to wear women's underwear on weekends. "I thought… I thought you were going to be a bit more stubborn about keeping them up than that," she tells him, and grins slightly. "I was just suggesting it, that's all."

Christiane reaches for her drink, sipping it. Her eyes linger on the photos for a moment, before she looks away. "They are yours, Markus. And it is your decision."

"They're only photos," Markus says and he stands up after taking a hearty gulp of his drink, moving to take the framed photos down. "Etoile, we got something else to put up? Might be some drawings from when you were little…" he jokes. He takes each photo down with care, piling them in neat piles on a table.

"I'll see if I can find some nice prints," Etoile replies, quietly regarding her mother for a moment before looking back to Morgenstern. She manages a very dry smile. "Although I guess we could always put up some little German flags and pinups of Hitler. Alright, maybe not…" She takes her wine and sips it, looking thoughtful. "At least they can be put somewhere safe now. It was galling enough that we lost things due to the fire."

"Only photos, yes…" Still, there is regret in Christiane's eyes as she watches her husband take them down. She finishes her drink, eyes lingering on the wall that's soon quite bare.

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