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Wednesday, April 27, 2016

W IS FOR WYRD

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THE NOT-SO-INNOCENTS ABROAD!


"When a person cannot find a deep sense of purpose, he distracts himself with pleasure." 
 - Viktor Frankl

Freud studied me intently.  "We come to the Letter W, Roland.  What occurs to you?"

I looked over his shoulder and went cold.  "Wyrd!"

When the three Norse Norns merge, 

they become the tall, angular spirit, Wyrd or Fate, from whom there was no escape.


When I saw Wyrd float towards the shadows in the rear of Meilori's, I heaved a sigh of relief.  

Neither Freud nor Twain had spotted her.

Mark snorted, "I think the same thing when I look at old Saw-Brains there, Roland."

Freud snapped, "What is your problem with me, Twain?"

Mark's arsenic blue-grey eyes glistened in the shadows.  "More than one, esteemed doctor."

He made a face as if his cigar tasted bad.

"In 1938 Vienna, you were granted an exit visa and allowed to list the names of six people to take with you."

Mark angrily ground out his cigar on the table.  

"You listed your doctor, your maid, your dog, and your wife’s ... sister, 

but you didn't list any of your own sisters!

All four of them were shuttled to the Terezín concentration camp 

where they died badly, while you, their brother, lived out your last days in London."

Freud was pale.  "I had limited money.  I could not afford ...."

"Your friends, your colleagues would have given you the money had you asked!" snapped Mark.

"Perhaps it is easy for you to ask for money, Twain, but I ...."

Mark shook his head as if ridding it of gnats. 

"Now, I have been accused of hubris so often that finally I had to look it up in the dictionary."

Mark glowered, "I only saw your picture.  Now, I know why."

Freud was about to speak when he froze.  Mark and I joined him.  

Wyrd, her grim eyes skewering the psychiatrist, 

now towered above him and spoke like the crushing of dying leaves underfoot.

"The Scribbler spoke of your wife's sister, Minna Bernays, but withheld his words.  I will not."

Wyrd traced strange burning runes on our table's surface.

"Your sister-in-law's sleeping arrangements in your wife's and your apartment would be called by my name -- weird.

 Minna’s small sleeping quarters were right next to your and Martha’s bedroom, and separated only by a flimsy partition, not a wall and door. 

The only way Minna could get to her room was to walk through the bedroom that her sister and brother-in-law shared."

Mark raised an eyebrow, but Freud snapped, "You would have had to live there to understand."

Mark snorted, "A situation I am glad to have been spared!"

Wyrd continued,

"In 1898, during a two-week vacation in the Swiss Alps, you and Minna registered at an inn as “Dr Sigm Freud u frau” — 

as man and wife.  

You took the largest room in the hotel, but one that had what is described as a 'double bed.'

Soon after you both checked in, you sent your wife a postcard that regaled her with details about the gorgeous scenery, 

but described your lodgings as 'humble,' even though the hotel was 'the second fanciest in town'.”

"I ...." began Freud, but Wyrd shook her head, disappearing and left only fading words behind.

"Now, you know why you are doomed never to leave Meilori's."

Mark cleared his throat.  "Well, as exit lines go, that one was a killer."

27 comments:

  1. Hi Roland - thanks for this ... I'd have never have known these incidents in Freud's life ... not a good thought to think about - poor sisters ... Hilary

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    1. Yes, indeed, poor sisters. Scholars have wondered for years why he did that.

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  2. OMG! I had no idea he left his own sisters behind... how horrible. And then, obviously, had a thing going with his wife's sister... I know he gave us many things, opened the door to the mind, but there has always been something about him that felt a bit off to me. I begin to understand what it is.

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    1. He was a strange man. I feel so sorry for his sisters and wife. :-(

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  3. Wow - assuming that you're quoting genuine history - I'm learning a great deal about Freud! I shall miss this when the challenge ends.

    Susan A Eames from
    Travel, Fiction and Photos

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    1. Yes, sadly this is actual history. The faintings at the stress of being disagreed with, the leaving of his sisters behind to die in concentration camps, his "vacation" with his wife's sister signing themselves into the hotel as husband and wife. All facts. :-(

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  4. Wow - assuming that you're quoting genuine history - I'm learning a great deal about Freud! I shall miss this when the challenge ends.

    Susan A Eames from
    Travel, Fiction and Photos

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  5. YAY! The rascal was found out! I do love the way you depict Twain. He doesn't hold back, does he? :):)

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    1. It was how Twain was in real life -- always standing up for those who could not for themselves.

      I am so happy you are enjoying these little conversations. :-)

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  6. Freud certainly got up to some shenanigans, didn't he. I've learned something new about him. Very interesting!

    Cheers - Ellen

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    1. Ellen, his sister-in-law was a shenanigan -- his sisters not so much. Sadly, we will never know the whole truth there. I am glad you are enjoying my little posts. :-)

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  7. Ah, very intense. Some stuff I didn't know there.

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    1. We never truly know those from history -- perhaps we never truly know those around us even.

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  8. Freud was a very strange man who was plagued by many demons. And Twain had a knack for jabbing at soft underbellies.

    @Kathleen01930
    Meet My Imaginary Friends
    #AtoZchallenge

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    1. Twain was always for the underdog, a role in which he often saw himself in. Freud was, indeed, a strange man! Glad you are enjoying these views into history and ghosts bantering.

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  9. Oh hell. I've been so away lately and I've been meaning to read this entire series. But now you are bookmarked *grin*

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    1. Thanks, Shadow. As a rare blood courier, I know all about being torn away from more pleasurable things!

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  10. Now that's a mind I'd love to know the intricacies of. Amazing facts I did not know and what a different picture it paints. Thanks for clearing the air.

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    1. Yes, what drove Freud to do the things he did to those closest to him?

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  11. What a horrible choice to make. Who shall live and who shall die. I'm suddenly reminded of Sophie's Choice, a story that has haunted me since I first read it.

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    1. It was a horrible choice, but his doctor and maid over his sisters? I am sure his dog did not need an exit visa. I would not have wanted to have to make that choice.

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  12. Wow, that's quite a story, I really knew nothing of Freud's tale. It does make one wonder why he didn't choose his own sisters.

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    1. He did not get along with his sisters. But to leave them to die? Brrr.

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  13. I've never had a good impression of Freud, for various reasons. This is chilling. (And Wyrd reminded me of a series of books I read a while back. Good ones.)

    Liz A. from Laws of Gravity

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    1. Me either. The more I learn of him the more I think he was addled. :-( What series of books was it?

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  14. I remember reading about he and his wife's sister. I've always felt like if I met him in real life, I might throat punch him. Once.

    We're almost to Z, Roland. Tell me to hang on. :)

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    1. I might have applauded you if I were there! You can do this, Teresa. Just 3 more letters! :-)

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