Collaborateur – Magpie Tales

tintype 1850s

“Mademoiselle Dupont? Elodie? What are you doing here?”

Sarah stiffens, lowers her newspaper and her heart sinks. Her skin crawls with anticipation and fear. She hopes her husband is long gone from his spot in the shadows..

“Gunther! What a wonderful surprise! How have you been?” she trills, her voice light and carefree, or so she hopes.

The young officer, crisp and correct in his grey uniform waits to be invited and then sits down. He looks a little older than when they met last year, there are grey hairs, frown lines and a scar on one cheek. He is no longer fresh-faced, but his smile is still as beguiling as ever.

“Liebchen, I have missed you,” he says quietly, urgently, leaning forward so that only she can hear his whispered words. He strokes her cheek gently with his index finger.

Sarah blushes and looks down, unable to ignore the rapid beating of her heart.

“Putain! Filthy putain!” hisses the waiter as he glides past their table. This evening he has seen her sip fine French wine with a brave, loyal Frenchman and now she intends to guzzle rough German hock with an officer of the occupying forces. It is too much.

He slips outside, silent as a wraith in the steam and clatter of the kitchen, grim-faced

“Hsst! Guillaume!” he has reached the shadows beyond the streetlights, seen the tell-tale glow of the Gauloise that tells him the man is still there, watching, waiting.

“Oui, Gaston. I am here. What is it?”

“Your wife, she is a putain, uh? A traitor! Have you seen her cavorting with the German pig? Did you know, huh? Did you?”

The two men stare into the restaurant, watching the couple together at their table. They are completely absorbed.

“I see her, Gaston. Believe me, I did not know,” says the man quietly. He drops his cigarette on the ground, grinding it under his heel. He sees his action as a symbol of what happens next.

“You will do it, Gaston? You will deal with her?”

“I will. Bien sur, I will.”

They turn away from the restaurant, too soon to witness the German officer stand and leave, Le Figaro held firmly in his hand.


Here’s my latest entry to Magpie Tales. This story follows on from my entry last week, so please feel free to read that one first, or just read this in isolation. To me, the man in this photo represents the angry waiter!

I hope you enjoy it – and please do visit Magpie Tales for more poetry and prose!


magpie tales statue stamp 185

28 thoughts on “Collaborateur – Magpie Tales

  1. oo what an intriguing tale…went back and read the first as well…never more proud or more afraid…and then this…the passing of the book too…hmmm…more please….smiles.

  2. There is perfect continuity to last week’s Freya! Looking forward for the next episode! A prose is always a whiff of freshness to the usual poetry. Well crafted!


  3. Love your style, Freya. Some sentences just ‘dancing’ when’re red ‘he has seen her sip fine French wine with a brave, loyal Frenchman’ ~ love it! please, more! ~ :)x

  4. Desperate times call for desperate measures , it is important to get inside the head of Herr Standartenfuhrer Hans Landa ! Cheers

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