“I’m from England,” she stated proudly, looking down at the other, more petite woman as though she were some kind of inferior being and should be amazed by this.
“I can tell,” the little blonde replied in a soft München voice. The taller one, who stood at an impressive and intimidating six feet with slim legs that seemed to go on for miles, frowned down at her, unhappy that she had passive-aggressively called attention to her imperfect and artificial sounding German accent. She was evidently self-conscious about it.
“I’ve been an ardent follower of the Führer since I first heard him speak in 1934,” Unity continued on in confidence as they stood outside on the terrace, looking over the rolling hills that grew into large, snow-capped mountains further out. “He has such a beautiful way with words and the way he can make you feel so passionate-”
“I’m quite aware,” Eva interrupted her coolly, taking in a drag from her cigarette. “That tends to be the moment most people become fond of him.” She didn’t need to have her boyfriend-whom she’d been involved with for ten years already-explained to her as though she were a small child, completely ignorant of everything going on in Germany. She didn’t care for politics, honestly. But she knew well of the kinds of things he was capable of when it came to rousing up and leading the masses. Everyone did.
If you didn’t, there was a good possibility you were no longer breathing.
Unity scrutinized her closely with her shallow blue eyes, undoubtedly trying to figure something out within the tiny brain that sat cushioned within her thick skull. She’d seen that questioning look many times before, stemming from almost everyone he invited up here to his home in the Alps. She was trying to figure out who she was; what kind of connection an ordinary looking girl like her could possibly have to the great and all mighty Führer.
Eva secretly hoped to herself she wasn’t as oblivious as she appeared.
“Who are you again?” she suddenly asked. Eva could see the suspicion in her eyes.
“Just another girl like you, I suppose,” she answered in perfect and practiced normalcy. Through her eyes, however, she was sending a silent warning to Unity that she needed to watch her step. This really was her territory and she wanted her to be painfully aware that she and her obvious intentions with her lover were very much unwelcome.
Unity stared at her for a moment, attempting to sort through the mixed signals she was receiving. “No, I mean, how do you know him?” she clarified, unsatisfied with the vague answer she had received.
“I’m… kind of like a secretary. I help out at his personal photographer’s shop.”
“‘Kind of like a secretary?'” Unity inquired, though Eva could sense she was starting to downplay her position within his life. She exhaled in subtle annoyance, turning her left hand palm-up and looking down at the delicate face that sat within a glittering and polished border against the inside of her wrist. It was a beautiful new platinum wristwatch he had bestowed upon her when the country had been on the cusp of spring, the back side of it having been engraved with the utmost care: Zum 6.2.1939 herzlichst Adolf Hitler, or ‘Affectionately, Adolf Hitler.’
He had given it to her for her twenty-seventh birthday as they had relaxed together on the large fluffy bed he had provided for her room in his home, bought only when he deemed it fit his standards since he knew he’d be sleeping in it more often than not when with her. He had reached over and opened the drawer to her nightstand, pulling from within it a small package wrapped in shiny foil that had been cleverly hidden before they had left their guests earlier than usual for bed. When he had delivered the signal that it was time for him to depart for sleep, she had figured the extra time he was giving her that night was his gift to her.
But he’d quickly proven her blissfully wrong.
He had presented it to her at the stroke of midnight and she had been so throw by his charm that she momentarily forgot about the present as she proceeded to show her overflowing happiness through affectionate actions.
He had chuckled and gently pulled her eager mouth from his, gazing tenderly into her eyes which shone brightly in the warm golden light coming from the lamp beside the bed. “My dear, don’t thank me before you’ve opened it!” he playfully scolded her. “You haven’t yet had the opportunity to give it your absolute approval.”
“I approve,” she simply stated and had kissed him again.
He allowed her continued affections before finally restraining her for a second time, a bright smile on his face, his eyes glowing with anticipation. “Please, my little Eva, just open it so I can…” he trailed off, not sure what he had been intending to say.
“So you can what?” she giggled, running her fingers through his soft hair.
“I don’t know, just open it please!” he pleaded in good humor, grabbing the package from where it had slid during her assault. He handed it back to her as she sat back up against the white headboard. She held it within her hands, not wanting to tear into and destroy the beautiful wrapping. It was a dark shimmering gold with a delicate red ribbon tied around it, a little bow nestled in the center. “Eva, you’re killing me,” he whispered when she remained unmoving.
“Ssh,” she shushed him, desiring to admire the pretty little box for a little while longer. He obeyed and stayed silent as he laid on his side next to her, his head propped up on one arm as he tranquilly observed this strange little creature known as ‘woman’ in front of him. It sometimes pained him that he couldn’t give her more moments like this but he was determined to keep her jovial while he was around and had time.
Then she had looked over at him, eager and hesitant, clutching the gift to her chest. “Okay, I’m ready,” she had finally said, ripping into the thin and fragile paper, exposing a long jewelry box covered with soft black velvet on the outside. She had tossed the paper onto the floor and let her fingertips run over the smooth material.
She slowly pried open the two mouths of the box and had suddenly inhaled as a gorgeous platinum watch nestled within the folds of white silk was revealed to her gaze, impressively and magnificently glistening even in the low light her lamp provided. “Oh, my,” she had breathed, hesitantly bring her fingers to the cold stones and fingering them with soft delicacy.
“Take it out,” he encouraged nonchalantly, patiently waiting for her to discover what he thought would be the best part of the gift. “Examine it thoroughly to be sure it is to your liking.”
She did as she was told, taking the dazzling watch out of its protective confines and held it close to her eyes, admiring the perfectly cut stones and the simplistic beauty in the design of its face. She was lost to awe until her fingertips forced her to take notice of the fact that the back of the watch wasn’t completely smooth. It felt as though there were scratches thrown in a haphazard pattern on the metal.
She had a fleeting worry that the watchmaker had ruined the back and he hadn’t noticed before purchasing it. Or, there was the saddening possibility that he hadn’t noticed it because he hadn’t chosen it himself. Perhaps he had handed down the responsibility of getting her a gift to someone else within the party. Her heart momentarily dropped into her stomach before she turned it over and ascertained that it wasn’t damage on the surface of the metal but legible writing. It held a sentimental statement, craftily engraved into the shiny material along with an exact replica of his signature. She briefly wondered how they’d accomplished that before she remembered he was still with her, observing her reaction.
“Mein Gott, Adi!” she almost squealed then brought her hand up to her mouth in slight embarrassment, looking at him as she blushed. She had to remember to keep quiet. Everyone was supposed to think they were sleeping peacefully. In their own rooms.
“Do you like it?” he asked quietly, giving her a winning smile.
“It’s… oh, it’s so beautiful,” she murmured as she grasped for words within her mind that would correctly convey the perfection of this moment; but failed and contentedly gave up, deciding she would simply show him how much this meant to her. After all, he was certainly the one who was more effective when it came to utilizing words in their relationship and she was okay with that.
“I want you to always wear it,” he said as he sat up onto his knees and began to clasp it around her wrist with care. “So you’ll never forget exactly what you are to me: my dearest one and only.”
She had wrapped her arms around him then, passionately capturing his lips as she pulled him down onto her in swelling desire. He was careful not to place his full weight onto her, for she was quite a bit smaller than him; just enough so their bodies fit perfectly and snugly within one another’s, the contours of their figures meshing together like puzzle pieces pre-made for each other.
Her dainty hands found their way to his chest and located the little buttons of his shirtsleeves, always the first obstacle in her need to give herself over to him completely, and share with him the experience of such private and intense intimacy. She began to undo them with familiarity and speed, flying down the row as she enticingly trailed down his body with her other hand to-
“Such an exquisite watch!” the voice came crashing into her memory, quickly dissipating the hot-blooded and horribly un-Christian image of the two of them like thin smoke.
“Hmm?” Eva looked up with a start, remembering she was still standing outside with Unity, failing to carry on the uninteresting conversation that had ensued after she’d come out here for a smoke. Unity had seen her through the glass doors and had gone on to disturb her with the need to press upon Eva her supposed superiority and importance in Adolf’s life.
She almost felt sorry for the woman, having crafted this imaginary relationship out of false hope that infected one like a disease and mistranslated signals which only served to worsen and inflame the condition. But she knew exactly how charming he could be and most often was around the female variety; and she knew all too well how fast and hard a girl could fall prey to his irresistible spell.
“I was just commenting on that beautiful watch you have there,” she continued, her eyes wide, apparently having forgotten that they had been in the middle of a different topic that Eva was more than willing to let go of.
Unity came closer to her, looking intently at her wrist. “Where on earth did you get it?”
Eva smiled at her, twisting her wrist so the stones danced and glimmered in the bright sunlight. “It was a gift, actually.”
Unity looked back up at her and threw her a knowing grin. “Really?” she said, her eyebrows arching up. Then, after a moment of silence: “A man?”
Eva only looked out over the hills again, beaming in a way to make it obvious she was purposely harboring a delicious secret.
Unity wasn’t as stupid as she had feared.
“My, my,” she responded with a giggle. “Clearly someone is hot for your affection.”
“Would you like to examine it closer?” Eva suddenly asked, fully aware she would most certainly be scolded for this dirty little trick later, but she didn’t care.
“May I?” she requested as Eva began to unclasp the watch from her wrist. She handed it over to Unity who marveled at the beauty and detail of the sparkling piece of jewelry, her fingers feeling their way along the stones. She then turned it over in her palm, an inquisitive look on her face; and when she saw there was writing on the back, peered closer to read what it said.
A moment passed before she looked up at Eva in utter shock.
The door to the house then opened, a maid stepping out onto the breezy terrace. “Ladies, der Führer requests your presence for lunch now.”
Eva took back her watch, fixing it back onto its permanent place around her wrist as she responded “Tell him we’ll be with him in a moment.” The maid nodded in response and proceeded back inside.
Eva quickly put out her cigarette and popped a mint into her mouth as Unity watched her in silence, unsure of how she should process what she had just seen. There might have also been some evidence of hurt that was beginning to bloom.
“Shall we?” Eva asked once she was ready and headed into the large mountain home, feeling as though she’d just succeeded in some kind of conquest, though she wasn’t sure there really had been one in the first place.
Either way, she was satisfied in knowing that Unity was now aware, albeit perhaps painfully, that she had already saw and conquered the heart of her beloved Führer.
The position she had been gunning for was already filled.
© 2014 Elizabeth Klarke
Oh, he’s so fluffy in this. Congratulations, you now have diabetes. I’m always for a scenario in which Eva wins like this….