“It’ll never happen.”
“Open your eyes. It’s happening right now.”
“The votes will never go his way.”
“And if they do? If that madman comes to power?”
“Keep your voice down.”
They look around them at the few occupied tables. They’re far from home, just to be sure of some privacy from particular prying eyes. No one here knows them, but that can be dangerous too. Friends and strangers are just as likely to file a report these days.
“I don’t think…”
They watch the man at the counter carefully as he lingers on a page of his newspaper before turning it and reaching for his coffee cup. Heinrich breathes a sigh of relief as the man carries on with his business, seemingly unaware of the conversation happening across the room. And why should he be, Heinrich thinks to himself. It’s just another day like any other. He’s hardly likely to care about the decision weighing on our minds.
“Heinrich, I’m scared.”
“I know, Liebchen. I am too.”
“You act so sure that everything is going to be alright.”
“That’s because I am sure.”
“How can you possibly be?”
“Because the man is a monster. There may be people who follow him, but there are far more who know him for what he is, and those of us who know, we’ll be voting against him taking power. And there are more of us, I’m sure of it, than there are of them.”
“It’ll never happen,” Heinrich repeats, and takes the hand which rests against a teacup, absentmindedly.
“Soon enough it will all be over.”
“Excuse me,” a voice says beside them, making them both jump, their hands flying apart as the waitress smiles down at them. “Would you like anything else, or shall I bring you the bill?”
“The bill please,” Heinrich says, returning the smile, but he watches hers fade as she walks away, and he wonders what she might have seen. “We should go,” he whispers. “Now.”
They stand, and Heinrich places money on the table, more than enough for a good tip. Some might even say more than enough for a great one. But he’s not sure that it’s going to be enough. They walk into the street and both flip the collars of their coats against the cold.
“I think so.”
They make their way as quickly as they can without drawing attention to themselves towards the train station.
“I would like to make a report.”
“Yes, ma’am. Where did the incident occur.”
She gives her address, her eyes darting around the room uneasily. If a customer walks in, she’ll need to attend to them. There isn’t much time.
“And the nature?”
“Two men,” she whispers, as though even the words feel dirty on her tongue. The thought of them sitting together, colluding, holding hands as though they have the right.”
“Thank you ma’am,” the voice on the other end of the line says, “and Herr Hitler thanks you for your support.”
On July 29, 1921, Adolf Hitler is made Fuhrer of the Nazi Party in Germany. At the time, the Nazis numbered less than 4000. Hitler would go on to establish the Third Reich, and eventually, initiate World War II.
Write at least 500 words about this day in history. It can be from the perspective of living through that day, recounting the day afterwards, or even your own variation on what the day might have been, in an alternative history.