Effi Briest 1974 CD1
FONTANE - EFFl BRlEST, OR
MANY PEOPLE WHO ARE AWARE
OF THElR OWN CAPABlLlTlES AND NEEDS,
YET ACQUlESCE TO THE PREVAlLlNG
SYSTEM lN THElR THOUGHTS AND DEEDS,
THEREBY CONFlRM AND RElNFORCE lT
A FlLM BY RAlNER WERNER FASSBlNDER
In front of the Briests' manor in Hohen-Cremmen...
the famiIy seat since the time of EIector Georg WiIheIm...
the viIIage street Iay stiII, bathed in the midday sun.
On the park side, a wing buiIt on at right angIes...
cast a broad shadow on a white-and-green chequered path...
and on a Iarge, round fIower bed with a sundiaI in the middIe...
and Canna indica and rhubarb around its edge.
Effi, you should have become an equestrian artiste.
Always on the trapeze, an aerial spirit!
l do believe you would enjoy it.
But then who would be to blame?
Whom do l take after if not you?
Or do you think Papa?
You have to laugh yourself.
Why don't you make a lady out of me, then?
Would you like that?
Don't be so boisterous, Effi! Not so impetuous!
lt worries me when l see you like this.
A STORY OF RENUNClATlON
lS NEVER AMlSS.
Baron lnnstetten was not even 20...
when he was garrisoned over there with the Rathenow regiment...
and was on friendly terms with the local landowners.
He especially liked to visit my grandfather's estate in Schwantikow.
Not because of grandfather, of course.
When Mama talks about it...
it's obvious for whom he came...
and l think the feeling was mutual.
What happened then?
Everything took its natural course...
as it always does.
He was still so very young.
Then father came along.
He was already in the council of nobles and owned Hohen-Cremmen...
and she accepted him without more ado...
and became Frau von Briest.
And what became of lnnstetten?
He didn't kill himself, or he wouldn't be coming today.
He resigned his commission...
and began to study law.
But Frau von Briest, who couId aIso be unconventionaI herseIf...
detained Effi as she was hurrying off.
She Iooked at the charming young creature...
who was stiII fIushed from pIaying and in the bIoom of youth.
And she confided to her.:
''I think you had best stay as you are.
''Yes, stay as you are. You Iook very comeIy...
''so innocent and unprepared, not at aII primped up.
''And that's the main thing right now.
''I have something to teII you, Effi.'' She took her daughter by both hands.
''I must teII you....''
''What's the matter, Mama? You frighten me.''
''I have to teII you, Effi...
''that Baron Innstetten has asked for your hand.''
''Asked to marry me? SeriousIy?''
''It's not a matter to joke about.
''You saw him two days ago, and I think you Iiked him.
''He is oIder than you, but that is aII to the good.
''He's a man of good character, weII-situated and weII-bred...
''and if you don't say no, which I scarceIy expect you to do...
''by the age of 20, you wiII be...
''where others are at 40.
''You'II rise much higher than your mother.''
Effi, come here!
Effi was not greatIy interested...
in mundane possessions...
but when she went stroIIing with her mother...
perusing the window dispIays and went into the Demuth store...
to purchase aII manner of things for her honeymoon in ItaIy...
her true character reveaIed itseIf.
OnIy the most eIegant things wouId do...
and she wouId renounce aII idea of the second-best.
Second-best meant nothing to her anymore.
She knew how to do without things...
and in forgoing things Iike that, she seemed undemanding.
But when she reaIIy set her heart on something...
it had to be quite exceptionaI...
and in that respect, she was demanding.
What else have you set your heart on?
-Nothing, Mama. -Nothing at all?
Nothing, quite seriously.
But if there were something....
lt would be a black Japanese screen...
with golden birds on it...
with long bills like cranes.
And a lamp for our bedroom that would radiate a red light.
Now you're silent and look at me...
as if l'd said something improper.
No, Effi, not improper...
and certainly not to your mother.
l know you too well.
You have a great imagination...
and you conjure up pictures of the future.
The more colourful they are...
the lovelier and more desirable they seem to you.
l became aware of that when we were shopping for your honeymoon.
Now you think it would be wonderful...
to have a bedroom screen...
with all kinds of fabulous beasts on it...
and all lit by a dim red lamp.
lt seems like a fairy tale to you...
and you would like to be the princess.
Yes, Mama, that's how l am.
Yes, that's how you are.
l'm aware of that.
But, my dear Effi, we have to tread warily in life...
especially we women.
Don't you love Geert?
Why shouldn't l love him?
l love Bertha, l love Hulda, l love old Niemeyer...
and needless to say, l love you and Papa.
l love everyone who's nice to me and spoils me.
Geert will spoil me, too.
He wants to buy me jewellery in Venice.
He doesn't know l don't care for jewellery.
l prefer to clamber around and play on the swing...
fearing that something will break and l'll fall...
but knowing it won't cost me my neck.
Do you love your cousin Briest?
Very much. He's always so amusing.
Would you have liked to marry him?
Good heavens, no! He's hardly more than a boy.
Whereas Geert's a man...
a handsome man...
with whom l can cut a dash...
who will make a mark on the world.
-What entered your mind? -You're right, Effi. l'm glad to hear it.
-But you have something else on your mind. -Perhaps.
Tell me, then!
Well, you see, Mama...
the fact that he's older than l am...
doesn't matter. Perhaps it's a good thing.
He's not really old.
He's fit and well...
and soldierly and dashing.
l could almost say l'm all for him...
-if only he were just a little different. -Different in what way?
Yes, in what way?
You mustn't laugh at me, Mama.
lt's something l heard only recently at the pastor's house.
We were talking about lnnstetten...
when suddenly old Niemeyer frowned...
in an admiring sort of way and said:
''The baron is a man of principles.''
-So he is, Effi. -Of course.
l think Niemeyer even said...
lnnstetten was a person...
of great probity...
and that seems to me to be even higher.
But l am not at all.
You see, Mama...
that's something that pains and frightens me.
He's so kind and good to me...
But l'm afraid of him.
A MAN lN HlS POSlTlON
HAS TO BE COLD, OF COURSE.
ON WHAT DO PEOPLE FOUNDER lN LlFE
lF NOT WARM HUMAN EMOTlONS?
There's nothing like a wedding!
Except one's own, of course.
l don't know how you can say such a thing, Briest.
lt's news to me that you have suffered from marriage.
l can't imagine why.
Let's not talk about us.
We didn't even have a honeymoon!
Your father was against it.
But Effi is going on honeymoon.
How l envy her!
On the ten o'clock train, off they went!
They must be...
somewhere near Regensburg by now.
l imagine he'll describe...
the treasures of the Valhalla, without alighting, of course.
an excellent person...
but a bit of an art fiend.
our poor Effi is a child of nature.
l'm afraid he'll torment her...
with his enthusiasm for art.
All men torment their wives.
There are worse things than a passion for art.
We don't want to quarrel over that.
lt's much too vast a subject.
And every person's different.
You would have been in your element.
You'd have suited lnnstetten far better than Effi.
A pity! Now it's too late.
The other things will be sent on.
Off we go, Kruse!
They are dependent on the regions they trade with...
and since they have connections throughout the world...
you'll find people among them from all over the world...
even in our good old Kessin, although it's out in the sticks.
But it's delightful, Geert.
You always speak of ''the sticks''...
but l find a whole new world to discover.
All sorts of exotic things. That's what you really meant?
A whole new world...
with a black man or a Turk perhaps...
or even a Chinese.
Even a Chinese.
How well you guess!
Possibly we do still have one. We certainly used to have one.
He's dead now and buried in a little fenced-off plot of earth...
right next to the churchyard.
lf you're not afraid, l'll show you...
his grave sometime.
lt lies among the dunes...
surrounded by marram grass and a few immortelles.
And always the sound of the sea.
lt's very beautiful...
but also rather eerie.
and l'd like to know more about it.
Then again, maybe not.
lf l hope to sleep well tonight, l won't want to see a Chinese by my bed.
How you spoil your poor little Effi!
A grand piano, and this rug...
l do believe it's Turkish.
And the bowl with fish, and the jardiniére!
l'm being spoiled on all sides!
The master was quite right.
''Up with the lark'' was my parents' motto, too.
lf you sleep away the morning...
the whole day is in disarray.
But the master won't be too strict with me.
l lay awake a long time last night.
l was even somewhat afraid.
What do l hear, ma'am? What happened?
l heard a strange sound above me...
not loud, but insistent...
like dresses with long trains brushing over the floorboards.
ln my agitation, l thought l saw small, white satin shoes...
as if someone were dancing up there, very quietly.
That's in the hall upstairs.
We used to hear it in the kitchen, too. But not anymore.
We've grown accustomed to it.
you're a delightful creature.
You have no idea how much l think so...
and how l wish to show you every moment...
that l think so.
There's plenty of time for that.
l'm only 17...
and don't intend to die yet.
Not before me, at least.
if l were to die, l would like to take you with me.
No one else should have you.
What do you say to that?
l'll have to think it over.
But let's forget it. l don't like talking about death.
l'm in favour of living.
What sort of life shall we lead here?
ln ''good old Kessin,'' as you call it...
there must be some society we can keep.
Are there good families in the town?
in that respect you'll be greatly disappointed.
You'll meet a few members...
of the local aristocracy.
But here in the town there's nobody.
Nobody at all?
That's hard to believe.
Nearly 3,000 people live in the town.
And among a population of 3,000, apart from people like Beza, the barber...
there must be some kind of elite or so....
AS WELL AS THE COMMON PEOPLE
THERE MUST BE AN ELlTE.
...and the room upstairs, where the curtains brush the floor....
what do you know about that room?
Only what l just said.
For a good hour...
when l woke up last night...
it was as if l heard shoes shuffling over the ground...
as if someone were dancing...
and something like music, but very faint.
When l told Johanna about it this morning...
in excuse for having slept so long afterwards...
she said it was the long curtains in the room upstairs.
To put an end to the matter...
l think we should simply cut them shorter...
or close the windows.
The stormy season will soon be here anyway...
by the middle of November.
Show him in!
My husband already told me.
He's in his office...
but he should be back any minute.
l'd like to tell you how much pleasure...
your beautiful flowers and card gave me yesterday.
l ceased to feel like a stranger here.
And when l told lnnstetten, he said we would become firm friends.
The district councillor said that?
The councillor and your dear self...
are, if l may say so, ma'am...
the perfect match of two kind persons.
For l know what your husband is like...
and l can see how you are, ma'am.
l hope your eyes don't deceive you.
l'm so very young...
-and youth-- -Ah, my dear lady...
don't say anything against youth.
with all its faults...
is something beautiful and engaging.
for all its virtues...
is not worth much.
Personally, l can't say much on the matter.
About age, l can, but not about youth...
because l was never really young.
People like me...
are never young.
That is the saddest thing of all.
One has no pluck.
One lacks self-confidence.
The years go by...
one grows old...
and life was meagre...
Oh, you shouldn't say such things!
We women are not that bad.
No, of course not.
GieshuebIer wouId have Iiked to decIare his Iove...
and, Iike EI Cid or some other hero...
sought her permission to fight and die for her.
Since this was not possibIe and his heart couId bear no more...
he stood up, Iooked for his hat, which he found at once...
and, after repeatedIy kissing Effi's hand, quickIy withdrew...
without a further word.
Everywhere Effi went...
she had the same impression.
Mediocre peopIe, usuaIIy of dubious charm...
who, whiIe taIking about Bismarck and the Crown Princess...
were reaIIy eyeing Effi's attire.
Some thought it too pretentious for such a young Iady.
Others found it unseemIy for a Iady of her sociaI standing.
They recognized the infIuence of BerIin.
A regard for appearances, a strange awkwardness...
and uncertainty in her approach to major issues.
For the Borckes in Rothenmoor...
and the famiIies in Morgnitz and Dabergotz...
she was ''affIicted with rationaIism''...
whiIe the Grasenabbs in Kroschentin decIared her to be an ''atheist.''
AdmittedIy, oId Frau von Grasenabb...
née StiefeI von StiefeIstein from south Germany...
had made a vague attempt to cIaim Effi for the ideas of deism.
But Sidonie von Grasenabb, a 43-year-oId spinster...
wouId have none of it.
''She's an atheist, Mother...
''and that's the truth of the matter!''
Whereupon, the oId Iady, who feared her own daughter...
wretchedIy heId her tongue.
we should celebrate this day...
but l'm not sure how.
Shall l play you...
a victory march?
Or should l...
bear you in triumph across the hall?
We ought to do something...
for you should know...
today's courtesy visit was the last.
But the mere feeling that we can relax now is celebration enough.
You might give me a kiss, though.
But you don't even think of that.
Not a token of affection the whole journey.
You're as icy as a snowman.
Don't go on!
l shall mend my ways.
THEN CAME THElR FlRST SEPARATlON,
WHlCH LASTED ALMOST 12 HOURS.
You called, ma'am?
Johanna, l'm going to bed. lt's still early, l know.
But l feel so alone.
Please post the letter first.
When you return, it will be time for bed.
And even if it isn't....
What's she like?
She's very young.
But that's no bad thing, quite the opposite.
The young ones just stand in front of the mirror...
titivating themselves all the time, so they don't see or hear too much.
They don't count candle stumps...
or begrudge a person a kiss...
just because they don't get any themselves anymore.
My previous mistress was like that...
but the present one's not.
ls he very affectionate?
You can imagine.
But he leaves her alone...
Yes, but don't forget there's the prince, Frau Paaschen!
And he is district councillor, after all.
He may want to rise even higher.
Of course he does. And he will. lt lies in his nature.
My husband says so, too. He's a good judge of people.
l'm so afraid.
That'll pass, ma'am. We've all been afraid.
You've all been afraid?
What do you mean?
lf you're really afraid, ma'am, l can make up a bed here...
and sleep here till tomorrow...
or until the master comes back.
The master shouldn't find out l'm afraid. He doesn't like that.
He wants me to be brave.
But l can't be.
l know l have to overcome my fears...
and do as he wishes.
What's the matter with your mistress? Kruse said you'd slept over there.
Madam rang three times quickly.
Not without reason, l thought.
And l was right.
Probably a dream, or the other thing.
What other thing?
-Oh, you know, sir-- -l know nothing.
Anyway, it must stop.
HaIf an hour Iater, Effi appeared.
She Iooked IoveIy, quite paIe, and Ieaning on Johanna's arm.
But when she saw Innstetten...
she ran to him and hugged and kissed him...
and the tears ran down her cheeks.
You see, Effi...
l can't just go away from here...
even if one could sell the house or exchange it for another...
it would be like a rebuff to the prince.
l can't have the people here saying:
''lnnstetten is selling his house...
''because his wife thought the picture of a Chinaman near her bed was a ghost.''
That would be the end of me.
One would never live down...
You have no idea how ambitious l am.
l married you out of ambition.
Don't pull such a serious face!
l love you.
What does one say when one plucks a flower and pulls out the petals?
''l love you...
''with all my heart...
''with every part.''
-ls someone buried there? -Yes, the Chinese.
-Ours? -Yes, ours.
Then there is something to it? Some story?
You'd better tell me all about it.
The truth can't torment me more than my imagination.
Where does one begin?
Even with stories it's difficult.
Oh, Geert, how delightful it all is...
and what a dull existence l led in Hohen-Cremmen!
Never anything out of the ordinary!
You shouldn't talk like that.
Whatever you think about ghosts...
beware of things that are unusual...
or what people call ''unusual''!
What you find so enticing, including the sort of life...
Miss Trippelli leads...
is usually gained at the cost of happiness.
lt arrives in Berlin at 6:50...
and an hour later...
if the wind's right, they'll hear it in Hohen-Cremmen...
rattling past in the distance.
Would you like to be on it, Effi?
GieshuebIer was very fond of his artist friend...
and esteemed her taIents highIy.
But his enthusiasm did not bIind him to the fact...
that she possessed...
onIy modest sociaI accompIishments.
And these were what he cuItivated assiduousIy himseIf.
Marietta, l have ordered a modest supper for 8 o'clock.
We still have 45 minutes...
unless you'd prefer to sing a cheerful song at table.
l wonder what he'll bring.
Something by Gluck, l imagine...
something highly dramatic.
lf l may say so, Miss Trippelli...
l'm surprised to hear you're only a concert singer.
l think you'd be ideally suited...
to the stage more than most.
LuIIaby by Louis Spohr.
AII is sIumbering, sweet and deep
Come, my chiId, now you must sIeep
Outside it's the wind that sighs
Whispering ''sususu, '' its IuIIabies
SIeep, my chiId, sIeep
l wish l could tell you...
how grateful l am to you!
lt was all so...
lovely, so assured...
But most of all, l admire...
the calmness with which you perform.
l'm so impressionable.
The least mention of ghosts...
makes me tremble...
and l am unable to regain my composure.
You sing these things so powerfully, so movingly...
yet you remain so serene yourself.
l come from an enlightened family.
When the phonograph appeared...
my father said, ''There's something to it, Marie.''
And he was right. There is something to it.
We are beset on all sides.
You will come to realize that.
Shall we go in to supper?
BARONESS lNNSTETTEN, NÉE BRlEST.
ARRlVED SAFEL Y. PRlNCE K. AT STATlON.
MORE ENAMOURED OF ME THAN EVER.
MANY THANKS FOR YOUR HOSPlTALlTY.
REGARDS TO THE BARON,
''Three wise kings came to Christ's door.
''One among them was a blackamoor.
''Today, a Moorish purveyor brings all kinds of spiced and dainty things.
''lnstead of myrrh and incense, though...
''he brings morsels of almond and pistachio.''
To receive the respects of a good person...
is something special, agreeable.
Don't you think so, Geert?
l do indeed.
lt is perhaps the only true source of joy.
Or it should be at least.
But everyone is so wrapped up in mundane things.
ln the end, though...
we are what we are.
ALL WAS STlLL lN THE HOUSE.
''What I hinted at recentIy has now been confirmed.
''Every day anew, Innstetten expresses his joy at the news.
''I need not teII you how happy I am myseIf...
''since I shaII have new Iife and distraction about me...
''or, as Geert puts it, 'a precious toy.'
''Those are probabIy the right words, but he shouIdn't use them.
''They're Iike a stab in the heart...
''and remind me how young I am...
''and that I'm scarceIy out of the nursery.''
-Who was she? -Registrar Rode's widow.
l always imagined registrars' widows to be poor.
So they are as a rule.
She was an exception.
She was altogether a very peculiar woman...
sickly and weak on her legs.
That's why she had a woman servant strong enough...
to protect and carry her if anything happened.
l've seen her.
Kind brown eyes with a frank and honest look.
-But a bit simple. -That's right.
To shake off her sense of coIdness and duIIness...
she feIt the desire to go for a Ionger waIk.
And her doctor had toId her that exercise in the fresh air...
was the best thing for her condition.
What is your name?
That's an uncommon name. lt must be....
You're right, ma'am.
lt's a Catholic name.
And l am a Catholic.
l'm from Eichsfeld.
Being Catholic makes things even harder.
A lot of people won't take Catholics...
because they always run to church to confess...
but don't confess the main thing.
The times l've heard that!
l'm a bad Catholic.
l've completely lapsed.
Perhaps that's why things have turned out badly for me.
You have to stick to your faith...
and take part in everything.
l'd like to ask you something.
Are you fond of children?
lt's terrible, the things you have to do for old women like that.
But a dear little thing...
like a doll...
that stares at you with its little eyes...
to put joy in your heart.
You are a good, true soul.
l can see that.
Somewhat plainspoken, but they're often the best people...
l felt at once l could trust you.
Would you like to work for me?
The baby will have to be nursed...
and cared for...
perhaps even specially fed.
l sure l'm not mistaken in you.
You did quite right, Effi.
lf there's nothing bad in her serving record...
we'll take her on the strength of her kind face.
One rarely goes wrong with that, thank God!
All will be well now.
l'm no longer afraid.
ON THE MORNlNG OF JUL Y 3,
A CRADLE STOOD NEXT TO EFFl'S BED.
DR. HANNEMANN PATTED
THE YOUNG WOMAN'S HAND AND SAlD:
''TODAY'S THE ANNlVERSARY
''PlTY lT'S A GlRL!
''BUT NEXT TlME MAY BE DlFFERENT
''AND THE PRUSSlANS HAVE MANY
''VlCTORlES TO CELEBRATE.''
She compIeteIy forgot that she was married.
Those were happy hours.
But best of aII...
she Iiked to stand on the swing and fIy through the air...
with the feeIing, ''I'm going to faII!''
A strange, tingIing sensation...
a sweet thriII of danger.
lnnstetten is a man of honour.
He is indeed.
And he loves me.
Of course he does.
And where there's love, it will be returned.
That's how things are.
l'm just surprised he hasn't taken time off for a quick visit.
-When one has such a young wife-- -lnnstetten is so conscientious...
and wants to stand high in favour.
Kessin is just a stepping stone. And anyway...
l won't run away from him.
l belong to him.
lf one is too affectionate with such an age difference...
people just laugh.
Yes, they do, Effi.
But one has to live with that.
By the way, don't mention it to anyone...
not even to your mother.
lt's hard to know what to do.
And it's much too vast a subject.
lsn't that Crampas coming?
And from the beach?
Surely he hasn't been bathing on September 27th!
He often does things like that.
Just showing off!
Please forgive me...
for not receiving you with all due ceremony...
but 10:00 a.m. is an ungodly hour.
One is informal, not to say familiar.
Take a seat...
and tell us what you have been up to.
Judging by your hair...
which l wish for your sake you had more of, you've been bathing.
lt's going to be a wonderful winter...
if we can count on your support.
Miss Trippelli is coming.
-Then my presence is superfluous. -By no means.
Trippelli can't sing the whole week.
lt would be too much for her and for us.
Variety is the spice of life...
that every happy marriage would seem to refute.
lf there is such a thing as a happy marriage, mine excepted.
How about hunting seals next time?
That's not possible. The harbour police.
When l hear things like that!
Does everything have to be so legal?
Legality is boring.
Crampas, that's typical of you...
and Effi applauds you.
Women, of course...
are the first to cry for a policeman...
but the law doesn't interest them.
That has always been their privilege, and we...
can't change it, lnnstetten.
And l don't want to.
l don't want to exculpate anyone.
But you, Crampas...
you have learned discipline...
and know very well that law and order are vital.
A man like you really shouldn't talk like that...
not even in jest.
You have a sublime disregard for these things.
''lt won't be the end of the world,'' you think.
Not yet, perhaps...
but one day it will be.
The eIection campaign, which began in October...
prevented Innstetten taking part in further excursions.
Crampas and Effi wouId have stopped, too...
in deference to the peopIe of Kessin...
if Kruse had not been present as a kind of chaperone.
As it was, they continued their rides into November.
A good conversationaIist...
Crampas wouId teII stories about war and his regiment...
and anecdotes about Innstetten...
who, with his earnestness and reserve...
had never fitted into the spirited circIe of his comrades...
so that he had been respected rather than heId in affection.
lt's just as well, respect is the main thing.
He loved to tell us ghost stories.
And when he had got us all excited, and had scared some people perhaps...
suddenly, it would seem as if he were just making fun of our credulity.
Once l told him to his face...
''lnnstetten, that's a load of poppycock!
''You don't believe it any more than we do...
''but you want to make yourself interesting.
''You think that being unusual will help your career...
''that ordinary people are not wanted at the top.
''And since that's your ambition...
''you've hit on something out of the ordinary, namely ghosts.''
You say nothing?
ln all seriousness, Crampas, and l should like a serious reply...
how do you explain all this?
My dear lady...
as well as furthering his career, regardless of cost...
and with the aid of a ghost if necessary...
lnnstetten has another passion.
He has an urge to be didactic.
He's a born schoolmaster.
And he wants to educate me?
Education by means of ghosts?
''Educate'' is perhaps the wrong word.
But education in a roundabout way.
l don't understand you.
A young wife...
is a young wife...
and a district councillor...
has to travel around a lot...
which means leaving his house alone...
A ghost is like an angel with a sword.
The fact that Innstetten kept a ghost...
so as not to Iive in a commonpIace house, might be accepted.
It met his need to distinguish himseIf from the crowd.
But to use the ghost as a means of education...
was mean, aImost insuIting.
And she reaIized that this ''means of education''...
was not even haIf the story.
What Crampas had impIied went much further.
AN ARTlFlCE CALCULATED
TO lNSPlRE FEAR.
Heine's writing pulses with life. Above all, he understands love...
and that is the main thing.
But he's not one-sided in this.
What do you mean?
He's not just on the side of love.
Well, even if he were...
there are worse things.
What else is he in favour of?
He's a strong adherent of romance...
which comes close behind love.
Some people regard them as identical.
Major, please excuse my thumbs when l give you the sandwiches.
As long as you don't give me the thumbs down!
At Don Pedro's court, was a dark, handsome Spanish knight...
who wore the Cross of Calatrava on his breast.
This knight, whom the queen secretly loved, of course--
-Why, ''of course''? -Because we're in Spain.
Oh, l see.
This knight had a magnificent hound.
This had all been going on for some time...
and the secret love affair was no longer really a secret.
Unable to bear it anymore...
and because he didn't like the Knight of Calatrava anyway...
the king was not only cruel...
but consumed by envy.
He decided to have the knight secretly murdered...
for his secret love.
l can't say l blame him.
Well, just listen to what follows!
ln some ways, the king was right...
but he went much too far.
Allegedly in honour of the knight's heroic exploits...
he held a banquet.
And there was...
a long table...
at which all the grandees of the empire sat...
with the king in the middle...
Opposite him was the place for the guest of honour...
the Knight of Calatrava.
But he didn't appear, and finally the feast had to begin without him.
There was an empty seat...
an empty seat exactly opposite the king.
Just imagine, as Don Pedro, the king...
was about to rise to express his hypocritical regrets...
that his ''dear guest'' had not appeared...
cries of horror were heard from the servants outside...
and before one knew what had happened...
something raced along the table, sprang onto the chair...
and set a cut-off head at the unoccupied place.
And over the head of the knight, his hound stared...
at the person opposite...
The dog had accompanied his master on his final journey...
and at the moment...
the axe descended...
the trusty animal had seized the falling head.
There he was, our friend...
sitting at the banqueting table...
accusing the royal murderer.
Effi was content...
and gIad they had agreed...
to discontinue their excursions together for the rest of the winter.
When she considered what had been discussed and intimated...
during aII those days and weeks...
she couId find nothing that wouId directIy occasion seIf-reproach.
Was it the major's plan?
Yes. As you know, he was elected unanimously...
to the entertainments committee.
We can look forward to a pleasant winter at the club.
He's ideal for the position.
will he be acting as well?
He declined to do that...
He could play Arthur von Schmettwitz quite excellently.
He's just directing.
All the worse.
All the worse?
Oh, don't take me too seriously.
lt's just a way of saying the opposite, really.
On the other hand...
there's something forceful about the major.
He likes doing things over one's head.
One has to do things the way he wants.
What pleased me most...
was my charming little wife, who turned all heads.
Don't talk like that! l'm vain enough.
Vain enough perhaps...
but not nearly as vain as the others.
-And your 7 beautiful attributes! -Everyone has 7 beautiful attributes.
A slip of the tongue.
Multiply that number by itself!
How gallant you are.
lf l didn't know you, l might be afraid of you.
Or is there something else behind it?
Do you have a guilty conscience?
Have you been eavesdropping?
Sometimes one suddenly realizes...
what a treasure one has.
After all, you might be someone like poor Frau Crampas.
A dreadful woman, unfriendly to everyone.
She's a bit like our Frau Kruse.
l don't know whom l'd choose between the two of them.
l know very well.
There is a difference between them. The major's wife is unhappy.
Kruse's is uncanny.
And you're more in favour of the unhappy?
The name alone...
not in anything...
least of all with women.
not at the gaming table...
but constantly taking risks in life.
One has to keep an eye on him.
l'm glad you told me that.
l shall watch my step with him.
Yes, do that.
But not too much. That's no use either.
Just behave naturally. That's always best.
Best of all, of course...
is to be of steadfast character...
and to have, if l may use such a high-flown expression...
a pure soul.
No doubt, but say no more...
especially things that don't make me happy.
l thought l heard footsteps upstairs again.
Strange, they keep coming back.
And l thought you were joking.
l wouldn't say that, Effi.
But it makes no difference.
As long as one is upright...
one has nothing to fear.
AN ARTlFlCE CALCULATED
TO lNSPlRE FEAR.
If it goes on Iike this, we'II have...
a coId winter and be snowed in.
There are worse things than that.
Being snowed in evokes...
pIeasant sensations, such as protection and support.
That's new to me.
Associations are strange things.
They're based not onIy on personaI experience...
but on things one has heard or just happens to know.
You're a weII-read man, Major...
but there's one poem I suspect you don't know.
It's caIIed God's Wall.
A nice titIe.
What is it about?
It's a modest story and quite short.
In some war, there was a winter campaign...
and a terrified oId widow prayed to God...
to buiId a waII round her to protect her from her country's enemies.
God Iet the house be buried in snow, so that the enemy simpIy marched past.
She feIt as if she were about to faint.
Did you sleep well?
l can't say the same for myself.
l dreamt your carriage fell into the river...
and Crampas was trying to save you.
l have to put it that way.
And he went down with you.
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