Thursday, February 09, 2006

Blue and white striped pajamas XI

THE FLAME ESCAPES
Coming over on the ferry from Jutland the Flame learned that the Lemon had fallen.

He went directly to see his friends the Bomhoffs who were hiding out in style at the Bellevue Hotel north of the city. The situation was grave but the Flame was neverthe-less composed. The Bomhoffs tried to persuade him to come to a safe house with them, but his plan was to go back to Jutland.

The next day he had meetings in the city to this end. He later met up with Lis Bomhoff for lunch at the National Museum café. Afterwards, feeling reasonably safe, they decided to enjoy the exhibition.

The two of them walked around in silence, each lost in thought, until the Flame started talking about the future. As always he talked about the hotel he wanted to run. Everything will be first class, he joked, all the doors will have shooting bolts, and for dessert we will serve ice bombs.

That evening they had dinner at the Bellevue. The Flame now knew for certain that the Lemon had taken all his weapons with him in the shootout two days earlier. All he had to defend himself was a cyanide capsule Lis Bomhoff had aquired from "the Chemist". After dinner he therefore telephoned a friend, director Nyegaard, and it was decided that they all should go for coffee at Nyegaard’s beachfront villa. Because of the rain they took a taxi.

Nygaard could only supply the Flame with a small calibre handgun, which he put in his coat pocket. The group then had coffee with Nyegaard and his wife. At 10 pm they were just getting up to leave when the doorbell rang. They all looked at each other. When no one came to answer there was a violent kick at the door and a shout of: Aufmachen! The Flame jumped out of his chair and ran upstairs. After a few moments Nyegaard said to the others: I have to open the door.

The Germans came pouring into the house. Someone had leaked. The Gestapo men knew exactly what they were looking for and therefore took every precaution. Using the women as a shield they started searching the villa.

Trying to escape the Flame had opened a second floor window only to find that the house was surrounded.

What was there to do? He fired his pistol out the window at the Gestapo until the magazine was empty. Click, click, click. As they stormed the room he ingested the cyanide.

Was he still conscious when they dragged him down the stairs? The group in the dining room could hear his head banging against every step coming down: Milch, milch, schnell!

The Germans were in a rage. They wanted him alive. What this man could tell them under torture would be priceless. Desperately they poured milk into his lifeless body, but it was too late. The Flame had cheated them one last time.

The men were tied up with electrical cord and taken away. They were going to the camps. Mrs. Nyegaard was given 30 minutes to get her two sons dressed, then the house was blown to bits.

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