Dancing Suite, part 2: The Consequences of Flight, 7/?

Dancing Suite, part 2: The Consequences of Flight, 7/?

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The Consequences of Flight (7618 words) by Tournevis
Chapters: 7/?
Fandom: Murdoch Mysteries
Rating: Not Rated
Warnings: Creator Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings
Relationships: William Murdoch/James Pendrick
Characters: William Murdoch, James Pendrick, Julia Ogden, Inspector Brackenreid, Georges Crabtree, James Gillies, Dr. Roberts (Murdoch Mysteries), Thomas Edison, Auguste Lumière, Gustave Eiffel, Marcel Guillaume, Antoine Lumière, Alphonse Bertillon
Additional Tags: A host of OCs - Freeform, A host of historical figures, Diary/Journal, Fake Academic Essay, Historically Accurate, Bycicles
Series: Part 2 of The Dancing Suite

The following is taken from a recently defended Master’s cognate in History entitled « The Consequences of Flight : The Rediscovered Diary of a Canadian Homosexual in the Late-Victorian Era. »

The Murdoch Diary, part 2:


29 March and 2^nd^ April 1900

29^th^ March, Thursday.

The last 13 days have been hectic. As planned, we stayed in Cherbourg over night in a very modest hotel where we took two rooms. Cherbourg is lovely once outside the Harbour (which is massive for such a small town) and its industrial quarter (which is as dirty as anywhere). James spent most of the night and the next day there on the telephone while I took the sights. The Basilica is a lovely but timeworn 15^th^ century building^1^. So many buildings here are twice, thrice as old as anything in Canada. It is humbling.

James busied himself telephoning with brokers of his acquaintance. He worked to divest himself of his Paris apartment near the Jardins du Luxenburg^2^ [sic.] and to transfer the account he held there under his there and move the money to another under our new identity. His plan was for us to secure a small apartment for us in a more modest arrondissement giving us anonymity. It was good plan, which unfolded without problem, though it took more time than we were comfortable with. His apartment was sold in eight days, and the next day we took possession of a small 3^rd^ floor apartment in a 4-floor building on a good street in the quarter of La Chapelle^3^. It is all that we need and I am already quite attached to it. Though it is immensely larger than my rooms back in To before I began sharing my life with James, it is quite modest. We have two small bedrooms and a common room with a stove and a small table. All in all it is smaller than the music room back home in Toronto.

Our representation at the Police Prefecture^4^ went well. The officer did not doubt out documentation and we have the necessary residence permit. Our stay here is not in question.

We have not yet secured employment and that is a worry, but we have transportation. We purchased two used bicycles. They are ugly old things but they serve us well enough. We have fixed a few of our neighbours's bicycles, for small compensations, after we were seen fixing ours. We charge less than the nearest mechanic, evidently. James says that such exchanges are the only way to make friends as rapidly, other than to own a dog. We already are known as Les Canadiens.

There are only so many bicycles to repair. I am fairly versatile, but James is not. For all his scientific knowledge and engineering genius, he as no talent for a physical occupation. To wit, he posted advertisements in the La Croix^5^ and the Figaro^6^ as a private tutor in English, German and the sciences. He says it is better to broaden the field buy choosing a conservative Catholic newspaper and a liberal paper. He knows Paris better than I do, even as my French is better than his. He is getting better by the day. As for me, I have what I think is an interview at the Banque de Paris et Pays-Bas^7^ for an entrance lever accountant. The letter calls it an examination. For this, I have to thank our new neighbour Mme M (who lives on ground floor). She is an elderly lady, a lovely woman with obvious breeding but little money, who took a shine to us immediately. She says that James reminds her of her late husband whom she lost in the troubles of '48^8^. She told me of the openings at the Banque.

In anticipation for the examination, I finally bought myself a hat. I lost mine in To and had been wearing on of James' more sedate ones. I do not mind wearing his clothing. It is in fact quite pleasant, but there is nothing more intimate than a hat.

I had read that Spring in Paris was beautiful. It is true that the weather is lovely, but I find Paris unaccountably noxious. I am shocked. Many buildings on our street do not have plumbing and their facilities are in the courtyard. Some of our neighbours don't use them at night and empty chamber pots in the street every morning. A sight I had not witnessed since my youth in New Brunswick. We share facilities with Mr. R on our floor.

2^nd^ April 1900, Monday.

I started at the Bank this morning. I am one of a dozen accountants on a floor of desks. Our role is to verify records books, flag mistakes, but not to ever posit a cause for any discrepancy, nor to correct them. I am only a Vérificateur^9^. If a column is incorrect, we are to flag it by inserting an annotated bookmark and send it up the Correcteurs^10^. The pay is slim, I calculate that it is equivalent to what I made as a constable, but it is a salary and there is room here for advancement. My supervisor has already told me "Vous irez loin^11^". As of today, James has not found any clients.

  1. Basilique Sainte-Trinité, a gothic building finished in the mid-15th century, on foundations of previous churches dating as far back as the 9^th^ century.

  2. The Jardin du Luxembourg, a public park in the Quartier Latin in the 6^th^ arrondissement. Built in 1612, originally the park was the private garden of the Palais du Luxembourg (which now houses the French Senate). The entire neighbourhood is expensive and sought after.

  3. In the 18^th^ arrondissement in the North end of Paris, the Quartier de la Chapelle was originally a working-class village absorbed in the Parisian expansion in 1860. It remained a primarily working-class neighbourhood in 1900, well outside tourist attractions.

  4. Since 1870, the law requires that any foreigner wishing to take up permanent residence within Paris city limits must, within 15 days of arrival, declare their intention at the Passports and Foreigners Office at the Parisian Police headquarters, then and now situated on the Island of la Cité in the 1^st^ arrondissement, at 36, Quai des Orfèvres. After an examination of identification documents and forms, one received a residency permit good for one year. The process has little changed to this day.

  5. La Croix, a daily French Catholic newspaper, founded in 1883.

  6. Le Figaro, a daily French newspaper, founded in 1826. It has historically showed nationalist centre-right leanings. Decidedly less liberal than Pendrick realized.

  7. Also known as Banque Paribas, it was an investment institution, founded in 1872, and headquartered at 3, rue d'Antin in the 3^rd^ arrondissement. In the early 1900s, it was the sight of a few financial scandals. It merged with the Banque nationale de Paris (BNP) in 1999 to become BNP-Paribas.

  8. France was the site of two political revolutions in 1848, both centred in Paris, though similar political upheavals occurred all over Europe that year. In February, a popular nationalist and republican movement that successfully ended the constitutional monarchy of Louis-Phillipe and led to the creation of the Second Republic under the leadership of the bourgeois classes. By June, months of economic uncertainty, wealthy citizens having massively chosen to empty their bank accounts, leads to closures and massive unemployment. Unrest spreads as a larger proportion of the working classes turn from the existing government, leading to outright insurrection on 20-25 June. Massive repression ensues, leading to thousands of deaths, tens of thousands wounded and nearly ten thousand exiled to Algeria.

  9. Literally, "checker."

  10. Literally, "corrector."

  11. "You will go far."

Dancing Suite, part 2: The Consequences of Flight, 8/?

Dancing Suite, part 2: The Consequences of Flight, 8/?

Dancing Suite, part 2: The Consequences of Flight, 6/?

Dancing Suite, part 2: The Consequences of Flight, 6/?

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