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Plot - The Mouse's Reins.


A realistic 16:9 color image set during World War II in Paris, capturing a poignant moment between two lovers. The scene features a young French woman, clad in a 1940s long coat and beret, embracing a French resistance fighter dressed in a simple leather jacket and dark trousers. They stand on a foggy Parisian street, with the Eiffel Tower dimly visible in the background. The atmosphere is romantic yet somber, reflecting the wartime tension and the intimacy of their brief, stolen moment.

Literary genre of the plot: romance, drama | Paris, 1940


Main characters

Pierre is an orphaned child with a leg defect that does not allow him to walk properly. He grows up in an orphanage run by nuns. He will become the darling of the very sweet Sister Amélie, be taught by the strict Sister Céline, learn the art of painting and cooking with the amusing Sister Paulette, and be watched over by the abbess Sister Sophie. He will not miss a mother, but he will still have the knowledge that he is different from other children.


The call to adventure

Pierre stays at the orphanage even when he exceeds the age allowed. He helps the sisters with small jobs and errands, and in the meantime continues his studies by graduating. The physical defect allows Pierre not to be drafted when France enters the war against Nazi Germany. And at that juncture, it is his sisters who find him employment in one of the capital's most important banks.


Pierre's new job allows him to leave the orphanage and rent a small apartment. For the first time he is outside the walls of the institution. All goes well until the day Pierre spots Gaia, the daughter of banker Jerome Lagarde, and falls in love with her.


The conflict

Pierre is very good at his job and is esteemed by the banker himself, but he begins to make a fool of himself when he tries to get Gaia to notice him. The girl despises and mocks him since the young man is only a humble clerk and is also - according to her - a cripple.


Pierre tries to ingratiate himself with Nadine, Gaia's mother, who forbids him any approach: someone like him is not worthy of her daughter and is perhaps just a dowry seeker. Eventually Pierre desists. He is very disappointed and thinks of leaving the bank, but the abbess makes him return to his purpose.


The key

Nazi troops conquer Paris. Gaia who has studied German entertains herself amicably with the Nazi officers whose power and charm of uniform she appreciates. Gaia's parents understand that the girl is doing wrong, but they are unable to stop her. SS commander Helmut Hegen demands her as a personal translator but with the aim of making her a concubine.


Gaia risks being tortured by the officer and realizes the mistakes she is making. Gaia's refusal arouses the wrath of Hegen, who accuses her of espionage and orders her transfer to a prison camp. Only Pierre's daring intervention manages to lead the girl to safety, who finds shelter with her parents with the abbess. Pierre will not be able to enjoy the appreciation of his beloved Gaia, because he will be killed by Nazi machine guns.


The alternatives

This is a plot that can be easily adapted to different places and times. You can change the origins and sex of the characters and you can intervene in the ending to make it happy. There is great room for maneuvering to modify this story: the important thing is to create social distance between the characters, to make the better-off believe that they are immune from disaster, and finally to bring everyone closer together through the sacrifice of the weakest.

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