| In the Presence of Mine Enemies |
POD: c. 1940
|Type of Appearance:||Direct|
|Children:||Joseph and Magda|
|Relatives:||Leonore (sister), unnamed niece|
Erika Dorsch was the wife of Willi Dorsch, an analyst at Oberkommando der Wehrmacht in Berlin. Both were Aryan citizens of the Greater German Reich. They frequently played bridge with their friends and neighbours, the Gimpels. Unknown to both Willi and Erika, Heinrich and Lise Gimpel were Jews living in secret in the heart of the Reich. She had an elder sister named Leonore and a niece.
Throughout 2010, the Dorschs' marriage began to disintegrate. Erika found much to fault about Willi, and took their bridge games as an opportunity to snipe at her husband. Erika's thoughts also turned to infidelity, and she overtly intimated to Heinrich her desire to begin a sexual relationship, an offer Heinrich flatly refused. Although Willi was oblivious to this, he did initiate an affair with the office secretary, Ilse.
When Erika learned of the affair, she increased her efforts to seduce Heinrich, going so far as to invite him to her sister's flat for lunch. Naively believing Erika's sister would be joining them, Heinrich arrived to find Erika dressed in a revealing robe with a bottle of wine at the ready. Heinrich refused and retreated. Erika responded by throwing a glass of wine at him, and promising to make him sorry.
Erika revenge was a denunciation of Heinrich as a Jew to the SS. She did not know that he was Jewish; she acted maliciously and falsely. However, she had not considered the fact that Heinrich's three daughters would also be targeted by the SS. Distraught, Erika took an overdose of sleeping pills. Her husband rushed her to the hospital in time to save her life.
Erika retracted her accusation. Although Heinrich and Willi remained friends, Erika was no longer welcome in the Gimpel home. The Dorsches' marriage remained strained.