I’m Free (Hans Castorp and Madame Chauchat)

But there was one dream that Hans Castorp dreamed twice that night, and it was exactly the same both times. It came the second time toward morning. He was sitting in the dining hall with its seven tables when the glass door banged shut louder than ever, and in came Madame Chauchat, wearing her white sweater, one hand in her pocket, the other at the back of her head. Instead of proceeding to the Good Russian table, the ill-mannered woman walked soundlessly up to Hans Castorp and silently extended her hand for him to kiss – not the back, but the palm. And Han Castorp kissed her hand – her unrefined, slightly broad hand with its stubby fingers and jagged cuticles. And once again he felt sweeping through him, from head to foot, that sense of dissolute sweetness that had risen up inside him when he had tried out what it must be like to be free of the pressures of honor and to enjoy the unbounded advantages of disgrace – and he experienced that sweetness again in his dream, except that it was overwhelmingly sweeter…

—Thomas Mann, The Magic Mountain

I’m shaking the past
Making my breaks
Taking control
If that’s what it takes
I’m Free
Heaven Helps The Man Who Fights His Fear
Love’s the only thing that keeps me here
You’re the reason that I’m hanging on
My heart’s staying where my heart belongs…

–Kenny Loggins, I’m Free (Heaven Helps The Man)

I'm Free

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