One of the lesser-known pieces of Selman-Troytt
history concerns Jonah's ruthless exploitation of his daughter
Sent undercover to Moscow to act as an agent provocateur
to aid his corporate expansion
she was forced to subsist on crusts when the unexpected theft
of her stock of carrier pigeons left her out of contact with
her father for three years.
He made no attempt to find her. "I told her to make contact
only if she had something interesting to report,"
later say in his own defence.
Alone, starving, homeless and living on forged papers
under the name Vera Bellendoff, she was enormously grateful to fall
upon the proffered mercy of Pushkin Leminski-Sabriakov, a paper-bag
folder from the poorer quarter of the city. "She was so hungry
she spoke to me,"
he said ecstatically, "even though I am
a complete nonentity. I knew then that we would always stay together
as long as she was never well-fed. I offered her some bread, but
only a small piece, and then took her home to meet my mother."
After the Bolshevik revolution, they married and her rations were
supplemented with occasional meat morsels. In 1918, communication
with the family was re-established and Pushkin was offered a highly-paid
executive position by Jonas
. However, after only two weeks he reverted
to his old trade and took 'Vera' into the obscurity of the Russian
Steppe. "I am happier with paper,"
he said, "because it
cannot break when I hold it."
Details of the next stage of Selman-Troytt foreign expansion