What is the plot of "The Interlopers"?

Asked on by bonitta

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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This is the story of two conflicts.  There is a conflict between two men.  They are Ulrich von Gradwitz and Georg Znaeym, two men whose families hate each other.  They are out patrolling some land that they both sort of claim, and it is clear that they want to kill each other.

Then there is a conflict between the two men and nature.  They are caught under a tree that falls on them in a storm.  While they are under the tree, they resolve the conflict between them and agree to be friends.  But the conflict with nature is still unresolved.

At the end of the story, nature looks like it is going to win because a pack of wolves comes and, it appears, is going to eat the two helpless men.

I'd say that the climax to the story comes when the two men make peace with one another.  That means that the part before is the rising action and the part after is the falling action.

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Lori Steinbach | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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"The Interlopers" is a an ironic story about two men who start out as enemies and end up friends--just in time to die.  Their families are literally feuding over possession of some forest land, and each has sworn to kill the other if they ever see one another out hunting in that forest land.  Of course, both are there on a stormy night, and a tree falls over and pins them both to the ground.  Once they battle it out verbally for a bit (not very long, as it's a short, short story), one decides to be the bigger man and offers his wine flask to the other as a token of friendship.  The offer is accepted, and the two men are nearly giddy, figuratively speaking, tripping over one another in the hopes of being the first to offer help to the other.  In the great ironic twist, the shadows they see through the trees are not either one's men.  Instead, they're wolves. 

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jameadows | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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As the story opens, Ulrich von Gradwitz is prowling on his land looking for his mortal enemy, Georg Znaeym. In the time of Ulrich's grandfather, the family of Georg Znaeym had lost possession of the disputed land in a court case, and now Georg has become a poacher and raider on his enemy's lands. On a windy night, Ulrich comes face to face with Georg, who has long been his personal nemesis. 

As the men face each other with rifles, a tree comes crashing down on them, and they are both trapped beneath it. Both men threaten the other with what their men will do if they are the first to arrive at the scene. Suffering and in pain, Ulrich feels his hatred of his enemy draining from him, and he offers Georg his wine flask and promises that his men will help Georg if they are the first to arrive. Georg responds that he is ready to make peace with Ulrich as well. Ulrich proposes that they shout for help, and they do so. They see figures arriving on the horizon, and Ulrich realizes that they have summoned a pack of wolves. 

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arioux | High School Teacher | eNotes Newbie

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You can do this! What's "plot," anyway? It's the story line, right? So the story line (what happened) leads up to some point. You're looking for the what that leads up to the so, what?.

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