|Red Wheels Turning, a First World War alternative history by Hugh Ashton|
Determined to carry out the orders of his chief, Lenin, he is possessed of remarkable strength, combined with a ruthlessness that results in his leaving a trail of cadavers in his wake as he crosses Europe to capture the war-winning secret weapon for the Bolsheviks. Amazingly for such a man, he has never learned to swim, and is frightened of the water, nearly drowning in the Baltic Sea as a result.
Excerpt from Red Wheels Turning
"So I'm looking for some strong able-bodied volunteers to man the lifeboats and help save the lives of those men."His sheer physical size and strength, with a certain degree of low cunning allow him to overcome almost all the obstacles in his path, but he meets his match when confronted by Lieutenant Brian Finch-Malloy of the British Coldstream Guards in a final showdown in a forest outside Moscow.
Several passengers stepped forward, but Kolinski stayed where he was.
"Excellent," said the officer. His eyes met Kolinski's, and he looked Kolinski up and down. "We need a big strapping fellow like you," he said. "Come on."
"Can't swim," mumbled Kolinski.
"Doesn't matter. You'll have a lifejacket, and even if you do fall in, we'll have you out of there in no time at all."
Kolinski still hung back, and a woman's voice cut through the crowd. "It could be you in the water. Shame on you for refusing to help those poor men in there."
"Shame, shame," came the murmur from the crowd. Kolinski flushed. "Oh, very well," he muttered, and stepped forward.
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