Under the Nazi Heel
Excerpt: The Communist
He was tall and thin with a slightly hooked nose and a broad chin. He wore a long woolen coat that could have been military issue without insignia, but then, so did almost everyone. "—what's the password?"
The man looked at Maurice as if he could not believe he had asked something so obvious and stupid. Damn. Was that going too far?
After a long pause, the man said "Tovarisch. Friend.”
Maurice nodded as if in confirmation. "What is your name, Tovarisch?”
The man paused again. "Kravchenko.”
The kettle began to whistle. "Aren't you going to make that tea?”
Making tea gave Maurice a chance to calm down. He worried that he would not be able to find the mugs in Kuritsa’s cupboard, but his instincts were right and he opened the right door the first time.
Pouring water into cups, a familiar action, made him feel more comfortable. He put a mug on the wooden table and Kravchenko sat. “So, what do you need from me?” he asked.
“What did Holovchak tell you?”
“Nothing.” That was true. “Just that you needed my farm.”
“You were supposed to have storage ready.”
That’s interesting. “There’s lots of space to store things around here. What do you need?”
“You were supposed to have underground storage ready.”
“Yes, yes, comrade, don’t worry. What are you storing?”
Kravchenko’s eyes narrowed. “Is it ready?”
“Of course, comrade.” Maurice sat down opposite Kravchenko and sipped his tea.
“It’s not ready, is it? Even after you were specifically instructed.”
“We can get this ready very quickly, comrade,” Maurice said, waving a hand. “But what is it? If I had an idea what we were storing, we would know what to do.”
Kravchenko pushed his chair back from the table. “Who are ‘we’?”
Maurice hoped his shock did not show. “There are more than one … of us here.” To make up for Kravechenko drawing back, he leaned forward. He could feel the gun’s weight on his hip. “What are we getting ready for?”
“You’re wasting my time, you fool.” Somehow, that statement was worse than the fear and stress Maurice had felt all evening. Kravechenko stood and went for the door.
The UPA man with the rifle stepped in from the back room, rifle leveled at Kravchenko. “Don’t move, comrade,” he said.
In a single fluid motion, Kravchenko leaned back, kicked the rifleman in the knee and wrenched the rifle from his hands. The rifleman crumpled to the floor.
The variation in weapon design is a curious thing. Most rifles, including the Russian-made Mosin-Sagant, require the shooter to rotate the bolt lever up, then pull it back and push it forward again to load a round into the chamber. The newer rifles that the Polish military began issuing in the 1930s, however, were similar to the Austrian -made Steyr, which require the shooter to pull the bolt straight back and then forward again, without rotating it around the body of the weapon.
Kravchenko clearly had been trained well. He grabbed the rifle from the Ukrainian guard, turned it in his hands and pulled the bolt lever up.
But the bolt lever on the Polish rifle did not rotate up. Kravechenko pulled it again, eyes fixed on the Ukrainian man rising from the floor.
And then Maurice’s Luger was pressed against his temple. “Drop it,” Maurice said.
Under the Nazi Heel
Walking Out of War, Book 2
For Ukrainians in 1942, the occupying Germans were not the only enemy.
Maurice Bury was drafted into the Red Army just in time to be thrown against the invading Germans in 1941. Captured and starved in a POW camp, he escaped and made his way home to western Ukraine, where the Nazi occupiers pursued a policy of starving the locals to make more “living space” for Germans.
To protect his family, Maurice joins the secret resistance. He soon finds the Germans are not the only enemy. Maurice and his men are up against Soviet spies, the Polish Home Army and enemies even closer to home.
Experience this seldom seen phase of World War 2 through the eyes of a man who fought and survived Under the Nazi Heel. Find it on Amazon.
About the author
Scott Bury just cannot stay in one genre.
After a three-decade career in journalism, his first published fiction was a children’s story, followed by an occult spy thriller. The Bones of the Earth, his first novel, crossed the boundaries between historical fiction and magic realism. He has also published spy thrillers and two police procedurals set in Hawaii.
Under the Nazi Heel is the sequel to Army of Worn Soles. They describe the real life experiences of Maurice Bury, a Canadian living in Ukraine during World War 2.
You can find all of Scott’s books and other writings at his website, The Written Word.
- Read his blog, Written Words
- Find him on Facebook at Scott Bury Author
- Visit his Amazon Author page
- Or follow him on Twitter @ScottTheWriter.