"General Olensheim, sir?"
The German turned around. A tall, thin, skeletal Norwegian man was standing there. He didn't look so much old as ages prematurely. His skin hung loosely and was wrinkled, and his face was like a hatchet. He did not look so much ugly as handsome but broken after being wronged.
"I have heard about your chancellor. I wish to express my sorrow to you."
"Thank you," Olensheim said, and turned to go.
Katarina von Baden had been killed during the taking of Berlin. The invading Eastern Army had brutally murdered her along with hundreds of other loyal Germans. They had done it as an example to remaining Germans not to start trouble. The Easterners were brutal and were not interested in justice, but they definitely kept the peace when they were not making war.
Olensheim turned back around.
"At the very beginning of the war, before the Coalition had been formed, I was aboard a ship disguised as a fishing ship. An Eastern Bloc submarine attacked my ship. It was commanded by the leader of the Eastern navy, First Admiral Johann Joniec, who at the time was only a captain."
"Yes, I've heard of Joniec. An opportunist," Olensheim said, "He betrayed Poland to the Easterners so he could take a place of power."
"And he has indeed taken it," continued the Norwegian, "When Joniec attacked my ship he killed many of the crew and officers, including the captain, and left me for dead. I managed to right myself before I could drown and floated for a long time unconscious on a piece of wood from my ship.
"When I finally woke up I began to swim with the plank of wood. I had no idea what direction I was going in, I just swam. Finally, when I thought I could go no further and that I would die right there, I saw a great white vision come sailing towards me. I thought it was a specter or ghost that had come for me, so I started paddling away. It turned out to be a German ship. The German navy saved my life."
"What's your name?"
"I am Captain Yost Lauritz of the submarine Olaf V. Sir, I want to know when the German army is planning to retake Germany."
"Because I want to go with it."
Olensheim shook his head.
"No, no, captain. Norway hasn't gotten involved in this war, and with good reason. Germany has to deal with her own problems."
"I'm not talking about Norway. I'm talking about the Olaf V. I've hand picked my entire crew. They're all Germanophiles for one reason or another, and they are all the finest officers in the Norwegian navy. I want to come with you, general, and so do the men on my submarine. I want to repay my debt to Germany. I want to get revenge on Johann Joniec, the dirty traitor, may he rot in Hell."
Olensheim could see the glitter in Lauritz's eyes that came only from a man seeking one thing: vengeance. It was a thirst that could be slaked in only one way and could not be denied. General Bruno Olensheim took the man's offer.
"Manuscripts don't burn"
- Mikhail Bulgakov
Hi, I'm horror and science fiction author Steve Kozeniewski (pronounced: "causin' ooze key.") Welcome to my blog! You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Amazon. You can e-mail me here, join my mailing list here, or request an e-autograph here. Free on this site you can listen to me recite one of my own short works, "The Thing Under the Bed."
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