Olivia Lewis-Brown

Letters To Lenin - Episode One

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“A specter is haunting Europe - the specter of Communism. All the powers of old Europe have entered into a holy alliance to exorcise this specter; Pope and Czar, Metternich and Guizot, French radicals and German police spies." - Karl Marx, The Communist Manifesto (1848)Bernard Bradshaw along with his crew are caught in a sudden cave in. Within the dark confines of the unstable mine continuing to crumble Bernard finds Malcolm Armstrong helping disabled miner Oliver Spinks through the dirt and mortar. The crew are about to leave when they hear the faint cry of Nikolai Patrenko in the dark. Bernard orders Malcolm and Oliver to go up top and send for help while he journeys back into the mine to rescue Nikolai.
Bernard finds Nikolai trying to dig out his workmate Horace Sampson crushed under rubble. Nikolai is hysterical. Bernard calms Nikolai down and the two leave Horace's body and escape before the mine collapses.
The men tell Nikolai about the pit owner Clemence Reed who supplies cheap and dangerous materials to the mine workers and disregards workers safety for profit. Nikolai meets pub landlord Gregor Griggs who reveals Nikolai’s true identity as an illegal Russian immigrant. Bernard and Nikolai go to tell Nonie Sampson and her daughters of Horace Death.
Nancy is intrigued by Nikolai. He offers to teach her to read and write. Nikolai tells Nancy he is in hiding from Russian Police and uses a secret method to write letters to his comrades back in Russia without the police being able to read them.
Nikolai writes a letter to Aleksandr Ulyanov detailing the lives of his workmates. He tells of Bernard's past as a disgraced boxer, how Oliver Spinks became disabled, Hugo Boyce shameless adultery and obsession with Nancy Sampson and Malcolm Armstrongs respected past on the battlegrounds of the Boer War Transvaal rebellion . We fade out to the furious scratch of a quill on paper.
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