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A shell-shocked Afghanistan war hero named Ivan Skryabin (Mikhail Skryabin) spends his days stoking the fire in a giant coal furnace. When he isn’t tending the flames, he keeps busy with other activities. He works on a historical novel. His adult daughter Sasha (Aida Tumutova) comes to visit. Local kids come to gaze at the flames. Gangsters, including a former Army sergeant (Aleksandr Mosin) and a sniper known as Bison (Yuri Matveyev), drop by to add special kindling to the fire.