Most people in this timeline know or know of the cold war. The fear that something will happen, but never did, living in constant dread of war at any moment. Well, I may, or may not have stopped a war from happening, all for my desire to meet people. While browsing through random books on my shelf I came across the cold war. After a few too many I decided to go back in time to 1964 and speak with Vladimir Semichastny, head of the KGB at the time. This I later found out would influence the entire outcome of the war. Stopping Khrushchev who was in power at time announcing Vladimir as his successor, which would have lead to the war in 1989. It was a freezing day in Moscow, I really wish I picked a time where the wind didn’t feel like tiny knives running across my exposed flesh. After, many years of shitty Russian television and some tapes, I was able to pull off quite the performance in fluent Russian. I decided to go with the disguise of KGB officer, might I add I am quite appealing in said uniform.
I read through numerous autobiographies of Vladimir. These gave me the information of where to find him in a place he could be approached and reasoned with, plus the added fact that I did not have the proper papers to get past even the stupidest guard to meet him in a ministry building.
I found Vladimir in a small dive. No, to call this place a dive would be an insult to other dives. It was a plain and simple shit hole. He was at the bar drinking by himself. The way he explained this bar was explained it was nothing like what laid before me. The smell of piss and smoke filled the air. I sat two stools away from him. Ordered what I believed to be vodka, but was simply paint thinner with a touch of water in it for flavor. I drank this, hiding my wince the best I could. Vladimir caught my bluff and chuckled. He ordered me another on and the “KGB tab”. The bartender chuckled at this. I thanked him in Russian and drank it. This one seemed to be lacking the water additive. We got to talking about the Motherland, how he’s a brother through and through. He asked me where I was from and how I became an officer at such a young age. His eyes became sharp beads and looked right through me. I made some lie about being from Moscow, spending hours at night reading Karl Marx and military tactics when I was a child. He laughed and called me a bookworm, I blushed a bit. I asked him who he was; he introduced himself using the words great and magnificent a lot. This appeared to be his favorite subject. So I continued on this topic, we had some laughs. He went into small details about his childhood, how it was hard and how it made him tough. I brought up the embarrassment with Barghoorn. His smile melted away faster than snow in the sun. I was afraid I touched a nerve that I couldn’t come back from. He looked into his drink and looked back at me. This is the point where the shield that was his pride slipped away and I saw the man that was Vladimir.
After two or maybe three more paint thinners, he admitted he was wrong. How the Barghoorn mess-up was his wish to gain fame and favor. I told him how it’s natural for a man of his grandeur to want such things. I told him of the plans by Brezhnev to become the successor of the USSR. He said he was aware of these and the KGB has been keeping their eye on him. We spoke of the large movement that was dwelling within the party, how it was best to be left alone. I was holding his shoulder now; he slightly leaned into to it. I explained to him how some words are better off never said. He said he understood but asked how I could betray such a great leader like Khrushchev, the man that brings bread to my table and spirits to my belly. I explained to him, that it wasn’t betrayal; it was out of respect for the great man. Saying that made me vomit in my mouth, I swallowed and chased it with some more vodka. I could see him agree with me, he talked about how frail he seemed at times. The great motherland deserves a man of strength, a man of power. He was standing now, his face was red and he was showing the youth of his spirit. I stood up with him, we drank, we hugged.
He said he needed to get back to his misses. Though he had the opposite idea, he invited me to his house. I declined; Vladimir promised that his wife wasn’t that bad looking. We shared a laugh; I told him I could not for I had my own wife to get to. We shook, then hugged and walked into the cold Moscow night. I made sure to walk in the other direction. It was too damn cold. I take out my device and head back.