Breaking Stalin

Breaking Stalin

Chapter VI

In all tragedies there must be a victim and a villain.  Unfortunately in our story the victims are numberless, their tragic place in history has been largely forgotten, slighted by chance and circumstance and most of all by our villain, their names have been dumped into the dustbin of history, but their deeds and their very ideals live on.
            Our most important victim’s tale begins in the year 1878 on the 18th of December in a small town in Georgia.  I’m sure the cold was biting that morning as our soon to be born-Soso’s alcoholic father walked to work.  He was a cobbler and this morning had brought bad news.  The fresh snowfall had caused a part of the roof of his workshop to fall in.  Cursing his bad luck, he wandered slowly to the workshop carrying his meager supply of tools.  He arrived to see his apprentice pointing out the small break in the roof to his friend.  Besarion greeted him methodically before deftly climbing the sides of the wooden shelter.  His movements were a little clumsy today; his head was throbbing like a pounding drum.  Normally, he went to work hungover, but today was especially bad.  They had already lost two sons, and his wife’s agony the night before was driving him insane.  He needed a son, a man to carry on his trade after him, for all he knew this could be his last shot.
            The roof was slick; it was iced over underneath the heavy sheet of fresh snow that hovered on the roof like a cloud.  He brushed off the snow around the intrusion trying to gauge the size of the hole.  A voice from underneath of him barked at him in Russian.  He slid softly off the roof landing gently on his feet.  He turned around to see his apprentice holding out the small pieces of wood that had shattered on the roof.  Beso mumbled a quick thank-you before getting back on the roof.  He began hammering away and found he was short a sliver of wood.  He cursed under his breath as he surveyed the rest of the roof for a piece he could cannibalize.  He saw on the corner a small piece jutting out over the edge.  He crawled to the edge like a sloth and began sawing off the corner.  “Just right” he thought to himself.  Just then a boy came running along the path; he paused from his work as the young boy daintily plodded along the beaten path leaving footprints in the prior-night’s snow.  There was something entrancing about the scene.  It made Beso think of his life long gone by; back when he was without care, back before his fiery self rose up in rebellion against his lord.  Back before he spent years in jail.  “Awww yes” he thought to himself “There really was something to be said about being a carefree young boy.”

            The boy approached the house and looked up into Beso’s gaze.  “Sir” the little boy piped “Your wife just gave birth to a son”.  Besarion dropped his saw.

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