Bullfilter

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Hi, I made this mod. I made the Russian focus tree before the Finnish one, so originally you'd only ever annex Finland. But in the focus tree I made for Finland, I made it so Finland and Sweden could unite. Due to how the code for Anastasia's path was made, you annex the entire nation. This was only my second mod so the code is kind of sloppy in some places. One day I will get around to putting out a patch for that :eek:
Congratulations on what looks like a very interesting mod! :cool: I’m working on one for HOI3, and it’s so much work. Thanks for explaining - the coding is a tough mistress: pity you can’t just tell Siri or Alexa to “do this please”! :D
 
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Bullfilter

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But this is one of the joys of AAR writing... you get to make sense of the stranger moments of gameplay. :D
Yes, I like doing the same - after all, people in history make mistakes and do some inexplicably bad or incompetent things.
 
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Captured Joe

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Congratulations on what looks like a very interesting mod! :cool: I’m working on one for HOI3, and it’s so much work. Thanks for explaining - the coding is a tough mistress: pity you can’t just tell Siri or Alexa to “do this please”! :D
Modding HoI4 is quite doable, it is much more accessible than HoI3!
 
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Nikolai

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Goodness gracious, how Russia is expanding, without many shots being fired! I do wonder, though, how come Oslo, the capital of Norway, became the target for communication about Swedish-Finnish submission. :p
 
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Henry v. Keiper

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Goodness gracious, how Russia is expanding, without many shots being fired! I do wonder, though, how come Oslo, the capital of Norway, became the target for communication about Swedish-Finnish submission. :p

I'll tell you:

Oops.
 

romain3142

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Une belle surprise à avoir! Pour ceux qui sont curieux de savoir comment la Russie a pu manger à la fois la Finlande ET la Suède avec cet événement ...



Oui, ce que [USER = 1384032] @ R0MMEL [/ USER] a dit. :RÉ

Rappelez-vous plus tôt dans ce fil de discussion que R0MMEL a également confirmé que l'union de la Finlande et de la Suède au milieu de la grande guerre civile qu'ils ont eue était en soi un bug impliquant l'arbre de concentration finlandais. Techniquement, le Royaume-Uni de Suède-Finlande n'était pas censé exister à ce moment dans l'arbre de concentration russe. Ainsi, lorsque la Russie demande la capitulation de la Finlande ... cela implique également par accident toute la Suède. Bien sûr, j'ai dû expliquer cela dans le jeu car la Suède-Finlande réalisant que la guerre avec la Russie impliquerait invariablement tout le royaume, plutôt que la Finlande seulement, ainsi que le fait que la Finlande et la Suède s'unissaient en une seule nation et une seule culture. À ce point. (Ce qui, pour être honnête, est ce qui se passait dans le jeu avec leur arbre de mise au point.) Pour mémoire, j'ai vérifié si je pouvais laisser la Suède sortir comme une marionnette ou quelque chose du genre, mais ce n'était pas le cas.

Mais c'est l'une des joies de l'écriture AAR ... vous pouvez donner un sens aux moments étranges du gameplay. :RÉ Rétrospectivement, j'aurais pu utiliser le code de triche de changement de propriétaire et apporter la Suède. Mais ... eh bien, peut-être la prochaine fois.





Peut-être que je ferai un AAR suédois à l'avenir pour compenser cela.

En fait, le premier AAR que j'ai écrit était un AAR HoI1 sur l'invasion du Canada par l'Axe Suède. Eh ... ne pensons pas à celui-là ...



Ouais, je ne peux pas discuter là-bas ...



Curieusement, Chamberlain poursuit encore la politique de l'IA britannique de déconstruire l'Empire à ce stade. Savez-vous quel était l'arbre de mise au point à ce stade du gameplay? Qu'en est-il de la grande guerre en cours en Europe?

Il aidait l'Afrique du Sud à devenir une nation.

Parce que c'est la choisi la plus importante en ce moment.



C'est un peu comme ça que ça s'est passé IRL. Sorte de. L'Union soviétique a englouti la Pologne, des partis de la Roumanie, les États baltes, etc., mais la seule a choisi dont tout le monde se souvient est que l'Allemagne engloutit tout autour de ses frontières. Certes, l'Union soviétique n'a pas annexé la Finlande ET la Suède, mais ...





Ce que le lézard argenté a dit.

Je ne me souviens pas s'il y avait une option pour la guerre quelque part le long de cette ligne (cela faisait un moment que je n'avais pas joué à cette partie du jeu). J'étais cependant préparé à cela. Et comme Wrangel l'a dit dans le récit, la Suède-Finlande n'était vraiment pas prête pour une guerre. Même si mal préparée que soit l'armée russe, une guerre contre la Suède-Finlande aurait probablement joué en leur faveur.



En toute honnêteté, la Russie a probablement une plus grande revendication sur une partie du territoire (à l'exception peut-être de la Suède) que l'Allemagne a certaines de ses revendications, et elle ne l'a pas fait en violant des traités ou des accords comme l'Allemagne l'a fait signalé un envahi le reste de la Tchécoslovaquie. après l'abandon des Sudètes. De plus ... il y a une guerre massive avec l'Allemagne en ce moment en Europe, donc la plupart des pays sont probablement distraits par cela.

À certains égards, c'est probablement providentiel qu'Hitler fasse ce qu'il fait en ce moment. Sinon, les gens pourraient en fait suffisamment se soucier d'essayer d'arrêter Anastasia.



Bien sûr, les Blancs ont également fait de mauvaises choses. C'était l'une des choses que Wrangel combattait contre IRL, en fait. Bien sûr, en temps de guerre, les mauvaises choses sont souvent faites des deux côtés. Cependant, cela n'excuse pas les hauts dirigeants d'un groupe de donner la permission d' assassiner une famille entière . Et quand vous avez lu les raisons données pour le meurtre de la famille du tsar, ils n'ont rien à faireavec des atrocités supposées blanches. Et je n'ai même pas mentionné dans mes écrits les autres meurtres et meurtres commis par les bolcheviks - souvent avec l'accord des hauts dirigeants - et qui, encore une fois, n'avoir rien à voir avec les atrocités ou les crimes commis par la faction blanche. Ajoutez à cela les massacres de masse qui ont eu lieu sous Staline, et il est facile de voir pourquoi l'un des associés de Marx, lors d'une réunion du parti, a agité la main à ceux qui étaient présents et a dit à Marx sans détour que si l'un de ces hommes prenait le pouvoir, il serait bien pire que le tsar ne l'a jamais été.

Quant à l'accusation selon laquelle j'ai dépeint les Blancs comme des «braves patriotes russes» et les communistes comme des «méchants méchants monstres anti-russes» dans mes écrits, j'ai deux choses à dire:

1) Ceci est un narratif AAR. Dans le processus, bien sûr, cela deviendra comme une histoire et aura des héros et des méchants. Malheureusement, c'est la nature de la bête. Et nous devons nous rappeler que l'une des règles du forum AAR est de donner aux auteurs une certaine marge de manœuvre en ce qui concerne l'exactitude historique. Il existe des AAR où Hitler est le personnage principal, ou les généraux allemands sont, en application, les héros de l'histoire alors qu'ils conquièrent la Russie ou l'Amérique et d'autres endroits. Encore une fois, indépendamment de ses convictions politiques, il faut comprendre que cela va être la nature des RAA narratifs.

2) Je pense que tous ceux qui liront cet AAR verront que je n'ai pas dépeint les groupes de manière comique, tout bon ou mauvais. Les bolcheviks étaient prévus comme plus durs et plus susceptibles de cibler les civils que les mencheviks, qui ciblaient principalement l'armée. Trotsky a fait la paix avec la tsarine et les a même aidés à retrouver Staline. Trotsky ne soutient pas le meurtre de la famille du tsar, et je dis même dans un post de suivi que je ne crois pas personnellement qu'il l'approuve. L'une des premières choses qu'Anastasia a dû faire pendant que Tsarina a été de s'en prendre aux soldats corrompus qui exploitaient le peuple. Mikhail, le mari d'Anastasia, était un ancien soldat communiste qui a perdu sa famille sous le tsar Nicolas II et a même failli tirer sur Anastasia pour cela. Yakov Yurovsky, l'homme même qui a commis le meurtre de la famille royale, est dépeint comme un homme aux prises avec les crimes de son passé. Dans les derniers chapitres, le gouvernement de la tsarine a approuvé les assassinats, truqué les élections et (dans ce seul chapitre) a utilisé des menaces militaires pour se frayer un chemin. À en juger par les réactions de mes lecteurs à tous mes messages jusqu'à présent, je pense qu'il est juste pour moi de dire que je n'ai pas dépeint le gouvernement impérial, encore moins le gouvernement militaire qui l'a précédé , d'une manière qui les fait passer pour un tas de goody-two-shoes. Les seules personnes que j'ai dépeintes comme des monstres étaient des personnages historiques qui étaient, assez objectivement, des monstres moraux (par exemple, Lénine, Staline, Sverdlov, Goloshchyokin, etc.). et (dans ce seul chapitre) ont utilisé des menaces militaires pour se frayer un chemin. À en juger par les réactions de mes lecteurs à tous mes messages jusqu'à présent, je pense qu'il est juste pour moi de dire que je n'ai pas dépeint le gouvernement impérial, encore moins le gouvernement militaire qui l'a précédé , d'une manière qui les fait passer pour un tas de goody-two-shoes. Les seules personnes que j'ai dépeintes comme des monstres étaient des personnages historiques qui étaient, assez objectivement, des monstres moraux (par exemple, Lénine, Staline, Sverdlov, Goloshchyokin, etc.). et (dans ce seul chapitre) ont utilisé des menaces militaires pour se frayer un chemin. À en juger par les réactions de mes lecteurs à tous mes messages jusqu'à présent, je pense qu'il est juste pour moi de dire que je n ' ai pas dépeint le gouvernement impérial, encore moins le gouvernement militaire qui l'a précédé, d'une manière qui les fait passer pour un tas de goody-two-shoes. Les seules personnes que j'ai dépeintes comme des monstres étaient des personnages historiques qui étaient, assez objectivement, des monstres moraux (par exemple, Lénine, Staline, Sverdlov,
Oui en acte, désolé au moment où j'ai écrit ce post, je n'avais lu que le prologue, maintenant j'en ai lu plus et en fait ce n'est pas du tout machinéen and like i said my post wasn t a blame i m a great fan of your work literary speaking
 

romain3142

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I'll tell you:

Oops.
And Allied too gave order to kill family ( Dresde Bombing, Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Napalm in Vietnam which objective were to target civilians) so maybe Lenin is a monster but Churchill, Roosevelt , ... too. Even if a bombing is not like the Romanov execution result is the same family annhilied. This is the result of war, it make all of us monsters. Some monsters just know they are and have regrets and other don't and even those you can find excuse to them (Lenine brother was killed by ockhrana, he was excluded from his school because of that,...)
 

Henry v. Keiper

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Henry v. Keiper

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rBKVCB2.png

Chapter 03
Leonid


18 January, 1939

Shortly after Germany declared war on Czechoslovakia, Leonid was sent in by the Okhrana to monitor activities within the nation, and report on how the war was going. It was a lot easier for Leonid than other missions, such as his trip to Britain to monitor the Bolsheviks. He didn’t to pretend to be Czech or Slovak to fit in – he passed himself off as a Russian tourist staying in the area for a while. Russia wasn’t the one at war with Czechoslovakia, so who was to complain about a Russian relaxing in the middle of Prague?

The only complaint he got was from the waitress at the nearby cafe, who lamented to him that he had picked the absolute worst time to sight see. She was a pretty, tall thing with long dark hair and a hooked nose and eyes as raven-tinted as her hair. It was a nice sight to see in the morning when we went down for some coffee and a small breakfast, and she seemed happy to see him. “I live with my mother,” she told him at one point. Marketa was the girl’s name, as he soon learned. “Father has gone east. He was working with an arms manufacturer near the Sudetenland, but now…” she frowned. “I fear we may have to flee to Romania soon.”

“Your family can always go to Russia,” Leonid replied with a smile. “The Empress could use some weapon experts to get the army in better shape – and she could use some prettier girls, no doubt.”

“Oh, hush.”

There was an older gentleman there, too. Marketa told Leonid his name was Josef, and he worked as an accountant in the city. He was a balding man with a stern face and bottle-cap glasses who often sat a table away from Leonid, smoking a cigarette and drinking tea. He paid no mind to Leonid until he learned he was Russian. Suddenly, his eyes lit up, and much of that sternness went away. “Ah, I had a brother in the Czechoslovak Legion,” he explained. “He fought the Germans, then later fought the Bolsheviks. He wasn’t too far from Yekaterinburg when they shot the Tsar and the family.” He shook his head. “Terrible thing, that. It did me good to hear one of the princesses lived, however.” He puffed on his cigarette in thought. “My brother died not long after from a wound he got in the war. Never quite healed. Sad thing, that…”

One morning, in the middle of November, Leonid sat beside Josef and ordered his usual coffee. The agent unfolded the local newspaper and began to read the front page story. It told of a deal that had been reached between Great Britain, Nazi Germany, and Yugoslavia. Hitler had demanded from Yugoslavia the territory of Slovenia, which had formerly belonged to Austria. If these demands were not met, Hitler was ready to go to war. Yugoslavia was asked to return Slovenia to Germany, which Prince Paul, regent for the young Peter II, reluctantly did.

GXnzDkx.png

Josef took notice of the story and shook his head. “What a fool that Chamberlain is. He just wants to keep peace in Europe and make sure the war stays here and in France.”

“I’m surprised the Yugoslavs did it,” Leonid said.

“Look at what happened to us when we said no. The Yugoslavs doesn’t want war with Germany.” Josef tapped the bottom of the page with a wrinkled finger. “Besides, keep reading. Chamberlain made an agreement with them that Britain would monitor and maintain Yugoslav independence. If Hitler goes back on his agreements, Britain will declare war on Germany.”

Over the course of the next two months, Leonid would read the papers in the morning to look for any news from the front. On 25 November, Carlsbad had been taken by German forces, and Plzen was under assault. By 15 December, Plzen too was taken, bringing the German army ever closer to Prague. In the last war, armies advanced by miles over the course of several months, and after horrific amounts of casualties – here, however, success seemed to be measured in weeks, and the Czechoslovakians were losing much more manpower than the Germans.

He could sense the nervousness among the Czechs he had gotten to know. Marketa preferred not to speak on the war at all, and whenever it was brought up, those dark eyes of hers would glimmer with worry. Josef at first seemed confident. “They are luring the Germans into a trap, I am sure,” he said at one point. “They’re slowing them down. They’ll stop them just before Prague, I’m certain of it,” he’d say at another point. “We’ve already fought them this far.” Soon he preferred to just not speak on it at all. Whenever the topic came up, he would just shake his head.

wLF1S89.png

It was on the 27 December that he received a rude wake up call, quite literally, in the form of a loud boom some distance from his hotel. It only took him a moment to realize what it was: artillery. That meant the German army was close to the city now. He got dressed quickly and walked outside, hearing more explosions nearby. Smoke started to rise from the struck areas. There were more booms in the distance, and up ahead, Leonid recognized German bombers flying in formation. They must have been targeting the units defending the outer area of the city.

The first thing he did was head to the cafe, and was happy to see it was unaffected. Marketa, he could tell, was a nervous wreck. Her hands shook as she served him his coffee, and he worried for half a moment if she was going to spill it. Josef was nowhere to be seen. “I don’t know what happened to him,” Marketa replied. “He mentioned the other day of going to Poland. I hope that’s where he is.”

IgGTdII.png

New Years came, but there was little joy for the Czechs Leonid had come to know. War was putting a damper on any potential celebration, with the booms and bombings of Germany artillery and planes continuing deeper into the city. Marketa was a nervous wreck every morning, and when Leonid finally asked what the plans for the cafe were, she gave a nervous smile. “The owner is hoping to keep it open as long as possible but… who knows.” She swallowed hard. “I’m worried about mother. She’s worried about father. If the Germans drive down the middle and split us off from the east… will we be able to get to him?”

Especially bad, however, was what made the front line pages of many newspapers: Italy had joined the war on Germany’s side. Attacks against the French border had already begun in earnest.

CGbuMp2.png

To the north, German attacks continued. Tabor was now under attack, while German troops to the north were pushing down towards the east side of Prague, bypassing Liberec. The defensive line within the Sudetenland, which had seemed strong enough to withstand any German assault, was now slowly become unraveled. The day finally came that Leonid had privately dreaded: when he appeared at the cafe, the door was barred, and a sign declared that it was closed until further notice. Marketa was nowhere to be seen. Suddenly, he wished had asked for an address, or where her father could be contacted at the moment. He just wanted to make certain she and her mother were okay. A few buildings down the way had been bombed out, which only added to Leonid’s fears.

18 January, he woke up to another development: German troops on the streets of Prague.

For 23 days the battle had raged, and now the capitol of Czechoslovakia was in German hands. The government had apparently fled to Bratislava to form a temporary capitol there, and vowed to continue fighting. Leonid spent much of that morning walking about the city to see what the change of ownership meant. He found Nazi flags draped over Prague Castle, the Rudolfinum, the city’s Powder Tower, the towers of the Charles Bridge, and various other landmarks. German personnel carriers were parked within the Old Town Square, and German patrols were on the streets, rounding up what Leonid assumed were either potential government officials who had lagged behind or soldiers in hiding.

Deep down, Leonid felt pity for the people in Czechoslovakia. Whether Czechs or Slovaks, they had all been abandoned by their allies. France had proven ineffective. Romania wasn’t doing a single thing to send troops to assist; during his entire time there, Leonid hadn’t seen one single Romanian soldier, nor had he heard of any fighting between Romanians and Germans. The Czechoslovakians had been left to fight on their own, although Leonid had to admit that fight they certainly did. Considering the war had started back in September, and it had taken the Germans this long to get to Prague, it would be terribly unfair to say that the war was a cakewalk.

What he had to report to Russia was nothing positive. Prague was taken, and the Germans seemed organized and ready to push on through the rest of the nation. It was even worse when he heard that the Italians had seized Marseille from the French. That had absolutely surprised him – he would have thought that the French would have been able to fight off the Italians, let alone keep them from taking one of their most important cities in the south. What was going on with this war?

KKM33JD.png

As things began to calm down in the city, he decided to make his trip back home. Using his contacts and the funds given to him, he secured a ride and began to head deeper into German lands. He hoped to move up and then into Poland, after which he could return to Russia. As he drove away, he tilted the rear view to keep it from giving him a view of occupied Prague.

It would have been too hard on his heart to see the city the way it was now.
 
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Captured Joe

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“I’m surprised the Yugoslavs did it,” Leonid said.

“Look at what happened to us when we said no. The Yugoslavs doesn’t want war with Germany.”
The Serbs probably remember the previous war, where they lost 25 to 30 percent of their adult male population.
 

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Hitler didn't get his blitzkrieg success as he did in OTL. But he seems to go from success to success nevertheless, only slower.
 
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Henry v. Keiper

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The Serbs probably remember the previous war, where they lost 25 to 30 percent of their adult male population.

I actually didn't know about that, but... yes, I'm sure that's also influencing their decision. Sort of like how Britain and France were somewhat hesitant to start another war due to entire generations being wiped out, or various towns losing their entire male population.

Hitler didn't get his blitzkrieg success as he did in OTL. But he seems to go from success to success nevertheless, only slower.

Very true. I was actually thinking a while ago on how it always seems hard to simulate all the variables that go into a war. I've rarely seen a blitzkrieg success in HoI4, at the very least on the level of what you see with Germany's invasion of Poland or the later invasion of France. It's hard to see the OTL in other games as well. For example, there's this MS DOS game called "Shadow President", and it sets up the situation that led to Operation Desert Storm. However, because of the way the war system operates, you basically end up with half a million American troops dying in an invasion of Iraq... something that's completely the opposite of the OTL. And recently I was looking at a Civil War board game that simulates the Battle of Chancellorsville, but part of the rules involves handicapping the Union player for a while to simulate some of the difficulties early in the battle - in other words, it HAS to simulate certain variables in order to make sure the battle happens a certain way, or can be as close to it as possible. It can be difficult to simulate exactly what happens in a given battle.

Any way, random musing.
 
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Leonid continues to be a witness to history - a nice way to personalise it. The Czechs have done very well to resist so long and still be at it. A great pity no other direct help has been available, but par for the course, as per Poland in OTL.

One wonders what Russia will (or won’t) do in reaction, if the buffer zone between it and Germany continues to be reduced after this and France is no longer there to provide a two front war. Unless the Empress is contemplating joining the Axis as well.
 

Henry v. Keiper

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Leonid continues to be a witness to history - a nice way to personalise it. The Czechs have done very well to resist so long and still be at it. A great pity no other direct help has been available, but par for the course, as per Poland in OTL.

I was actually pretty disappointed with the Romania AI here. I feel like if they had sent troops, the Czech AI might have stood a chance against the German AI at the Sudetenland. Or at the very least, the advancement would have gone a lot slower. It pretty much did become a bit like Poland in the OTL - only it was more frustrating because of the decent job the Czechs are actually doing.
 
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Romania is probably worried about a resurgent Russian Empire breathing down its Bessarabia...
 
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Henry v. Keiper

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Romania is probably worried about a resurgent Russian Empire breathing down its Bessarabia...

Hey now, Russia hasn't tried anything...

...yet.
 

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France now stands alone against the onslaught of the Axis powers. Romania meanwhile seems far more interested in keeping to their internal borders. Chamberlain's constant appeasements is gonna bite Britain in the ass eventually, especially since they seem to be underequipped in dealing with the Nazi peril.
 

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rBKVCB2.png

Chapter 04
Alexander


25 February, 1939

When the car came to a stop, an officer walked over to the passenger door, opened it, and saluted. Alexander stepped out and returned the salute, then adjusted his clothes. He was wearing a smart uniform that had been granted him, bearing the rank of a colonel. It made him feel silly all over, because he knew, deep down, he wasn’t truly a colonel. He was an “honorary colonel” to the 28th Udarnaya Division, which meant little more than visiting the troops every now and then and keeping their spirits up, showing them that the Tsarina’s family truly cared about them. Yes indeed, it meant little – after all, Olga was an honorary colonel as well.

After making certain his tunic was all set, he walked over to the nearby building, marked on the outside with the rank of a general. When he entered the command building, he was greeted at the desk by a young major. The man, upon recognizing him, immediately stood up. “Your highness. A pleasure to see you! I hope you are well.”

“I am well, yes.” Alexander took off his cap and ran his fingers through his hair. He mused for a moment that he would soon need a haircut. Those were often provided within the palace. “Is General Pokrovskiy here?”

“Yes, your highness, he’s in his office. He refuses to go home, even though he looks miserable. He hasn’t been well, I’m afraid.”

2XflLNB.png

“Ah. I would like to see if, if that is alright.”

“Yes, it is most alright.” The major walked over and knocked on the door. A muffled voice called out from the other side, after which the major opened the door and motioned to Alexander. “You may go on in, your highness.”

Alexandered nodded a thanks, then went to the door and walked into the room. The door clicked behind him.

There, seated at a desk, was Viktor Pokrovskiy, commander of the 28th Udarnaya Division. When the general turned to look at him, Alexander immediately froze in his tracks. The first thing he noticed were those hawk-like eyes which stared right at him – no, seemed to stare right into him. Their color was cold and ice-gray, which only added to the shock of his first glance. All this, despite the fact that the man was sick. His skin was a bit paler than was normal, and some sweat had built around his temples. He held up a handkerchief and coughed into it, before standing to attention.

“Your highness,” he replied. He spoke with a commanding tone that demanded to be respected – even though he had followed proper protocol.

“G-General Pokrovskiy,” Alexander remarked. He immediately realized he had stuttered and cursed himself. Not a good start. “It is a pleasure to meet you.”

“And a pleasure to see you well. Forgive my state, your highness.” He coughed again, then smirked. “Or should I refer to you as colonel?”

Alexander felt a bit of blood rush to his cheeks. Another harsh reminder that he was, in fact, merely an honorary colonel. “Your highness will do.”

“Very good.” He coughed again, then sat down in his chair. “What brings you to my office?”

“I wish to make a personal request of you, General Pokrovskiy.” Alexander inhaled deep a moment. “I wish to ask you to request permission that I join your ranks.”

To Alexander’s surprise, no emotional change came from Pokrovskiy’s eyes. He didn’t lift his eyebrows in surprise, he didn’t widen his eyes in shock, he didn’t curl his lips in condescending laughter or mild amusement. No… he just stared at him. It unnerved the tsarevich, for once again the hawk-like nature of the general’s eyes revealed itself. It was as if he were studying Alexander, reaching into his mind, trying to see what he was thinking.

At last, the general spoke. “What are you hoping for? Colonel? General? My personal aide?”

“Whatever rank you will suffice. I will lead a platoon, if need be.”

Once again, the general made no statement. Those eyes of his continued to stare into Alexander’s. At last he gave a great cough, and said, “What if you die in battle?”

“Then it as fate for me to die in battle.”

Pokrovskiy seemed to consider those words a moment. “Fate is often strange.” More coughs. “I was trained to be an aviator in Sevastpol. Did you know that? I commanded planes in the war. When the Civil War broke out?” The general chuckled. “I was in charge of an army unit. Now look at me – I’m commanding tanks.” The mirth left his eyes now. “Many complained because I hung prisoners. They were Bolshevik prisoners, mind you. Rabid animals, past all reasoning. They understanding nothing but destruction. You know what they did to your mother’s family. Lenin himself ordered that – what do you make of that? When the head is sick, where goes the body? Besides…” Pokrovskiy pursed his lips in thought. “A hanging Bolshevik animates the landscape…”

A chill ran up Alexander’s spine. What sort of Russia had been the Russia of the Civil War? It was bad enough to hear of the murder of his aunts and uncle, his grandmother and grandfather, all of them killed in cold blood when they served no real threat to the Bolsheviks… what else had gone on within the country?

“What makes you so eager to join the military?” Pokrovskiy asked.

“I… well I see the way the world is going, and I feel powerless to do anything. I look at Spain, and see how there are still three factions fighting one another, even after all this time.”

Pokrovskiy nodded. “The Republicans are pushing back. No sign of an end soon. And the Communists are helped by some Bolshevik expatriates… I hope the Falangelists or the Republicans hang the whole lot of them.”

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“And I see the war that Germany has started. I look at the battles in Czechoslovakia, and see them fighting with no end. Did you hear about the heroic stand some of them took?”

“Ah yes, the Battle of the Liberec Pocket, as some are calling it. Five Czech divisions. They were surrounded on 25 January. Surrendered 15 February. Twenty-two days, holding out, even as the Germans pushed the front lines ever way from them. That’s almost as long as it took the Germans to take Prague.” The general coughed. “Good soldiers, wasted.”

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“They shouldn’t be wasted. And now I see Italy invading France, and now they have their eyes set on Yugoslavia. Germany and Italy will declare war on them soon, won’t they?”

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“They would be fools to do so – Britain shall have none of that.” Pokrovskiy shook his head. “But what matters are these to you? What will do you by joining the army?”

“Because I cannot believe Russia will be at peace forever.”

Once again, Pokrovskiy went silent. Once again, those eyes seemed to probe around Alexander’s very soul. Then, at last, a grin crept across the general’s lips. “And perhaps, in that retrospect, you are much brighter than many military officers four times your age.” The general coughed. “I cannot see Hitler remaining at peace with the Empire for long. No… we have land he could use, and I hear he has no love for the Russian people, let alone the Tsarina. If we do not go to war with him… there may come a time when he will come to war with us.” The hardness of his stare returned as he fixated himself on Alexander. “You understand, your highness, that the army is not playtime with your friends. And war is not all parades and drill marches.”

Alexander felt his hands balled into fists. “General… I’ve been held to the ground by two Bolsheviks and made to watch a gun aimed at my mother… nothing will scare me.”

Pokrovskiy’s brow furrowed, and for a moment, Alexander worried he was about to get a gentle rebuke. Then, in a low voice, the general asked, “It took two Bolsheviks to hold you down?”

Alexander nodded.

The general stood up again. With a cough, he walked over and patted the boy on the shoulder. “I shall write my recommendation. If I had more soldiers like you during the Civil War, it may well have ended sooner.”

Alexander grinned. In the spirit of excitement, he suddenly snapped his shoes together and saluted. “Thank you, general!”

Pokrovskiy waved his hand and coughed again. “Not yet, not yet. There’ll be plenty of time for that.”
 
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TWR97

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The heir to the Empire leading a platoon of men is sure to strengthened the morale of the troops, but yeah the General is right, there's a very likelihood that Alex might get killed or worse, captured. By the way I don't know if this ever mentioned in previous updates or I skipped over it but whatever happened to Kolchak? Reading the focus trees for the Empire and I saw his name in some of em, so I take it he's somewhere around?
 

Crimson Lionheart

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Fate works in mysterious ways. Here is hoping that Alexander doesn't suffer a terrible one.