SCENE FIVE (V)
“так и быть”
Pronunciation: Tak i-BYT’ Meaning: so be it
“SO BE IT!”
For the record there has never been such a thing as an independent Ukraine. It’s always been a part of Russia, before the Golden Horde. The U.S.S.R. was just a bizarre type, a red branding of the Russian Empire. The Russian Federation, then, is just the latest brand. People with the contradictions of wild autocracy and enduring serfdom in the blood. A race of wiley people!
Set back in Bila Tserkva Oblast, U.S.S.R. Little blonde and gigging, wide-eyed Yelizaveta Aleksandrovna Perechenova was born at the end of the U.S.S.R in the Ukrainian City of Bila Tserkva Oblast on Messidor 2nd,1987. The rest is all misinformation. Gypsy legends and mere ignorant speculation. The seemingly miraculous particulars surrounding her allegedly virgin birth were manyfold and are to this day recounted. Her mother Tanya Ivanova seemed to have reversed in age by ten years over the course of the pregnancy. When she finally gave birth to her first child she bore the resemblance to a girl in her late teens. Not a woman approaching nearly thirty-four. Sasho’s closest men patted him on the shoulder and told him, ‘very, very well played.’ But honestly, at that stage, he not even gotten his ‘dick wet’.
“Is that what you say in American?”
The second highly strange miracle occurred shortly after little infant Yelizaveta’s birth. All the animals in all of the forests surrounding Bila Tserkva Oblast began to show up at the city hospital. So congested with various fauna wandering about the city that a whole task force of Red Army men from Kyiv were needed to attempt removal of this glut of birds and bears and deer as well as animals that the authorities in the Ministry of Social Ecology had long thought were rendered extinct. These animals seemed drawn to the hospital and for a whole lunar month after little Yelizaveta’s birth they were drawn to the family dacha of the Perchevney family to the south a day’s journey from the city.
The third strange miracle was that infant Yelizaveta was not only able to speak Russian within the third month of her infancy but by her third year Americano English, Castile Spanish, Old High Ivory, and a bizarre dialect of French called Ayitian Creole spoken exclusively on the Caribbean island ‘Republic of Palmares’ also called Hispaniola. So marvelous was this behavior of an infant which spoke multiple complex foreign languages that Alexander and Tania Ivanova agreed to conceal this from the world and hide the girl on a dascha as long as possible so no knowledge of this genius might alert the proper authorities to auspicious comings and goings which might result in the borrowing of their prodigious infant. Although the phenomenon of animals and birds flooding the forests and airspace of the dascha made a clandestine upbringing quite hard to arrange.
The fourth miracle occurred at Yelizaveta’s fourth birthday when she turned to her mother and said that as long as the family stayed happily in Bila Tserkva, no one in that city would ever die. So it was for a time of around two years.
In 1989 the Soviet Union began to completely unravel. The despotic red dream crumbled country by country and the quality of living markedly dropped off. Life, as they understood it in relation to the ‘Dictatorship of the Proletariat’, came to an inglorious end. There was not one instance of reported death in a hundred-mile radius of Bila Tserkva Oblast though for the two years leading up to the fall of the Berlin Wall. During this time Alexander was away from the family for extended periods of time. As the only Ivory left in Bila Tserkva his admittance to the inner Party was highly unorthodox. Also, his admittance to Medical College and his marriage to Tanya Ivanova who came from a prosperous Ruus family of Slavic Russian intellectuals close to the local seats of Communist power in Kyiv. To court, win and impregnate Tanya had been a complicated and also costly venture. Men lined up longer than the ration lines of the 19080’s for the chance to date the daughter of this local Party boss. Alexander was not only a half Ivory by paperwork but from a family that had devolved slowly from yeshiva benchers to raw smuggler highway people and then back into lazy migrant Rabbis.
By forging a passport and bribing several dozen people Alexander was able to change his ethnic designation from “Ivory” to “Bulgarian” and then later with more bribes to “Russian”. And thus was able to arrive in Kiev at age 18 to begin his medical training. It was there in university that he encountered the affluent and ravishing daughter of a party boss. Ms. Tanya Ivanova who was studying engineering in the same college. After a lengthy and tumultuous courtship he gave her a tiny watch encased in a gold heart. He said that if she ran away with him to the Sakhalin Soviet upon completion of their studies, an island to Russia’s far east past Siberia, north of Japan then they would one day escape to Illubador and eventually to America as soon as the Cold War ended in seemingly inevitable capitalist victory. This was the end of the eighties and the writing was written clearly on the Berlin wall. One night she secretly packed her bags and joined him in a waiting car and they finally eloped in in the Spring of 1984.
He told her that by the time the watch stopped running they would be in Amerika and by the time it started up again they’d never want for anything again. They barely made it as far as the city limits. Goons in blackcaps in the employ of her father Ivan Ivanovitch stopped them at a checkpoint. They beat Alexander rather badly. They returned a crying distraught Tanya to her father and threw the covert Ivoryish doctor Alexander Perchevney into a jail for special prisoners who committed crimes that were handled in the cold and quiet.
The night of this attempted elopement and calamity the father of Tanya, Ivan Ivanovitch had a terrible dream. He dreamed of an army of many of thousands of four-foot Mayans parachuting out of the sky and attacking Bila Tserkva in an effort to rescue the young Alexander. He dreamed of the strange days of nightmare and plague about to wreak havoc on all of Kiev and the whole Soviet Socialist world if necessary should the detention of his daughter’s lover go on. In the dream his daughter Tanya fell into some inexplicable coma and for each day of Alexander’s captivity ten men disappeared without a trace. Then twenty men. And so on. Until by the end of the dream month of Alexander’s imprisonment, there were virtually no Russian or Ukrainian men left alive in Kiev. The strange wave of disappearances swept through the local Party apparatus and military and leaders of state owned business cooperatives and even the secret police and soon like a strange and miraculous and ghostly purge had been carried out. Finally, finally Alexander was not just the only secret Ivory in Kiev, but conspicuously the only person left alive with a passport that said “Russian”. Finally, after the third lunar dream month, it began to snow. To snow with such determination that obstruction and paralysis took hold. Throughout the eerie disappearances, the drop in temperature, the sky falling out, Ivan Ivanovitch’s daughter Tanya hovered in a mesmerized trance. Alexander languished in prison although there was no one left to guard him beside Ivan though he did not even three months into the nightmare connect his interference with the love of his daughter for this Ivoryish medical student to anything so “otherworldly”. Yes, people did disappear from time to time, but not often the entire Inner Party Cadre of a major Soviet capital city. Yes, it did snow but not with the endless and unceasing siege of white deluge they were experiencing, or in the month of Prairial!
Finally, in the dream, the sun itself ceased to ever rise. And without party leaders, bureaucrats, draped in over forty feet of snow, Kyiv underwent forty days of night. During this time Ivan never left the dream police garrison where he and Alexander Perchevney would bond intermittently over Go and Vodka. Bonding begrudgingly, for Ivan spoke no Ukrainian and by the fourth month of these phenomena, no one was willing to speak any Russian anymore under the superstitious belief that it would bring death. So Alexander the Ivory and Ivan, party boss of Bila Tserkva spoke for the first time. First, on the subject of HaShem, then on the subject of the devil. And then also a bit on women which both agreed was stronger in will than either HaShem’s or the craft works of some lesser spooky devils.
“You love my daughter, but what do I care, fundamentally speaking? Love, is after all, just bullshit and chemicals. You offer her and as importantly me nothing, really, at all,” Ivan informed young Alexander.
“As I have never loved or even thought to love another woman, so do I love your Tanya!”
“You will never be accepted here or anywhere as a damn Ivory! Even a party Ivory is suspect. Even with a new name and a medical certificate. Your Ivoryish horns and tail cannot hide!”
“You could sponsor me! You can sponsor me to the Inner Party and allow me to marry her.”
“I’m not frightened by the evil weird Ivory magic outside. I know these are only cruel vodka lullabies, whispers in the ear of a man-made hard and hateful by life. I will wake in my bed tomorrow! There will be no Mexican invaders, no disappearing apparatchiks, no endless snow or black endless night. You will be sent to deep Siberia for some infraction. Tanya will wake up and marry a Russian Cavalry officer. Or someone from the foreign bureau.”
“How can you be sure?” asked Alexander Perchevney, “How can you know if your dreams are real or if some dark power has unleashed itself against your house for obstructing our basic and sincere love?”
“Because there is no love or magic allowed here. Those are of course bourgeoisie inventions. I will wake up soon, I feel it. And then order you shot!”
For nearly two fortnights General Winter took full hold of Bila Tserkva. It did not stop snowing. It did not become day again. By the third fortnight of his imprisonment and Tanya’s mysterious coma, there was no Russian anything left in the darkness. Ivan in his solitude became like a prisoner too. The heavy snows then cut Bila Tserkva off from all of the rest of the Soviet world and the wakefield Ivan hoped would come; nearly a year later still had not transpired, nor had he ever slept.
“You damn cursed Ivory! What kind of dark magic have you unleashed?”
“This is not my doing man,” yells young Alexander instinctively if not defensively.
“When will I wake from this perverse nightmare of ‘upsidedownhood’, of idiotic dragfootery?! You cannot ever marry my daughter. You are not a whole man. You will never give my daughter a good secure life.”
“This is not my doing man! Not by any means! You’ve brought this damn nightmare upon yourself. I have no such powers like these.”
“A typical Ivoryish (Jew) response.”
Lost and asleep in an endless nightmare Ivan Ivanovitch turned to mankind’s oldest imaginary friend. He implored the Russian Orthodox HaShem to end this plague of darkness, deprivation, and Ivoryish parasitic blight! But as we all know, if there is a Hashem, it is a Mayan long gamed if not vaguely Soviet HaShem, a go without understandable morals or temporal reward for the seemingly righteous. Whatever lesson it wishes us to learn is like algebra to an ant farm. It has been lost on us completely in its magnitude and scale. For ten years little auspicious Virgin born Yelizaveta was kept with her mother Tanya in the family Dascha, studied by the K.G.B. then its successor the F.S.B. Eventually between 1989-1991 the Soviet Union totally collapsed, and the Iron curtain was briefly lifted for a time.
The sun never rose and Ivan Ivanovitch never yielded. At the beginning of the spring of the third year of Alexander’s imprisonment there dropped from the sky blue and red parachutists of four foot stature. One a day. Grinning bandoliered Latin American Pararescuemen each gliding down into the outskirts of town and taking up position in the woods. One a day. With all the Russians gone, the Ukrainians began hiring these men as day laborers and yard workers. Ivan Ivanovitch began to suspect that there was a growing secret army of these Latino Pararescuemen waiting in the shadows awaiting the right moment to break young Alexander out of prison and spirit him into the wilderness of North America. Slowly Ivan Ivanovitch lost his mind and ordered endless torture on Alexander. And in the tumultuous days of the Mafia Wars and so-called “Shock Doctrine”, anyone could have had anything done to anyone.
While Alexander ‘Sasho’ Perchevney sat a long miserable five years in confinement punished for his love and his allegedly part Semitic race.
The young aspiring dentist had nightmarish dreams and a vision. A voice would come to him after midnight as he hung by his arms in solitary. The voice, a female voice from an ephemeral belly dancer would whisper, “And I will raise you up and make you richer and more powerful than any living man. And three daughters will you have by the spirit of HaShem, all born without intercourse to three women I will show you. And therefore you will be made mighty to protect and raise the children of G-d. Three candidates for Messiah. One to defeat the dragon, one to defeat the eagle, and one to tame the bear. You will know the Lord is with you. And your house will be most feared and respected among the houses of man. Now you are weak from torture, but next year you will have American dreams.”
The future founder of the fearsome Bratva that would bear his family name and that would so loot the banks of the world stayed only a bit longer in the hands of his tormentor. He sat in his own thoughts and the belly dancing spirit laid out for him a most elaborate plan. Awaiting rescue and reunion with his beloved Tanya. A most auspicious woman to be sure. Along with Yelizaveta his little bear cub. While languishing in solitary confinement it was revealed to him a way to steal the very most secret secrets of the ancient tribe called the Ivory. Thus when and if, a big if, ‘the world to come, eventually came, it would be a world completely under his control. Subservient to his whims and ambitions.
“Once someone or something has successfully attacked you, mauled your face. Has violated your family. Fucked up your pocket. Fucked up your reputation or your life. You make sure. You fucking make sure! You will never be in that position. Not ever again. You will never ever be a Suka, not ever,” sums up Sasho, “I just took that idea one step further. I sought to make the whole world my little bitch.”
Neither HaShem nor the Mossadnik agents facilitating his protracted revelations cared at all about the dubious morality or the long-term motives of Mr. Perechevney. There was a need in 1991 to give people something to believe in because very dark days were right around the corner.