In the midst of it all, you were wondering why the heck you had decided to go to Russia. You had been planning a trip to Europe for a while, working and adding money to the trip funding.
However, at the last minute, you decided to go to Russia.
And dammit, you were regretting it.
Having been born and raised in the southern United States, you were used to the warm, sunny climate and the long summer days. In Russia, it was the exact opposite, and you hadn't been anticipating it. The days were short and you were freezing your butt off. No, freezing wasn't a strong enough word for it. Something beyond that, something that wasn't right for words. It would be a miracle to see the sun again. You missed the summer days when the nice breezes would overlap the heat just perfectly, and the way the sun would shine whenever there was a football game.
However, you had to admit the trip was actually kind of fun.
Exclude the freezing nights spent under piles of blankets and desperate attempts to stay warm, and the trip to Russia was worth it. Your camera was already filled with pictures and you were attempting to draw some of the Russian architecture you had seen on your trip. The food was yummy, too, but sometimes the servings were just way too small. Your thoughts were interrupted by a snowflake landing on your nose, and you shiver in the cold. Might as well try to stay warm
Wrapping your coat tighter around you, you begin your search for a place selling hot chocolate.
Dammit! Didn't they have anything warm here? You had been searching for over two hours, and you assumed you were going to turn into an ice sculpture before the day ended. Too bad they didn't have hot chocolate outside the United States. Well, it existed in some places, but it was hard to find. And it was basically extinct in Russia. Angry, irritated thoughts swirled through your mind as you walked inside a bar. Probably the closest you could get to a warm drink was vodka, and that certainly wasn't extinct here.
"Odin stakan vodki, pozhaluista."
You murmur to the bartender, slumping at the bar. At least the bar was warm. You go cross-eyed and frown at your nose, now a bright cherry-red from walking in the cold for so long.
"Is the American cold?"
You whirl around at a voice behind you, obviously startled. A young man about your age with beige-colored hair and violet eyes is standing there with a friendly smile, wearing a tan trench coat and a long, white scarf. Wait a second
"How did you know I was American?" You demand immediately.
The young man laughs, those violet eyes sparkling.
"I have a friend from there, so I know the accent."
He answers casually, taking a seat next to you. You stiffen a little, remembering warnings about strangers. He speaks with a Russian accent, so you're a little disappointed that he's not American. Was there someone who could relate to this freaking cold weather?
"My name is Ivan Braginski. What is your name?" He asks.
"________ _______. But why do you need to know?" You narrow your eyebrows, already getting suspicious.
"No need to worry, ________. We are comrades, da?" Ivan smiles, and for some reason your heart flutters a bit when you see his sweet, shy smile.
"Yeah, I guess so." You mutter.
Suddenly, the bartender appears with two glasses of vodka, and he hands one to Ivan and one to you. This surprises you- he didn't even order one! Yet the Russian casually nods to the man and sips his vodka.
"So why have you come to Mother Russia?" Ivan asks.
"Vacation. But this stupid cold weather is ruining everything." You grumble, gripping the vodka glass.
"Da, I don't prefer the cold either. I'd give anything to live somewhere warm with sunflowers."
Ivan smiles, as if it is a pleasant dream that he knows is far out of his reach. You raise an eyebrow. A Russian, saying he doesn't prefer his country?
"Wow. You should come to America. Where I'm from in the South, it gets so hot that sometimes you can't do anything." You say, taking a sip of your vodka.
"I can only imagine a place like that." Ivan laughs softly, and your heart does that annoying flutter thing again.
For a moment, you actually feel sorry for him. It would pretty much be torture having to live in this icebox. And that thing about the sunflowers
they're so common where you're from. Maybe you could show it to Ivan. He would probably like it. Woah, hold on there. Crazy thoughts coming out of nowhere. But the Russian is so intimidating, waiting patiently for a response.
it's very warm and we have sunflowers." You manage, and he smiles again.
"You're lucky to live in such a place, ________. I'm trapped here." He laughs.
"Trapped?" You frown.
"Da, you could say that. I can't get out of here with my boss breathing down my neck as well as my sisters. You could say that I'm tied to Russia." Ivan shrugs.
"Oh." You look down guiltily at your vodka, trying to imagine life like that.
"I must get home soon, so I should be on my way. It was such a pleasure to meet you, ________. I hope we meet again."
Ivan does that smile thing again before standing up and leaving some money on the counter for the bartender. You glance behind you, but the Russian had disappeared.