Pantelei Apollinarievich Pantelei
Pantelei Apollinarievich Pantelei (pahn-teh-LAY ah-poh-lih-NAH-rih-vihch), also called Pantik, Academician, Pantelyusha, and Pant, a writer. Forty years old in 1972-1973, he wins at the racetrack, flies to Yalta, and ends up in a sobering-up station. Arrested in Moscow, he shares a dream in jail with the other heroes (Kunitser, Sabler, Khvastishchev, and Malkolmov); their identities merge with one another and with Tolya’s.
Aristarkh Apollinarievich Kunitser
Aristarkh Apollinarievich Kunitser (ah-rih-STAHRKH KEW-nih-tsehr), also called Kun, and Arik, a forty-year-old physicist and space scientist. He takes Nina Lygher-Cheptsova, his lover, to political meetings at Argentov’s.
Samson (Samsik) Apollinarievich Sabler (SAB-lehr), a forty-year-old jazz saxophonist in a Moscow nightclub. He faints during rehearsal and discovers he has emphysema.
Radius Apollinarievich Khvastishchev
Radius Apollinarievich Khvastishchev (RAH-dee-uhs khvah-stih-SHCHEHV), a forty-year-old sculptor. He invites a cloakroom attendant to pose, then learns the attendant is Lygher.
Gennady (Genka) Apollinarievich Malkolmov (geh-NAH-dee MAHL-kohl-mov), a forty-year-old physician who, in 1961, met Masha at a United Nations hospital in Katanga. Summoned to care for the injured Cheptsov, he allows him to die.
Tolya von Steinbock
Tolya von Steinbock, also called Tolya Bokov and Anatoly Apollinarievich Bokov, who is seventeen years old in 1949. He is in Magadan, Eastern Siberia, where Tolya lives with his mother and loves Lyudmila Guly. He witnesses his mother’s second arrest and Cheptsov’s torture of Sanya.
Alisa, a seventeen-year-old Magadan camp inmate in 1949 who is married to Fokusov. She is a sexually promiscuous Moscow beauty with reddish blonde hair in the 1970’s. When Pantelei confronts her, she chooses her husband’s wealth. Blazer says she is in the KGB.
Sanya Gurchenko (GOOR-chehn-koh), known as Father Alexander, a Catholic camp inmate and carpenter who escapes to the West in 1951. He introduced Tolya to the underground world of “Crimea.” As Father Alexander, he encounters Pantelei/Khvastishchev in Rome in 1965-1966.
Patrick Thunderjet, an Anglo-American friend of the heroes. He met Malkolmov and Masha in Katanga in 1961. He spends an evening with Khvastishchev, Toma, and Klara. He and Academician win at a Moscow racetrack and fly to Yalta, where he drunkenly requests political asylum. In 1972-1973, he is at the University of Sussex in England.
Stepan Cheptsov, a retired KGB officer who arrested Tolya’s mother and Sanya Gurchenko twenty years earlier....
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