Arkadi was born to a middle-class family in the dreary city of Tver, just north of Moscow. When he was four his father, a career Captain in the 131st Separate Motor Rifle Brigade, went Chechnya to put down that ugly stain on Russia’s border. The next year he would be dead, killed alongside most of the brigade during the fighting in central Grozny. This had a profound effect on Arkadi. Before he had been a jovial and intelligent child, he quickly turned to join the troublemakers at school and barely past graduation.
Arkadi had been always been interested in military service, regardless of his death early into Arkadi’s life, his father had been a soldier and that left its mark on his son. He joined as early as he could, passed his basic training with high marks, and eagerly expected to be sent to the ongoing war in Chechnya, a chance to get revenge for his father’s death. He did not get that chance however, as the war drew to a close in 2009. Another war was on the horizon though.
Arkadi was called up for the Russian intervention in the Chernarus’s civil war, following the Moscow terror bombings. While initially patriotic and fervent in his desire to take revenge for that terrible action, he quickly grew numb to the violence as casualties increased. He fought at Kirovograd, otherwise known as The Pit, every single comrade Arkadi had made in the military died in that horrid battle, so Arkadi stopped making new friends. While distant in spirit he was nonetheless an effective and uncompromising soldier, putting himself in harm’s way very often for the good of the mission. He refused every promotion offered, citing this reason or that, while in reality, he didn’t want to be responsible for the lives of others.
After the intervention Arkadi returned home for some much needed R and R. He received significant leave as a parting gift from his old CO. He spent most of the bonus pay on alcohol, cigarettes, and whores. When he returned to his unit he found himself decorated with a medal for merit, earned in combat and blood, as well as a promotion. Needless to say, it did not go well. His love for booze quickly turned into an addiction and he showed up to work drunk. His discipline, outside of training exercises, was abysmal. Soon he'd pushed to far and was consequently demoted back to Efreitor. He didn't do much to earn the respect of his comrades, either. Fearing that making friends just led to broken souls he made sure to stay separate too the rest of the enlisted. He quietly requested a transfer to a far off posting so he could finish the rest of his military career in peace.
Sent to Chernarus to add some much needed experience to the newly formed 320th. Arkadi was posted to Zelenogorsk to help the transition of the state into a proper Russian land. He was a black sheep around base and rarely spent time with the other enlisted men. He never made any friends. He was however, a dignified and professional soldier, and conducted himself as such. After the the world descended into Quarantine amidst a new infection. He would do what was asked of him.
What. A. Fucking. Disaster.
From the goddamn start the 320th struggled. The rifle battalion fortified a major city on orders from the Major. Leaving the wire resulted in gunfire from every nook and cranny. Many troops were killed and the battalion killed even more of the enemy... armed or not. Arkadi fell into a state of depression, reminded too much of Kirovograd and the futile war his father fought and died in. He was saved from any extreme decisions by a friendship formed with his section sergeant Anto Vasin. Though he was of local stock, Arkadi felt a shared comradeship with the man. How ironic that to people once enemies became friends...
The Long March
After repeated attacks, mass riots, and a bombing of major base infrastructure, the decision was made to shut off the FOB and take the fight to the nationalists. This pleased Akardi, who insisted proactive engagements were the only way to effectively shut down the insurgents. It all came crashing down after the recording. The CLF didn't bomb us, the goddamn RAC did. Tensions between our units exploded and there was very nearly a mutiny. At the last second Captain Sokolov calmed down the situation and prevent a war. He was then killed in an ambush by unknown forces. Morale in the unit shattered and the Major lost his nerve and ordered the retreat of the battalion. Many, Arkadi included, dropped out of the march at points along the retreat, determined to avenge the beloved Captain and unwilling to run from a fight.
Losing his natural support group and so many friends was hard on Arkadi. He returned to his old drinking habits and seldom was sober. He tagged along with a group of troublemakers, blending into their group to immerse himself in Chernarus. He learned the finer points of the local tongue by his new friend Alexey. He knew he'd need to play the part of an honest Chernarussian civilian to survive in the new world. He would have his revenge.