Sofie Richter was born to German parents, Hans and Renate, in Berlin on the 3rd of March 1995. When she was barely a year old, her father found work as a lorry driver for a construction company, mainly transporting loose materials. After a few months of hard work, long hours and many days away from home, Hans scraped enough money together to rent a small apartment in the city, the apartment where Sofie would spend her childhood growing up. It was nothing special but it belonged to the family and her parents decided not to have any more children, so there was no need to go further upmarket. Sofie’s mother, Renate, spent her days looking after Sofie and tending to the apartment, keeping the place running whilst Hans was away, sometimes for days at a time. Upon his return from a long trip, Hans brought Sofie a gift in the form of a tamed chameleon to keep as a pet. She kept him lovingly, christening him ‘Hans’ after her father.
Growing up, Sofie became your typical lazy teenager, never really helping around the house much to her mother’s resentment, doing well at school to keep her parents off of her back, spending much of her free time outside with her friends, smoking, and drinking in her later years. Eventually, her love of the bottle and development of a liking for party drugs ate away at her performance in school, forcing her to skip classes to keep up with her social circle of drug-loving friends, driving her grades down from their usual excellence to a middling level. Unfortunately for her, she was prone to doing things in order to maintain her status in her friend circle, which spurred her on to be the first in her friend group to get a tattoo from a local tattoo artist operating out of a small apartment above a greengrocers. This element of her personality led to her developing a tidy drug habit towards the end of her schooling, mainly dabbling in cocaine, ecstasy and, her favorite, LSD. She spent the remainder of her last year in high school this way, partying, staying out late with friends, acting irresponsibly to the point of giving her mother a heart attack, usual teenaged behavior.
Despite her erratic behavior, she graduated with decent grades and received an offer to attend the city’s university to study economics, her chosen course from high school. Under intense pressure from her parents, she accepted despite wishing to pursue her life elsewhere. She lived out of her childhood home, for the most part, occasionally bunking down at the houses of other friends in the city when she was in a state after a long night, though she would always return home to ensure that Hans, her pet, was fed and watered on time. Throughout her first year at university, she became increasingly bored with her studies and spent most of her time, as usual, partying and finding ways to avoid studying, lectures and anything to do with the university. It was through this that she met Anastazie, the socialite daughter of wealthy Chernarussians who frittered most of her time away with parties, plasticised socializing and traveling between the social scenes of various countries. Ana had been in Berlin on a 2-week trip to explore the social scene, mainly to keep her away from her parents who had important things to be doing, and had met Sofie at a well-frequented nightclub whilst she was out with a gang of her friends. They quickly struck up a decent conversation, finding each other surprisingly relatable despite their wildly different upbringings, and found themselves drunken friends by the end of the evening. Ana was Sofie’s escape from boredom over the following two weeks, she was funny, full of life and had been to interesting places that a working-class girl like Sofie could only dream of going. When the two weeks of Ana’s trip came to an end, she made a surprise offer to Sofie to travel back to her homeland with her as a visitor for a few weeks, maybe even over a month depending on how she liked the country. At first, the thought of visiting the country didn’t appeal to her, from the research she’d done online it seemed like it was in a bad way, many impoverished towns, underdeveloped economy, recovering from a civil war, the usual third world bullshit. Ana eventually convinced her after telling her about her home in Novodmitrovsk, as well as offering to pay all of the expenses for Sofie, she lived in a set of apartments in the city, refurbished by her parents over time. They arrived in Chernarus at Miroslavl, they decided to spend a few days in the city before beginning the journey back to Novodmitrovsk. Sofie suspected that Ana didn’t want to go home but kept her suspicions to herself, enjoying the surprising mix of Western and Eastern European culture she found present in Chernarus. For her, it was a whole new world outside of her sizeable bubble in Berlin.