Featured image: Bear, by Andre Odey (1935)

ocument number 17-34U-18K-CIA

Codename – BEAR

Received: December 26, 1988

Translated: January 2, 1989


It’s been a good run, Wilson, but they’ve finally caught up with me. I really don’t know how, but they did. The files were missing when I got in this morning. And it was specific too. It couldn’t have been just random. Only the files that had information on the uranium or on our correspondence were taken. They haven’t seemed to have done anything yet, but it feels like there are eyes on me always. Whenever I come to the office, no one speaks while I pass by. It feels like I’m almost a leper. I’ll keep showing up until something happens, but I may be taken out. Even though the USSR is under watch, its tendrils still extend, although now in the shadows. If it was found out that an engineer in the KGB has been giving information to the US government since almost its foundation, that would destroy any shred of a relationship that the West and East share.

They’re moving the uranium further east, that I know. They don’t want to make it easy if you were to try to destroy it or steal it away. I can’t really even begin to guess where they will take it. It may even go as far as Artyk in the mountains, but I’m not sure. How they will keep the uranium stable in the cold, I am not sure. I do know that the engineers have been having issues with the centrifuges. They are spinning themselves out of control. Although the production of enriched uranium is slowed, that changes nothing on the current state of the U-235 they already have. I know this will already be turned into bombs if something isn’t done about this. I will try to get you as much information as I can, but I fear for my life here. I will be leaving at the end of the week. Heading up to the cabin as soon as I can, so hopefully I can delay the inevitable.

Please keep track of Alexei for me. If you can, get him out of this hellhole. Maybe change his name and push him through Europe. I don’t want him to have to see the atrocities of his nation. The lives lost, the destruction that happened by the motherland. I lived through the time of great national pride, but now, the rulers have made what used to be a staunch king into a power-rabid animal. I appreciate you, my friend. I know our relationship was mostly built on gaining intelligence, but I truly saw you as my friend. I had always hoped to shake your hand on American soil, but this dream seems to slowly be running away. I hope to find some way to keep my work alive and keep saving lives.

My last known location will be Latitude 61.311475 and Longitude 73.493780. If you can, please get me out. If not, at least make sure that my life has been used for some greater purpose. Make sure no more lives are lost. Build Alexei a better world for me.


Nico Luce is currently studying biomedical engineering at the MU Engineering Department. He thanks the Marquette Literary Review for helping his continued interest in writing.

Andre Odey, “Bear,” Illinois University Library (1935):