Characters In The Episode

  • Vixen: Red-haired spy; very pretty, experienced, something of a cowboy, willing (almost anxious) to shoot it out; smart and very good
  • Prancer: World famous model turned spy; stunningly pretty with black hair; new at the spy business, partner to Vixen on an assignment
  • Fedor Antonymich: (reference only) Head of the Ministry of Internal State Security; known sadist who tortures females for the fun of it

On the other side of the world, far from Eastlake, many events were unfolding. Of particular interest, events were occurring in a picturesque East European city. Those events would, in time, ripple back to Eastlake. Because it was quaint in the best of ways, Hans Christen Anderson would have felt right at home here. Tourists, especially those from the West, loved it. They loved the adorable houses and the cute little shops, all of which seemed to be run by Santa Claus look-alikes, or by women who could be assumed to be his wife. In fact, a major Hollywood film studio had used a few of the shops and houses as sets for many scenes in the Santa Claus fantasy movie they were shooting. Indeed, this was the third such movie in that series, all of which had used this city for location shooting. Also, back in the days when tourists took their pictures on film, countless rolls of it were used to record the quaintness, to show to admiring friends during the inevitable and usually boring sessions of sitting through an evening of watching the slides taken by the vacationing couple. Now those same shots were taken and stored on digital memory formats, and that only increased the number of pictures taken. The recognizable shops and houses from the movies were particular favorites of the photographers.

For all its quaintness, it was still a sizable city by European standards, especially when it was compared to other Eastern-bloc cities. As is the case with most cities, the tourist centers were relatively small and self-contained. Tourists, whether from the West or other points on the planet, chose hotels, restaurants, and entertainments that could be found within that small section. As soon as one left that section, the character of the neighborhoods changed quickly and dramatically. In one direction the character became grimy and sordid. In another direction, it was more industrial. In a third, it was a business district and the center of nightlife establishments catering to the local population. In one of those restaurants, agents Prancer and Vixen were having dinner. In a stroke of whimsy, the two agents had chosen those names for this operation in large part because of the many associations that had been created in people’s minds, linking this city to Santa’s North Pole.

Beginning with her long, jet-black hair, agent Prancer was strikingly pretty: most thought stunningly so. She was a relative newcomer to the spy game. Her long legs and abundant breasts became world-famous as she parlayed her almost heart-stopping beauty into a career as a successful model before her current employers approached her. The cover of being a carefree, partying, model would ensure her access to almost any non-Muslim country in the world, and her looks would buy her passage into many normally closed-off areas if she played her cards correctly. In that respect, she was a veritable cardsharp.

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