In the year 1991, Ukraine and Russia split, due to the fall of the Soviet Union. Alexander and Nikolai didn't care though, they were still un-separable best friends. They woukld stay best friends. As the boys grew up in Ukraine, very close to the Russian border, they spent some winters very cold, due to the fact that Russia had halted gas lines going in to Ukraine. "Why is it so cold?" Alexander once exclaimed, and Nikolai answered, "Well, You see Alexander, Russia halted gas lines to Ukraine, so therefore we do not have heat." Alexander retorted quickly, "Well then, I hate Russia and everything that comes from Russia. "Hey, Im from Russia you idiot!" shouted Nikolai.
The boys calmed down, however, they still were mad at eachother on the inside. Nikolai was proud to be Russian, and Alexander was proud to be Ukrainian. Even though they lived in the same province and grew up together, they let their ethnicity come between them. Alexander was still frustrated about the halted gas lines, and felt that Russia was trying to influence Ukraine.