TITLE: Among the Red Stars
GENRE: YA Historical
The voice on the radio spat out a few intelligible words before melting back into static. "…Large crowd here, despite the gloomy weather. They are all looking up, hoping to catch the first glimpse of…"
"Pasha, you're messing it up," said Valya. The ink from a newspaper clipping was rubbing off on her palm.
Valya, Iskra, and Pasha sat on wobbly wooden chairs that had been pulled out into the middle of the apartment's sole room, their slippered feet tucked behind the chair legs. Valya was a tanned, trousered fifteen-year-old, mostly elbows and knees, with rubber band-fastened brown braids tumbling out from under a red scarf. Pasha was often taken for Valya's relative, even though he wasn't. Iskra, a few years older, was never taken for her relative, even though she was.
Pasha's parents occupied the two comfortable chairs, his mother mending a dress and his father smoking and reading the communist newspaper simply titled Pravda. His pigtailed sisters sat on their bed, playing with an amorphous, eyeless stuffed animal that they claimed was a dog.
"The clips on the coil are a little rusty, that's all," said Pasha, a boy with an awkwardly proportioned face that looked like it had been assembled out of the wrong pieces. He hopped off his chair and, crouching next to his precious radio, reached reached into its wire and wood innards, absentmindedly singing the folk song, "Kalinka, kalinka, kalinka moya."
"We're going to miss it," said Valya.