THE YOUNG SPECIALIST
After a stint in counterintelligence with some stodgy hard-liners, Putin is sent to the Andropov Red Banner Institute in Moscow for additional training. The officers quickly take notice of the smart and unflappable trainee. He's offered a spot in the most coveted of divisions: foreign intelligence. Meanwhile, he meets a stunning airline stewardess, Lyudmila. He impresses her with hard-to- come-by tickets for three nights at the theater, procured through his KGB connections. Their courtship lasts three years. They marry and are transferred on Putin's first assignment abroad: Dresden, East Germany.