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The story of the enigmatic assassin handler Konstantin Vasiliev from the TV series Killing Eve.
While not much of Konstantin's earlier life is specifically revealed yet, it is known that he was an F.S.B. operative who would frequently work with MI6 officer Carolyn Martens during the Cold War, where it is presumed that the two were lovers as well as friends. It is also highly speculated that the two's fling resulted in Carolyn being pregnant to her son Kenny, but it is currently uncertain. In the 1980s, Konstantin was Carolyn's Russian source to uncovering a plot involving the sale of plutonium, where his involvement was then pinned on her primary source Vladimir Betkin. He also married an unnamed woman and had one daughter named Irina, whom he considered a "little shit" and taught her different languages that include English, Mandarin, Spanish and German, noting that it is important to know different languages.
At some point earlier in his life, Konstantin defected from the F.S.B. and was secretly employed by an private organization known as the Twelve, primarily working as a handler for any assassin who is assigned to him and would hand them any targets that the Twelve wanted dead. During his time under their employment, he put on a facade for everyone that he was still an F.S.B. operative to maintain his cover. In 2014, he was assigned to break out and recruit Nadia Kadomtseya from a woman's prison in Russia, who was being assisted by her fellow inmate and lover, Oksana Astankova. Konstantin met Oksana, who went ahead to see if he had arrived and seeing her as to having true potential as an assassin for the Twelve, he decided to recruit her instead and they both left Nadia in prison. Afterwards, he told her ex-lover Anna Anmokoba that Oksana had died during her prison escape.
Over the next four years, Konstantin taught Oksana (now better known as "Villanelle") several languages and was assigned as her handler, in which she was trained by Dasha Duzran to become a professional assassin, ultimately becoming one of the Twelve's best and her kills garnered herself a reputation internationally. However, Konstantin would also have to sometimes convince high-ranking agents of the Twelve to give her another chance whenever she went off the rails. Knowing that Villanelle is unpredictable and not loyal to anyone, he kept her in the dark about her employment to the Twelve, never mentioning them by name, and also never told her about himself (including his birthday and family).
In 2018, he visited Villanelle in her apartment in Paris, where she was playing dead and jumpscared him for fun, where he claimed that he would be said if she was genuinely dead. He then gave her a bonus payment that the Twelve has granted her for assassinating controversial Russian politician and sex trafficker Victor Kedrin in Vienna. He also informed that they want her to do another job in Tuscan that next day. Two days after his previous visit, he returned to Villanelle, who was asleep with a couple, and after they had left, he informed her that while she successfully killed Victor Kedrin as planned, his girlfriend Kasia Molkovska had witnessed his death and will be interviewed by MI5 in London the next day. He then sends her to kill her that night to stop that from happening and to also make it look like a suicide, while voicing his concerns that she might get caught.
Following London, Konstantin returned to Villanelle and waited for her in the apartment. He wanted to get her assessed again due to failing to make Kasia's death look like a suicide. Although she was excited for her next job due to the target having asthma, he refused to allow her until she was assessed. They went to see Jerome, where Villanelle passed with flying colors. However, Konstantin requested Jerome to ask about Anna, whom she developed deep resentment towards for getting her arrested, and this caused her to not get signed off. After the two left, Villanelle was furious and claimed that she was fine, but Konstantin insisted that she was worried about her and after she said she cared about him, the two hugged before he left her. However, he learned that Villanelle stole the postcard and killed the target. He confronted her in the apartment for disobedience but backed off after her new boyfriend Sebastian walked in. After Sebastian left, Konstantin revealed that an MI5 agent named Eve Polastri has left her department just to find her. After advising her that they must be subtle, the two find Sebastian dead, who had tried the perfume she used to kill her asthmatic target.
A week later, he sent her to Berlin to assassinate Chinese colonel Zhang Wu and booked her for one night. However, he learnt that she was staying there a bit longer and that Eve was heading there to investigate her work. Suspicious that she might be going off the rails, Konstantin went to see her in her apartment, asking if she was having a holiday. He informed her of Eve's investigation and had an off-the-record job for her: follow her but not to approach her. He noticed that she has a suitcase of someone else's clothes and wondered why Eve thinks she killed Zhang. After a woman arrived and after he was introduced as her "angry uncle", he ordered her not to do anything stupid and left.
Konstantin later learned that Villanelle killed Zhang using Eve's name to get her attention and had also went against his instructions by killing her partner Bill Pargrave, who was off-limits. Realizing that he cannot trust her to do things alone anymore, he visited her back in Paris to find that she has thrown a birthday party for him, even though she didn't know when it was. After getting her to stop and having opened up her presents for him, he revealed that he knows what she did in Berlin, voicing his disappointment and distrust in her. He then gives her another assignment for England, where she must now work with other assassins for her disobedience. Before he left, she begged him to open his last present, which was a squeaky toy for his daughter, horrifying him as he now realized that she knows more about him than she lets on.
Several days later, Konstantin went to see Villanelle after she returned from England following her successful assassination of Frank Haleton. As the two cooked lunch, she tells him that her partners Diego and Nadia were dead, saying that Diego killed Nadia and that she killed him before he could kill her as well. Knowing that she was making it up, he reveals to her that Nadia is still alive and imprisoned in their old prison, saying that she needs to be silenced before she tells her story of the event. After that, she asks him what number he is in the Twelve, shocking him that she knows about the organization's existence. Little did Villanelle know, the Twelve ordered Konstantin to leave her in prison for her constant disobedience. However, although he agreed, he was unable to go through with it, he planned to get both her and Nadia out with Carolyn's help.
In Russia, Konstantin escorts Villanelle to a prison van that would get her inside, explaining her cover story to her. Knowing that she was nervous about returning there, he tries to comfort her by explaining the plan and promising that he would be there to get her out in a couple of days. After she is taken away, he meets up with Carolyn, Eve and Vladimir Betkin, whom he still has contact with. Maintaining his cover story that he still works for F.S.B., Konstantin and Vlad agree to allow them to interview Nadia once for information provided by Frank before his death, on the condition that Konstantin goes with them to the prison. At the prison's interview room, Konstantin told them that he would be in the other room while they talked to Nadia. During the interview, Nadia explained that Oksana took her place during the prison escape. Knowing that she could expose him, Konstantin interrupted her, claiming that the sound in the other room wasn't working, prompting her to refuse to continue but does tell Eve about Anna.
The next morning, after Nadia was killed, Konstantin explains to Carolyn and Eve over breakfast that she was killed by another inmate. Eve wanted to meet with the inmate "Natalie", but Konstantin laughed this off and refused to, and as he took his leave, he told them they could stay but they were no longer welcome. In reality, he was hoping that Carolyn would be able to get Villanelle out of the prison, especially since he discovered that the Twelve learnt of his treachery. As he returned home much later, he was called by Irina up to her room, only to find Villanelle waiting for him with a gun and a tape recorder. While holding him at gunpoint in the sitting room, she reveals that his family is alive and that the Twelve want him dead. As she offered him a chance to go anyway he wanted in exchange for his family's release, he opted for a death by pills and a glass of whiskey. While he collects the items, he explains his predicament and that he had to argue with the Twelve's agents just to give her another chance. Upon asking him for the names of the Twelve, he explains that only individuals known as Keepers are trusted with their names and he doesn't know any of them. As he takes the pills and the whiskey, he tells her that he loved her more than anything, saying that she is the best thing that happened to him and that's she's more powerful than anyone else. As he finished the glass, he knocks her down with a log and flees to the boathouse. He manages to escape with his boat before she could catch him.
Knowing that Villanelle's taken his daughter hostage to get to him, Konstantin went to Carolyn for help getting her back. The next day, he and Carolyn inform Kenny and Eve about what happened, where it is implied that the two had sex the night before. Over breakfast, Konstantin explains that she had been sent to kill him but he lied about why they want him dead, still sticking with his facade. After realizing that she'll go to Anna's, Konstantin goes with Eve to see her, but as he drives, she interrogates him since she never gave her the address. After he pulls over to have a tinkle, she holds him at gunpoint and forces him confesses that he recruited Villanelle from prison for the Twelve as an assassin, but claimed that he hadn't seen her in years. He then expresses that his only concern is his daughter and that if they get her back, Villanelle is the key bringing the Twelve to her. After Villanelle calls Eve with Anna's phone and sets a location at Café Radozhny, the two confront her and she holds Irina at gunpoint. After Konstantin turns himself in so Irina would be spared, Villanelle shoots him to complete her assignment and escapes with her passport and money. Carolyn informs Eve and Kenny at the airport that he died at hospital.
A few days afterwards, it is revealed that Konstantin didn't die at hospital and was living at Carolyn's house under her protection while MI6 protects his family. However, they were unaware that he was still alive and Carolyn refused to tell him where they were. After Villanelle had just escaped from the custody of Julian before she could be caught, Carolyn took Eve to see Konstantin in her home. Konstantin explains his current situation regarding his family. After she asks him if she knows where Villanelle is, he tells her to forget about her since she has something worth having, comparing the assassin to the Hungry Caterpillar in regards to her being a parasite that gets in people's heads and that everyone who she cares about ends up suffering, including Anna, Nadia and himself. The next day that night, he is having dinner with Carolyn, where the two have a laugh over by each other's stories. Although he begged, she still refused to tell him where his family is, knowing that it would compromise their safety. After he asked how she would feel if she may never see Kenny again, he is surprised that she wouldn't be worried if she knew he was alright, explaining that she's always been careful.
The next day, Eve visits Konstantin and makes a deal with him: his help in locating Villanelle in one of the Twelve's safehouses in London so she could capture her in exchange for the location on where MI6 was keeping his family, something that Carolyn would never offer him. He reluctantly agrees to locate Villanelle for her. However, after asking around, he learns that the Twelve have sentenced Villanelle to death and that they had sent Raymond Algaron, a handler that is usually requested to kill assassins when they are no longer useful. Knowing that MI6's attempt to capture her will probably end with her death as well, he planned to betray Eve and arrange for both of their escape. Meeting Villanelle in her apartment, who had actually missed him, he explains to her about Raymond's true occupation and gives her an ultimatum: escape with him and become a contract killer, making more money than they did before, or face the risk of being killed by Raymond or the MI6, whom he alerted to her current location. Although she is skeptical, she agrees and the two escape out the window just before Eve and MI6 could capture her. Now on the road, Konstantin tells Villanelle that Eve has become more interested in an assassin called the Ghost, which makes her jealous.
In Amsterdam, Konstantin gives Villanelle a contract to kill their client's cheating husband. However, seeing how Villanelle finds their line of work boring, he takes her to an art gallery to find inspiration. Although she is uninterested in most of the displays, she is drawn towards one that depicts naked men being executed upside-down, saying that they look like bacon. Over lunch, Konstantin claims to Villanelle that Irina is perhaps stronger than her, noting that Eve Polastri has made her grow a little soft ever since the two have met. That night after the contract was completed, Villanelle is unsatisfied with it and Konstantin tries to convince her that Eve isn't interested in her anymore. However, this inadvertently causes her to have a downward spiral the next day after she waited at the crime scene for Eve, only for someone else to arrive, and then taking drugs afterwards. Realizing that Villanelle was missing, Konstantin tracked her down to a nightclub and made it just in time to stop her from killing someone in the bathroom, and then carried her back to the apartment. He is then found sleeping on the floor in the morning.
After the events in Amsterdam, Konstantin enlisted her to take out a client's spoiled nephew, in which the uncle gave them a tip. Konstantin handed it to her after finding having a staring contest with a living statue street artist. Later, he met with an unknown person and was told about the next target: Eve Polastri, who was being asked to have killed by an unnamed client. He handed the contract to Villanelle, who instantly refused to do it, but Konstantin told her that Eve was making her weak and that she needed to kill her, claiming that she won't remember her name the week after. He then took her to meet with an associate to get the necessary items. After Villanelle met with Eve and was asked to interrogate the Ghost for the name of her client, Konstantin was seen with Carolyn watching them leave from a distance, meaning that he was aware of the plot during so. The plot was successful and the Ghost's client was revealed to be Aaron Peel, who was selling a weapon. After that, Konstantin and Villanelle moved to London and he stayed at Carolyn's residence, much to the surprise of Kenny.
When Carolyn told Eve that she needs to orchestrate someone to get close to Aaron Peel so they can learn of his plans, they hired Konstantin and Villanelle to do so without killing Aaron. When Villanelle was having dinner with Peel at his home and hit him for his rudeness, Konstantin advised Eve to not do anything, feeling that it would get them closer instead of blowing the operation, which worked. As Peel invited Villanelle to join him to Rome, Konstantin told Villanelle that if the operation goes south, she would be on her own with Eve to defend themselves. However, Carolyn secretly made Konstantin a deal: help her ensure that Villanelle kills Peel so that Raymond would come after her, and he could see his family again. At Rome, after Peel's death and Raymond's arrival, Konstantin approached Villanelle and told her to leave Eve at Rome and explain to her about Raymond, inadvertently revealing his betrayal and that he alerted him to her presence, and that while they were friends, they weren't family. After hinting to her that her family were not all dead, she refused to leave Eve behind and as he left, she vowed to kill him and his family for what he did much to his disbelief. He then receives his family's location from Carolyn and left Rome to see them.
Following the events in Rome, Konstantin found out that that his wife has now moved on from him and has a boyfriend, which has apparently made Irina even more irritating. Six months afterwards, Konstantin returned to London under orders from somebody to keep an eye on Carolyn. While deciding on a London souvenir in a shop, he is receives phone calls from two phones and receives a series of Russian texts on the third. He picks a magnet of a London bus, explaining to the shopkeeper that it's for his daughter, who hates England, and that's why he's sending it to her: to annoy her. At his apartment that night, he is laughing at a movie and goes through his phone's voicemails. One is about a report that's due, and another is from Irina, who is urging him to come home and relieve her of her mother's boyfriend, since he told her he would only be in the U.K. for a few weeks, which it's been longer than. He then receives a food delivery, where the takeout menu has "Time to go fishing" written on it in Russian. He also got a phone call from Kenny, who asked if he was his father and he answered that he didn't know.
A week later, following the tragic death of Kenny, Konstantin attends the funeral service but angered Eve after he openly agreed with the official statement that it was a suicide, which she knew wasn't and he accuses him of thinking of no one but himself. During the service, he comforts a mourning Carolyn as she looked at a display of photos with Kenny in them. He then meets her daughter Geraldine at the buffet, who claims that the two met when she was younger where he comforted her after having a nightmare during one of her mother's dinners. Carolyn comes up and tells Konstantin that Geraldine moved in with her to help her grief. He then witnesses Eve yelling at Carolyn as she left for also believing Kenny jumped from the building. The next day, he meets with a messenger in a car, who tells him that he's been ordered to stay in London for a bit longer to keep an eye on Carolyn. Afterwards, he pretends to run into Geraldine by accident in London. After showing Geraldine the magnet he bought, he gave it to her after she explained that Kenny used to collect magnets as a kid. In truth, he attached a hidden microphone to it so her conversations can be listened to.
With his work in London completed, he discovered that Villanelle is back working for the Twelve and currently residing in Barcelona. Needing to warn her about Eve's survival from being shot, he waits for her inside her new mansion. After revealing himself and complimenting her home, Villanelle throws stuff at him, saying he doesn't get to visit her without an invitation anymore. After he asks if he can, she kicks him in the crotch for his betrayal in Rome, saying that she'll think about it. While saying that he's missed her, he voices his doubts that the Twelve will indeed promote her to a Keeper, but understands her distrust in him. He then notifies her that Eve is still alive, explaining that she didn't check to see if she was dead. He tells her not to go to London and as he left, she asks how he knew she was back with the Twelve and he says that he never stopped working for them. However, given that he never gave an explanation about how he came back despite betraying them before, it is uncertain if he's actually telling the truth.
Days later back in London, Konstantin was called for a meeting by Twelve accountant Charles Kruger, who nervously explained that someone had siphoned a total of six million euros from the Panda account in Geneva he owned and that he was only able to save a portion of it left. While Konstantin said he will make some calls to help, Charles asked him to tide him over until he found the one responsible, to which he agreed. As he left, Konstantin happily told Charles that Irina is a little shit. Returning to his residence and getting into bed, Konstantin was scared by Villanelle who was waiting for him under the covers. Konstantin is angry, wanting to go to sleep because he has find six million euros tomorrow. Villanelle says it won't happen, even if he sold both of his kidneys that the Twelve own figuratively anyway. She keeps annoying him, going on about killing Charles and if she was a cute and joyous baby, until he snapped, telling her that he saw a photo of her and she was ugly as hell with a strange head. After he couldn't recall who was in the photo with her, she proclaims that she wants to find her family. Although he was hesitant, she convinced him otherwise and he goes to sleep on the coach.
Back in Moscow some time later, Konstantin went to visit Irina at school, convincing her to sneak out of school with him and gets her ice cream afterwards. He asks about her mother's new boyfriend, who is an oil company executive, which in his eyes makes him a crook, but much like himself as Irina counters. She asks if she can stay with him that night, but he has to be in England, explaining that while England is terrible, it is his job to do terrible things. Irina however knows he isn't working with FSB or MI6 despite what he claims, just himself, and that it's only a matter of time before everyone he's lied to and betrayed will catch up to him and kill him, making her more alone and miserable. He says that he does have a plan but she doesn't buy it and leaves him. Konstantin later goes to see Charles's widow Bertha with flowers to comfort her. Inside, she tells him that Charles sent her an odd email the day he died, believing that he may have been in a hurry. She continued by saying it said he worked out who was responsible for the stolen money, and if anything happened to him, she was to forward it to someone, but she hasn't yet because she doesn't know what to do. He tells her to send him the email and get to somewhere safe, and she suggests her holiday home.
After retrieving the email, Konstantin decided that he needed Bertha silenced to tie up loose ends, he heads to Barcelona to find Villanelle since he had information on her family. Before leaving England though, he visited Geraldine who had kissed him unexpectedly, but he never took advantage of it and left, only to be spotted on the sidewalk by Carolyn in a cab. In Barcelona, he declines a phone call from Irina and approaches Villanelle by sneaking up on her and scaring her. She is not impressed by it and Konstantin wants to talk to her somewhere relaxing. They choose a cable-car and Konstantin doesn't like it, partly because he's scared of heights but mainly because Villanelle was jumping up down to torment him until he told her to stop. She suspects he's upset because she'll be his boss, but he says that she isn't and asks her why she's in a good mood. She says it's Eve's birthday and Konstantin reminds her that she shot her and partly ruined her marriage, adding that he heard Niko's in Poland. He then gives her an envelope containing information on her family, further saying that he will find them but asks her to do something for him off the record. He asks her to kill Bertha, but do it nice and efficiently. After she calls him to tell him it's done, he learns where her family are and informs her so she can see them in Russia.
A few days later, he is seen cheering Irina during one of her ice hockey games where he sees Villanelle nearby. She wanted in on where he was going with Irina. Not wanting her to know he was planning to take Irina to Cuba, he asks how it went with her mother Tatiana, but he quickly realizes that she killed her. She claimed she deserved it and Konstantin told her that everyone's mother deserved it, but she was supposed to grow up and realize that she was just insane, not evil, but she refuses to talk about it. He says it's too dangerous for all three of them to go together and that he will send for her. She refuses and insists the two of them go first and then he can send for Irina. He refuses but promises she can join them, but also warned her not to make anyone suspicious because she will be dead the minute they find out. Irina comes out to yell at Konstantin for missing her goal and after Irina refuses to go with Villanelle, he sends her to get changed. As he leaves, he points out to Villanelle that if she is getting out, she has to leave everything and everyone, including Eve.
Later on in England, Konstantin is in a shop and finds Carolyn waiting for him outside, suggesting that they go for a drive. As she is speeding down a desolate road, she refuses to tell him where they are going and throws his wallet out the window. She wanted to know what he wanted with his child and Konstantin, thinking it was Geraldine, confessed she kissed him. She speeds up and scares him, wanting to know why Kenny called him the night before he died. He confessed that he asked about him possibly being his father and said he didn't know. As Carolyn pulls over in complete shock, she kicks him out and takes off. He walks all the way back to his apartment to find Paul Bradwell of MI6 waiting for him, who tells him that Charles wasn't the man they are after and says that whoever had his wife Bertha killed is the one to find. He threatened Konstantin that if there's a breach, they are both to blame, but Paul will make sure he is the one who will fall. Realizing that his allegiances are putting him in danger, Konstantin packs his suitcase and calls Irina to tell her school's out early this year. As he arrives at the house to pick her, he witnesses Irina using the car to run down and kill her mother's boyfriend, leaving him horrified.