Stepan grew up among steppe herdsmen not far from the Kirghiz border, on harsh ground. He is the ultimate frontier man, and inhumanly tough. Stepan is flamboyant, loud and intimidating - never using defense tactics, never taking cover. He rose to fame when the Kirghiz had captured his entire squad. They tried to break the Cossacks by torture… but couldn’t get a sound out of them. Stepan mocked the captors and offered, in exchange for his life, to break his own men. The Kirghiz khan was amused, and allowed him to proceed. Even the roughest tribesmen had never seen such cruelty. With the Cossacks near death, he gained his captors confidence and was handed an axe to finish the job. It was their final mistake. He turned into a raging fury, slaughtering the khan and his guards. His people were free once more.