| "The Emperor's Return" |
Set in the 21st Century
|Type of Appearance:||Direct|
|Date of Birth:||20th century|
|Date of Death:||2003|
|Cause of Death:||Murder by firearm|
George Nikolaidis (d. 10 June 2003) was a Greek army private. He fought in the war between Greece and Turkey, and was among the troops who took Istanbul on 7 June 2003. He served in Sgt. Yannis Pappas' squad. Unlike his commander, Nikolaidis was a devoutly Orthodox.
On June 10, following days of fierce street fighting, Nikolaidis was one of only four soldiers of the squad left. With him was Sgt. Pappas, Cpl. Taso Kiapos, and Spero. The four entered Hagia Sophia, where the devout Nikolaidis began praying. No sooner than he did, a light appeared in the floor, and from it emerged a man carrying a sword. The man identified himself as Constantine XI Palaiologos, the legendary last Byzantine Emperor. Spero ran out, but Nikolaidis was awestruck, and then explained to both Pappas and the emperor the legend that Constantine XI would return when Constantinople was in Christian hands again.
Nikolaidis asked Constantine what his plans were. Constantine confidently announced his plan to regain his rule. Nikolaidis immediately pleged his alligiance to the emperor, and the two prepared to leave Hagia Sophia. However, Pappas and Kiapos realized the chaos Constantine might cause, and resolved to kill him. Pappas ordered Constantine to halt. When Nikolaidis protested that Constantine's return was a miracle, Pappas responded that miracles caused too much trouble. Pappas informed Constantine that Greece had outgrown rulers such as he. When Nikolaidis tried to shoot Pappas, Kiapos instead gunned Nikolaidis down. Pappas shot Constantine to death shortly after.