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Information

The Carpathian Bunker lies within the Carpathian Mountain Range of Romania.

Background

In 1986, Romanian dictator, Nicolae Ceausescu and his wife, Elena, ordered the construction of a secret bunker in the Carpathian Mountains. It was intended as an emergency retreat in case of an uprising. However, the Ceausescu’s also used the bunker for fancy parties. A trained staff was hired to look after the bunker, including Ion Cuza, who was in charge of security. Ion was one of the few people who knew about the hidden fortune the Ceausescu’s also had at the bunker. Said fortune was locked in a vault that only the Ceausescu’s knew the combination to.

The Romanian Revolution

Romanian Revolution

Jubilant Romanians celebrate the fall of Ceausescu.

In 1989, spawned by the openness started by Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, change and reform swept through Eastern Europe. Communist dictatorships, after decades of iron rule, toppled one after the other. The Berlin Wall was torn down.

Nicolae and Elena Ceausescu rejected any such changes in Romania, as they did not want to give up their power and the privileges that came with it. However, they could not hold history back and both were overthrown in a brief but bloody revolution that enveloped Romania that December. The Ceausescu’s attempted to flee to their Carpathian bunker, but were captured before they had a chance to reach it. On Christmas Day, 1989, Nicolae and Elena Ceausescu were quickly tried, sentenced to death, and executed by firing squad.

With Nicolae and Elena Ceausescu now dead, the staff fled the bunker, except Ion Cuza, who wanted the fortune stashed there. However, he could not get to it, as he didn't know the vault combination. He would spend the next twenty years trying to access the fortune.

Ava Nicolae

Ava

Ava Nicolae in search of her roots.

In 2002, Ava Nicolae, a Gypsy doctor who the Charmed Ones had recently befriended, decided to reconnect with her roots, which lie in Romania.

This would eventually bring her into contact with Ion Cuza. Ion was now posing as a scholar of Gypsy history, in the hope that this would help him find a way to access Ceausescu’s fortune. Said fortune was still locked away in the bunker where it had been since Nicolae and Elena Ceausescu had been executed, thirteen years before. Ava was, of course, unaware of Ion’s true intentions.

Rex and Hannah visit the bunker

In 2009, Paige Matthews introduced Rex Buckland and Hannah Webster to Ava. Paige had directed Ava to Rex, because she figured that Rex could help Ava in that quest. Ava informed Rex and Hannah of someone she has been in touch with in Romania, Ion Cuza, who claimed to have made a study of Gypsy lore and had said he had found something important regarding the Gypsies that once lived in Romania.

Travelling to Romania, Rex, Hannah, Paige, and Ava met Ion, who showed them a large cave he had allegedly found. It was, in reality, the Carpathian Mountain Bunker that Nicolae and Elena Ceausescu had ordered built, back in the mid-1980's. Ion was still after the fortune that was stored in the bunker. He had used Ava’s quest in order to get access to Rex, whom Paige and Ava had mentioned, via e-mails, had a way of translating languages. Unaware of Ion’s deception, Rex did manage to figure out the combination and open the vault, which revealed the fortune within. Ion then planned to take it for himself and held Rex at gunpoint.

However, Hannah, Paige, and Ava had discovered Ion’s past as the head of bunker security and realized he had used them to get to the fortune. Using their combined powers, Rex, Hannah, and Paige managed to stop Ion. The fortune was then used to help fund Romanian hospitals and orphanages and Ion was turned over to the proper authorities.

References

Rex and Hannah Chronicles Story No. 12: The Bunker