Tsar Nicholas II decides to return to Petrograd, hoping his presence would calm down the protesters. However, his train was diverted to Pskov, 100 miles from Petrograd. Here his top generals from stavka and representatives of the old duma persuaded Nicholas II to abdicate to preserve the Romanov dynasty. This he did, but he also abdicated on behalf of his son and natural heir Alexei, on account of his haemophilia. This meant that the next in line was Nicholas' brother Grand Duke Michael. He refused the title, however, not wanting the problems that came with it. This meant there was no natural heir, and Russia had left the Romanov dynasty.