Thank you for the awesome replies, guys. Good news! My dad gave me his little Savage .22 he never uses. I've been shooting it at my friends property, but kind of want a handgun for defense as well. Anyway, a friend of mine showed me his Russian Makarov and I really liked it. I was looking at perhaps getting one of those or a Taurus Model 82 police revolver.
Thoughts? I really like the history of those guns and they seem like good deals if you can find the right one.