Christopf von Michaelsen

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An interpretation of Christopf von Michaelsen
Gender: Male
Affiliation: Galactic Empire
Rank: Vice Admiral
Status: Deceased
Born: 688 UC (379 IC / 3488 CE)
Died: 751 UC (442 IC / 3551 CE)

Christopf von Michaelsen (Japanese: クリストフ・フォン・ミヒャールゼン) was an admiral in the Galactic Empire's Ministry of the Interior and a survivor of the Empire's disastrous defeat at the Second Battle of Tiamat. He was assassinated on 29 October 751 UC (442 IC / 3551 CE). (SL: 'The Journey in Search of the Exit')



Christoph von Michaelsen was born in 688 UC (379 IC / 3488 CE). An aristocrat holding the title of baron, he held the rank of vice admiral in the Imperial fleet when he was assassinated in 751 UC (442 IC / 3551 CE), at the age of 63. He spent more time working in an office of the Imperial Ministry of the Interior than as a field commander. (SL: 'A Thread from the Past')

Yang Wen-li's Hypothesis

Subverting an Empire

After investigating the mysterious Tuesday Correspondence, Yang Wen-li hypothesised that Imperial admirals Martin Otto von Siegmeister and Michaelsen collaborated together to build a massive underground spy network within the Galactic Empire, dedicated to passing tactical and strategic information to the Free Planets Alliance in the hope of restoring democratic rule to the Empire.

The successor to an Imperial barony, Michaelsen became involved in a bitter dispute over rights of succession with relatives, and became disenchanted with the Empire's aristocratic society. Some time around 717 UC (408 IC / 3517 CE) Michaelsen joined up with Siegmeister's secret intelligence organisation, and quickly rose through the ranks to become its second-in-command. Yang believed Michaelsen's convictions and his belief in democratic revolution to have been inferior to Siegmeister: he believed Michaelsen simply enjoyed wielding power from a position of authority.

"In the history of the Galactic Empire, it must have been the most competent and dangerous subversive espionage network ever created."
– Yang Wen-li (SL: 'The Journey in Search of the Exit')


Eventually, Siegmeister began to consider leaving the Empire, and to defect to the Free Planets Alliance. After his wife and daughter died in a fire at a resort hotel, Siegmeister made up his mind and turned over leadership of the organisation to Michaelsen.

Michaelsen was able to send the information his organisation collected to Siegmeister in the Alliance, who in turn gave the information to the Alliance authorities (and, later, directly to Alliance admiral Bruce Ashbey). This allowed the Alliance to win multiple stunning victories against the Empire.

By 745 UC (436 IC / 3545 CE), the Empire began to realise that information was being leaked, and initiated an investigation in secret. Michaelsen quickly became the target of suspicion, but the Empire never had sufficient evidence to arrest him, and were unable to coerce him into confessing. After Michaelsen's information led to the Empire's overwhelming defeat at the Second Battle of Tiamat, the investigation stalled, and Michaelsen decreased the organisation's activities.

After things settled down, Michaelsen resumed his organisation's activities. Though his organisation was as effective as ever, the Alliance, with Bruce Ashbey dead, now lacked the competence to fully make use of that intelligence. Realising the decline of his work, Michaelsen apparently wanted to retire, but could find no one to replace him. (SL: 'The Journey in Search of the Exit')


Six years after the Second Battle of Tiamat, at 14:30 on 29 October 751 UC (442 IC / 3551 CE), Christopf von Michaelsen was found dead in his office in the Imperial Admiralty. Regarding the circumstances of Michaelsen's death, Yang, summarising the research of Christopf von Köfenhiller in 788 UC (479 IC / 3588 CE) said:

"On that day, the personnel reassignments of 11,400 officers were to be announced, and the Imperial Ministry of War was packed with officers. At 10:30, the first transfers were announced, but those were retracted 20 minutes later, and the initial commotion took place. The Department of Personnel chief, Vice Admiral Meyer Hofen was held responsible, and he had to apologise through an in-house broadcast. But there were grumbles that his manner of apology was insolent, and denouncements were again directed his way. But the commotion died down before noon, and at 13:20 the finalised first transfers were announced."
"At this time, Vice Admiral Michaelsen peeked out of his secretarial office and, looking at the mixed sadness and happiness of the officers, just shrugged. There were many people who observed him then. Following that, the second transfers were announced at 14:30 and the hall was again filled with officers. According to the records, only Admiral Steiermark met with him that day, but he left the office at 13:15. There was testimony that someone in military uniform had secretly left the room around 14:00, it had had no value as evidence because then, the more than 10,000 people in the building would be suspects. In the end, after a long investigation, no culprit has ever been found."

In the end, Yang concluded that the truth of Christopf von Michaelsen's life will probably never be known for certain until both the Free Planets Alliance and Galactic Empire cease to exist.

"There's no material evidence. It's probable, and it's persuasive, but it's still just a hypothesis.... Both the Empire and Alliance are hiding too many historical facts under the name of military secrecy."
– Yang Wen-li (SL: 'The Journey in Search of the Exit')



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