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Rupert Kesserling (798 UC (489 IC / 3598 CE))
|Affiliation:||Dominion of Fezzan|
|Occupation:||Secretary of the Landesherr|
|Died:||December 798 UC (489 IC / 3598 CE)|
|Played by:||Suzuoki Hirotaka (deceased)|
Rupert Kesserling (Japanese: ルパート・ケッセルリンク) was a Fezzani politician who was both the son and secretary of Adrian Rubinsky, the Dominion's last head of government, working to implement his father's political conspiracies. Kesserling was a highly ambitious Machiavellian schemer who saw himself as intellectually superior to everyone else and secretly plotted to eventually overthrow his father, to take his position as Fezzani Landesherr, and even attain power beyond that. Outwardly he served as Rubinsky's right hand man, becoming involved in various political schemes as his father's representative, including the arrangements for the inquiry into the loyalty of Free Planets Alliance Admiral Yang Wen-li and the abduction of Emperor Erwin Josef II. Unbeknownst to Kesserling, Rubinsky was fully aware of his son's ambitions and in the end he had his son murdered when Kesserling tried to shoot him, on the night of Reinhard von Lohengramm's invasion of Fezzan.
In the autumn of 797 UC (488 IC / 3597 CE), as the Imperial Civil War reached its conclusion, Adrian Rubinsky reassigned his secretary Nicholas Boltik as Fezzan's ambassador to the Galactic Empire and replaced him with the young Rupert Kesserling, a recent college graduate. He was also aware that Kesserling was his son that was born out of wedlock from one of his previous affairs. (LOGH: 'Farewell, Distant Memories', 'First Battle', 'Determination and Ambition')
Throughout early 798 UC (489 IC / 3598 CE) Kesserling served his father as an advisor and right hand man, dealing with both Alliance ambassador Henslow and former Imperial ambassador Jochen von Remscheid on his behalf. They decided to support the Empire due to the weakening of the Free Planets Alliance during their civil war, allowing Reinhard von Lohengramm to unite the universe so that Fezzan could monopolise its economy. First they secretly provided Imperial science and technology inspector general Anton Hilmer von Schaft with a plan to put warp engines on Geiersburg Fortress and use it to attack the Alliance-controlled Iserlohn Fortress. Kesserling later implied in a meeting with Alliance high commissioner Henslow that Fezzan could only continue giving loans to the Alliance government as long as it remained stable, worrying that another military coup like the National Salvation Military Council from last year could happen again. He then insinuated that Admiral Yang Wen-li, the brilliant commander of Iserlohn, had intentions to overthrow the Job Trunicht administration. As Kesserling and Rubinsky intended, this information was sent to Heinessen, where Trunicht decided to summon Yang to the capital for an inquiry into his loyalty as the Empire prepared to attack the fortress (although the Imperials were unaware that Yang was gone). (LOGH: 'Portraits', 'One Narrow Thread', 'Fortress vs Fortress')
By the time the Eighth Battle of Iserlohn was playing out in April and May of 798 UC (489 IC / 3598 CE), Kesserling was already involved in launching the next scheme, necessary to prevent the Alliance and Empire from coming to any sort of peace accord. The Fezzani advisor reached out to the exiled Imperial high nobles and other loyalists of the Goldenbaum Dynasty who had been living on there since their defeat by Reinhard von Lohengramm in the previous year's civil war. He convinced Alfred von Landsberg and threatened Leopold Schumacher into taking part in a plan to kidnap the child kaiser of the Empire, Erwin Josef II, and smuggle him to the Free Planets Alliance. Kesserling then convinced the former Imperial ambassador to Fezzan Jochen von Remscheid to join them in establishing a government-in-exile in the Alliance with the young emperor, having the intent of restoring the Goldenbaum Dynasty's power in the Empire. According to Kesserling, they were supporting the nobles' objective ostensibly because Reinhard was ignoring Fezzan's economic interests in the Empire. However, the Fezzanis did this in order to give Reinhard, then the Imperial prime minister, a casus belli to take the war-weary Imperial people on an invasion of the Alliance. Meanwhile the assault on Iserlohn with Geiersburg, led by Imperial Admiral Karl Gustav Kempf, ultimately failed as Yang returned to the fortress and oversaw the annihilation of Kempf's expeditionary force. (LOGH: 'Lost Things', 'The Return', 'Determination and Ambition')
In June, shortly after the Geiersburg debacle, Kesserling took care of Admiral von Schaft—their tool in implementing the fortress attack plan—as he was no longer needed, by providing the Imperial ministry of justice with documents on Schaft's various crimes, resulting in his arrest. Having gotten rid of loose ends, father and son proceeded to move into action the scheme to kidnap the child emperor in July and August. But unbeknownst to either of them, Reinhard had deduced Fezzan's plan to kidnap the emperor and confronted Fezzani high commissioner Boltik about it. Boltik revealed their entire plan and the young Imperial dictator decided to go along with it, but only to use it for his purposes. Landsberg and Schumacher pulled off the kidnapping, with indirect assistance from Reinhard, and were smuggled via the Fezzan Corridor to the Alliance. Rubinsky initially thought that Boltik had done a good job in manipulating Reinhard von Lohengramm into going along with the scheme, but Kesserling believed that it had been the other way around. Nonetheless, neither one of them anticipated that by that point Reinhard had already made up his mind to attack the Alliance by first invading and occupying Fezzan. (LOGH: 'Determination and Ambition', 'Thunder', 'The Abduction of the Young Emperor')
The Fezzanis were able to do some manipulating with the Alliance government behind the scenes to get them to accept the Imperial exiles, although the details of this remain unknown. With the announcement of the establishment of the "Galactic Empire Legitimate Government" on Heinessen in the late summer of 798 UC (489 IC / 3598 CE), and Reinhard's subsequent declaration of war on the Alliance for their complicity in the kidnapping, Kesserling's and Rubinsky's plans seem to have paid off. However, they were unaware that Boltik had sold them out and agreed to cooperate with Reinhard's impending invasion of Fezzan, ready to take up the post of interim governor-general afterwards. While attending a welcoming party for Ensign Julian Mintz and his aide Warrant Officer Louis Machungo, new Alliance military attachés to Fezzan, in the fall of 798 UC (489 IC / 3598 CE), Kesserling heard Mintz's conversation regarding the possibility of Fezzan siding with the Empire and allowing the Imperials to use the Fezzan Corridor to attack the Alliance. Although most of the attendees laughed and did not believe it, and Kesserling assured Mintz that Fezzanis valued their political independence as well as economic dominance, he later called Rubinsky and informed him of what happened. Kesserling correctly assumed that it meant Admiral Yang Wen-li, Mintz's guardian, had surmised Fezzan's ultimate plan. His father assured him that if that was the case it was too late for anything to be done about it as events were already in motion. (LOGH: 'The Arrow Is Released', 'Operation: Ragnarök', 'Invitation to a Requiem')
Around this time, Kesserling tried to get the Terraist bishop Degsby to go along with his ambitions, promising to give him control of the Church in return for his cooperation to overthrow Rubinsky. He had Degsby drugged and then filmed his involvement in numerous sinful acts, to use against him. However, while Degsby would become an apostate as a result, the unfolding events would prevent Degsby from working with him. Throughout November and early December the first phase of Operation Ragnarök continued, with Kesserling and Rubinsky noting Admiral Oskar von Reuenthal's diversionary attack on Iserlohn Fortress. However, what they were not aware of was that while the Iserlohn battle was in progress, another large fleet under Wolfgang Mittermeyer launched from Odin and entered the Fezzan Corridor. Mittermeyer then proceeded to take the planet by storm, landing troops upon reaching Fezzan to occupy it, something that neither Kesserling nor Rubinsky expected. (LOGH: 'Invitation to a Requiem', 'The Sounding of Gjallarhorn', 'Fezzan Occupied')
With Imperial troops landing and beginning to occupy different parts of the planet, Kesserling travelled to his father's official residence. Kesserling was in a relationship with Dominique Saint-Pierré, who pretended to collaborate with him on a plan to murder his father and seize power. Unbeknownst to Kesserling, Dominique was also in a relationship with Rubinsky, whom she kept informed of Kesserling's plotting. So when Kesserling had made his move his father was already prepared. After a brief conversation between father and son, in which Rubinsky informed him that he could have passed his power peacefully to him later or supported his son's endeavours financially had he instead been interested in a field other than politics, Kesserling stated that he wanted to seize power himself. He then attempted to shoot his father, only to be gunned down by Rubinsky's guards. His body was left on the floor for Imperial troops to find after Rubinsky himself fled the capital. This event would have an impact on Rubinsky for the remainder of his life, who seemed to regret the loss of his son. (LOGH: 'Fezzan Occupied')
Kesserling was a highly ambitious planner who was determined to seize power from his father, seeming to despise him. He was extremely arrogant, believing himself to be smarter than everyone else around him, and he did have considerable ability, as he would demonstrate in his service to Rubinsky. That was also partly why Rubinsky hired him for an important office although he was fresh out of college. But he wasn't smart enough, as his father was able to prevail over his son in their struggle.
He was also a student of history and philosophy, having many conversations with Rubinsky about the state of the galaxy, the Empire, and the Alliance.
- Rupert Kesserling (DVD subtitles)
- Rupert Kessellink (LD subtitles)
- ルパート・ケッセルリンク (LD/DVD subtitles — Japanese)
- Rupert Kesselring (English fan sources)
- "At any time in this nation, somebody's trying to take advantage of somebody else."
- "Holding a psychological lynching based on suspicions and conjecture is clearly a more effective measure than a public court martial."
- "Those who received an inheritance without exertion will receive a suitable trial. Those who can't withstand it and are destroyed, are not limited to the Goldenbaum Dynasty."
Kesserling's name is derived from Kesselring, a German surname literally meaning cauldron ring which likely referred originally to a person who produced cooking vessels.