Michael von Keyserling
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Baron Keyserling (795 UC (486 IC / 3595 CE))
|Rank:||Vice Admiral (former)|
|Status:||Alive (795 UC (486 IC / 3595 CE))|
|Played by:||Kawakubo Kiyoshi|
Michael Sigismund von Keyserling (Japanese: ミヒャエル・ジギスムント・フォン・カイザーリング) was a former Imperial Vice Admiral who was infamously associated with the disastrous Imperial defeat in the Battle of Arlesheim in 792 UC (483 IC / 3592 CE).
Early life and career
Keyserling was the heir of a barony and joined the military sometime in 755 UC (446 IC / 3555 CE) upon graduation from a military school. During the same year, he went on a vacation with his friend Christoph von Basel at the artificial resort satellite Kreuznach III, where he met the love of his life, Johanna von Basel. However in 756 UC (447 IC / 3556 CE) when Keyserling proposed to her, she rejected him and ended up marrying Christoph instead. Feeling dejected over the rejection and considering himself having lost all passion for love, Keyserling decided to focus solely on his military career, though he still remained friends with the Basels. (DIS: 'Chapter II')
Later military career
By 792 UC (483 IC / 3592 CE), Keyserling was promoted to the rank of Vice Admiral and given command of a full fleet. That year, he was tasked with ambushing an Alliance fleet in Arlesheim Starzone. However, before the Alliance fleet moved into the ambush point, some ships in the Keyserling Fleet began to attack prematurely, thus exposing the Imperial position. Keyserling's fleet was decisively defeated in the subsequent Battle of Arlesheim and suffered significant losses before he managed to retreat. (DIS: 'Chapter I')
Upon his return to Odin, Keyserling was court martialled for incompetence and was subsequently demoted to Rear Admiral and dishonourably discharged from the military. He was noted to be strangely silent during the entire court martial and never attempted to deny the charges laid against him. It was later revealed that he was in fact covering up the fact that a significant portion of troops under his command were thyoxin drug addicts who launched the premature attacks as a result of drug-induced hallucinations, and that it was his friend and subordinate officer Christoph who was responsible for producing and distributing those drugs. Keyserling had endured the dishonour of being responsible for the defeat simply out of his one-sided affection for his old love Johanna. (DIS: 'Chapter I', 'Chapter III')
After his forced retirement, Keyserling lived a relatively quiet life until November 795 UC (486 IC / 3595 CE), when he was invited by the Basels for a holiday in Kreuznach III. Having not met Johanna for around ten years, he gratefully accepted the invitation. Unbeknownst to him however, Christoph had received an anonymous tip about how his drug-trafficking operation would be exposed and had suspected that Keyserling would finally expose him after three years of silence. He then arrived at Kreuznach III before schedule and attempted to murder Keyserling by sending a knife-wielding thyoxin addict against him in the hotel he was checking in. Christoph's plot was foiled when Siegfried Kircheis, who was on vacation at Kreuznach III at that time, stopped the would-be murderer and disabled him swiftly. Keyserling was thankful with Kircheis and invited him for dinner that very night. (DIS: 'Chapter I', 'Chapter II')
Keyserling soon figured out his friend's plot against him but refused to indict him until Kircheis confronted him over it. Realising belatedly that his own self-satisfaction in protecting Johanna had resulted in more and more thyoxin addicts, he ended up shooting his beloved to death to prevent her from destroying incriminating papers against Christoph. While the official records later stated that he had succeeded in clearing his own name, his exact fate after killing Johanna is unknown. (DIS: 'Chapter IV')
- Keyserling's middle name, which is shown in the signature on his letter to Kircheis in 'Chapter II' as beginning with the letter "S", is given as "Sigismund" in his entry in page 49 of the Legend of Galactic Heroes Encyclopaedia.
- Keyserlingk is an old noble family from Westphalia that dates back to the 14th century.
Keyserling was the 19th head of the Barony of Keyserling. (Legend of Galactic Heroes Encyclopaedia, p. 49)