Author : Roi R. Czechvala, Staff Writer

“… as well as outstanding valour…”

He stood unmoving before the division. His dress blues, marking him as a Master Gunnery Sergeant of the Northern Confederacy’s elite Marine Corps, stood out under the brilliant lights against the muted grey of the NCS Carpathia’s hanger bay.

“… facing overwhelming numbers…”

His great-great grandfather had watched as flamethrowers were used to rid the caves of Guadalcanal of their Jap defenders during the Great Patriotic war.

“… facing not only an entrenched enemy…”

His lips twitched into a barely perceptible smile as he mused over the delicious irony of history’s repetitiveness. He himself had used a similar device, a plasma projector, essentially a plazer with broad band dispersal. Not particularly useful on hard targets, but remarkably effective against battle suited combatants in methane ice caves.

“… the distant shores of Europa…”

He nearly lost his military bearing as the thought of the Jap soldiers of the Asiatic Alliance spilling out of the ice cave after his initial blast. He almost laughed remembering how the environment suits dissolved from the bodies, how the flesh was rent from the bones leaving behind nothing but a carbonized skeleton.

“… saving the lives of not only his own men, but the lives of hundreds of colonists…”

Saving lives my ass, he thought to himself. He just enjoyed mowing down those soldiers.

“… a contingent of Japanese on Europa…”

“Fuckin’ Nipos,” he muttered under his breath.

“It is my honour and privilege to present the Medal of Honour…”

Clearing his thoughts, he straightened his back, and stood even taller. The epicanthic folds of his eyes becoming more pronounced as the angle of the light changed on his grave face.

“…bravery and fortitude far above and beyond what a proud nation can expect of any of her sons. Ladies and Gentlemen, distinguished guests and dignitaries, please allow me to present; Master Gunnery Sergeant Chiang Kai-shek III.

The four star general and commandant of the Marines fairly glowed as he applauded the slight man who stepped off with his left foot and took the podium.

“Sir, thank you so much. I don’t know what to say… I guess it’s just a family thing.” He beamed.

The assembled crowd rose to their feet as one, roaring their approval.

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