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Federated Suns Reborn (Chapter Cover)

The Federated Suns Reborn
- Chapter 178

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October 3070
Peace Talks - Part 2

Castle Sandoval
Robinson, Le Blanc PDZ
Draconis March
Federated Suns

"No!" Tai-sa Dolmassay almost screamed. "Marlowe's Rift is MY world! I am Earl of that planet and I say you cannot have it!"

Victor looked up at the interruption of Minoru Kurita's latest "offer". It was now the third day of talks between him and the new heir of the Draconis Combine and the mood had went from poor to terrible. Minoru looked like he hadn't slept and his Tai-sa aide was worse. It had only been a matter of time until Dolmassay snapped. Still he couldn't find it in himself to feel pity for the man. "No. It was your world. Now it's my world. Occupied by my forces. With a forming civilian government which has denounced you and requested admission to the Federated Suns..."

"I will not allow you to steal my world!" Dolmassay half stood before freezing as the Elemental bodyguard in the corner merely shifted slightly. The bodyguard had joined the group after lunch on the first day.

"I didn't steal it Tai-sa... I conquered it. Or rather my 1st Ceti Hussars did." Victor explained slowly. "It will be incorporated into my realm. No bold declarations or temper tantrums will prevent that."

"Perhaps if you wanted to keep it so badly you should have defended it better... Earl." Duke Sandoval spoke with almost relish in his voice. As the meetings had ground onward he had taken an almost delight in rubbing the noses of the Kurita's in their defeat and repeated concessions. Which was exactly why he was here after all.

"My guard died defending my holdings! Overcome by a vastly superior foe!" Dolmassay snapped, hands clenched on the table.

"And that my good earl is exactly the point... Your world was overcome by a vastly superior foe. As were dozens of other worlds. A vastly superior foe. Me. My AFFS." Victor spoke coldly. "Which is why we are here. You've lost. To a vastly superior foe... Now Minoru you were saying what other worlds you are prepared to sign away... I do hope the list is a lot longer because otherwise you know what I am going to say..."

Minoru gritted his teeth at the thought of the bastard saying "Try again" to him. He had come to hate those words more than any other in any language over the last three days. Try again. Try again. Try again. It seemed to be the new motto of House Davion... He motioned to Tai-sa Jarvik Dolmassay to sit, but the older officer remained half standing staring at the Davions with hate and horror written all across his face.

Glancing at the man, Victor sighed. "Tai-sa. Sit down and allow your Lord to continue or leave. If you do leave you will not be readmitted. If you find the shame of losing your world too much... I will grant a brief adjournment for your Lord to grant you the Honor of Wakizashi... I believe the Kanrei can grant that... award."

Tai-sa Dolmassay recoiled from the table as though struck and staggered almost as though he was blind from the room. Minoru Kurita stood and glared at the First Prince. "I will see to my aide... The day my father taught you our ways and culture was a dark one, Victor Davion, one that I will curse forever..."

Victor stood, followed by his two officers, and inclined his head. "Take as long as you require, Minoru. If the Tai-sa wishes to commit Seppuku, I will allow you the rest of the day to compose yourself before you Try Again."

Reeling, the Kurita followed his aide to the door before being stopped at the door as the Davion spoke after him. "Don't curse the day your father taught me the ways and honor of the samurai, Minoru Kurita. Curse the day he showed me that he did not honor those ways in his own heart..."

As the door slammed shut behind Minoru, James Sandoval glanced at his Prince and admitted. "I always thought your learning the Kurita's culture was a mistake. That it would dilute your Davion heritage and make you less of Hanse Davion's son... I was wrong. I can admit it. You've learned the ways of our enemy and how best to beat them..."

Victor sat back down with a sigh. "Perhaps... But I wish it hadn't had to happen this way..."

The old Duke took the liberty of putting a hand on his liege lords shoulder. "I know you do. It's part of what makes you better than they are... Better than me if I'm honest, Victor."

Victor Davion who had once dreamed of marrying Omi Kurita. He closed his eyes for a second to hide the pain. "Perhaps... But damn them for forcing my hand... Damn them."

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