Categories > Games > Final Fantasy 8 > More Braids than Brawns

Chapter Four - Dishonorable Discharge (prompt: Apologia)

by sumthinlikhuman 0 reviews

After the incident at the excavation site, it is Kiros who faces the music.

Category: Final Fantasy 8 - Rating: R - Genres: Drama, Humor, Romance - Characters: Kiros - Warnings: [!] - Published: 2006-07-27 - Updated: 2006-07-28 - 991 words

With Ward unable to speak-and being Galbadian-and Laguna otherwise unable to be located, it fell to me and me alone to face the music when we were found adrift and brought back to Deling City for a meeting with the President and General Caraway.

Ward was given an honorable discharge, allowed to stay under military profession as long as he wasn't on the line. He chose a small, silent profession, away from prying eyes and knowing gossips, hidden away in the D-District prison as a janitor of all things.

I suppose part of my damning was that fact that I was an Officer. I knew, if Laguna had been there, he would have been the one to take blame. As it was, I was the most senior member of our disbanded squad.

The military prison were better than a lot of prisons I had seen through my years. While I sat, leg shakled to the bed and wondered what they were planning, I later learned that they had run a background and conduct check on me. While they comissioned through the line to have me discharged or court-martialed or whatever, I sat in my cell, and listened to the guards heckle the other military prisoners-rebels and defectors and other such things that I never thought I'd sit among.

There was a young man, whose cell sided mine. He was not much younger than me. He said he was from Dollet, that he was here for throwing a granade at a soldier that had attacked his sister.

He asked me, "Who did you attack?"

"No one," I told him. "I'm here for serving Galbadia, and having an idiot for a squad leader."

The boy was gone the next morning, before I woke. There was no one on either side of me, and the men and women on the other side were too far separated or too afraid to speak with me.

I wondered, in those long, dusky days, what had happened to Laguna. I wondered if he had washed ashore, and been found by fishermen like Ward and I were. I wondered if he was safe.

I wondered if he was dead. I had seen too much death in my life, and the thought of Laguna's was a sobering and disheartening thought indeed.

After six weeks, I was removed from the military prison and brought before a panel of high ranking officers. I looked like a mess, I knew-stubble think and dark; eyes darkly shadowed from lack of sleep; my uniform hanging from me with tattered edges and forlorn burns left in it. Several of the officers looked me over with a cold air. None of them knew me, none of them trusted me; I was a foreign boy with no right to my rank, as far as they were concerned.

General Calaway looked me over, than glanced at the folder spread out before him.

"Major Kiros Seagul?"

"Yessir," I muttered, unable to bring the ferver into my voice that a young man in my position should have had. I was tired. He looked me over once more, scowling a little, before focusing intently on my file.

"Are you aware of the reason for these procedings, Major Seagul?"


"Are you aware of the severity of your punishment should you be found guilty of direct insubordination of a commanding officer's order, Major Seagul?"

I was intimately aware with it, having seen it in one of my senior officers when I'd been made a member of the Blade Brigade. "Yessir."

"Do you have anything you wish to say to this tribunal in your defense, Mr Seagul?" The low blow of refusing to use my rank told me that there was no use spouting some /apologia/. The tribunal before me had already decided how they were going to deal with me.

But I was not a Centran for nothing. Pride swelled in my chest, and I straightened my back sternly, meeting the eye of every old man that stood before me. "I hope you all know you're complete fucking morons for blaming this on me. As though I could control Colonel Loire's actions or some such nonsense-."

"Ah, yes," another officer chimed in-some Major General I didn't know the name of-as he flipped through a different folder. He slapped it closed, looking down the line at General Caraway. "After these procedings, there is the matter of his association with Mr Loire as well."

"Yes, yes," General Caraway said dismissively. I felt the pride bubble as anger and stamped a foot, pulling their attentions back to me.

"My association with Colonel Loire is of no business of yours /now/, Officers, let alone after you've finished these procedings. For all we know, he's dead, and you'd defile his good reputation with stupid rumors of-."

"His reputation is hardly /good/, Mr Seagul, and is not being put into jeopardy." General Caraway steepled his fingers and leaned forward. "Your reputation, however, is quite a different story."

"So what's it to be?" I laughed humorlessly, too strained and tired to care what an idiot I was making of myself. "Court Martial? Dishonorable discharge? /The fucking firing squad/?"

"Would you prefer one over the other?"

"/Fuck you/." The anger was righteous and self-serving, anger pent from nearly falling to my death and then being locked into prison; anger at knowing that a young man had been taken to death for defending his sister; anger for the hungry grip Galbadia was extending toward my homeland.

The sentence was final. Dishonorable discharge. I was not allowed into Deling City unless escorted by an Officer, not allowed to associate with Enlisted Men. They stripped me of my uniform, gave me cold, too-small civilian appareal, and took my katals from me.

So, without a gil to my name, I set out from Deling City, unsure of where I would go, but knowing I needed to find Laguna, if he were anywhere to be found.
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