Characters » von Oberstein Paul
Paul von Oberstein was both an admiral in Lohengramm's fleet and an advisor to Lohengramm himself. Known for his ruthless nature and artificial eyes, Oberstein used every means at his disposal to obliterate the Goldenbaum Dynasty and ensure Reinhard von Lohengramm's rise to power.
Oberstein is a genius strategist and organizer, both in war and politics. Calm and composed, he never shows any sign of emotional distress, everything he says and does is part of a well thought, reasonable plan.
Little is known of Oberstein's childhood, other than that he caught a disease rendering him blind. More than once, Oberstein commented that, had he been born but a century earlier, he might have been murdered as an infant because of his blindness in accord with the Inferior Genes Exclusion Act. Oberstein was granted sight through the use of a pair of cybernetic implants: artificial eyes.
It is likely that Oberstein was forced to endure ridicule as a child for his perceived physical inferiority, and equally likely that this abuse is what fed a deep-seated resentment in him toward the nobility of the Empire and the Goldenbaum Dynasty. At some point, Oberstein contemplated attempting a revolution of his own, but abandoned the ambition, realizing himself to be lacking the charisma required of a revolutionary leader.
Paul von Oberstein was a staff officer to Admiral Hans Dietrich von Seeckt, commander of the Imperial garrison fleet stationed at Iserlohn Fortress. Oberstein thought his own talents were wasted under an incomptent commander, and approached Siegfried Kircheis shortly after the Battle of Astarte, indicating a desire to serve under Reinhard von Lohengramm, having successfully discerned Reinhard's true political ambitions.
Shortly after Oberstein returned to Iserlohn, the fortress was attacked and subsequently captured by Free Planets Alliance Rear Admiral Yang Wenli's 13th Fleet in the Seventh Battle of Iserlohn. Oberstein attempted to persuade Admiral Seeckt to press the attack when Yang was at a disadvantage and the fate of the fortress still undecided, but Seeckt chose to ignore Oberstein, insisting on waiting, then later upon a futile attack when the fortress had already fallen. Yang killed Seeckt with a single well-placed shot from the Thor Hammer, prompting the Imperial Fleet to withdraw from the star system. Despite the loss of the flagship, Oberstein was able to successfully flee the ship before it was destroyed.
Vilified as a deserter, the Imperial Navy commanders sought to punish Oberstein for the loss of Iserlohn Fortress, seeking to court-martial and execute him. Obertsein, in response, arranged a meeting with Reinhard von Lohengramm. Oberstein openly expressed his hatred of the Goldenbaum Dynasty, and his desire to help Reinhard destroy the Goldenbaums and rule over a new, reformed Galactic Empire.
After their meeting, Reinhard decided to take Oberstein in as a subordinate and advisor. To accomplish this, he advised Kaiser Friedrich IV not to accept the resignations of the three military joint chiefs of staff, arguing that the fault for the loss of Iserlohn Fortress lay solely with Seeckt, who was dead, and Stockhausen, who was a prisoner of war. Secretary of State Klaus von Lichtenlade agreed with Reinhard's assessment, and the resignations were turned down. In exchange for this intervention on their behalf, the three joint chiefts of staff dropped any plans to punish Oberstein.
Oberstein was promoted to commodore as Reinhard's staff officer, which is unusual given that Oberstein gained no battle accolade since joining Reinhard's admiralty. During the FPA's invasion of Imperial territory, Oberstein served on the front line, at Reinhard von Lohengramm's side.
Imperial Civil War
Oberstein recommended that Ovlesser, upon capture, be allowed his life and freedom. He predicted Duke Braunschwieg's paranoia of the unharmed Ovlesser, and the Lippstadt nobles executed Ovlesser. When Oberstein learned of Westerland's impending doom, he recommended that Reinhard not prevent the eradication and use it instead to turn public opinion in the Empire against the Lippstadt Alliance, thereby shortening the civil war. Torn between the cold logic of Oberstein's words and his own moral compass, Reinhard asked when the attack was to occur to give himself time to reach a final decision. Oberstein thereupon lied to Reinhard in order to allow the incident. He told Reinhard the attack would occur in 6 days, but in reality the attack occured in 4 days and Oberstein had secretly dispatched a ship to record images of the attack. Reinhard was furious with Oberstein for the filming of the event and the clear manipulation he had been the victim of, but did not punish Oberstein over the dissimulation.
The Ascent of the Goldenlöwe Dynasty
Immediately following the Lippstadt Alliance's surrender and the end of the Imperial Civil War, High Admiral Kircheis was murdered by the chief retainer of the deceased Duke Braunschwieg, Commodore Ansbach. This sent Reinhard into a inconsolable state of mourning and his admirals were fearful of what Reinhard's remaining enemies might try to do to take advantage of his mental absence. In an attempt to prevent any possible complication in Reinhard's consolidation of power, Oberstein suggested that the various admirals make their way to Odin as quickly as possible to assert control over the Imperial Capital and, as a result, the Empire as a whole. Taking his advice, Reinhard's admirals took command of the space around Odin and forcefully seized all government and military facilities in a lightning fast operation. Once Premier Lichtenlade was apprehended and forced to commit suicide, Reinhard became the sole power in the Empire, Kaiser in all but name.
Oberstein then went to work routing out the corruption of the now puppet Goldenbaum Dynasty while building up the foundations for the future Goldenlöwe Dynasty through meticulous planning and organization. He performed his duties quickly and efficiently, but because of a total lack of visible emotion and his now famous calculating, unapologetic logic, he received the ire of his fellow admirals. One of his more notable decisions was to allow Heydrich Lang to continue his tenure as the Chief of the Internal Security Department, causing even more anger and distrust from the rest of Reinhard's subordinates.
Chief of Military Affairs
During Reinhard's second invasion of the Free Planets Alliance, Oberstein handled military administration from Fezzan. During this time he was injured in a terrorist bombing. Unlike Cornelius Lutz, who was injured in the same attack, Oberstein received little sympathy as he was highly unpopular with the other Fleet Admirals.
After the Battle of the Corridor Oberstein proposed that a senior officer be sent to Iserlohn as hostage against Yang Wenli's safe return. However, once Yang was in Imperial hands he should be executed regardless of consequence to the hostage. Oberstein explicitly stated his own readiness to be the hostage in this scenario but Reinhard rejected the plan.
Later when Oskar von Reuenthal rose up in rebellion against Reinhard, to a considerable degree due to the strong dislike he had for Oberstein and for Heydrich Lang, Oberstein expected to be sent as a special envoy to Reuenthal. When Lang protested his own inclusion in the proposed delegation on the grounds that Reuenthal would probably shoot him on sight, Oberstein unemotionally observed that the rebel admiral's hatred for him was just as strong.
Despite constantly being viewed with distrust, and despite occasionally toying with the idea of seizing power for himself, Oberstein remained unflinchingly loyal to Reinhard von Lohengramm and the Goldenlöwe Dynasty for his entire life, never faltering in the least.
After the Battle of Shiva when Reinhard returned to Fezzan, aware that he was terminally ill, he agreed with Oberstein to use himself as a lure to draw out the remaining Terraists. Oberstein let it be known that Reinhard expected to recover and would then resume his mission to destroy the organization entirely as a blow against the Terraists. As expected this led to an attack on the temporary Imperial Residence, repeating their earlier attempt that had been foiled by Kessler.
Although the Terrarists were unsuccessful, Oberstein was mortally wounded by a bomb and refused futile medical efforts. He left a message for his butler advising of where his will could be found and instructions as to how his dog should be treated. He died within thirty minutes of the attack.
Voice actor: Kaneto Shiozawa
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