|Office||Warmaster of the Reydovan Military Body|
|Term of Office:||2376-2391|
|Predecessor:||Grand Admiral Kieran Devaneaux|
|Successor:||Marshal Jeremiah Neill|
|Date of Birth:||January 18, 2297|
|Place of Birth:||Caymarnian City, Reydovan Prime|
|Date of Death:||August 1, 2391|
|Place of Death:||Montagne Noire, Reydovan Prime|
|Portrayed by:||John Malkovich|
Marshal of the Reydovan Empire Matthew Ridgway Russell, Reydovan Imperial Guard, Warmaster of the Reydovan Military Body (born January 18, 2297 in Caymarnian City, Reydovan Prime; died August 1, 2391, in Montagne Noire, Reydovan Prime) is a fictional character created by Joshua Underwood in the Star Trek universe. General Russell is the most recent character in Underwood's volumous list, and is portrayed by John Malkovich.
Named for American General Matthew Ridgway - who succeeded Douglas MacArthur as military governor of Japan - Russell holds the record as the first child born in the newly-created Reydovan Empire, just over three months after Kiran Joshmaul's coronation as Emperor. A sixth-generation Eugenic, Russell grew up in the Tscholivosky stronghold of Caymarnian City, on the northern coast of Reydovan Prime's southwestern continent. His father was an Imperial politician and a member of the Tscholivosky family circle. As he grew older, however, Russell began to look on the Tscholivoskys - particularly the then-young patriarch, Grand Duke Vladimir - with disgust and contempt. That feud continues today.
Russell joined the Imperial Marine Corps in 2315 as an enlisted man, and became a staff officer for General Alexander Britanov in 2325. Seven years his senior, Britanov was somewhat reluctant to take on a man relatively inexperienced in administration, but Russell soon proved his worth, and they remained good friends for the next fifty years. In 2339, Russell was a Colonel, serving as chief of staff to General Daniel Longstreet for many years. Here his career remained at a standstill until he joined Jeremiah Neill in 2349 during the Sha'kurian War, fighting hard during the Battle of Belle Terre as commander of one of Neill's ships during the "Charge of Neill's Ninety". He left the Sha'kurian conflict a major general. He served for twenty more years before deciding to retire in 2371, at the age of 74.
Return to ServiceEdit
In September 2375, Alexander Britanov asked Russell to return to service in the Imperial Guard as a full general, and his deputy. At first, Russell was reluctant, but finally relented the following month. Russell remained obscure, but still worked hard behind the scenes with Britanov. It was his popularity with Britanov - and Imperial Chancellor Joshua Underwood - that brought him into conflict with General David Highland, the head of Reydovan Homeworld Defense, who believed himself the only officer capable of succeeding Britanov if something happened to him. Highland had many points that even Russell himself had to concede; Highland was younger and more charismatic. However, it would be the Chancellor's decision in the end run, and the Chancellor made it clear that Highland would not succeed Alexander in the event of his death.
When Artimus Devaneaux conquered Reydovan Prime in October 2375, Russell helped Alexander coordinate the resistance movements against the Defiler's rule, including the plan to attack Shadowgarde Castle. After Artimus was overthrown, Russell returned to duty with his comrade Alexander, helping the reconstruction of the Imperial military.
On January 11, 2376, Alexander Britanov was executed by Artimus while being held prisoner in the vile halls of Castle Devaneaux. The day after Alexander's death, General Highland - having escaped from Castle Devaneaux himself - attempted to petition Chancellor Underwood to make him commander of the Imperial Guard. The Chancellor was distrustful of the way in which Highland escaped from Castle Devaneaux and, infuriated by Highland's insensitivity, denied his request and had him arrested. Following the rescue of Kiran Joshmaul and the survivors of Artimus' incarceration, Underwood officially named Russell the commander of the Imperial Guard in accordance with Alexander's final wishes. In addition to his duties as commander of the Imperial Guard, Russell requested to take the duties of Minister of Defense, and Underwood accepted.
Will He Last?Edit
There are questions as to whether Russell will be able to continue to serve in his current post; at 79, he is not much younger than Alexander, and despite his Eugenic genetics, the general has begun to feel the effects of his age due to the stresses of his duties over the years. However, it is believed that Russell may live quite long, possibly longer than either Underwood or Joshmaul. It depends on whether or not he can avoid his friend Alexander's fate.
In February 2376, Joshua Underwood seemed to become unstable and began indiscriminately ordering executions. Realizing this would become part of a larger problem, Russell and Governor-General Alexander Ross ambushed the Chancellor in his office on Reydovan Prime. Much of the Imperial Parliament, as well as the Governor-General, joined Admiral Ian Taylor, the commander of the Grand Fleet of the Chancellor, and fled to Earth. On February 20, 2376, the Imperial Parliament-in-exile, knowing the truth of Underwood's condition - that he was, in fact, replaced by his mirror universe counterpart - named Russell the acting Chancellor of the Reydovan Empire until the real Underwood was found, alive or dead.
Underwood was indeed found alive, though badly paralyzed from the tortures he had suffered at the hands of Artimus. When he returned to Earth, Underwood met with Russell and the other high advisors of the Empire's officially recognized government-in-exile to crown the new Emperor. Kieran Devaneaux, the son of the Mad Emperor Artimus and Warmaster of the Reydovan Military Body, was chosen as the official successor to Kiran Joshmaul. The new Emperor Kieran appointed Russell as his successor, and promoted him to Marshal of the Reydovan Empire.
Russell served in that capacity for fifteen years, as an advisor on military matters to Emperor Kieran. But Russell had become a "backseater" in military matters, with Emperor Kieran now controlling all matters of political and military significance. To make matters worse, Kieran no longer trusted his counsel, and often dismissed the Marshal's opinions - if he didn't ignore them entirely. On August 1, 2391, distraught by the constant accusations of disloyalty and the distrust that the people fostered against him, Matthew Russell hanged himself in his office in Montagne Noire.
Marshal Alexander Britanov
| Commander of the Imperial Guard |
January 18, 2376-August 1, 2391
Imperial Guard disbanded
Grand Admiral Kieran Devaneaux
| Warmaster of the Reydovan Military Body |
March 4, 2376-August 1, 2391
Marshal Jeremiah Neill