Kassad was born on Mars, where he grew up in the impoverished and hostile conditions of the slums of the South Tharsis Relocation Camps as a member of a minority that still called themselves Palestinians. By the age of sixteen standard years, he had fallen in with local gangs and already killed another young man. When he turned eighteen, a Tharsis Province higher circuit judge offered him the choice of serving at a Martian polar work camp or enlisting with the John Carter Brigade, a volunteer task force seeking to aid FORCE against the resurgent Glennon-Height Rebellion in the Class Three colonies. He volunteered and soon learned that he actually enjoyed the discipline and tidiness of military life.
After the John Carter Brigade was dissolved following Glennon-Height's cloned grandson death on Renaissance Vector, when he was nineteen years old, he applied to FORCE:ground and was declined. Kassad then went on a several-day drunk binge, at the end of which he woke up in the hives of Lusus with his military comlog stolen and farcaster access revoked. He worked on Lusus for a year, and the physical labor under the planet's high gravity turned him into an even more muscular individual. After saving money, he shipped out to Maui-Covenant and arrived there just days before the Island War began there. On Maui-Covenant, he was finally able to enlist in a Supply Regiment as an assistant hydrofoil driver, and quickly worked his way up to Corporal Fedmahn Kassad within less than a year. He became a distinguished soldier, having received two Distinguished Service Clusters, a Senate Commendation for valor in the Equatorial Archipelago campaign, and two Purple Hearts. He was then shipped towards Web worlds after being tapped for the FORCE command school.
The Soldier's Tale: The War Lovers
During his training with FORCE, Kassad took part in a number of combat simulations, many of which recreated historical battles from Old Earth history. While fighting alongside the English in a battle against the medieval French, he chases one of the Frenchmen into the woods and fights him at close-quarters, almost resulting in his "death." While Kassad is on the ground, a mysterious woman appears and rescues him. Kassad and the woman experience an instant attraction, and the two make love in the forest. They continue to make love many times in many locations during the simulations, and Kassad eventually learns that her name is Moneta, and that she is not simply a simulation, but an actual human being.
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