|Author||Ilsa J. Bick|
|First published||2 August 2004|
|Era||Civil War era|
|Timeline||9-11 September 3064|
|“||On the world of Thuban, during the Steiner-Davion civil war, two regiments have squared off against each other. But the ultimate cost of such divisive fighting proves that this war will be anything but civil. Story by Ilsa J. Bick||”|
Dr. Elizabeth Trainer works as a psychiatrist with the 23rd Arcturan Guards while they are fighting their sister regiment, the 11th Arcturan Guards, where her lover Jonathan Peterson serves as a MechWarrior. One of Trainer's patients is MechWarrior Stanton, a Zeus pilot, who had a nervous breakdown because of something he refuses to talk about. Working with Stanton, Trainer finds herself agreeing with much of his despair about the situation.
As the enemy gains the upper hand, Trainer's unit is ordered to stay put to give the impression that they are still holding the line while the 23rd slowly retreats. Stanton and his 'Mech become increasingly important, and Trainer fervently works with him to get him back into the cockpit. She eventually learns that he killed his own daughter, who served in the 11th, during the fighting.
On the next day, enemy 'Mechs reach the camp who are prepared to surrender. However, Stanton unexpectedly sprints to his 'Mech, the only one left, and starts to fight. The result is a bloodbath in which both Trainer and (it is implied) Stanton are killed, as are many of the medical staff and patients. It turns out that one of the attacking 'Mechs was piloted by Jonathan Peterson, who finds Trainer's dead body at the camp site.