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That last comment = absolute Fridge Brilliance.
Yep, that works. The character in Night Watch is specifically the Hon. Ronald Rust, so there's no temporal confusion there; this at least is the current Lord Rust before he becomes a Lord.
Ah, and now Jossed by Snuff, which establishes that Ronnie is notably older than Vimes.
Have not read Snuf yet, but I've never really thought his character was derailed. When Rust was shown as sympathetic and relatively intelligent, it was when he was among his fellow aristocrats. When he's around non-aristocrats, he's a pretty big jerk, and you have to take into account that Vimes' perspective isn't exactly impartial.
Also, while Vimes obviously doesn't like Rust, he often thinks of him as being honorable (although in a totally stupid and unhelpful way), which backs up the idea that Rust is a "bad guy" because of upbringing rather than malice (contrast him with Lord de Worde and other aristocrat characters).
He doesn't have to be that much older than Vimes, 15 years would do it. He'd still be seen as a shiny new officer by Older!Vimes in Nightwatch if he was late twenties/very early thirties. And Since Vimes has to be knocking on the door of fifty that would put Ronnie in his mid sixties. Which, while not that old to us these days, once upon a time not that long ago would be wheelchair and tartan rug time.
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How well does it match the trope?