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Sci-Fi: The Alulan Traverse by Leovinas
Sci-Fi: The Alulan Traverse
Continuing my series of star charts, this is one of the Alulan Traverse, the region of space immediately to the Galactic Windward of the Old Core.  Dominated by the far-reaching jump nexus at Alula Australis, the Alulan Traverse is, behind the Algolid in the Armward Reach, the longest-inhabited and most densely-colonised region outside the Old Core itself.  Broadly-speaking, the Traverse is bounded to Galactic Armward by the Pollux, Capella and Castor jump nexuses, to Galactic Coreward by that at Arcturus, and, further to Galactic Windward by the jump nexuses at Regulus and Tegmeni.

The Alula Jump nexus was the first of many multi-star jump nexuses discovered in the early Diaspora.  The discovery jump-started exploration of the Windward Reach and led to the establishment of many early colonies, most notably Atlantaea, the third outsystem colony in human history and the third founded by the International Consortium, behind Malinche and Orel.  Successive waves of colonisation, propelled by tensions in Sol and the aftermath of the Jovian War, saw the Traverse become a hotbed of colonisation efforts, spurred further by the discovery of four easily-terraformable worlds at the Tegmeni jump nexus.  The race to Tegmeni was led by the charismatic Nicolaas Van Arnhem, who after overseeing the settlement of Tegmeni and Tiberian Systems, personally led the settlement of Aleutian on what was to become the Windward Reach's dominant colony, Van Arnhemsterre.  Developing rapidly, and enjoying good link with the burgeoning Algolid colonies via the Menkalinan jump nexus, Van Arnhemsterre became the intellectual seat of the outer colonies, eventually leading them in establishing an new Diasporal accord covering both the Windward and Armward colonies: the Inter-Solar Treaty Organisation.  Meanwhile, Atlantaea had founded or convinced other colonies to come under its banner, creating the Crown Colonies of Bellerophon, Persephone, Hermione, Melbourne and Silvester.  The Procyon Confederacy and Sector Earth Authority had expanded in the region too, while extensive Chinese colonies in the central Traverse became independent following the Jovian War.

Perhaps inevitably, the Inter-Solar Treaty and the United Earth Alliance came in time to perceive each other as rivals.  Spurred in large part by the increasing authoritarianism of the Sector Earth Authority and increasing Purism of Shang-An at the dawn of the 4th Century ADH, relations between the two superpowers began a slow decline.  By 323, the last of the Great Marches on Old Earth had been thoroughly suppressed, huge banners reading "The Innocent Have Nothing To Fear" had been unfurled on Authority colonies across the DH, Shang-An had begun its purges, and a true Inter-Solar Cold War had begun.  Neither superpower was suitably equipped to rein in their most extreme significant members, and successive aggravations between Shang-An and the Authority cost at least two Allied Secretary-General their jobs.  In 344, tensions reached a head in the Talitha Incident, and war was declared between InterSol and the UEA; the ensuing First Inter-Solar War was the largest in human history.  Fighting occurred from Alphecca, to Coreward, through Arcturus and Alula, round to Pollux and Capella to Aldebaran and even Sheratan.  Only the stunted and under-developed Spinward Reach was spared the fighting.  In the war's 14th year, Alliance forces were able to take and hold the Menkalinan jump nexus, cutting the Treaty in two and allowing the separate halves to be defeated independently.  Hostilities were halted after an Earth Authority warship raiding Aleutian System fired a c-fractional kinetic javelin at Van Arnhemsterre.  The Van Arnhemsterre Strike triggered a 40-teraton blast that led to the deaths of between 500 million and 750 million people - the largest single loss-of-life event in human history.  Appalled, the Alliance ceased hostilities at once; it directly to the end of the War, the banning of c-fractional weapons, and very nearly the disbanding of the Sector Earth Authority, which was thoroughly reformed and demilitarised instead.

In the War's aftermath, the Alliance set up new Armward and Windward Federations to govern the former Inter-Solar Treaty colonies in the respective Reaches.  ArmFed would eventually challenge the Alliance to the point where a Second, much more limited, Inter-Solar War occurred between them, leading in turn to the establishment of the Alignment and the secession of the Seven Suns.  The Windward Federation, however, endures, its pacifist post-IW1 constitution still in effect.  Van Arnhemsterre, whose terraforming project was set back 150 years by the Strike, is recovering well, and is poised once again to overtake Tanganyika as WindFed's most prosperous colony.  The colony of Shang-an and its neighbours, traditional rivals of Atlantaea and Procyon, refused to be bound to WindFed, however, and declared themselves independent, creating a new Coalition of People's Planetary Republics.  Following IW2, the CPPR joined the Alignment, although its militant purism - to the point of criminalising transhumanism in all its forms - poses significant difficulties for its new partners.  Tensions between the CPPR and Alliance are high, particularly with the Interstellar Consortium (of which Atlantaea is a leading member) and Procyon Confederacy.  However, Van Arnhemsterre's shadow is long enough to rein all parties in.  For now.
Sci-Fi: The Armward Fringe by Leovinas
Sci-Fi: The Armward Fringe
This is a chart of the region known as the Armward Fringe and its surrounds, showing the known jump points and the stars they connect.  The Armward Fringe comprises a swathe of mostly dim and resource-poor stars lying to Galactic Armward of Sol, between the much richer and more clement regions of the Old Core and the fertile systems of the Algolid, a cluster lying Coreward of Algol and dominated by Aldebaran and its jump nexus.  Beyond the Algolid, the last outpost of the Inner Diaspora is a cluster of seven habitable systems known as the Seven Suns.  The Armward Fringe also clips the areas dominated by the Sheratan and Menkalinan jump nexuses.

The bold links on the chart indicate the Golden Thread, the main route linking the Pollux jump nexus, at the edge of the Old Core, with the Aldebaran jump nexus, in the Algolid.  This is the fastest route between the two, and the route by which the Algolid was first colonised - and for most of the early Diaspora, by which the Armward Fringe was entirely bypassed.  In the centuries since, both the Algolid colonies - too far from Old Earth to be governed by it, but close enough that it is nevertheless tempted to try - and the Old Core have expanded to touching point.  Two successive Inter-Solar Wars have been fought between the United Earth Alliance and the Algolid colonies (among others).

Following the Second Inter-Solar War, the League of Seven Suns split from Allied control, declaring its interests to be "in alignment" with the newly-independent Algolid colonies shorn of their former overarching power.  This new power, calling itself the Alignment based on that declaration (formally, the Union of Aligned Worlds) is now the main counterweight to the United Earth Alliance in Diasporal politics.  Keen to avoid a Third Inter-Solar War, the Alliance and the Alignment have signed the so-called "Virgin Systems Treaty".  Building on the Treaty of Menkalinan, which ended the First Inter-Solar War, and the Aldebaran Accord, which ended the Second, the Virgin Systems Treaty established the Armward Fringe as a buffer zone between the two superpowers.  The forty-odd worthless backwater systems had hitherto been host to a blizzard of tiny hardscrabble colonies that were effectively used as free ports by pirates, smugglers, slavers and others.  Under the terms of the Treaty, these systems were entirely depopulated, their eighty million-or-so inhabitants relocated to the Armward Fringe's few temperate colonies (which were increasingly joining the Alliance or Alignment out of fear).  The depopulated colonies were then dismantled, the intent being that, shorn of their populace and infrastructure, the so-called "Virgin Systems", many of which had indeed never been colonised, would cease to be worth squabbling over.

Today, the Virgin Systems are empty save for temporary automated space traffic control grids, and ships passing through.  Both Treaty signatories are responsible for maintaining order, while the displaced Virgin Systems Settlers have been scattered, the once-vibrant freelancer culture of the Fringe only remaining in the few systems in which they remain.  Sendai is the only system exempted from the Treaty; all the others without temperate worlds have been depopulated.  The Settlers remain bitterly opposed to increasing Allied and Alignment domination of the Fringe, and vehemently object to the notion of any more Fringe colonies joining either power.  Theirs has been a losing battle, however: in the years since the Virgin Systems Treaty was signed, Corinth and Anhalt have joined the Alignment, while the Alliance has extended membership to Greenway and Himalaya.  Of the remaining independent worlds, only the vastly wealthy planet of Dawn's Reach shows no sign of joining either power.  On the remaining six worlds of Casperia, Nausicaa, Tainan, Qilin, Messina and Carniola, bitter political disputes are arising as factions vie to support joining either power - or, in the case of the Settlers, none.  Whether the Virgin Systems Treaty will survive their succumbing to the inevitable remains to be seen - the Armward Fringe is rapidly becoming caught between an immovable object and an unstoppable force.  Which superpower is which is, of course, up for debate.


Leovinas's Profile Picture

Artist | Hobbyist | Literature
United Kingdom
I'm a young novelist living in the south of Britain, not too far from London. I write fantasy and sci-fi, and who knows, I may even put the occasional extract or image up on here. :) I also think a lot of people on DeviantArt do fantastic work; you guys rock!

I've been writing my fantasy since 2001 and my sci-fi since 2002.

Current Residence: Reading, United Kingdom
Favourite genre of music: Classical, Soundtracks, Symphonic Metal
Operating System: Windows 7
MP3 player of choice: iPod touch
Wallpaper of choice: Horizon by ~hameed
Favourite cartoon character: Danger Mouse
Hello, world.

I'm on here to keep up with the great work that the other Deviants put up, and to add my own.

Give you an idea of what I'm working on:

My fantasy: a Napoleonic/Victorianesque created world with squabbling colonial empires, crumbling religions, Byzantine politics and a magic system that's as realisitic as I could get.  No elves, dwarves, dragons, super-powerful magical artefacts, forgotten scions of long-lost lines of kings, princesses to rescue, evil gods to defeat or necromancers with deformed minions.  Oh, and no Wars to Save the World, either.  Think gentleman-explorers, rakes, scoundrels, spies, politicians and confidence tricksters.

My sci-fi: a hard sci-fi setting told via characters instead of tech or Power of Plot, supposing that Earth is only politically unified *after* we start colonising other planets, set in 2600, with much the same as the fantasy setting, but no magic and with a realistic means of interstellar travel.  There's no aliens, no cyborgs, minimal lasers, no AI gods about to destroy mankind, no mind control, no time travel and almost no faster-than-light.  Oh, and no Wars to Save the World, either.  Think soldiers, rakes, scoundrels, spies, politicians and confidence tricksters. get the idea. :)  I'll post up extracts from my writing, bits and bobs of universe-building, and perhaps even some supporting art.

Let's see how this goes.

Cheers for now,
  • Mood: Nervous

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EdiePhoenix Featured By Owner 1 day ago   Digital Artist
Thanks a lot for the :+fav:
Leovinas Featured By Owner 1 day ago  Hobbyist Writer
Sure thing :)
MH11387sly Featured By Owner Dec 2, 2014
Happy Birthday!!!
Leovinas Featured By Owner Dec 2, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks, man :)
MH11387sly Featured By Owner Dec 2, 2014
no prob. anything your working on?
Leovinas Featured By Owner Dec 3, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
A few things.  Mostly playing Dragon Age at the moment though. ;) You?
(1 Reply)
MH11387sly Featured By Owner Nov 17, 2014
leloops Featured By Owner Nov 16, 2014
yay thanks for the fave!
Leovinas Featured By Owner Nov 16, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
My pleasure :)
Genkkis Featured By Owner Nov 14, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Hello :) (Smile)

thanks for the fav on my new Honor Harrington's cover :) (Smile)

See you soon :) (Smile)
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