"All I ask for? A small ship, with overpowered engines to fly her by...and SRM's to defend her by...and two Xaser* Cannons to "mine" enemies' hulls with...yup, that's about it.
- Ronin Durguess, Captain of the Darian IV Defense Navy vessel Merry Mango
Xaser: A common term meaning an "X-Ray Laser". Commonly used to bore into the dust crust of asteroids, in which mining ships then plant charges into to bust up the crust, opening the valuable innards for mining.
Okay, it's time to be honest: the last incarnation of OSaS flopped due to me. I accept that the ideas I wanted to, and still want to, perform are too grand, and too changing, to honestly put on paper/screen. I'm never quite satisfied with what I have, and I was always tacking on, adding new things, subtracting old and wore out ideas, and that meant OSaS never left the ground. In fact, I don't consider what I originally put in OZ to be OSaS anymore - it doesn't follow what I imagine OSaS being now.
What is Of Serpents and Saints now, you say? Well, lets get started (for real this time)!
Humanity, in the late 22nd century, focused himself primarily on spaceflight. Dwindling resources frightened the political and economical higher-ups to advance the theories and laws of spaceflight, bringing forth new technologies that put man into space. As time progressed on the failing Earth, the rich and famous newcomers to the stars progressed on, followed meekly by those they left behind. The Earth, now simply known as the "Cradle"(positive-tense) or "Husk"(negative-tense), has been abandoned; a museum piece for aging historians who remember more about her than the fact that humanity came from her womb.
Humanity expanded ever outwards, away from Cradle, eventually conquering the local, neighboring systems. As of 4130, seventy-four major solar systems, including the Origin(otherwise known as "Sol") system, had fallen under the loose banner of the Terran Hegemonic Empire. During this time of growth, internal scram-jet combustion engines gave way to ion pulse-jet engines, which then split into various other drives and specific forms of propulsion that cannot be covered here. However, most of the historic moments in the history of Post-Cradle humanity came from the development of faster, better, and stronger star drives; advances in faster-than light communications; and the unfortunate Enslaver War.
|THE ENSLAVER WAR|
The best known date for first-contact with the extra-terrestrial, god-like, energy-based beings commonly known as "The Enslavers" dates back to 4136, when an expedition funded by the Hegemony unearthed an ancient alien beacon. The beacon was actually a multi-dimensional hypercube which held the "Illuminated", as they called themselves, prisoners. Opening the beacon released the Enslavers, who quickly indoctrinated the research and expeditionary crews with the belief that they were Gods who had returned to bring humanity to a new Golden Era.
Unfortunately, the Enslavers believed a militant approach was the key to victory. Using knowledge of both their ability to produce reality-altering "magic" and new-found knowledge of technology, they transformed the expeditionary group of vessels into awe-inspiring battlecruisers. Within hours of release, they set forth to "gather" followers.
While specific details have been lost in the Dark Ages that followed, this is known: within a week, the Enslavers had conquered all of human space, and were waging heavily victorious ground wars on the planets they conquered. The Enslavers moved their fleet towards the first worlds they had conquered, preparing to use their fantastic arcane technologies to help bolster the war effort. If it hadn't been for the work of military archaeologist David Cane, who returned to the beacon and somehow managed to re-seal the Enslavers within it, humanity would now be under their harsh rule.
However, things were not happy afterward: the arcane technology that maintained the Enslavers superiority proved massively unstable without their divine presence; nearly all pieces of their technology underwent spontaneous nuclear fission. The end result is now known as the "Dead" Space Region; thirteen worlds and the space between them, where the main hulk of the Enslaver fleet had been during those final moments. The empty space, even to this day, is littered with areas of intense radiation, while the worlds within were stripped of atmosphere and pocketed with massive craters; all are an intense reminder of the price humanity pays for freedom.
No world escaped such damage, though most were subjected to only pockets of such. In the end, humanity was left with many trillions of lives lost, no star fleet to re-establish communications, and no central government to reunite and restore order to the worlds of man. For two and a half centuries to follow, nearly all of humanity would be plagued with a new Dark Age. All except for one world, and one revolutionary vision that brings resentment from their fellow human kin even know; Tranquility.
More Information forthcoming.
The Alliance of Independent Governments is just that: a communal agreement between all the independent worlds, moons, habitats, and colony-ships(all known as "Independent Nations) that acts as a unifying pact between them. The Declaration of Articles, the founding codes and laws of the AIG, provides these areas with mutual support, be it financial or otherwise. During times of conflict, the DoA allows for specially-elected independent nations, known as "Marshall Delegates", to move in and break up the conflict if it begins to become too dangerous for innocent people, or the surrounding independent nations. Other specifics of the DoA and the AIG will be discussed later.
The Marshall Delegates are independent nations that have been elected by the Common Assembly, the Senate, and the Upper House, to serve a special part of the AIG Star Navy. However, their service is two-fold compared to other nations; not only to their vessels and men operate under their own governments, as well as the Common Star Navy/Common Star Militia, but they also serve as literal "War Breakers". This function is designed to prohibit outstanding and overwhelming conflicts between two nations.
When the three elective houses decide by popular vote that a war has gone too far, the group Marshall Delegates closest to the conflict are ordered to advance all their offensive capabilities towards the main front lines. Here, they are ordered to break the ranks by attacking any vessel from either nation, using advanced tactics and gear to overpower their usually more-numerous foes. Once the main lines have been conquered by the Marshall Delegates, the AIG delivers and ultimatum to the offending nations: cease and desist hostilities, or lose all orbital defensive and offensive capabilities. If any of these nations continue hostilities, the Marshall Delegates, aided by any and all CSN/CSM forces in the area, are to deliver that ultimatum to the letter.
Once this has been completed, the hostile nations are forced into a complete exile for thirty standard years, in which no outside political, economical, or other influence can be extended to them, save for the general laws, practices, and ruling bodies of the AIG. This forces these nations to return to fending for themselves on their own soil - a lesson that has possibly prevented several "theoretical conflicts" in the past.
---THE COMMON STAR NAVY/COMMON STAR MILITIA
All nations have their own defensive and offensive forces, though the former is delegated by AIG law to being 10 times the size of the latter. The specifications of these vessels vary by nation, as it has been for time immemorial. However, for all the forces a nation can have, 30% of it must be devoted to the Common Star Navy/Common Star Militia, which are under complete control of the Admirals and Generals elected by the ruling bodies of the AIG. These forces act as their name implies: they are a common naval and militia that serves as both police and military forces for the combined interests of the AIG.
While those who serve the CSN/CSM may come from various nations, they are all forced to absolve themselves from their nation's rule and control; otherwise, the idea of a communal force is halted before it even begins. They must also understand that, even though service is not a lifetime affair, they cannot return to their home-nation once they join. Upon retiring, they are allowed to live on an AIG-designated planet of their choice; if they choose to move from the nation to another, they may leave to any of the other nations that were available to them before they retired. Otherwise, they cannot move there.
All CSN and CSM technologies are standardized within the AIG, meaning that a CSN Jaguar-class corvette in the Origin system is (nearly) the exact same spec-wise as a CSM Jaguar-class corvette in the Benning's System. This goes the same for nearly all aspects of these two forces: rank, armaments, codes, et cetra. Under no circumstance can anything else be accepted, save for one: in a vessel that's assigned to a star-system, local technology can be procured and added to the vessel, but only if approved by the Captain, who must then approve it by their superiors, who must then submit a report to the Admiral above them. If the Admiral approves it, it may be installed on the ship. It can only be approved if it can safely augment the vessels combat capabilities, or adds a passive advantage that is apparent in both normal and combat aspects.
If a vessel is granted the use of procured local technology, it must be officially logged as a modification, and a hard copy of the technology must be purchased independently, by the crew, so that AIG technicians can research and eventually install the technology into all vessels of that class. Once that has occurred, that incarnation of that technology falls under the jurisdiction and ownership of the AIG's Military Branch. This makes it extremely difficult for individual vessels to get local technology, since it means the nation in question must have either a better or differing incarnation; otherwise, the technology will soon fall into military ownership, forcing the company(s) that developed and built it to only share a margin of the profit made by their investment.
One way for these companies to get the most out of the CSN/CSM is by becoming "military industries": companies and industries completely focused on providing for either branch of the military service. These companies partially own more everything they make or use to make for the military branches than their counterparts, meaning that they receive more money from the government than their counterparts. However, like the men and women who join the CSN/CSM, they cannot hold alliance to any particular nation or creed. This allows their product to be more widespread, allowing for its devaluation to come quicker than a nation-specific product. In the end, they earn little more than their counterparts, but the process is quicker and more beneficial to all involved.
Many nations, such as Dural(a moon-sized habitat located in the Jean-Luc system), are known as Common Forces Nations: nations whose industries and people are devoted to aiding the AIG in all aspects, especially the military ones. Their entire infrastructure revolves around the varying needs of the AIG and her various branches. It is these nations that retired Servicemen/Servicewomen go, which may be the reason that these nations continue to be staunch supporters of the AIG.
The AIG is not the only alliance out there; many planets outside the AIG's influence are independent nations seeking visions of power. Only one nations has managed to perform well enough to achieve something of the sort: The Al-Husam al Din Empire.
--THE AL-HUSAM AL DIN EMPIRE
As the name obviously implies, the Al-Husam al Din Empire is comprised entirely, or nearly so, of peoples who descend from the Arabic genetic and ethnic lineage. As such, the Islamic religion has persisted, even the tradition of pilgrimages to the Holy City of Mecca - despite the massive distance involved.
Husam al Din roughly translates into "Sword of the faith"; a fitting name, considering the determination and willpower of the Empire to convert all to the faith. As mankind pushed itself into the stars, hatreds and bigotry left over from the more recent conflicts spread out as well. Islamic people quickly became the target of much persecution; even as it became more widespread, many governments did little or nothing to help, since they were manned by many of the people who shared the same ideals.
To that end, a militant leader named Altair Husam al Din rallied as many men, women, and children under the Islamic faith as he could, and then set forth with them into the void beyond. He wished to found an Islamic state free of the oppressions and prejudices of yesteryear. If he has succeeded in this, it's hard to say.
The Al-Husam al Din Empire existed only on one world at the time of the Enslaver War, and much information about it is retained by the Empire. As such, what happened during and after the War, up until 4383, is unknown.
In 4383, an AIG exploration vessel, launched from the newly-independent planet-nation Avon, unfortunately encountered the descendants of Husam al Din's dream. When the Al-Husam al Din Navy encountered the vessel as she neared the half-way mark into the Amsah system, she was immediately captured as a violator of Al-Husam al Din space. The crew was eventually returned to the AIG, but the ship was kept - much to the anger and dismay of AIG officials.
Ever since, the AIG has continued to keep a weary eye on the Empire, as well as the colonies and nations nearby. Avon citizens are especially watched, thanks to their general hatred of Islam due to a majority of Christian citizens - it doesn't help that Avon is mostly populated by European ethnics, who persecuted Islamic peoples the most during the time-period of Husam al Din's flight. However, the AIG's official stance with the Empire is neutral, since the AIG is more of a unified body of governments, rather than it's own nation. Individual nations, therefore, may choose what their official stance is with the Empire, although Cradle is excused from this in order to allow Muslim pilgrims to journey to Mecca, which is now being carefully preserved and maintained by the Empire's finest historians and scholars.
|ENGINES and the SUPER-LUMINOUS SYSTEMS|
The first, and ultimately the backbone of the super-luminous Hyperdrive System to come, was the creation of Warp-Wave Emission System in 3083: by generating a wave of particles sensitive to the fabric of space, the empty space in front of the vessel would "ripple", creating a spacial draft which constantly followed it, much like how race vehicles draft off of each other in order to attain faster speeds. However, the WWES cannot exceed the limits of physics, and almost all of these systems found themselves maxed out at 4/5 the speed of light, with the exception of military WWES, capable of reaching 9/10 S/L in emergency situations.
It seemed that super-luminous drives were out of the question, forever relegated to science fiction. However, in 3220, near the end of the year, a Doctor Marcus Kollowank discovered that by focusing a specific combination of these same, spatial-sensitive particles ahead of the ship, and then forcing them into a specific, single point, he could access the "skin" of the universe, the very thing that separates the universe and whatever it is that surrounds it; by accessing this skin, ships could use their pre-installed WWES to tunnel through this skin. This new Hyperdrive System achieved speeds well over 1,000 times the speed of light, eventually increasing the distance a ship could travel by entire system-widths. Within twenty years of the development, the AIG's predecessor, the Terran Hegemonic Empire, had colonized thirty systems, bringing the total of then-colonized systems to forty-eight. More would follow in the coming centuries, although it took many of these centuries for the original thirty colonies to achieve independence from corporate and government funding. With the Enslaver war, the super-luminal systems of the Hegemony disappeared for two centuries before the return of humanity to the stars, and the eventual formation of the AIG.
As of now, in 4409, the re-discovered Hyperdrive System is the pinnacle of modern engineering when it comes to super-luminous speeds. Most ships use ion-propulsion for sub-light trips, fueled by the ionized, slightly-radioactive waste gasses from the ships Fusion Generator(s), and stray matter gathered by ram scoops at the fore of the ship(these scoops then ionize the matter, making for an easy, in/out system). Some ships, including almost all atmospheric-rated vessels, utilize a magneto-graviton system that works in conjunction with the planetary magnetic field and gravity to fly.
|UMBRELLA: ALLIANCES UNDER THE AIG|
While the AIG may have complete control over international space, as well as prohibit nations from allowing or performing certain actions or deeds, the AIG is not the overwhelming, trans-government system that everyone figured would be in place. Then again, most people believed that humanity would stamp out war once he got to the stars. They were wrong about that, too.
Nevertheless, unions and agreements are made between nations that are much more concrete than membership in the AIG. These so-called "Umbrella Alliances" must still follow AIG law, but they're limited in no other respects. These alliances are often formed by nations and their parent nations; a habitat colony funded by Omendala, for example, would most likely join in an alliance with Omendala as soon as it attained independence and became its own nation. Alliances can do as they see fit inside these restrictions - or outside, depending on the morals in question. As such, there are many, many alliances within the Umbrella.
---THE OMENDALA PROTECTORATE
Protectorate Head: Omendala, Planet, 1.465 x Cradle in size, Second-generation Nation
Specific date of Omendala colonization: February 18th, 3103
Other Notable Nations: Cassalia, Planet, .88 x Cradle in size, Second-generation Nation
Durandal, Planet, 1.1 x Cradle in size, Second-generation Nation
Tre, Planet, 2.53 x Cradle in size, Third-generation Nation
Omendala, the unifying head of the Omendala Protectorate, is one of the older second-generation(after the development of the WWES) planets colonized by humanity. After breaking off from her sponsor world of Aleeta, Omendala began a rapid expansion of industrial efforts, turning itself from a fringe colony to a full-fledged industrial powerhouse within a few short years. Producing everything from military vessels to household appliances, Omendala soon began production of her own colony vessels and colony habitats.
By the time the Hyperdrive branched out into the commercial and public markets, Omendala had birthed 334 nationality-habitats within a 30 light-second distance from her, as well as funded three very successful planetary colonies. Realizing that defensive efforts in her solar system would need to be heavily coordinated and precise, she reached out to her children in the form of an alliance. Dubbed the Omendala Protectorate, the agreement was settled so that one of Omendala's continents, the small Amishad, would house an entire military industrial complex, while in orbit a habitat/stardock would be placed in geosynchronous orbit over Amishad in order to help construct vessels for the Protectorate Defense fleet. In turn, the other colonies would have to pitch in resources and funding, as well as provide the majority of offensive forces.
Another advantageous aspect of the Protectorate is that all members get to share technology, standardizing the entire fleet with high-quality technology and training. Being one of the oldest post-Hyperdrive alliances, the Omendala Protectorate's members also fall under the AIG's Marshall Delegate pact, making the entire Protectorate a "Marshall Alliance". Many times the Protectorate's forces have been called in to impose front-line seizures, as well as trade embargoes and communications blackout operations.
Like most first and second generation nations, Omendala is reaching the end of it's massive mining operations. In fact, 87% of all materials used in Omendalan industry are imported from other nations in the Protectorate, or other nations within friendly Alliances. The AIG-supported mining ops often times trade with Omendala, as to keep relations friendly and Omendalan support continuous. Nevertheless, as mining companies pack up and leave for fresher ports, the remains of their mining excavations are being renovated by tourist and retirement companies, who see profit in the re-invention of these abandoned mines. So far, though, the opening of the first tourist site isn't expected for another eight years, and the first retirement area for another twelve.
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"You may never fire a single shot in your entire term as a Common Star Militia servicemember. Some would naively consider that a milestone, representing all that the CSM and CSN are made to be. But, it doesn't mean you will ever forget the things you will hear, see, or do during that time. Cloak and daggers has become child's play, Privates and PFCs: welcome to the Thick...may God watch over you all."
-CSM Chief Master Sergeant Andrew Ford, to CSM PFC John Karmach and the other recruits of the Common Star Militia, Outer Colonies Branch, Section 13, 319 Division, Class of 4133
-CSM Chief Master Sergeant Andrew Ford, to CSM PFC John Karmach and the other recruits of the Common Star Militia, Outer Colonies Branch, Section 13, 319 Division, Class of 4133