It was the age of the Third Expanse, when all was lost…
When the Vuri city ships entered orbit around Earth during it’s late twenty first century, the course of the two species were forever changed. No longer were they the Wanderer and the Isolated, they became the Explorers.
With the discovery of the CRuSh Drive , in the early twenty second century, Humanity and Vuri spread out from the Sol system in a colonization rush called, The First Expanse . The founding Stellar Nations were born during this century, as groups of peoples with similar ideologies, nationalities, and identities left the confines of Earth to find new homes among the stars.
Even as these Stellar Nations grew in both power and influence, they each felt they had a claim on their star of origin… The Lone Blue Gem… Earth. Many of the great Stellar Nations claimed Earth as their own, while Earth, itself, sought to maintain its own sovereignty… and thus began, The War of Sol.
After nearly eighty years of bloodshed, violence, and death, Earth won its freedom. With the help of some of it’s allies, the Galactic Protectorate Alliance was formed to act as a peacekeeping force, for both Earth, and the other Stellar Nations. Maintaining a seat for each of the Stellar Nations at it’s headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, on Earth, the GPA along with its founders, brought the war to an end. It was nearly a generation… a full quarter century… before people turned their thoughts outward once more, to the stars.
In the mid twenty fourth century, The Second Expanse began. While slower than the first, this new surge of exploration and colonization lead to the discovery of the primitive Draziri and the interplanetary empire of the Squeelah .
On Earth calendar year 2563, a system survey mission lead by the Freemind Directorate, entered the star system later referred to as Starfall. It was within this system that they found a massive, ancient, orbital station over the system’s star itself. It was quickly discovered that this ancient station was an immensely powerful wormhole gateway that lead to the Sagittarius Arm of the galaxy, estimated to be nearly 50,000 light years from the known edge of civilized space.
With this doorway across the galaxy, a new wave of exploration and expansion began… The Third Expanse. Every nation wanted a foothold in the new territory and for almost 40 years a new colonial expedition ventured fourth among the stars of Sagittarius nearly every year. With each new colony, reports started coming in that the worlds of Sagittarius were… different than any others discovered or colonized in the past. Then, without warning, the colonies of Sagittarius lost all contact with their homes.
On Earth calendar year 2602, every colony within Sagittarius listened as three hours of frantic communication bursts came in from Starfall’s sister system, Star Rise. Confusing reports of unidentified space craft, Protectorate ships cutting off contact, crewmen engaging in mutiny, civilians trying to evacuate, then… just before all communications ceased, a single, lone voice came in clearly… “My god… The opened the gate. Orion won’t…”
To date, no ship that has entered within three parsecs of Star Rise has ever been heard from again. Of the score of colonies begun in Sagittarius, only a handful have been developed to a technological level. For many colonies, the people now face a reality where they have little food, little resources, and no support from either their home nations, or their neighbors. If things were not bad enough, whispers of other colonies “going dark” are making their way throughout the trade lanes.
The year is now 2700, and The Third Expanse is filled with pirates, desperate colonies, ancient ruins, and an ever creeping unease that there’s something… just… in the darkness.
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