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Introduction

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Apollodorian League

Athenia
Athenia is the closest planet to the systems yellow dwarf, Olympia, considered to be the home of the gods. With a singular moon, Sparta, Athenia is like the other planets within the inner system with Kyrene, a barren world, and Odessos, a molten world, each having their own moon. Unusually, all the terrestrial worlds within the Olympia system are of much larger size than the galactic average, with all smaller terrestrial bodies being relegated to that of moons. Beyond the inner system lies the Cradoxis asteroid belt, the gas giants Obar, Tacis, Lelantos and Thalassa, as well as the barren world of Licanus.

Olympia_System.png

Apollodorian Biology
Apollodorians are a mammalian species, native to the continental world of Athenia. Standing at just under two meters tall and weighing, on average, at 90kg, they are a capable species though much stronger and larger organisms exist across Athenia’s oceans and plains. They are the only sapient organism native to Athenia, though there are many sentient organisms across the planet, some of which are prized for their capabilities as companions and as workers in a variety of fields.

Evolutionary biologists have traced the Apollodorians lineage to that of a large, migratory herbivore species that existed 800 millennia prior. Roughly 300 millennia ago the Apollodorians split from their ancestor and become a more sedentary species, as well as developing an omnivorous diet. Many within the Apollodorian evolutionary field argue that this change was the key to the development of sapience and intelligence. Their ancestor may now be extinct, but a smaller cousin still exists along the northern plains and offers a unique insight into Apollodorian evolutionary history. Primarily, Athenia is dominated by mammalian species, on land and in the oceans, though there are a small number of reptilian, piscine and avian species. However, the evolutionary history of these other classes, namely a lack of fossil evidence, has led to a common belief that some of these species may not even be native to Athenia.

Apollodorians have a unique evolutionary feature, in that they can soak and store water in their fur, of which 80% of the body is covered by, and use it as a cooling system over a prolonged period, allowing them to endure physical exhaustion for longer, rather than relying on panting. They are also capable of shedding their fur when moving to warmer climates, though this takes place over a period of two weeks to a month depending on environmental pressures.


Species_Info.png

Apollodorian Society
The geographical features of their home world led to the Apollodorians having a long history and love affair with the seas, in which control of strategic waterways was vital for trade and warfare. The city states of antiquity and modernity continue to vie for control of these geo-strategic locations, though diplomatic and economic manoeuvring is the order of the day in the current era. Despite this, the importance of a capable of navy is still considered to be the determining factor in measuring the strength of any state.

Apollodorians are a highly social, yet argumentative, species with an ardent desire to engage in philosophical, economic, political and military discussions. Partially due to their innate curiosity and sociability, but also due to two millennia of similar governmental systems, of which Citizen Republics were the norm amongst city states, and the broader Leagues, with military service a requirement to engage in politics, commerce and property. As such, matters of state are highly personal to all Apollodorians who serve, which stands at an estimated 80% of the population, though only about 10% serve in combat roles. Military service amongst the Apollodorian League also includes many roles that other species would consider to be part of civilian life, such as civil engineering and education. This ubiquitous involvement amongst the populace with the state was not always the case, however, with slavery being a key component of Apollodorian life until a couple of centuries ago. Whilst the many city state republics have existed for over two millennia, they were de facto ruled by several influential noble families, who maintained an iron grip on the politics and trade of the state. It was not until the First Helot Rebellion that the city states began to embrace more egalitarian norms and institutions. Even so, it would be another few centuries till slavery would be outlawed for native populations, and another century later before slavery would outlawed throughout Athenia no matter ones’ place of origin.

Broadly speaking, the Apollodorian League is made up of Five Leagues, each hailing from one of the five continents that make up Athenia. Though there are numerous non-aligned city states that are also involved in the functioning of the species wide institution. The true power of the Apollodorians lies with the Five Leagues; the Tacius League, the Agothan League, the Helio League, the Zeucian League and the Periclius League. As one might have guessed, the Apollodorian League is not a unified world government, but a global diplomatic institution that has been chosen as the representative body for all Apollodorians beyond Athenia, though the organisation can trace its conception to the end of the Gigantes War, a century prior, in which the entire planet was engaged in an armed conflict lasting over ten years, resulting in over 300 million deaths. The Gigantes War was caused by a sixth great power, the Gigantes League, which sought to become the global hegemonic power. Prior to the war, the Gigantes began to work on leading the other powers to war with each other, a task in which they achieved remarkable success. Three years into the war between the Tacius League and the Zeucian League, the Gigantes struck hoping to take both Leagues by surprise in their weakened state and intimidate the other great powers into appeasement. In response the Agothan, Helio and Periclius Leagues intervened, much to the Gigantes surprise, however the might of the Gigantes took years, and millions of lives to eventually subdue and dismantle. Following the war an alliance between the Five Leagues was forged, resulting in a century of peace, which has allowed the Apollodorians to expand beyond Athenia and set-up a variety of mining and research operations throughout the inner system.

With advancements in ship drives and the discovery of hyperspace, the Apollodorian League stands ready to conquer the remainder of their system and expand beyond Athenia.

Further Information

The Apollodorian Political System
The Apollodorian political system is structured similarly across all Athenia, with the same systems of governance appearing in the city-states, to the Five Leagues, to the Apollodorian League (Fig.01) This uniformity throughout Athenia has ensured that all citizens are able to easily access, understand and engage with politics on all levels of Apollodorian society.

AL_Pol_Syst_01.png

(Fig.01)

This diagram below (Fig.02) shows the movement of power within Athenia, from the citizens, to the Apol-Magis, to the Ecclesia and finally to the Archorus.


The Apol-Magis is made up of randomly selected citizens throughout the governed region, whether this be a city state, one of the Five Leagues or the Apollodorian League. It is designed to ensure that all members of the citizenry are represented fairly, and for the most part has been a successful institution throughout Athenia. Its primary function is to vote on legislation proposed by the Ecclesia and hold the elected members of the Ecclesia to account.

The Ecclesia is an elected institution, with councillors seeking election from the citizenry every five years. The Ecclesia is made up of a variety of political parties, each seeking for a majority to develop legislation uncontested. Once legislation has been created it is then voted upon, and if approved, is sent to the Apol-Magis for final approval, after which it will become law.

Finally, the Archorus, is the name given to the palace of the reining Archon. Archons are elected every ten years and act as the representative for the state. They also act as the chair of the Ecclesia, and whilst officially they are meant to be neutral once elected, they are often individuals who have ascended through the Ecclesia in earlier life. When the Ecclesia is at a stalemate the Archon can break it, either by voting in favour for a certain proposal or by vetoing the issue for two years. Lastly, in times of crisis and war, the Archon can be given emergency powers and can act with near impunity.

As there are many Apol-Magis', Ecclesia's and Archorus' throughout Athenia, a distinction is used to separate an Ecclesia of a single city state, to one of the Five Leagues, to the one which represents all of Athenia, this simply involves adding the name of the city state or League prior to the name of the institution. For example; the Hermes Ecclesia or the Helio Ecclesia. When referring to the Ecclesia, or other institutions of the Apollodorian League, it is given the prefix Primus. For exmaple; the Primus Apol-Magis or Primus Archon.

AL_Pol_Syst_02.png

(Fig.02)
Political Parties of the Primus Ecclesia and Athenia
In the table below, the current main parties within the Primus Ecclesia are named and given a brief overview. These parties also exist, in various forms, at other city-states and Leagues.
Political_Parties.png
(Fig.03)

[A/N]
So this is my first AAR... I'd like to thank all the other authors and creators within the Stellaris AAR community who inspired me to start this. I plan on trying to write this as if it were a history book, with quotes from other books, people etc... We'll see how it goes. Hoping to get a post out each week, but I've lost count at how many times I've seen people promise that and not achieve it. So, we'll see if I can buck the trend. (Probably not).
Any feedback would be appreciated. I hope you all enjoy!
 
Last edited:

stnylan

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Welcome to AAR writing.

I think you have an excellent first post here, describing your species in broad enough strokes to avoid getting bogged down, but enough detail to intrigue.
 

volksmarschall

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Welcome to AAR-writing and the AARland community. May your first adventure into the wonderful world of AARs be memorable and successful! One suggestion, since you're asking, perhaps you could make the text slightly larger just so it's easier on the eyes. But I do love the opening screen of the home world system. The bleak but open vastness of space calls your distinguished admiralty to conquer the seas of space just as they would have the waters of Athenia.

Cheers!
 
Chapter I - Expanding Beyond Olympia

LostInACave

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Apollodorian League

“The Primus Ecclesia’s decision to approve Resolution 124(2189) was not only a defining moment in Apollodorian history and politics. Whilst there were numerous citizens who considered venturing beyond Olympia to be a fool’s errand, and an expensive one at that, much of the Ecclesia favoured the resolution with over two-thirds supporting the motion. To this day no other resolution has received such unprecedent support” (A Journey into the Stars, Xenophon, 2311: 13).

Chapter I – Expanding Beyond Olympia
Resolution 124(2189) – Impassioned Imagination
In October 2174, Primus Archon Vesus of Rhodiseus gave an impassioned speech, now named the Olympia Proclamation, to the Apollodorian League’s Primus Ecclesia in which he argued that the future for the Apollodorian species is not only beyond the inner system, but beyond Olympia itself. Unfortunately, many within the upper echelons of society laughed, arguing that it would not only be prohibitively expensive, but nearly impossible. However, his speech captured the imagination of many across Athenia leading to the election of many magistrates and councillors who were much more favourable to Vesus’ position. Eight years later, in 2182, the discovery of hyperspace and the development of a theoretical hyperspace ship drive, by Archimedes of Odeseus, catapulted the imaginative speculation of a much-loved Archon, to a reality well within reach. In November 2189, Vesus gave his last speech to the Primus Ecclesia, in which he forwarded Resolution 124(2189), before retiring as Archon of the Apollodorian League. For an Archon to forward legislation directly to the Ecclesia was, and still is, a very rare occurrence within Apollodorian society and is often considered a brazen breach of the protocols and conventions of Apollodorian institutions. Despite this, the Primus Ecclesia had little chance of halting the resolution from passing without suffering a humiliating defeat in the next election cycle. Primus Archon Vesus and Archimedes, two men with a singular vision, transformed the world of Athenia within the space of a decade.

In early 2190, a few months after the retirement of Primus Archon Vesus, he sent out an audio address from his private estate to the peoples of Athenia:

“…The passing of Resolution 124(2189) is perhaps my greatest achievement. Not only is it a legacy for myself, but a legacy for all Apollodorians. With this, we can finally reach our true potential, and it is my hope that my successor and friend, Archon Theodorus, will embrace the challenges and fortunes that undoubtedly stand before us. Together we can forge a path amongst the stars, one in which all Apollodorians can achieve greatness, one in which we finally become united under one banner. Do not misunderstand me, I do not wish to trample upon our heritage for that is our soul and our legacy, but it is time to embrace a new brotherhood. A brotherhood that only cares for the colour of your blood and the fur upon your back, no longer will the pettiness of old hold us back, for we are all Apollodorians, and our destiny awaits" (Primus Archon Vesus of Rhodiseus, 2190).
AL_Archon_01_Theodorus.png
Jumping into the Unknown
Within the first year of Primus Archon Theodorus’ term, he had committed to the construction of not only a prototype spacecraft capable of traversing hyperspace, but if successful, an entire fleet dedicated to exploration, construction and defence. With September 2196 set as the launch date for the first prototype, the Primus Archon was being ambitious, overly so by some Councillors count, yet he argued such a feat was well within the capabilities of the Apollodorian people. When news broke of Theodorus’ plans, there were calls within the Primus Ecclesia to remove the Primus Archon for frivolity and waste, yet he was still wildly popular amongst the general population and many within the admiralty who desired greater defensive measures for Athenia continued to support the Primus Archon in his endeavours.

On the 17th November 2196, two months late and nearly a 100 million drachma over-budget the ALS Icarus was ready to test the first hyperspace ship drive ever built by the Apollodorians. Piloted by a small crew of five including the inventor of the drive, Archimedes, they were to launch from the edge of the Olympia system, a location which took over six months to reach from Athenia, before launching to Olympia’s closest star, Sarpocchus. On the 2nd of May, the ALS Icarus entered hyperspace, thanks to the support, ingenuity and love from all Apollodorians throughout the Olympia system. All Athenia held its breath whilst they waited for the return of the Icarus, with predictions estimating that they may go without contact for nearly two weeks, possibly even longer, the mood amongst the citizenry was anxious with excitement and dread. On May 24th, the ALS Icarus re-entered the Olympia system to the wonderous joy of all Apollodorians. Many who doubted the venture suddenly found themselves having to quietly retract their statements, whilst Primus Archon Theodorus was granted additional funding for the construction of his fleet.

The journey of the ALS Icarus was instrumental in the development of the next generation of hyperspace capable spacecraft. Alterations to the drive were needed to ensure greater power control, as well as minor alterations to the hull and shields. Unfortunately, the crew were unconscious during the hyperspace jump, but valuable data from the journey regarding their physiology was key to developing systems that would allow the crew to remain conscious and alert when entering and exiting hyperspace.


Just as when Apollodorians landed on Athenia’s moon of Sparta, the jump to Sarpocchus represented a fundamental shift in Apollodorian society and psychology. How that would come to manifest in later years is for future chapters to discuss.

Within a month of the return of the Icarus, construction on the next generation of spacecraft was underway, with the ALS Plato, a science vessel named after an ancient philosopher, the ALS Gramos, a construction ship named after the largest mountain on Athenia, and three warships of the Arktos class, named after three heroes of antiquity, Arktos, Nilus and Cybele. Each would be fitted with an improved hyperspace drive, named after its inventor; Archimedes. These spacecraft represented, not just the ambitions of Primus Archon Theodorus, but the hopes and dreams of a people. With this fleet, the Apollodorian League can firmly say that they are a galactic civilisation, one worthy of respect.

Plato Class Science Vessel
Length: 82 meters
Crew: 60
Propulsion: Archimedes Drive (Gen 1)
Armament: N/A

Gramos Class Construction Vessel
Length: 64 meters
Crew: 35
Propulsion: Archimedes Drive (Gen 1)
Armament: N/A

Arktos Class Warship
Length: 108 meters
Crew: 90
Propulsion: Archimedes Drive (Gen 1)
Armament: 2 x Mass Accelerator Cannons, 1 x Laser Cannon

The ALS Plato was completed in July 2199, followed by the first of the Arktos class warships completed in August 2199, the construction ship ALS Gramos in late August 2199, and finally the two remaining Arktos class warships a few weeks later. By late September 2199, the fleet that was dreamt by Primus Archon Theodorus was complete, however, despite political pressure calling for faster deployment of the new vessels, the teams involved in their construction and those that would be serving aboard resolutely refused to take any unnecessary risks and spent months undergoing shake-down runs, training and further alterations before they were happy to proceed with the commissioning of the fleet on the eve of the new century. The new year, 2200, marked the beginning of a new era for the Apollodorian League.

Within months of the completion of the Arktos class, plans were devised for a second class of warship, designed to harass enemy ships from a distance with missiles as its main armament. The Eurotas class, used in conjunction with the Arktos class would ensure that the Apollodorian Nautikos (Navy) would be ready for a variety of engagements. It was hoped that within five years, the Nautikos would have six ships under their command, a wish that would not be met until 2210.


Eurotas Class Warship
Length: 108 meters
Crew: 65
Propulsion: Archimedes Drive (Gen 1)
Armament: 1 x Nuclear Missile System, 1 x Laser Cannon


New Worlds, New Life
The ALS Plato, commanded by renown scientist, and now explorer, Electra of Agothan remarked that her experience of entering hyperspace was akin to a surge of electricity passing through every part of your body. Not necessarily unpleasant, merely very unusual. She would later go on to write a book detailing her experiences that, even to this day, continues to be much-loved and read. It was not however, Electra’s travel to a new star system that continues to capture the imagination of many throughout the Apollodorian League, or her discovery of extra-terrestrial life. Life that was present on a planet much like our own. Even though nearly every evolutionary biologist was scrambling for the chance to visit the planet to catalogue every species and begin to answer questions long asked, but not yet answered. Whilst the planet, now named, Elektris, was just over half the size of Athenia, it had a monumental impact. Not only could Apollodorians visit new worlds, but they could possibly even live and thrive upon them. However, it would not be for years before the first colony ships were launched from Athenia.
AlienLife_Discovery.png

Sarpocchus_System_Cont_Planet.png
By early 2202, the Sarpocchus system was surveyed, at which point it was decided to continue the mission to new star system. This time, to Bistramar, a nearby system to the Galactic North-East. Unlike Sarpocchus, Bistramar was devoid of life-bearing worlds, however, the barren world of Bistramar V was home to an unusual lifeform; silicon-based worms that may even possess some form of rudimentary intelligence. More importantly a massive shipwreck was discovered in orbit of Bistramar’s only gas giant, that provides concrete proof of advanced alien life that originated beyond Athenia. Unfortunately, due to limited resources, the decision was taken to temporarily ignore the untold riches that may await within the wreck and instead continue with surveying the entire system. However, during this period a second Plato Class Science Vessel was under construction, the ALS Zeno commanded by the famous Archimedes of Odeseus, whose first mission would be to investigate the ancient shipwreck.
Vechtar_Zavonia_Event_01.png
During this period of discovery, the ALS Gramos would construct the first of many outposts in the Sarpocchus system and construct the first mining and research stations beyond Olympia. These first stations were originally exclusively owned by the state, but in time, private enterprise took root throughout the empire. The construction of these stations did not bring much fanfare to Athenia, but it was none the less instrumental in the formation of a strong and stable Apollodorian state.

In a truly amazing discovery the shipwreck orbiting the gas giant of Bistramar, was found to have contained information relating to a world of paradise named Paridayda by the Mardak Vol. A race that abandoned their home world in such of this world after being pursued by another alien species. After a four-day debate within the Primus Ecclesia and the Primus Apol-Magis, it was decided that such a prize is surely worth the risk. Following this discovery, the ALS Zeno was sent to continue exploring new systems to the Galactic South-East.
Vechtar_Zavonia_Event_02.png
The ALS Plato successfully surveyed the Bistramar system by the end of 2202 and quickly jumped to the final local system of Revak. Here, the ALS Plato would not only provide further proof of advanced alien life, but more worryingly the existence of an advanced machine race, known as the Cybrex, hellbent on the destruction of all sapient organic life in the galaxy. The mood across Athenia was dimmed at the prospect of such a foe still lurking in the dark, and the grim realisation that whilst expanding beyond Olympia offered many opportunities, there were undoubtedly great risks.
Cybrex_Discovery.png
When the ALS Zeno jumped into the Thegglan system they were momentarily surprised by sensors indicating the existence of an enormous object just outside of the systems’ gravity well. Due to the unusual readings the Zeno was quick to investigate and discovered an object which defied expectations. The object was split in two halves with prongs pointing towards each other and further prongs pointing outwards. The crew of the Zeno were perplexed as to function of the object, it was not until an early morning meeting with the department heads that an assistant researcher mumbled his belief that it may be some sort of gate. How this researcher came to this belief is still unknown to this day, but his hunch was proven correct in the following weeks. Archimedes when writing a report about the object back to Athenia, remarked that such an object would require a substantial investment and was likely part of a wider network that may span across the galaxy.
Gateway_Thegglan_01.png
“If similar objects exist throughout the galaxy, then I expect us one day be able to re-activate other gates and perhaps, even, build our own. If such a feat becomes feasible then travel across the stars will become a relatively simple task. However, I urge caution, if we are not alone in this galaxy as I, and many of my colleagues believe, then such a network could be used against us. We have already proven the existence of alien life, I suspect it is only a matter of time before we meet other empires. One can only hope that they are inferior, or at least equal, to ourselves if we hope to survive"(Communique from Archimedes to the Primus Ecclesia of the Apollodorian League, October 2204).
The rapid pace of exploration was beginning to overwhelm all aspects of Apollodorian society, with new discoveries being made every month. The Magistrates, Councillors and Archons throughout Athenia were meeting daily to maintain global stability and begin the process of creating new legal frameworks regarding space. Unsurprisingly, the scientific community were also abuzz with additional information, confirming and upending, once concrete theories. Whilst no living sapient species was found so far, it was only going to be a matter of time and with the discovery of the gateway in the Thegglan system by the ALS Zeno, that reality seemed even more likely.

By the end of 2205, the local systems, named such as they were all connected directly to the Olympia system via hyperspace, were not only surveyed but also under the control of the Apollodorian League. With this achieved, debate across Athenia hit a fever pitch, with many calling for the current holdings to be secured before further expansion was to be considered. The Primus Ecclesia on Athenia was in deadlock, as the task of answering this most vital of questions steadily escalated till it reached Primus Archon Theodorus' desk. In a surprising turn of events, Theodorus motioned that a temporary memorandum be imposed until Apollodorian science vessels had conducted thorough scans of the surrounding systems. If the systems provide vast resources were located, or if the local systems were successfully secured, then a new decision was to be made. With that answered, the question on the possible colonisation of Elektris quickly arose, once again debate raged across Athenia, as was the norm.


[A/N]
So, I got a bit carried away today... I hope you enjoy this update. I'm planning to write a few more chapters over the next week, so that I have a few in reserve. That way if anything comes up, there won't be a major break between chapters. This one was heavy on the exploration and set-up, and I'm hoping that as I create a back-log, I can also weave more inter-connected plot-points. Which should start from the next chapter!
 
Last edited:

Nikolai

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Welcome to the art of AAR writing, @LostInACave ! You have done an impressive introduction and first chapter, and I look forward to the next one! :)
 

LostInACave

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@stnylan: Thank you for you kind words. I was really worrying about that fine line.

@volksmarschall: Glad you enjoyed it. I have increased the size of the text across all my posts now. It was starting to become a struggle for myself, especially in regard to the quote text size.

@Nikolai: Thanks! Chapter II is well under way!

I've made some slight edits to the previous chapters: due to the heavy involvement of the Apollodorian Political Institutions, namely the Ecclesia, I have added that to the introductory chapter instead. I've also included a prefix when discussing the Ecclesia of the Apollodorian League, now known as the Primus Ecclesia, to differentiate it from the Ecclesia's of city states and the Five Leagues. This is for my own benefit as well.
 

stnylan

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Well they are off in a frenetic frenzy. Like children in a sweet shop.
 
Chapter II - Securing Our Domain

LostInACave

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AL_Emblem.png

Apollodorian League

"We often look back at our history and wonder what it must have been like at these pivotal moments. We are lucky to be in a position in which the past three centuries have enabled us to have excellent records, both officially and unofficially, in all forms of media. Yet, even with all that, can we really understand the joy, the despair, the love and the anger? As historians it is vital for us to account for, to give voice to, and to understand the individual. History is not simply dates, nor statistics, it is the very real recollection of events which shaped, for good or ill, the lives of all Apollodorians. The early years of Apollodorian expansion were as bewildering as they were terrifying. I for one cannot imagine the emotional strain the day to day life such a time must have taken on any person, no matter their age, gender, or position. Just something to think about" (An Individual Amongst the Ruins - Xenophon the Elder, 2346).
Chapter II – Securing Our Domain
A Good Debate
With the debate regarding system expansion halted for the foreseeable future, it was now time to decide whether to colonise the newly discovered world of Elektris in the Sarpocchus system. The forums across Athenia were dominated by the topic, with the general populace enraptured by the romance of colonising a new world, unfortunately, scientific expeditions to the planet had already noted enough variances in the bio-sphere to raise concerns. Elektris was by no means dangerous, no more so than Athenia, but despite its similarities to the Apollodorian home world, Elektris was still an alien planet. Precautions were essential. As a result, Primus Archon Theodorus, side stepped the Primus Ecclesia, and began a self-funded research initiative into the necessary steps that would be required to safely begin the colonisation of Elektris. Theodorus argued that the debate surrounded when to colonise Elektris, not if.
“I accept the authority of the Primus Ecclesia, but as is my right as a citizen I am permitted to undergo personal ventures so long as they do not conflict with the interests of the state. This initiative I am helping fund, of which there are many backers, is part of a long-term analysis on the likelihood and requirements necessary to colonise Elektris and other worlds we may find throughout the cosmos. If the Primus Ecclesia wish to defer the colonisation of Elektris, then so be it, but whether it be in ten years or fifty, Elektris will become a new home for Apollodorians” (The Colonial Spirit – Primus Archon Theodorus, 2206)
In December 2206, a second Gramos class construction ship was ordered, completing in April the following year. The ALS Cithaeron, named after the highest peak in the Agothan League, would aid in the construction of various research and mining stations local systems.

Whilst the debates raged on back on Athenia, the exploration of new star systems continued unabated, much to the delight of scientist and citizen alike. The confirmed existence and proximity of the Zorikkan Black Hole generated significant media and scientific curiosity, with many calling upon their representatives to support the construction of a new outpost to allow for the study of such a spectacular stellar phenomenon.

Zorikkan_System_BH.png
The Zorikkan Black Hole.

A few months later, in the Elthir system, the ALS Plato, discovered the remnants of a colossal space battle in orbit of Elithir 1a, in which the Cybrex and fleets of what can be assumed to be advanced sapient organics engaged in stellar conflict. The commander of the Plato, Elektra, reported that the majority of the debris was not of Cybrex origin, confirming our worst suspicions that the Cybrex may have defeated the organic races of the time. However, this was redacted from the public reports, with only the highest members of the Leagues and Nautikos receiving the full report. It would not be until 2300 that the full report would be made public as part of the celebration marking the Golden Century.

A decision was finally made by the Primus Ecclesia in October 2208, as to the fate of the continental world of Elektris. The following year would see construction of the first Apollodorian colony ship. Whilst the populace at large was both delighted and wary at the prospect of colonising new worlds, it was the Nautikos that were especially chagrined at the prospect. They argued that such an endeavour would further prolong the development of their planned Eurotas class of warships.


These objections, whilst noted were largely ignored by the Primus Ecclesia who claimed that so far, the galaxy had yet to reveal any threats to the Apollodorian League. And so, in February 2209, construction of the first colony ship began. The ALS Pineios, named after the mythical river which halted early Apollodorians migratory route across Athenia, forcing them to develop their first permanent city. The ship would take over a year to construct and required an astronomical investment, an investment that left most surprised at the decision by the usually conservative Primus Ecclesia, despite the Federali Fraternitus having the most seats they would typically fail to get the support of the other dominant party the Artis Patricii when it came to major infrastructure projects. It would later come to light that the Artis Patricii were undergoing an internal conflict, between the noble patricians of antiquity calling for a slow and stable expansion and the newly wealthy, corporate elites of modernity who wished to expand beyond Olympia as quickly as possible in search of riches. This internal conflict would come to dominate Apollodorian politics for the next decade.

Pineios Class Colony Ship
Length: 600 meters
Crew: 120
Colonists: 4,000
Propulsion: Archimedes Drive (Gen 1)
Armament: N/A

In a bid to appease the Nautikos, the construction of the first Eurotas class warship was given the go-ahead in late August 2209. With two more to be constructed over the following two years. Whilst not ideal, the admiralty was fully aware that they were considered a low priority and to take whatever they could get.


The following month, the ALS Plato jumped the furthest distance via hyperspace yet, arriving in the Seifarus system. Astronomers back on Athenia knew that the system was composed of two stars circling each other, known as a binary system, and that they suspected one was a pulsar. What came as a surprise to many within the scientific field the effect of the pulsar on ship shields. The elevated levels of radiation emitted by the star completely nulled the shields of the Plato, effectively halving her defensive capabilities. Not only was this of scientific interest, but when word reached the Nautikos they quickly began theorizing as to the strategic advantages and disadvantages such a system may have in warfare. The location of the system, regarding the hyperspace network, was also incredibly beneficial acting as a nexus point into the local systems.
Seifarus_System_Binary_Pulsar.png
The binary, pulsar system of Saifarus.
New Worlds, Old Problems
At the turn of the decade, the campaigning season was well underway. Not only were the positions of Councillors up for grabs in every Ecclesia on Athenia, but also those of Archon. Whilst the elections of 2205, and even 2200, were relatively tame affairs, the election of 2210 was becoming increasingly heated between the two dominant parties, the Federali Fraternitus and the Artis Patricii. Theodorus, whilst unpopular amongst the conservative members of the Artis Patricii and the Sextus Supremus, was well respected and loved by much of the public. As such, he was expected to win handily despite Archon Eudoxus of Hermes from the Periclius League being in contention. Unlike Theodorus who’s political career stemmed from him joining the Federali Fraternitus, Eudoxus was a member of the Artis Patricii, one who could trace his routes to the noble families of antiquity, of which he liked to remind many of his compatriots. This election was fundamentally down to two ideas; expansion and unification, or, consolidation and tradition. The Leagues of Tacius, Helio and Zeucian, the weakest of the Five Leagues, were generally in favour of greater expansion and unification and was, and still is, considered to be the “home turf” of the Federali Fraternitus. The Agothan and Periclius Leagues, however, were not only the strongest Leagues, but also the most ancient, with numerous city-states and noble families able to trace their lineages to antiquity. Legally, noble families no longer existed, but the influence and power these families still wielded ensured that in practice they still dominated regional and even global politics and economics. However, unlike the relatively unified party of the Federali Fraternitus, the Artis Patricii were split amongst the families of antiquity and the corporate elite of modernity. Broadly speaking those who had come into wealth within the past century, and many corporations across Athenia, supported the policies proposed by the Federali Fraternitus as it offered the possibility of greater wealth and expansion, whilst the older families wished to see a much slower progression, one in which the status quo and economic stability was maintained, and more importantly their power was not diminished at the prospect of a federalised Athenia. In a bold and unexpected move by the leadership within the Artis Patricii, hundreds of Councillors and thousands of members were suspended and deselected. Instead a major push was made to choose individuals who more closely aligned with the old guard. Uneasy and unofficial alliances were made with members of the Sextus Supremus, an isolationist and xenophobic party who wished to see the removal of the Primus Institutions and the reconstruction of the Sixth League, to further solidify their grip on the party.

Half way through the campaign season, the ALS Pineios was completed on February 3rd, 2210. With a full complement of crew and colonists, the Pineios set course for the small continent world of Elektris. Once there, they would set down two kilometres away from a small research facility planet-side, increasing the population to over 4,500 Apollodorians, Whilst the staff at the research station were not permanent, many had expressed a desire for long term assignments, for which the Apollodorian Scientific Institute was more than happy to grant. Plans were already in development for a second phase of colonisation, using smaller vessels, to Elektris in the coming years with hopes that the colony would reach a self-sufficient population of 10,000 within the next decade.
ALS_Pineios_Colony_01.png
The ALS Pineios leaving Athenia
ALS_Pineios_Colony_02.png
The ALS Pineios arriving at colony world of Elektris
On the 1st of March 2210, the votes were cast and tallied. Unsurprisingly, Primus Archon Theodorus of Heliopolis, was re-elected and the Federali Fraternitus saw a major upswing in the vote share managing to secure over half of all votes, due in part to the former Councillors and members of the Artis Patricii joining the Federali Fraternitus. The recently reorganised, Artis Patricii saw their figures drop, but not by nearly as much as most analysts expected. Most worryingly, however, was the sharp increase in support for the Sextus Supremus, becoming the third largest party in Athenia. The two remaining parties, the Marxo-Compus and the Apollo Divinus were nearly wiped out. This election had well and truly altered the political landscape across Athenia.
Archon_Theodorus_Election.png

AL_Elections_2210_01.png
The Federali Fraternitus bolstered by their success at the polls and with Theodorus’ popularity, charisma and vision they continued, and widened, their policies of expansion and unification. However, with numerous successes under his fur, Theodorus was becoming a very powerful and influential individual, to the point that elements within Apollodorian society were growing envious and worried. Though they still respected him and his office, and none would dare challenge him, Primus Archon Theodorus was gaining many enemies.

The first order of business was to repeal the memorandum that halted continued system expansion beyond the local systems. Theodorus and his allies, especially those within the Nautikos, wished to see Apollodorian space to expand to include the systems of Thegglan, Zorikkan, Elthir, Vermillion, Ibanadar and Eltheen. With these systems under Apollodorian control, they would not only gain access to valuable resources and research but would also have control over the three entry points into the region surrounding Apollodorian space. The Office of Nautikos Strategic Planning were already pushing for the construction of larger starbases, similar to the one in orbit of Olympia, in the Sarpocchus system as a defensive measure for the newly minted colony of Elektris. They also argued that constructing new starbases in the nexus systems of Thegglan, Eltheen and Ibanadar, and even the distant Seifarus, could act as naval and defensive stations, greatly increasing the capabilities of the Nautikos. For Theodorus and his allies across Athenia to successfully achieve their goal, they would have to spend substantial influence.

Despite the dominant position of the Federali Fraternitus within the Primus Ecclesia and in other Ecclesia’s across Athenia, the Leagues of Agothan and Periclius were dominated by the Artis Patricii and the Sextus Supremus, and together they effectively had complete hegemony over the planet. Theodorus knew he had to tread carefully, or war between the Leagues would become a very possibility. Instead he created the narrative that the second expansion was primarily for the defence of Athenia, thereby gaining a few of the less extremist members within the Sextus Supremus, though hardly enough to seal the deal. Secondly, he proposed that once all systems were under control, civilian traffic would be approved to travel beyond Olympia. Whilst such travel would remain prohibitively expensive for anyone other than the super-rich and their mega-corporations, it was enough to entice the few still hesitant former members of Artis Patricii to back him. Theodorus was transparent in his belief that Apollodorian space would not be an untamed frontier, arguing that the Apollodorian League would enforce current regulations beyond Olympia, and that any evidence found to suggest that corporations were playing dirty would result in harsh penalties, much to the relief of his allies the Federali Fraternitus.

Local_Systems_View_PreExpansion.png
By October 2212, the final Eurotas warship was completed. The 1st Fleet now consisted of six warships, three Arktos class warships, the ALS Arktos, the ALS Cybele and the ALS Nilus, and three Eurotas class warships, the ALS Eurotas, the ALS Omodamos and the ALS Chrysus. Within a month a set of training missions were in the works to take place in the Sarpocchus system, specifically in defending future colonies and deploying troops from orbit. Military planners were quick to find faults in current warship design, especially in regard to planetary defence and assault.
“… in this training exercise, half the fleet were stationed in a defensive formation in orbit of Elektris, with the other half of the attacking the planet. We discovered that defending a relatively static point in space is a fool’s errand, and significantly limits the tactical options available to our fleets. Instead of employing the full capabilities of our fleet, we were hampered by the infliction of possible harm to our colony. As such we argue that it is wiser to abandon the direct defence of the colony, and instead focus on meeting any aggressors at a suitable distance beyond the colony. Preferably at the edge or centre of the system. Secondly, when deploying ground-based assets to the surface, our current warship design philosophy is not effective. Not only do our current warships lack the space to deploy significant numbers of ground forces, but we estimate that even with larger ships, sacrifices would have to be made to offensive armaments in exchange for adequate room to house personnel and equipment necessary for a ground invasion” (Admiral Damastes of Epimethus to High Command, 2213).
Admiral_Damastes.png

AL_Navy_01.png
The 1st Fleet conducting training exercises within the Sarpocchus system.
Six months following the successful training exercises within the Sarpocchus system, the ALS Plato reported the existence of an unknown outpost within the Vanniko system. A system connected to, and North of the Thegglan system. Unfortunately, the Plato only managed to relay a short message before all contact was cut off. At the time it was unknown whether the science vessel had been attacked, or simply lost comms. Within 30 minutes of receiving the report, Primus Archon Theodorus ordered the 1st Fleet to deploy to the Thegglan system and secure it from any possible threat. When the fleet jumped into the Sarpocchus system, they began their traversal across the system, dispatching a small taskforce of ground-forces to the colony of Elektris. Fortunately, the 1st Fleet also discovered that the ALS Plato had managed to limp back to safe territory, sending a flurry of data to the 1st Fleet confirming that they were in fact attacked by an unknown group, with technology remarkably similar to that of the Nautikos. The 1st Fleet quickly ascertained the exact location of the hostile fleet thanks to an emergency broadcasting beacon of mining station in orbit of the barren world of Faraxis. Pushing their warships to their maximum thrust, Admiral Damastes hoped to reach the station before it was destroyed by the enemy fleet. Much to the dismay of some of the other Captains, Admiral Damastes ordered his fleet to cut their engines. Once in close range, he launched a salvo of missiles, taking the hostile fleet by complete surprise and quickly closed the distance to engage the fleet at knife-fight range. The 1st Fleet successfully destroyed the enemy fleet with no losses. Numerous lifepods were detected amongst the debris field, which were captured and brought aboard. The surprise amongst the marines, crew and officers was immense when it was discovered that the hostile fleet were other Apollodorians. Damastes ordered for them to be taken to the brig for interrogation. During this process, they managed to gain access to some of the ships logs, which were corroborated with the Plato, confirming that the unknown outpost in the Vanniko system was the base of these traitors. With no delay, the 1st Fleet reformed and moved onwards to destroy the outpost once and for all.

Pirate_Battle_01.png
The 1st Fleet engaging the enemy fleet, in the Sarpocchus system, with Faraxis in the background.
Pirate_Battle_03.png
The 1st Fleet destroying the pirate base in the Vinniko system.
Officially, Damastes was praised for his decisive actions, however, unofficially he was reprimanded for failing to inform High Command and for the loss of the ALS Arktos. The loss of the Arktos was felt across the Apollodorian League, not only for the loss of the brave 37 souls onboard who lost their lives, but also due to its significance as the first warship to every be constructed. It was decided upon the return of the 1st Fleet, in July 2214, that a new Arktos class vessel would be constructed bearing the name of its lost sister. None the less, Admiral Damastes would maintain his position as Admiral of the 1st Fleet for which he would command for the rest of his career.

In time it came to light that the majority of the individuals captured were pirates. Individuals who had left Athenia, via unknown means, and wished to earn a few extra Drachma via criminal acts. However, High Command suspected that there was more to their story. It would not be until 2216 that all the details would emerge. Due to a lack of evidence, however, the captured individuals were tried for piracy and sentenced to life in prison.

The conflict was also vital in furthering the knowledge of the Nautikos. Most notably, the Nautikos needed to improve the speed of their warships, either in system or in hyperspace. As such, research within the Defence Research Institute was centred on creating the next generation of thrusters and drives.

This would mark not only the Nautikos’ first fleet engagement but would mark a significant chapter in Apollodorian history. Piracy was no longer limited to the realm of history and fiction, but a very real threat to the modern system. Apollodorians from all walks of life were enticed by the prospect of piracy, partially due to its romanticism within the media, but mainly for the possibility of fame and riches. Whatever their personal reasons, one thing was known, the Second Age of Piracy had arrived.

Weeks after the successful destruction of the pirate base in the Vanniko system, the ALS Zeno found another gateway in orbit around a black hole, nicknamed Hell’s Maw. Upon further investigation it was concluded that this gateway was significantly different to its counterpart, having been constructed entirely from nanites. Furthermore, it was discovered that unlike the other gateway which we suspect is connected to numerous other spread throughout the galaxy, this variation was not only powered, though inactive, it also seemed to connect to a cluster of stars beyond the edge of our galaxy. Despite multiple attempts the gateway would not respond to any form of activation sequence. Commander Archimedes suspected that a specific verification key would be required to activate this gateway, now coined as an L-Gate. An inkling which would prove to be correct.

HellsMaw_LGateway_Event_02.png
In what would come as the coincidence of the year, according to Archimedes, the recently destroyed pirate station in the Vanniko system contained information relating to the newly discovered L-Gate which confirmed Archimedes suspicions, though he was disappointed to realise that it also confirmed that more insights would be needed before re-activating the L-Gate. How these individuals came into the possession of such information was a mystery.
HellsMaw_LGateway_Event_03.png
As well as the discovery of the L-Gate, the ALS Zeno and Plato succeeded in unearthing more information regarding the ancient machine race, known as the Cybrex. Within the L-Gate system itself, the Zeno discovered the remains of thousands organic species, all of which seemed to have died from vacuum exposure. The Plato, after undergoing repairs, returned to the Vinniko system discovering a module from a Cybrex research station. Further study concluded that the Cybrex were experimenting with cybernetics, leading to the deaths of hundreds. Whether the Cybrex were successful or not is unknown, though the lack of evidence at other sites hints that they may have failed. Commander Elektra in her report remarked; “one can only hope that these poor individuals found peace in the afterlife and that the Cybrex’s failure gave some small comfort.” Finally, after leaving the black hole system of Hell’s Maw, the Zeno came across a startling discovery that reshaped our understanding of the Cybrex entirely. Two Cybrex warforms, analogous to autonomous warships, were found in orbit of Aphris 3, having engaged each other in battle. Both warforms were heavily damaged from the battle and subsequently activated their self-destruct mechanisms, frying their neural processors. Prior to this, it was believed that the Cybrex were controlled by a single computer system, however, with this additional information it is possible that individual intelligences existed within the Cybrex. At the time this was purely speculative, and further information would not come to light for years to come.
Local_Systems_View_PostExpansion.png
By late 2215, the Apollodorian League had successfully doubled their territory to encompass the entire local region of space. Plans were already underway to build a variety of mining and research stations, as well as new starbases in the Sarpocchus and Thegglan systems. Originally, starbases were to build within the Ibanadar and Eltheen systems, but it was decided that the newly surveyed systems of Seifarus, a binary pulsar, and Aphris, a red giant, were better suited due to the greater strategic positioning.

On the 10th December 2215, after giving a speech at the Primus Ecclesia in which Theodorus detailed the next stages of Apollodorian expansion, he was approached by a crowd of reporters and civilians. Whilst security was exceptionally high, as was the norm, it did not stop a supposed camera man from detonating an improvised explosive device, disguised as a mobile camera unit. Fortunately, the explosive and subsequent explosion was relatively small and only knocked over the Primus Archon and his security detail, causing minor injuries. Unfortunately, a group of three individuals rushed towards Theodorus, disguised as medics, and hauled him to his feet. Broadcast live, across Apollodorian Space, Primus Archon Theodorus was executed on the steps of the Primus Ecclesia.

[A/N]
So, this was a pretty big chapter... With lots of stuff going on. I hope it didn't feel too sporadic or bogged down in politics. But I want to try and bring to surface the political tensions arising across Athenia. The next chapter, of course, explores the aftermath of the events in this chapter.
 
Last edited:

stnylan

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The League is growing in size, and a good first account of themselves by the navy against the pesky pirates.
 

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Primus Archon Theodorus had met a tragic fate, executed on the steps of the Primus Ecclesia. Will be interesting how this public execution will affect the rest of the League.
 
Chapter III - Lines in the Sand

LostInACave

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AL_Emblem.png

Apollodorian League

“A year ago, I lost a friend. A year ago, we lost a leader. A year ago, Athenia lost her greatest son. Primus Archon Theodorus of Heliopolis, nay, of Athenia, was the best of all of us. He was an exemplar of justice, equality, wisdom and virtue. Not only did he continue with my dream, he embraced it and transformed it, not only into a reality, but into an ideal to strive for. The past year has shown us the worst in ourselves, but it has also shown us at our best. We stood in the face of tyranny and terror and did not flinch. We did not cower, we did not surrender, and we did not perverse ourselves. I would like nothing more than for my friend to be here, beside me. But if he is to be gone, then at least he can rest, assured that Athenia has not capitulated to injustice. Rest easy my friend, for we all owe you a great debt” (Primus Archon Theodorus’ Memorial - Primus Archon Vesus, 2217).
AL_Territory_01.png
Chapter III – Lines in the Sand
Casting the Die
Within moments of the Primus Archons execution, the entirety of Apollodorian space was in a state of turmoil. Communication systems were being overloaded due to over-capacity, kicking in emergency protocols which shut down civilian communication traffic across Athenia. With no word from the perpetrators as to their allegiance or demands, accusations began to circulate the planet as to who was responsible. These accusations led to Agothan and Periclius Leagues responding to the escalating crisis by increasing their alert status and calling upon their reserves. The Leagues of Helio, Tacius and Zeucian answered in kind. With the Prime Ecclesia, the forum designed to deal with these very situations, in disarray, the chance for miscommunications and, or, misinterpretations leading to conflict was increasing rapidly. Athenia was on the brink of war, and with no Primus Archon, the situation was dire.

At an emergency meeting of the Primus Ecclesia, they called upon former Primus Archon Vesus to take temporary command of the Apollodorian League, and declared a state of emergency, thereby giving Vesus a wide range of executive powers. However, unlike Archons of the other Leagues; the Primus Institutions were limited in their operational capabilities. Control of the Nautikos, in space, and a few regiments of military police were the extent of Primus military power. Relying, instead, on the Leagues themselves for logistics, manpower and, most importantly, intelligence. This severely limited Vesus’ options, and with the intelligence passing from the Leagues to the Primus Ecclesia it was right to be suspect on the validity and legitimacy of the intel.

Over the next few weeks the shock of Theodorus’ death would begin to subside, however the situation throughout Athenia was still tense with no group yet to take responsibility for the assassination. The memorial service had been postponed indefinitely until the situation was resolved, due to fears of an attack on those in attendance, with elections also being suspended. Such a strike would cripple the leadership of every League, and major city state across the planet.

On the 4th March 2216 intelligence was leaked to the global network detailing the involvement of several high-ranking figures, and over two dozen families, from across the Agothan and Periclius Leagues in the construction of four secret warships. Warships that were used against the 1st Fleet a few years prior. Not only did this send shockwaves throughout Apollodorian society, but it came as a major shock to all that the source of the leak was from within the Agothan Intelligence Service. International condemnation came in within the hour, and demands were quickly made regarding the arrest of all those involved. Periclius Archon Eudoxos of Hermes, refused to give in, stating that they would tried by their fellow countrymen. Diplomatic protests were ignored, despite the Primus Ecclesia siding against the Periclius League. The Primus Institutions were beginning to lose clout, as the Periclius League began to systematically disregard several international conventions. This is included breaching the sovereign waters of the other Leagues and the unlawful detention of foreign nationals. The situation within Agothan was vastly different, however. In what became the ignition point for the Second League War, a sizeable portion of the city-states that made up the Agothan League, defected, arguing that they had no desire to belong to a “terrorist” League. Loyalist cities took up arms in response, calling for the unconditional surrender of the defectors. The Agothan League was now in a state of civil war.

The civil war quickly escalated into a proxy war between the Periclius League supporting Agothan loyalists and the Helio, Tacius and Zeucian Leagues supporting the defectors. Whilst the Periclius League was, arguably, the most powerful League on Athenia, the combined power of the other three was not to be ignored. The Primus Institutions were in a constant state of meetings trying to resolve the crisis, though many that supported the Periclius League simply vetoed debate. A hundred years of diplomatic advancement was being eroded in months. Officially the Primus Institutions could not support one side in the conflict, however, as continued abuses mounted, Primus Archon Vesus acted. In what would become the turning point of the crisis, Vesus declared the Periclius League to be a threat to international security and called upon all law-abiding citizens and city-states to aid in the total capitulation of the Periclius League and the Agothan loyalists. In conjunction with Vesus proclamation, the Leagues of Tacius, Helio and Zeucian ceded complete control to Primus Ecclesia, effectively altering the Primus Institutions from international organisations to that of a new state with a permanent population, territory and all associated caveats. The Archons of Tacius, Helio and Zeucian agreed to act as interim governors till elections could take place but would ultimately abide by the orders of the Primus Institutions. With the Primus Institutions now having access to its own military and intelligence service, it began the process of detaining, interrogating any suspected sympathisers of the Periclius League, including numerous Councillors from within the Primus Ecclesia and Magistrates from the Primus Apol-Magis.

In the orbit above Olympia, the 1st Fleet were watching as the world seemingly began to collapse around them. Admiral Damastes had received orders from Primus Archon Vesus to move the 1st Fleet into orbit above Athenia to offer orbital support against the Periclius League. However, throughout his own ship, the ALS Cybele, and another within the fleet, the ALS Omodamos, traitors began to systemically seize control of the ships. Within minutes, the bridges of the Cybele and the Omodamos were stormed, with Damastes and some of the crew being detained or killed. Executive Officer, Captain Philoxenos of Ionia, took command of the Cybele, declaring himself Admiral. Two warships were now under the command of an enemy force.

Admiral_Philoxenos_Traitor_01.png
Philoxenos’ first order of business was to position his two warships to a superior tactical location. The Cybele and the Omodamos were relocated to the rear of the formation, offering a superior firing solution on the engines of the other warships within the fleet. Fortunately for the rest of the fleet, the future Captain of the ALS Arktos II, Sarixia of Nessos, currently in drydock, was requesting permission to depart Olympia Station and join the fleet. Whilst the Arktos II was still undergoing construction, most of its systems were online. Philoxenos fearing another ship in the area of operations (AO) not under his command responded by calling for the Arktos II to remain in drydock. Sarixia, however, did not to wish to stand by and watch as her home was possibly obliterated, and began the process of preparing the Arktos II for departure.

Fearing the worst, Philoxenos ordered the Omodamos to launch a nuclear strike against the Arktos II, with the Cybele launching a salvo of magnetically accelerated slugs against the Nilus’ and Chrysus’ engines. In a stroke of luck, the first salvo struck the Chrysus before shields could be raised, severely damaging the engines of the warship. Limping, the Chrysus launched half of its warheads in the space of ten minutes before its reactor detonated due to a damaged cooling system from the initial attack. The explosion temporaliy blinded all ships within the system, allowing for the Nilus and the Eurotas to reposition themselves away from the Cybele which had been severely damaged from the Chrysus’ missiles and drive detonation.

CivilWar_Battle_01.png

CivilWar_Battle_02.png
In a feat of brilliance, Sarixia reversed the Arktos II allowing it to be enveloped by the shields of Olympia Station. Emerging from the explosion, akin to a Phoenix, the Arktos II fired at the Omodamos, which had already begun to turn back towards the Cybele in hopes of offering aid. With the flank exposed, the Arktos II struck repeated blows, shredding through the shields and armour of the enemy warship. Sarixia knew, however, that the Arktos II was still unprepared for a head on fight and ordered the crew to evacuate. Ordering the combat computer to set a collision course with the Omodamos, before evacuating herself. Unprepared for such a brazen move, the Omodamos failed to adjust their course in time and were obliterated. Cameras, and Apollodorians alike, from Olympia Station watched on as the ships silently crumpled against each other before a tiny star erupted and dissipated before their very eyes.
CivilWar_Battle_03.png
The Cybele, knowing that it was outmatched against the relatively unscathed Nilus and Eurotas, began to retreat. The warships still loyal to the Apollodorian League pursued their prey towards Athenia, where the Eurotas launched its nuclear arsenal alongside a salvo of slugs from the Nilus. The Cybele was destroyed, with all hands lost, including Admiral Damastes, above Athenia. With the system secure, the Nilus and Eurotas began the process of searching for and saving any allied escape pods. Enemy escape pods were ignored in direct breach of maritime law, a point of contention which nearly led to the Captains of the Nilus and Eurotas being stripped of their rank, though public pressure halted such proceedings from continuing.
CivilWar_Battle_04.png
Back on Athenia, the situation was equally as manic, with major naval, aerial and land-based combat occurring across the planet. The newly formed Primus Intelligence Service was steadily shifting away from counter-espionage towards more offensive measures, including cyber warfare. Whilst the use of nuclear weapons had so far not been used, other than in space, the possibility of this escalating towards a nuclear exchange was growing. The Periclius League and its allies were steadily losing ground, due to rising discontent amongst their own populations, and the loss of the Agothan League which had now been secured by allied forces. As a result, Primus Archon Vesus was hesitant to commit to a full assault on the Periclius continent, fearing that such a move would force their hand towards the use of nuclear weapons.
In the end, the decision to invade was unnecessary. In a surprising twist of events, Kandros of Thessalia, launched a military coup within the Periclius League. A formal communication requesting a cessation in hostilities between the rebels and allied forces was sent, which also included a clause allowing for the integration of rebel forces into the Primus military if Vesus demanded it. A few within Primus military and the Ecclesia were sceptical, but the offer was too great to ignore. In a bid to further secure loyalty, as well as gain further insight into the man, Vesus gave Kandros a prominent level of access to Primus Intelligence and allowed him a significant degree of autonomy in his operations, allowing him to successfully capture several important strategic targets, including a naval base, a nuclear missile facility and the minor city of Pellaxon. With this, allied forces began to flood into the Periclius League from two fronts. From the East, on the border with the Helio League and from the southern coast at the heart of Periclius, with the aim to split the League in two and encircle numerous strategic locations and military forces.

In the meantime, under the command of Sarixia, the 1st Fleet, now only consisting of the ALS Nilus and the ALS Eurotas, began to target nuclear weapons facilities throughout Periclius. In a simultaneous strike, in conjunction with ground forces, all known facilities were destroyed. The end of the war was in sight.

Finally, on the 25th September 2216, the Periclius League unconditionally surrendered. This was followed by an almost immediate swell of allied forces throughout the war-torn continent. Captured on film, Archon Eudoxos of Hermes was brought out in chains from the Archorus of Periclius the following day, surrounded by other prisoners and allied soldiers. Elsewhere in Periclius images were broadcast across Apollodorian space showing Primus soldiers receiving a relatively warm welcome from local citizens, despite the war, highlighting the brutality of the Periclius regime. The internment camps for prisoners of war, and foreign nationals were liberated, though much to the surprise of liberating soldiers, the individuals within these camps were well fed and treated with respect. Many suspected that the Periclius League would simply ignore international law regarding the treatment of prisoners, however, this was one case in which they were happy to be proven incorrect.

Despite the end of the war, many questions remained. Most notably, why did the Periclius and Agothan governments, alongside influential families, not only build four secret warships but also let the situation spiral out of control to all out war. Arguably, if the Agothan League did not immediately erupt into a civil war, then it is likely that the Periclius-Agothan alliance would have won the war, but it is doubtful they would have been able to maintain control of the situation for an extended period.

The motivations for these traitors, is still unknown to this day, with the leading theory being that they were worried they would see their power severely diminished as the Primus Institutions grew in power leading to the eventual federalisation of Athenia. Though why they did not simply seek to maintain their power via other means is an ongoing debate throughout academic circles. Ironically, the war hastened the development of a true federal planetary government rather than halt it. As to why so many citizens supported these individuals, well that is a much simpler answer; loyalty, duty and drachma.

A Hero Lost, a Cause Found
It would be another decade until the majority of the infrastructure damage caused by the war would be repaired, and at least another decade again until the economies throughout Athenia would start to bounce back. With fourteen million civilians’ dead, eight million soldiers killed and over twenty million injured, the war had a devastating cost in Apollodorian life.

Kandros of Thessalia was voted in as Archon of the Periclius League in an emergency session, granting him extraordinary powers due to the dire situation across the continent. Agothan was in a similar state with a few city-states reduced to rubble. In a bid to foster a sense of commonality between the Five Leagues, it was decided to launch a massive socio-economic campaign designed to rebuild the damage in all aspects, be it infrastructure, health and education, and politics. This was sponsored entirely by the Primus Institutions costing trillions in drachma, but it would lay the foundations for an economic powerhouse half a century later.

A surprising number of families involved in the conflict that had escaped capture were hunted down to be sentenced for crimes against Athenia. Some would avoid capture for decades, even fleeing off-world to remote colonies and outposts, but eventually they were all brought before the Primus Heliaia, the supreme court for all Apollodorian space, for their crimes.


Primus Archon Vesus, stepped down on the anniversary of Theodorus’ death as Primus Archon, at the long last held memorial service, once again calling for new blood to take the mantle. With the dissolution of the Five Leagues as independent entities, new organisations were in the process of being created with old ones receiving alterations. The Primus Ecclesia, surprisingly, was remaining largely the same. Due to its dual-role as a diplomatic forum and as a representative body for all Apollodorians it was well suited to continue on as previously, the only exception being an increase in the total number of seats from 300 to 500. However, the 200 newly created seats were exclusively for future colonies, with Elektris receiving three seats. This was fuelled by fears of theoretical civil war between colonies in the distant future, a war that would undoubtedly eclipse the Second League War. The new system was to allow for the various states within the federal system to have control over decisions regarding taxes, education and policing. However, the Primus institutions would have the capability to enforce minimum standards and taxes across all states to maintain balance and equality.

The militaries and connected services were to be reformed and consolidated in a single command structure, with two distinct services, the Nautikos (Navy) and the Stratia (Army). Broadly speaking the Stratia would specialise in the defence of planets, whilst the Nautikos would specialise in the defence of Apollodorian space. Sub-services, such as the wet-nautikos, the marines, and the air force would be, predominantly, given to the Stratia, with some marine and air force divisions being integrated into the Nautikos.


Elections for the various positions of Archons and Councillors for the various new, old and reformed states across Athenia, and now Elektris, took place at the turn of the new year. The election was fought between two heroes of the war, Kandros of Thessalia, the leader of the Pericilius Rebels, and Admiral Sarixia of Nessos. Kandros, despite his loyalty to the Apollodorian League, was in favour of slow expansion and defence in depth, building a strong core that would be nigh impossible to break. Whilst Sarixia, from her time in space, wished to see Apollodorians expand and explore at an even faster rate. The parallels from the last election were clear for all to see, but whilst there was difference in opinion between the two, they were strong friends and fiercely defended each other for their entire lives from fur-pulling questions.
Sarixia_Elected_01.png
Whilst the situation on Athenia was still uncertain, the most unexpected news arrived from the ALS Zeno, who had discovered a pre-FTL civilisation, known as the Dabbax, in the Ussaldon system, south of the black hole of Hell’s Maw. The Dabbax, classified as arthropods, were native to desert world of Avlik Zajkax. Preliminary scans indicated that they were progressing through the atomic age, though with their highly militarist society and biology, questions were immediately raised as to whether they would destroy themselves in nuclear fire. Archimedes, aware of the situation back home found this whole affair highly ironic. As one would expect, hundreds of xenologists were calling for an observation post to be deployed in system to analyse and study the primitive species. High Command even sent a communique giving support to the xenologists, arguing that if such a species were to achieve FTL capabalities, then they may represent a threat to the Apollodorian League. The response amongst the public was mixed; some wished to make contact, some even wished to see the Nautikos launch a first strike. Most citizens, however, acted with indifference, as the war and its effects were still the most prominent issue in most Apollodorian’s minds. Interestingly, the response a few years later to first contact with a similarly advanced species was markedly different.
Dabbax_Prim_Civ_03.png
Dabbax_Prim_Civ_04.png
During the war, Defence Research Institute (DRI) received substantial funding which continued to pay dividends following the war. This included the development of the next generation of thrusters, named afterburners after their aerial counterparts. Part of the DRI’s initiative into developing improved hyperspace drives and sublight engines, the afterburner thrusters were an offshoot program specifically designed for improving combat speed and manoeuvrability. Further research included the development of more advanced combat computers for use on Apollodorian warships. The primary aim for these new computers was to act as a cyber warfare suite, both offensively and defensively, as well as improve weapon targeting systems.


As part of Primus Archon Sarixia’s campaign pledge, a third science vessel was to be launched by the start of 2218. With the local region surveyed, Sarixia wanted more intelligence on the surrounding clusters, fully aware that doing so may increase the likelihood of meeting advanced extra-terrestrial life. In Sarixia’s own words; “better to meet friends and enemies alike on our terms, then to suddenly be faced with the barrel of a gun.” Public opinion on the matter was mixed, considering the mineral, energy and manpower needs back on Athenia, but it was accepted that Athenia needed the mineral wealth of the stars to redevelop relatively quickly and in order to find suitable deposits a third science vessel was definitely needed. And so, with the construction of the ALS Socrates, commanded by Cyrus of Atlantia, the third wave of Apollodorian expansion was underway.

[A/N]
There we go! All those political machinations came to a close in a rather spectacular way! Civil War across Athenia and the Olympia System. It was quite a bit of fun watching my own ships fight it out. I tried to find a way of allowing the fleet to bombard Athenia, but it didn't work out as planned unfortunately. Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this chapter. Any mistakes you see, or any advice you would like to give would be appreciated!
 

stnylan

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There is violence in the heavens ... which seems entirely appropriate given the naming conventions of the Apollodorians :D
 

tazzer_mazzer

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This was a super fun read, Do you mind giving the size for the starports/bases? Since you gave sizes for ships it would help with envisioning the scene.
 

J66185

Second Lieutenant
Jun 26, 2018
171
4
Ello, ello, ello, has Olympus officially gone kaput here, or Zeus is taking his weekly naptime here?
 

J66185

Second Lieutenant
Jun 26, 2018
171
4
Ahhh, I apologize if I'm annoyingly persistent, but, where's our next chapter? Or did the plebian mortals just decided it was a good idea to start fermenting their daily chaos in the halls of Olympus here?:rolleyes::Do_O
 

J66185

Second Lieutenant
Jun 26, 2018
171
4
Ok, I am starting to feel stupid for barking up at someone's doorstep and no one still answers, so I'll leave it be until the author responds, at least.:rolleyes: