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Prodigal Empires: Arachne II: North West Quadrant

Work in Progress…

The desert planet of Arachne II or Klarkashton lacks the conventional geography of continents and the like. The ancient Klarkash Star Empire did bequeath a clear geographical feature which has enabled geographers to divide the planet into quadrants.

That feature is the orbital elevator known as in the local Klarkash dialect as the Querec or World Tree, Midgard expats from the Nueva Esperanza moon of Arachne V picked up the name and refer to it as Yggdrasil which has been picked up by many human communities on the Red planet to refer to the elevator.

This structure arises from the canal city of Querecyht (World Tree Root)  up to an artificial moon. It has long fallen into disrepair when the first humans arrived on Klarkashton, however a small generation ship of Malagasy Émigrés aboard the Antananarivo was amongst those first humans and included a large number of engineers. They were a democratic and peaceful ship and made successful first contact with Querecyht, as the City shared many of their values. Human citizenship in Querecyht was granted following the reopening of the elevator from the hard work of the Malagasy spacefarers. The re-opened elevator meant Querecyht became the hub for space trade for the planet   and despite some ups and downs Querecyht remains a chaotic if prosperous multi-species city. To defend itself Querecyht maintains a small Querecyh Defence Force of human and Klarkashton regiments and hires mercenaries with it’s trade wealth. The elevator is protected by defence satellites bought off the peg from Maphilindo and weapon stems on the ‘stalk’ and main counterweight.

Querecyht needs some defence. The second humans on Klarkash were the Tianxia a generation ship of Chinese exiles. The name means ‘under heaven’ and is associated with concepts of political sovereignty.

 These nationalist Chinese had left earth intending to restore the Confucian values that they thought had led to Maphilindo defeat and subsequent division of China. On the long voyage this became twisted into an extreme nationalist Spartan-like creed. On arriving in orbit the Tianxia observed in the planet and assaulted the Yench Empire a major power in the North West. The black powder weapons legions of the Yench where not match for the husk of the Tianxia generation ships crashed into the capital and the sundry armed shuttles packed with the armed crew and passengers assaulted the remaining cities. Within 48 hours an Empire had fallen and a new power emerged on the surface of Klarkash.

The Tianxia is run as a nation in arms, and that nation is the ethnically Chinese and ideologically pure Tianxia. Tianxia citizens are trained from the age of 5 in their duties and those duties include military training. Suspect Tianxia humans are formed in penal battalions which are used as cannon fodder in battle. The Klarkash natives whether the Yench or their subject cities are treated as slaves. Tianxia savagery towards the indigenous peoples has been subject of condemnation both in system and within broader human space. The Tianxia has purchased a small in-system space navy and developed a colony on Arachne II as it’s dreams of conquest on Arachne II has been blocked by it’s neighbours and the need to keep large parts of the army at home to repress the slave classes.

Tianxia citizens elect an Emperor and a First Minister for 2 year terms. The Emperor officially handles domestic policy and the First Minister  foreign affairs and conquest.  Officers in the army are picked by the Emperor and First Minister and act as police as well as military leaders. Economically Tianxia has been supporting itself off plunder from the initial conquest. It’s starting t run out a slave state doesn’t seem to be performing as an economy.

There have been talk of reform. Prefect Li-Win took this further and lead some sympathetic Xianian dissidents in a coup in the far North Western city of Uinte launching a coup and declaring unilateral independence from  Tianxia about 2 years ago. With off-world support (including a Niptish Army Training Team) they have resisted Tianxia efforts of reconquest and attracted Klarkash and uman volunteers to their military who want to defeat the Tianxia. The fact Li-Win rules the city as his personal property has escaped these ideologues notice.


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