The Ziru Sirka

The Vilani are one of the three major branches of Humaniti (the other two being the Zhodani and the Solomani or Terrans). All of these (and the over 40 other minor branches) originated on Terra. Approximately 300,000 BC the mysterious Ancients removed samples of Humans from Terra and deposited them on various worlds throughout space for reasons unknown. Those Humans deposited on Vland evolved into the Vilani. The prime feature of the evolution of the Vilani was their alieness from their environment. Whilst Vland was on the face of it a hospitable world for Human habitation, its biosphere was incompatible with Human biology. It was this alieness that was to play a fundamental role in the evolution of the Vilani. Because of differences in amino acids and basic proteins there was virtually no life on Vland which could act as a food source for the Vilani

The Ziru Sirka (Grand Empire of the Stars) was a massive interstellar state. At its height it encompassed over 15,000 star systems and included portions of 27 sectors, even though most of these systems remained unexploited due to technological limitations (notably the poor Vilani biomedical technology). By the time of the Interstellar Wars the Ziru Sirka had long passed its prime and was well on the path towards its ultimate collapse. For over 1500 years the Ziru Sirka had remained a static entity, maintaining its control by ruthlessly enforcing cultural and technological rigidity. Eventually the Ziru Sirka faltered and when the Terrans defeated the central fleet in the 9th Interstellar War, its prestige and authority were fatally compromised. From that point onwards the fate of the Empire was sealed as their own population lost faith in the Ziru Sirka and their many disaffected subject races rebelled.

The Ziru Sirka has its origins in the earliest Vilani explorations into space. In 4717 BC the Vilani discovered the secrets of Jump Drive (the first race to do so since the enigmatic ancients). With this new discovery the Vilani spread to the stars along the Vilani Main (a region of stars easily accessible with only jump 1 capable ships). As they expanded they encountered many other races; none of whom possessed the secret of jump drives, most of whom were considerably less advanced technologically than the Vilani. Gradually advanced technology was spread to these new races by the Vilani. In the process they thus absorbed much of Vilani culture and came to be dominated economically by the Vilani. However, these client races then spread Jump drive to still more races who did not absorb Vilani culture and laws. This situation was intolerable to the Vilani as it directly threatened their supremacy. Their response was the forcible incorporation of all races who possessed jump drive into a single Vilani state; this period is known to history as the Consolidation Wars. These wars lasted for over 1300 years (882 BC to 473 AD) and by the end there were no more starfaring races on the Vilani borders. This is usually taken as the founding of the Ziru Sirka.

With the end of the Consolidation Wars the Vilani set about the task of consolidating their rule; this was achieved by imposing a strict regime of cultural rigidity and conformity. Thus the founding of the Ziru Sirka can also be seen as marking the beginning of the Vilani’s cultural and technological stagnation. Despite the policy of rigidity, the Ziru Sirka retained a degree of vibrancy for some considerable time. Whilst exploration was halted in 518 AD and all research had come to a halt within another 200 years, the Ziru Sirka did continue to expand after this time. The prime reason for this expansion was the policy that came to be known as the “Pax Vilanica”. Despite the best efforts of the Vilani, technology continued to leak across the border and small interstellar states continued to form outside of the Ziru Sirka. Under the Pax Vilanica, the Vilani undertook to forcibly absorb all such states. Under this policy the Ziru Sirka reached its greatest extent in 1018 AD. Eventually however the Ziru Sirka lost either the will or ability to enforce the Pax Vilanica; by 800 AD its application had become irregular and had virtually ceased by 1300 AD. After that date the only expansion took the form of small outposts founded in search of resources (the Vilani settlement on Barnard’s Star was an example of this).

The Consolidation Wars came late to the rimward provinces, the Vegans were only incorporated into the Ziru Sirka in 114 AD. The region never attracted much official attention and remained a relative backwater until the Terran’s crushing victory in the 8th Interstellar War. After the conquest of the Vegans the remainder of the region was ignored until 987 AD when a dissident group set up a minor state centred around Dingir. Eventually this state grew large enough to warrant action and in 1103 AD the Ziru Sirka expanded into the worlds immediately adjacent to Terra. After this the region again slipped back into obscurity until the Terrans contacted the Vilani outpost on Barnard in 2096 AD.

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