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Deneb Library Data: Wildside

by Pete Gray

The following library data covers the Regency's coreward Deneb Frontier, from Pretoria to coreward Namidshur. It includes historical data concerning the end of the Civil War period, the war of the Quarantine, and life on several Frontier worlds.

Ashes, Battle of: Last futile military campaign by the Assemblage of 1116, that took place in 1133-1135. The bloody standoff between the Domain of Deneb and the Assemblage had left Deneb's coreward subsectors shattered, and by the time of the Collapse an uneasy stalemate prevailed between the two warring sides. Through emissaries, Norris secured a ceasefire in 1131 that temporarily ended the fighting and permitting a reshuffling of fleet elements to trailing. The following year the new Regency ceded occupied worlds to their Vargr warlords, and incorporated them into its protective custody. Intimidated by the bold Regency actions but happy with the recognition of their claims, several corsair lords transferred their allegiance, even if reluctantly, from the Assemblage to the Regency.

Assemblage leader Arruna Kosghaele Zal acquiesced to these developments publicly, but inwardly refused to accept the frustration of his ambitions. Zal quietly mustered as many military and corsair units he could afford, and assembled them into a fleet at Ongon/Dhukhaegz (Tuglikki 0737) in 1133. The fleet entered the Regency at El D'Nah/Pretoria (Deneb 0502) and quickly overpowered the light RQS contingent guarding the system. The fleet then made its way down the Borderline, overrunning the Regency naval base at Kirklend/Pretoria. Most 61st Fleet units in the region had been drawn away by the Abandonment further to trailing, and the remaining squadrons, while technologically superior, were vastly outnumbered. Zal's forces paused briefly at Kirklend, sending out light raider units throughout Pretoria and Lamas to disrupt communications. His strategy was to soften up the 194th Fleet by scattering its units in pursuit of these light units, and then charging into the subsector at the head of his heavy units. Unfortunately for Zal, notice of the tragic results of the Sword World Landgrab did not reach him in time. Instead his heavy units waited at Kirklend throughout 1134 while the Regency mustered reinforcements at Pretoria. In 1135 Zal and his troops finally moved down towards the Safe, only to be intercepted by these reinforcements at Ash (Deneb 0504). In the resulting battle the disbelieving Zal refused to acknowledge that he had miscalculated, and committed to a battle that destroyed nearly ninety percent of his forces. Zal and his three eldest children were killed in the subsequent melee. The remainder of the Assemblage fleet attempted another invasion of the Regency later in the year, this time through Lamas Subsector, but were crushed for good at Lome (Deneb 1306).

While the outcome of the battle was never in doubt after Zal's failure to exploit his earlier gains, the victory was an important morale booster for the fledgling Regency forces, and were immortalised as the the Battle of Ashes. Zal himself has become an Ozymandias-like figure in Regency media and historical depiction, a despot who wagered the fate of his entire nation on a single bet, and lost everything. After the Battle of Ashes, surviving Vargr states reaffirmed their loyalty to the Spinward States Accords, and subsequently corsair raiding of the Regency almost ceased entirely.

Assemblage of 1116: Oppurtunistic state founded in 1116 upon recieving notification of Strephon's assassination. The state was founded by the popular dictator of Ngorsraek (Tuglikki 1937), Arruna Kosghaele Zal. Through not able to defeat the Domain of Deneb fleet en masse, a joint mustering of independent corsairs and planetary navies inflicted major damage upon many Denebian worlds in subsectors adjacent to the Assemblage, and caused major evacuations even before the arrival of Virus. The worst of this damage came in the coreward extents of Lamas and Pretoria subsectors, and many of the casualties were civilians killed in raids on commerce and ground installations.

So great was the hatred of Regency citizens and local military cadres for the Assemblage, that in the wake of the Battle of Ashes no surrender of any Assemblage affiliated units was ever accepted. Instead nearly every unit that attempted encountered was massacred, with no special distinction made between legitimate units or corsairs. Many Assemblage civilians were also massacred by enraged planetary militias on worlds where Vargr forces did not have an advantage or control.

A significant portion of the Assemblage's forces already present in the DoD's outer marches managed to stave off further assualts, and regrouped surviving stragglers. So poisonous is the relationship between locals and these holdouts that the Regency must manage strong naval patrols in coreward Deneb for the purpose of buffering the two communities. Information coming through Gehenna has indicated that several worlds in the former Assemblage are on the verge of making a recovery from Virus, and this has further inflamed tensions in the coreward Frontier.

Borlund Abandonment: The massive demographic collapse of Borlund/Lamas (Deneb 1406) in the wake of the Abandonment. Borlund's high population was the result of insane Imperial development policies that turned this marginal world into a major manufacturer of Pre-Stellar level goods for export into the Vargr Extents. With the release of Virus, and the prior demise of its markets due to Vargr raiding, the world had become a major liability to the Regency, who placed it into the Frontier. Between 1132 and the present, Borelund has lost some 50 billion of its people. Only half of this number has been due to offworld emigration, as the movement of so many people was simply impossible even with the utilization of troop transports.

Instead the world's younger citizens were induced to emigrate by the planetary government and their elders, leaving behind an aging population that has diminished through natural death. Borlund is now a world of graying elderly people, supported largely by the remittances they recieve from their descendants living elsewhere in the Regency. The local industries have largely ground to a halt, and most jobs are filled either by simple automation systems, virus resistant robots, or by offworld guest workers, many of whom are Vargr immigrants. The presence of the latter necessitates a major RQS contingent as a deterrence to Pack activities on this vulnerable world. Borlund is generally not thought of by people in the Safe as a world worth visiting, a sad casualty of necessity.

Countinghouse: High security storage facility located in a cave complex on Karst/Namidshur (Deneb 1814). It is located offshore in an old salt mine, and its location makes it nearly inaccessible to the surface. The facility is owned by the Karst government, and run by a public corporation. The extent and layout of the facility are classified, but it is rumored to be extremely large. Nearly everything imaginable has been stored in its depths at one time or another. The facility administrators do not discriminate between its customers, and its clientele ranges from the Regency government storing important documents to retirees hoping to preserve family heirlooms. A nearby private C-class starport is the sole means of outside access, as no roads lead to the facility, and the Karst COAAC interdicts the local airspace. The facility itself is sealed from the mainland by flooded access tunnels, and only submersible vehicles operated by the Countinghouse administration are permitted to enter its confines at any time.

Fleets, Regency Frontier:

  • 1. 55th Fleet (Roughriders): Deneb Sector "Swing Fleet" headquartered at Marnie's World/Sabine. The 55th is most famous for its timely arrival in Pretoria subsector during the Battle of Ashes. Its forces reinforced the overstretched 194th and 61st fleets in their battle against invading forces of the Assemblage of 1116, and the combined force crushed the invaders decisively. The ragged, improvised manner in which the 55th made its way to the battlefront, and the expert way it regrouped and turned out for battle, earned it its name.

  • 2. 61st Fleet (Ericson's Rocs): Fleet responsible for defense of RQD 3. Headquartered at Uramid/Antra. Fleet name comes from its early Collapse period commander, Admiral Arabella von Ericson, a Fifth Frontier War veteran and hero. Ericson commanded a starmerc organisation of the same name during the Civil War period, that was inducted into the 61st and became a nucleus of resistance against Virus intrusion from the Vargr Extents. The fleets length of continous service is one of the longest in the Regency, having faced Vargr during the entire Civil War period, and then fighting a mixture of Vargr corsairs and Vampire Fleets during the Dreamtime. And because of the variety of enemies it has had to face, its casualty rate is the highest in the Regency Navy.

  • 3. 125th Fleet (Karmic Yeomanry): Namidshur subsector Fleet. Headquatered at Shinorasus/Namidshur. The 125th backs up the 183rd in the Frontier, and its forces have been called upon many times to assist their neighbors in fighting Vampire incursions. Namidshur was a largely backwater subsector previous to the Civil War and Virus, and its infrastructure and local institutions were less than able in absorbing large numbers of Human and Vargr refugees. The 125th has played a major role in providing shelter and security for both refugees and their adopted homeworlds, creating a strong bond between local civilian communities and the fleets personnel. In return for this strong support, 125th units are often fanatical in their defense of local worlds against pirates and Vampire Ships.

  • 4. 183rd Fleet (Gatekeepers): Fleet responsible for defense of RQD 4. Headquartered at Usani/Usani. No other fleet has seen as much action or combat than the 183rd. With a wide area of responsibility facing the main body of the former Imperium and much of the Vargr Extents, the fleet is subjected to frequent Vampire incursions. At the peak of the Quarantine War, fleet units were averaging two or three battles a week against against ships ranging from errant small craft to infected former Imperial Dreadnoughts. Now battles may occur once or twice a year for most line units, but the fleet remains a cherry posting for ambitious and aggressive naval personnel. Demand for Frontier duty is high enough normally, but the 183rd's G-4 office only has enough billets for about 1 out of every 10 applications it receives, and its selectivity makes the fleet one of the most skilled and elite in the Regency.

  • 5. 194th Fleet (Iron Guard): Pretoria subsector fleet. The 194th is less of a battle unit than an internal peacekeeper. Pretoria has a long history of political friction, most famously the Rachelean Revolts. Previous to the Civil War, fleet units were in control of the subsector capitol itself in the Revolts wake, and were instrumental in calming and reconciling the Vilani majority of the subsector with Solomani or Mixed immigrants. This experience was highly useful in the face of large Vargr refugee flows that flooded the subsector in the period of 1136-1148. While the Vargr have proven more difficult to deal with than the Vilani, the 194th's large number of Civil Affairs units and long experience in low intensity policing have kept open warfare from breaking out between struggling factions and Pack Dens.

  • 6. 315th Fleet (First to Fight): Lamas subsector fleet. Headquartered at Lamas/Lamas. Previously known as the 1st Fleet during the Fifth Frontier War, before postwar reorganisation cost it its designation, though it lives on in the fleets nickname. Though in theory the 315th defends the small sliver of Lamas that is included in the Safe, in practice its units are frequently rotated out to the Frontier for exercises or missions in support of the 61st. Occasionally some of its units have been assigned to the 183rd, and many of its squadrons have Wildside combat experience. It has an unhealthy hatred of Vargr criminal and corsair elements, and its units have been unnecessarily harsh in their prosecution of these groups.

    Haggard Station: Forward RISS scout base found on Haggard/Antra (Deneb 2409). The scout base was one of the few in the Third Imperium to be constructed completely underground, as it was originally an underground containment facility used by the Exploratory Office for samples it had found during its wanderings. When the Collapse hit, the base was abandoned by the Regency, and its personnel were evacuated safeside. After the Rape of Trin, however, an RQS survey team discovered that the base was virtually intact, despite several attempted Vampire intrusions. With the Regency reexpanding its surveillance net back into trailing Deneb, intelligence gathering and liason with local free traders were seen as very important, and the base was reoccupied in 1141.

    Haggard Station is less a military outpost than a trade and contact station, though a full battalion of marines defend it full time. Most people Passing through the Frontier use the world as a transit point, and a number of free traders come here to trade useful salvage or information with the scouts for needed manufactured goods or maintenance. Scouts and Quarantine personnel use its secure containment facilities to examine either salvage reclaimed in the wilds, or to test captured or recovered technology for Virus infection. It is fitted with medical clinics and schools that attract free trader patronage, and many trader collectives take advantage of the incentives offered by base security.

    Ingram Services: Regency's largest private security firm. Ingram is a wholly owned subsidiary of JAX/TCP, the Regency branch of Thanber Consolidated Properties. Ingram provides security guards both living and cybernetic, passive and active security systems, and security consultation for a number of public, commercial and private clients across the Regency. The company was once a wholly owned branch of Tukera Lines Vemene intelligence agency, but was spun off to TCP in the 1120s. The company once included many of Tukera's armed patrol and military ships, but these were requistioned by the Regency in 1132. In the last fifty years its services have expanded to include bodyguards, escort and courier services, and even runs private prisons for subsector and planetary governments.

    Passing: Colloquial term for people who travel regularly through the Quarantine between the Safe and the Wilds. As difficult as it may sound to inhabitants of the Safe, it is only illegal to make an unregulated or uninspected crossing of the Frontier from the Wilds. No ship or person may cross into the Regency Safe without subjecting themselves to inspection by the Quarantine Service.

    But there is no law to prevent commercial or diplomatic contact across the Frontier. A multitude of technical and economic reasons exist to prevent either from developing on a large scale, but it does infrequently occur, especially with Free Trader Collectives friendly to the Regency. In the early years of the Quarantine people who actually took their chances outside of the Safe were considered to be suicidal, but nowadays when it happens it garners more curiosity than disgust. RQS and military regulations prevent personnel and ships from indulging in this trade, and Free Traders are guaranteed a monopoly on what commerce does exist. Most of this is a kind of beads and trinkets trade, or exists mostly at the official level with Traders passing along valuable salvage in exchange for ship maintenance and high value manufactured goods. Even more significant is the passage of persons, mostly children of Free Traders and even a few local warlords dispatched to the Safe for education and rearing, many of whom return to the Wilds and often agitate for the opening of the Frontier as adults.

    Pretorian Way: J-1 route linking 16 worlds from Lewis/Aramis to Gyrfal/Lamas. The Way was of marginal importance in the antebellum period, as few of its worlds were that important. Since the Collapse the rebirth of Pretoria, the flowering of Urnas, and the growth of the Quarantine have made it a high capacity route. Many of its worlds possess substantial Vargr populations, and several are fait accompli. Conflicts between Vargr Pack factions, and tensions between human and Vargr communities tend to drag down local commerce at times. (Pete's Note: This was omitted from the earlier Astrography Data.)

    Rachelean Revolts: The bloody race riots that tore apart Pretoria/Pretoria and several neighboring worlds during the early 1000s. The rioters were mostly Vilani, rebelling against the Pro-Solomani practices of the sector duke, whose family had long repressed them and outlawed Vilani culture and language. These riots culminated in the creation of the Rachele Society, and the destruction of the scout base, and subsequent killing of 26,000 civilians, on nearby Saki (Deneb 0306)

    Pretoria, along with many other worlds in Deneb, was heavily settled by Vilani in the first century of the Third Imperium. Later colonisation waves of Solomani and mixed blood humans eventually assimilated into these communities, and the racial distinction faded away on most worlds. But on Pretoria the Vilani were able to preserve their cultural heritage almost intact, as their urban communities were tightly organised around small neighborhood sized collectives. This led to some tension with immigrating Solomani, but in nearly every case these were assimilated into Pretorian culture without much trouble.

    But in the wake of Arbellatra Alkhalikoii's ascension, a number of troublesome Solomani nobles were relocated or exiled by the new Empress to the far frontiers of the empire for a variety of reasons. And to Pretoria she assigned a former Daibei sector noble family, of pureblooded Solomani descent, known as the Carles-Davies. It was to have disastrous consequences. The Carles-Davies were sympathetic to the Solomani movement, and their forced relocation to Pretoria had the effect of hardening their fervor. In their new position as Duke of Pretoria, they cracked down hard on "Vilani intransigence." The Vilani language was banned in favor or Anglic, Vilani merchants and businesses were subject to harassment and onerous laws and regulations, and the authority of the neighborhood councils were curtailed in favor of a bureaucratic government that favored the Duke or Duchess. The advent of the Psionic Suppressions were used as an excuse to practically ban all forms of Vilani cultural and political expression, and Pretoria became a police state patrolled by the Carles-Davies huscarles' and hated Uniformity Police.

    Because of this pressure, traditional education and authority had to go underground. Educators formed secret shadow academies where students were taught the Vilani language and culture, in small dormitories and cloistered classrooms. Attempts to ferret out these "school-rings" with random searches and expedient mass arrests further radicalised the population, and many school-rings became training grounds for terrorists and resistance cells. One ring produced Zidi Rachele, an extreme Vilani supremacist who called for the extermination of non-Vilani races in favor of a racially pure "Fourth Imperium." Despite the obvious insanity of his message, the fact that many local Pretorians sided with his and his terrorist society was an indication of how desperate the population had become.

    The revolt coincided with the end of the Solomani Rim War, and in its wake an Imperial intervention seized Pretoria, and the Carles-Davies were liquidated by the newly appointed Sector Duke. Pretoria was subject to a hundred and sixty years of military occupation, which was only ended by the Representational Reforms.

    Syr Darya Crisis of 1156: Viral invasion of Syr Darya/Antra in 1156. A very large fleet of mixed Imperial and Vargr military ships, controlled by a pair of Alliance Builder strain Viruses, penetrated the Regency frontier shortly after Holiday, and seized Syr Darya in a lightning attack. The fleet grounded a massive 100,000 ton bulk carrier they had somehow managed to secure, and began to dismantle it and the large base facilities it was carrying, burying the pieces in a large underground warren near the downport. The first Regency counterattack was beaten back with heavy losses, and it took a full planetary invasion, complete with large ground force contingents, before the Vampires were defeated and the world was reclaimed. The attack weakened the Frontier border enough to permit another Vampire Hive to invade Antra, in what is now known as the War of the Antra Pocket.

    United Followers of Augurgh: Former Vargr interstellar state located in the lower trailing-rimward corner of Tuglikki sector. Augurgh was a very charismatic Vargr of vision, who convinced millions of Vargr of the merits of his vision for a technological paradise. Unfortunately his state proved just as susceptible to the Oekhsos tirades of the antebellum period, and a number of associated corsair bands invaded parts of Deneb sector in 1116. Augurgh was not as Anti-Imperial as his neighbors, but had to play the game or face attack from other "spacewolves." Augurgh died a premature death under suspicious circumstances in 1138, and his followers were snuffed out by Virus in 1143.

    War, The Antra Pocket: "Insurgency" war fought over several worlds of RQD 3 between the Regency and a large coalition of Puppeteer viruses in the period of 1160-1165. Three Puppeteer fleets took over the world of Tuedhikhuez/Antra (Deneb 1905) in 1159, and began infiltrating the Regency Frontier near Dunant/Antra (Deneb 1806). This was accomplished through the audacious use of Vargr guerillas formerly associated with a God Virus that had been taken over by one of the fleets. The guerillas were supported by well balanced units of warships that took up position at strategic locations in a system. Under the protective screen of orbital firepower, the guerillas seized strategic and easily defended targets, in many cases abandoned or partially abandoned communities in the outbacks of several Frontier worlds.

    Because Regency forces in the Frontier were organised to repel massed fleet units, and not more mobile raiders, the response of its fleets were initially clumsy and hamhanded. The raiders would attack small targets, induce the less mobile Regency forces to counterattack, and then would melt away after inflicting heavy losses. The viral strategy was rather simple: to wear down the Frontier defenses through attrition until its forces could effect a full breakthrough. A break in the fighting in 1162 gave Regency forces the time to reorganise the local 61st Fleet into smaller task forces, and shift from a reactive defense posture to actively seeking out the main Virus Hive and its base. Defense squadrons contained further attacks, and dedicated Pathfinder units tracked the retreating Virus fleets into the Wilds. Finally in 1165 the 61st, reinforced by the 315th and 55th Fleets, cornered and destroyed the main hive at Tuedhikhuez. The patient tactics of the Antra viruses signalled a shift in Viral organisation and sophistication, and reinforced the reorganisation of Regency naval doctrine.

    Wilderness Ranger Corps: The conservation and wilderness policing arm of the Ministry of the Interior. They were formerly a part of the Imperial Ministry of Conservation, and were merged with the Ministry of Colonisation to help form the new agency. The WRC is the main policing service encountered in Regency reserves, colonial worlds, and wilderness preserves. The Rangers are the primary police force, outside of the major communities, on Marastan/Glisten for example. Rangers are also entrusted with the protection, preservation and operation of the Regency's various Ancient sites since 1133. Since the Abandonment, most worlds in the coreward Frontier are policed by selected units of Rangers in cooperation with local RQS cadres. In many cases Rangers patrol abandoned communities, preventing takeovers by Vargr or Viral squatters.

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