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Kennebec

by Pete Grey

Starport: Class D
Diameter: 9316 miles
Atmosphere: Normal, Tainted with Sulfur Compounds
Surface Water: 81%
Climate: Cool
Population: 6,713,000
Government: Technocracy
Law Level: 5
Tech Level: 9

Kennebec was the target of an attack during the Ancient's Final War. A weapon of unknown design devastated the northern hemisphere, buckling the crust and venting a large amount of poisonous gases from the mantle. 300,000 years later, a significant amount of outgassing continues, shrouding the world in a yellow-brown haze that requires a heavy duty filter mask and sometimes a full protective garment against irritants. The attack created conditions for a series of ice ages that have only abated in the last 30,000 years, and significant amounts of land are still rebounding from load created by glaciation.

The world has a very wet climate, and massive downpours can flood low lying areas. Most structures are built on stilts or other man-made elevations, as much of the local terrain is very susceptible to landslides. The land is covered in thick forests and extensive swamplands that limit overland travel. Despite being settled for nearly 230 years, large sections of the world remain unexplored except by orbital imaging.

Kennebec's main industries are all connected with the local oceans. The seafloor is a rich source for metals, and is harvested by submersible mining platforms that spend months at sea dredging up the nodules. An important second industry is the harvest of certain varieties of edible local sealife, which are raised in mobile seafarms for eventual culling and export to markets on Starn and Ashasi. Most of these industries are rather labor intensive, as unemployment is anathema to the local culture; but they all require long stays at sea or at least away from the main landed settlements. The local culture then is intentionally divided into a working "class" that toil in the world's main revenue industries, and a domestic "class" that takes care of the world's children, and manages the ancillary bureaucratic and support jobs that keep the mining and aquafarming fleets in good running order.

The local Ancient site is the ruined remains of what appears to be a massive dome structure, located deep in the outback. Aside from the architecture, there are few spectacular artifacts to have been found, but there are a few mysteries. No support structure seems to have held up the dome or its attendant structures, but there is no evidence that it used CG lifters of any kind. Even more interesting is that evidence exists that it actually flew, telling from local impact evidence. The purpose and internal layout of this facility are a mystery.


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