Altronis

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Altronis is an Alliance Member World and a major economic center producing consumer goods for much of Joint Space. It is a round planet orbiting a middle-class star, approximately 70,000 light-years from the Progenitors' home-world.

History

During the Mage Wars, Altronis was controlled by the Marcon Empire which it served primarily as a slave-world, breeding warriors to fight all over the Known Worlds. It was liberated in 901 B.G.A. by the dragon sorceress Lelerough. So thorough was Lelerough's damage of the Marconian infrastructure that they did not attempt to reclaim this world, and it remained free.

At the start of the Golden Age, Altronis formally joined the Alliance; but due to its remoteness, did little more than agree to a non-aggression pact. They did not even have representation in Arindell. During the Ninety-nine-years war, Altronis severed all contact with the Alliance, but remained nominally a member.

Like most of the Multi-Verse, Altronis was afflicted by the Necromanic Wars, and liberated by Lal Soratami. Once liberated, Altronis resumed their isolationist stance, and local histories recorded the war, with its invasions of the undead, as the work of native tyrants.

No further contact at all occurred until the mid Fourth Age, when Marcus Ransom, son of then-Pendragon Andrei Ransom, found Altronis under the control of a brutal corpocracy. He also found himself stranded, and when the Alliance and Foundation refused to intercede, he set about a rebellion and eventually brought about massive reforms.

As part of these reforms, the Foundation built a large GATE hub on Altronis so that goods manufactured there were easily shipped off-world. This, coupled with standard Foundation economic policies, helped shape a rich and prosperous world.

Prosperity lasted until the Sixth Age, when the solar system was subject to blockade, and later overrun, by the Kami. Nearly all the population were evacuated, while those that stayed behind fought against the occupation for nearly eighty years. Eventually they were subjugated; but the damage to Altronis' infrastructure was so severe that the Kamians felt it was not worth repairing. They left a garrison behind, and forced the few remaining inhabitants to construct defensive systems: massive ray-guns, electrified shields, and more. Other than that, the survivors were left relatively free. Most traveled as far from the garrison as they could, and set about rebuilding their civilization.

Because the Kamian Succession Wars did not end for another five centuries, the refugees never returned. The Kamians were driven easily from the planet at the end of the war, and some refugees from other areas were eventually resettled there. Altronis no longer had a culture of its own, and was just another Alliance world, among many worlds slowly putting themselves back together. It remained an Alliance world until the Long Night.

Cultures

During Lelerough's rampage, the infrastructure of Altronis was destroyed, and its survivors relegated to an Age of Darkness. By the time the Alliance approached them, the native Altronics occupied a Feudal System or similar (the more cosmopolitan their people, the more sophisticated their society); and the Ninety-nine-years war preceded an Industrial Revolution. Legends persisted of 'other worlds' and Mystical Creatures, but lacked any local foundation until the Fifth Age. Because any native child indisputably talented in Magic, was confiscated, brainwashed, and raised Marcon, this talent was almost negligible after the Empire lost the world, and it remained relatively unimportant until the Emigration (see below).

Three Earths

Possibly in bad memory of having been brought as slaves by the Marcons, the Altronics maintained a legend of a long-lost, utopian homeland; its character and location varying among ethnicities of people (themselves roughly equal to the various planets from which they were taken), who day-dreamed either of return, or of a past Antiquity. In the last days of the Altronis Corpocracy, this belief was nicknamed 'First Earth' by the lower literati, and Altronis itself nicknamed 'Second Earth'. The future for which some of these literati hoped (in which poverty, illiteracy, sickness, famine, crime, and war would be eradicated, and wealth, learning, health, prosperity, accord, and peace become the norm) supplied the 'Third'; but this name adhered at last to the worlds later colonized (see below).

Religion

Some Altronics worshipped the One King and Last Dynasty; others worshipped Lelerough, under various pseudonyms; some worshipped the Broodmother, and practiced serpentine mythology (not Dragon Worship exactly, but similar); others worshipped their ancestors; some worshipped the Sun, Moon, and other nearby celestial bodies; and some practiced variations of Cardinalism. A few of their religions were almost as misogynist as the extinct Marcons'; but most religion was discredited and debased in the corpocratic days, except where it supported racism or anti-intellectualism. Their use by the Marcons as soldiers, established a martial mythology. Memories of the Mythical Age were re-interpreted as stories of early days after the planet was settled.

Legends

Magic, gods, and Mystical Creatures were a constant presence in old stories, but virtually absent in fact, and this became one of the Altronics' most persistent ontological questions. A variety of legends arose to explain this paradox, which may be divided into three categories.

One school of thought argued that magic etc. had once been widespread, but diminished as human civilization grew. In many legends, the Mystical Creatures found the growth of civilization untenable, and 'left' Altronis, either literally or metaphorically, and the magic itself left with them. Academics in the Alliance, upon encountering this myth, believed it was a corrupt reconstruction of Altronis' own isolationist policy; perhaps combined with the sudden appearance and disappearance of Lelerough. Such reconstruction was fairly common among isolated worlds, and served as a plausible explanation.

Others on Altronis held that their legends were a form of historical fiction, or exaggerated exploits of ordinary people, and the magic and miracles in the stories were only plot-devices to indicate matters too complicated to explain.

The third school of thought insisted that legends and myths of every sort were pure fantasy and existed to distract people from the real conditions of life; this was the preferred explanation in The Corporate Era, and served as the official excuse for the suppression of the arts, classics, and sciences in schools.

Corp. Days

As said above, the corpocracy was a dystopia, and nearly caused a Mass Extinction of life on Altronis.

Emigration

When the corporations were destroyed, about half the Altronic population were moved by GATE to another world, without their knowledge. Because the GATE stayed open whenever seen by any native, the natives believed they had simply recolonized a portion of their old world, earlier abandoned by the corporations. Neither Foundation nor Alliance disturbed this illusion; indeed, most preferred a free social intercourse between Altronis and 'Third Earth' (the nickname given by Altronics to their new society).

Evacuation

It was only with the evacuation in the Sixth Age, under pressure by the Kami, that Altronics took part in the affairs of the larger Alliance. Likewise, it was only then that the Altronics did not believe themselves unique, or unusual, in the cosmos. Early generations were reportedly shocked by the discovery.