First Consolidation War, The

Consolidation War
Image from Steve Bowers
The routes of the main warfleets in the First Consolidation War

Corona Becomes the Capital of the Taurus Nexus

The Taurus Nexus was established on the remains of an abandoned wormhole network that was established by a mysterious group of ahuman AIs in the early interstellar period. Almost nothing is known about this group; they appear to have achieved a state of transaturation ascension and vanished, like later groups such as the De Sitter Project at NGC 6755.

The first capital of the Taurus Nexus, at Xi Geminorum, was superseded by Corona in 2350 AT, when a new, long range wormhole was constructed between that world and the extensive abandoned ahuman network more than eighty light years away. Corona, already a thriving and diverse world became the main gateway to the Taurus Empire. As the new empires of Metasoft and the Solar Dominion began to emerge, they used Corona as a point of contact with the thriving humanocentric Taurus worlds. Corona also had good links to the rest of the Inner Sphere.

From 2350 to 3260 the Taurus Nexus was one of the finest examples of humanocentric interstellar civilisation ever to emerge. The diverse Coronese culture and influence percolated into the Nexus in many forms; the ritualistic sacrifices of the Alto Stisboi religion for instance were in stark contrast with the Academic culture of the great universities. And hedonistic, austere, libertarian and authoritarian societies arose on the many worlds strung out from Pisces to Gemini, in Aries and among the Hyades. Cyborgs and Vecs and many kinds of provolves were also drawn to the Taurus worlds, some seeking to escape the emerging rule of the archai. In many ways the Taurus Nexus was becoming what the First Federation failed to achieve; an interstellar empire where individuals and information could pass from star to star with relative ease. Very few transapients above the second toposophic level were to be found in the Taurus systems, but the quality of life on many worlds was exceptionally high.

New Empires Emerge

In Gemini and along the counterspinwards edge of the Nexus the su-cyborg empire of the Conver Ambi was emerging; this was a much more monolithic civilisation, expansive and militaristic. Several worlds in the Nexus such as the old capital Xi Geminorum had large colonies of Conver devotees; by 2900 several of these worlds had become pure Conver worlds.

Towards the Inner Sphere, several worlds including the unimaginatively named 'New Earth' at 104 Tauri considered themselves to be the last remnants of the old Federation; calling themselves the Terran Federation they were closely aligned with, but never formally joined the Taurus Nexus itself. Like many of the other emerging empires, the Terran Federation was an archaiocracy, ruled by a being of the third toposophic ('Yave', later to ascend two more levels to become one of the middle ranking archailects). This archai-led culture began to affect the geometric heartland of the Taurus worlds, subtly changing the societies of the Hyades volume.

Another, even more pervasive archai-led empire was infiltrating the very capital of the nexus itself. The Non-Coercive Zone with its libertarian philosophy was very attractive to the naturally individualistic Coronese. Instead of an archailect with apparently human-like attributes, the NoCoZo was guided by a vast coordinated network of high-toposophic market and corporation archai, which together formed a distributed archailect of an indeterminate nature. By 3260 the majority of the population of Corona desired to join the NoCoZo, preferably taking the rest of the Nexus with them. But this prospect did not appeal to the Hyades worlds, influenced by the Terran Federation and the Yave cultists; nor to the Conver Ambi influenced worlds in Gemini. Many worlds in these volumes declared independence from the Taurus Nexus, leading to conflict and chaos on many. Loyalist Nexans fought fiercely to remain aligned with Corona on many worlds, and so did certain pro-Coronese Alto Stisboi sects, some of which adopted the practice of sacrificing their enemies at any opportunity. But the capital was too distant; and the Hyades soon was dominated by the rebels.

At this time the Solar Dominion annexed the world of Xil and the Nexus-owned continent of Locos on Shamash, ostensibly to protect the population from social anarchy. The centralist Dominion was diametrically opposed to the NoCoZo, at least on the level apparent to modosophont citizens. In the Aries Volume Metasoft also began to take Taurus worlds under their protection; some fought back against the vecs, but were invariably defeated.

The Warfleets

In 3320 the Coronese revealed their first interstellar warfleet, built in secret among the Iotan asteroid belt. For a hundred years this fleet and others like it, arrowed towards the worlds of the Hyades to reclaim the lost worlds of their former empire. Meanwhile a number of lesser fleets were launched in the opposite direction towards Corona by the rebels to force the old capital world to accept the new Nexus paradigm (which was now largely defined by Terran Federation sympathisers). The two opposing forces passed each other by in interstellar space, as they were separated by more than ten light years even at closest approach. The various fleets went on instead to wreak havoc on their target worlds. In the whole conflict very few actions were fought in interstellar space; the relative speeds were too great for the vessels of that time to make any significant contact.

The Corona System had a very efficient industrial base, and numerous defences; most of the rebel warships sent to that system were destroyed; but those few that got through caused great destruction on the homeworld. In the opposite direction, many of the less-developed worlds of the Hyades did not put up much resistance to the Coronese fleets, but over time the fleets were depleted by attrition and the great distance traveled, cut off from any resupply.

Smaller Alto Stisboi fleets were launched in the Taurus heartlands, but were generally unsuccessful in their attempts to bring the rebel worlds back into the fold; except in the twin systems of Theta-1 and Theta-2 Tauri, which became the centre of the pro-Coronese faction in the Hyades.

Relentlessly, Conver Ambi fleets were encroaching from the counterspinwards direction, even taking over some worlds newly won by the Terran Federation and Metasoft; the Convers were fierce, but would later falter in the Second Consolidation war against the archai-led empires. However the rescue of the Conver world of Crescent by Terran forces led to a strong pro-TF contingent in the Conver Ambi, and hostilities between these empires ceased.

Finally, in 3429, the last remaining Coronese fleet was destroyed, still thirty light years from the Theta Tauri stars which they had been heading for in a vain attempt to link up with the Altos. By 3435 Corona abandoned any attempt to recover the Nexus worlds, and formally joined the NoCoZo. A series of treaties were drawn up dividing the fringes of the Nexus up between the Conver Ambi, Metasoft, the Solar Dominion and the Non-Coercives, with the Hyades largely remaining in Terran Federation hands.

 
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Development Notes
Text by Steve Bowers

Initially published on 07 October 2008.