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The citizens of this sublime porte shall be bound by a shared duty to the advancement of their common interest, defended by the republican order vested in their sovereignty through the government, unified by the common goals of survival and prosperity, secured in their liberty as the rightful inheritors of the mantle of the stars, and advanced under the banner of progress toward a humanity secure in peace and justice.

- Craterus, the Founder of the Ecumene's Democracy


The Sublime Ecumene is a the name given to the era of Triffid civilization which followed the start of the spacefaring era.

The Ecumene is a vast collection of species linked by a computer interface, which has been compared to a single organism with individuals performing the functions of cells. However, individuals do maintain distinct personalities to a degree, especially when traveling outside the territory of the Ecumene. However, this is not the only way in which the triffids do not comprise a typical civilization. The solar system in which they originated is a “vagabond system” not tied bound in orbit of a single galaxy, but rather in transit between galaxies. For this reason, traditional interstellar colonization is mooted because of the vast distances between stars. The Ecumene is therefore centered around the use of wormholes to travel between different points in time, space, and the multiverse.

The Ecumene have effective control of transportation across five spatial dimensions plus time, and yet do not possess typical interstellar warp technology, and are not particularly inclined to develop it. Citizens typically only leave on private ventures, as there is no centralized foreign policy apparatus to interact with the wider Gigaquadrant. All contact with the First Gigaquadrant is limited to their way-station at Primus Portus, which is located in the Phradox Galaxy. The rest of their colonies are too remote in space and time to be easily located in relation to each other, and so they enjoy more-or-less perfect isolation from other civilizations.

History Edit

Triffid civilization supposedly began when the elder spirits, acolytes of the primordial god Illium, buried their dead on a barren world called Albion. These essential corpses spawned life on Albion, from which the triffids themselves evolved. Once they became civilized, the elder spirits returned to Albion and gave advanced technology to the triffids in exchange for worship and sacrifices. This led to a population explosion, which underwrote the colonization of the solar system over the next century. During the mythic period, triffid civilization was ruled by their gods, who bestowed further gifts of Essence upon their subjects. However, according to the traditional narrative, the triffids were not yet worthy of possessing such powers, and many among them sought to displace their erstwhile masters. This led to a series of disastrous wars that saw the triffids undergo a great diaspora from Albion to their new homeworld, Publicanus. Thereafter, they were planet-bound once more and relegated to a simple tribal existence.

It is at this point that the mythic period ends and a more realistic historical narrative begins. The advanced artifacts left on Publicanus by an ancient civilization meant that the triffids became spacefaring again only a few centuries later. This was followed by a long period of colonization which saw the various planets in the Arakis system colonized by the emerging nation-states of triffid civilization. These nations gradually coalesced into much larger entities that vied for dominance both on Publicanus and in the wider solar system. The end result of this gradual escalation was the "Great Astromachy", which saw the most powerful of the triffid states, the Salvian Federation, emerge from a destructive civil war to conquer the entire solar system from its rivals. This was accomplished through the rule of the last god-king of the Ecumene, Atamolos. Atamolos was among the most powerful of the elder spirits, and the only one who had remained with the triffids after the primordial wars as their guide. He supposedly had two sons to which he left the whole of triffid civilization. Atamolos then underwent apotheosis and for several centuries the Ecumene was ruled by a diarchy of the two triffid royal houses, the Honorian and Arcadian dynasties.

After a long reign which eventually led to repeated abuses of power, the diarchy was overthrown and the modern Ecumene was established. The new democratic government of the triffids oversaw the colonization of their solar system, the development of megascale engineering, and eventually, the discovery and utilization of hyperspace wormholes to travel between vast distances in space and time. Once this had been mastered, first-contact became inevitable. A civilization called the Stellar Cordiality made first contact with the Ecumene, intending to colonize one of their outposts in the Phradox Galaxy, Primus Portus. This led to decades of intermittent warfare in what became know as the War of the Polemarchs. Once the Cordiality was finally destroyed in an open battle, they fled from the Ecumene, and their current whereabouts are unknown. This periodic warfare saw the strengthening of the Ecumene’s military and institutions before they finally became the dominant civilization within their sphere of influence. This saw a long series of wars with the spartiates, drakes, and other species, which eventually culminated in their subjugation within the Ecumene.

The Ecumene has only recently emerged into the sphere of Gigaquadrantic politics, and are skeptical and cautious of most foreigners to this day as a holdover from the War of the Polemarchs.

Society Edit

Birth Order and Citizenship Edit

Full Citizens Edit

All Ecumene citizens enjoy several sacrosanct rights according to their constitution. These include the right to participate in the assemblies, the right to appeal the decision of any magistrate to a higher magistrate or assembly, the right to legal counsel, the right to own property, the right to live anywhere without losing their citizenship, the right to individual freedom even while under trial or investigation, the right to conduct contracts with other citizens, the right to have a legitimate will and to bequeath or accept inheritances, and the right to be free from individual violence. These rights collectively, are awarded to all citizens.

Before triffid civilization became space faring, there were also class differences between the various wealth categories of triffid society called "Birth Orders". These distinctions are now obsolete due to the effective abolition of wealth-related classes, but they do remain in place as a strict formality. These classes are a matter of mutual parental descent. This means that, in order for one to belong to one of the higher birth orders, both of their parents must be members of that same order. If the parents have two different class statuses, then any children will take the status of the lower-classed parent. The birth orders from highest to lowest are as follows:

  1. The Archons: This is the smallest and most exclusive class. They are descended from the kings of the diarchic period and the men employed by them. Most of the Conscript Fathers, magistrates, and high officers of state belong to this class simply as a matter of prestige. No archon is permitted to leave Publicanus without explicit orders from the Conscript Fathers. However, in public they must be acknowledged by their titles and may temporarily requisition the property of private citizens on behalf of the state if given such instructions. However, these considerable privileges are constrained by a regular administration of oaths to the archon order as a whole. Violation of any of these oaths results in a minimum of expulsion from the order, and sometimes penalties as severe as exile, loss of property, or total banishment.
  2. The Cardinals: This class was primarily formed in order to man and command the navy on the old triffid homeworld. For a time, they enjoyed considerable privileges, and continue to do so to this day. They are descended from the original members of the citizen body before it was widened to include a much greater proportion of the triffid population (it now stands at nearly 100%). They now enjoy many of the same rights as the archons, except that they are not bound by the same stringent travel restrictions. As a result, the bulk of mercantile class of the Ecumene belong to the cardinals. Cardinals may also be elected to any public office, but in practice the tight familial clans that the Conscript Fathers belong to prevent many ambitious cardinals from realistically achieving this.
  3. The Cohorts: This class was originally formed from the nobles of other triffid polities who were given citizenship in exchange for supplying the state with soldiers for the military. They filled out most of the ranks of the military, and are generally the most respectable class of low-born citizens. For a brief period during the War of the Polemarchs, the cohorts overthrew the government of the archons, which had been suspected of collaborating with the invading aliens. After order had been restored by one of the many polemarchs appointed in this period, the cohorts willingly surrendered control of the government back to the archons, for which they were applauded as great statesmen.
  4. The Populares: This is the default status of all triffids at birth, unless both of their parents belong to a higher birth order. This birth order comes with no additional prestige or societal obligations. However, any populare may be promoted to a higher birth order in recognition for public service or sacrifice.
  5. The Exalted: This is comprised of individuals who are not born as Ecumenical citizens, but who are awarded all the rights of citizens as a recognition for extreme valor or public service. They are generally looked down upon as foreigners by the rest of the citizens body, since almost none of them are triffids by birth. However, there is no legal mechanism to discriminate against them in relation to any other citizen, and while they are not eligible to run for public office themselves, their descendants of the third generation and thereafter are eligible for membership in any of the higher birth orders.

Patriots Edit

Patriotic status is a privileged set of rights that is extended in a very limited capacity. It is generally awarded by decree of one of the assemblies to individuals or whole populations as a recognition of loyalty, service to the state, or assistance offered towards maintaining order in the Ecumene as a whole. This status was conceived of during the Spartic War as a reward for the factions of spartiates which did not resist the hegemony of the triffids. By the end of the war, most of the spartiate population had been awarded patriot status, and when the spartiates began to colonize other worlds, these colonies were also granted the same status.

This legal classification is awarded a significant portion of the rights of citizens including: the right to enter into contracts with citizens, the right to keep their status even if they migrate, the right to appeal the decision of an assembly or magistrate, and the right to individual freedom even under legal scrutiny. Patriots are also governed by an entirely unique set of inheritance laws not subject to the decrees of magistrates or assemblies which is distinct from the inheritance law applied to full citizens. For this reason, patriot status is highly sought-after by the lower-class races in the Ecumene. In particular, many ambitious drakes and caleons have made it their goals to cultivate a following to loyal subjects who may be granted patriot status en bloc as a means to further their political or financial ambitions.

Any patriot elected to public office in his own municipality is automatically entitled to full citizenship at the end of their term in office if they move to a municipality that already enjoys citizenship. Such individuals are generally called "Exalted Patriots" as a reference to their status members of an elevated class, but which remain below the status of full citizens.

Confederates and Foreigners Edit

Confederate status is the default status for any individuals or populations who are admitted as subjects of the Ecumene. This status encompasses the vast majority of the Ecumenical population, including almost all of the drakes, caleons, and phagians. While not nearly as prestigious or privileged as the patriots or citizens, the confederates still enjoy special treatment within the Ecumene. All confederates possess the right to conduct contracts, and some among this group are also granted the right to freedom of movement. However, this second right is comparatively uncommon. Crucially, the confederates do not possess the right to appeal the edicts of magistrates, and therefore they are totally subject to the arbitrary exercise of power by any consul, praetor, or lower magistrate to which they may be subject at any given time.

The confederates are also not permitted to serve in the primary armed forces of the Ecumene. They may not serve in the navy or in the special forces. Their admission into the armed forces is predicated on the fact that they will be required to fight in mixed-race units under the command of triffid officers. Those who do serve in the armed forces are generally entitled to patriot status upon discharge, however exceptions to this rule may be made at any time by their commanding officers, from whom they have no formal right of appeal.

However, even the maligned confederates are not so powerless as the foreigners - sometimes derisively called "interlopers". Foreigners have no legal protections under Ecumenical law, and are subject completely to the arbitrary whims of the magistrates. They may be deported or exiled without cause at any time, and their resident status is constantly under review by a commission overseen by the curators. Their status is so precarious in fact that any foreigners within the Ecumene generally seek out the protection and patronage of powerful and influential citizens - usually archons - in order to protect themselves from the arbitrary exercise of power. Uniquely, almost the entire population of the kar'zhal are subject to this level of indignity, in spite of them outnumbering nearly every other race within the Ecumene combined. This is because generally, the kar'zhal are violently resistant to any efforts to integrate them into wider Ecumenical society. As such, the kar'zhal are not awarded the right to travel or conduct contracts.

Species Edit

  • Height: 2.5 meters
  • Government: The Ecumene
  • Homeworld: Publicanus (current), Albion (mythical)
  • Status: Full citizenship

The Triffids are undeniably the dominant race of the Ecumene. They became space faring millennia before any of the other subjects of the Ecumene. As such, they are the only group to be awarded citizenship by birthright, and thus occupy the vast majority of political and military positions within the Ecumenical government. The triffids have undergone numerous societal upheavals including periods of both matriarchy and patriarchy before the modern, gender-neutral societal norms became standard. Triffid culture emphasizes the values of valor, individual liberty, and collective societal responsibility. This manifests as an incoherent and ad hoc foreign policy that is maintained on an equally improvised institutional framework.

Triffid families are typically polygamous. Only the most visible and conservative statesmen and women restrict themselves to a single partner. This results in a correspondingly complex system of inheritance. The chronological order of the unions between parents are typically the determiner of precedence for inheritance (i.e. the longer a couple has had a legal union, the more likely it is that their children by one another will benefit from inheritance of either parent than any subsequent children by other partners). These vast complex webs of marriage generally have strong political implications, and most of the Conscript Fathers are members of a single, overarching, extended family. Triffid society is correspondingly nepotistic, except in matters of military importance. Triffid warriors are famously disciplined and virtuous, at least in theory, and any triffid born with elemental powers has a roughly equal chance at being promoted to a commanding officer.

The vast majority of the triffids inhabit Publicanus, their ancestral home. However, as full citizens, the triffids enjoy comprehensive freedom of movement throughout the Ecumene. However, while traveling outside the Ecumene, triffids are beholden to no laws and cannot be prosecuted for any actions taken abroad. However, informal prosecutions are commonly used as olive branches designed to appease the various non-citizen races and foreigners in their midst; exile from Publicanus is the standard penalty, which necessarily entails total societal marginalization, since almost all political, military, and economic institutions are centered on or around the planet.

  • Height: 4.5 meters
  • Government: Collectivist Spartiate Assembly
  • Homeworld: Phaethon
  • Status: Rights of patriots (some enjoy full citizenship)

The Spartiates were made contact with just as the triffids became spacefaring. The existence of their homeworld, Phaethon, was completely unknown due to it being co-orbital and antipodal to Publicanus. Once expeditions reached the planet, the triffid explorers quickly realized that the natives had evolved a complex iron-age civilization. Contact was made quickly, and the spartiates rapidly became the first new members of the Ecumene. Their proud martial culture expedited their integration into the burgeoning civilization, and their naturally fast reproductive rate made them straightforward candidates for colonization.

Spartiates are typically very social creatures that inhabit large dwellings together with their extended families. A single one of these monumental compounds can often house up to 200 or 300 individuals. They are generally arranged close to one another and reach heights of well over fifty meters. They are built in large groups which can be analogous to cities, except that the dwellings themselves contain household manufacturing. The convenience of triffid nano-fabricators meant that industry and commerce never developed organically in spartiate society, and their local manufacturing is reflective of this.

  • Height: 3 meters
  • Government: various states, not centralized
  • Homeworld: Lutetia
  • Status: Rights of confederates

  • Height: 2 meters
  • Government: Solar League
  • Homeworld: Calos
  • Status: Rights of confederates

  • Height: 2.5 meters
  • Government: made up of four smaller states
  • Homeworld: Pacifica
  • Status: Rights of confederates

  • Height: anywhere from 1 meter to 4 meters
  • Government: no discernible political organization
  • Homeworld: Uncertain, most live in space stations
  • Status: Few or no legal rights

  • Height: 1.5-2 meters
  • Government: First and Last Citadel
  • Homeworld: Ersetu
  • Status: Rights of confederates

Religion Edit

Traditional triffid religion predates their written history, and thus does not have a single, authoritative scripture that is widely accepted. Rather, there are numerous ancient texts, dated to have been written during the mythic period. Each of these texts varies slightly in their accounts of the various myths and traditions, and each is held in trust by a separate priesthood, although each of these priesthoods is nominally subordinate to the Assembly of the Pontiffs.

Most members of the Ecumene subscribe to a system of beliefs based on introspection and self-actualization. This comes from the belief that total enlightenment will result in the return of their last divine king, Atamolos to lead an ascendant Ecumenical conquest of the entire universe. In practice, these beliefs are only held by a very small, radical portion of the population.

Most of the oldest laws of the Ecumene have their basis in religion, as the archaic priesthoods were the only literate group for much of early triffid history. Religious law in the Ecumene is furthermore subdivided into five spheres of subject:

  • Laws of the Person: These laws govern the sanctity of individual independence and safety and combat violent crimes.
  • Laws of Equity: These laws govern the rights of citizens and the means by which an individual might achieve, or lose citizenship. Unlike many advanced societies, citizenship in the Ecumene is a very limited a privileged status.
  • Laws of Agreements: This set of laws pertains to family, inheritance, contract law, and many other two or multi-party private and public transactions.
  • Laws of Patrons: These laws pertain to the various political powers and class statuses of the various groups within the larger whole of Ecumene society.
  • Laws of the Spirit: The fifth and final set of laws are a more obscure and less well-defined corpus. It pertains almost exclusively to the priesthoods themselves and to other religious institutions, rather than applying to society as a whole. These laws dictate a strict code of conduct involving personal selflessness, modesty, humility, and public service.

These differing bodies of laws with widely varying jurisdictions are the result of the worship of several archaic deities. The primordial god of creation is called Illium and is believed to be the source from which all life, the universe, and all the other gods came from. The other gods of the triffid pantheon are generally recognized to be aspects of Illium rather than individuals in their own right, although this view is not universal. The other gods include the patrons of war and peace, order and chaos, life and death, the past and future, etc. These deities are called various names depending on what region oneself is in, but the underlying theme in this pantheon is one of duality. The gods exist in rival pairs, the existence of each dependent upon their counterpart. The one exception to this is Atamolos, the "god-king" of the Ecumene. He is purported to have been a real historical figure (although this is unlikely) who underwent apotheosis at the end of his reign.

Technology Edit

ComputingEdit

The Ecumene is a post-singularity society. This means that the rate of technological development has reached a tipping point wherein self-correcting and self-regulating systems are able to evolve autonomously. This has led to the creation of several such “Singularity Brains” or “singers” which form the basis of Ecumenical communication, education, information, and socialization. These massive computers are able to host the whole collective consciousness and experience of the entire Ecumene, who automatically “upload” data when they enter the “song-space” of an individual singer. The singers themselves take on personalities which are the aggregate of billions of individual experiences. No two of the same experiences or memories may be uploaded to more than one singer, which are in constant and instantaneous communication with one another via hyperspace “bands” in order to compare data and triage duplicate sequences. This incredibly vast array of data enables the singers to solve complex problems beyond the scope of individual biological brains. The singers are the impetus behind most of the societal planning and production that takes place in the long-term. The singers are also the prime engines of the so-called “quantum economy” of the Ecumene.

Some futurists believe that once the singers reach a tipping point, their problem solving capabilities will increase exponentially until they are numerous and powerful enough to create an intelligence that is effectively omniscient — able to predict and measure every causal relationship in the entire universe. However, this has not been observed to have happened, and some believe that the energy input required to operate such a construct would exceed the maximum energy density and degenerate into a black hole.

EngineeringEdit

As a Type II civilization, the Ecumene has complete control over planetary engineering. Through the use of atmospheric seeding and asteroid transport, they are able to terraform lifeless planets into habitable sanctuaries, given the right conditions. Once inhabited, medium-gravity planets become the hosts of between three and twenty anchored space elevators each. These moot the need for atmospheric rocketry, and decrease the costs of transportation between planets by a factor of one-hundred. This ease of transport encourages rapid colonization, which is enabled by the huge automated fleet of engineering and cargo ships. These are able to disassemble huge asteroids in order to reach their rich mineral wealth, and a large enough number could hypothetically disassemble an entire planet.

This exponentially growing pool of resources has enabled the Ecumene to venture into some extremely ambitious engineering projects. The home system of the Ecumene is home to a dozen or so O’Neill Cylinders and Dyson Rings of varying sizes. These huge stations serve as massive population and resource banks; some are completely dedicated to the production of food, which can be used to supply the huge and rapidly growing triffid population. However, these projects are only the beginning of the potential of a Type II civilization. Future theoretical constructs include one or more dyson spheres, stellar engines which would enable stars themselves to become the primary vessels of interstellar travel, and generators designed to harvest theoretically infinite (or near-infinite) energy from black holes.

The vast majority of energy production within the Ecumene is sourced from solar collectors. Since most inhabitable worlds are within a reasonable distance of their home star, solar energy is a cheap and abundantly available resource. However, in lower-luminosity environments such as deep space, distant orbits, and wormhole bridges, fusion of hydrogen and helium isotopes comprises the main energy source. These resources are mined in abundance from asteroids, low-gravity planets, and the atmospheres of gas giants, primarily in the form of water and liquid helium. The excess oxygen from this process is utilized for abundant other purposes including as liquid rocket fuel and as seed material for high-gravity worlds with low atmospheric density.

SpaceflightEdit

Interplanetary travel is accomplished by low-intensity propellant-engines. These drives either exhibit controlled expulsion of accelerated particles or utilize the abundant solar wind of the inner-systems to travel outward. The low level of energy input directly into propulsion is compensated for by devices called tethers which rotate in high orbit and use the orbital energy of the planet to introduce additional momentum to individual spacecraft. These tethers, which vary in size from several kilometers to several hundred kilometers, allow low-cost use of orbital energy for spacecraft travel. Interstellar travel is achieved by use of natural and artificial wormholes. The triffid’s home solar system is very unusual among stars because there is a strong density of naturally-occurring wormholes in high orbit. This enabled the Ecumene to develop technology utilizing exotic forms of matter including particles and waveforms with negative mass. This negative mass is used to stabilize the inherently unstable bridges of naturally occurring wormholes as well as to manufacture wormhole termini which may be used to travel all manner of vast distances not just in space, but also in time.

The irregularities in spacetime were extrapolated across vast distances during the period of cosmic inflation. This means that the vast majority of naturally occurring wormholes occur in empty, intergalactic space and transit to other points in intergalactic space. The intergalactic path of Arakis (the home star of the Ecumene) means that a high density of wormholes are collected in orbit around the star at various points. Wormholes exist in low-orbit of Arakis, as well as at the various Lagrange points in the outer orbits of the system. Transit within solar systems is much more efficient with tethers than with wormholes, but the impassable distances in spacetime between the various vacuities makes tethers worthless and wormholes a necessity. Travel between points in space, time, and on different timelines are well within the Ecumene’s capabilities, and access to the probabilistic multiverse preserves causality.

In addition to spacecraft themselves, the home star of the Ecumene itself, Arakis, is propelled by a massive stellar engine which utilizes the energy of the star itself to power secondary fusion reactions that sustain two jets. The larger of the two, made primarily of hydrogen, displaces the star in the direction of its aim; the smaller of the two, made of helium, is fired into the star to maintain the stellar engine's orbit and keep the star-engine-system continuous.

Chemistry and GeneticsEdit

Mastery of genetics was achieved long ago by triffid civilization, possibly even before they became space faring. Legend holds that wars of conquest were fought by triffid states over the issue of genetic engineering. Eventually, the question was settled by the inevitable victory of the genetically enhanced. This originally led to a very segregated society along genetic lines, but over thousands of years, the dominant selected traits were able to diffuse outwards into the wider population. Furthermore, new nanotechnologies have made genetic therapy and manipulation very cheap and easy, so now, the triffids bear only a superficial resemblance to their biological ancestors.

Individual triffids can consciously regulate their metabolism in order to preserve energy when necessary. Their visual spectrum includes most wavelengths of light between 1 picometer and 22 attometers. This includes most of the infrared, ultraviolet, and low-frequency x-ray windows, giving individual triffids unparalleled sensory ability as well as the ability to see through any material that does not block x-rays. Their other senses are similarly enhanced. Triffids are furthermore biologically immortal; they have stopped the biological aging process and their individual memory backups mean that even if their body is destroyed completely, their experience will be part of the collective awareness of the Ecumene as a whole.

Economy Edit

Like most star-spanning civilizations, the Ecumene has transcended the finite and limited framework of market-based economics. Automation has reached an extent such that individual labor is almost completely unnecessary. All economic functions can be undertaken more efficiently by nano-fabrication technology and artificial intelligence, and thus almost all industries only involve biological agents at the highest levels. Labor has been functionally replaced in its entirety by automation, and thus the traditional economic driver of labor existing in excess of property driving economic direction has been replaced by a mode of economy in which all resources - land, labor, and capital - are functionally infinite. This makes individual participation in the economy strictly voluntary, rather than compulsory.

The distribution of resources for individuals is managed by the singularity brains which captain the planned economy of the Ecumene. These massive computers allocate the quantity and distribution of resource production according to precisely calculated demands according to massive amounts of population data. Individuals within this calculation are referred to as "quanta" and their aggregate is taken into account in the allocation of the massive industrial superstructures, most of which are located in orbit.

Ownership and property rights are also protected privileges for all Ecumenical citizens. However, the rights to private property are generally limited to individual goods produced and purchased by private citizens. Overall modes of production and capital are generally publicly owned, not out of any ideological inclination, but simply because there is no desire or means for private citizens to co-opt or manage these complex undertakings.

Order of the Magi Edit

Powers derived from the use of essence have been a major factor in triffid society for at least a century. Individuals with such powers are often referred to as "magi". It is believed that the lingering impact of the Obvia'Atra's long reign over the Phradox Galaxy may have impacted the fundamental fabric of the area's spacetime. This probably translated to a strong inclination among biological life to develop such powerful proclivities. The first such individual to be documented was a triffid woman named Cardilla, who used her seemingly divine gifts to rise the ranks of Primus Portus' local law enforcement and eventually became the region's governor. However, the sharp backlash against the potential threat of such powerful individuals led to their being banned from entering the Ecumene's core territories. As a result, the magi only exist in the Ecumene's colonies in the Phradox Galaxy and they form a self-governing enclave therein.

Essential abilities on top of the triffids' already enhanced genetics make them a force to be reckoned with. Most magi can, with some training, manifest powerful fields of energy to serve as passive force fields in order to protect oneself from damage from the environment or from the effects of most low-intensity weaponry. Elite magi may have access to much more exclusive abilities such as limited flight, weaponized force fields, or manifesting their latent essential energy into extreme feats of personal strength. Very powerful and well-trained magi may manifest this energy into powerful beams which can be used as frighteningly powerful weapons.

Government Edit

Armed Forces Edit

The Grand Combine Edit

The "Grand Combine" is the commonplace term for the formal citizen military forces of the Ecumene. It consists of a massive fleet of ships which are stationed at various points around Ecumene space and subdivided into various task forces. Each fleet is commanded by an exarch, and each task force is commanded by a prefect. In this case is a much more general office, rather than the well-defined magistracy within the elected government. Prefects are assisted in the control of their task forces by AI, political commissars, and ex-magistrates with military experience. Individual ships are commanded by a commandant, who generally lead a very small crew of a few dozen to a few hundred, depending on the ship, and the vast majority of functions are maintained by shipboard AI.

Mixed Forces Edit

The mixed forces are the auxiliary arm of the Ecumene military. Over the past few centuries, the mixed forces totally supplanted the large citizen army. This has left the bulk of the mixed forces to be composed primarily of non-citizen soldiers led by triffid officers. The mixed forces, unlike the grand combine, are primarily domestic peacekeeping forces that maintain peace in the Ecumene's colonies. The mixed forces are divided into several different tiers, each with its own command structure.

  1. Tier 1: forces mostly comprised of citizens soldiers with supporting specialists from non-citizen populations
  2. Tier 2: forces comprised of non-citizens from a specific populations, commanded by citizen officers
  3. Tier 3: forces comprised of non-citizens from multiple different populations, commanded by citizen officers
  4. Tier 4: forces comprised of non-citizens from multiple different populations, commanded by non-citizen officers from a specific population

Stormtrooper Corps Edit

The stormtrooper corps are the most feared and respected branch of the Ecumene's armed forces. They are comprised of mostly independent contractors and small companies. The tiny size of these units in comparison to other branches of the Ecumenical military is compensated for by the incredible power of these individuals and units. They are all born with essential abilities and elect to enter the armed services instead of the order of the magi, and are consequently an army of one. For this reason, they are never deployed within the Ecumene's colonies, and are exclusively reserved for intense warfare with foreign threats. The stormtroopers are functionally immortal, and thus their numbers only increase with time, gradually adding to the total military might of the Ecumene.

Magistrates Edit

The executive offices of the Ecumene are called "magistrates", which is a general term to describe any elected public office. There are a set number of magistrates elected to serve concurrent terms of two years in groups called "colleges". Magistrates are ranked in sequential order, and only a magistrate of higher rank may overturn the decision of another magistrate. The colleges of ordinary magistrates in order of rank, from lowest to highest are:

  • Prefects: Unspecified number elected per term by the Boule. Act subordinate to higher magistrates in areas which require specialization of skills and labor (i.e. construction, colonization, terraforming, etc.)
  • Administrators: 6 elected per military unit currently in active deployment by the Boule.
  • Solicitors: 200 elected per term by the Boule. Participate in tax collection; financial advisors to Imperators; maintain the public archives, supervise transactions made by the armed forces
  • Curators: 50 elected per term by the Boule. Oversee planetary infrastructure.
  • Praetors: 20 elected per term by the Politburo. Sit as judges in the law courts; issue indictments, hear trials, and announce verdicts. Can call a Conscript or Tribunal assembly.
  • Consuls: 2 elected per term by the Politburo. Have the capacity to command armies; can issue binding edicts to other magistrates; can veto the edicts of their colleague; can call or adjourn a Conscript, Tribunal, or Electoral Assembly; issue laws to the assemblies
  • Arbiters: 2 elected per term by the Politburo; each must have served as imperator previously, but do not exercise direct authority over the imperators. Conduct the census; may issue to or strip individuals of citizenship; can call, but not adjourn a Conscript assembly; may expel individuals from the Conscript Fathers
  • Executor: 1 elected per term by the Conscript Fathers; must have served as imperator previously (generally the oldest available Conscript). Speaks first in every Conscript assembly; can call of adjourn a Conscript assembly.
  • Polemarch: 1 elected for an unspecified term by the Conscript Fathers. Assumes total command of the arms and resources of the state, superseding all other magistrates; must have served as imperator; only for use in emergencies; may not be elected from among sitting magistrates (only former)
  • Tribunes: 10 elected per term by the Boule. A special class of magistrates, separate from all other colleges; sacrosanct while in office; can call and adjourn the Conscript, Tribunal, or Popular assemblies; can issue edicts binding to all citizens, except for other magistrates; can veto any action undertaken by any assembly, court, or magistrate; may not leave the home world while in office.
  • Overseers: 1 elected per planet for an unspecified term by the Conscript Fathers. Oversee all actions from all magistrates lower than jurors and handle the administration of various provinces and cities; oversee the bureaucratic machinery of government; must have served as imperator

Assemblies Edit

Assemblies fill primarily the legislative duties of government. However, unlike other legislative bodies, the Ecumenical assemblies may only take a reactive role in legislation. None of the assemblies can self-regulate or self-adjourn, and thus any action taken thereby must be at the motion of a magistrate. This is usually done by a consul but sometimes also by a praetor, arbiter, or tribune, or polemarch.

  • Assembly of the Conscript Fathers: A body comprised of all sitting magistrates, as well as all former consuls, praetors, curators, and tribunes (as well as some specially-appointed men). Only members of this body are eligible to be elected to the consulship, and thusly also to the arbitrate and the polemarchy. All edicts passed by any other assembly must be ratified by the Conscript Fathers in order to be legally enforced by the magistrates, except in a case where a supermajority of the Boule is invoked, in which case, such motions enter the force of law directly.
  • Assembly of Pontiffs: An assembly comprised of all the highest priests in the Ecumene. This body is largely independent of all other assemblies. It is presided over by it's own members, rather than any magistrates. It's meetings are not a matter of public record, and the assembly may strike down any law construed to violate the religious laws of the Ecumene. In practice, this body has sharply declined in influence as power has shifted to the Conscript Fathers. However, all appointments to pontifices are made from within and are for life. Pontifices may also be held concurrently with any other office. Because of the life terms, self-regulating membership, and non-exclusivity of offices, the head of the pontifical college is occasionally one of the most powerful men in the state, even though he may not hold elected office at any given time.
  • Tribunal Assembly: An assembly gathered to act as a jury in a non-capital case. Capital cases are heard by the Conscript Fathers. May be called and adjourned by praetors, consuls, and polemarchs.
  • Electoral Assembly: An assembly gathered to elect magistrates (except for the polemarch). May be called and adjourned only by consuls and polemarchs, but is occasionally presided over by an overseer in the absence of either.
  • Public Assembly ("The Boule"): This assembly is comprised of the collective consciousness of all citizens in the Ecumene. It may only be assembled by a tribune and it's consent is required in order for any motion to enter the force of law. This includes all motions passed by the Conscript Fathers, pontiffs, as well as any new proposals to the judicial or electoral code by the other assemblies.
    • Politburo: Within the Boule is a standing committee called the politburo comprised of no more than 10% of all citizens selected based on military or political service history. The standing committee elects consuls, praetors, and arbiters, whereas the Boule at-large elects all lesser magistrates.

Court System Edit

The justice system of the Ecumene is divided into three types of courts.

Tribunals are verseen by a praetor or consul, tribunals are only used when the law in question is unclear as to the nature of the alleged crime. In this case, the tribunal assembly is the decisive body. After any such decision, the record of the trial is appended to the public records and is used as a precedent in any future cases in other courts.

Standing Courts are permanent bodies staffed by jurists. Each of them is overseen by a praetor specifically. Each of these courts is tasked with trials surrounding an explicit class of crime. There are twenty praetors, and thus twenty standing courts which address crimes such as abuse of power, obstruction of justice, racketeering, and perjury. There is also a court which specifically tries cases involving foreigners residing within the Ecumene. The Conscript Fathers, led by a consul, act as a court of appeals from all lower courts as well as the jury court in capital cases.

Special Courts are formed only occasionally and temporarily. When extreme circumstances arise, a polemarch or consul may appoint a commission of former praetors and consuls to oversee a temporary tribunal. In these courts, the commissioners act as judge and jury, but their purview must be narrowly defined, and anyone brought to trial under the special courts may appeal to a tribune, who naturally outrank the offices of any irregular commission. Special courts can conduct tribunals over such diverse jurisdictions as the distribution of public property, alleged perpetrators of espionage, religious crimes, election code revisions, and even the actions of previously selected commissioners.

Foreign Relations Edit

There is no centralized bureaucratic apparatus within the Ecumene tasked with the handling of international affairs. This is mostly due to the extremely isolated nature of the triffids' home star, which delayed first contact for thousands of years, by which point, Ecumenical institutions were firmly entrenched. Because of the lack of a mechanism for proactive institutional adaptation, the handling of foreign relations has, at various times, been overseen in an informal capacity by the sitting consuls, the Conscript Fathers as a whole, privately contracted companies, and special commissions. The level of oversight assigned to the matter is generally proportional to its urgency. For example, during the War of the Polemarchs, the rapid turnover in the composition of the magistrates was not conducive to a unified resistance, and thus, the Boule elected a special fifty-individual commission to oversee the aegis of the military and diplomatic institutions.

However, the modern Ecumene has fallen back into lapsing on their proactive foreign policy history. Presently, most foreign relations are conducted by private individuals, generally archons and cardinals, who do not claim to act on behalf of the Ecumene as a whole. However, in the event of a foreign embassy being allowed to enter Ecumenical space, they will generally be received by the Conscript Fathers and have their petitions or appeals heard by the consuls.

Formal Alliance Edit

Blue face "The Ecumene shall remain steadfast in its treatment of the allies."

Non-Aggression Pact Edit

Yellow face "Adherence to these stipulations will lead to a long a faithful peace."

Embargoed or Sanctioned Edit

Orange face "The flagrant abuse of our citizens and those of other nations cannot be ignored."

War Declared Edit

Red face "We shall not relent from a just and pious conclusion to this matter."

  • None as of now

Colonial Reach Edit

Arakis System Edit

Planets

Helios

Helios with the Foundries in the foreground.

  • Orbital Radius: 0.5 AU
  • Mass: 0.56 ME currently (originally 0.7 ME)
  • Type: Barren
  • Atmospheric Composition: N/A
  • Colonized: 3906 PC
  • Population: Negligible

Helios is the inner-most planet of the Arakis system. With a surface temperature exceeding 100oC during the day, it was never a particularly attractive target for colonization. It remained a backwater for a considerable period of time, not being fully utilized by the Ecumene until more than 700 years after its nearest neighbor, Selene. However, unlike the rest of the inner planets, Helios was not colonized in the traditional way. Only a very small number of administrators live in orbit of the planet. Their primary mission is to oversee the megastructures in orbit of Helios called "The Foundries". This massive spherical satellite hosts thousands of different automated facilities, each tasked with the construction of different pieces of equipment made from material mined from the planet's surface.

The objects manufactured include civilian and military spacecraft, probes, and most importantly, panels to be used in the gradual construction of a dyson swarm. The primary goal of this project is to completely hollow out the planet and use it for manufacturing. This is made markedly easier by automation, and the planet's proximity to the inner solar system makes it an attractive mining target. However, in the nearly 2200 years since this began, only about 20% of the planets mass has been converted into manufactured products. When it is finally used up completely in an estimated 3000 years, the primary industrial resource in the solar system will be the solar-proximate asteroids such as Apophis and Sarissa.

Selene
  • Orbital Radius: 0.7 AU
  • Mass: 1.2 ME
  • Type: Greenhouse (terraformed)
  • Atmospheric Composition: Nitrogen, oxygen, argon
  • Colonized: 3188 PC
  • Population: ~2 billion

Selene was originally colonized as the first joint-venture between the triffids and the spartiates. Likewise, it was the first attempt at terraforming of any originally uninhabitable world. This pilot project in biosphere engineering is accordingly ecologically very fragile and is comprised primarily of genetically modified life forms from Publicanus. However, the planet is only about half the mass of Publicanus, and thus the inhabitants who have lived there for the last 2500 years are genetically modified or cybernetic ally adjusted to living in lower-gravity environments. The care needed to maintain the health of the planet provides a consistent draw for colonists from other areas of the Ecumene. This long history of constant colonization has led to a massive population of over 2 billion, most of them citizens and patriots.

This world is rightly considered one of the most important worlds in the entire Ecumene, and for this it has an autonomous government led by an elder council called the Centurionate. Seleni citizens are automatically awarded the rights of patriots in the wider Ecumene and participate in the election of their own autonomous magistrates. However, these magistrates are subject to the edicts of consuls, praetors, and polemarchs when they are present on the planet. They may appeal any such edicts directly to the Conscript Fathers in order to achieve remuneration for any abuses of power by national magistrates.

The highly developed nature of Seleni industry and culture means that the planet is accordingly equipped with considerable infrastructure. There are dozens of space tethers which make the planet a natural transit hub towards the outer solar system. Co-orbital with Selene, there are also numerous megastructures, including at least three heavily-populated O’Neill cylinders and uncountably many maintenance and refueling stations.

Publicanus
  • Orbital Radius: 1.5 AU
  • Mass: 2.5 ME
  • Type: Garden world
  • Atmospheric Composition: Nitrogen, oxygen, carbon dioxide
  • Colonized: 0 PC (supposedly)
  • Population: ~25 billion

Phaethon
  • Orbital Radius: 1.5 AU
  • Mass: 2.5 ME
  • Type: Garden world
  • Atmospheric Composition: Nitrogen, oxygen, hydrogen sulfide
  • Colonized: 3519 PC
  • Population: ~33 billion

Pyroeis
  • Orbital Radius: 3.4 AU
  • Mass: 1.1 ME
  • Type: Garden world (terraformed)
  • Atmospheric Composition: Nitrogen, oxygen, argon, water vapor
  • Colonized: 3822 PC
  • Population: ~1.2 billion

Typhon

Typhon with three of its largest moons in transit. From left to right: Pontus, Foresight, and Pella.

  • Orbital Radius: 5.1 AU
  • Mass: 380.2 ME
  • Type: Gas giant (Jovian)
  • Atmospheric Composition: Hydrogen, helium, methane, water vapor
  • Colonized: 3949 PC
  • Population: ~200,000 living in orbit (many more on major moons, see below)

Thane
  • Orbital Radius: 10.4 AU
  • Mass: 125.8 ME
  • Type: Gas giant (Jovian)
  • Atmospheric Composition: Hydrogen, helium, ammonia
  • Colonized: 4039 PC
  • Population:

Chiros
  • Orbital Radius: 18 AU
  • Mass: 15.7 ME
  • Type: Barren rocky planet
  • Atmospheric Composition: Carbon dioxide, neon (density negligible)
  • Colonized: 4599 PC
  • Population: ~10,000

Arcturus
  • Orbital Radius: 40 AU
  • Mass: 34.4 ME
  • Type: Glacial planet
  • Atmospheric Composition: N/A, no significant atmosphere
  • Colonized: Not yet formally colonized
  • Population: Negligible

Moons

Aerilon
  • Host Body: Publicanus
  • Mass: 0.25 ME
  • Type: Barren world
  • Atmospheric Composition: N/A, no significant atmosphere
  • Colonized: 3004 PC
  • Population: ~50 million

Twin Colossi
  • Host Body: Phaethon
  • Mass:
  • Type:
  • Atmospheric Composition:
  • Colonized:
  • Population:

Pella New

Pella

  • Mass: 0.6 ME
  • Type: Garden world (terraformed)
  • Atmospheric Composition: Nitrogen, oxygen, argon, carbon dioxide
  • Colonized: 4028 PC
  • Population: ~800 million


Pontus

Pontus

  • Mass: 0.3 ME
  • Type: Barren moon
  • Atmospheric Composition: N/A, no significant atmosphere
  • Colonized: 4140 PC
  • Population: ~1 million


Chaldea

Chaldea

  • Mass: 0.2 ME
  • Type: Ice moon
  • Atmospheric Composition: N/A, no significant atmosphere
  • Colonized: 4077 PC
  • Population: ~16 million


Caliber

Caliber

  • Mass: 0.15 ME
  • Type: Ice moon
  • Atmospheric Composition: N/A, no significant atmosphere
  • Colonized: 4212 PC
  • Population: ~10 million


Inheritance

Foresight

  • Mass: 0.12 ME
  • Type: Barren moon
  • Atmospheric Composition: Trace amounts of methane, sulfur, chlorine, and xenon
  • Colonized: N/A, not yet formally colonized
  • Population: N/A


Ringworld Up Close

Beacon Alpha

  • Type: Ringworld
  • Built: 4013 PC
  • Population: ~30 million


Ringworld Array

Lesser Beacons

  • Type: Ringworlds
  • Built: Various, beginning in the 4500s PC
  • Population: ~40-50 million


Naupactus and Pylos

Minor Moons

  • Listed by Mass: Pylos (left), Naupactus (right), Anabasis, Clearcha, Samnium, Endurance, Maleventum, Beneventum, Cypress, Arborea, Charity, Rivermark, many more of negligible mass

Syphax

Syphax

  • Mass:
  • Type:
  • Atmospheric Composition:
  • Colonized:
  • Population:


Sphaleron

Sphaleron

  • Mass:
  • Type:
  • Atmospheric Composition:
  • Colonized:
  • Population:


Attica

Attica

  • Mass:
  • Type:
  • Atmospheric Composition:
  • Colonized:
  • Population:

Minor Moons

Vacuity Pockets Edit


These wormholes transport between locations in the First Gigaquadrant and are all in the present day.

Eudaimonia
Primus Portus
Haven

These wormholes transport between locations in the First Gigaquadrant at different points in time.

Inheritance
  • Location: Gamma Quadrant, Phradox Galaxy
  • Time Period: 50,000 years in the future
Odium
  • Location:
  • Time Period:
Derelict
  • Location:
  • Time Period:
Calos
  • Location: Delta Quadrant, Phradox Galaxy
  • Time Period: 20,000 years ago

These wormholes connect vastly separated distances on parallel timelines, in alternate realities, and inside pocket universes.

Praetoria
  • Location: Arakis System, intergalactic space between the Milky Way Galaxy and Phradox Galaxy
  • Time Period: Present day
  • Divergence: Alternate timeline where triffids went extinct but spartiates evolved a spacefaring civilization
Five Directorates
  • Location: Orion Arm, Milky Way Galaxy
  • Time Period: 3,000 years ago
  • Divergence: Five separate timelines all interconnected, ruled over by a singular government
Lutetia
  • Location:
  • Time Period:
  • Divergence:
Pavellum
  • Location:
  • Time Period:
  • Divergence:
Phobetor
  • Location:
  • Time Period:
  • Divergence:
Charybdis
  • Location:
  • Time Period:
  • Divergence:
Olympion
  • Location:
  • Time Period:
  • Divergence:
Furia
  • Location:
  • Time Period:
  • Divergence:


Ecumene technology allows confined use of exotic matter to produce and widen wormholes. They may also be used to move and strengthen the bridges of natural wormholes. This exotic matter permits Ecumene technology to travel and communicate through five dimensions of space and one dimension of time. This allows for eight different degrees of freedom of travel as opposed to the single degree permitted by standard rockets and two degrees by Einstein-Rosen bridges.

Notes Edit

Quotes Edit

Gallery Edit

Trivia Edit

  • The Ecumene is part of an extensive retcon of my old fiction, and will likely incorporate much of the old ideas into its lore.
  • Their government is based heavily on the Roman Republic as well as other classical states like Sparta, Athens, and Achaemenid Persia. Much of the associated nomenclature is derived from classical Greek and Latin.
  • I hope that this will be a more interesting and less derivative take on the "space empire" trope on the site (and in science fiction in general).
My name is Ozymandias, king of kings. Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair.
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