2700-2709

Emperor Vaughn I, the Saxon monarch, died leaving his vast commonwealth to his daughter, Joel. As firm a ruler as her father, her reign was notable inasmuch as she taught her oldest daughter to be more so.

Late in the opening decade, The Kochevnik declared war on the Akatsu in response to their marauders launching a devastating and successful attack on the Zuìzhōng base, Port Lüshun orbiting Liao in the Ainu system. Supported by their Kochevnik allies the base was able to hold out for over ten months but eventually fell to the Akatsu mechanised space division which created a beachhead on Liao and attacked the orbital base from the surface as well as from space. Liao was lost, as the Zuìzhōng army fell.

 

2710-2719

Still intent on revenge, the Kochevnik second fleet, following a long and tortuous route through The Extent hyperspace gate network to avoid Akatsu forces, attacked the Akatsu from the rear but suffered a stunning defeat, the entire fleet lost with no survivors.

In Kochevnik space, N'Chari citizens were massacred in a town on the outskirts of Pavelsk on the planet Volhyniaskaya in the Rurik system and before long the entire capital was ablaze with racial hatred and violence. The violence spread to other worlds in Kochevnik space with citizens across known space shocked at the news of the massacres and subsequent government inaction. The Kochevnik formally protested the use of Skean marines that dropped on several border planets, heavily suppressing the violence as well as to the Skean offer of relocating those N'Chari who wish to leave to Skean space.

In 2713, the Skean launched the biggest battleship ever seen, the Colossus class super-dreadnought IMS Ayra, mounting ten one-ton and sixteen five-hundred-kilogram railguns as well as a completely automated laser defence system. Two years later, the Geist Kaiserreich launched their own super-dreadnaught, faster than the Colossus class, with weaponry, armour and power close to rivalling the IMS Ayra. But, with seven Colossus class super-dreadnoughts in service, Saxonian confidence remained high.

Empress Joel I, concerned at Geist naval developments, ordered her forces to a state of preparedness with the Skean Empire following suit.

In 2718, after consideration of a number of possible locations, the UCS decided that Port McKinley along with the Havani ship construction facility at Anchorage would be the ideal choice to upgrade and push forward UCS interests in and around the Abyssal Void. Aware of the economic benefits such a base would provide, the local Havani authorities readily agreed especially since, with the right defences, both moons and the upgraded asteroid base would almost certainly be impregnable due to the difficulty of navigating the asteroid fields in the system and approaching Hades.

 

2720-2729

Saxonia mourned the sudden death of Empress Joel I as her daughter, Henriette, took up the reigns. The shock of the much-loved Empress's passing was compounded by the loss, with all aboard, of the newly launched Skean luxury liner SS Gargantua following her passage through the Ayra system hypergate. Echoing her mother's stance Empress Henriette continued to press for higher and higher production of warships in response to increased Geist presence in space common to both nations.

In 2726, Kaya Ishimori ascended the imperial throne of Akatsu following the assassination of her childless brother, Kuro Ishimori. Amongst her first acts is the formation of Akatsu's Bunrui Jigyōbu, an organisation devoted to Akatsu and the Ishimori dynasty. The division quickly grew to become one of the most secretive, ruthless and feared organisations in Akatsu history, involving the efforts of thousands and covering a vast array of specialisms.

Two years later, Geist Foreign Officer Erich Guttmann was assassinated in independent Vukan in the Karadordevic system near the Kochevnik borders and the Geist responded by issuing an ultimatum to the Zoran government. Skean offers of mediation were rebuffed and the Geist declared war on Zora and later on the LaVie & her allies. The Skean, honouring earlier treaties, responded by declaring war on the Geist and sending supporting forces to the LaVie planet of Sartre in the Ypres Nouveau system. The Kochevnik army suffered a significant defeat at the hands of the well organised Geist near Chudniv on Leszekin in the Nowe Prusy system.

With the Amaranthine War begun, a task force of three Geist cruisers and two destroyers were destroyed by a strong Skean naval group but the score is evened a few weeks later as Geist cruiser bombers destroyed three Skean cruisers. The Skean Republic's leaders called for two million more soldiers as the city-state of Spelt on Maigret in the Hapsburg system fell to advancing Geist forces and Geist ships started firing on the Saxonian city of Bosch in the Brython system. The Skean struck back destroying four Geist battleships in an engagement near Crick, an outer moon of a gas giant in the Apus system.

 

2730-2739

A task force of Skean ships engaged the Geist's most powerful battleship, GKV Wolfram, and destroyed her in the Hadrian system. The Geist declared all ships to be fair game as the Skean blockaded several major Geist planets.

Surface warfare entered a new phase with the Geist using nanotech-based weaponry that attacked and "digested" any non-resistant material including flesh forcing the development of heavier and more expensive protective armour. The horrific nature of the deaths and injuries resulted in formal war-crime accusations from the Skean, UCS and Kochevnik representatives which the Geist ignored. Massive numbers of Skean and Pax troops were landed on Thrace in the Magyar system but, despite initial good progress were forced to retreat and withdraw their troops. The retreat was carried out in good order but cost the allies nearly one hundred thousand soldiers.

The space liner SS Caesarus was attacked and destroyed only hours from safe port at Ayra, with several powerful and wealthy UCS citizens lost. The UCS lodged a formal protest which, again, the Geist ignored.

The Valentians, following secret negotiations with the Skean in which they were promised mining rights in the Donau Republik system, switched alliances to the growing Skean cause. Around the same time, Krivich orbital fortress orbiting Kachenko in the Tovarich system fell to the Geist.

In 2732, the Skean introduced conscription across all the Commonwealth nations following discussions between the member nations.

Near Uusi Suomi in the Klamar system, Skean and Geist naval forces clashed and, though there was no clear victor, the Skean claimed victory as the Geist fleet ran from the encounter. On Rurik, the Kochevnik won a huge victory over the Geist. Attacking the Geist in control of the planet, the Skean landed forces on Sartre to reinforce the advance guard of specialist Pax forces and bringing with them a new, small, heavily armed & armoured semi-intelligent tracked vehicle. The RT-1's basic decision-making capability was far more advanced than any previous mech-battleunit and was able to accurately identify, acquire and destroy enemy units much faster than human soldiers. The Skean claimed the new weapon, nicknamed "Robotank", would change the face of surface warfare.

In 2734, their first aggressive move of the war, the UCS decided that their freighters were to be armed with ship-to-ship missiles and anti-missile systems against the Geist cruise-bomber threat. In Sol system, a Geist cruise-bomber destroyed a Skean hospital ship returning to base on Mars having dropped sick and injured at specialist hospital facilities orbiting Ganymede.

In the Kochevnik arena, citizens, starving and sick of war, started to revolt against their leaders but the revolt was crushed and their leader Dimitri Greshnev escaped to the Berserker world, Uusi Suomi. Skean and Pax forces freed Sartre from Geist forces and, heavily reinforced, dropped on Al-Salaam in the Aryana system as well as on Maigret.

Midway through the decade, the UCS formally entered the war with the first troops transferred to the newly reclaimed orbital defence platform at Sartre. At the same time, slipping quietly behind Skean lines, Geist cruise-bombers targeted Attlee on New Albion, the Saxon Homeworld. Over seven hundred were killed and many thousands were injured. The Geist also took the city-state Riversk on Kettlerskaya in the Caupo system putting the Kochevnik forces there on the run while, on Tauern in the Schlesvig system, the Valentian army collapsed before a massive Geist onslaught and over half a million Valentian troops were captured.

Having smashed the Khazari occupiers, captured Arwad, a moon of Ka'aba in the Akkadia system, the Skean foreign secretary Charmaine Barclay proposed a homeland for the N'Chari on the moon.

In 2736, the Kochevnik, by this time communist, sued for peace signing a humiliating treaty with the Geist and ceded several major planet-states. Although the Geist were still securing their borders, much of the newly gained territory was deep inside what was previously part of the Kochevnik nation which allowed them to start moving significant numbers of assets back towards other fronts.

Following a huge campaign to support the construction and further development of their "Robotank", the Skean not only rolled out over a thousand new Mk. II RT-1s but the first RT-2s. The RT-2, though slightly less well armoured and armed than the RT-1, was faster and more independent. Unlike its forebear, RT-2 was a "walker", able to walk & run on tentacular mechanised legs which allowed for increased speed over rough terrain and enhanced versatility as a weapons platform. With its ability to form its legs into wheel-like appendages, move extremely fast to a target then shift into attack mode it was not only effective but acted as a terror weapon against opposing troops.

The UCS introduced their first armoured MI (Mobile Infantry) division, a fast, rapidly-acting force of troops in specialist armour with movement amplification technology that assisted their actions and protected the soldier against the Geist nanotech weapons.

In a blow to Geist public morale their fighter ace, Rikey Hofstadter, "The Black Butcher", was killed in a dogfight in Jupiter's upper atmosphere when she was taken by surprise by a squadron of three Darugan fighters.

Towards the end of 2737, a radical move by their new Commander, the Skean reorganised their military combining the normally separate forces into a single organisational structure based on space naval operations. One of the first moves of the new Commander-in-Chief was to retire the old guard including, much to the disgust of senior naval officers, Naval ones. She promoted several mid-ranking ex-Army, Navy and Space Air Force officers to senior command positions in their place, reckoning their fresh tactical insight could give her new organisation a significant edge. It was to be a model that many nations would later adopt.

In the Sartre system, having improved their tactics against the Saxon homeworld, a large wolf-pack of Geist cruise-bombers jumped in and fired off a series of kinetic salvos at Seine, then jumped away again. It emerged after the war that the Geist were using mutes against their will and the allies had little defence against the tactic until the Skean and UCS co-developed a class of ships known as "Corvettes", small, fast, lightly armoured but well-armed and designed purely to hunt down cruise-bombers. The attacks diminished and, as greater pressure was put on the Geist on other fronts, stopped almost completely.

New Skean tactics, large numbers of RTs, many placed under direct UCS command, the new UCS MI and the innovative use of atmosphere capable fighters started to tell against the Geist and forced retreats along several fronts. As further retreats occurred, the Geist alliance began to collapse and her allies surrendered to Skean and UCS forces.

Finally, late in the year and in secret, senior Geist, Skean and UCS commanders met to agree on peace which, though the stated terms were severe, did not include the full formal surrender of the Geist. The Geist fleet surrendered to Skean forces at Wolfpack on Cairngorm in the Alba system, the combined victorious allies and the defeated Geist fleets were said to be so vast that they darkened the skies of Cairngorm's sister planet Braeriach.

In 2738, war ceased on all fronts and across The Extent citizens were jubilant. The war was over.

Following the end of The Amaranthine or First Galactic War, the Kochevnik, although internally unsettled and ostensibly at peace with other nations, sought to foment their new philosophy of communism across The Extent. They were most successful in neighbouring Zuìzhōng.

On Saamiskaya in the Severnaya Rossii system, Saxon forces suppressed a Kochevnik offensive as it descended into a state of civil war even though aided by Zuìzhōng's budding communist regime.

In 2739, a final act of defiance, the Geist fleet, manned by skeleton crews in Wolfpack space, destroyed themselves. One Skean Cruise-bomber, hit by a large, relatively slow-moving mass of Geist debris, was damaged beyond repair with the loss of her Captain, Executive Officer and eight of her crew. After resisting for months, the Geist signed a treaty of full surrender at the Chateau l'Vo near the city-state of Seine on Sartre though the terms were far harsher than expected. The treaty became known as the Treaty l'Vo.

Following long discussions, the decision was made to decommission Port McKinley's first orbital defence platform since it had a single launch track and could host less than a hundred fighters. Two more asteroids were selected to replace it, each capable of housing more than four hundred fighters, and so expand the base's capabilities.

 

2740-2749

In the Severnaya Rossii system Kochevnik communists, supported by Zuìzhōng elements, were finally victorious over the Skean supported old guard forcing a complete withdrawal.

Conditions in the Geist Empire, shaking itself apart in the aftermath of the Amaranthine, were deteriorating and anti-N'Chari sentiment grew rapidly. A monarchist revolt was defeated whilst the LaVie occupied Lörick on Rēnos in the Neu Thuringen system and clashed with Geist citizenry. The Geist agreed to cut back their armed forces as per the Treaty l'Vo and other Geist allies were similarly harshly treated.

Four years after the end of the war, having failed to pay their agreed war debts and with much of their territory occupied by Skean and UCS forces, the pressure on the Geist rose to fully abide by the terms of the treaty. In Kochevnik, post war logistics were blamed for the steadily worsening famine across the nation.

Two years later the Geist economy, still suffering from the severe treaty conditions imposed by the war's victors, was still collapsing even though a secret deal had been struck with the Kochevnik promising full economic cooperation. Meanwhile, on Rōmulus in the Pollux system, Valentian fascists marched on Palatine.

In 2746, on Clovis in the Macht Es system, Geist citizens defied the occupying LaVie. The LaVie sought to control the rioters by opening fire on them and occupying the planet but that didn't prevent Geist Fascists from holding their first rally in Porsche on Clovis' sister planet, Raetia.

Eleven years after the end of the war, as the Kochevnik nation mourned the death of their leader Greshnev, Communists took the Valentian government in the elections.

On Higuchi, Empress Ishimori died and her son, Kazuo Ishimori, took the throne. At the young Emperor's behest UCS, Skean and Akatsu representatives agreed on curbs on military activity in and around the Abyssal Void.

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