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New Home: History

4788AD Outward Bound

The wealth and advancement of New Home was demonstrated in 4788, when the Hierarchy launched the Clusters’ first new interstellar spacecraft, the Outward Bound. Hierarchy propaganda proclaimed the mission to be a triumph of New Home culture and technology. In fact it was used by the government as an excuse to exile nearly a million political opponents.

In previous centuries the Overlords had simply executed their enemies. But increased wealth had allowed a powerful and well-educated middle class to develop. Opponents could no longer be disposed of so easily.

The wheelies and revolutionaries who survived the trip to Colchis had none of the advantages enjoyed by the first colonists to land on New Home. The Outward Bound was much smaller than the C-Jammer, and far more of its space had been used for cold-sleep capsules than provisions for the new colony. The new colonists were simply turned loose on the virgin world and had to eke out a precarious existence with virtually no help from the mothership. Nearly a quarter of the colonists died in the first winter.

The plan was to force the colonists to work in mines, extracting rare metals and radioactives from this mineral rich world, while the Outward Bound was adapted to carry the cargo back to New Home. The crew were equipped with a formidable arsenal which included gunships and orbital bombardment lasers. They used their weapons to enforce order in what was essentially a huge open prison.

4810AD Revolution

Back on New Home, the seeds of the Hierarchy's downfall had long been present in its unjust system. Twenty years after the launch of the Outward Bound, just as the second load of prisoner colonists were preparing to leave for Colchis, the Hierarchy was overthrown by the Grand Uprising.

After a nearly a century of slow reforms, the Hierarchy’s leadership was seized by a reactionary group called the “Illuminati”. This new group wished to turn back the clock and reassert absolute Overlord control over the lower orders. They slaughtered hundreds of thousands of dissidents in a series of brutal purges between 4803-4809.

By 4808 the opposition had crystallised into a well organised revolutionary army. The Grand Uprising was a popular revolt in six New Home provinces. After a confused few months, the six provinces declared themselves to be the Home Free State, and attempted to hold free elections.

The Hierarchy responded with orbital bombardment, and finally a ground assault. The shooting war (New Home’s first) lasted for about three months. It culminated in the battle at Robson’s Plain where three battalions of Colonial Guard were defeated by rebel forces. This action left the Free State controlling half of the land surface area of the planet, and nearly one third of its population. The Hierarchy was a spent force, both politically and militarily. Colonial Guard forces, low on morale and lacking strong leadership, were falling back on all fronts.

The Overlords still controlled vast swathes of territory, and commanded a fearsome array of orbital bombardment platforms. To finally defeat them might have cost millions of lives. Rather than pay this awful price, the Free State offered the Overlords the option of exile.

Finally it was agreed. 100,000 people, the vast bulk of the Overlord population embarked on Vanderveken, the new colony ship. The unwilling colonists, terrified of pursuit, only agreed to depart after destroying every other spacecraft and shipyard in the New Home system. On 12th August, 4810 the Vanderveken fired up its engines and left for the furthest habitable planet yet discovered in the Clusters. This was NI-0106, a system which had been surveyed by the C-Jammer in c.4750. Vanderveken took over 130 years to reach its destination, arriving in 4942. The Overlords named their new home ‘Esperanza’ (Hope).

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