- 1 Astronavigational Codes
- 2 Description (Specifications)
- 3 History & Background (Dossier)
- 4 Worlds & Sectors (Astrography)
- 5 References & Contributors (Sources)
|Pirian Domain||Pre-Imperial||PirD||No standard code||None|
|Pirian Domain||1st Survey (300)||Pd||2-ltr code||None|
|Pirian Domain||2nd Survey (1065)||PiDo||4-ltr code||None|
Native to Gakghang Sector, the Pirians have expanded and contracted multiple times through their history. The Pirian Domain is the current incarnation of their main polity, which includes their homeworld Piriga. This confederation's legal framework is a collection of trade, extradition, and migration agreements that survive primarily by inertia and convenience.
Many of the agreements are specifically designed to counter or accommodate the fads and frenzies common in Pirian society, resulting in the eventual continuation of civilization by inertia. Notably, secession requires that a majority of the population of the seceding world vote for it consistently in elections held once per year over 10 years. In the beginning (and lasting until 73), new colonies were not permitted to secede for their first 100 years, explicitly because colonial founders were prone to founding a colony to secede with no thought to the lives of those born and raised on the colony.
Likewise, the "upper tier" of Domain-wide laws are deliberately hard to change, requiring effort well beyond a typical fad. "Lower tier" laws can be changed quickly, but are limited in their severity and may not contradict - directly or in practice - any upper tier law. (For instance, the usual prohibitions on murder are upper tier laws. Most of the fine points of what counts as self defense exceptions are lower tier laws.) The most common way to make an upper tier law is when a lower tier law stays on the books long enough to be considered for promotion (minimum duration varying by category of law, but a minimum of 10 years).
A single Deliberature (officially, a formal body to continually renegotiate the Domain's binding agreements) considers both lower tier and upper tier laws, spending far more time on the former. The Deliberature consists of representatives from each system based on its population: up to 9,999 people yields 1 representative, 10,000-99,999 yields 2, 100,000-999,999 yields 3, and so on. Each system is free to select its delegates in "any manner that represents the will of the people residing there", which on some worlds is the only aspect of local government resembling democracy. Executive and judicial functions are performed by appointees of the Deliberature. While there is the usual aristocracy, the Pirian Domain lacks any direct equivalent of Imperial Nobility, beyond non-inheritable honors awarded for individual excellence (at most, roughly the equivalent of a Knight).
Some legal scholars believe these laws could be a template to bring stability to polities of the Vargr Extents, having been designed for a similarly naturally fractious people, but as of 1105 there have been no serious attempts to test this - first and foremost because almost no one in the Vargr Extents knew of the Pirian Domain until 1104.
When the Pirians were granted jump drive by the Yaskoydri Technocracy in -2001, they were incorporated into the Technocracy. This lasted until the Technocracy's Third Doctrinal War, which ended in -937, and consisted of a series of internal sabotages and attacks. Many Pirians thought the Technocracy had either openly attacked them or callously disregarded their suffering, especially in their efforts to save the Technocracy's capital, and so renounced allegiance. The Technocracy suddenly had a neighbor, albeit one separated by many parsecs: Piriga and Yaskoyloyt are about a sector apart. Proof of the Technocracy's innocence would not come until the -850s, by which time the split was too ingrained: by then, a substantial majority of Pirians had never lived under Technocracy rule, and had no desire to reunite.
Helping the split was the fact that, even while officially part of the Technocracy, Pirian space had never formally bordered Yaskoydri space. The new Pirian Domain's worlds were clearly Pirian, and few questioned the astrographic loyalties of the remaining Technocracy systems. However, over a thousand years of cultural upbringing was hard to shake even by such perceived betrayal: while individual worlds have sometimes warred upon others, the Pirian Domain and the Yaskoydri Technocracy as a whole have never been at war.
Some have speculated that the Pirians' upbringing at the hands of the Technocracy left them with no "cultural childhood", leaving the Domain with a marked affinity for fads and trends. Not unlike the Vargr Extents, leaders often rise up on personal charisma but have trouble translating that mandate beyond a world-wide scale. This has prevented them from advancing as fast as the Technocracy, but has also insulated them from falls similar to the Technocracy's Doctrinal Wars.
Knowing themselves and their nature, the leaders of the movement to separate from the Technocracy proposed a series of mutual agreements that would be initially binding on any new colony, but which any system could opt out of under strict and painfully slow procedures, most notably requiring an election resulting in majority approval to secede each year for 10 straight. New colonies would be most able to overcome this obstacle, so any newly colonized world was forbidden from holding the first election toward this end within its first 100 years, ensuring that almost all of those with the verve to found a new colony would be dead before it could attempt independence. In over 2,000 years, despite many attempts that got approval in one election or even two in a row, remarkably few have managed 10 consecutively, and almost all of those eventually folded back into the Domain. Far more ink and emotion has been spilled over the theoretical injustice of these measures than on actual, credible attempts to follow them - exactly as the founders predicted. Also as they predicted, attempts to remove or substantially alter them (before unforeseeable shifts following contact with the Solomani Preserve) failed, usually before any actual binding vote could be taken.
The Domain began a slow process of expansion in every direction - usually, when some group got fed up with their current world and had enough resources to set up a new colony. It spread like a fungus, latching on to every system it could conveniently reach and growing on each one. It helped that this was the opposite of the Technocracy's pattern of concentrating almost everyone on one planet, treating the rest of their space as minor subjects of "the world that truly matters".
A New Humaniti
In 1, ambassadors to Yaskoyloyt were present when Solomani Preserve scouts arrived seeking the ones mentioned in ruins orbiting Bridgeholm. The Technocracy had known of the Preserve and were expecting their arrival, but had failed to mention anything about this to the Pirians. The ambassadors made the best they could of the situation and introduced themselves, soon learning of a mission the Preserve had undertaken to protect themselves from the Imperium they had fled and any potential successor, and pledged the Domain's assistance as best they could. That got them access to the true prize: the scouts' cultural databases, meaning ways of living not fundamentally derived from the Technocracy.
To the Pirians, this was a prize beyond measure. The ambassadors were celebrated as heroes, but primarily they were honored by the new ways being rapidly assimilated over the next few decades - after a wave of further ambassadors descended upon the Preserve to further record and distribute their culture, many of them on what came to be called the "boomerang teacher" program: a sponsored 2 year visit to the Solomani Preserve (including months-long trips to and from) followed by 2 years teaching what they learned (in classrooms, via media, or via any other means that reached many people). Eventually, the Pirian Domain even changed its official language from Oynprith to Anglic.
Vargr Love Bombing
No Pirian could have anticipated the most dramatic resulting change: the discovery of vargr, and the knowledge that they lie just beyond the rimward limits of the Domain. One glance at Preserve propaganda showing vargr and humans living together was enough to convince most Pirians that they wanted this too. Their ambassadors had promised to help keep the border barren.
Many a Yaskoydri, Solomani, and even droyne psychologist has struggled to understand how so many Pirians could have come to the same conclusion - seemingly barbaric to the Pirians' neighbors - without a second thought, but few doubt that they did. Without much deliberation, the Pirian Domain began to organize a slave ship fleet, to abduct and enslave entire vargr colonies and bring them into the Domain.
These academic investigations overlook an important point: the Pirians did not come up with this plan entirely on their own. Scouts into Ghoekhnael Sector, following Preserve star charts, made contact with vargr corsairs engaged in tit-for-tat raiding of colonies with little to steal. The scouts (having also learned Gvegh from the Preserve) introduced themselves and asked how the colonies might be depopulated. Close reading of logs of these conversations reveals the corsair crews through the Domain scouts were proposing to evacuate and plunder entire colonies, and suggested enslaving the colonists - which the scouts misinterpreted in turn, thinking the corsairs were suggesting extreme measures to rescue the colonists from miserable lives of drudgery.
The corsairs came back to Domain space alongside the scouts, and their crews interrogated extensively to design massively expanded liners capable of transporting entire planetary populations - though only of small worlds, with less than 100,000 vargr - then made into senior officers aboard the same. More months-long scouting expeditions (pretending to be wandering Preserve scouts if they made contact at all) confirmed the populations and defensive capabilities of smaller worlds, as well as schedules of any visiting ships. The scouts rendezvoused with each other and the slave fleets at prearranged times in barren space near the coreward edge of Ghoekhnael Sector, at which time the final target for that raid was determined.
The slave fleets broke out when no visiting starships were expected to be present. Any that were, were captured (or destroyed if necessary) as a first priority. Then the fleets overwhelmed what defenses the starport had, descended on the colony, herded everyone they could onto the fleet, killed anyone who refused to board (or who got away, using shipboard thermal sensors designed to be accurate at many thousands of kilometers to pinpoint heat signatures at ranges of a few kilometers), plundered all the cargo they could (making sure to leave no recording equipment), and left. Vargr ships visiting later would find a mysteriously abandoned colony. Occasional survivors have inevitably proven too shaken to give clear descriptions, but Akumgeda Vargr have occasionally been brought in to interrogate them, getting an impression that the invaders "loved" the colonists.
The slavers acted not out of malice, but because they truly believed they were rescuing the colonists. Their method of slavery derived from the practice, dating back to pre-spaceflight Terra, carried in historical databases during the flight of the Phoenix 2800, then unwittingly revealed by the Solomani Preserve, of "love bombing": overwhelming the target with affection and interest until they begin to identify with the love bombers. This particular variant was designed to make the target compliant, eroding any desire to "go home" or have any further contact with their former society, ostensibly so as to ease their transition into Domain society. That it accomplished this by eroding their wills until they become slaves was rarely consciously considered by those doing it, who instead saw their practice as a specific application of steward skills known throughout Charted Space. The first slaver crews were screened for anyone who might consider this angle; later crews allowed such individuals, but only if they were sociopathic enough to not care. (Indeed, the occasional implantation of cybernetics to assist with making the vargr compliant was barely recorded in history, and in each case the documentation regarded it as routine therapeutic use. Without strong evidence that it was exactly what the documents claimed, many detractors of the process have started with this aspect, assuming that it must be cybernetic brainwashing for those who do not submit to less extreme means.)
Any vargr born in the Domain, or taken at a young enough age, was not subject to this practice: if the Domain was the only life they knew, there was no other "home" to return to. Indeed, for Domain native vargr (which soon became a majority), treatment was a solid 9 on the Tetusu-Dene Scale; a majority of Pirians identified more with these vargr than other branches of Humaniti. This practice would continue for roughly 1,000 years, until the slaver fleets were scrapped or remodeled to assist with repairs to the Domain after the Empress Wave. Later crews had a disproportionately high number of vargr, many of whom saw the same appeal as vargr in the Vargr Extents saw in piracy.
Growth, Splintering, and Empress Wave
"Incorporating vargr population and Solomani Preserve culture" was the primary activity for much of the next century, slowly fading into the background. There was enough backlash to finally remove the rule against new colonies declaring independence, and soon colonies independent from the start began to appear around the Domain - though never to rimward, given the public perception that independent rimward colonization would anger the Solomani Preserve, and never far to spinward, to avoid the Ognar Worlds. (At least, officially. Unofficially, better trade opportunities lay to trailing and coreward, no matter whether future colonial leaders admitted to having considered the economics of location.) By 250, Domain technology had advanced to the point that, when the Yaskoydri Technocracy faced a threat from coreward they could not defeat alone, the Domain was able (with one last bit of assistance from the Solomani Preserve) to begin construction of ships with Spinal Weapons Mounts with which to aid their neighbors, by now viewed more like hidebound but gregarious cousins than domineering parents. The aftermath of this Fourth Doctrinal War would see the Tijian Khaganate and Federation of the Fused Mains spin off (see their articles for details).
Between the introduction of more capable naval weaponry, and the introduction of new and not-as-welcoming neighbors, the next few centuries saw intrigues, cold wars, and a few occasional hot wars as the Domain discovered space warfare. Tactics that were multiple millennia old in most of Charted Space were new to all present save the Solomani Preserve, who were reluctant to share, especially after their discovery of the Third Imperium colony on Geokha. Raids into Ghoekhnael Sector became more refined and more insistent, going after steadily larger and better defended targets. By the time the Empress Wave passed over the Domain (hitting the sector border around 1080), almost the entirety of Ghoekhnael's four coreward subsectors had been rendered barren. Many Domain historians note this as a dark time for the Domain, though Preserve historians tend to insist their not revealing more than they did caused it to be an age of relative peace and prosperity.
The Empress Wave brought a form of mercy by causing so much damage that war became a side thought. The Yaskoydri Technocracy had given enough warning (either directly, or by example when Pirians saw what became of worlds that failed to prepare) that preparatory measures were taken on most worlds. In many cases (especially on hostile environment worlds), these measures amounted to evacuating the worlds - following the practices of their slave fleets (and in some cases outright borrowing the fleets to act as transports) and essentially looting themselves on the way out. This limited the casualties, but major industrial damage was still done, leaving the Domain with a lot of reclaiming and rebuilding to do.
This lasted until about 1150, when their scouts (having been forewarned and equipped with canaries by the Solomani Preserve) again visited Ghoekhnael Sector, discovered Virus taking root, and reported back that whatever the Domain thought about whether their ancestors should have "rescued" vargr, the vargr of Ghoekhnael Sector really did need rescue now.
Major historical events timeline
- -937: Split off from the Yaskoydri Technocracy following the Third Doctrinal War.
- -925: Formal and restrictive secession procedures approved, keeping the Domain together despite its fractious nature.
- 1: Meeting the Solomani Preserve.
- 4-36: Height of the "boomerang teacher" program. Domain officially adopts Anglic and renames its worlds accordingly.
- 9: First direct encounter between Domain scouts and Ghoekhnael Sector Vargr corsairs. Corsairs convinced to accompany scouts to the Domain.
- 15: First raid on Ghoekhnael Sector. Target was a colony of 1,063 Vargr. 21 died on planet (20 militia died in fighting, 1 was undergoing medical treatment and died of complications), 1,042 taken off-world. Of those, 261 were thrown out the airlocks before and during jump after proving dangerous or too resistant to persuasion; the remaining 801 were persuaded to live in the Pirian Domain. Neighboring colonies assume it was the corsairs who went missing 6 years ago and begin fruitlessly scouring their subsector.
- 73: Secession procedures relaxed. New colonies begin declaring independence ASAP, slowing the Domain's territorial expansion.
- 249-255: Yaskoydri Technocracy Fourth Doctrinal War. Solomani Preserve gives Pirian Domain plans for Spinal Weapons Mounts, which Domain uses to build its first true battleships. Unlike the Solomani Preserve, the Domain keeps its battleships afterward.
- 284-297: Tijia conquers and founds the Tijian Khaganate. Domain looks on with concern, but takes no official action as it is outside the Domain's borders.
- 404-413: Increased piracy, capped with the theft of multiple battleships, triggers the 10 year secession process of the worlds that go on to form the Federation of the Fused Mains. Domain attempts to respond, but the battleships are finally tracked down in 411 and officially disposed of in 412, by which time opinion in the seceding worlds has solidified enough for the final vote in 413.
- 554: With the colonization of Haeyo, the Domain is within Jump-2 of the Tijian Khaganate. Occasional skirmishes flare up, rarely involving more than a handful of ships from either side. Domain begins colonizing spinward in order to block the Khaganate from encroaching on the Ognar Worlds.
- 1040: Approximate date of first warning from Yaskoydri Technocracy of the incoming Empress Wave. Preparations commence. Hostile environment worlds begin to evacuate their populations.
- 1060-1080: Rough period of Domain exposure to Empress Wave.
- Circa 1150: Scouts confirm Virus in Ghoekhnael Sector. The Second Rescue Fleet - the largest mobilization of Pirian war assets ever, with heraldry evoking the retroactively named First Rescue Fleet active during the Fourth Doctrinal War - assembles and ravages opponents found to rimward, directly and indirectly helping turn much of the sector into Die Back Worlds.
Worlds & Sectors (Astrography)
- Datsatl Sector
- Gakghang Sector
The capital of this polity is located in the following location:
World Listing: 1105
References & Contributors (Sources)
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