History is not merely a chronology. It is a ongoing analysis of the trends, forces and decisions that have led to large hinge points. Hinge points are places where the question of what comes next is in doubt and there are multiple options. While we don’t like to admit it, not every moment is equally important. But it is in the acceptance of this greater truth that pushes us to be greater historians and you, my little vassals, will come to appreciate this truth in time. Let this chronology guide you but remember that while Philosophers have only interpreted the galaxy in various ways the point, however, is to change it.
The Convocation is the most recent (and I don’t say ‘final’) epoch. The current state of the galaxy occurs here and it is in this epoch that our current struggles, powers and imperatives reside. What you do with this information will undoubtedly change the future, because you cannot create a rational remedy to the problems of the day without understanding them. But that understanding leads to power.
From that, however, I must state that there is an intermediate Epoch known as The Maelstroms. It honestly isn’t as grand as many of the others, merely the breath after the plunge. The larger organisational forces of the galaxy exhaust themselves, diminish and fall and once again it becomes every planet for themselves. Despite being 783 years long the only real event of historical significance was when a small fleet of ships looking for a viable gate-path to Cyriss Prime were attacked and destroyed by a (very probably) Empyrean defensive force.
The Convocation begins with the founding of the most current large land holder of the galaxy, the Iron Star Alliance. It grew, like most things, from a small regional alliance that manages to defeat its local rivals and expand into their territories. The Alliance, above all, promised peace and security, and while many describe this as tyranny it was definitely a sought after commodity. It grew quickly through both diplomacy and annexation and focused itself on the larger trade routes. Within 50 years all the large structures were formed, the Supreme Assembly, the Paladin fighting force and the Justicars. The core of the structure was on force, defence and strength of arms.
(editors note: And with their only tool being such a mighty hammer, so much of the galaxy began to look like various types of nail)
The Alliance eventually banned the Aeternus Continuum as an organisation, although many (such as myself) argue that it was because we were agitating with their trade unions for greater justice for their workers. Ultimately the AC continued their work under greater secrecy, so the banning meant nothing.
The Alliance attempted to gain control of the Marches. First through subtlety, then through force. But the stubborn and Tenacious Marcher lords resisted fiercely, exacting a massive toll on the Paladin forces when they invaded Ravonels World, the gate to the Marches. The war continued until the Alliance sued for peace and left with an official treaty and a much emboldened Marcher Worlds.
After this embarrassment the Alliance fell into a civil war between primarily its mining interests and aristocratic families. These two powers were inevitably going to come into conflict although the fact that it happened openly through strength of arms was a historical oddity. Fighting broke out across Alliance space and lasted for 7 years. The conflict ran on a low burn, disrupting many lives but never fully building to the massive conflagrations of previous empire civil wars. It was eventually decided diplomatically with the institution of the Septarchy: 7 elected officials who ran as 7 regents beholden to the Supreme Assembly as well as the inclusion of significant mining and other industries as members of that Supreme Assembly.
(Editors Note: You may note that this did not answer the central question of the conflict. But both sides agreed to end open hostilities in exchange for more power over the state machinery. Curious.)
And into this galaxy: The Portable Void Gate is invented. No longer were large fleets required to drop troops directly into the battlefield. Now portable Void Gates could summon troops in from kilometres away. And with that warfare was changed forevermore. They were adopted by every power of every size (although the question of whether the Empyreans already had this technology is an open question).
And with a new method to make war, war inevitably follows.
The Khazars bristle under Iron Star rule and rebel. The Marchers go to war with the Aeternus Continuum over charges of infiltration. The Marchers declared war on the Iron Star Alliance after discovering secret military bases in their territory and bombed the city of Dreggsmere into dust.
And within this conflict over borders and resources, the sleeping giant awoke. The Empyreans burst through multiple gates seemingly intent on reclaiming the galaxy that was taken from them in their slumber.
And that is a short history of the Galaxy of Cyriss. I hope you, young vassal, take this knowledge to heart and drink deeply from it. We are, as many historians argue, at the edge of this Epoch and another and all I can say is that it will be as blood soaked as the rest. The next Hinge Point is coming, it may be you who will push it in one direction or the other.