Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Orions and Antarans

(Excerpted from “Pre-Psilonic Galactic Civilizations” Vol. II, by Ectron
Victor, retired Master Adjudicator, Psilon Central History Institute.)
As a story is told and retold over the course of generations, no matter the
attention paid to detail and no matter the importance of the tale, the truth
is gradually nibbled away by little mistakes and innocent exaggerations.
Carried off on these well-intentioned, tiny feet, the facts deteriorate
softly and painlessly into a condition generally referred to as “shrouded
by time.”

The legends concerning the Orions and Antarans are shrouded by time.
What is certain is that at one time both races coexisted in the galaxy. The
scope of their power and technical advancement has surely been
enhanced by hyperbole, but that they were far superior to anything now
known is indisputable. Perhaps it was inevitable that two such behemoths
meet in violence. The legends paint the Antarans as ruthless, xenophobic
killers, but we all know that history is written by the victors.
The Orion-Antaran war was a protracted holocaust of galactic
proportions. While we can never know if they truly flung entire star
systems across deep space as weapons (as the storytellers claim), our
astrophysicists have uncovered evidence of directed energy bursts the
power of which staggers the imagination. That both races had the ability
to raze planets no one contests. The Orions eventually defeated the
Antarans. Rather than exterminating the race, as the stories claim the
Antarans would certainly have done, the Orions chose to imprison their
enemies in a “pocket dimension”—a volume the size of a single star
system, formed and carved somehow out of the fabric of space-time.
Physicists to this day puzzle over the theory and the technique, but the
result was obvious; the Antarans were banished one and all from
this dimension.

At this point, even the storytellers admit that the legends become vague.
Some time after the war, the Orion race inexplicably disappeared. They
left only two legacies for the galaxy’s future inhabitants. One was the
tales of their power and legends of the Antaran war; the other is the Orion
system itself. One planet circles this star, and it is reputed to be the
original home world of the Orion race. Despite the incredible potential this
abandoned world must hold, no one has yet plundered or colonized it. The
reason for this is that the system is only uninhabited, not undefended.
The Orions left a single Guardian to protect their home. Perhaps they
intend to return some day.

Perhaps the Antarans intend to return, too.

- From the Master of Orion II: Battle at Antares game manual

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