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"Life thrives, stars shine, empires rise, and fall... But only one thing remains eternal - the War. Cities burn, plants wilt, and the Ancients will show the Confederacy the true consequences of their gravest mistake." - Anonymous

The War of the Ancients (WoTA), 88,073 CE - 88,433 CE, was a conflict lasting 360 years, taking place between nations situated in and around Via Aylathiya. The conflict was the most widespread conflict taking place in the region since the Great Empyreal Crusade. The War of the Ancients completely reshaped both the Quintet Payotari Association (QPA) and the Confederacy of Borealis (CoB) as superpowers and has the single greatest influence of any modern conflict for these nations. The effects of the war are readily apparent even until the modern day.

After millennium of domination by the Confederacy of Borealis and the tensions this caused with the QPA, it took only a small conflict over the Vault of Secrets for the War of the Ancients to begin. While the war started in the Borealis Arm, the focus of the conflict shifted to the whole of Via Aylathiya. Throughout much of the war in Via Aylathiya, the Quintet Payotari Association's Vaults and other advanced craft proved superior to the Confederacy's aging and outdated, albeit large, standing army. As the conflict drew to a close, the Confederacy's allies were able to muster enough strength to create a stalemate far from core systems. This stalemate was eventually followed by an unconditional armistice rather than a peace treaty.

Historians consider the War of the Ancients to have started on the 18th of November, 88,073 CE shortly after the destruction of the Vault of Secrets at the hand of a the CoB, particularly a fleet from the United Federation of Star Systems. After this, what some historians consider to be an adjacent and unrelated war, began when Drusidia and its Martial Axis took advantage of the conflict to raid Sedruan anomalies.

During the conflict, research in the fields of FTL travel and military technology skyrocketed, creating a boom of new corporations and bureaus specializing in the research and development of technology. The Celestial Plague was one of the largest consequences of the war. It continues to be a pestering issue to major nations in the modern-day. Intergalactic politics were shaken up very thouroughly and it seemed that the millennia of Confederate dominance following the Commonwealth's Eclipse had finally come to an end. To this day, the Confederacy's pride as a nation is damaged, the Quintet Puontari Association greatly respected, and the Commonwealth has become the center of the region as it had been for most of its history.

Background

Attacks by Beatrix

Main Article: Beatrix

In 719 BCE, a now-destroyed nation known as the Yohjan Confederacy created an artificial intelligence they named Beatrix. While the meaning of the name is lost, its influence surely has not been. Upon the collapse of the Yohjan Confederacy, Beatrix was unable to function as it had; its programmers did not foresee how it would respond to the collapse of the Yohjan Confederacy. Armed with a fleet of ships and quadrillions of soldiers still loyal to it, the AI started destroying what it deemed to be threats to the Yohjan Confederacy, fulfilling its original mission. With no one with the authority to give it orders, it continued these actions. By the 10,000's CE, it became increasingly violent in its methods, causing the deaths of two-digit percentages of individuals in Via Aylathiya.

While mostly contained by the beginning of the War of the Ancients, Beatrix had been becoming increasingly unpredictable. Rather than focusing on just its home galaxy, it and its forces began moving to Orithiya in 85,813 CE. In a large and empty region, it began to rebuild its lost forces. Mistaking the QPA for an ancient enemy of the Yohjans, it staged an attack on many of their worlds, prompting a military response. Beatrix would continue these attacks until well after the war when it was finally destroyed by Claudia, another AI created by the Yohjans. The QPA blamed the release of the AI on the Confederacy of Borealis. They demanded fairly minor reparations, however, the CoB refused to pay citing "budget issues." The QPA responded with banning citizens from the CoB, banning trade with them, and deporting any civilians within their borders. This marks the first point in which tensions between the QPA and Confederacy came to be.

The Vault of Secrets

The United Federation of Star Systems, a prominent member state within the Confederacy of Borealis at the time, had a history of imperialist and expansionist attitudes. It had its sights set on a new target for colonization, sections of the Orithiya Sector not officially claimed by any nation. Buried deep across the stars of Aylathiya lied a construct known as the Vault of Secrets. This Vault had travelled to the galaxy sometime before then. It was officially the property of the QPA, however, they were not certain of its location within the galaxy.

Upon further analysis of the Vault of Secrets, the UF decided that it was a very dangerous object, its vast size and apparent weapons capability were particularly concerning. They dispatched various scouts into the artifact, inadvertently triggering the automated defense systems. Within seconds the Vault's defensive protocols activated. It closed entrances, turned on its weapons, and signaled the QPA of its location and that it was being attacked. The signals took a substantial amount of time to reach them. By the time the QPA picked up the signals, scouts had already searched through much of the Vault of Secrets. Immediately, the Quintet Payotari Association deployed an intimidating force to the Vault. The UF believed the artifact to be an ancient one from Sedrua or the Triumvirate Civilization. When the QPA arrived with a large military force claiming the artifact to be theirs, the UF did not yield control of the object, believing their claims to be a ruse.

Tensions began rising as the Vault was boarded by both UF and QPA forces in an attempt to take the Vault. Despite being met with fierce opposition and numerous warnings from the Quintet Payotari Association, the UF would not give in. The value of the object was simply too high. The UF only increased their pursuit of the object upon finding ancient and powerful artifacts within it. The generals leading the boarding forces saw the great potential in these artifacts, and sent further reinforcements after learning of them. In particular, the Eternal Battery and The Perdition interested these generals. The Quintet Payotari Association issued final warnings, before they gained control of the Vault's defense systems and began firing upon the UF 's troops.

The Vault's Incident

With the Vault of Secrets activating numerous onboard weapons, UF forces were immediately fired upon following multiple warnings. Despite seeing the terrifying capability of these weapons, UF generals stood their ground, calling for more forces as the conflict began to escalate. Scouting forces mostly evacuated and were replaced with heavily armed personnel and drone forces. The Quintet Payotari Association waited for these forces to board the Vault before they unleashing two weapons known as the Perdition and the Eternal Battery. In conjunction, the two devices devastated UF forces on the ship.

The Quintet Payotari Association was initially unconcerned about the besiegement of the Vault of Secrets, while the UF was a capable military, they believed, it would be impossible for them to muster the force needed to take the Vault for themselves. As an increasing number of UF backup forces arrived, the QPA realized that they were serious about taking the Vault. Fissures and structural failures began to show on the surface of the Vault of Secrets several months into the siege. This called for an advanced section of the Vault's Incident, which consisted of constant firing, comparable to a state of total war. After another month, the Vault of Secrets had been probed and cleared, but its defenders would not allow it to fall. Resistance held through, with the UF and Quintet Payotari Association entering a state of gridlock at the scene of conflict.

In the last stages of the Vault's Incident, UF forces slowly inched their way to the Eternal Battery. By then, a plan was created which would directly effect the battery by using focused EMP blasts, as well as extensive bombardment of the surrounding hull to let them in. After deeper planning and numerous brutal battles with the QPA military, the UF military placed effective EMPs all around the Eternal Battery, detonating them with an extreme amount of force. What followed was not a shutdown of the Vault, but instead a massive destabilization, which set off a meltdown in the Vault.

The UF forces, unaware of the meltdown, continued to board the Vault of Secrets. After a quick analysis of the power source, the offensive forces attempted to destroy it entirely. However, the Quintet Payotari Association sent extensive backup to the chambers, causing further gridlock and extending the conflict for several more weeks. The QPA was soon overwhelmed and, knowing a meltdown was imminent, largely fled the region. Content with their victory, UF generals ordered many artifacts to be removed for study. After several days, UF forces attempted to remove what they believed was an inert Eternal Battery. The battery, already unstable, experienced a catastrophic failure once tampered with, causing it and the Vault it was powering to explode.

The blast obliterated UF military forces in the region. Their ships, while powerful, could not stand the equivalent to a nova. Thaumic energy was released alongside heavy radiation. This energy would go out at near lightspeed, warping or destroying minds as it propagated across space. It would go on to kill a large number of individuals who would have otherwise survived the blast. Trillions of soldiers died as a result of the blast, which prompted immediate UF response.

QPA-UF Front (88,073 CE - 88,433 CE)

Post-Vault's Incident ( 88,073 CE - 88,116 CE)

The Quintet Payotari Association, interpreting the UF attack as an act of war, mobilized regional military. They intended to banish the UF and its allies and force them to sue for peace. Many artifacts salvaged from the Vault of Secrets, including several offensive weapons and life forms now known as the Celestial Plague, would define the war. The Celestial Plague was intended to execute offensive attacks against the UF, hopefully forcing them out of the Via Aylathiya permanently.

The president of the UF immediately fired the generals for acting aggressively towards the QPA. Once he learned of the mobilization of QPA forces against military bases and colonies, he requested the Congress to declare war on the QPA. The Congress initially refused, mostly because a declaration of war would necessarily involve other member nations in the Confederacy of Borealis. They only authorized limited military action necessary to defend UF military assets until negotiations could take place.

As both sides sent extended forces to the site of the Vault's Incident, more fronts opened up as the Quintet Payotari Association used their entire military to attack UF positions. While civilian colonists were generally spared, large numbers died to the indiscriminate rampage of the Celestial Plague. As the Plague made its way to new systems, it would prove to be the deadliest factor in the war. It would also prove to be the most important aspect. UF ships carried the plague from Orithiya to Borealis Arm in 88,113 CE. At once, it began propagating rapidly across the galaxy, causing large numbers of civilians casualties. The Confederacy of Borealis, upon learning of the Plague's origin, decided to attack action of its own against the plague. It carried out various assaults on the facilities responsible for experimenting with the plague. In response, the QPA officially declared war on the Confederacy of Borealis as well.

The War of the Ancients was raging full force by 88,115 CE, as the QPA and the greater Confederacy were gearing up to higher conflict with deeper tensions. The earliest battles took place mostly around UF possessions. In the mean time, the Quintet Payotari Association was evaluating the recovered artifacts from the Vault of Secrets, and hastily improved on the Celestial Plague, which ushered several bouts of innovation in biotechnology and self replicating machines. The QPA released this newly improved Celestial Plague mere decades after the true war. It ravaged vast swathes of space, causing damage to thousands of Federation-affiliated systems. Several decades passed with intermittent skirmishes and battles. It would help the Quintet Payotari Association move towards its goal of permanently removing Confederate influence from their galaxy.

Escalation (88,116 CE - 88,221 CE)

Further escalation of the War of the Ancients was started by the Quintet Payotari Association, as they began to relentlessly send waves of the Celestial Plague to the Confederacy. At this point, the war had made its rounds all across the Local Universe, with many major nations taking notice and launching their own campaigns against the Quintet Payotari Association. Most notably, the Commonwealth created a massive blockade near their borders, but expressed no hostilities beyond that point. The months following the blockade saw some major incidents near key UF wormhole gates. These spawned a large panic among the leadership of both sides. They feared a war in which the fighting took place in or near populated systems. Their fears soon became realized as further mobilization of the military forces saw the rise of 'Total War'.

After successfully establishing itself near the UFSS, the QPA wasted no time deploying more of the Celestial Plague. The Plague had been exceptionally successful in propagating, so much so that over a dozen inhabited systems experienced large numbers of casualties. It was the first time in the war that major systems hosted significant battles. Every battle thus far had been UF forces, backed by other member states, fighting off vast amounts of the Celestial Plague. QPA war vessels were in short supply at the start of the war, forcing them to rely on the Plague almost entirely.

Deeper understanding of ancient artifacts led the Quintet Payotari Association to augment the Celestial Plague further, allowing for even faster spreading and a heightened ruthlessness. They also sent a prominent capital ship, the PWV Reckoning, to capture various more wormholes within not only the UF but the wider Confederacy. After capturing several important wormholes, the QPA used them to send various battles drones into Borealis Arm. In particular, Sagittarium bared the brunt of the assault, causing it to take the war seriously. At once, it began mobilizing its military, the premier military force of the galaxy reawakening after millennia of slumber.

Indiscriminate Plague Attacks

Vessels from both Via Aylathiya and Ventemir, began being attacked by the Celestial Plague as well. In 88,223 CE, the State of Tenshi discovered that a large amount of the Celestial Plague had been deployed within Ventemir. In response, they immediately joined the Confederacy in aiding of its mitigation. Other nations, such as Drusidia and the Un'oit Collective, also had no choice but to side with the Confederacy in dealing with the Celestial Plague. The QPA, while never declaring war on nations other the Confederacy, refused to alter their deployment of the Celestial Plague, pushing other nations closer to the Confederacy.

Stalemate (88,223 CE - 88,227 CE)

Several more decades of this gritty warfare would give way to a sort of gridlock. Defenses on both sides became more permanent, and as a result there were reports of numerous stealth operations and other, more harmless wars. The QPA also moved much of its bulk to defend wormhole gates and hubs, which made stealth operations much easier to conduct. This period would not be seen as long-lasting either, as both the Confederate and QPA sides were quickly gearing up.

Despite the core worlds of the Confederacy remaining largely safe, the Celestial Plague had devastated border regions. Travel within the galaxy had been restricted to basic FTL as every hyperlane became untraversable. The UF had to devote large amounts of resources to evacuating civilians and securing major worlds while abandoning large portions of the galaxy. The UF had no choice but to destroy several wormholes to prevent the Plague from spreading any further.

Amaranthian Heist (88,221 CE)

Main Article: Amaranthian Heist

The Battle of Sekhmet (88,112 CE - 88,131 CE)

Main Article: The Battle of Sekhmet

The Battle of Sekhmet, while relatively short, was one of the largest and most important battles in the War of the Ancients. Large numbers of immigrants and refugees fled to Sagittarium during the War. Being in the center of the galaxy, it remained relatively untouched during the start of the war. Its population exploded. In particular, Sekhmet, an ecumenopolis under the control of Sagittarium, was growing rapidly. The Sagittarian government intentionally sent refugees to this world, a world rich in production centers for materiel, to essentially act as shields. The QPA would either leave the planet alone or attack it and ruin their image while boosting morale among Sagittarian troops.

The QPA decided to attack Sekhmet regardless of any civilians present. They released large amounts of Celestial Plague into the area. The planet naturally had a large number of ships defending it, most of them were newly constructed on Sekhmet itself. They prevented all of the plague from getting onto the planet but not without causing large amounts of debris to rain down onto the surface of the planet. Large portions of the population died to falling material or stray shots. Residential structures absorbed most of the blow while the much deeper and more well-protected production facilities remained unscathed.

The battle continued, the QPA doing everything they could to destroy the production facilities of Sekhmet. While many were destroyed, they did far more to civilians than they did to the facilities themselves. Using footage and death statistics, Sagittarium started broadcasting the destruction across the galaxy. "All for one station?" was the signature slogan used to promote the idea of the brutality of the QPA. As Sagittarium mined the war for propaganda, and the facilities continued building ships to protect the planet from invading forces, taking the planet would prove impossible.

The Quintet Payotari Association eventually stopped the battle. They tried to accuse Sagittarium of using civilians as shields, but their accusation would only be echoed by a handful of neutral nations with no stake in the war. If they completely destroyed the planet they would have likely caused more nations to become hostile to them. For the sake of their image, they stopped the battle in 88,131 CE. Sagittarium would symbolically use ships built on Sekhmet in special operation units for the remainder of the war. The rest of the aforementioned region, while occasionally being brought under spurs and quick skirmishes, remained under a state of gridlock until the war ended.

Heightened Celestial Plague (88,226 CE - 88,248 CE)

Both sides had been almost equal throughout the war. The scales tipped massively into the Quintet Payotari Association's favor as it unleashed the new version of the Celestial Plague across the galaxy en masse. This newly improved plague was largely held back at first, however, it soon began overrunning systems across Borealis Arm. The death toll, remaining below the septillion mark up until this point finally reached it in 88,227 CE. In that same year, the UF completely pulled out of Orithiya, abandoning their colonies to reinforce positions in Via Aylathiya.

Chaos gripped Via Aylathiya as migration never before seen took place. Entire systems depopulated as their inhabitants fled the incoming attacks by the Plague. The military was stretched too thin to defend every world. The only worlds to experience sure protection were core worlds inhabited since antiquity. These worlds experienced a refugee crisis as even with their impressive production outputs, they could not house the refugees in post-scarcity conditions. It was so bad that the Commonwealth of United Economic Nations, took notice of the issues. They began to impose blockades, sanctions, and small but frightening threats to the Quintet Payotari Association.

Other nations also imposed sanctions. Despite this, they did little to not deter the QPA. In 88,233 CE, the QPA requested a conditional surrender from the Confederacy. It would call off the Plague if they ceded Ventemir as well as pay reparations. The Confederacy immediately saw this as a great threat. Not only that but the Ventemir galaxy was not under the control of a Confederate member state. It was under the control of the State of Tenshi. Tenshi immediately declared war, however, this would do little to turn the tide of the war. Out of options, the Confederacy had the nations of the of the Intergalactic Council to assess the situation. The Confederate general, Donatus Shuker, in various speeches and diplomatic meetings, managed to convince the Commonwealth of United Economic Nations, Drusidia, and Amme to join the conflict against the QPA. Other nations began pledging support to the Confederacy in the form of weapons or loans.

With the thought of total war hanging in the air, the Confederacy stood heavily concerned as the Celestial Plague continued to ravage populated areas. The full force of the Federate military was slowly dispatched to the site of attack, but it would prove to be difficult. This was because many hyperlanes and wormhole gateways were forcefully closed, to prevent any QPA advancement. This bought both sides some time for the building of defense and strategy. It was also a critical moment in the fields of Beatrix, which began to match POLIKY in terms of storage space and processing power. Over a crushing decade of gearing for a second push, the Commonwealth decided to step in once and for all.

Early International Intervention (88,248 CE - ____ CE)

CUEN Axis

Via Aylathiyan Axis

During the meeting of the Intergalactic Council, two nations of Borealis Arm, Drusidia and Amme, both officially declared war on the QPA. They were both in good terms with the Confederacy and were culturally very similar to Sagittarium. These two nations, on their own, would not be a threat to the QPA. Knowing this, the began construction of a superweapon known as Vignette. This weapon was mostly made out of ancient artifacts connected with a biological supercomputer coordinating them. Construction would take until only a decade before the end of the war.

Unable to stage much of an offensive without their superweapon, Drusidia and Amme supported their allies with ships and, mostly, soldiers. While not nearly as helpful as the CUEN, the two would prove indispensable in several battles. Their joining also introduced Magi into the conflict. Beforehand, the nations battling were not particularly interested in Magi as a concept, however, as resources grew thin, this class of soldiers would prove valuable. Their involvement would change modern warfare forever.

Aftermath

Impact

The War of the Ancients
QPA Flag.png
Organizations
Quintet Payotari Association Confederacy of Borealis Greater Martial Consilium Sedrua Commonwealth of United Economic Nations Sydiah's Paragons
Technology
Battles
Vault's Incident Amaranthian Heist
People
Vurilia Jutopati Donatus Shuker Apharos Strizotvia Beatrix
Locations
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