Delta Dust: Axis Report 2225

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Welcome to the Constance, an Axis Q-ship operating as a tramp freighter in the Verge. Her crew is a motley collection of ex-Union filibusters out to forment uprisings, harass enemies of the state, acquire good for Axis and make a profit doing so.

Don't fuck up, because nobody's coming to save you.


The Constance

Built two decades ago as a Handymax mixed-cargo freighter and originally named the GRV (Gravity-Resist Vessel) Starwise Prince.


The Great Mutiny

It is seven years since the end of the Verge War, seven years since the death of General Granville and seven years since the establishment of Axis on the world of Zagros.

The Verge War laid bare faultlines in the Hampshire warfighting effort and military establishment; the privately-operated and Senate-backed Star Guard and the 'regular' Hampshire Aerospace Force were often working at cross-purposes. Strategies were often discordant and rife with political infighting, a situation that only got worse as the war put more of a strain on Hampshire. This came to a climax when the well-respected General Granville publically came out against the conduct of the war. Coming as it did on the heels of several embarassing retreats and the revelation that secret diplomacy had been ongoing in an attempt to exit the war, this rocked the capital and the President of Hampshire immediately ordered Granville court-martialled. Before this could happen he was dead by his own service sidearm, taking his own life rather than be pulled through the mud.

This shocking turn of events galvanized action among the regular forces, most notably Lt General Zeremeyer - Granville's protege since the Shore War - who took immediate action. Rejecting orders he called for a retreat out of Hampshire space to leave those who had allegedly betrayed the soldiery. In the end, half of the Hampshire home fleet ended up following Zeremeyer out of Union space and to the peripheral world of Zagros.

Zagros

A dusty 'Super-Mars' world in the outer Verge, Zagros was settled in the early to mid 22nd century by Iranian nationals, one of many such marginal or remote worlds settled by less influential nations, often with substantial corporate cooperation. Identified (like many other habitable and semi-habitable worlds) as having extractable Delta Dust, this became an export paying for much of the colonial infrastructure.

The Breakdown cut Zagros off for several decades, leading to a period of stringent birth rate control, autarky and general hardship. Not a particularly developed world as of the breakdown, the inhabitants of Zagros could not do things such as engineer (or import) superior crops suited for cultivation in the limited arable land available. That needed to wait for recontact, done not by ships from the core worlds but by ones from the recently constituted Zodiac Union. Prosperous, advanced and magnimous in the afterglow of the Shore War, the Union provided both modern crops and industrial machinery which led to an elimination of the longstanding population restrictions and a subsequent baby boom. Thus began the association of Zagros with the Union.

Too far for any meaningful political alignment, Zagros nonetheless became a common port of call for Union ships as regular FTL travel was reestablished. This state of affairs persisted for a decade, until the Verge War erupted. While a distinctly secondary theatre, Zagros and region came to absorb an unexpectedly large amount of logistical attention on both the Union side and the Core side as both factions poured resources in to avoid either achieving an upper hand and 'breaking out'. This set the stage for the arrival of warships from the Great Mutiny.

Axis

Nicknamed 'Axis', Zagros under postwar military control is an isolated state. The post-recontact population boom has filled the world with youths who have been heavily indocrinated with a decade of propaganda and the ex-Union soldiers and civilians are all loyal to the Rabani-Zeremeyer government - those that were not were mostly repatriated soon after cessation of hostilities. Most of these have also intermarried into the greater Zagros population - with undouted long-term effects for Zagros' formerly mostly (near-)baseline gene pool.

In general, only those who are known to be loyal to Axis Zagros and its ideals are allowed outside of the solar system, making it easy to maintain media and memetic isolation.