The Legacy of Delor is a spacefaring nation located at the south-eastern end of the Known Galaxy.
The first species of the Legacy, the volun, developed from a prey species on the world of Forjar, with their ancestors fending off scores of predators until they were capable of utilizing tools, and a heavily combatitive culture arose out of the necessity of defending against natural threats. For several thousands of years the Volun developed into a a widespread society on their world, eventually reaching the late iron age. During this time, in 2440, invaders from the skies landed on their planet, and began mining their resources. The local clans mounted all of their warriors in a show of tremendous force in order to repel the invaders, only to be laughably innefective against their space-age technology. This marked the beginning of the relationship between the two species as the volun were taken under the wing of the sarken, and promised the chance to fight countless battles on worlds beyond the stars. By 2470, enough volun had been integrated into the sarken military to begin their campaign against the rest of the known galaxy.
The first alien race the sarken pointed them at were the kakkon. Over the course of the next two and a half decades, the volun were unleashed against the kakkon, first by pushing them off of conquered worlds, then spreading to the hives themselves. Their physiologies were suited for long campaigns, allowing them to fight unhindered on the kakkon's worlds as they headed deep into their hives. When the kakkon were finally broken, the volun returned to the old ways, focusing on gaining dominance of their newly-conquered worlds. However, after having gotten a taste of conquering worlds, they longed to once again test their mettle against the galaxy, rather than against their own kin. Their wish was granted quickly, as the sarken turned against the Mugsoon Kingdom, and the volun were once againt able to prove themselves against warriors from other stars. After the jiptohr came the dzäwenid, whose united clans proved to be another great challenge.
After having conquered all of the spaceflight capable species known to the Sarken, there was a decades-long period of recovery and integration. During this time the volun settled into their new worlds and established infrastructures, but always with the thought in the back of their mind that this would only last until they found the next species in the galaxy to conquer. They once again were given the opportunity to prove themselves when the sarken discovered the planet Astara, populated by the pre-FTL airoth. However, with their primitive technology, limited population, and agrarian ways, the invasion became a bloodbath instead. Many volun grew disillusioned with the sarken for making their warriors into nothing more than butchers. This marked the start of the Volun Uprising, where the fleets used against Astara were turned back against their Sarken creators. This new government was declared the Legacy of Delor, in honor of their greatest culture hero.
After the Dark Age, the Legacy was involved in various border skirmishes with the Jiptohr Empire and Bolaemia Bureaucracy. The relationship between the Sarken Hegemony and Legacy were slowly repaired during this period of time, with the two nations eventually resolidifying their connections to each other. As the centuries went on, many Jiptohr immigrated to the Legacy, while Bolaemian relations soured and the two nations came to blows in several conflicts.
In 3320, shortly after the Bolaemia Bureaucracy and Jiptohr Empire became entangled in the Expansion War, the Legacy allied themselves with the Sarken Hegemony for a rapid invasion of Triple Alliance space. All seven of the Alliance's worlds found themselves under siege as the two nations moved into the worlds of Niata and Hahio, establishing footholds. By the time the Triple Alliance fleets managed to push hard enough to reach their occupied worlds, they had been reinforced and secured. After several years of hard fighting, both worlds were annexed and brought under the control of the two nations, with the Sarken taking Niata and Legacy claiming Hahio. A century later, while the rest of their neighbors were occupied with the Resurgence War, the Legacy again invaded the Triple Alliance, this time only targeting the world of Beluru and and reinforcing it immensely. After another long campaign, the Triple Alliance was forced to withdraw while the Legacy tended to its new world. In the decades following the Resurgence War, in no small part due to the public desires of their Jiptohri citizens, the Legacy was involved in several small disputes with the Bureaucracy, under the guise of objecting to the Bolaemian treatment of the gzydeotmid. During this period of time, millions of Gzydeotmid were allowed to immigrate and be absorbed into the Legacy, with many moving to Hahio and other less-developed worlds.
Most recently, during the Freedom War, the Legacy allied with the Jiptohr Empire for a total invasion of the Bolaemia Bureaucracy. Hitting several fronts at once, and quickly neutralizing Tredmoi, the two nations managed to branch out rapidly. Capitalizing on the inability of most neighboring nations to assist the Bureaucracy due to the situation in Kaladia, the Legacy and Empire were able to occupy most of the Bureau's worlds. However, once the Freedom War was resolved, a coalition of several nations, including the Triple Alliance, United Stars, Nation of the Zehir, Kingdom of Knotar, and Izeran Empire came to the aid of the Bolaemians. Overextended against the united front, the Legacy and Jiptohr were ultimately forced to withdraw to prevent disaster, ending the occupation of Bolaemia.
The Legacy government is a clan-based religious military dictatorship. Clusters of families will tend to form into herds, with the group being referred to as a blood pack, indicating that although they may not all share the same blood, they are willing to shed it for each other. The leaders of each family determine who is the leader of their blood pack. The blood pack leader's family elects a new family head, and then swears a blood oath to fight for the betterment of his pack. Clans are formed by large groups of blood packs, with the leader of each blood pack having a say in who is the leader of the clan. Just as with blood pack leadership, when someone is selected as leader of a clan, they swear an oath in blood to fight for their clan. This hierarchy continues until it reaches a planetary leader, equivalent to a planetary governor. These governors in turn select the leader of their nation, who is known as the Legend of Delor.
In the Legacy, individuals who exemplify aspects of Delor are known as Legends, with each Legend representing a single virtue. The exception is the leader of the Legacy, the Legend of Delor, who instead of exemplifying a single aspect of Delor, best embodies the sum of his virtues. There are a few dozen Legends, with many of the more well known ones being government officials, such as the Legend of Vengeance, who is responsible for the military, the Legend of Wealth, who oversees the economy, and the like. Less prominent virtues are held by correspondingly less prominent Legends, who are more akin to local celebrities or princes. These titles are not inherited, instead being appointed by Champions, with the exception being the Legend of Delor. In the rare event where there are insufficient Legends to select new Legends, the Clan leader of the previous Legend votes in their stead. Below the Legends are the Champions, who have exhibited strength of character in a respective virtue, and have been appointed by the Legend. It is the duty of every Legend to have a certain range of Champions appointed, and appointment lasts for a lifetime unless the Champion is found to have performed dishonorably. There are no defined requirements on age, experience, or status for being appointed, though certain virtues have inclinations for certain people. For instance, Champions of Wealth tend to be wealthy individuals, and Champions of Vengeance are typically soldiers of great accomplishment.
Due to the militaristic nature of the government, it places heavy emphasis on military strength. It is a legal requirement for all Legates to own weaponry and be prepared to defend their homes and their blood packs, and it is seen as a disgrace to be unarmed. The entirety of the volun population is always considered a reserve member of the military. For matters of defense and security, clans and planets are expected to maintain their own militia forces. Most Legacy military technology is ultimately of Sarken design or origin, due to having relied on Sarken technology for the entirety of their interstellar history, or from one of the other races in the hegemony. Capital ships are similar to those of the sarken, and feature a medley of laser and rail technology. Military tactics place heavy emphasis on the natural proficiency of volun at using boarding craft. Their spacefighter craft are slower and less maneuverable than others, as they are designed to also operate as aircraft and are equipped with more armor and weapons.
An oddity of volun infantry combat is the extensive use of animals. Army infantry groups are supported by savage animals trained for the purpose of warfare. Due to their natural strength and durability, the volun beasts of war can be extremely vicious and hearty predators, capable of biting through heavy armor and using their sheer mass to break up enemy formations. As a result of extensive Sarken genetic engineering over past millennium, beasts employed in the Volun army are especially vicious, durable, and resistant to chemical and biological agents. This practice is a holdover from their ancient warfare techniques - as volun are too heavy to effectively make use of mounted units, much more effort was put into the domestication of beasts and maturing the techniques of training them for battle. The most iconic beast of war is the irlava, which resembles a metallic cross between a bear and a komodo dragon. Shoulder and back-mounted weaponry are commonplace, taking advantage of the stability provided by volun bulkiness.
Volun have to consume both iron-based compounds for nutrition, and carbon-based compounds for combustible energy, giving them a complex diet. Institutionalized education is nearly nonexistent among volun in the Legacy, with most learning happening on-the-job as a form of apprenticeship. Although it is mandatory to carry a weapon and every volun is a warrior of the military, it is not socially unacceptable for a volun to offer the labor of his mind to the Legacy. People such as engineers, doctors, historians, and scientists are considered Warriors of the Mind, and are seen as performing duties that allow the Legacy to grow. Because the sarken rapidly introduced the aspects of modern infrastructure, volun culture adapted to allow for warriors to learn these new sciences and arts, pass them on to their children, and in doing so make all of the volun strong.
The volun typically do not use capital punishment outside of the battlefield, instead preferring to place criminals into labor camps, where they are disgraced by being stripped of their weaponry, and then forced to work until their debt is paid off. In cases where multiple lifetime sentences are required, immediate family members are made to work off the additional time. After the sentence is finished, the individual's weapons are returned to them and they are reinstated as a volun. Battlefields and war zones tend to be the only places where executions are utilized, due to the unique circumstances and severity of betrayal, cowardice, and other such crimes, combined with the need for expediency. In the situation where a battlefield execution is required, the preferred method is the breaking of limbs and submerging in a body of water, but in situations where time is of the utmost essence, gunshots are permissible.
The majority species of the Legacy is the volun. An iron-based species from the plant Forjar that reproduces asexually, they are the species that created the Legacy. Due to the accepting nature of the volun-derived religion and government, as well as the strong encouragement of immigration, there are several other species with large populations. The largest of these populations is the Jiptohr, which is attributed to over a thousand years of contact between the Legacy and the Jiptohr Empire. The Gzydeotmid, Tidanel, Fasir, and Aht have significantly sized populations as well.
Volun life follows a slow cycle, as days on their homeworld last approximately 163 hours. Volun sleep for periods of nearly fifty hours, followed by nearly five standard days of activity. Their two most important meals are breakfast and dinner, as they must fill themselves up with several days of food for dinner before sleeping, and breakfast must replenish everything they consumed in their sleep.
In volun society, family is the most important relationship. As children share knowledge of their father's lifetime, brothers and their fathers are extremely close to each other, while uncles and cousins are still close, albeit slightly less so. Government and religion are intermingled, with the supreme leaders of the volun being considered akin to demigods, and the assorted Legends and Champions being living heroes.
In a volun funeral ceremony, the body of the deceased is melted down in a ceremonial furnace, and then forged into the a strong iron alloy used to create weapons for his children, brothers, or other close friends. These weapons are believed to possess the spirit of the deceased, and are said to bind the spirit to the soul of the one who wields it. Weapons made in this manner are called ravanaga and gain the honorable prefix of rava-, which loosely translates as legend or legendary. Thus, a dagorath made in this manner would be known as a ravadagorath, while a laerath would be dubbed a ravalaerath. As a volun ages and his father, brothers, friends, and even sons perish, he builds up a collection of these ravanaga. When he dies, the weapons that were not considered significant enough to merit bequeathing to someone in his will are melted down with him. In this way, a volun is said to be carrying the strength of his ancestors, all the way back to Delor himself. A common funeral rite roughly translates as "You are dead now. But I will make your blood my steel, your will shall be my blade, and your soul will guide me. I carry you with me into battle until my own body fails, and my sons must carry on for me. You are dead now, but I will make you immortal."
Because of this, a volun's weapon is considered an extension of his own soul, and "rath" is the volun word most commonly used to describe both "soul" and "changing weapon", referring to the malleability of one's soul to fit many ravanaga. It is considered the ultimate sin to lose one's soul, and those that do so are made outcasts. There are only two ways to revert this status. The most common method is to retrieve their soul, which is done by finding one's lost weapon. If that is not possible, then an outcase volun must live without help from other volun for twenty-seven (Forjar) years. If the volun can survive this period of time he is allowed to return to his clan and blood pack. This is due to the belief that they were found worth enough to have their soul return to them. There are two personal weapons with a greater cultural significance to the Legacy than all others, the dagorath and the laerath.
In cases of dismemberment, while some volun will simply replace them with a mechanical prosthetic limb, the far more socially acceptable replacement limb is a mounted weapon with a simple prosthetic hand. By doing so, a volun ensures that he is never without his weapon. Additionally, for ravanaga that are integrated into the body this way, a volun can have the souls of his ancestors welded to his body. Body markings are also popular, with volun etching meaningful patterns into this armor, and other species tattooing them.
The most common form of entertainment in the Legacy is physical competition, which manifests in countless forms, including bloodsports. The most popular of these is the, which resembles a combination of gladiatorial combat and promotional events. Animal fighting is also immensely popular. Due to their inability to swim, water sports are limited, and bear little to know resemblance to those in the rest of the galaxy. Volun water sports usually resemble slow-paced versions of field sports that are simply played underwater.
An integral part of Legacy society is their religion, Delorism. The namesake of the Legacy, Delor, is the mythological founder who united the volun, established laws, promoted technological advancement, and defeated many enemies in order to shape the volun into people instead of animals.
Clan and Blood Pack leaders are responsible for determining when volun are permitted to have children, in order to prevent overpopulating and conserve their local resources. It is the responsibility of the leadership to ensure that each bloodline has at least one heir, and tend to use a rotating cycle to determine who is allowed to have a child that year. Clans and Blood Packs that are incapable of meeting the needs of their members may sometimes find themselves transfering members. While not uncommon, and not dishonorable, this practice of having a clan "adopt" other members does tend to carry a negative connotation, as it means the originating clan was incapable of tending to its own. Clans are also responsible for maintaining their own collection of beasts.
The Legacy controls 13 inhabited systems, the majority of which were taken in various conquests. Their homeworld, Forjar, is a moon of the gas giant Malque in the SYSTEMNAME system. Two systems, containing the worlds of Hahio and Beluru, were annexed from the Triple Alliance within the last few hundred years. The volun homeworld, Forjar, is a moon of the gas giant Malque. It is tidally locked, and as a result Malque is always visible from the near side of Forjar. It has a high concentration of metals in its crust, resulting in the iron-based lifeforms that reside on it. Deserts are locations of high volcanic activity, while forests and jungles tend to be short, with even the tallest trees only reaching fifty meters. Countless ruins are scattered across the planet, fortresses of stone and iron from times long gone by.
The majority of the Legacy population is made up of the volun species, but has a significant mix of other species as well. These non-volun populations are concentrated on their most recently-conquered planets, as they are the only ones with atmospheres they can breath on. The population of the Legacy is just under 18 billion, consisting of 12 billion volun, 2.4 billion Jiptohr, 1.9 billion Triple Alliance species, 700 million gzydeotmid, and a billion other individuals of other assorted species. The majority of members of the Legacy are Delorens, with only remnants of older religions remaining on Beluru.
- The volun, and by extension the Legacy, use the base-three number system.
- Because they lack true vocal cords, instead using controlled bursts of air from their lungs, the volun are incapable of whispering. Even at minimal volume, it sounds as if a volun is shouting.
- The literal translation of Forjar is "place of ultimate suffering". Due to the lack of a Deloren concept of hell, when such locations have to be translated Forjar is used as a stand-in.