Infinitum: Beginnings

The solar system where we begun is Sol. Nine planets, an asteroid belt, lots of moons, and a single inhabitable planet - Earth. Earth, the third rock from the Sun: humanities home. It’s where we began… and we’re never going back. It’s a place we’ll never see again, lost to time and already but a memory for most. And what happened to Terra that we could never go back? Twenty-five years after the first Arc Ship, Sol’s one and only jumpnode closed. We were lucky. A few decades late, and humanity may have never reached the stars.

We left on the Arcs. Humanities greatest achievement, in our thousands of years of history. Ships larger than cities, carrying humanities population in hibernation, waiting to arrive on new planets and to go forth and multiply.

I was one of them, you know. I was only twenty-five when I left Earth on the Dementer. Such a long time ago… But I was one of the first, one of the first billion humans to reach the heavens, boldly going where no man had gone before. heh …You kids wouldn’t remember that, but there was a time when we would dream of the heavens, thinking of what it would be like to go to space, to find aliens and make war and peace with them. But those were very different times.

So our Arcs plummeted though space, punching though the ‘nodes with the finesse of a drunken American. And then we found the inhabitable planets, and started to find Life. Oh, that was a shock to some people! Animal and plant life, with even more variation than Earth ever had. And so we did what humanity does best. Claim, colonize, spread, advance. Some would say infect. Sentient life is brilliantly effective at expanding.

And the Arc’s helped us to do that very efficiently. Able to cross systems in days, and jump across almost infinite amounts of our universe with the aid of the jumpnodes. We found ourselves in sections of the universe that we had never seen, that were untouched by man - for a short time, anyway.

But like always, we were still followed by disaster. The third arc, the Arc Ship Titania, may have been humanities greatest ever loss. It came out of it’s second jump and was hit by a small moon. Nothing special, no last rally against a honorable enemy, nothing they could do to save themselves from destruction. Titania’s still out there, somewhere. Near the Origin, theres a system with a few small planets and moons - one of them has a beautiful sparkling atmosphere. We call it Splendor.

Before Titania hit, Splendor had no atmosphere. Now, it has a sky of twisted metal and plastic, debris from the Arc. It’s the biggest human graveyard in history.

And a few years after that, we lost the Eidolon. They decided that they could not agree with our limits on weaponry, AI and bio-modification, the technologys that made us leave Earth behind. They forgot what those things had done to humanity before. The forgot the destruction that they caused. We no longer know what Eidolon’s goals are. They advance far more aggressively than we did, tearing planets for resources and continuing to live in space. We can only hope they never turn on us.

Callista was the fourth Arc to leave Sol. They were careful, not wanting to fall to disaster. And they didn’t - but they did discover disaster. Their scientists saw what our jumpdrives were doing to the nodes. We saw the fluctuation in the nodes far too late, and realized that our drives made them unstable. Having something punch though you at almost instantaneous speed will damage anything. We have far better technology now, and can traverse the jumps far more safely. But we didn’t have this before many of the nodes closed from our older, more destructive drives.

And thats the second reason we can’t ever see Sol again. We lost it.

Even if the node reopened, we have no idea where it could be. The few systems that make up the Origin? We can’t ever get back to them either. I say ‘we’ can never get back to Sol, and the Origin. But… not all of us left. The final Arc Ship, Absenti. It never left. Neither did any of those who stayed on Earth and the moon colonies, the crazies that thought we could ever renew Earth, after what we did to it. We may never know what happened to them now. Maybe they’re actually terraforming Earth. Maybe they could have found another jumpnode, and left the system to another place. Or they all died. Who knows?