Between 2160 and 2190, almost a hundred new habitats were built. The original five moved from system to system and constructed them with locally sourced materials. Many of the original miners from Rasselhague formed the early pioneers and there was a brief period where star systems welcomed the newly independent habitats into their space as they knew that they would soon have a large supply of cheap ore and other materials and soon be rid of many of their own malcontents. It wasn’t long though before many habitats developed reputations for being safe havens for brigands, pirates and other lawless individuals and plenty of system authorities were unwilling to take a risk on dealing with any habitat.
Until the mid 2190s, there was no cohesive government nor central identity to the free floating habitats. But in response to ever escalating crackdowns from both the IP3 and UNM in 2194 ninety two habitats came together in the system of Adhil on the edge of human inhabited space to sign the Treaty of Free Association officially forming the Void Born Union. It would take another seven years for either of the other major powers to actually recognise the newly founded power, and such recognition would be hard won.
Even before the ink was dry, the member-habitats of the VBU launched a coordinated attack on dozens of IP3 and VBU controlled worlds across the breadth of human inhabited space as the opening salvo of what would be known as the Void War. Whilst their antagonists had a clear technological advantage, the VBU had resources on their side. Almost all VBU ships were descended from those early mining vessels and were cheap to build. The AWE system facilitated extreme hit and run tactics and a unity of vision held the VBU together where there opponents had become bloated and stagnant.
A ceasefire was declared in 2201 in the treaty of Bernard’s Star, which gave official recognition to the VBU and promised increased rights for their member habitats on the proviso that they did more to control their criminal elements. Whilst the war had been kind to no party, it had served to push more habitats to the VBU cause and by 2210 there were single digit numbers of truly independent habitats whilst the VBU numbered in the hundreds.
Following the ceasefire, outright war between the VBU and the other factions was all but unheard of, but skirmishes between individual groups and planetary governments wasn’t uncommon.
Continue reading The Final Frontier.