Starmap

The expanse of the Three-twelve.  A maze of twisty passages, all alike.  Three hundred and twelve tiny islands of light in the dark fabric of limitless space.  Selecting the map below to opens an interactive version and provides access to far greater detail.  Mousewheel to zoom.  Click nodes to learn more about each stellar system.

Glossary

Listing of unique term used throughout the series.  This list intends to represent the most authoritative version available at any given time.  Therefore, please use the contact form on the communications page to suggest possible additions.

Alert Conditions

A color-code system used for communicating the source of danger internally to the crew. An alert condition of Green signifies “All Clear” or “Normal Operations.” Blue indicates “Environmental Hazard,” while Amber and Red communicates “Prepare for Battle” and “Battle Engaged” respectively. A Black condition stands for “Hostiles on Board.”

Ancients

The “fabled” ancient human empire extending throughout the local spiral arm of the Milky Way galaxy. Some argue that it only existed inside the Three-twelve, others say it is still there but out-of-reach, and still others believe the fable of the “Great Plague” that destroyed it. Also known as the Imperium. See Earth.

Armor Class

A unit value derived from the protective material’s resiliency against penetration over time using a single 15kW laser emitter at 100 meters in vacuum. Note that this rating system becomes problematic when used to measure ablative-coatings. A ship rating may include either a series of three numeric values to rate the strength of fore, side, and aft separately or employ a composite average.

One problem with the rating system involves the fact that materials with identical ratings may react to kinetic weaponry with vastly differing results. For example, ceramic-cladding offers excellent protection from directed energy weapons such as lasers, but little to no protection against rail-driven mass casters.

Hybrids of plasticized minimum-conductance ceramics used on smaller vessels offer the best protection, but remain prohibitively expensive for the surface area of larger ships. The largest vessels generally use multiple layers of alternating materials.

These difficulties perennially spark debate between those seeking a new and better rating system and those unwilling to change for reasons of historical consistency. One small compromise has seen a letter designation of armor type placed after the rating value to identify Alloy (A), Ceramic (C), Ablative (B), and Hybrid (H).

Abbreviation: AC

Ascender

No reference found.

Battle Cruiser Class

Trades protection for speed and greater weaponry as compared to an obsoleted Heavy Cruiser class. Currently only two hulls in active service, due to some early incompatibilities in the five-section design. Bureau Naval shipyards have laid four additional keels, and have made appropriations for twenty-four ships total within the class.

Statistics: RG-12/Z-56/TZ-4/AC-12C/Paladin-12/Crew-156

Battle Mesh

A network of computers used by navies to allow coordination between attack drone flights. Each sub-node of a battle mesh system can control up to three drones. To synchronize forces between multiple ships requires an exchange of physical security tokens to prevent possible takeover of drones by an enemy via remote control.

Beanstalk

Also called a “space elevator.” A nanotube cable anchored to the surface of a planet extending into space past the point of equilibrium, where the rotational speed of the planet overcomes the gravitational pull for the counter-weight, thereby achieving a permanent fixed geostatic orbit. Due to the extreme rotational speed in the case of Merrigo, the overall beanstalk length need only measure two-hundred meters.

Bureaucracy

Officially named “Unified Congress of Democratic Worlds,” but also referred to as the “Bureau” or by the name of an individual bureau within the governmental system. Directly elected offices serve only as a general oversight to the nearly autonomous bureaus.

Cargo Rail Launcher

A technology similar to both a Railgun Mass Driver weapon used in naval warfare and the mag-lev train. With only the most moderate elevation, the rail launcher achieves escape velocity over a track of a few kilometers. The track length required depends upon the total mass of the planet, the resistance of an atmosphere, and other factors.

Claymore

An ancient Scottish sword, from a possibly mythological time before the isolation of the Three-twelve. See Ancients and Earth.

Corvette Class

Small fast-transfer ships lightly armed and armored with limited tactical and no strategic capabilities.

Statistics:  Z-8/AC-2C/Crew-12

Cruiser Class

Uniquely balanced class, with four hull sections and the added benefit of hybrid armor cladding. The hybrid armor provides exceptional protection against most types of weaponry; however, the expense of the materials caused the Bureau of the Navy to abandon plans for a larger fleet.

Statistics: RG-8/Z-44/TZ-2/AC-12H/Paladin-9/Crew-70

Destroyer Class

Called the “backbone” of the fleet, Destroyers mount tactical weaponry only, making them effective in ship-to-ship conflict, while keeping cost and shipyard production times low. Three hull sections make up the Destroyer class design.

Statistics: RG-4/Z-16/AC-6B/Paladin-6/Crew-36

Directorate

Formally called “Kholarian Directorate.” The Kholar Supreme High Council rules the Directorate holdings with authority from the governmental seat located on the planet Klausse, in the Rotanev system. While not officially hereditary, the ruling power of the High Council generally passes from parent to child.

Drone

Automated attack vessels launched by naval ships in combat, commonly called “Paladin” within the Bureaucracy. With no pilot to protect, drones may freely accelerate and turn at maximum velocities, and deliver their ordnance at optimum ranges. Individually dangerous, drones become devastating when operated in multiples and coordinated by shipboard battle network computers.

Earth

Also called Terra, the mythical home world of humankind. While some fringe groups hold out hope of an as-yet undiscovered starlink to the Sol system, most scholarly research falls into two primary categories. The majority tend to agree that “Earth” only exists as a group of semi-fictitious stories passed down throughout the generations, and that human life began any one of the many suitable planets within the Three-twelve itself. A small minority feels that Earth exists elsewhere entirely and some unknown force transported human life to exist within the Three-twelve for reasons now lost. See Starlink and Subcee.

Enclave

Mostly founded upon either religious, scholarly, or familiar lines, these small cloisters of people live in the unvalued border spaces between the Bureaucracy and the Directorate systems. While often only wishing to be left alone, they will sometimes make unexpected alliances with one another for mutual protection. The Bureaucracy officially denies the existence of enclaves. The Directorate, on the other hand, has declared enclaves outlaw and actively torments any unlucky enough to draw attention. See Freeworld.

Explorer

Individuals who defy scientific explanation, in that they apparently can detect starlinks without utilizing technology or instrumentation. This tiny group of individuals often roam the Three-twelve without affiliation to any government, except where they charter passage in return for the use of their talents, often piloting through intra-system links enabling ships to save weeks of subcee travel time. See Starlink, and Subcee.

Faire-gaellies

A strange wind gust that occurs on the planet Claremont, much loved by the inhabitants. The architecture of the chief city, Harper’s Belle, commonly includes large exterior musical instruments such as chimes, pipes, and flutes, to catch these sudden sharp breezes.

Faustinaur

A large predatory animal with an extremely dangerous and volatile nature from the planet Titanius, orbiting the star Merga. Humans living there hunted the beasts to extinction, accomplished only at great cost by utilizing a well-armored militaristic personnel carrier with large caliber mounted weaponry.

Fixups

Microscopic machines used to repair injuries from the inside out. They use chemical energy from the body itself to operate and replicate. When the repairs complete, the nanites begin disassembling themselves and pass from the host via the urinary tract. Fixups operate best in conjunction with medical computer direction, although they can perform simple life-saving repairs based upon their own limited internal programing. Also called Fixup Nanites. See Medipod.

Flail-tree

A curious plant form native to the planet Imboden, Tania Australis. The semi-aware organism attacks any movement within its reach with razor-like silicate fronds. The “tree” harvests any nutrients spilled by the flailing attack through its base, or motive “root” system.

Four-Seven, The

The Four-Seven was a large Bureau battlewagon infamously trapped and destroyed by Directorate forces in a section of starlinks known as the Hallway. All hands lost.

Frigate Class

A small vessel used in police action or in support of larger hulls. Designed to utilize only two hull sections, the frigate occupies a crucial position within any fleet, easy to produce and requiring few resources in personnel.

Statistics: Z-12/AC-3C/Paladin-3/Crew-18

Freeworld

Non-aligned planets, moons, and systems that survive within the unwanted areas of the Three-twelve. Freeworlds often, but not necessarily, host Enclaves.

Fusarc

A fusion arc reactor. The basic power plant of all Three-twelve technology, sometimes called a Shiva furnace.

Gravgen

A well-defined technology found throughout the Three-twelve that converts energy into artificial gravity, primarily used for weightless conditions. Also called “gravity generators.”

Grav-loop

A semi-circular ramp used for the convenience of human foot traffic to cross between two areas of divergent artificial gravity. Often configured so that the “loop” reorients those who transfer over it one-hundred and eighty degrees, thereby rendering the perceived direction of “up” as opposite from the starting position. See Gravgen.

Hailstone Cannon

A small, high-output, mass-driven cannon with multiple barrels in a rotary configuration. The Hailstone Cannon System majors on output rather than on pinpoint accuracy. Modern naval vessels usually employ Hailstone systems in drone defense only in cooperation with Laser Point Defense systems.

Abbreviation: HCS

Heavy Cruiser Class

Larger fusarc capacity and more mounted firepower differentiate the Heavy Cruiser from the smaller classes, the design employed four hull sections. Despite the additional power, Heavy Cruisers remain slow and inefficient with large demands for personnel to operate. This class has fallen on disuse after the advent of the Battle Cruiser.

Statistics: RG-8/Z-56/TZ-4/AC-21A/Paladin-9/Crew-138

Hyperspace

No reference found.

Kholarian
Lander

Small ships used to transfer personnel and materials between space-going objects, or between orbit and the surface of planets. Standard naval vessels mount at least one lander crèche per hull section.

Laser Point Defense

In terms of naval application, a Laser Point Defense system refers to mounted emplacements of twelve co-joined 15kW free-electron lasers. This arrangement results in a powerful destructive beam, albeit with a slow recovery time and short effective range. Used in concert with shipboard Hailstone Cannon Systems.

Abbreviation: LPD

Locusts

See Plague.

Mag-Lev Train

A electro-magnetic levitation railroad system using super-conductors that allow the carriages to make no contact with the rails themselves.

Medipod

An automatic chamber able to provide medical help to injured crew utilizing instant pharmaceutical synthesis and nanite machines. See Fixups.

Micropore

A material for the construction of pressure suits for human use in vacuum. Micropore suits have a characteristic softness and flexibility, which greatly adds to the comfort of the user. The tiny pores trap air bubbles within the fabric to maintain atmosphere, but evaporates moisture, such as perspiration, to the outside environment at a regulated rate.

Monocord

A deadline cable of extreme test strength. Suitable for use in vacuum, users often consider monocord as unbreakable, because of the very small failure rate of the lines. Manufactured as a derivative of the nanotube technology used in planetary beanstalks.

Paladin

The Bureau-specific term for space combat drones. See Drone.

Plague

The mythical disaster some claim destroyed the ancient Human Empire, or Imperium. Few facts, if any, regarding the alleged Plague remain to this day. Most published anthropologists and research journals tend to regard the concept as “fanciful.” See also Ancients and Earth.

Plasteel

An extremely resilient material used in construction and shipbuilding. While the name implies a metallurgical origin, working with the substance involves more casting than forging.

Railgun

A superconducting electro-magnetic weapon capable of accelerating masses many kilograms in size to high velocities, measured in meters per second.

Red Shain

The companion of Alshain (primary to Bureau planet Buena Vista home system of Bennett Adams) is a red dwarf star called Alshain B. An Explorer expedition traveled to Alshain B or “Old Red Shain” as the local inhabitants call it, twenty years before Bennett’s time because of an instinctive draw to that system. Marcus Adams, father to Bennett, served on this expedition. The strange energies found in the Alshain B system likely contributed to his early death.

Revite

A “revitalizer” injection. Makes an individual function for twelve-to-eighteen hours despite wounds or fatigue but takes a toll with a painful recovery that can last several days. Indicated for emergency use only.

Ring Bay

The drone launch bay aboard naval vessels, shaped like a disk wedged between sections of the ship. The ring bay includes a “ring-like” door, hence the name, that descends into the adjacent hull section to expose the spinner and drones to space. During maneuvers at high velocity, the closed ring door supports the structural integrity of the ship. See Spinner, Strongback, and Drone.

Scattergun

A small handgun using cartridges loaded with disc-shot. Since scattergun discs individually lack the power to puncture bulkhead, they commonly see use aboard space vessels for anti-personnel security purposes.

Spinner

The launching system developed to prevent the easy destruction of drones at release by nearby enemies. A spinner system throws drones at random tangents from the host. This differs from older systems launching through fixed-point tubes. The spinner hub surrounds the strongback passage of the ship. See Ring Bay, Strongback, and Drone.

A fracture point in the fabric of space and time, sometimes called a “wormhole,” that allows a connection to another point somewhere else. Extreme mass seems to create these fractures. Accordingly, starlinks coincide with stellar objects, with heavier stars apparently contributing to the existence of more links. See Subcee.

Strategic Laser

Terrestrial Laser, a powerful space-to-space or space-to-ground weapon, deuterium fluoride type. This weapon requires immense power to charge and suffers from a long recovery time.

Abbreviation: TZ

Strongback

The spine of a modern naval vessel, linking and supporting each section of the hull. Sometimes referred to as the “Central Corridor”, or the hollow strongback contains a passageway between the bow and the stern of the ship. It also anchors the central hub of the drone launching systems. See Spinner, Drone, and Ring Bay.

Subcee

Any type of drive used to navigate between starlinks. As the name indicates, subcee drives develop velocities unusable for achieving the speed of light, or “C”, and would require decades or more to cross the distances between stars. See Starlink.

Tactical Laser

Medium-ranged weapon based upon hydrogen fluoride, not suitable for ground targets.

Abbreviation: Z

Unified Congress of Democratic Worlds

Also known as UCDW. See Bureaucracy.

Verata Serum

A drug that induces a temporary willingness in the subject to tell the complete truth upon questioning regardless of any desire to the contrary. Indications urge extreme caution.

Characters

The character biographies below may inadvertently reveal more information than the reader wishes to know.  Please use with caution.

Adams, Bennett

Young, naturally smart, and clever, falling far outside the standard deviation of intelligence. Bennett is an anomaly in society and ostracized because of it. From a rural planet, he made the choice for government service as the only way to find the answers he sought. Bennett rarely forgets information and often has incredible flashes of intuition. Native to Buena Vista, Alshain

Adams, Marcus

Father of Bennett, now deceased

Bai, Ming

Commander, Bureau Navy. Sponsored to the Naval Academy by Captain Oliver Jacobs and his protégé, now actively seeking his apprehension with Demetrius Barros.

Brackett, Cassiopeia (Cia)

Tall and lively, Engineer Cia Brackett reports to Sonya Chhari as a junior rating in the Ardent’s engine crew.

Barros, Demetrius

Rear Admiral, Bureaucracy Navy. A coalition of bureaus recently conferred to Barros carte blanche power to apprehend or destroy Captain Oliver Jacobs.

Chagall, Fernand

Fiercely and intensely loyal, Fernand serves as Third Officer aboard the renegade Bureau starship now known as the Ardent.

Chhari, Sonya

The Chief Engineer and “mother” to the crew of the Ardent, also known as “Sonni”. By the force of her personality, Chhari keeps high spirits and high efficiency among her engineering ratings. Native to Jakarta, Subra.

Davis, Tyrell

Weapons Chief, Ardent. Liaison naval rank conferred by Captain Oliver Jacobs, Tyrell holds the permanent rank of Centurion, Calvary Defense Force. Native to Calvary Enclave – Location Confidential.

Fjels, Steen

Junior pilot and astrogator.

Jacobs, Oliver

Captain of the Ardent, master strategist and renown for research, planning, and a preternatural cunning in battle. Commonly believed to be the only captain who can “beat the numbers game” of drone warfare. At thirty-seven years old, Oliver Jacobs became the first Bureaucracy Naval officer in history to mutiny, taking his ship and crew with him.

Johns, Gabriel

Leader of an upstart criminal counter-organization operating on Merrigo. Johns maintains a reputation for cruelty and ruthlessness.

Kattan, Aziz

(Deceased) Former First Officer of Ardent, killed in action, commended posthumously for the rescue of five fellow crew members. Native to Safavid Enclave – Location Confidential.

MacGregor, Glain

The Clan Chief of MacGregor, also called by the hereditary title of “The MacGregor” and member of the Merrigo Court of Clans. Native to Merrigo, Rana.

MacGregor, Keegan

Only son and heir apparent of Glain MacGregor. Native to Merrigo, Rana.

MacGregor, Roland

(Deceased) Brother to Glain, declared a lifetime debt of gratitude to crew of Ardent and Captain Oliver Jacobs for their part in preventing a plot to destroy Merrigo station. Rumors implicate Gabriel Johns in the death of Roland. Native to Merrigo, Rana.

Mlenar, Arcadia

Explorer, wife of Jensen, currently resident on Buena Vista, Alshain.

Mlenar, Jensen

Master Sergeant, Bureau Marine Infantry, husband to Arcadia. Currently resident on Buena Vista, Alshain.

Michaels, Ian

Former Bureau Naval Intelligence Officer and highly skilled infiltrator, Michaels mutinied with Oliver Jacobs for reasons unknown to serve as Second Officer.

North, Clark

Senior Engineman, assigned by Sonya Chhari to Paladin Maintenance.

O’Donnell, Cathleen (Cathy)

Functions in role of Medical Officer aboard Ardent, but actually holds a doctorate in the field of microbiology.

Pournelle, Alana

Directorate infiltrator commissioned to observe and report on Bureau Naval Captain Oliver Jacobs. Apparently joining crew of Ardent in mutiny and now serving as First Officer in lieu of Aziz Kattan. Native to Imboden, Tania Australis.

Rico, Juan

Communications and Detection Officer.

Sleeper, The

(Information classified)

Thompson, Quinton

Communications and Signal Specialist.

Urban, Charles

Found by Ardent crew disoriented and wandering after Bureau attack on Claremont. Purports to be an economics professor from planet Beaujolais, in the Tyl system.

Watanabe, Iku

Engineering Specialist, First Class. Also called “Lug”.

Worlds

Worlds visited or mentioned during the narrative of the 312 Universe.  The entries below could contain mild spoilers, however, should be mostly safe.  Each one attempts to only convey background regarding each world’s most unique traits.

Buena Vista

buena-vista

A bucolic farm world far from the centers of Bureau governmental power, Buena Vista circles the yellow-white sun Alshain. Bright enough at class G8, the Magnitude IV star only possesses an arbitrary solar mass of 1.32. Consequently, visitors to Buena Vista find Alshain’s light slightly harsh and a bit too cool.

Throughout the majority of Buena Vista’s year, Alshain’s red dwarf companion star, Alshain B, presents as a dull red point dominating the night sky. Inhabitants of Buena Vista refer to the dwarf star as Ol’ Red Shain, or sometimes, the ‘Eye’ of Red Shain. Buena Vista is unique as the only populated planet with access to non-linked star (Alshain B) via subcee drive in less than twenty years travel time. The planet has been used as a staging ground for at least two Exploration efforts to Alshain B, although both proved unsuccessful in the search for new starlinks.

Beyond the proximity to an unlinked star, Buena Vista in all other ways bears the strong conformity and stability of any good Bureau world. Produce from Buena Vista supports more mechanized worlds and is seen on menus of better restaurants as far away as Bureau Prime.

Home Planet: Bennett Adams, Marcus Adams (Arcadia Mlenar, Jensen Mlenar)

Primary: Alshain

Alignment: Bureau

Merrigo

planet-merrigo

Essentially a great stone mass with a rotational period so incredibly fast that the escape velocity at the equator becomes almost negligible. A small orbital station here that serves as an ISOS, but it bears no official status. While bordering the Bureaucracy and the Directorate, both nations ignore Merrigo as worthless.

Jump links into Merrigo are heavily fortified with seeker mines. Rumors or, more likely, brags state that the enough seekers wait at each jump point to destroy over a dozen invading ships.  These statements, however, cannot be verified.  Authentication codes are required to enter the system safely.

Clans of organized criminals control Merrigo station. The source of their wealth remains unknown.

Home Planet: Glain MacGregor, Keegan MacGregor, Roland MacGregor (Gabriel Johns)

Primary: Rana

Alignment: Freeworld

Type: Selenic

Beaujolais

Primary: Tyl

Leon Battista Alberti

planet-leon-battista-alberti

Jakarta

Primary: Subra B

Claremont

Primary: Acamar Due to a large amount of silicon dioxide in its soil, stone and rock on Claremont tends toward hues of purple. The planet has wider than average topics due to a significant axial tilt, which generates gusts of wind called Faire-Gaellies at seasonal change-over. The inhabitants in cities located at the proper latitudes, such as Harper’s Belle, celebrate these nomad gusts by adorning their buildings with all manner of chimes, whistles, and bullroarers.

Imboden

Primary: Tania Australis

Titanius

Primary: Merga

Nocturne

Primary: Tarazed

Dalahäst

Ice Chest