The Sun

Content warnings for this page: genocide (cultural and otherwise), settler colonialism, mental health issues, and wealth inequity.

The Sun is a joint military battle station constructed by the USA, the UK, Russia, China, Japan, and other smaller stakeholders. It was originally designed in response to the launch of the League of Orbital Nations’ habitat, to provide military supremacy in space, and maintain a balance of power amongst its stakeholder nations.

The Sun is controlled by the Solar Free State, which is made up of representatives from the military and corporations who funded the construction of the Sun. Theoretically there are elections within this council, but in reality General Major Payne has represented the military branch since the Sun left Earth orbit, and LAD CEO Elmo Snuk has represented the corporate branch for just as long. Learn more about the factions of the Sun here: Corporate, Military, and Criminal and Civilian.

The Sun is heavily armed, but its primary system is the CORONA (Consolidated Offensive Radiant Operation Nuclear Array). The CORONA is an aura of superheated plasma that can be used to defend against attack by melting incoming munitions (or attackers), or focused into a devastating beam. For centuries, the Sun has been running this system every day to act as a crude local star inside the habitat, while drawing power from the habitat’s emergency reserves to keep it running. To accomplish this, the inhabitants of the Sun installed a system of cables and runners above the section of the habitat where the survivors of their genocide live, allowing them to move the battle station around to distribute the light and heat– and to destroy any hints of resistance or progress which could threaten their security.

There are approximately 5 million people living in the Sun, which is roughly the population of modern-day Sydney. These people are a mix of the original military and corporate crew, their families and cronies, refugees who were able to pay the exorbitant ticket costs during the evacuation of Earth, a generation born on the trip from Earth orbit to the asteroid belt, and a few stowaways. The vast majority of the population are consigned to robotic bodies, relying on an ersatz reality called the Sim to experience human sensations. This allows them to keep a baseline level of mental health, as the isolation of living in a robotic body without any way to experience the world beyond sight and hearing can have severe negative effects. All citizens are provided with the minimum possible amount of time to access the Sim to keep them functional. They can pay more to improve the quality of the Sim, spend more time there, or remove the ads. Their minds are regularly backed up to the Sun’s servers, where they are often edited and scrubbed by the Sodality of Preservation to make controlling the populace easier. Most people are vaguely aware of what they did to the habitat, but have had those memories dimmed and made vague. They could certainly learn the truth if they put in the effort to get past the censors, but most do not.

The Sun is built in layers– yes, like an onion. The closer you are to the hull of the station, the less you are worth to the Solar Free State. Most outer and mid layers do not even bother powering their life support systems, as the robotic bodies do not need them. The Core of the Sun is a constructed ecosystem with a collection of pleasant flora and fauna, parks, houses, and simulated weather. The wealthiest and most influential 50,000 people live there. Most of the resources extracted from the habitat go to supporting this community.

Wealthier denizens of the Sun can afford partial or full human bodies to inhabit. These bodies are taken from the habitat– people who die of natural causes, or who reach the shut off age of 65 in the habitat, have their bodies transported to the Sun, where Human Resources process them and prepare them for embodiment… for the right price. Only the wealthiest can afford to continually replace their human bodies, and there is no guarantee that a body will accept a downloaded mind. Host rejection is common. Most use cosmetic surgery and gene therapy to make their stolen bodies look more like the ones they had in their own previous lives.

The Sun invaded the habitat to hide from the Emergency. While the people of the habitat initially invited them to share their hiding place, the Sun’s residents were not satisfied with that arrangement and greedily attempted to take the habitat for themselves. The battle that followed was devastating, and resulted in the atmosphere of the habitat becoming dense with nanomachines that were actively hostile to the DNA of the people from the Sun. In the end, they were unable to settle on the habitat, and so settled for gradually destroying it and its people instead. One day, the people of the Sun hope to find a way to clear the hostile nanomachines from the atmosphere so that they can get rid of the habitat’s residents permanently and take over their territory completely. In the mean time, the Solar Free State has carried out a slow genocide that has gradually reduced the population and habitable zone of the habitat to “manageable” levels, and has used gene hacking, targeted generational trauma, propaganda, and nanowarfare to ensure that the people of the habitat have all but lost their culture and cultural memory, and cannot live past the age of 65, among other things.