Lost Worlds of 1889

In SPACE:1889, the Martian society is clearly much older than that of Earth's. The planet is dotted with the ruins of a once-mighty civilization, with feats of engineering still extant that dwarf the mightiest achievements of Man. This society is in a state of decay and collapse, as a once-proud people ekes out a iving on a dying world.

But the Ancient Martian civilization is not the oldest civilization in the solar system, not by any means. Prior to the heyday of the Martians, another civilization achieved greatness, but was then destroyed. This was the civilization of the lost planet, Vulcan.

The Vulcanians had a mighty technological culture more advanced than that of Earth; they had not only mastered the Ether but gained technical abilities that modern man only dreams of. Their atomic power and lightning weapons made them unstoppable.

The classic SPACE:1889 timeline has the Vulcan society dying out over a million years ago. This alternate timeline has them exising much closer to the present, though still aeons in the past.

Selenite Myths
The Larva People
The Great War
The Deliverers

Moon Men Myths
City of Light & Science Myth
Tribal Myths
Other Urban Myths

GM's Section

The Legends

Both the Selenites and the Moon Men have some enigmatic legends about the past history of those races and their origins. The Selenite Legends are passed orally from one "Retainer of Knowledge" to the next, while Moon Men legends are in some cases remembered orally (though not as effectively as the Selenites) but also may be preserved in the form of written records. Such records would either be in hidden caches or in libraries of the Science Priests; those are unlikely to be available for public scrutiny.

Selenite Legends

Selenite Legends tell of an idyllic time long ago when all the tribes of the Selenites lived happily in a Giant Cavern. The ceiling of the cavern was very high and a Great Light shone down from the ceiling, along with many lesser lights. Hanging from the ceiling was a giant sapphire, which the Selenites worshipped, calling it "The Water Mother", and they would ask it to provide water from the sky, which she did.

The Giant Cavern was filled with life; wide rivers flowed into giant lakes, and living things abounded everywhere; plants, animals, and many fantastic creatures that no longer live (a retainer of knowledge could probably at this point provide the characters with an exhaustive list, with details, of these creatures - there are hundreds of them). Life was good for the people and they blessed all the various goddesses for giving it to them.

The Larva People
Then the Great Light turned against the people, and sent the "Larva People" against them. The Larva People befriended many of the people, who were curious about them. The Larva People built things out of quicksilver and bore many gifts for the people. But the Larva People also brought many strange creatures with them who went wild in the cavern, and destroyed many animals and hurt many of the people. And in secret the Larva People kidnapped many of the people, and forced them to work and raise food for them, and provide for them, so that they would never have to mature and could live the easy life of the Larvae forever.

This secret was discovered by a seer, one of the people who read the Great Light and lesser lights for news of the future. He discovered that the Larva People wanted to rule the Giant Cavern, and place the people under their heel. This seer was called Kek!Ttaxit!Tor, and the Larva People killed him for his words.

The Great War
Then the people grew angry, and made war on the Larva People, and bred many mighty warriors to fight them. And they enlisted allies from among the Worm People and the People of the Web, and sought to drive them out of the Giant Cavern. But the Larva People were stronger then they appeared, and used weapons of white fire and light that destroyed many of the people. And the war raged to and fro across the surface of the great cavern. And the Larva People grew afraid of the people, and hid in houses they built out of stones, and they would sally forth for great battles with the people, where thousands and tens of thousands would die.

But for every Larva Person the people killed, another was sent from the Great Light (which had turned against the people). And the wise men of the people gathered and considered how to stop the Larva People from coming. And in their ponderings they discovered where the Larva People were coming from, and how they got to the Great Cavern. For in the celing beside the Great Light was a doorway, marked by a smaller light, which led to another Cavern. This other Cavern was where the Larva People's home was, and they would build big silver eggs that would descend softly to the floor of the Cavern and hatch, spewing forth more Larva People.

And winged warriors grew among the people, who would fly up and attack the eggs of the Larva People. And other warriors would hurl giant flaming stones at the eggs. But whenever one of the eggs was destroyed, the Great Light would send more. And many of these eggs were surrounded by the white fire of the Larva People, and the warriors could not attack them.

The Deliverers
So the wise men deliberated on how the door in the ceiling could be closed, and the how the Larva People could be killed or driven away. And they decided on a plan, whereby they would breed great warriors, who would fly up into the Cavern of the Larva People and destroy it.

So, when the time was ripe, and the people were ready, the three warriors, who were called the Deliverers, began to climb the walls of the Cavern in order to get to the doorway on the ceiling, and from thence, climb through. And once withing the Great Cavern of the Larva People they would try to collapse it, killing those inside.

And the Great Light grew angry at the people, for trying to kill the Larva People, who were its chosen. So the Great Light called away the Larva People; many flew back up through the door to their cave, and many more buried themselves in smaller caves, so soon, there were no Larva People were left in the Giant Cavern. And when this was accomplished, the great light began to pur down it's great white fire upon the people. This white fire destroyed everything it touched; not only all life but even air and water and stone. And with a mighty roaring the white fire spread throughout the Giant Cavern until all was destroyed.

Only the people who hid in smaller caverns below were safe from the white fire. But once the fire had died out, the Giant Cavern had been destroyed, and those people who tried to return to it died out. Only those creatures that had hid from the white fire in the small caverns escaped alive. These creatures from thenceforth made their living in the small caves of the world. And they spread from one cave to the next, so that all the tribes who fled the white fire were able to find new homes. And the Water Mother did not forget them, but sent rivers among the caves to remind them that she still cared for the people.

Hearing the Myth
This myth could easily be repeated by K'Chuk (who, naturally, knows it by heart), or just about any Selenite Retainer of Knowldge the Characters encounter. While the legend is somewhat corrupt, nevertheless it has been preserved quite well considering that it has been passed down generation to Generation for 35,000 years.

People hearing this myth might note that it is a sort of "Garden of Eden" myth, which records a sort of "fall" from grace in the Giant Cavern which the Selenites came from. And while it does represent such a story, the Myth does have important differences. The "Larva People" may seem to fill the role of the Serpent, but they actually wage war on the Selenites (referred to in Selenite myths as simply "the people"), and are the servants of the God of Light which has turned her back on them. No "crime" is recorded as being performed by the Selenites that might account for this betrayal.

There may in fact be a core of truth in this legend, so if you are a GM, see the GM's section for details. If you are a player in a campaign, then I'd recommend consulting with your GM before reading this part. If he does not intend to use this material in his campaign, then you may as well go ahead.

Moon Men Myths

City of Light & Science Legends

Within the City of Light and science, religious dogma, including origin legends, are controlled by the Science Priests. These legends are structured to conform with acceptible religious thought, and tend to be somewhat vague.

These legends also mention a "Great Light", but in the eyes of the Science Priests, the "Light" is a good force, and is synonymous with God, Knowledge, Truth, etc.

Science Priests tell their people that the Moon Men were created by the Great Light, and came out of it into a world full of demons and darkness. However, the Moon Men were not thrust into this world by force, rather they volunteered to be the messengers and crusaders for the Great Light. The "demons" were brutish creatures that lived in darkness, and chose to remain ignorant rather than be enlightened by the Great Light.

So the Moon Men fought with the demons, and they pushed the darkness back and created a place where the light could flourish. But the demons corrupted many of the Moon Men, enticing them away from the Light, and convinced them to live in the Darkness as beasts. And the Great Light shut it's gates, and forbade the Moon Men to return. So now the Science Priests perform their rituals faithfully in the hopes that they will be found worthy by the Great Light, and be allowed to return to paradise.

Naturally, the people of the City of Light and Science regard other Moon Men as "damned" and "cursed", since they have renounced the righteous path and betrayed the cause of Light. They are often referred to as "traitors" and "the Dark ones" by the people of the City of Light and Science, and are generally trated with scorn or pity, or are simply ignored altogether. However, the trading economy of the land of the Moon Men is a thriving one and the City of Light and Science currently depends on it's trade with other cities.

The Mission Heresy
One Heresy that has cropped up in various forms over time, and most recently about 200 years ago, is the Mission Heresy. This heretical position states that the Moon Men were given a "Mission" of conquering the Darkness. The reason that the Great Light is denied them is that this "Mission" is incomplete; that the City of Light and Science has failed in it's mission to conquer the world (meaning of course, their Cavern). Thus the "Missionists" believe that the true union with the great light can only be achieved after a successful conquest of the world.

Various variants of this heresy have occurred, with differences between them being generally one of methodology. Some Missionists have believed that this Mission could be completed through the conversion of other cities, while others have suggested that it be done by conquest and/or enslavement. Still others, believing that the "traitors" are irrevocably damned, have advocated a wholescale Genocide of the rest of the Moon Men. Many such heresies involve a mixture of these strategies.

This Heresy is one that periodically crops up and is often popular with soldiers and more aggressive members of the public. Naturally this is because it gives the military a real role in the pursuance of the faith, rather than relegating them to the role of the lackeys and enforcers of the Science Priests. An underground movement exists that meets in secret, and perhaps a quarter of the city guardsmen are members, along with perhaps 5% of the city population.

These Heretics meet in a ruined temple, the Temple of the Eternal Flame. The Temple has been in ruins for 600 years (it was destroyed by the Science Priests for it's heretical doctrine) but has underground chambers that are still used. These chambers are accessed through underground passages from other surrounding buildings, so as not to arouse suspicion. The Temple of the Eternal Flame was once the temple dedicated to metallurgy, and has a number of relics. These include woven steel tunics worn by the high priests, and swords made from Superhard Steel, including a single Unstable Sword. Perhaps the most valuable and precious relic is a portable Lighting Cannon, which the Missionists hope will one day be used against enemies in the field. They would never use it against their own kind.

One principal flaw in this doctrine is that the City of Light and Science no longer has the capability to duplicate most of the technology there, so spreading the influence of the city would be difficult at best. Certainly conquered nations could not be turned into duplicates of the City of Light and Science, since the building techniques to make a place like that are long gone. This does not dismiss the Genocide option, but this course of action has it's own problems.

The Empirical Heresy
The Empirical Heresy, of which Naporrow Bing is a member, is a heresy that seems to pop up periodically and sometimes independently. This Heresy states that the Gates to the Great Light are shut because the Moon Men's knowledge of the Godhead (i.e. Science) is incomplete, and actual empirical study can reveal truths. This Heresy tends to have members that are already Science Priests, though a few members of the public ascribe to it as well. These are usually people who work closely with machines and depend on their operation; they appreciate the hands-on knowhow of the Priests of the Shining Flow and think they deserve more credit.

This heresy naturally frightens the more orthodox members of the Priesthood, since it would allow the tinkering of amateurs to overturn doctrine that has been held for centuries. Orthodox priests hold that any sort of "experiment" could easily be tampered with to achieve a specific desired result, and since the people who perform such experiments do so in order to overthrow correct dogma and corrupt the body of belief, therefore any experimental results can be considered suspect.

Some Science Priests become Empiricists by accident, out of a genuine interest in Science. Since the prohibitions against experimentation are meant to protect the faith against charlatans, surely the work of a sincere priest hould be exempt from such prohibition? Scientists like Naporrow Bing often become enamored by the fact that they could do a service to the body of faith by carrying out such illegal experiments. However, they pretty much universally get punished by the Council of Priests; and many recant their heresy, while others are sentenced to labour on the penal isle.

However, an organized structure does exist for Empricists, that tends to meet in secret. This group keeps a sacred record of experiments, and the bulk of it's members are dedicated to making sure that these experiments are not discovered, rather than actually participating. This organization is so used to it's mission of avoiding detection by authorities that it often misses the boat in the chance to protect people who could be valuable to it's cause, like Naporrow Bing.

Occaisionally, however, the Empiricists will stage some sort of public experiment. This will be conducted by a single chosen individual, who will naturally be arrested and punished. This person inevitably becomes a martyr, though the plan backfires if the person is made to publically recant his heretical beliefs.

Ecstatic Heresy
The Ecstatic Heresy is one which periodically crops up, and it is unclear whether it was inspired by the tribal beliefs of many of the nomadic people living outside the city, or if exiled members of this movement influenced those tribes into adopting this form of worship.

Essentially, the Ecstatics use chemicals harvested from a variety of Fungi to induce a hallucinogenic state, in which the Moon Man then becomes "Enlightened", and recieves the "Blessing of the Great Light". These visions are seen (by Ecstatics, at least) as a source of divine revelation, a way of "opening the gates" to the Great Light, which is normally not really visible to mortals.

The center for the Ecstatic movement has traditionally been the now-abandoned Temple of the Water of Life, which was a temple dedicated to Biochemistry, a science no longer practiced in the City. However, underground initiates of the Order of the Water of Life still do retain a few of their temple's relics, which include some miracle drugs, capable of curing any illness or infirmity, and some Strength Elixir, which drastically increases the Moon Men's normally low strength.

Occaisionally "Prophets" of the Water of Life try to arouse public favour by performing "miracles" through the use of these drugs; such prophets tend to arouse a great deal of popular support. However, such events have always in the past led to a violent crackdown by the City authorities. Recently the Order of the Water of Life has taken a new strategy, making it known that it is willing to trade these "miracles" for loyalty to the organization.

Darkness Heresy
Perhaps the most bizarre heretical movement in the City of Light and Science is the practice of Darkness worship. The theology of this movement is rather muddled, and makes a variety of sometimes contradictory assertions:

Darkness worshippers generally ascribe to one or more of the above tenets, and naturally their religion is one that is feared by the Science Priests and by most of the Public of the City as well, who see these people as trying to overthrow their way of life (which they are).

Darkness Worship in Lunar Society can be likened to Devil Worship in Christian society, and naturally Darkness Worshippers are seen as "evil" or "the enemy" by most people. This goes to the extent that Darkness reverence is a common accusation by the authorities against their enemies; they know that little sympathy will be given to such "Demon Worshippers".

This raciness may be one of the chief draws of Darkness Worship, however. Many adherents are not seriously religious but practice this worship to get back at the authorities in their own way. The faith is mostly composed of dabblers and dilettantes, though a core of genuine believers exists. Ritual varies widely from sect to sect, but one thing in common the Darkness Worshippers practice is the use of a ritual mask by the high priest (and sometimes by adherents as well). This mask is made from a dried-out Humma skull/head, and the insectoid appearance that this makes is said to be the actual face of the Darkness.

Other Moon Men Myths

Tribal Myths
Many Tribal societies exist amongst the Moon Men, and it can be said that life in the Great Cavern is not necessarily condusive towards civilized behaviour. Most cities control a region within between 20 and 30 miles of the city; beyond that the lands are held by nomads and tribesmen, and the traditions of these nomads varies widely.

Fisher Folk
The fisher folk of the islands and the cave walls believe that the great cavern is actially the stomach of a great whale, who lives in an even greater sea that stretches for eternity. The Moon Men were originally hatched from eggs that the great whale had eaten, along with all the other creatures that they see in the great cavern. This great whale is now full grown and does not eat very much any more, though the fisherfolk do understand the currents in the Great Sea and can tell people where the water flows from, and where it leaves the Great Sea.

Should these fisher-folk encounter humans, they are likely to simply assume that the great whale has eaten them, and will be curious about the Great Ocean the humans must be from. They will be glad to hear that the great whale is eating again, since they are not sure how long he will live. The humans will constitute proof that the whale is healthy.

The fisherfolk also believe that the City of Light and Science once tried to use evil magicks to try to escape from the belly of the whale, but all they succeeded in doing was to give the great whale an ulcer (The Mother of Waters). The Fisherfolk would like to heal the great whale, but have no idea how to do it, nor are they inclined to try anything aggressive towards the City of Light and Science.

The Nomads of the Great Peninsula believe that the Great Cavern is a pocket of order amidst a great chaos, and the pocket is the result of a constant struggle between light and darkness. Neither Light nor Darkness is by necessity good or evil, and the Nomads consider the Science Priests to be at the heart of folly revering one and not the other.

The Light is a harsh force, truthful, but painful, and wrathful. It is the force that recognizes the hard realities of life. The Darkness, on the other hand, is the realm of sleep, and comfort, and the seducer through dreams, but is also the home of treachery and death.

All things in the world are a product of the struggle between these two forces, and unhappiness is the result of tension between these energies. The ultimate result is that the Moon Men themselves are forced to live in a world of toil and suffering, pain and death. In a way, death is considered a release from the pain of life; the restful long sleep, where one dreams forever in the presence of his ancestors. But the suffering of life must be endured by the Moon Men, who have a stoic attitude about life. One cannot change the way that life is; one can simply endure. In this way, they cheat both the Light and the Darkness, and stand on their own.

The Nomads consider the two forces to represent ways of life, and strive to achieve balance between them. The Light represents warfare, struggle, and toil. Nomads work hard at what they do, and are valourous in war. On the other hand, the Darkness represents pleasure, relaxation, and luxury. The nomads seek these things out too, and among them are great musicians and dancers. Their refusal to live life at either extreme but rather to incorporate both into their lives is a part of a system of maintaining their neutrality in the struggl between these forces.

The nomads would not consider that it would be worthwhile or even possible to take sides in the struggle between these two forces, because those forces are all-powerful and no effort of man will affect the outcome or progress of their struggle. The nomads have a dim view of people who consider themselves the servants of Light or Darkness, thinking them self-deluded madmen. A nomad would be fearful of doing so, in part because he would fear to become a pawn in that mighty struggle, and be washed away or sacrificed by an uncaring force he could never comprehend or trust.

Since this war is believed to be primarily fought on the spirit plane, the practice of witchcraft is either forbidden or glorified, depending on the outlook of the tribe. Tribes that glorify such behaviour tend to be consumers of narcotic hallucinogens similar to the ones used by the Ecstatics. However, the pleasurable hallucination is not necessarily sought, and a "bad trip" is considered as valuable as a good one, or often more, since it means that the man's soul has undergone some sort of test.

Urban Myths
The other cities of the Cavern of the Moon Men have different views of the origin of their people. They tend not to glorify science, and instead emphasize a number of other goals and virtues. The core of the myths of the other urban lands tends to involve the City of Light and Science to some degree or another, particularily those on the mainland close to the City of Light and Science.

According to the most common story, the Moon Men were born from eggs in a cavern far below the floor of the Great Cavern. These eggs were layed by a race of angels who were doing battle with a comparable race of devils. Since the angels thought that their war with the devils might cause all the angels and devils to be destroyed, they hid these eggs in a cavern deep below.

A group of these eggs hatched first, and these 'elder children' went about preparing a place to live and work for all the rest of the people. When the rest of the eggs hatched, he 'younger children' found themselves at the mercy of the elders, and were forced to obey them because of how vulnerable they were, and the fact that the elders had picked up all the gifts left for the children by the angels, and used the great weapons of the angels to strike fear into the hearts of the younger children.

So the younger children became the servants of the elder children, and they worked to provide the elders with all that they desired. The elder children, on the other hand, worked to make themselves angels like the people that they were descended from, and if the war still raged between the devils and the angels, then the elder children could come to their aid.

But no matter what the elder children did, they could not make themselves into angels, nor could they discover what became of the angels in the war of long ago. So they began to dress themselves in fine robes, and parade about with the tools and weapons of the angels, saying: "Behold! We have become the Angels of light that we always strove to become! Worship us and our light, and live in the protection of our light, and you all will have peace and happiness."

Many of the younger children did so, and lived among the elder children and served them as gods. But others were not so easily tricked. They spoke amongst themselves, saying: "The elder children have not become angels, but only pretend to be angels through the tools the angels left behind. Let us not serve them, or worship them, for to do so would be a falsehood." So many of the younger children rebelled against the elders, and some fought them, while others fled the city into the wilds. For the weapons and the wrath of the elder children were terrible indeed.

And many of these younger children gathered together in the wilderness, having escaped from the elder children. And they found the life there hard without the tools of the angels to help them; there was toil and suffering and sickness. And many of the younger children said "Let us return to the city of the Elder children, and beg for their forgiveness, in the hopes that they will take us in again, and we can be their servants." And many of the youger children thought this was a good idea.

But one among them, named Eloisiyar Xan, spoke to the younger children, saying: "Is not this the land the angels prepared for us? For they made this place so that we could live in it, and master it. No one can say that life here is easy, for we must toil for our food and clothing, we must build our own houses and make our own tools. But they will be ours, and this land will be ours, free of the falsehood that plagues the elder children. Let us live here, and build our own city, and make this land our own."

And so the younger children built the First Town, which is called First Town to this day. And the younger children prospered, and spread over the land, and tamed it. And many other cities were built, and the people built roads between them, and built ships to sail on the great sea. And now the younger children are happy being free of the elder children, and the elder children still play with the tools of the angels, in the vain hope that they can become gods.

GM's Notes

The following material represents background which only a GM ought to have access to. If your GM is using this material in his game, it is recommended that you stop here and read no further.

The "Truth"

The origin of many of these myths is an actual history of the Vulcanians and Selenites, and their contact with one another, and the events that followed.

35,000 years ago, the planet Vulcan was the home of an advanced civilization. This civilization revered science and knowledge above all, and placed it's scientists at the apex of their culture. These scientists used their knowledge and wisdom to overcome all the barriers that nature imposes on mortal beings. Disease had been eliminated, the populace was well fed and content, and it seemed that there was nothing they could not achieve.

Naturally, the Vulcanian scientists discovered the secrets of the Ether, and learned how to construct spaceships and to travel between worlds. Most of the worlds of the inner solar system they visited at least once, though the (comparatively) high gravity of these worlds made any sort of colonization impossible, and exploration was difficult. Only one world of the inner system truly interested the Vulcanians, and that was the Moon.

At that time, the Moon had an atmosphere, and life abounded on it's surface, even if that life was somewhat more primitive than the Vulcanians were used to. The atmosphere was fairly thin, so the world was cooler than it's mother planet, the Earth. This suited the Vulcanians perfectly, and the set out to colonize the world.

Unfortunately, the Moon was already inhabited by the strange race of Selenites. These insect people did not have the trappings of civilization; they did not use tools or have posessions in the normal way thet the Vulcanians did. Nevertheless, the Vulcans eventually realized that the Selenites were indeed intelligent beings.

The Vulcanians tried interacting with the Selenites on a variety of levels. Some tried to Trade with them and study them, while others attempted to make them slaves or servants on plantations. Others considered them vermin and advocated wiping them out.

No specific incident is recorded by the Vulcanians as having started the war between the Selenites and the Vulcanians, though the Seleniites do remember one, which may or may not have been an actual turning point. Nevertheless, a war broke out between the Selenites and the Vulcanians, a war the Vulcanians were confident they could win. After all, the Vulcanians were masters of space and technology, while the Selenites still scratched out a living in the dust of the Moon.

The Vulcanians did not count on the efficient and organized Selenite society, nor did they understand the capabilities of the Selenites' own special technology. The Selenites possessed the ability to breed Selenites for specific purposes. While most of Selenite society was made up of workers and custodians, other breeds existed, such as the strong and deadly Warrior caste and the lighting-fast, winged Scout caste. The Selenites were able somehow to design such new breeds which were made for a specific purpose.

If you've seen the film Starship Troopers you'll have an idea of what I'm getting at. In the Selenites the Vulcanians found a tenacious and aggressive foe, one they soon realized they had underestimated. While Vulcanian weaponry was extraordinarily powerful, the Selenites seemed to be able to muster limitless amounts of manpower, and were never daunted by the heavy casualties the recieved. Soon, the Vulcanians found themselves on the retreat, withdrawing to colonial strongpoints they had established.

The Vulcanians turned to their Scientists for an answer, an ultimate weapon that would sway the tide against the Selenites. The scientists came up with an answer, a fearsome bomb that could be dropped from space and was guaranteed to destroy entire cities. The Vulcanians prepared to use this weapon against the Selenites, in the hopes of extinguishing the Selenite Civilization once and for all.

The Vulcanians had always assumed that the war would be fought on the soil of Luna, rather than in space, or on their homeworld. So they based their plan around an orbital bombardment. However, they had not counted on the Selenite's ability to custom-make lifeforms to achieve specific ends. The Selenites realized that to win the war they had to do more than destroy all Vulcanians on the surface of the Moon; they had to prevent the Vulcanians from getting there in the first place.

So the Selenites engineered creatures that were capable of traversing the depths of space. These creatures were capable of withstanding enormous extremes of heat and cold, and were built to be tunnelers; they would dig themselves into the planet's crust, into the core, and there they would destabilize the core of the planet, causing chaos.

Three such creatures were launched towards Vulcan, and at least one found its way there. It burrowed into the crust of the planet, and was not seen again. Within weeks, the planet began experiencing earthquakes and volcanic eruptions on a scale it had never known before. The Scientists worked frenziedly for a solution. Once they realized that the Selenites were responsible, they unleashed their terror-weapon, and it was more deadly than they could have possibly imagined.

With the detonation of the super-bombs on the surface of the Moon, a chain raction began, which surged across the face of the Moon in a huge fireball. Everything in the path of the Firestorm was destroyed, to the point at which even the atmosphere of the Moon evaporated from the world's surface, to leave the Moon a lifeless, airless rock. The Vulcanians had destroyed the thing they had come to conquer.

Meanwhile, back on Vulcan, the Scientists embarked on an ambitious project, where they would construct a machine capable of pursuing and doing battle with the creature in their planet's core. They sent this machine on it's mission, crewed by dozens of their society's best scientists and soldiers. This device entered the planet and pusued the Creature at the core. All contact was lost with the machine, so whether it succeeded or failed is a matter of conjecture. However, whatever the machine accomplished, the tremors and eruptions began to get worse.

Soon scientists realized that their world was falling apart, and little time remained them. They embarked on a new plan, whereby "survivor" colonies would be placed in catacombs beneath the surface of the Moon, in places they discovered still had air. These colonies would have machinery with which the colonists could make a new home, and the colonists themselves were placed in a machine controlled hibernation, so that many colonists could be transported without supplies.

These colonies would be designed to recreate the Vulcanian Society after the planet had been destroyed, though they would be awoken after the destruction of the planet, since it was unknown what effect the destruction of the planet would have on the resto of the Solar System. Eventually, after awakening, these societies were expected to construct machines capable of recreating the Lunar atmosphere, and allowing the world to be remade into the imageof the mother planet.

So, after a few months, the planet Vulcan cracked apart after an explosion at the core, and pieces of rock were catapulted all over the solar system. Most remained in the relative vicinity of the original orbit of the planet, though many fell sunward or flew off deeper into the solar system. While many of the craters on the Moon are a result of the orbital bombardment, many more are the result of meteorite impacts dating from this event.

One such gigantic meteor would find it's way to the planet Mars, and would strike the planet west of what is now Gaaryan, forming a gigantic crater. The resultant dust cloud and climatological changes brought on by the meteor stike gave birth to the melting of the Martian icecaps, which resulted in the Age of Water, the Dawn of Martian civilization.

The Phoenix Project

The "Phoenix Project" is the best translation of the program that created colonies of Moon Men elsewhere in the solar system, in the few months prior to the destruction of their planet. The Great Cavern of the Moon Men is one example of the result of this program, but other examples also occurred. These colonies in general died out, for one reason or another.

Mercury Colony
The Vulcanians established a colony on the Planet Mercury, near the south pole. The ruins of the outpost are still there, and it is not known why the colony did not prove viable. However, an underground society might exist on Mercury as well. Remember that over the period following the destruction of Vulcan, Mercury has precessed about a quarter-turn, so something that was in the temperate zone has moved 90 degrees and lies now in the Dark Side or Hot Side.

Martian Colony
The Vulcanians also established a colony on Mars, though the higher gravity of Mars required the settlers to experiment with hybridization, mixing their genes with those of the ancient High Martians. Their society ended up moving underground, though in the early age of Martian expansion, the Vulcanians were able to rule over and lead the early High Martians to develop a powerful warrior culture, enslaving the lesser non-flying Martians. The architecture of many of the Kraags is far beyond what High Martians are now capable of, and points to a time where the High Martians had much greater technology and culture.

Moon Colony
The Planet Vulcan also had moons; three of them, in fact, and the Vulcanians built bases on these worldlets prior to the destruction of their world. The close proximity of the moons and the already-established bases meant that these locations were the ideal spot to build and emergency colony.

The largest of these worldlets is now the asteroid Vesta, a large, bright asteroid several hundred miles in diameter. The most advanced base of the Vulcanians would have been here, and this colony had the highest liklihood of being viable. However, it is pretty clear that if there are still Vulcanians living there, they have not ventured forth from their little world in a long time. They may have a decaying culture like the Cavern of the Moon Men, or they might be waiting for a time to revive many people and animals held in stasis. Internal struggles within the society may have caused wars and damaged the colony irreprably.

Jupiter Colonies
It is also probable that the Vulcanians sent an expedition or two to settle among the moons of Jupiter. What befell these colonies is anyone's guess.

Venus Colony
The high gravity, intense heat, and agressive wildlife, all suggest that the Vulcnaians would have had the least chance of success in a colonial venture on Venus. However, Vulcanian philosophy would suggest that the science of the Vulcanians can overcome all obstacles, and the Vulcanians may have made an attempt, on the grounds that they ought to cover as many bases as possible.

Earth Colony
While no evidence of a Vulcanian colony has been discovered on Earth, the Vulcanians probably at least visited the planet. 35,000 years ago, Earth was still locked in the grips of it's last Ice Age, so the Vulcans probably would have looked for settlements in the tropics. Ruins in Inca settlements do depict strange men in flying vehicles, who wear clear bubbles over their heads; that might in fact be Vulcanians. Or, a Vulcan settlement may be the origin for the legends of Atlantis.

The Truth Behind Selenite Mythology

The Selenite Creation myth recounts in a general way fairly accurately the War between the Selenites and the Vulcanians, 35,000 years ago. Various things within those myths have encoded meaning, because the concepts that they refer to are no longer comprehensible by modern Selenites.

For example, the Vulcanians are, of course, the "Larva People", and the Selenites referred to them as such because of their whitish-blue coloration and lack of hair. The "Great Cavern" that they live in is in fact the surface of the Moon, something most Selenites have a hard time imagining. However, players hearing about this might mistake it for the cavern of the Moon Men. Likewise the "Great Light" is the Sun, while the "lesser lights" are the stars.

The "Silver Eggs" are of course the spacecraft of the Vulcanians, while the "Doorway" in the ceiling next to the "lesser light" is the way to the planet Vulcan. The "Lesser Light" is the Planet Vulcan as visible from the surface of the moon, while the "Upper Cavern" is the planet itself. The "White Fire" refers to the etheric weapons of the Vulcanians, such as their Lightning Cannons, and their final superweapon, the Etheric Bomb.

Unless the players have a way of knowing the truth, however, this legend is going to seem like an account of the struggle between two races native to the Moon. The GM should do nothing to disabuse them of this notion, though it probably will seem clear to any biologist that while the Selenites fit neatly into the ecology and evolutionary structure of the Moon, the Moon Men definitely do not.

Of interest within this legend is the reference to the "Worm People", and the "People of the Web". These were other sapient races that once lived on the surface of the Moon, and they may still exist deep within the honeycomb of passages that lies under the Lunar surface.

The "Worm People" are essentially like giant centipedes, who are highly intelligent and a little bit evil. They lay eggs that need to incubate inside another living host, and they are born with much of the knowledge and survival instincts of their hosts. They have a number of mental abilities, including a sort of crude hypnosis, and they can be very dangerous. The "People of the Web" are essentially Spider People, and are much more intimidating individually than the Selenites or Worm People. They can spin webs, and many types are venomous. Both the Worm People and Spider People tend to be solitary, and do not have the kind of social network that the Selenites have.

The Truth Behind Moon Man Mythology

Moon Men myths recall vaguely a struggle between the "Light" and the "Darkness", or between "Angels" and "Demons". This struggle was in fact the Great War between the Vulcanians and the Selenites. The Selenites are the archetype for the "Demons", which is why the priests of the Darkness Heresy wear Humma-skulls as masks; this recalls the face of the Selenite, to whom the Hummas are distantly related.

Moon Men legends also recall the original schism that caused many Moon Men to leave the City of Light and Science and found societies elsewhere in the Cavern of the Moon Men. There may have been one or more such event; probably several. The First Town legend has a story about the oppression of the worker class (the "younger Children") by the scientist class (the "Elder Children"), which is probably basically true.

Likewise, many legend recall the first Moon Men being born from "eggs" deep beneath the ground level of the Great Cavern. These "Eggs" are in fact the original stasis tanks in which the people were put in hibernation in order to facilitate saving the largest number of people with the least resources. The chamber where these tanks were originally stored is somewhere deep below the City of Light and Science, and houses some of the original Atomic Reactors, as well as a great many other artifacts.

The place is no longer visited by Moon Men, who no longer remember that it exists, though there are a few robots that still function down there. Not enough to keep everything running, but enough for a few basic things. Many of these robots likely are malfuncioning in a variety of ways, and might behave erratically or run amok, attacking the players should they ever arrive there. Others will simply have broken down or run out of power.