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Phoebus

UPP: D267337-3

by Lewis Roberts, John Macpherson, Paul Walker, Rich Osteroro

PHYSICAL APPEARANCE
FLORA & FAUNA
HISTORY
CULUTURE
SOCIETY
POLITICS
EXTENDED SYSTEM
MAP TO CENTRAL REGION

PHYSICAL APPEARANCE

Flora & Fauna

Durga:
The Durga is a large, omnivore, marsupial creature native to Phoebus's highlands. There are two distinct subspecies, the larger mountain variety and the smaller hill Durga. The Durga is constantly eating and it will eat anything in its path, from bushes to carrion. The Durga has large nasal cavities that connects with its throat; this allows the Durga to make loud bellowing noises. The durga herds use these sounds to communicate across the mountains. The communication is fairly primitive, used mainly to let other herds know that a competitor is in the region, so that the two herds can avoid each other. The herds avoid each other in order not to overgraze their territory. A herd in the wild is made up of an equal number of male and female durgas. Durgas mate in the early spring, the pregnancy lasts six months, and the young is born in early summer. Durgas never have multiple births. The young is about the size of large piglet, and is stored in a pouch on the mother's underside.

The skin of a Durga is a matte black, except for a brightly colored streak that runs from the tip of the tail, along the spine, to the brow where it branches out to cover the entire head. The colors are quite varied, the most common colors are yellows and greens, but blues and reds are not unheard of. Each beast weighs about 2 metric tons, is about 3 meters long, and 1 meter high. They are fairly slow and very stupid. They are primarily used for meat, but almost all of the carcass is used for something. Farmers are able to get significant amounts of milk, from female durgas. This is not as much as Terran cattle, but the farmers are able to make cheese and other dairy products from it. The Phoebans make an alcoholic drink name drakva from the fermented blood of young durgas. So far they have not found much of an export market for this drink, but they are still trying.

Omnivore, Eater Weight: 2000kg Weapon: Teeth & Claws Hits: 6d20 To Hit: 9 Initiative: 3 Damage/Pen: 2d6/1 Armor: 1 Range: Long

Ominvore, Eater
Weight: 2000 kg Weapon: Teeeth & Claws
Hits: 6 D20 To Hit: 9
Initiative: 3 Damage/Pen: 2 D6/1
Armor: 1 Range: Long



Mineral Content:

Extended System:

History

Fuetz, as Phoebus was originally called, was rediscovered in 200. During the early part of her existence, Fuetz was nothing more than a mining colony from Vras (Aubaine) where many prospectors spent their lives trying to "strike it rich" on the planet. Then in 1036, an independent miner discovered a mother load of Iridium. The miner's name was Elan Diego. Fuetz capital and only city is named for him.

When word of Elan's discovery got out, Fuetz developed almost overnight. Many businesses moved in to try to get in on the profits. Within months, Fuetz was one of the quickest growing worlds in the Old Expanses. Many entrepreneurs moved into the city looking to earn a quick credit from the miners who lived in the city. Bars and brothels were slung up on every corner to fulfill the needs of the miners on Fuetz. Fuetz was truly a boomtown planet.

Then in 1101, the mine played out. Many of the prospectors worked the area to try to find more of the precious metal, but no one was successful. The situation on Fuetz quickly degenerated, and eventually the subsector duke was called upon to institute martial law. The population on Feutz dropped a little, but most of the people there were simple, poor miners, prostitutes, and bar tenders without enough credits to get offplanet.

During the following years, Feutz stabilized under martial law and eventually the Subsector Duke removed the martial law, but left his representative, Braylan Garett, there to "keep an eye on things." It was the wisdom and guidance of Braylan Garett that kept the population of Feutz from extinction during the Final War and Collapse.

In 1131, Virus reached Feutz. Many of the populace were killed almost immediately when the gravity generators that helped hold up mine shafts shut themselves off. Those who were not killed immediately were left to fight for survival on the near barren world.

Braylan Garett was quick to react. He appointed himself as Lord Regent, divided the land into manors, and set up the most influential and powerful people as citizens and manor directors. Most of the citizens were assigned the task of providing food, either from growing plants, or durga herding.

Fuetz was not unharmed by Virus, but through careful planning and quick reaction, some were able to survive. Shortly after Feutz was recontacted by the Reformation Coalition, the RC offered Fuetz membership, and they accepted. Feutz changed its name, like many other worlds. The new name, Phoebus, symbolizes the hope that the RC brings.

Since being recontacted by the Coalition, several bootstrap missions have been launched to help raise the sustainable tech level, but it is slow going. Some of the problems stem from the stubbornness of the current Lord Regent, Delvin Garett. It seems that Garett is unwilling to ask for help from the Aubaine Relief Teams on the planet for fear that he will show his dependence on Aubaine. While the Lord Regent has been assured that this will not be the case, he still holds his opinion. Lord Regent Garett has however allowed Aubaine teams to help his people in lifting the tech level of the planet.


Economics

Agriculture on Phoebus is revolves around the Durga, a large lizard looking beast. The Durga is actually warm blooded, but its tough leathery hide and long tail, make it look more like a Terran lizard than anything else. The durga is a marsupial, nursing its young in a pouch on the underside of the female. The durgas are omnivores they will scour the landscape, eating anything and everything in their path. The residents have to be very careful what they leave near a durga, because the durga will try to eat anything. Many a tourist have lost their holovid bags, while filming a durga herd.

Almost all clothing on the planet is make from durga hide. There are several reasons for this. The durga hide makes very sturdy clothing providing warmth and protection from the elements and at the same time is very resistant to wear. Also there are not large quantities of plants to extract comfortable cloth from. The soil is rocky and shallow and Phoeban agriculture desperately lacks enough of the equipment needed to effectively till the soil. Even the native plants have a hard time growing. What plant that does grow is fairly hostile to human life. It has a quite different biochemistry and very little of it is edible. The Phoebans have found a small tuber, bleckban, and a weedy grain, kalea, that are edible to humans; however, these plants are difficult to grow domestically and scarce in the wild.

Phoeban agriculture is very scattered. There are many small gardens in the city, which are tended by the unemployed. They careful tend these plots, fertilizing the soil, with treated human waste and anything else that would help supply needed nutrients. There are farms outside the city. These mainly raise durgas. Durga ranching is effective but slow because the lack of adequate riding animals on Phoebus. Phoeban "Lizardboys" have to either ride the lethargic animals themselves or walk. This limits herd size and makes cross country durga drives very difficult. A small number of horses do exist but they are difficult to feed on the scarce grains available.

There is not enough durga breeding stock or farming equipment to allow an expansion of farming under the manor system. The Phoeban citizens are also unwilling to give up their control over the land. Their response is to provide a bare subsistence ration to the urban jobless. The RC is trying to persuade the citizens to undertake land-reform, but it is slow going. The Citizen's contend that what they need is not more TL-0 agriculture but more TL-3 or even 4 agriculture. Further, they believe the RC should focus on developing Phoeban industry to the point that the manors will have enough equipment to bring all of their land under cultivation.

In the meantime, RC is trying to encourage a practice of the urban poor that has existed since the collapse. Areas of the old city are cleared of rubble, to reclaim the few TL-12 materials that Phoeban industry is capable of re-using. The work is mostly done by the poor who sell it for a tiny amount. As areas are cleared, the local inhabitants plant urban gardens to supplement the bland lizard broth and cheese they receive from the Citizens. It is all TL-0/1 agriculture, but the RC hopes that if more people could be moved out of the city, they might be able to produce enough to support themselves.

The RC has launched a bootstrap mission to Phoebus. The mission has started a small school in the city to educate the Phoeban children. The mission is also involved in helping educate the farmers in better agriculture techniques. The Hivers of the Seabridge Nest on Ra have recently introduced a few new plant varieties that should grow in the poor soil. This is the first year of crops for the new strains, so the success of the project is not yet known.

The bootstrap mission is made up of personnel from Aubaine, and Helios. The Helios personnel are able to bring a unique perspective to the work. They come from a planet that has a technological level only a bit above that of Phoebus. While the Aubani can be arrogant about their technological superiority, the Heliosians are very humble and glad to help their fellow reformers. This helps ease the tensions that might arise between the Centrist Phoebans and the personnel from the two Federalist worlds.

Most outside observers feel that the Phoebans live fairly miserable lives, but the Phoebans have grown used to their lifestyle, and have developed a society wide contentment. This is starting to change, as the people see what the rest of the RC is like. The people are starting to put pressure on the Council of Citizens to increase the quality of the life on Phoebus. The non-citizens want some of the technological devices that they see offworlders using.

The Council of Citizens does not have any excess money, to buy expensive off world luxury items. They realize that if the non-citizens want off world goods, that the non-citizens will have to work more. Most non-citizens are used to not working, and are loath to change this. The Council has started to pressure the RC to give them more assistance. The Council is upset that many resources are being spent on planets in the Wilds that are already better off than Phoebus. The RC is willing to help but wants the Council to institute some reforms. The Council, however, is unwilling to start changing the very foundations of their civilization, and many of the RC advisors are becoming increasingly frustrated by the Council's stubbornness.


Culture

Elan Diego is the capital of the planet; about five thousand people make it their home. It surrounds the destroyed remnant of the pre-Collapse starport. The Royal Aircraft Company has created a new starport, little more than a bare patch of dirt, it does possess a well and pumping station to provide unrefined fuel to visiting starships. The company also runs balloon and dirigible flights across the planet. The dirigibles are steam powered and quite distinctive. To the few tourists who come to the world, they are quaint retrotech vehicles; to the natives they are the most advanced means of getting from here to there. About two-thirds of the planetary population lives in Elan Diego, the rest are mainly farmers in the surrounding territory.

There are about 3000 "under-employed" in the city of Elan Diego They work gardening and salvaging materials from the city ruins with primitive home-made hand tools. This accounts for about 90% of Phoebus's material inputs but only a tiny fraction of its agricultural output. The rest of the materials input comes from a few very small mines and some timber cutting just outside the city, which are run professionally.

The Phoebans are out of arable land around the city. All of the coastal and mountain areas are being cultivated or used for durga farms and the intervening hill and canyon country is too rugged to be worth farming. The mountains could be more intensively cultivated by adding laborers, but this is the only area for agricultural expansion since all the land is already being used.

Even working every available acre of the country-side as well as all the free patches of ground in the city, the Phoeban laborers do not eat well. Their diet consists principally of the bland native tubers, rough grains grown in the coastal flatlands, and durga-milk cheese made in the mountains. Most often the cheese is made into a thin curd-type food, to minimize the effort in producing it, and to make it more filling than solid cheese. Feeding the population with dairy products becomes very difficult in the summer when high temperatures increase the risk of spoilage during transport. These staple foods are supplemented with small amounts of durga meat, fresh during the autumn slaughter and dried or salted the rest of the year. The Citizens eat somewhat better, with fresh milk from their private animals, a wider array of vegetables from their gardens, and more meat. The staples of their diet, however, remain the same as the laborers.

More laborers are not used to increase output in the mountain durga pastures because of the lack of adequate housing. The harsh winter and summer weather of Phoebus make proper housing a life-and-death issue. Workers are imported from the city during the spring birthing season and the autumn slaughter of adolescent males. (Males do not give milk, and only a few are needed for breeding so the rest are slaughtered fairly young before the meat becomes inedibly tough.) The temporary workers endure miserable conditions in tents, but are needed to get the work done.

Housing is one of the planet's biggest problems. Since the Collapse, the population has been living in the remaining buildings in the city. Even with the massive population drop since the Collapse, the devastation from that period and the intervening years of decay have left very few habitable buildings. There simply are not enough Phoeban construction crews to maintain all of the old city's buildings. The housing situation in the capital has stabilized around the communal living buildings, with the scant excess resources being devoted to building more permanent housing in the mountains. This currently amounts to housing for only one additional worker per month.

As pressing as the housing problem is, the Council of Citizens has determined that the best solution to Phoebus' problems is to develop the planet's industrial base, even if that means not being able to improve the housing situation in the short-term. The disgruntled among the Phoeban laborers complain that this is because the Citizens all live in their own homes, but most laborers trust the plans of the Citizens. They feel that the Citizens have succeeded in keeping them feed and housed so far, and they are willing to trust them for the future. In practice, this means that the Citizen farmers are providing food for the Citizen industrialists' workers and miners with the promise of later repayment in industrial goods and housing. The goal is to reach the point that such a settlement could be equipped. With continual industrial reinvestment and help from the RC, this should be possible in less than a decade.


Blacksmith's Daughter

The Blacksmith's Daughter is one the finest restaurant on Phoebus. This ranking is helped somewhat by the fact that there are only two restaurants on Phoebus and the other, the Taproom, is a low class dive. The Blacksmith's Daughter mainly caters to the few offworlders who come to Phoebus. Phoebus is becoming a crossroads of the Coalition, but most of these ships refuel at the gas giant and proceed on their way. Occasionally, however, a ship does have to land for supplies, or for an emergency.

The Daughter serves a variety of native foods. The chef, Tona Flenta has created several unique ways of preparing durga which are quite tasty. The restaurant has a sizable garden and it grows many offworld fruits and vegetables. Local hunters provide several different types of fresh game that Flenta prepares.

The Daughter is a large prewar mansion of that survived the Collapse in remarkable shape. The dining room continues to serve as the dining room of the restaurant, and several other downstairs rooms are available as private dining rooms. The upstairs has been turned into an inn. The Blacksmith's Daughter has 20 rooms for rent. Power is supplied by a small water wheel that turns a generator. This supplies enough power to light electric light bulbs, which must be imported from off world.

The Daughter is owned and operated by Hsing Hsu Jones. For those guests who want to see a bit more of the planet, Jones organizes hiking and hunting trips to the Irontooth mountains, as well as the occasional deep-sea fishing trip. Many visiting ship's crewmen have been able to boast of catching a (NAME OF the BIG FISHY BEAST). Jones has also found that during the winter the Ironfoot Mountains offer some very good skiing. He tries to organize a ski trip once every 30 days during the winter. He would like to buy a small chairlift from offworld and build a small ski lodge, but he does not have enough money right now, so he is looking for an offworld investor.


SOCIETY

Society on Phoebus is divided along class lines. About ten percent of the populace are Citizens, and thus members of the Council of Citizens. Citizenship is based on hereditary, but both parents must be citizens for the distinction to pass to their children. Citizens usually strongly discourage their children from marrying non-citizens for this reason. The Council can vote on a simple majority to grant citizenship to a non-citizen. This is usually only done when the non-citizen performs a significant service to the planet or the Council. The rest of the population either works on the manors that the Citizens run, or are unemployed and live in the ruins of the city.

The Citizens rule the planet, with little input from the masses. This is not to say that the non-citizens are slaves of the Citizens. The Citizens feel a genuine obligation to the masses. They are raised from birth to recognize their duty to care and provide for the non-citizens. It is because of this sense of obligation that the Council of Citizens organizes the distribution of food to the unemployed urban dwellers. They organize kitchens that provide durga stew and durga curd cheese to the unemployed. They do not just feed the unemployed; they also fund the construction of public works to entertain the non-citizens. The most impressive is the massive public bath facility in downtown Elan Diego. It is made of freshly quarried marble, and decorated with relief carvings of the history of the planet. The baths can hold almost five hundred people at once. It is a favorite gathering place to relax, and whittle away the day. The baths took over twenty years to construct and are the pride of all Phoebans. Offworld cynics claim that the Citizens offer these tokens to keep the masses from uprising, and that the only reason they created a public bath, is because they were sick of smelling the unwashed masses.

The Citizens also produce plays that are performed roughly every ten days. The plays often have a political moral, that promotes the status quo. Since the resumption of interstellar contact, the Council of Citizens has occasionally hired offworlder play companies to tour the area. Since Phoebus does not have a great deal of surplus funds, the off world acts they do manage to get are often second rate, but the non-citizens do not mind, just the chance to see offworlders is exciting. Acts featuring exotic animals are very popular.

The Council of Citizens is lead by the Lord Regent who is holding the planet while the subsector duke is unavailable. Unfortunately the subsector duke and the entire feudal system was destroyed in the Collapse, but the people on Phoebus, have not bothered to change their government to suit the present. The Council holds monthly meetings at which they vote on issues brought to their attention by the Lord Regent. Lord Delvin Garrett is the ruling lord regent; he lives in Stonecurtain Keep. It is not the primitive building that it sounds like, but rather an impressive a pre-collapse mansion.

Citizens live in large manor houses, while employed non-citizens live in large communal housing near the manor. The more unfortunate unemployed live in shanties constructed of materials salvaged from the remains of the city. The large communal housing was originally pre-collapse warehouses. Few other antebellum buildings survived the collapse. The warehouses have been subdivided into smaller compartments with makeshift partitions, and crude walls. Privacy is very rare in the communal houses. This is not to say life is miserable, the non-citizens have adapted to the lack of privacy, and have formed large pseudo families. All adults in a given building share in the upbringing of the children, and there is always someone to talk to, or lend a helping hand. Some outsiders have suggested that given a few hundred years the non citizens would have degenerated into a primitive tribal society.

Life in the Manor houses is much more what outsiders find to be normal. Each Manor is occupied by an individual family, each focusing on an industry. Most Manorís are involved in agriculture, but some are involved with light manufacturing, such as wagon making, woodworking, etc. The citizens organize the non-citizens into work details, and in general are the bosses.

While it appears on the surface that the Citizens live a life of leisure while the non-citizens toil away, in actuality the citizens do not live that much better than the non-citizens. They do live in private dwellings, get more flavorful food, and are able to afford cloth garments, but there simply is not enough surplus capital to provide large amounts of luxury goods. The Citizens also work much harder than the non-citizens. The non-citizens are content with the arrangement, and resent offworlders telling them that they should change things.


POLITICS

Phoebus is the most conservative world in the Coalition. The Council of Citizens believes that most of the resources of the RC, should be focused on developing its member states, rather than rushing off into the Wilds.

Phoebus maintains a small military force of about 300 soldiers. Most of the soldiers are armed with polearms and muskets. The Army has two platoons of durga cavalry. The durga are not very quick, and they are slow to accelerate, but once they get moving, they are hard to stop. The durgas are also trained to put its cavernous maw to good use. Like every other Coalition world, Phoebus makes some contribution to the RC military, in their case they have sent a contingent of military cooks. They are currently serving at the Marine training grounds on Aubaine.

Since there are no enemy nations to fight against, the Phoeban military primarily serves to protect the planet against raiders from the stars. At least that is what they claim, but in reality, they would be hard pressed to fight against a high tech opponent, but no such opponent has ever attacked and with the formation of the Coalition, it is unlikely one ever will. The military does keep busy, acting as a search and rescue force, scouting out the territory and marking potential hazards such as landslides, avalanche zones, etc. They also act as the planets police force, arresting lawbreakers and usually sentencing them to hard labor. There isn't much crime, there isn't much worth stealing, most crimes are crimes of passion, and hardly ever result in death.

The durga calvary platoons are the elite units of the Phoeban military. The troops are chosen from the children of citizens. The platoons were created in 1135, soon after the collapse. While the units have never seen combat, they continue to train. They train their mounts to ride in precision formations, and often put on shows in Elan Diego for the Workers. Historically the troopers have been equipped with muskets, lances, and sabers. The government has recently purchased several cases of the RC 7mm ACR (pg 60 RCEG) from Oriflamme. The troopers still train with their muskets; the Citizens do want a back up in case supplies from Oriflamme are cut off, for what ever reasons. The units have also had offers to travel to other worlds of the Coalition, to perform. The Reformation Coalition Service Bureaucracy likes the idea, as it will increase cultural awareness between the worlds of the RC. In addition it will bring in some hard currency to the planet allowing them to purchase offworld products. Another reason is that it will allow the troops to experience advanced technology This will help the planet develop in the long run, as more and more people see the benefits of technological development, they will want to make the necessary sacrifices to achieve it. Or so the ivory tower bureaucrats think, time will tell.


EXTENDED SYSTEM

World Data
Soil Contaminant: Local Dominant Stellar Mass: 1.7
Distance: 2.8 AU Orbital Period: 2.6 years
Rotational Period: 21 hours Eccentricity: 0.0
Density: High Gravity: 0.5
System Detail
Orbit Name UWP Satellite Orbit Satellite UWP
Primary Gregor 412 A F1 V
1 Raffel X-354000-0
2 Burton SGG
Lemke 300 X101000-0
3 Mentor X-441000-0
Tianti 50 X-S00000-0
Aeron 60 X-S00000-0
4 Hrothgar LGG
Clenof 6 X-200000-0
Orange 7 X-400000-0
Blodder 8 X-450000-0
Firestone 10 X-100000-0
Seran 11 X-300000-0
Constainte 12 X-230000-0
Stormy 13 X-S00000-0
Baldwin 25 X-410000-0
5 Collinder LGG
Duncan 3 X-79A000-0
Clem 12 X-400000-0
Phoebus 13 D-267337-3
Dirk 25 X-7B5000-0
6 Grinch LGG
Reggie 7 X-742000-0
Glory 8 X-300000-0
Sleof 10 X-610000-0
Diane 55 X-520000-0
50 AU Gregor 412 B M7 V

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