BUCK GORDON-a sci-fi universe by Newmarduk
Buck Gordon was born in 1989 A.D. By 2020, he had become an astronaut and a pioneer in piloting a new breed of spaceships that utilized a new type of gravity-control tech that had been invented in 2017. This gravity control both propelled spaceships through space at speeds approaching the speed of light and provided an artificial, onboard source of gravity for spaceships, space stations, and colonies on celestial bodies with a gravity less than that of Earth. Spaceships powered by gravity-control tech traveled up to 99.999999 percent the speed of light, providing the effects of time dilation, in with time passed far slowly on board a ship than in the surrounding universe. It took a spaceship only a few days tp travel up to one or two light years while one or two years passed by in the surrounding universe. By 2025, the nations of Earth had united under three main governments: the North American Union (composed of the United States, Canada, and Mexico), the Eurasian Dominate (composed of Russia, China, Mongolia, Korea, and Japan with the Japanese emperor as a symbolic monarch), and the United Earth Alliance (composed of those Earth nations not within the North American Union or the Eurasian Dominate). Two private corporations dominated the manufacture of gravity-control tech and spaceships: the Astrotech Cartel and the North American-Eurasian Mercantile (called NAEM for short). The Astrotech Cartel and NAEM both also pioneered the development of cold-fusion reactors for electrical power, the cloning of humans and chimeras (animal-human hybrids), artificial intelligence for robots and computers (with A.I. personalities able to be downloaded between stationary computer systems and mobile robot bodies), energy weapons (including the use of lasers and particle beams as well as projectile weapons-both missles and slug-throwing guns-using gravity-control tech), and nuclear dampers (which nullified the detonation of nuclear weapons with a radius of up to six miles in every direction). It is noted that by 2035 Buck Gordon had become an advocate for the civil rights of human and chimera clones and A.I. machines, insisting that they should have the same civil rights as natural-born humans, although at this time Gordon was largely off Earth promoting space exploration of the local solar system. The North American Union, Eurasian Dominate, and United Earth Alliance all had elected governments (with special representation for chimera clones and A.I. machines; human clones voted for the same representatives as natural-born humans), with the most dominate political parties in all three regimes affiliated with the Astrotech Cartel or NAEM and also supporting a degree of civil rights to human clones, chimeras, and even A.I. machines. However, the so-called human supremacist parties under all three regimes were rapidly gaining strength, advocating that A.I. machines and chimeras (some extremist factions even wanted to extend such views to human clones) should be treated as non-citizens, with radical factions in the human-supremacist parties advocating the abolition of the cloning of chimeras (and sometimes even human clones) and requiring that all new robots and computers be programmed to be non-intelligent (and sometimes even advocating the destruction of existing machines capable of holding A.I. personalities, effectively destroying the A.I. personalities themselves). By 2040, new genetic engineering had created races of chimeras capable of breeding naturally (without artificial cloning techniques) and passing their human-level intelligence down to their children and their descendants: neo-apes (including neo-chimps, neo-gorillas, and neo-orangutangs), neo-dogs (bipedal like humans and larger than true dogs), neo-cats (bipedal like humans and larger than true cats), and avoids (bipedal like humans, larger than true birds, but like true birds capable of flight, possessing true feathers, and reproducing with actual eggs). The creation of a new subspecies of human called homo superior that could reproduce naturally (and even interbreed with normal humans), was stronger than normal humans, and could use the powers of the mind including telepathy (broadcasting of thoughts and mind-reading) and telekinesis (mental manipulation of physical matter) also occurred. Consequently, the creation of naturally-reproducing chimeras and homo superior caused a sudden decline in the cloning of humans and chimeras, though it did not abolish it completely. The human-supremacist political parties naturally view naturally-breeding chimeras from a racist standpoint but were divided on the question of homo superior. In 2042, a treaty between the Astrotech Cartel, NAEM, the North American Union, the Eurasian Dominate, and United Earth Alliance, in which Buck Gordon helped to broker, laid out the division of the local solar system out to the Main Belt (the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter). All space stations in Earth orbit and the "near" side of Luna (Earth's moon and the side facing Earth) were granted to the United Earth Alliance. The "far" side of Luna (the side not facing the mother planet) was granted to the Astrotech Cartel. The planets Mercury and Venus were granted to the Eurasian Dominate. The planet Mars and it's two moons were granted to the North American Union. The asteroids in the Main Belt and the mini-planet Ceres were granted in NAEM. The rest of the known universe (which the treaty specified as the gas giant planets, the Trojan asteroids in Jupiter's orbit, the moons of the gas giant planets, the Centaur asteroids between the orbits of Saturn and Neptune, the ice-and-rock planets and asteroids of the Kuiper Belt and scattered disc and Oort Cloud, and any celestial body outside Earth's solar system) were declared "free space" to be claimed on a first-come, first-ownership basis. By 2050, two new major religions had emerged: the monotheistic United God Movement and the polytheistic Neo-Pagan Church, both of which accepted cloning, the emergence of chimeras and homo superior, and A.I. personalities in robots and computers. Advocates of older, declining faiths often opposed cloning, A.I., chimeras, and homo superior as violating the will of God or the gods, and so by 2060 these so-called "fundamentalists" were exiling themselves from Earth to establish colonies, generally on planets and asteroids in the Kuiper Belt, scattered disc, and Oort Cloud, or even exploring and colonizing outside Earth's solar system. It should be noted that the human-supremacist political parties on Earth still had plenty of secular supporters as well as from the declining population on Earth of the fundamentalists. In 2064 and 2065, a brief civil war between the human-supremacist parties in the North American Union and their supporters in the military and law-enforcement forces against a coalition of the other political parties, the United God Movement, the Neo-Pagan Church, and their own military and police allies saw a defeat for the human-supremacists and a ban on their political organizations. The North American Union became a monarchy with Buck Gordon as the first Emperor as Buck Gordon the 1st. His successors, basically human clones created with the genetic material oirginating from the body of the immediately-preceeding Buck Gordon, themselves were named "Buck Gordon" followed by a number indicating their position in the succession of Buck Gordon emperors (i.e. Buck Gordon the 23rd would be 23rd Emperor of the North American Empire). The North American Union hense became the North American Empire. The ruling monarch co-shared political and governmental power with the Imperial Senate, which had a combination of elected, appointed, hereditary, and purchased-with-money seats. Humans and chimeras of all types and certain robots and computers with A.I. were all represented in the Senate. Civil wars in the Eurasian Dominate and United Earth Alliance pitting human-supremacist parties against their rivals from 2069 through 2072 likewise saw a decisive defeat for the human-supremacists and similar bans on their parties. By 2075, the human-supremacists were leaving Earth for the Kuiper Belt, scattered disc, Oort Cloud, and even outside Earth's solar system in order to found new colonies like the fundamentalists. (Note that the moons of Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune as well as the Trojan asteroids in Jupiter's orbit and the Centaur asteroids between Saturn and Neptune by now were aggressively being claimed by the North Americans, Eurasians, United Earth Alliance, the Astrotech Cartel, and NAEM), although a few colonies of fundamentalists and human supremacists did exist in the Trojan and Centaur asteroids or even on the moons of the gas giant planets.) The original Buck Gordon abdicated his throne in 2077, and later died of old age in 2081. His successor and clone, Buck Gordon the 2nd, from 2079 to 2081 was ruler of both the North American Empire and Eurasian Dominate (though the actual political power in the Dominate was in the hands of an elected Parliament and Prime Minister and Cabinet elected by such Parliament) because the last ruler of the old Japanese imperial line just died without an heir. Buck Gordon the 2nd was forced by popular pressure in the Eurasian Dominate to step down from the Dominate throne, which was filled by a chimera clone combining human, reptilian (i.e. snake and lizard), and bird DNA called the Imperial Dragon. From 2081 onward, the throne of the Eurasian Dominate was filled by a succession of Imperial Dragons, basically clones created from the genetic material from the immediately-preceeding ruler sitting on the Eurasian throne. The planets Venus and Mars by the end of the 21st Century were sbjected to efforts to terraform them into Earth-like conditions with the help of ice-and-rock asteroids from the ranks of the Centaurs and Kuiper Belt plus genetically-tailored microorganisms created by the Astrotech Cartel (in the case of Venus and in conjuction with the Eurasian Dominate) and NAEM (in a joint project with the North American Empire in the case of Mars). Although the North American Empire, United Earth Alliance, and Eurasian Dominate all respected religious freedom, they in the early 22nd Century decided to promorte state-sponsored faiths (although still respecting the rights of non-believers). In 2101, a sect of the United God Movement became the official religion of the North American Empire, with the ruling Buck Gordon declared to be ruling with the mandate of the One True God. In 2106, another sect of the United God Movement became the state faith in the United Earth Alliance, with the UEA's elected Prime Minister claimed to be governing with the aid of the True God. By 2120, the United God Movement had fragmented into at least 21 different sects while the Neo-Pagan Church splintered into at least 11 sects. Branches of both the United God Movement and the Neo-Pagan Church received official sanction in the Eurasian Dominate by 2115. The official Eurasian branch of the Neo-Pagan Church proclaimed the ruling Imperial Dragon to be a real god along with it's other deities while the official branch of the United God Movement in the Dominate proclaimed the ruling Imperial Dragon to be a living incarnation of the One True God. The original, orthodox branches of both the United God Movement and the Neo-Pagan Church both denounced the state-sponsored sects of their respective religions as perversions of the real truth, though. In 2145, the seat of government of the North American Empire, including the throne of the ruling Buck Gordon the 3rd, the meeting chamber of the Imperial Senate, and the headquarters of the armed forces and civilian administration were moved to the new city of Cronos on the planet Mars, and henseforth the North American Empire became officially the Martian Empire by 2147. A war between the Martian Empire and the Eurasian Dominate (under the rule of the second Imperial Dragon) in 2150 and 2151 saw the Martian Empire lose control of the North American continent to the Eurasians. Buck Gordon the 3rd committed suicide and was replaced by the newly cloned Buck Gordon the 4th. Meanwhile, the Eurasian Dominate officially renamed itself (in 2154) the Dragon Empire. The capital of the Dragon Empire, including the throne of the Imperial Dragon, the office of Prime Minister and his cabinet of ministers, the elected parliament, and the military forces and civilian administrations to the new Imperial Sun City under the surface of the planet Mercury in 2160. Violence on Earth caused by two extremist organizations, the Cyber Nation (which viewed intelligent robots and computers as superior to "meat" or any type of organic life) and the Anti-Human Party (basically a coalition of chimeras of all races and certain A.I.-dominated machines who were prejudiced against all humans but homo superior in particular) occuered frequently during the latter half of the 22nd Century and into the 23rd. The Cyber Nation and Anti-Human Party not only faced the armed might of the police and military of the Dragon Empire and United Earth Alliance, but also the security forces of the Astrotech Cartel and NAEM trying to protect their on-Earth corporate assets and religious militias associated with various sects of the United God Movement and Neo-Pagan Church. Meanwhile, the Martian Empire (and to a lesser extent the Dragon Empire, the Astrotech Cartel, and NAEM) was concentrating on deep-space exploration and colonization, especially in the Kuiper Belt and the Oort Cloud with their ice-and-rock planets and asteroids, coming into occasional encounters and even violent conflicts with religious fundamentalist and human-supremacist colonies. (Outside Earth's solar system would take several years to reach even Bernard's Star and the Alpha/Proxima Centauri triple-star system even with ships equiped with time-dilation drives. The Oort Cloud at the edge of the local solar system would take mere months to reach with a time-dilation-equiped spacecraft.) In 2208, the United Earth Alliance amended it's constitution to grant near-dictatorial powers to a new Committee of Public Safety (dominated by military commanders and law-enforcement leaders), while reducing the democratically-elected parliament to a mere shadow of it's former self, in order to deal with the violence caused by the Cyber Nation and the Anti-Human Party. In 2219, various sects of the United God Movement and Neo-Pagan Church (including the official United God Movement sect of the United Earth Alliance) in which the God of the United God Movement was proclaimed the one true deity, the official gods of the Neo-Pagan Church were reduced to angels serving the true God or demons opposing him, tolerance of all sentients (including natural-born humans, human clones, chimeras, and A.I. machines), and the use of scriptures used by both the United God Movement and Neo-Pagan Church. This new organized faith was called the Church of Unity. By 2250, Venus had been terraformed to approximate Earth-like conditions, including the development of animal and planet life on the Venusian surface. In 2252, a treaty between the United Earth Alliance, Dragon Empire, Cyber Nation, and Anti-Human Party granted the Cyber Nation control of the northern hemisphere of Venus and the Anti-Human Party control of the southern half of the same planet in return for the Cyber Nation's and Anti-Human Party's renunciation of violence. A political reform (also in 2252) required that candidates for the elected parliament of the United Earth Alliance be nominated by three official political parties: the Party of Order (having close ties to the ruling Committee of Public Safety), the Party of God (being the official political arm of the Church of Unity), and the Earth Democratic Party (a pro-business party backed by various private corporations including the Astrotech Cartel and NAEM).
CONSTRUCTION OF THE JUMPWEB (2273-3000)
In 2273, a joint project of NAEM and the Astrotech Cartel saw the invention of an instant means of genuine faster-than-light space flight: the jumpgates. Each jumpgate worked as half of a pair of gates to provide an instant means of FTL travel across the Milky Way galaxy. Of course, in order to establish the web/network of jumpgates, spaceships with the old time-dilation technology had to be utilized to reach other stars outside Earth's solar system in order to establish jumpgates. The technology was leased out to various factions (The Martian and Dragon Empires, United Earth Alliance, Church of Unity, United God Movement and Neo-Pagan Church sects, Cyber Nation, Anti-Human Party, and even old-style fundamentalist and human-supremacist communities) and the rights to construction jumpgates was sold to such factions eventually, too. By 3000 A.D., the borders of known space had reached up to 40,0000 light years from the planet Earth.