Sunday, May 1, 2016

The IX Series - World Building Part 7

As I mentioned in previous blogs, Exordium of Tears was never originally going to be written. The IX was a one-off story about a group of heroes snatched from Earth at the moment of their deaths to go and fight someone else's battle on the far side of the galaxy.
When I realized my publishers were serious in their desire to see an extension to this tale, I had to revert to my Plot Book - (A catalog I compile for each novel containing a list of characters, descriptions, archive and traits, maps, sketches, background history, etc) - for help.

Each of my Plot Books is quite detailed, as I usually spend many months researching the histories of the peoples I'll be writing about, along with the setting in which the story will take place: Eg, where they are in the universe; what kind of sun do they have; the size and composition of the planet; what flora and fauna do we find there? And of course, who are the people that populate it.

Remember, I was fortunate with The IX in that our heroes had fantastic enemies - the Horde - and I'd managed to develop quite a background story for them too. BUT - you never really got to witness that in The IX, as the information was for my benefit and something I could dip into when I needed a little extra substance for their scenes.

So, once I knew for certain the Ninth's story was going to expand, I spotted a wonderful opportunity to delve into Arden's history and culture that little bit deeper. In doing so, I could reveal more about the Horde themselves. Where they came from and how they came to be.

By blending the two points together, we'd have an evolving story where our survivors come to a realization that the battle isn't over.
Remember the blurb for Exordium of Tears?

Fight or die.
That simple yet brutal reality is the tenet by which the refugees from Earth – including the fabled lost 9th Legion of Rome; the 5th Company, 2nd Mounted Cavalry Unit; and the Special Forces Anti-Terrorist Team – were forced to live by while the Horde menace existed. Believing that the threat is over, the survivors now yearn to settle down, start families, and reclaim the lives stolen from them.
But such aspirations might remain beyond their reach, for a shadow looms on the rose-tinted horizon of new beginnings.
The release of the re-genesis matrix has done much to foster a restoration of exuberance across Arden. Along with a resurgence in floral and faunal diversity comes the results of splicing the Ardenese and human genomes: transmutation. A metamorphosis of stunning magnitude that not only affects the living, but those still is stasis as well.
Recognizing the emergence of a new hybrid species, the Architect – the arcane AI construct tasked with the preservation of the Ardenese race – responds by unlocking previously hidden and inaccessible areas of the city. It also releases an archive of sealed state secrets. Such revelations are eagerly perused, whereupon a shocking discovery is made.
Prior to the fall, it was common knowledge amongst the Senatum (the highest levels of Arden’s government) that not all the rabid Horde had joined in the rampage across the stars toward Arden.
Realizing that the peril still exists, the newly reformed administration elects to respond in earnest. Existing resources are utilized, suitable candidates are chosen, and a flotilla of ships is sent out to secure, quarantine, and reclaim the outer colonies.
A mammoth and hazardous undertaking. And nowhere more so than at the planet from where the outbreak was known to have originated – Exordium – for there, the ancient Horde are not only supremely evolved and highly organized, but are capable of a level of lethal sophistication, the likes of which has never been witnessed before.
It is into this kiln of incendiary potential that the cream of Arden’s fighting forces is deployed.
Worlds are torn asunder, suns destroyed, and star systems obliterated. Yes, tragedy is forged, in a universe spanning conflict which proves once again that…
Death is only the beginning of the adventure.

That's the concept that immediately sprang out to me, and the building block for what takes place. Now, some parts we've already discussed: 
(The Avenger Class dreadnought - Shadow of Autumn - That was a great module to develop, as much of the action is based on or around that ship). However, there's much more to the story.

Here's a clue:

Next time, we'll start to delve into the different facets that led to Exordium itself - the planet from which the Horde emerged - and the startling environment in which the Horde grew to power. See you then.

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