Crumbling Empire (40k)
List of planets and places of note
Capital of the Araneae sector.
Araneae III is a gas giant comprised of 88% hydrogen, 11% helium and 1% trace elements. Other than the mesmorising beauty the swirling gas clouds provide, the planet has very little to offer. Its five moons, however, are quite the opposite. The moons are believed to have once been part of a planet which died millennia ago. In fact, the moons are so rich in mineral deposits that two of them have been mined to destruction, decaying and being consumed by the gaseous planet. The remaining three moons continue to be mined, but under the watchful eye of the local governor.
The third moon of Araneae III is the smallest of the moons and only contains a small mining base. Little to people know, but on the dark side of the moon is a secret Ordos Xenos research facility. Many decades ago and inquisitor from the Order tracked an alien signal to this system. Although it was feint, he eventually tracked it to this moon where he discovered a Tyranid scout ship deep in the moon’s core. He built a research station around the crashed ship, hoping to learn more about the species. Since then the base has developed and now they are breeding Tyranids to study them, occasionally plucking humans from the mining colonies to assist in their experiments.
Mesothelae is an ever growing space fort. It began as a space station that allowed achor for all trade and a docking berth of all vessels coming into the system. Over time its function changed, becoming less of a staging point for goods into a trading point. All kinds of goods change hands here, and all trading here and for many systems around occur at Mesothelae. Its wealth of trade comes from the stable warp routes coming into the system.
Mesothelae dwarfs what was the original space port, it has been expanded constantly as the trade flowed in. The expansions have been from either intended design to expand cargo space and trading areas, or from ships that reach port too damaged to continue on. Mesothelae has become a city in space, with at its star-ward side the rich and the powerful. At the other side cloaked in constant dark, failing environment systems and old decaying docks the poor scrape by what living they can.
Still nestled at its heart is the star fort, an ancient relic some say date back to before the crusades.
Contained within the system is a large asteroid belt that orbits the star. It was believed to once be a world that was shattered by some kind of cataclysm. Quite what caused an entire planet to fragment is unknown, however it has drawn the keen interest of the Adeptus Mechanicus.
The Adeptus of Mars inhabit the asteroid belt, steadily exporting ore to Mesothelae to pay for exotic materials and equipment from beyond the system, and perhaps the sector.