Sorados Civil War, and much of the planet is a barren shell of its former self as a consequence.
Physical Description Edit
The general appearance of Eileandu resembles parts of Central Scotland and the Highlands. Weather on the planet is characterized by long sunny spells, frequently broken up by torrential rain, or snowstorms in the winter. The climate is temperate at best, but tends to reach into the extremes often; blazing heat in the summer and bitter cold in the winter. Thus it is advisable to bring proper clothing when visiting the planet.
Eileandu has one major continent, which has a T-shape when depicted on a map. This continent is dominated by mountains in the north, grassy plains in the south, and forests all around. There are also several clusters of islands to the south east of the continent, and one large island in the southern ocean.
Most of the planet's primary settlements are concentrated in a large area surrounding the Twin Rivers Region. Eileandu's capital city, South Haven, lies on the south bank of the Desair Abain (South River). There are three other Haven cities in the area: North Haven lies on the north bank of the Tuaid Abain (North River); West Haven straddles this same river a few miles further west; East Haven-the smallest-lies on the northeast coast of the Twin Rivers landmass.
Other major settlements include the conurbation of Diamond Hill (made up of several coal mining towns), the railway town of Balmalquhar, and the dormitory town of Glasmuir. This latter settlement is the best known on Eileandu, due to it being the former home of Leslie Kennedy.
Eileandu has one single moon, which remains uninhabited, in spite of terraforming into an ocean moon. Because its surface is almost entirely covered in water, this moon appears blue in the Eileandu sky.
Eileandu was one of the later planets in the series to be colonized. It was discovered, along with the rest of the Sorados Cluster, in the mid 2550s by a group of Scottish colonists. They settled in the area which would eventually become known as the Twin Rivers Region. Naming the planet Eileandu (derived from a Gaelic term meaning black island), the settlers quickly got to work integrating it into the existing society built up throughout the rest of the developing Sorados Cluster.
After several decades, Eileandu had grown into a bountiful society, contributing to the Cluster through its many exports, such as coal and timber. When the newly-formed Stellar Federation started making noises about taking over the Sorados Cluster in the early 27th Century, Eileandu was among the many planets who stood firm, and pushed to make the Cluster an independent concern.
It was a similar story when the Independent Coalition of Stars was formed a century later. The people of the Sorados Cluster had always been resistant to outside interference, even if it stood by the same ideals as them. After a minor administrative war with the White Moon Cluster, home to the Coalition's capital worlds, a compromise was reached in which the Sorados planets, Eileandu included, were made neutral to either faction.
For the next few centuries, Eileandu would often be considered to be rather behind the times compared to the rest of the Galaxy. This was a deliberate mindset by the population, who preferred long established ideas rather than anything new or innovative.
The most obvious manifestation of this backwardness would have to be in the planet's rather aged railway network, which was still relying mainly on steam power even after virtually everywhere else was dabbling with diesel and electric power. This ended up actually being a stroke of genius by the Eileandu government, for reasons which will become obvious later on.
During the infamous Galactic Wars of the 30th Century, Eileandu was able to largely stay out of the conflict, being a neutral planet. However, by the time the Third Galactic War rolled around in the early 2980s, this neutrality would become the planet's downfall, and to explain this, a little background is necessary.
As previously stated, the Sorados Cluster was a neutral faction, not being affiliated with either the Stellar Federation or the Independent Coalition. However, there had always been people of the opinion that to gain the best protection from enemy invasion, the Cluster should align itself with either of the two factions. When the Third Galactic War broke out in 2983, it fired the arguments up again, as people debated over who to side with, and who to fight against.
Ironically, as the internal debates raged on, the Cluster ended up being able to stay out of the main conflict altogether. Six years went by, until in 2989, when each side decided that enough was enough, and that the other side would have to be taken down, and quick.
Thus began the Sorados Civil War, which raged on concurrently with the Galactic War for the first two years of fighting. However, even when that conflict had ended in 2991, the people of Sorados kept on fighting, and Eileandu was no exception. Social order rapidly degraded; the law of the land was quickly tossed aside, as the population degenerated into murderous savages; it was a case of either survival of the fittest, or no survival at all.
And all that was before the Stellar Federation finally became sick of all the infighting, and stepped in to try and end the War in 2997. They launched an invasion of the Cluster, attacking system by system, planet by planet. They attacked fighters from both sides of the conflict, conscripting the Federation-aligned into their own forces, and executing the Coalition-aligned. When they eventually reached Eileandu, all hell broke loose.
After trying their usual suppression tactics, the Federation then sent troops down to capture and kill the fighters directly, whichever side they were on. Many famous stories have been told of what went on during this time, but the most famous has to be that of when they found the squadron that Leslie Kennedy was part of. For reasons of clarity and sensitivity, the exact details won't be shown here, but to put it simply, Leslie ended up being one of the only survivors.
During the Federation's initial onslaught, they had attacked the planet with nuclear weapons, destroying much of the planet's infrastructure, and causing the remaining population to degrade even further into savages. It also highlighted the reason the government had opted to stick with steam power all those years ago: the electromagnetic pulse of a nuclear explosion fries the circuitry of electrical items, including diesel-electric motors, and renders them inoperable. Steam powered machines, like the locomotives, don't have this problem, and can carry on in more or less the same capacity after an attack.
Eileandu went quiet for the next decade or so, becoming a deadly silent wasteland. The only activities were the actions of what few people were left, and the odd battle or two between them. The Federation made a few more appearances in this time (during one of which Leslie finally left the planet), but they eventually decided for the most part that Eileandu wasn't of great strategic importance to them.
Someone else who once returned to Eileandu was Leslie Kennedy, when she paid a visit in November 3009 to pay her last respects to her late mother Argyll. During that short time period, Leslie ended up reuniting unexpectedly with her younger brother Oliver, who then helped fight back when some Federation troops chose to drop in that same day.
The events of that day highlighted the need for a unified defence on the planet, in case the Federation should try to re-establish their presence on Eileandu. To that end, Leslie's superior, the well known Jaws MacTaggart, has been looking into the possibility of establishing an outpost of the Galactic Liberation Front on the planet, based out of Leslie's old home town of Glasmuir, with Oliver as the head of command.
Eileandu is quiet now, but even as this information is being written down, amazing and important events are on the verge of occurrence...