Did start this as part of my First Contact series, but it grew too complex. Full list of the crossovers at the end, but consider it a game to see how many you can correctly guess.
I dedicate this story to the inanity that is war, and those who spend their lives trying to cure it.
It all started, as these things, often do, a long time ago, back before even the myths and legends were born. The universe is a lot older than most people could even dream, and is governed by certain rules. The question as to whether there is a Higher Power behind it all has not yet been answered, but there is an unmistakable pattern in the chaos, as if the universe was trying to regulate itself.
Everything in nature works in cycles, including the rise of certain key archetypes, time after time: the fearless hero, the mysterious stranger, the kind-hearted rogue, the evil overlord, and the wise sage. They arise, time after time, never the same, yet connected somehow. It can sometimes be hard to tell just who is playing which part, but the game remains the same.
What is known is that a long time ago, shortly after the universe was born, there arose two powers, the First Ones, and they made war upon each other. Entire galaxies burned as they battled not just for supremacy, but the extermination of the other side. The concepts of 'good' or 'evil' can not be applied, as neither side one; the war ended in a stalemate, both sides battered nearly to the point of near extinction.
Fear of what had almost happened made them turn back upon themselves, retreating to a few small worlds each, separated by the vast expanse of intergalactic space. There, hidden, they forgot much of what had come before, and some things that should not have been forgotten, were lost. History became legend, legend became myth, until the war passed from memory.
Time passed, the universe began to heal itself, and the two powers again began to explore, reaching back out across the stars until they again met, and the long, terrible war started all over again. Many other, less advanced, races found themselves cough up in the madness, and seeking their own survival, picked sides and so the war intensified. But again, neither side was able gain an advantage, and the conflict fell into a cycle of open war, followed by a comparative long period of relative peace as both sides rearmed and made their plans. This cycle continued without end until the Younger Races decided that they would not be pawns in the games of others, and refused to fight.
This ended the first war once and for all, but it sowed the seeds for later conflicts. In the end, they encountered a weapon left over from the First War; a benevolent force that had evolved, setting out to remake the rest of creation in its own image. Bringing together all their might and knowledge, the Younger Races created the single most powerful weapon ever seen, and retreating to a place of safety, burned their galaxy free of all other life.
In awe of what they had created, many of the Younger Races fled, taking off after the First Ones, leaving one of their number behind to guard against any possible resurgence of the dreaded weapon. But the struggle against the new enemy had drained the remaining race, and they fell from their lofty heights, forgetting everything that had happened, retreating to just one world on the edge of the galaxy. The slow crawl back to greatness took time, allowing an alliance of other races to emerge and pick over the bones of a hundred battlefields and take the greatness for themselves.
Believing that they had been chose to complete a holy task, they set out to discover all the lost secrets, and in time came across the descendants of the remaining Younger Race. Threatened by the truth, their readers proclaimed a holy war, and set their people to wipe out the children of the Younger Race. Again, worlds burned and died as the war spread, until both sides came across the abandoned weapon their forbearer's had given their greatness to construct. Each believing that it could win the war for them, they battled to control it, until one side realised the true power and danger it represented, and sent its greatest hero to destroy the weapon.
The mission was a success, and again a kind of peace took hold. But nature adheres a vacuum, and other, darker forces, hidden since the dawn of time, sprung forth, sending all civilisation crashing back down. From the ashes they created something new and terrifying, but they forgot that the will of the Younger Race was still strong in its descendants, and they fought back, turning their oppressors weapons against them, forging a new weapon and bonded it with one of their own. Sometimes alone, but often with others, the Weapon moved down through the ages, always battling to save its kin from the forces of chaos and oppression. Some of the Younger Races took pity on the Weapon and used their powers to help it, always covertly to avoid interfering in their lost allies re-birth.
Over time, the world the battle took place on became uninhabitable, and again summoning all their might, the survivors set off across the stars to find a new home. Aided by knowledge passed to them by the watching Younger Races, they made a new home, remaking entire worlds to their liking. Safe in their refuge away from the oppressive dark forces, they slowly rebuilt their civilisation and set themselves on the long path to their long forgotten glory. Two opposing ideologies emerged, one demanding obedience and order, the other freedom and choice.
The war that followed was a mire skirmish compared to what had gone before, but it was enough to blacken worlds, and in the end the forces of order and obedience won out, at least for a time. When the war restated, less than a single life-time later, it threatened to extinguish the one last light of hope and civilisation. Their long forgotten Guardians stepped in, casting down both sides in the war and wiping the memory of the long war. Yet again, history became legend, legend became myth, names of people and even planet changing until they became blurred, the truth hidden behind religious beliefs and poorly translated rhetoric.
Shaken by how they had treated one of their own, the Younger Races vowed only to watch, never interfering. Silently they observed their charge as they yet again started on the long, slow path back to the stars, fighting many wars along the way. Finding the universe a cold, lonely place, they created new life, at first to fight their wars for them, but later to act as companions. But they made them too smart, too quick, and too many, until the say when their creation turned against them. Fearing that further interference could do more harm than good, the Younger Races stood by and watched as the war raged, ending in an uneasy ceasefire. Travelling deep into space, the newly free Creations start to peace everything back together, and build their own religion around what they find.
It was only a temporary peace, lulling the Creators into a false sense of security before the war started all over again in yet another Holy War, continuing the Eon's old cycle of death and destruction. Billions died as the war dessicated the last few worlds capable of supporting life for hundreds of light-years. The few survivors, huddling together in their remaining ships, took off again into the dark night of space, hunted and alone.
A man sits in a room, chained to a chair, looking across an empty table at a woman dressed in a ragged uniform, a faint smile on his face as he explains to her that everything that is happening has happened before, not quite realising just how right he is.
And the crossovers were: Babylon 5, Halo, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Firefly and Battlestar Galactica.