Prelude: Silence of the Void

The blackness of space is eternal. The distant flickering lights of far off stars are no match for the all devouring void.

Even the light of closer stars is a paltry thing, incapable of illumination beyond their home system.

That which is seen, and that which remains unseen-the eternal duality of space.

Sometimes, the weak light of a single star is enough to usher that which was unseen into the realm of the seen. It happens in a thousand systems, or a million, on a regular basis. Whether these events happen at the same time is impossible to tell, for time is a fickle dimension, immaterial and flexible. In the streams of time, there is no such thing as an impartial observer.

Occasionally, things do happen together, in defiance of all of probability. Here, as though to spite the uncounted miles that span the distance between them, two stars rise.

The first casts its rays upon a planet of the dead. There are ruined cities, victims of the unrelenting throes of time. As the sun crests the horizon, the towering buildings are thrown into stark relief, their shadows reaching of the ground like a thousand fingers.

Above the planet, the light strikes something else. It is hard, angular, and battered. One end is open to space, the edges sheared away cleanly by some unimaginable force.

Here, on a broken wreck above a dead planet, the silence is that of a tomb.

Elsewhere, the other sun rises. It showcases a planet free from the scars of war that decorate so many others.

The people of the planet bear memories of a war a century gone. With time, the scars faded, but some things cannot be forgotten, and fewer still forgiven.

It is a jewel in space, a marble in the sky, the crowning achievement of a race.

Other planets had been settled longer, boasted greater cities, and incomparable natural beauty, but this planet was unique.

A cluster of lights drifted through the darkness, making their way toward the planet.

Here, at the pride of hundred worlds, the silence is that of anticipation.

A/N: I know, it's short. That's just my style for this sort of opening. I have most of the next chapter written, so expect that soon (Though it may be longer than I'd like, since I'll be out of town for a while).