Belakane

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Description:

Millions of years ago, the slow orbital decay of two planets in Belakane’s star system finally reached its catastrophic conclusion when the planets collided with each other head-on. Both worlds were smashed to bits, leaving behind a massive asteroid field that gradually spread itself around the star system, occupying the planets’ former orbital paths. The asteroid field even encompassed the next-nearest planet, Belakane, surrounding it in a rocky ring. Many chunks of rock were caught in Belakane’s gravity and fell to its surface, exploding in clouds of dust and fracturing Belakane’s crust; the dust clouds blocked out the sun for thousands of years, killing off almost all life on Belakane’s surface. When the pounding ceased and Belakane emerged from the darkness millions of years later, it had been profoundly changed. Now it was mostly barren, with life only beginning to return, its sky filled with clouds of rock. Some spaceflight-capable Ghost Children settled there shortly thereafter, followed by human colonization. The humans immediately saw Belakane’s potential and wasted no time indenturing the locals, enlisting them to build sprawling refinery complexes on Belakane’s rocky plains. The asteroids in space above, the remnants of two dead planets, contained immeasurable mineral wealth that was relatively easy to access, and being in the midst of the asteroid cloud made Belakane the ideal location for refineries and processing plants. Nowadays Belakane is a dour, polluted industrial world, its once-breathtaking view of space now obscured by noxious clouds, its rivers poisoned and its soil tainted with heavy metals and toxic chemicals. Indentured Ghost Children are lucky to live into their twenties before succumbing to disease, poisoning, or one of the frequent accidents at the refineries. However much of a hell this world is for the Indies, Belakane can make a crew very rich very quickly if they have even the most ramshackle starship and can stake a claim in the asteroid fields above.