Make your own free website on Tripod.com

Jewell/Jewell/Spinward Marches

Planetary Data

Expanded Characteristics

Planet Name

Jewell

Size

10,240 kms

Hex

1006

Atmosphere

Standard - Sulfur Compounds

Subsector

Jewell

Hydrographics

76 %

Sector

Spinward Marches

Population

676,157,748

UPP

A777999-C

Government

Impersonal Bureaucracy

Trade Class

Hi In

Law Level

Possession of weapons outside the home prohibited.

Travel Zone

Green

Tech Level

Average Imperial

Affiliation

Imperial

Gravity

0.875

Installations

Navel and Scout base

Temperature

20 C

RICE Data and History

    Near the Imperium's extreme spinward tip lies Jewell, capital of the Jewell subsector and for centuries the first line of defense against incursions by the Zhodani Consulate. While relations with the Zhodani have improved greatly in recent decades, Jewell still resembles nothing so much as a massive military encampment. Almost six centuries of living on the 'front lines' has given the inhabitants of Jewell a unique, if somewhat grim outlook.

    Jewell was settled in the early 300's by colonists fleeing from the Lishun and Vland Sectors. The colonists, of mixed Solomani-Vilani heritage, initially settled on Palique (0609 / Mora), before religious tensions forced them to more on to Jewell. The original colony grew slowly, hampered largely by respiratory problems caused by volcanic outgassing. The discovery of unusually rich lanthanum deposits on the planet's eastern hemisphere sparked a huge influx of immigrants and business investment. Jewell also became the jumping-off point for further settlement in the Chronor subsector, and beyond the Spinward Marches in the Foreven Sector.

    With increasing industrialisation, and a growing realisation of the potential Zhodani threat to spinward saw the Imperial government begin to take an interest in Jewell. A naval presence was established in the system, followed by the establishment of a Navy and Scout base from 480-485. A century later, ships from the Jewell Squadron were the backbone of Imperial forces that jockeyed for position with the Zhodani in the Chronor and Massina (subsec D/Foreven) subsectors. This jockeying soon erupted into open warfare as the First Frontier War exploded through the Marches.

    Jewell was captured by Zhodani forces in 592, and occupied until Olav hault-Plankwell retook the system amid fierce fighting in 603. The end of the war saw the Zhodani in possession of former Imperial worlds in the Foreven Sector, and Jewell became a major factor in the Imperium's plans to defend the Spinward Marches from further attack. Predictably enough, Jewell was attacked heavily during the Second Frontier War (615-620), and was under seige for almost eight months before Admiral Arbellatra Akhalikhoi relieved the world in 617. After the war, with most of the Chronor Subsector in Zhodani hands, Jewell became even more important to the Imperial Navy. Facilities were expanded, and the naval presence in the system scaled up.

    Industrialisation of Jewell continued, at a predictable cost to the planetary biosphere. Jewell's population mushroomed, due to the arrival of refugees from former imperial worlds, and fortune-seekers looking for employment. Jewell was attacked heavily in each of the subsequent Frontier Wars, and suffered grievously, although it remained in Imperial hands. The system was heavily beseiged by Zhodani forces during the Fifth Frontier War - from the war's outbreak in 1107 to the breakout of the 125th Fleet in 1110, Jewell was largely cut off from outside aid. The breakout of the 125th was accompanied by supporting attacks by Imperial naval assets from the Regina subsector, and effectively ended the seige (although the Zhodani remained a menace in the system for some time to come). By the assassination of Emperor Strephon in 1116, Jewell was one of the most heavily defended systems in the Marches, as well as being a heavily industrialised world and home to 6 billion souls. In 1202, Jewell is home to 11.2 billion.

    Jewell was one of the 26 worlds targetted by the Regency Industrial Development Program. The program was highly successful on Jewell, and has succeeded in raising the world's tech level to 15 (F). The massive investment in Jewell paid handsome dividends. This was fortunate, as Jewell is one of the primary target worlds for refugees fleeing the 'troubles' in the Zhodani Consulate. There are currently almost one hundred million Zhodani refugees on Jewell, held in over one thousand holding camps, primarily in the north polar regions of the planet. Despite the efforts of the Regency and the Jewell government, more refugees are arriving in greater numbers than can be processed and resettled. The refugees' presence is not well tolerated by the locals, which is the major reason why the holding
camps are located well away from settled areas.

    On entering the Jewell system, be prepared to be immediately challenged by Regency Navy or Regency Quarantine Service ships. Incoming starships will be directed to the RQS Station on Opal (Jewell's outermost satellite, F10026B-C), where the ship and it's occupants will undergo exhaustive examination. Ships that do not pass inspection will be impounded immediately, and it's owners/operators can look forward to a lengthy sojourn at the Regency Prison on Jenghe/Regina. Whatever the result, expect to be held on Opal for at least three days.

    Following quarantine procedures, permission will be granted to transfer to one of Jewell's three commercial starports: Jewell Highport, Jewell Downport or Magdala Commercial Starport (a privately owned facility). All other starport facilities in the system are operated by the Regency Navy and/or Quarantine Service, and are strictly off limits to unauthorised personnel. Still, one can't help but notice the presence of warships - Jewell is swarming with activity, from 10-ton boats shuttling to and from the BatRon of Plankwell Class Battleships home-ported at the Arbellatra Akhalikhoi Naval Base. Jewell is the headquarters of the Regency 212th Fleet.

    Descending to the surface, one of the more noticeable sights are the banks of dirty brown clouds covering a rocky gray surface. Sprawling cities and industrial complexes mark much of the planet's surface, and a large fraction of it's land area. Jewell, despite it's name, is a dirty and grimy world. The atmosphere is fouled by a host of pollutants, chiefly sulphur dioxide, hydrogen sulphide and nitrogen compounds. Breathing the atmosphere without a filter mask is not advisable - a few hours exposure is generally acceptable, but further exposure inevitably results in respiratory disorders and cancers. Filter masks are provided free of charge by the government, and are dispensed at all public places. On arrival at the planet's surface, visitors will be issued with a temporary permit for a nominal fee. 

    Jewell's cities tend to look alike - dirty and drab are the words most used by offworlders to describe them. Little attention is paid to building exteriors, beyond that necessary to keep the atmospheric taints outside. Combine this with the gray coveralls that seem to be a regulation item of clothing amongst the locals, and the filter masks that cover the face and eyes, and a visitor could well be tempted to make a hasty departure for more inviting locations. Perseverance is advised however, for like most surface appearances, those on Jewell are deceiving.

    Jewell's natives are friendly and accommodating towards off-worlders, with the notable exception of Zhodani and Vargr (both races are the target of centuries old fear and loathing). Unfortunately, the Zhodani Exodus has dumped millions of Zhodani literally on Jewell's doorstep. Their presence on the Jewell is the cause of great dissatisfaction, with many demanding that the refugees be sent at gunpoint back to the Consulate.

    Once indoors, with coveralls and facemasks off, Jewellers are an expansive and demonstrative lot and are famous drinkers, brawlers and poets. Building interiors are generally low-ceilinged, and richly decorated, designed to promote a sense of comfort and well being. Jewell also has one of the highest number of bars per capita of any world in the Regency.

    Jewell's government is a fairly unremarkable impersonal beauracracy, local Administrative Councils report to successively higher authorities, up to the Planetary Administrative Authority. The beauracracy recruits from all levels of society, and if promotion is not entirely merit based, it is not so corrupt as to invite popular revolt. Law levels are high, banning personal weapons outside of the home, and the local law enforcement authorities are backed by a large and complex legal apparatus. Trade regulations are not as harsh, their primary focus being to serve the requirements of the Regency Quarantine Service. Jewell's government maintains low tarrifs on most imported goods. Jewell sends 10 representatives to the Regency Senate, the senators are directly appointed by the Planetary Administrative Authority, and are typically used as reward positions for great achievement within the bureaucracy.

    The most important non-governmental body on Jewell is the 'Aran Kalje', a fiercely atheistic organization that promotes the virtues of physical and mental discipline. The Aran maintains camps, or 'laager' where adherents live for up to twenty months at a time under military-type conditions. Not surprisingly, a large number of Aran members end up in Jewell's armed forces. The laager are organized and run at a local level, as is the rest of the organization.

    Jewell's close relationship with the Imperial/Regency military is also worth noting. Large tracts of the planet are used by the Army, Navy and Quarantine Service, and are off limits to civilians. The planetary governor is also commander of the planetary armed forces, as well as the Jewell Colonial Squadrons (the reserve component of the Regency Fleet in Jewell). The governor carries the title of Count Jewell, and reports to the Duke of Regina. Traditionally, the planetary governor has been an Imperial or Regency Navy Admiral, one of the rare instances when domestic matters are overridden by Imperial or Regency authorities. The title is one of the relatively few that has survived Norris' democratic reforms, primarily because it is not a hereditary title.

    Jewell is a major producer of lanthanum and other rare earth elements (notably niobium and yttrium ores), as well as fissionable ores. Not surprisingly, the planet is also a substantial weapons producer, particularly small arms and armored vehicles. Jewell is also one of the principal producers of military starships for the Regency. Perhaps the most famous product of Jewell is whisky, which is famed throughout the Regency for it's quality. There are no less than 37 major distilling houses on Jewell, serving a large domestic and off-world market. Of these, the most well known is Amrihkur-Cameron, which has held Imperial patents for it's products since 405. A bottle of Amrikhur-Cameron malt whiskey bottled in 1107 recently sold for Cr44,000 on Regina.