Above the world of Burne, a colossal Vahnten Continental Arkship mines stray asteroids pulled into the planets gravity. These asteroids are remnants of a nearby Vahnten world that was destroyed in a massive conflict decades ago. The ship is part factory, museum, and mausoleum. The Vahnten mine what is valuable yet also preserve anything that has archeological and historical value, including the remains of its inhabitants. It serves as a memorial to the dead. A powerful stasis beam emitting from the ship, creates a gravity well the rocks slowly orbit in. Workers land on the fragments, prepare and inspect them before they are brought inside the vessel. On the planet below, The Vahnten have a industrial colony located within the northern continent of Terradahm.
Vahnten Worker and Slave
The Vahnten Continental are a massive industrial state. Centuries ago they discovered a semi sentient species deep underground and trained them for heavy labor. These creatures are rumored to be far more intelligent than originally realized, and are an issue of controversy and intellectual discussion in Vahnten society. These discussions are very far from Burne.The creatures internal breathing and impenetrable structure is ideally suited for work here in the harsh environments of space, the deep seas, and artic conditions below. Massive feet and horns are sensitive to vibration and sound. Workers use tools which project sounds and subtle vibrations through stone, to give basic commands to the creatures.
In some of the larger rocks the Vahnten have created various substations and transport centers to collect materials. Some of the veteran workers at the sites can decide to live in small structures nearby, where they can have more privacy from other workers living on the Arkship. Often these men and woman are here for years, developing friendships and finding solace in spiritual practices. Markers are burial sites for fellow workers killed in accidents.
Stef Bree Oceanic Settler
Several groups of peoples live below on the surface of Burne. A large group from the faction called the Oceanic Sphere, once fought the Vahnten Continental. They were a crew of a colossal ship of war, called a Oceanic Sunship. Sick of conflict and seeking peace, the entire crew decided to mutiny. They signed an armistice with the Vahnten and abandoned their own fleet, traveling to Burne to settle. They docked their ship in a fertile canyon, and lived in mutual kinship with the native peoples. Slowly they expanded the settlement around the ship and have grown into a large community. That was nearly a generation ago. Steph Bree, was born on Burne, her father once an honored military officer. We will follow her story across the planet.
When the Vahnten Continental first arrived above the world, they had two arkships. One of ships failed and plunged to the planets surface. As it descended, its massive laser projector misfired and carved into the surface from the high atmosphere. The laser bore chaotic valleys all over the surface of the world. It caused massive damage before it was able to regain control and have a controlled crash in the oceans near the Northern continent of Terradahm. Eventually these valleys were settled by outcasts and the region was dubbed the Lashes. Various efforts were attempted to rape the area of resources in the rock but they all failed. Soon after the outcasts looked to poaching the Burne Grazer (see below) for profit, but still use the valleys as a makeshift headquarters for their poaching operations.
The Burne Grazer
The native peoples of the world worship the colossal creature known as the Grazer. Annually these massive creatures migrate from different parts of the world and have known migration routes they march along. As a rite of passage chosen members of the native clans run along the path with these creatures, a daring challenge to remain standing and not be crushed. Native legends tell of a time where the world was once lush and full of life. Before they were cursed to travel along the plains, the Grazers soared across the clouds with giant wings.
More Sketches and Ideation
Below are some more sketches and explorations of other locations and characters in the story.