Proxima Centauri was the largest and most important Arachnid system involved in the First Bug War, and it took several decades in the early 21st century for the infant Tech Infantry to clear the Arachnid infestation from the system. Initially, the system was blockaded and the planets bombarded by Earth Fleet to hamper Bug movement and supply, but eventually the ground troops had to go in and dig the Bugs out of their holes one by one. Barely a habitable planet by human standards to begin with, Proxima III was left a blasted husk of a planet by the fighting and took many years to be terraformed into some semblance of hospitality. Settlement began in 2026, well before the last bug hives were eradicated from beneath the planet's surface, and terraforming is still not complete 250 years later.
Proxima managed to escape heavy fighting after that, however, except for occasional raids by the Christian Federation during the Third Civil War. It remained in Grand Council Loyalist hands throughout that conflict, was not in the path of either the Vin Shriak, Vulthra, or Caal Invasions, and declared loyalty for the Holy Terran Empire early in the Ascension War and stayed that way from then on. Although this peace and quiet was mostly due to there not being much in the system worth fighting over, it did allow the system's population to be periodically swollen by refugees from systems not quite so lucky to be a peaceful backwater.
Not actually anywhere near the star once known as Alpha Centauri C, also known as Proxima due to being the closest star to the Earth System, the system currently known as Proxima Centauri was code-named that when it was still a Bug staging base during the Bug War. The code name stuck, thanks to the original star of that name having no planets worth settling, the complex gravity of a triary star system having long since ejected into the void any planets it might have once had, or spiraling them down to their doom, absorbed by one of the three stars. The new Proxima Centauri is a system of five planets and one star. Only the third planet, Proxima III, is habitable by humans outside of a pressurized dome, and it is home to the vast bulk of the system's inhabitants. Proxima III itself is mostly a frozen iceball of a planet, with temperatures at the equator averaging barely above freezing.
Proxima III's 150 million people mostly live in a series of small industrial cities and mining settlements ringing the equator, taking advantage of the planet's extensive network of Arachnid tunnels to mine its mineral resources. Food is grown hydroponically in large glassed-over domes and greenhouses that stretch for miles. One mining settlement of note is the so-called Dark Zone, a deep valley sheltered from the winds by a thrust fault between two mountain ranges, warmed by geothermal heat from the volcanoes either side of it. Originally settled as a Turbinium mine, when the ore petered out it remained as a center of geothermal power production, hydroponic farming using warm water from volcanic springs, and various criminal enterprises. Despite great efforts from Crusader Teams, the near-constant shadow on the valley floor also makes it a popular haunt for vampires.
In addition to mining and hydroponic farming, the system was also once a center of shipping, thanks to its proximity to several more populous and important star systems, and its relative safety deep within human space. It was the headquarters of the Proxima/Durendal Export Company, the cargo-shipping arm of the Olin Industries megacorp, itself one of the Harrington Industries daughter corporations. But the demise of the jumpgate network after the Ascension War greatly curtailed intersystem shipping, with what little trade remained becoming an Imperial Monopoly, and the Proxima System has been in a prolonged economic recession as a result for the past decade.
At some point in the next thousand years, Proxima will become ruled by a religious oligarchy, most likely the Cult of the Emperor.
Behind the ScenesEdit
The system is named both for the real-life Proxima Centauri star, and for the many sci-fi space colonies set there, most notably the Proxima III colony that played a key role in the Babylon 5 universe.