Updated: Dec 31, 2020
When the Shifted Wormhole was discovered in the remote system of Varal; on the fringe of the mighty Angel Nebula, it sent shockwaves through the Aquarian systems. The then Federal Government took measures to prevent the discovery of the historic stellar phenomena from reaching the attention of the mass media, or anyone outside of the Federal Naval Intelligence Agency's most inner circles.
It would be known as Operation Homecoming to the UAS Navy, a covert military operation would be planned; drawn up for the 'invasion' of the Sol system. After the conclusion of the long coming war to end the Tigershark Cartels threat in the Angel Reach, it was discovered that the driving force behind the Cartels' aggression towards the Aquarian states was, in fact, motivated by financial and material incentives provided by a very old enemy from before the Fall of the UTN.
The Central Earth Government had indeed survived the Great Exodus, emerging from civil war to forge a new state on Earth and across the Sol System, but it didn't stop there. For centuries the CEG held a grudge against the descendants of the Western Alliance; the Unified Terran Nations and eventually the United Aquarian Systems. A grudge that went back to the Exodus itself, and enflamed by the short but vicious conflict in the Phoenix sector between the old enemies and their local proxies in 2601 A.D.
Suffering a strategic defeat, the CEG military was forced to retreat through the Shifted Wormhole, which at the time had manifested in the Delta Aquarius system, below the shadow of Aquarius. Returning to Sol, the CEG licked its wounds and began planning for a major and long-term war with the Aquarius Cluster's incumbent Terran state. Sometime after the turn of 4th Millennium, the Shifted Wormhole would transition to the Varal system, on the edge of the Angel Nebula, where the CEG would ultimately use the Tigersharks Clan as a puppet to probe the Terran state's borders, in preparation for the CEG's master plan: occupation of the heart of the sector and the eradication of its old enemy.
The UAS Military campaign in the Angel Reach was an unexpected event that would ultimately put the CEG on the defensive again, with the vast UAS Fleet amassing in the Reach, ready to descend on Varal and potentially; Sol beyond the Wormhole.
The CEG was well-known to UTN military intelligence, as a potential but still viable threat to the state since the first major conflict in Aquarius in 2601. This intelligence was inherited by the UAS after the Fall of the UTN, but remained classified within the top circles of the Military Intelligence complex. After it was confirmed by historic data that the CEG was involved in the conflict in the Angel Reach, presumably behind the Tigersharks' attacks, the UAS Naval Intelligence drew up immediate plans to deal with the situation. However, the discovery would not be made public, and the data would be kept from even high-ranking core-system naval commanders on a strictly, need to know basis.
Operation Homecoming would remain in secrecy for half a century, consisting of small but directed raids into the Sol system via the Shifted Wormhole by UAS Navy Deep Operations units. Officially, the Varal system was unoccupied, and declared unsafe by the Federal Navy. Remote sectors in the Angel Reach were unlikely to attract civilian traffic or explorers due to the distance; only capital-class Jump Drives could make the trip in reasonable time, but the Navy had essentially blacklisted the system's location - removing it from all but the most secure internal star maps.
The system's location within the fringe of the Angel Nebula was ideal for secrecy, the closest nearby system of Outlook was astronomically fairly close to the Varal star, but the dense Angel Nebularic fields shielded any kind of method of detection by civilian-grade equipment. Despite this natural barrier, the UAS Navy maintained a sizable presence in Outlook, essentially embargoing the system from any traffic at all, under the guise of Tigershark remnant activity.
Of course, Varal itself was host to an enormous military presence, including the establishment of a trio of static installations, including a shipyard and deep space outpost; in preparation for a major conflict beyond the Shifted Wormhole, while simultaneously acting as a vanguard to prevent further CEG incursions into Aquarian space.
Despite a huge amount of intelligence gathered by UAS Navy Deep Operations activity in Sol, no major conflict took place during the New Federal Era, instead, when ATIS inherited the Federal Navy and control of the sector in 4402 A.D, the operation was still in the planning stage.
That would change when Imperial Navy scouts detected unusual energy readings from the Shifted Wormhole; leading scientists to warn that the anomaly was close to collapse, or at least; transitioning to another, potentially unmapped system beyond the Angel Nebula. Imperial Navy Command ordered an immediate expedition into the historic system of Sol, in order to establish a Long-Range Subspace Gate of a scale never before deployed - using technology acquired from the Vujlcyon Conglomerate during their co-operation with ATIS's predecessor, the UAS, on the Trans-Crimson Super Highway.
The advanced Subspace Gate Project had yielded technology that could theoretically make inter-sector transit viable in reasonable time constraints, with projected scaling of the technology even making transition between galactic arms possible. ATIS had poured almost infinite resources into various Deep-Space Transition projects opened by the UTN and UAS in the centuries passed; consolidating them as one with the new prototypes from the joint Terran-Vujlcyon project, TCSH.
Operation Homecoming was to make its first official deployment in 4404 A.D, once again under a veil of secrecy.
(Continued in next post)