The War of a Thousand Suns (a Mute term), also referred to as The Holocaust (by the Trackers) and World War III, was a conflict that erupted on 17 November AD 2015 and may have lasted for only a few hours, but in that time utterly destroyed human civilisation.
In the 20th Century, the United States of America and a rival superpower, the Union of Socialist Soviet Republics, based in Russia, engaged in a 'cold war' for global dominance, which saw both sides accumulate many thousands of nuclear missiles and warheads. With the collapse of the USSR in 1990, the USA emerged as the pre-eminent world power and the stocks of nuclear weapons was accordingly reduced. However, some of these weapons found their way into the hands of terrorists, and when smaller states began building their own nuclear arsenals, it was feared that a global nuclear cataclysm had merely been averted, not eradicated altogether.
A major proponent of this theory was a man now known to history as George Washington Jefferson 1st. Born in Texas in 1969, he was an industralist who had become a multi-billionaire by the time he was 30. Believing that a nuclear cataclysm was inevitable, he attempted to separate the southern states from the rest of America through the Confederate Revivalist Movement in an effort to head off catastrophe, but this failed. He reconstituted the group as the Freedom Foundation, whose more altruistic-appearing goal was to create an immense computer database that would serve as a repository for all of human knowledge. This complex and its governing AI, COLUMBUS, was built underneath the Pre-H city of Houston, Texas, in the years leading up to the war.
It is unclear who fired the first shot in the war, but it is known that the war consisted of a full nuclear exchange between the United States and its allies (united in an alliance called the 'New Crusade') and several other states, including Russia. The USA used both ICBMs housed in hardened launch silos and also missiles based on the top-secret MX trains circling on the Amtrak rail network at the time of the conflict. The USA and its enemies perished in the nuclear exchange, a process exacerbated by the detonation of orbiting 'doomsday' weapons which spread even greater amounts of lethal radiation (most notably caesium and strontium) through the atmosphere.
During the war and its aftermath approximately 95% of the human race perished.
After the war, the Great Ice Dark engulfed the world for several decades. This period of nuclear winter saw global temperatures fall precipitously, and many of the people who had survived the initial nuclear exchange died from starvation, exposure and radiation sickness. Those who survived, the hardiest and fittest, became the ancestors of the Mutes.
George Washington Jefferson 1st and the Four Hundred survived in the fortified bunker of COLUMBUS Centre. Upon his death in 2044, Jefferson committed his descendants to reclaiming the blue sky world, and renamed the network of underground bases and outposts as the Amtrak Federation.
In-setting accounts of the warEdit
Amtrak Federation accountEdit
According to the official history of the Amtrak Federation, the formerly great nation of the United States had been swamped by illegal immigrants and sub-human beings known as 'Mutes' in the decades leading up to the war. Spineless administrations allowed the problems caused by these 'racially impure' beings to multiply as drug-use, lawlessness and murders became commonplace on the streets of major American cities. Attempts by right-minded citizens to resolve the problem were condemned by 'liberal' groups and pilloried by the corrupt mass media. Eventually, the Mutes gained control of powerful weapons which they used to destroy the USA and poison the atmosphere with radiation (a process which continues today thanks to just their very existence), but thanks to the foresight of George Washington Jefferson 1st and the Four Hundred, a core of civilised humanity survived in underground bunkers to become the Amtrak Federation, which is now dedicated to exterminating the Mutes and restoring the glory of Pre-H civilisation.
The Federation accounts of the war are highly suspect, since other evidence strongly suggests that the Mutes did not come into existence until after the war.
According to Mute oral tradition, the Holocaust was unleashed by the dark servants of Pent-Agon, the Lord of Chaos, and consisted of great silver birds of death unleashing destruction and murder on a vast, almost unfathomable scale. The orchestrators of the war survived, buried under the deserts of the south. According to the Mutes, the Amtrak Federation must be destroyed in reprisal for this act and to ensure it never happens again, and according to prophecy a saviour-figure known as Talisman will one day come to lead them in this endeavour.
Mute accounts of the war are intriguing as they suggest that the Amtrak Federation's founders may have directly been involved in the war, something not hinted at by other sources.
Iron Master accountEdit
According to Iron Master written accounts, the great sun god Amaterasu-Omikami had become disgusted with the way that the world in general and Nippon in particular had fallen under the prey of the Dark Light (electricity), an evil and corrupting force which induced decadence and a reliance on entertainment and self-gratification over the codes of honour. In his divine fury, he cast the sun into the sea, unleashing a firestorm of immense proportions that destroyed Nippon and even burned the sacred slopes of Mount Fuji.
The survivors of this event fled on an immense armada of refugee ships out to sea, carried by currents into the polar regions and then into the Atlantic Ocean. Eventually they landed on the eastern seaboard of North America, and there founded Ne-Issan in memory of lost Nippon. The Iron Masters have outlawed all attempts to harness the Dark Light, believing that doing so will unleash the Holocaust once more.