Star System: Helios
Astronomical Designation: Helios c
Astronomical Name: Aphrodite
Class: Class E
Radius: 6273.9 km
Mass: 4.924×1024 kg
Satellites: Three, including Adonis
Atmosphere: Oxygen-nitrogen atmosphere
Population: 1.2 billion
Polity: Compact of Humanity in Assembly
Aphrodite was the third planet out from Helios and innermost Class-E world, the others being Tian, Ares, and Demeter. Because explorers thought it analogous to Sol‘s Venus, they named it Aphrodite after the Greek equivalent to Venus.
Aphrodite was a sultry world with a thick, oxygen-rich atmosphere. Climates range from rain forest to desert. Continents are divided primarily by alpine mountain ranges and oceans are three very large lakes as opposed to the world-spanning seas of most Class-E planets. It’s troposphere is deeper than on most Class-E worlds. As such, Aphrodite’s tallest peak, Mt. Buxhanshal, has a cool, dry climate quite comfortable to humans.
The nation of India, specifically the state of West Bengal, claimed the world around the same time a Chinese-led consortium commissioned a colony on Gaia, renamed Tian. Settlers left India in a sleeper ship as it would take decades to supply and equip the new colony via the Firenze, Aurora, and Helios Passes, the three naturally occurring wormholes leading from Sol to Helios. During the trip, Dasarius Interstellar perfected projection drive and invented the hypergate, which allowed rapid access to the Helios system. As such, Tian went online within five years. Workers unable to get land claims on the new world staked claims to Demeter, Ares, and Aphrodite. While a sleeper ship arrived at Ares, existing settlers planned for the arrival. Those on Aphrodite did not.
As a result, two ethnic groups arose. The Penqu, squatters and their descendants, and the Kolkats, sleeper colonists from West Bengal and other parts of India. This resulted in nearly 300 years of civil unrest. Around 200 IE, Dasarius began one of the first projects to pacify the planet by bringing jobs there. Efforts by Juno to sabotage the Compact and Dasarius resulted in the project’s failure. The most successful effort began in 418. The company allowed Frederick Ansel, founder of Cubism, to use his philosophy to give the planet a more pacifist creed. However, a project manager named Gerard Kurz, secretly working for Juno, hijacked the movement and spun off a violent, radical sect responsible for chaos throughout the Compact. Ultimately, Kurz was hunted down and killed by the Navy, resulting in a full military occupation of the planet.
The occupation led to a stable protectorate government. As of 436, the planet was on the road to becoming a core world. By then, it hosted a new Thulian Clinic to give the project a presence in the Compact.