As the war escalates, the various civilizations across the Spiral Arm crack from the strain. Focused intently on the outside alien foe, leaders across the galaxy are failing to hold their nations together. Amid the mounting tensions, empires begin to crumble. In despair at his powerlessness to keep his human race alive, Chairman Basil Wenceslas grows increasingly irrational and tyrannical. Unable to effectively defend against the alien enemy, he blames the unruly colonies and independent human nations around the galaxy and punishes them with violence. Meanwhile, the leader of the Ildirans, Jora'h, flounders under a massive rebellion. For the first time in memory, Ildiran has taken up arms against Ildiran, and feeling every death through their psychic network, Jora'h suffers at the slaughter of his people. Every planet and colony across the spiral arm, human or alien, feels the devastation. No one is safe.