A world of the Turian Hierarchy. Home to dextro-amino-acid-based life, Invictus has temperate zones that were settled by a turian population that initially fell prey to a bewildering number of diseases.
Invictus’s atmosphere is primarily nitrogen and oxygen; its surface crust varies but has high concentrations of alumina and silver.
Hyraxgena: A variety of perennial desert shrub which normally retreats in dry seasons, but a little water (much less than a more traditional alternative imported from Palaven would require) can trick them into staying in bloom all year round. Hardy, pretty and low-maintenance.
Two decades after the first colony was founded the population had been reduced by half, due both to fatalities and a large colonist exodus. However, when the Primarchs considered ceding the planet to robo-mining interests, the turian statesman Shastina Emperus ambitiously declared that she’d start her own colony and double its population within five years. This effort succeeded, largely due to her colony’s location in a desert with a minimal number of pest species. The image of Shastina’s triumph in the frontier made for good political theatre, and the turian population poured in. The planet’s tropical belt still remains largely unexplored as its aggressive organic life still wreaks havoc on turian biology. A “house in an Invictus jungle” is a modern turian phrase for an idea that seems a good one, but only to those who came up with it.
Common Invictan tattoo designs involve three diagonal stripes. These stripes are a common element of facial camouflage, meant to break up the natural outline of one's features. It saves the wearer the trouble of having to slap on paint whenever they go down to the jungle to shoot things, which the early settlers on Invictus did pretty frequently. The look apparently caught on when they returned to civilization, because nowadays every district and municipality on Invictus has its own variation on the theme.
Because it can easily support life, criminals from throughout the Terminus Systems hide out on Invictus. Its official population is estimated to be half the number of sapients that are actually on the planet.
During the war, Invictan mutineers voiced dissatisfaction with current orders, demanding their immediate release from service in the Apien Crest, and that the Hierarchy provide necessary shipping for the return of the entire expeditionary force to Invictus. This request was echoed by their government back in Shastinasio:
“It’s of vital importance to us to get our legions back as soon as possible, in view of the present emergency. Had the information been at our disposal then, the needs of home defence would have necessarily precluded troops from Invictus ever proceeding beyond the Caestus relay. I now think that if our army were asked to be retained abroad indefinitely while its own planet remains under siege morale would be seriously affected. In answering the call put out by Primarch Fedorian, Invictus has been left completely impoverished in its own defences. Based on the understanding that the Invictan government had every reason to expect their return should the circumstances have made it necessary, no objections were raised to the transfer of our legions to Trebia to help stem the Reaper advance. The Invictan people, having volunteered for service offworld in large numbers, have acted and carried out our part of the bargain to the government of Palaven courageously and in good faith. Now, in our own hour of requirement and after all the assurances we have been given, the postponement of their return and the diversion of the proposed flow of reinforcements would be regarded here and elsewhere as an inexcusable betrayal”.
Apart from the necessity on strategic grounds for retaining the Invictan legions in the Trebia system, their transportation to Invictus, coupled with the transportation of equivalent forces from elsewhere to replace them, would involve an unjustifiable and dangerous shipping commitment, one that was quite beyond the Hierarchy’s current capacity to supply.
The actions of the mutineers were given official sanction by the colonial government on Invictus, amidst a breakdown in diplomatic relations between Shastinasio and Cipritine over the issue of reinforcing the outlying colony. Invictus again demanded that its expeditionary force in the Apien Crest be released immediately for operations against the Reapers in its own home system of Caestus, which Palaven refused to accede to. The dispute was aggravated by rumours of a possible despatch of Hierarchy troops to Talis Fia, a move roundly condemned by the Primarch of Invictus:
“It’s nothing short of treachery that a volus world should take precedence over a turian one - whose soldiers, as we speak, are dying in defence of the galaxy - in the minds of any responsible government. It’s nothing short of treachery that Adrien Victus has decided that the lives of three hundred million Hierarchy citizens on Invictus are worth less than his commitment to the interests of a client race. It’s nothing short of treachery that while turian reinforcements are being rushed to preserve Rupe Elkoss’s profits, Invictus’s army is being held hostage on Palaven while the Reapers destroy its homes and families. The conduct of the Palaven government throughout this crisis has been nothing short of reprehensible. We shouldn’t have to bargain for the return of our own legions”.
In response, the office of Primarch Victus - now operating from an unknown location - refuted allegations that volus defence requirements took priority over turian ones, and argued that the military situation on Invictus was being greatly exaggerated by the colonial government - the scale of the Reaper presence in the Caestus system being smaller than first reported, and that territorial and local defence forces were adequate to handle the threat facing the colony. “The front is Palaven”, it said in an official statement, “and any removal or diversion of forces from the main theatre will be greatly detrimental to the overall war effort.”
Frustrated by the lack of progress, the colonial government on Invictus decided to force the situation. A message was transmitted from the National Defence Headquarters to its units in the field:
The CGS informs all Invictan forces...that they're to refrain, either independently or in participation with friendly forces, from actively seeking out hostile contact with the enemy; or, if given orders from non-Invictan authority to the effect thereof, to decline said orders. If directly threatened by either enemy action or by non-Invictan authority attempting to enforce compliance with illegal orders, commanders are to undertake the minimum of measures necessary to preserve their commands as coherent fighting units or their authority over them…In our plans and dispositions we are relying upon the return of our legions in good shape and strength. The CGS reminds all personnel that their ultimate duty lies with their home colony; non-compliance will result in disciplinary action being taken against the offender upon return to Invictus.
It was unclear whether the colonial government possessed the constitutional authority to override the immediate command under which its legions had been subordinated; at this point, however, it appeared that most of the commanders in the expeditionary force, either of their own volition or under coercion by their men, were perfectly willing to comply with the “hold in place” orders.
Invictus avoided much of the personal horrors of the Reaper War, though it could not avoid the consequences. Most of the legions who mutinied would be imprisoned or executed after the war, and the Hierarchy took a special interest in Invictus afterwards. Much of its cities resemble an occupied territory now.
Septimus Oraka Institute for Higher Learning
Founded in 2161, the Septimus Oraka Higher Educational Institute, a post-secondary university, is accredited by both the Turian Hierarchy’s Minos Wasteland Bureau of Education and the Citadel Council Commission on Learning. The Institute is known for its cosmopolitanism and was one of the first institutions to accept human students upon their entrance into Council space.
Students experience a traditional turian education, with heavy emphases placed on martial sciences, engineering, history, and physical fitness. The school is held in especially high regard for its Philosophy and History departments, which have both consistently placed in the top five among all turian post-secondary institutions. Outside of Earth itself, the Institute is home to one of the largest collections of Zen Buddhist works.
To quote Daia Caran (pre-Reaper War):
"As you walk to the local corner store, you're likely to get violently stabbed by some convict hiding behind the five-billionth identical Shastina Emperus statue or poster or card-board cutout, as one in two Invictans aren't actually citizens there, but people from the Terminus Systems taking advantage of the fact that the colony happens to be located in the stupidest possible place in the galaxy, which says a lot about the people living there (to take a phrase originating from the planet, "a house in an Invictan jungle" describes the attitude of EVERYONE ON INVICTUS).
And one must not forget the colony's sterling tourism bureau. Come to Invictus, land of Shastina Emperus: GREATEST PRIMARCH IN THE KNOWN GALAXY AND LALALA I CAN'T HEAR YOU SAY OTHERWISE. Crime rates have been down twenty percent in the last five years from eighty percent to sixty! Enjoy our blisteringly hot desert days and ridiculously cold nights, but if you love the great outdoors, disappear in our vast equatorial jungles! Literally!"
In The Jungle: Some old stories from Corvax.