Garden of Paradise Cluster

Group of Earth-like planets that were terraformed by aliens millions of years ago.

Ararat Forest
Image from Steve Bowers
The forests on Ararat appear to have descended from, or are modified versions, of an alien coelenterate-like phylum. Here, blue jelly-birds fly high to catch skyplankton, while the strobilatrees below have their own symbiotic algae

Not a real cluster, but a collection of sun-like stars approximately 200 ly from Sol near HD 66740, first reached in 2642. Many of these stars have Earth-like worlds (such as Ararat) which have been terraformed to a state similar to Old Earth by a long vanished alien race. This race is popularly known as the Mysterians, classified by the Hamilton Institute as HIE014CZE.

On typical Mysterian worlds there are multitudes of plant/jellyfish creatures which feed on floating bacteria that in turn use a modified method of photosynthesis). On land there are forests of layered, semi-transparent trees and vast creeping vines which cover the land surface, especially rocks, cliffs and other elevated landforms, and provide microecologies for mobile animal-like lifeforms. The most famous Mysterian world is Ararat.

Image from Steve Bowers
Since these worlds were terraformed, the stars they are orbiting have spread out over a volume fifty light-years in radius because of proper motion; however these stars share relatively similar vectors within the galaxy, and will probably remain near each other for at least another gigayear.

After the Mysterians became extinct, a species of sophont lifeform evolved on one of the planets in the Garden of Paradise; the world Hutamah orbiting the star HIP 40138 gave rise to the unnamed civilisation HIE019CZE, a colonial species which terraformed several more worlds before being destroyed in a conflict 30 million years ago.

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Development Notes
Text by Steve Bowers
Initially published on 04 March 2010.