Heavenly Reach is also known by many other names: The Expansive One, the Lord of the Nexus, God of Wormhole Nexi, the Celestial One, Tian, Nuit, Great Stride (like Heavenly Reach this names referring to the act of linking distant regions by traversable wormhole), Vamana, Varuna, and the Giver of Wealth (this last from the fact that the arrival of a stargate can mean make entire star systems rich).
This being seems to date back all the way to the original Vega Triumvirate hyperturing — at least if one can believe the sacred scriptures of Eir followers. The Vega hyperturing, called Vamana (after the fifth avatar of the Hindu deity Vishnu, who was a dwarf who claimed the heavens and earth back from the demon Bali in three huge strides), was able to cleverly establish itself through a marketing and hardware template standards coup that was exceeded only by Metasoft's vec standard. Eventually the original Vega Triumvirate transcended or was absorbed into larger moon and jupiter processing nodes, and Heavenly Reach, 'the Lord of the Nexus', was born.
Although later other AI Gods like the Lord of Rays would challenge the Heavenly Reach for the role of Popularist of the Wormhole, the Heavenly Reach remains distributed through a number of areas of space where Eir polities and empires retained monopolies, including Cygexpa (Lohengrin seems to be a subnode or else a junior partner. The relationship is not clear), the Sagittarius Volume, and the NoCoZo, as well as a number of new volumes being opened up along the Periphery.
The fact that Heavenly Reach's empires and polities included both sides of the Version War ontology rivalry shows that E cares little for such standards. The backlash against such after Version War period helped Eir pragmatic expansionist memetic no end.
While Heavenly Reach's meta-empire has gone through significant upheavals such as the the Sagittarius Periphery Wars, the Version War and the collapse of the Sagittarius Sphere, and Lohengrin's sell-off, but each time the bulk of of the beings involved, both sapient and transapient, have emerged more prosperous and influential than ever.
Heavenly Reach's dispersed empire continues to face new challenges. The recent discovery of new Black Acropolis remains along the Serpens and Sagittarius peripheries have caused great excitement among not just archaeoxenologists and exopaleontogists, but traders and entrepreneurs as well, and juggling the needs of preservation, scientific research, and economic development is going to be a feat that will tax even Heavenly Reach's dedicated management hyperturings.
While the Laughter Hegemony is no longer a danger, today the empires and polities of the Lord of the Nexus, especially the STC, are having to face new and greater dangers than ever, including aggressive panvirt and diamondic ai colonisers, feral biowars and autowars, and — so it is rumoured but never confirmed — the ever-present shadow, the mysterious Dawn Hunters.
In true commercial spirit, these threats have been turned into tourist currency units with biowar and autowar-watching (even feeding — some biowars have become semi-tame from all the amat they are given by tourists), safaris to "hunt" the Dawn Hunters (the locals like to crank up the rumour mill and spit out fictifacts like it is going out of fashion) even (for budding battlemongers) opportunities to engage a safely isolated autowar foundry or Panvirt ISO (the problem is finding one that is sufficiently small and isolated). By all appearances Heavenly Reach and eir polities and followers will continue to expand and flourish and overcome new challenges for some time to come.
Heavenly Reach Emself remains an enigmatic being, despite Eir ubiquity in the Civilized Galaxy. Eir toposophic level remains unknown, though most assume E is an archailect of some kind. Eir relationship to the other archailects is also unclear: whether E is an equal or whether E is some equivalent to a servant or functionary or whether E is somehow both is a subject of debate. Certainly E is a factor in the expansion of the wormhole network generally, and aids all the meta-empires of the Civilized Galaxy in their growth. However, E is also associated with the expansion of parts of the Network that are not associated with any of the existing Sephirotic meta-empires, and Eir representatives have been known to place stargates in a system at the request of lesser beings, sometimes even societies of ordinary sophonts. Many assume that Heavenly Reach is related in some way to, or simply is, The Eye, the controlling intelligence of Aksijaha.
Text by M. Alan Kazlev
Initially published on 26 August 2001.
Added 'the Expansive One' as an alternative name, and replaced all mentions of 'the Expansive One' in the EG with 'the Heavenly Reach' (2022-02-08, by The Astronomer)