World Building: The Great Dark
Space. The Void. The Black. The Great Dark has had many names
over the course of history, and will probably have many more. People have looked up to the Great Dark since the beginning of time, staring with wonder and intrigue into the stars in search of answers.
We know little of the Great Dark, and studies of its depths have remained cursory, the domain of mathematicians and scholars rather than explorers. Nonetheless it is obvious that the Great Dark is incomparably vast. Distances within it must be measured in millions of miles at the least, and the stars we see must be unimaginably distant from the Sphere. Comets and shooting stars whirl across the emptiness, and sometimes crash into the Sphere with shattering force, drawn by the threshold force. Still harder to see, but present, are the smaller lights of what we can only imagine to be other worlds, often blotted out by the light of the stars they orbit.
Whether anything lives in the Great Dark is an unsolved mystery. Some claim to have seen moving forms in the blackness, titanic collosi visible in the night skies, embarking on mysterious journeys, but some scholars find many of these claims dubious at best. Some of our world’s histories and myths also claim to have encountered beings from beyond. Nonetheless, fewer have been sighted in our age.
This is from the same scholar and period as the entry on the Planetary Overview. Again, earlier- or for that matter later civilizations may have their own conceptions of the Great Dark, closer or further from the truth.
The Great Dark is essentially identical to the real world's Space in most respects but for two: the strong presence of magic and the presence of living beings that can survive in the void.
The most dominant of these in the galaxy of the Sphere are the Vortumbrae, who lord over most of the Great Dark. Travel in the Great Dark through conventional means is practically impossible without crossing at least one of the Vortumbrae, who generally react violently to the hubris of others in daring to traverse their realm. Only the Vortumbrae are known to be able to travel faster than light without resorting to the use of the Luminary Path, again rendering their dominance of the Great Dark all but absolute.