A colony as far from human space as one can get.
- Lost Colony: Usually forgotten about by most people so much that it's practically become this.
- Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: Niraya is a small colony made up of simple farmers and religious aspirants and the colony as a whole isn't viewed pleasantly by society, so this is what the Nirayans essentially are forced to become in order to defend their world from an invading force that doesn't care about whether they live or die.
- Suicidal Pacifism: How the Nirayans intially come off.
- The Alcoholic: Averted. States that she cant have alcohol because of genetic predisposition to alcoholism, meaning shed become this if she were to ever drink it.
- Bait-and-Switch Comment: She tells Maggs she can't have alcohol. Maggs assumes it's a prohibition of her faith. She tells him that's it's actually because she has genetic predisposition towards alcoholism.
- Badass Pacifist
- Belief Makes You Stupid: Averted. In fact, the only reason she fell for Maggs' con is simply because of how desperate she was to save Niraya.
- Deadpan Snarker
- Stern Teacher: To Roan.
An insurrectionist military organization that opposed Earth and its Navy some years before the story begins.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: They started off as a simple La Résistance operation and gradually became an organization that could give The Navy a run for its money.
- Propaganda Machine: The Establishment really churned this thing for their side. Archie was led to believe by them that they hadn't suffered nearly as many losses as they had. They decided to break a universally accepted law by creating an A.I. based on their most famous fighter pilot in order and advertising him as a pilot who refused to die in order to boost morale.
- Written by the Winners: Despite the hard-fought battles between The Navy and The Establishment, the war would later be described as "The Establishment Crisis" by The Navy, something Valk is still a little sour about.
- Your Terrorists Are Our Freedom Fighters: The military definitely painted Establishmentarians as this. This is especially highlighted when Valk has to point out to Lanoe in Forgotten Worlds that Lanoe has always been on the side that has never lost a battle, so he doesn't know what it feels like to be on the other side.
The real Tannis Valk
- Ace Pilot: Received a Blue Star and can claim something only a literal handful in the galaxy can claim: he survived Aleister Lanoe. Though the Valk A.I. based on him would later claim it was pure luck: he had more fuel than Lanoe did.
- Dying Moment of Awesome: He managed to put in the targeting codes to take down 2 more Navy ships before he succumbed to his wounds. His ship ended up taking out those two ships and then returning to base.
- Dead All Along: Being as the Tannis Valk we meet in the story is just an A.I. copy of him, the real Tannis Valk did actually die from the fire in his cockpit.
- Defiant to the End: Before he died, he took down 2 more Navy ships.
- Historical Villain Upgrade: He was a hero to The Establishment, but everyone in the Navy views him as a terrorist.
- Nom de Guerre: The Blue Devil.
- The Rival: One of Lanoes many, but the only named one in the series.
- Worthy Opponent: Though it was said to the A.I. based on him, Lanoe shares a bit of camaraderie with the pilot based on the memory of trying to kill him and failing.
- Character Death: He commits suicide shortly after Lanoe and crew meet him.
- Hope Spot: For him, After being trapped in a Pocket Dimension as a part of a Hive Mind -esque group of aliens for 17 years, he is ecstatic to see humans for the first time in so long. He's even more excited when he sees a comrade of his is part of the group of visitors. For him, there's a chance he can leave and return to his home. Until he finds out from Valk that The Establishment lost and as a result, he had lost his home and probably many of his friends.
- In-Universe Nickname: Archie
- Killed Offscreen: Commits suicide from the weight of being shamed by the Choir for wanting to leave them and finding out The Establishment lied to him and lost the war.
- Mauve Shirt: Has a few scenes before he quietly kills himself.
- Stepford Smiler: Very much so. It's made very clear that he wants to leave, but since The Choir can read his thoughts and Lanoe and crew can't, he's forced to act otherwise.
- Posthumous Character: They were all executed, some of them without a trial.
- A.I. Is a Crapshoot: The in-universe Ur-Example.
- Cold Equation: The A.I. was told by Martian humans to end the Century War between Mars and Earth, so it took the most logical step to end the war: kill everyone on Earth.
- The Dreaded: Not so much the A.I. itself, but it made any A.I. this trope for humanity.
- Although, back in its heyday, it was The Dreaded Dreadnought.
- Invincible Villain: Lanoe sure seems to remember it that way. The thing took 15 years to bring down and cost the half the human race.
- Lightning Bruiser: It bisected the North American continent in 39 seconds.
- More Dakka: It wasted no time on unloadingLanoe: The machine had turned every gun it had on Earth and kept firing until it ran out of ammunition. Then it flew back to its base on Vesta. To reload.
- Once More, with Clarity!: In Forsaken Skies, Valk describes the Century War as a terrible war where half of humanity died. Were told at the end of the book that A.I. were illegal and labeled too dangerous to be allowed to exist. The two seem unrelated. Until Forgotten Worlds, where its revealed that the reason A.I. are illegal and that half of humanity was wiped out in the Century War is because an A.I. was responsible for it.
- Small Role, Big Impact: The A.I. itself never shows up in the story, but its existence and actions led to the creation of the Synthetic Instrumentality Protocols that forbid the creation and existence of artificial intelligence, which doesnt help Valks situation.
- Weapon of Mass Destruction: With its weapons, it reshaped the North American continent leaving craters to be filled in by water, which would later become the Midwestern Sea. It didnt stop there. Lanoe describes that when it was done, it turned southern Asia into one gigantic swamp. Then following up with a dreadful half the human race died.