Hera is the first planet in orbit of the protostar Murphy in the Georgia system. It is orbited by two moons: Bullet (more of an asteroid than a moon) and Eris. It is also orbited by a desolate planetoid housing the Perdition Penal Facility. The planet is also orbited by three man-made satellites ( Wendell’s Ferry, Hanuman Docks, and Romer’s Bazaar).
Hera is a largely agricultural world and, as such, was considered to be the breadbasket of the entire system. Most of the food in the ’Verse was grown, processed, and packaged on Hera. This was before the heavy bombing the planet sustained during the Unification War. Reconstruction efforts are ongoing, but slow—the planet has still not reached the economic high-point of its status before the conflict.
Hera and Persephone were known as the Gateway to the Border. During the Unification War, Hera was held firmly by the Independent faction. While Aphrodite supported a significant Alliance presence, Hera was a jumping-off point to the rest of the Border and to the Rim. While some continue to argue the strategic importance of Hera from the standpoint of military value and commerce, it remained the center of Independent consciousness after the loss of Shadow.
Further, in 2511 the protostar systems that contain Hera and Persephone (Murphy and Lux, respectively) came into their closest proximity. With Persephone being a firmly held Alliance planet and Hera’s place as the home of the Independent movement, this proximity gave a new strategic importance to Hera toward the end of the war—an importance that led to the infamous Battle of Serenity Valley.
The Battle of Serenity Valley concluded the bloodiest engagement of the Unification War and has been compared to the ancient battles of Gettysburg and Vicksburg by historians. At the culmination of that battle, the Independents suffered their most crushing defeat and lost their most strategic assets. While there were a few small skirmishes on other worlds, the Unification War effectively ended in Serenity Valley.
The capital city of Hera is Argos, located centrally on the planet.
Points of Interest
The site of the most infamous battle of the Unification War, this valley is still devastated. Nothing remains but blackened, scorched earth and debris. All that remains is the graveyard, located on the hills next to the valley.
The valley was also home to the now-destroyed Firefly Ship Works.
Serenity View and the Graveyard
The graveyard is located on the opposite side of the valley from the town of Serenity View. Families and friends of the fallen come to Hera to visit the graves, which bloom with flowers, captures, and mementos.
Over half a million men and women— Alliance and Independent alike—are buried here, each with his or her own small, identical headstone. Some have names. Most don’t. Plenty of families never saw their children come home from the War and have thus picked an unmarked grave to claim as their own, honoring it and hoping someone else does the same for their son or daughter.
Serenity graveyard is one of the most hallowed and sacred pieces of ground in all the ’Verse.