Ellen Fodon

Empress of the Terran Empire 286 - 302

b. 1 October 253
d. 16 November 302

Ellen Fodon was the oldest child of Emperor Philip Lütken and Mary Fodon. Although her early years were spent at the Palace on Earth, she was mainly raised at the Fodon estates on Torbet. One of the chief influences on the young girl was Sister Anona Ophelia of the Sisters of Mercy. Sister Anona instilled in Ellen a respect for the goddess Meletia, and a streak of mysticism that stayed with the girl to the end of her life.

Ellen Fodon, like her mother, was willowy and unworldly. Her eyes seemed to hold a hypnotic fascination. She was soft-spoken and rarely demonstrated emotion.

At age 14 Ellen took, and passed, her adulthood tests and entered the service of the Goddess, studying at the Mother House in Paris. At 16, in a liaison arranged by the Sisterhood but apparently supported by her parents, Ellen married Henry Schreiber, a minister in the service of Kaal. She bore a daughter, Joan, in 269.

In 275, when Philip Lütken became Emperor, the 22-year-old Ellen moved into the Palace with her father, mother, and brother Dirk. There, out of the public eye, she served as an advocate for the Sisterhood and the Kaal/Brandix/Meletia cult in general. It is widely believed that she was one of the major influences behind Philip's directive making the KBM cult the official religion of the Empire.

Philip named Ellen his successor during his 50th Birthday celebration in 284. Less than two years later, he died, and Ellen assumed the Throne with the full support of the Imperial Council. At the time, she was 33 years old, yet looked and acted much older.

As Empress, Ellen was not enormously popular, nor did she accomplish much of importance. Economic recovery continued in just about all Provinces; the major exceptions were Patala and parts of the Transgeled. Easily the most spiritual of the Emperors, Ellen saw the church as a way to counter the growing power of the Nobles and the Navy. She spent her time immersed in religious politics; under her sponsorship, the KBM cult added millions of churches and greatly extended its reach.

At the same time, the Empire's expansion increased as the number of member worlds passed 7,000 and the Division of Colonial Regulation (ColReg) gained enormously in prestige and power.

All of this expansion, religious and secular, took its toll on an Imperial Treasury that was already severely depleted from the depression of 275-280. Ellen's appointment of her brother Dirk in 289 as Imeprial Exchequer did little to stem the tide.

In 295, at the urging of her advisors, Ellen named her daughter, Joan, as her successor. Ellen's health began to decline, and in 302 she died in her sleep.

Immediately, Joan Fodon refused the Throne, once again throwing a disputed succession into the Imperial Council. There were two major candidates: Joan's son Alex Leonov (b. 275, age 27), and Dirk Fodon (b. 260, age 42). Deliberations did not take long, and only a tenday after Ellen's death, Dirk Fodon succeeded her as Emperor.

The Fodon Emperors
The Terran Emperors

copyright © 2003, Don Sakers
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