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The Festum are a silicon-based lifeform in Fafner in the Azure that seeks to give all intelligent life the benefit of assimilation.
Whether the Festum originated in this galaxy much less the universe is unknown. Millions of years ago, a Festum hive mind core (Mir) landed in Japan. It was the Mir which caused apes to evolve into humans and it fused with human chromosomes and therefore is still present in human DNA.
The Mir is discovered in Japan in 2085 AD and scientists begin to study the Mir. In 2114 AD, there is a 2nd Mir which arrives from space and lands in the Arctic. The satellites in orbit are all destroyed and public transportation devastated. Photonic crystalline beings appear throughout the world, attacking humanity and Earth orbit is filled with them. Global war begins and by 2015 NATO has been wiped out.
It's discovered in 2116 that the Japanese have been going sterile due to a gas released by the Mir and in 2118 out of fear the humans destroy Japan (except Okinawa and part of Hokkaido) via the use of nukes. By 2120, all remaining human military forces united under one banner, the Human Army. In 2129 the island of Hokkaido is annihilated by the Festum. By that time it is a three way conflict between the Festum, the human army (Neo-UN), and the ALVIS people of the island of Tatsumiyajima (the protagonists of the story, Japanese remnant).
Eventually the ALVIS people are able to communicate with the least hostile MIR and cease hostilities between the two, the Neo-UN forces having been virtually annihilated by that time. The genocidal MIR was placed into hibernation. In the meantime they prepared to meet the Space Festum to hopefully come to an understanding and prevent any future conflict.
The purpose of the Festum is to assimilate all intelligent life in the universe, seeing it as a benefit to those whom are assimilated. The core of the hive mind is the Mir which looks like a crystalline mass. Every single Festum is an extension of the Mir. If a Mir is shattered, the fragments themselves become their own Mir complete with a hive mind. During the newborn stage, these fragments can come under the influence of non-Festum sources. These "newborn" fragments display greater variety than a natural-born Festum. The basic type of Festum is approximately 120 m tall.
Festum are telepathic up to dozens of kilometers. They have the ability to create wormhole-like balls that destroy matter and they are also able to use them for teleportation. Higher-level Festum have energy shields which destroy projectiles and physical constructs.