Every society has its outcasts, its renegades. Sometimes they come in organized groups, as the Khitaians split away from Hyborea. Sometimes they come in dribs and drabs, individuals and small groups, that end up gravitating towards each other.
There are no habitable planets in the Barachan system, but there are a great deal of mineral resources. There have been several attempts over the centuries to explit these resources, but all have foundered on one fault or another. The distance from other, inhabited systems, leaves supplying a mining base difficult. Some corporations used the system as a "dumping ground" for intractable workers and troublemakers, a punishment duty for those who had offended management. It should come as no surprise that worker revolts were common.
Decades before the Draconian conquest, one last attempt was given up as a bad job. The company was going to pull its administrators and guards out and abandon everything else in place - including thousands of workers.
Somehow, one of the worker organizations got wind of the plan. Shift Foreman Daniel Barnes was the leader who brought the disparate small groups together with a plan. Hours before the final pull-out was due to leave, they stormed the docks. After a pitched battle they managed to seize the evacuation ship, and the security vessel (a surplus Navy destroyer, re-armed by a PMC) that had been sent as escort.
The Hyborean media - primed by the corporate PR flacks - condemned the revolting workers as pirates. Daniel Barnes tried to contact the coast guard and government of nearby systems to beg help for the stranded workers, only to learn that warrants had been issued for his arrest, as well as other prominent leaders among the workers. In the end, desperate for his people's survival, Barnes raided a shipfitter's repair yard and stole dozens of hydroponics fittings, air recycling systems, and other critical components.
With their life support aboard the mining stations temporarily secured, the Barachan workers declared their independance from the corporations and from Hyborea. They managed to trade some refined ore for other critical supplies, dealing quietly with Khitaian merchants.
A token attempt was made by the Hyborean navy to put down the revolt some weeks later. The pair of frigates and single destroyer dispatched discovered that the mining equipment left behind had been converted into surprisingly effective weaponry. Shocked, the small squadron withdrew, having suffered fairly minor casualties.
Over the years since, the Barachan settlements would survive as best they could. Sometimes by raiding, sometimes by trading, sometimes by sheer improvisation and willpower. By the time Draconia and Tharkad rolled over Hyborea they'd repelled two fairly serious assaults by the skin of their teeth. Cunningly-designed sensor-stealth equipment, taking advantage of the unique stellar environment, masked the location of the mining stations from even the best of sensors.
Several light warships, leading a small refugee convoy, made their way to the system fleeing the Draconian conquest shortly after the fall of the Hyborean homeworld. The senior naval officer - a Lieutenant Commander Laborn - brokered a deal with the Barachan leadership (now headed by Barnes' twin daughters, Taylor and Emma). The Barachan system would become a lynchpin of Hyborean resistance to the conquerors, raiders turning their trade to guerilla warfare against a new oppressor.
In the end, the system would serve as a forward operating base for the War of Liberation. A full amnesty was offered to all for their efforts in winning Hyborea's freedom.
Today, the Barachan system is recognized as an independant minor polity. They maintain a policy of an open port, welcoming traders and visitors from Hyborea, Draconia, Khitai, Tharkad, and any other who wishes to visit. Raiding still continues, but rarely particularly intensely. Political pressure and balances between the various realms keeps any of them from mounting a serious expedition to hunt down the raiders' base stations, which are - almost certainly - still somewhere in the system. Or perhaps somewhere else nearby, there are several other, equally uninhabited, systems within a couple of parsecs.
Complicating things further, the Barachan Raiders still hold a certain popular mystique among those who romanticize their early struggle against first corporate oppression, then Draconian conquistadors. It is generally considered unlikely that a permanent solution to the problem is likely in the near future.
The Barachan Raiders make use of whatever ships they can get their hands on. A number of older, pre-war Hyborean warships are still in service, and the Raiders have gotten their hands on a number of more modern Dumnonii frigates in the RHN's surplus sales. The remaining ships are mostly armed merchant vessels, although a few custom-built hulls have started to appear.
The Barachan (official) Navy is in rather similar shape. Hyborean Dumnonii frigates and a few Picti destroyers supplement the pre-war craft, along with a few Khitai-built light cruisers. They also maintain a number of captured Tharkad and Draconian hulls, taken during the Occupation and Liberation. The number of these has been dwindling with the rarity of parts to maintain them, but trade has been picking up of late and rumor has it they have obtained a source. The pride of the BSN is the Sekhmet's Claw, a Tharkad-built heavy cruiser (formerly TIV Ruthless).
Pictured here is one of the new hulls that have been witnessed in raiding operations. Her type has been assigned the reporting name Corsair by Confederacy Intelligence. About the size of a large light cruiser, the Corsair-type carries a fairly standard suite of grasers and point-defense turrets for its size. Two Hyborean fusion guns are slung under the nose, while the projections to either side - possibly intending to appear to be Hellrails - actually contain light plasma projectors. The Corsair's most dangerous weapon, however, is the six docking ports on the lower hull. These allow the Corsair to dock and carry a full squadron of gunboats, capable of only short FTL flight on their own but heavily armed.