An Inheritance of Stars
The Tau are a young, humanoid and technologically-advanced intelligent race native to the Eastern Fringes of the Milky Way Galaxy who are fighting to expand their interstellar empire and a philosophical concept they call the Greater Good. The Tau claim to be a peaceful race when possible, asking if others will join their cause voluntarily instead of fighting. However, if their peaceful overtures are refused, the Tau may well decide to conquer a planet and add it to their growing interstellar empire for the greater good, searing the flesh from the bones of anyone who stands against their benign expansions. Tau society is divided into a number of castes, each responsible for managing a specific aspect of their society. The Tau’s central motivating ideal is that everyone in their empire regardless of their species will work for the collective betterment of everyone else, an almost mystical philosophy they call the Greater Good.
The Tau are the central figures of the Tau Empire, an interstellar polity which is composed of several different intelligent species, primarily the Kroot of Pech, the Vespid of the world of Vespid and the nomadic Nicassar, though there are now several human Tau Septs derived from conquered Imperial humans or humans who voluntarily joined the Tau Empire because they were impressed by the concept of the Greater Good. These people are known as Gue’vesa in the Tau Lexicon and they are considered amongst the most vile of Traitors and Heretics within the Imperium of Man. The Tau are a relatively young race (it has been only 6,000 Terran years since Imperial Inquisitors first noted that the Tau had only just mastered fire and the wheel), and they have evolved rapidly over the past few millennia. Unlike other young intelligent races of the galaxy, the Tau have made remarkable leaps in technology and now represent a real threat to Imperial domination in their region of the galaxy.
When they encountered humans within the Argylian Expanse the Tau chose a path of sector wide good relations, and engaged in treaties and trade with the humans living there. Referred to as the Gray, the Tau and mankind engaged in centuries of peaceful trading and mutual support. Unknown to their allies, the Tau were also taking steps to ensure that contact between “their” humans, and those within the Imperium of Man never took place. Unfortunately this scheme was discovered in the year 7017 when a Prowler pilot named Jammer survived an ambush, and was rescued by a passing Rogue Trader. Horrified by this betrayal of trust, the humans within the Expanse turned from their allies to their long lost bretheran. Since that time, the Imperium’s influence has grown, and the alliance between the Tau and the humans of the Expanse has broken down to open hostilities.