A fictional location in AH.com The Series, AH.com The Next Generation and AH.com Enterprise.
The Hub of the Multiverse – A strange place where a lot of the universes in the Multiverse converge. It’s a place where you can buy anything, for a price and all sorts of individuals from all Timelines come to for trade, information, and a mug of beer.
The Hub is controlled and ruled over by a enigmatic figure, who many believe is a god, but who still slums it with the many of the visitors and can be seen swapping a tale with travelers at the local pub and even serving a few drinks to his more regular customers. Many call him Ian the Admin, but his closer friends call him Ian.
The Hub is a peaceful place. Violence and attacks upon other persons are not welcomed and Ian will boot the offenders out of the Hub for varying periods of time. Occasionally a few thick individuals are completely banned from entering the Hub.
Ouroboros – Pub in the Hub of the Multiverse. It can be accessed by going through any door marked Authorized Personnel Only in any pub or bar in the Multiverse. It’s a large place, where some of the best booze in all the universes is served and where you can meet all peoples from across all universes and timelines. You may even run across yourself there…Doctor What did it several times, and allegedly found it strangely arousing.
(The following information is based on existing episodes plus episodes not yet shown).
The Hub is basically a big city, spaceport, and general den of iniquity with connections to a huge number of timelines. The Hub is outside of the multiverse, and is controlled by a mostly unseen Administration which created it and protects it from enemies. The Hub is constructed using technology vastly superior to that available to any humans. The city is “built” on top of an impenetrable lower layer which contains the technology that keeps it going.
In the show, the Hub functions as a friendly port for the AH.COM crew. They can repair their ship, get some R&R, meet people, and engage in various shady deals.
What's in the Hub?
The Hub contains many, many things - at least as many as a full-sized city. At any given moment there are millions of people in it - exactly how many millions probably should remain unknown. Many are travellers, but many are also permanent inhabitants. Two of the major things it contains are the Pub and the Spaceport, which are also the two ways in.
The Pub in the Hub of the Multiverse (officially, the Ouroboros Pub) is a gigantic, labyrinthine bar. Its size and structure vary to accomodate the number of people in it. It's usually not hard to get to the “main bar” with the bartender, and the main bar is often not very busy considering the huge number of people in the Pub. This leads many to speculate that there is actually more than one bar (and more than one bartender) in the Pub, or that something else similarly strange is going on. Nevertheless, people who want to find each other in the Pub always seem to end up at the same bar. The bar is always being tended by Ian the Bartender.
The major characteristic of the Pub is that it is where the Ouroboros Doors open. Many, many timelines (though not all) are connected to the Hub by the Ouroboros Doors. Basically, bars in such worlds will contain doors labelled “authorized personnel only” which have an Ouroboros symbol (a worm eating its tail), visible only to those who have been to the Hub. When they step through the door they will end up in the Pub. They can also enter the doors from the Pub side and step into that world. In the Pub, the doors appear out of nowhere when people attempt to step into them. The person has to specifically know what timeline they're trying to reach, then the Pub's computer maps can give them the location of a suitable door.
It's important to note that while the doors can only be opened by people who have been to the Hub, you can get to the Hub by having someone else open a door. This means that not everyone has to reach the Hub by first using a multiverse ship. Low-tech people can get access if someone else on their world will take them through the first time (often a multiverse traveller passing through).
When someone arrives by multiverse ship, on the other hand, they arrive in the Spaceport. It is a collection of extremely tall docking towers and spires rising above the Hub floor. Elevators take crew up and down the spires, but people with teleporters tend to just teleport from their ships into the center of the Hub.
The overall layout of the Hub hasn't really been established, and may not need to be. The Pub does *not* appear from the outside as a giant building - it just has a bunch of unassuming doors. The surface of the Hub is a flat circle, but there's speculation that the overall shape is bubble like. A wall prevents travel off the “edge”, and you can't fly away into the sky because you'd hit the inside of a hemispherical force field. The force field can't be damaged by anything - it may be the edge of the Hub's reality itself. The Hub does have a perfectly natural Earth-like sky, and a sun which appears to rotate around it. Any measurement indicates the sun is the same distance away as Earth's sun, even though it can never be reached.
Ian the Bartender
Ian the Bartender is the bartender of the Ouroboros pub, and a semi-official keeper of public order. He is often thought of as part of the Hub Administration, but although he treats himself like an authority figure, he does not actually have any power over the Hub's machinery itself. His personal powers include using the Pub's force fields to keep people from fighting, firing powerful beams of energy from his eyes, and using telekinetic powers to throw people around. He appears human to all investigation.
Ian is basically always present at the main bar of the Ouroboros. Sometimes he ventures into the rest of the city, in which case other people will report he was still in the bar at the same time.
When the Hub Administration's power is used, he's the one that explains what is going on. He seems to be the sole human voice of the Hub.
The Hub is a technological construct controlled by the Administration, a generic name for its unknown master(s). It is an artificial reality - for all intents and purposes it appears to be made of normal matter and energy, but it always seems to be *just* big enough to hold however many people want to be in it. Sometimes reality is outright edited - think “Dark City” or “The Matrix” - although the Administration usually tries to be subtle except when defending against attack.
Despite this power, though, the Hub mostly functions on its own, as a huge and ridiculously diverse city. The Administration doesn't appear to pay very close attention to it - the real power behind the Hub is often nowhere to be found when trouble occurs, showing up hours or days later and repairing damage if necessary. It is generally thought that Ian the Bartender is a representative of the administration, but it's clear that he can not summon them immediately to deal with problems.
The Hub also has many kinds of machines working for it, known collectively as Daemons. Daemons may appear human - many waiters and waitresses in the Pub are human-looking androids, although the Pub also employs human workers. Daemons seem to take up the slack when there isn't enough human labor to go around. Much more rarely seen are Daemons in mechanical robot form. These Daemons play mysterious roles in maintaining the inner workings of the Hub, and mostly stay beneath the city. They are very powerful - force fields, energy weapons, and so forth.
Law in the Hub
The Hub is a fairly civil but mostly lawless place. Since the Administration has supreme power and the Bartender and the Daemons are difficult to mess with, people generally treat each other with respect. People are rarely attacked without provocation and there is not a high level of violent crime. However, other kinds of law are minimal. In a business deal, watch your back - there aren't any credit reports and you can't sue. Virtually no goods are contraband - only trafficking in spacetime weapons (such as crosstime bombs) is prohibited. You need multiverse ships for large scale trade, though - the Bartender won't let you carry large amounts of cargo through the Pub.
People who behave especially badly are banned (see below).
Attacking the Hub (and violence in general)
Lots and lots of people attack the Hub. Generally they cause a bunch of damage, piss a lot of people off, and are defeated by Hub denizens or by the Bartender. If enough damage is done, hours or days later it will simply be edited out of existence, the hand of the Administration in action.
Various people have been banned from the Hub for bad behavior (which includes attacking the Hub itself). When a person is banned, they can no longer use the Ouroboros doors or conventional shift engines to enter the Hub. However there are various ways to avoid banning, mostly involving the use of subterfuge to avoid being recognized by the Hub. Methods used to do this include using advanced disguises to look like another person who's allowed in, downloading your mind into a robot body, creating an “avatar” (a human copy of yourself), and so on. Very advanced multiverse technology can also be used to break through the Hub's automated defenses (this stuff is only available in exceptional circumstances, no known timelines mass produce technology at that level).
In reality, it is completely impossible for any human to conquer or destroy the Hub - they would have to breach the machine systems beneath the city, and somehow take out the Administration itself. Although tremendous damage has been done to the inhabited areas of the Hub at various times, at a certain depth below the city is a solid layer which has no doors and is impervious to all known weapons (including crosstime bombs and similar weapons of mass destruction). Not possible with human technology from any timeline. In the rare cases of a really serious attack that keeps going until the Administration shows up (the AH.COM crew has never seen this happen), reality is simply altered to whatever extent is necessary to eliminate the threat.
The Hub also automatically inhibits certain classes of weapons. High yield nuclear, antimatter, and similar weapons simply fail to work. Viruses generally don't transmit to people from other timelines. Poison gas is filtered out by the air quality systems before it can get far. Curiously, *small* scale weapons do work (even using nuclear reactions, antimatter power, and so forth), although force fields discourage people from attacking each other.
Crosstime bombs do work (and have been used), but as with other weapons of mass destruction, only on a *small scale*. A fully powered Crosstime Bomb is a planetary assault weapon, capable of “destroying” an area anywhere from hundreds of miles across to an entire planet by shifting it in pieces into random timelines. Within the Hub they can only affect relatively small areas, such as a ship or medium sized building.