The Plexxans took the technology of the Directorate and repurposed it for their own use. They were no stranger to interstellar travel, and they formed space-caravans and began spreading out into the galaxy to explore other star systems in ISY-15.
After millennia of servitude to the Directorate, the Plexxans were loathed to reestablish a centralized powerful government. Instead, channelling a desire for individual freedom, like-minded individuals gathered over the following decades into independent city-states and Space-caravans called Freeholds. Each Freehold was responsible for managing its own affairs, and for choosing Stewards to represent them at the Assembly. Each Steward represented one or multiple Freeholds and their interests before the assembly. Every citizen of the federation has a direct real-time vote for who their Steward is at any time. Within the Assembly, minister positions were voted upon or granted. These individuals would be responsible for Federation matters that affected all Plexxans.
By ISY-227 Freehold caravans were engaged in trading with much of the galaxy and had Freeholds in a number of systems. They had been warned away from Sol by Preservers who warned them of a militant race of Simians intend on Galactic domination, and so avoided contact with them, focusing on trade and diplomacy elsewhere. The Terran Empire could not be avoided forever though, and that year an Imperial Exploratory Fleet arrived to Castor and offered them terms to join the Terran Empire. The Plexxans refused and the “Brunneran Incident” began.
For months the Terrans blockadedBrunneran and awaited reinforcements from Sol. The Warships of the Plexxans were superior, but the Terrans numbers greater and the standoff continued until the Terrans captured a Freehold caravan returning to Castor. It came as a shock to both races when they discovered they were both humans. At first, the Terrans believed it was a sign that long lost Terrans would be reunited with the Empire, but ongoing negotiations proved that they were equally old, yet genetically similar enough to be a single species.
After agreeing to revisit a treaty, and open trade negotiations, the Exploratory fleet departed and Terrans and Plexxans would remain in close contact though neither side fully trusted the other.