One of the Guardians' Spheres attacks
The Guardians are an alien civilization native to an extradimensional realm
separate from the nuances of the space-time continuum.  As a result,
the Guardians are able to perceive hundreds of different timelines
stretching hundreds of years into both the past and the future.  Over
the span of several centuries, the Guardians used their temporal
knowledge to manipulate the Milky Way galaxy to make it more suitable
for their habitation.  (“Azati Prime” [ENT]).  The initial attempt took
place in 2421, some 2,000 light years from the Federation in a region of
space known as the Kasuto Expanse.  (“
Dimensional Analysis” [TFF]).  In
order to make the expanse suitable for habitation, the Guardians
erected a series of large, interconnected spheres that gradually altered
the composition of the space-time continuum via interspatial anomalies.  
(“Harbinger” [ENT]).
On stardate 76334 (May 2399), the crew of the USS Starlight was experimenting with a new temporal shield matrix aboard the shuttlecraft
Epoch.  The experiment ended prematurely when the Epoch was attacked by an Iconian station.  While the Epoch survived the attack, the
incident sent shockwaves throughout the timeline and brought the Federation to the attention of the Guardians.  They soon decided the
Federation posed a threat to their plans, and thusly decided to capture the Epoch for additional study.  Because they were unable to exist
in normal space, the Guardians had no choice but to coerce other species to do their biddings.  At that point, the Epoch had ventured
twenty years into the future, and was adrift in the Sovara System, very near
Yelss territory.

The Guardians contacted a
Yelss mercenary by the name of Ixdrinex in 2419, and convinced him to retrieve the Epoch.  Ixdrinex complied,
but the limitations of Yelss technology became evident two years later, when the transport carrying the Epoch to a Guardian facility in the
Kasuto Expanse was captured by the Federation Starship Majestic.  Desperate to retrieve the Epoch, the Guardians provided the Yelss with
Rishar’aa Class warships.  Ixdrinix engaged the Majestic in the Kasuto Expanse—only to be thwarted by another faction of Yelss, from
even further into the future.  They absconded with the Epoch and set into motion the events that would see the shuttle crew returned to
its proper time.  Because the timelines indicated the Federation was far weaker in the past—and thusly easier to conquer—the Guardians
abandoned the Yelss and contacted a race known as the Xindi.  (“Dimensional Analysis” [TFF]).

When the Guardians arrived, the Xindi were a relatively weak species recovering from a devastating civil war that ended with the destruction
of the Xindi Homeworld.  In order to garner the Xindi’s trust, the Guardians helped the Xindi restore their empire, showing them habitable
planets and valuable resources to harvest.  Meanwhile, the Guardians built a series of spheres similar to the ones in the Kasuto Expanse in
order to resume their reconfiguration of the Milky Way.   (“The Council” [ENT]).  In May 2152, the Guardians informed the Xindi Council that
humanity would launch an attack on the Xindi that would result in their complete and total annihilation.  The Guardians suggested the Xindi
strike first to prevent the attack.  (“Azati Prime” [ENT]).  The Council agreed and attacked Earth with a prototype superweapon in April
2153.  The attack was a success, and shifted the timelines back into the Guardians’ favor; they summarily continued to reconfigure the
region of space within the Delpic Expanse for their own habitation.  (“The Expanse” [ENT]).
The Guardians in their realm.
Guardians (Sphere Builders)
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In December 2153, the Guardians sent one of their people into a large anomaly within the Delphic
Expanse, apparently a test subject to see if the spheres were successfully reconfiguring the Milky
Way to suit their needs.  The subject was discovered by the crew of the USS Enterprise; after he was
removed from the anomaly, his body began to deteriorate because of his innate incompatibility with
our universe.  The test subject eventually died, but not before causing minor damage to the
Enterprise.  (“Harbinger” [ENT]).  

In early 2154 the Guardians were forced to go on the defensive when several of the Xindi factions
began to question the validity of the Guardians’ claims about humanity.  This forced to Guardians to
coerce the Reptilian and Insectoid factions to hijack the superweapon being constructed for a final
assault on Earth.  (“Countdown” [ENT]).  The Reptilians eventually turned on the Insectoids and took
the weapon for themselves—however, the remaining Xindi factions worked in collusion with the
Humans and the Andorians to destroy the weapon before it reached Earth.  The Guardians themselves
suffered a major defeat when the Enterprise attacked and destroyed Sphere 41 inside the Delphic
Expanse.  The sphere’s destruction caused the entire network to collapse, effectively dissipating the
Expanse and forcing the Guardians into retreat.  (“Zero Hour” [ENT]).