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Tze't
Alien
Homeworld:
Z't'ti, Sector +11,+12,-02  
Ecology:
Nitrogen-Oxygen-Water (H:E:1:7)  
Biology:
DNA I  
Languages:
Grand Federation A  
Human Contact:
3241CE  
FTL Status:
32,436BC - Grand Federation assisted  
Current Status:
Grand Federation member from 32,436BC, Grand Federation Primary Race from 30,525BC  
   
Environment
Ideal
Tolerance
 
Atmosphere:
.18B O2 .11-.28B O2; CO2 < .08B  
Temperature:
290K 273-300K  
Gravity:
0.90G 0.00-1.25G  
Other:
Humidity 20% Humidity 01-99%  

Overview

The Tze't are a Grand Federation of Races Primary Race specializing in organic technology.  These six-limbed oxygen-breathers are the leading proponents of the Radical philosophy, though much more pragmatic than their extinct Teechiri mentors.

Physical Description

A standard or "modern" Tze't adult is a squat 1.5 meter high hexaform with a set of fine manipulator multi-segmented arms ending in six fingers, a set of two-jointed intermediate limbs ending in four-clawed paws, and a set of singly jointed legs ending in three talons.  The Tze't head has four yellow eyes: two forward and two sideward, and a toothed dorsal mouth, used for eating, breathing and speaking.  The lower forward "face" contains seven slit-like olfactory sensors. The brain resides in a large hump on the upper back.  Tze't are covered in a fine fur, normally purple, though other colors, ranging from brown to pink occur "naturally".  As the Tze't have spent long millennia modifying their form, this is not the original body arrangement with which they reached sentience.  A "primitive" tan-furred Tze't had three sets of limbs similar to the modern intermediates and a smaller brain hump.  Tze't variants are common and diverse, encompassing everything from cosmetic alterations to additional limbs and adaptation to hostile atmosphere, from water to methane to vacuum, much like the set of accepted Human variants, though no Tze't fliers exist.  Regardless of variation, Tze't do not wear clothing, except equipment harnesses and hostile environment gear.  Tze't genitalia are prominently located on the lower abdomen and have a secondary communication function.

Physiological and Social Development

The Tze't are a race of hermaphrodites, with all individuals sporting two bright red spike-like male organs and two white petal-like female organs on their lower abdomen.  Intimate contact between Tze't is common and considered a form of private conversation and pleasant diversion; it does not result in conception unless both Tze't partners agree, then one or both partners will become pregnant.  Tze't give birth to a single young after a year-long gestation.  The young is fully ambulatory and socially functional within a year and remains with its birth parent until adulthood at age ten.  Tze't society is highly individualistic, with long term institutions forming for specific administrative or commercial purposes, but with personnel turnover remaining high, as Tze't seek new challenges and interests. 

The Tze't civilization is based entirely on organic technology.  The Tze't have modified themselves and other Z't'ti life forms to provide shelter, transportation, electronics, power, even low-level quantum computing.  The Tze't control their creations using bio-link technology, utilizing glands in their brain to mentally link with their organic possessions across planetary distances.  The Tze't often create Avatars of themselves, often, but not necessarily, bio-linked.  These Avatars contain a subset of the Tze't consciousness and often conduct tasks considered too risky or too uncomfortable for the Tze't base personality to endure.  Avatars are often indistinguishable from the parent Tze't, though incapable of reproduction, but can also take other forms, everything from organic starships to facsimiles of other races.  By Tze't and Grand Federation law, an Avatar has no individual rights; it is considered an extension of the core individual, who may do with its Avatar as it pleases, but who is also considered responsible for its Avatar's actions.  In some rare instances, a Tze't may "emancipate" its Avatar, creating a free legal entity under Grand Federation law.  The Tze't have long been fervent, though pragmatic adherents of the Radical cause.  In their core belief, they are merely Avatars of a higher dimensional being, and their goal in life is to achieve transcendence and emancipation from this existence.

Tze't core individuals are resilient and often risk-averse, using bio-linked creatures and Avatars in dangerous situations.  They may also bio-link their core personalities into a specially created "brain tree", an organic storage system, and then generate a new Avatar to become the new core personality.  For these reasons, an individual Tze't personality can persist for thousands of years, though insanity and catatonia among the elderly is common.  This age-related decline is often confused with a pre-transcendent state.  Regardless, some respected and still functional Tze't elders predate the Consolidation War period.

History

Early Tze't history is shrouded in myth as the Tze't are rare in that they developed a technological society prior to a written language.  Before they transferred oral tradition into permanent records, they had achieved a global civilization with an organic technology equivalent to the middle industrial era.  Early myths concern the domestication of other organisms, the awakening of the bio-link gland and the development of enzymes to modify various life forms.  The Tze't modified a balloon-like flyer to produce and combine hydrogen and oxygen, creating an effective orbital launch system by 32,500BC.  The Teechiri initiated contact soon thereafter, seeing the Tze't as a kindred race.  The Tze't advanced rapidly though Grand Federation civilization, sending Avatars to explore varied worlds, and developing countless new organic technologies in cooperation with the Teechiri.  They became a Primary Race in 30,525BC, just before the Founders withdrew, and became a leading Radical race soon thereafter.

Unlike their patrons, the Tze't survived the Consolidation Wars without severe hardship.  At heart, the Tze't are peaceful (the Eenikiti say cowardly), and more interested in the commerce of goods and ideas than strict ideology or cultural dominance.  As such, they remained the only Radical Primary race, but maintained good relations with most Grand Federation Races of all philosophies, often providing advanced biomedicals to aid those races in longevity.  The Tze't were early and constant supporters of the Heshar, but during the War of Liberation, the Tze't remained scrupulously neutral, refusing to aid either side in a struggle they felt was be disastrous to the Grand Federation, whatever the outcome.

The Tze't saw the emergence of the Empire of Humanity as a great opportunity of expansion and commerce, though they, or their Avatars, fought loyally in all the wars against the Humans.  After the Wars, the Tze't along with the Zhretra were the Primary Races most friendly to the Humans, initiating trade agreements and settling in the Coreward border regions.  The Mech Plague struck the organic-based Tze't as well, as they relied on non-organics for advanced quantum devices and materials.  However, by 4778CE the Tze't had reinstructed a pre-Consolidation organic superconductor that replaced the Voltan and Markan-based Plague vulnerable materials.  The Tze't weathered the early Plague years well, maintaining an interstellar civilization based on organic macrojump vessels, and developing organic-based vacuum distillers in 5048CE and organic quantum brains for microjump vessels in 5794CE.

Current Status

The Tze't inhabit approximately two thousand words, including large organic drift habitats, and have communities on many Zhretra Drift cities, including some within Human Space. The current Tze't population is approximately two trillion individuals, not counting Tze't Avatars, which are at least three times as numerous as the Tze't themselves.  The Tze't are generally friendly toward Humanity, supporting especially the adherents of the Technologist and Mechanist faiths, with whom they share some beliefs.  Most relations with Humans are commercial, not philosophical, and the Tze't often use Human agents to advance their agendas both within and outside the Grand Federation.  The Tze't have gained in stature since the Plague struck, and relations with the Un'aa'graum and Eenikiti are frosty for this reason and from historical enmity.  Relations with the other Primary Races are neutral, but supported by a healthy commercial exchange.

Notes

A Tze't encountered in Human Space is often as not an Avatar sent on some errand by its core personality.  These Avatars may appear and act entirely Human or as members of another species, and may not be obviously identifiable.  The Tze't often collaborate with the Zhretra, mixing organic and mechanoid components in designs, and cooperating in economic policy.

 

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