Catian

Catians are a humanoid primate race of non-terrestrials. Although not allies with Earth, they have signed a specific non-aggression treaty following the Catain War. The Catian homeworld is known as Catia and orbits a large gas giant known as Echaya.

Appearance

Catians are humanoid in appearance and, having descended from primates themselves, are very similar in build and body shape to humans however, one of the most striking features of this race is that a Catian’s hair normally grows in two or more different colors giving them a two-toned or calico look. Catians also sport a pair of sharpened incisors and have been known to use them in close combat.

Physiologically, Catains are just as strong as humans and possess near the same sensory perception.

History

The following figures are provided using the traditional Earth calendar.

  • July 2, 2003: Catians first achieve spaceflight when a single Catian completes three orbits of Catia in a pod.
  • February 21, 2078: Catians begin to colonize the other moons of Echaya. Eventually, five successful colonies arise.
  • December 20, 2581: A Catian starship arrives at Alpha Centauri and discovers that humans have set up a settlement there. Seeing it as an incursion into their territory by a potentially aggressive species, the colony is bombed from orbit and completely destroyed resulting in over 562 deaths.
  • December 21, 2581: An Earth rescue and task force fleet arrives at Alpha Centauri to answer the distress call from the colony. They encounter the Catians and a battle ensues which results in massive losses on both sides. With no clear winner, both sides retreat from the scene.
  • December 23, 2581: The Earth Fleet returns to Alpha Centauri with greater numbers and the Diplomatic Corps to try and open talks. Catia agrees to the talks which are held on one of the habitable planets in the Alpha Centauri system.
  • December 25, 2581: Talks break down. An explosion on the Diplomatic Corps ship leads many to accuse the Catians of terrorism. Catia maintains its innocence and demands that Earth withdraws. When Earth refuses, war is declared.
  • April 30, 2598: After seventeen years of war, Catia unconditionally surrenders after loosing the Battle of Malestair and a critical supply line.
  • May 11, 2598: During negotiations, Catia is required to pay restitution to the Space Force and to the families of everyone affected by the war. Catia agrees.
  • May 12, 2598: The Catian economy collapses. Many demand that the queen resign, but Empress Cartasia refuses to step down or take the blame for her disastrous handling of the war.
  • May 14, 2598: Empress Cartasia is dragged out of her family castle and executed in front of a crown of thousands. Cartasia’s former viceroy, Gartay Leonis, is installed as King ending a long tradition of matriarchy on the planet. A frequent attacker of Cartasia during the final years of her reign, Leonis is surprised by the move and promises reform in the government.
  • May 20, 2598: Emperor Leonis makes the unprecedented move of sharing his power by installing nine well respected families as satellite monarchs to introduce a system of checks and balances to the throne. What is more is that Leonis decrees that the families will be selected by general election. The Catians accept and embrace this change and see it as the beginning of a new age.
  • July 15, 2598: The Nine Families are selected: The Kreese, the Ovaltones, the Altaines, the Thears, the Palitones, the Smakies, the Katts, the Mondalies, and the Roivas familes are voted into the monarchy. Each of the nine families were noted for promoting peace with interplanetary neighbors and were elected in landslide victories against those to promoted a more active military. The election is seen as a turning point for Catia as it embraced pacifism over aggression.
  • June 1, 2608: A group of one hundred exchange officers are sent to Earth on a goodwill mission to become part of the Officer Exchange Program. In return, Earth sends twenty of its own officers to serve on Catia.
  • August 20, 2608: Fifty Catains are assigned to the Earth ship Starseeker. The other fifty are assigned elsewhere on Earth or their surrounding planets in the solar system.
  • September 29, 2008: Starseeker is launched on her first mission. Hauvie Cordaine becomes the first Catian bridge officer on an Earth ship after Starseeker’s original pilot is killed in an accident.

Religion

According to Catian scripture, the entire planet was birthed from Echaya, the gas giant that Catia orbits. Many began to see the planet which, along with its rings, can occupy as much as eighty percent of the sky, as God herself. In fact “Echaya” literally translates into “Maker” and it often referred to as “The Great Maker.”

Catian religion holds that The Great Maker created Catia and then left it to grow on its own thus the Catians do not subscribe to the idea that an all powerful being is controlling their lives or will help them in any way. All the same, many still pray to Echaya in thanks for giving them life. This movement was only bolstered by scientific findings that the planet was indeed born from the gas giant in a catastrophic collision many billions of years ago.

Catians do not subscribe to a traditional belief in the afterlife, but do believe that one day a great catastrophe will strike as the Death Bringers, a quartet of gods from their ancient scriptures, will return and push Catia back into Echaya which will result in the planet’s rebirth and second life where all the mistakes of the past will be avoided and the society will enjoy paradise.

Society

Since Catia only has one continent, the planet has long enjoyed a one-world government ruled by a succession of familial monarchies in a tradition that has rarely wavered though it is not out of the question for an unfavorable king to be disposed of by the will of the people.

Following the planet’s humiliating defeat in the Catian War, the highly unpopular monarchy was overthrown and executed and, for the first time in recorded history, oversight was added into the political mix as nine families now rule the planet under the umbrella of a single planetary monarch. The end of the war also precipitated a full on peace movement on the planet which has led to the deposition of many government officials the populous sees as warmongers.

Visitors to Catia are often shocked by the planet’s attitude towards sex and nudity as the natives never developed the sense of modesty that most races in the galaxy have. Catain sexual practices are very casual and are as common as hugs and handshakes on Earth. More astounding is that Catians society never developed a barrier between male and female relationships and so homosexual couplings are just as common as heterosexual couplings. There is, in fact, no words in the Catian language for “homosexual” or “bisexual” as relations between two people of the same sex are commonplace and perfectly natural.

Catian marriages are also strange to people unaccustomed to their traditions. Marriages on Catia do not constitute an explicit partnership between two people, but are seen rather as contracts to produce and raise offspring or as a convenient financial arrangement. It is not uncommon for a Catian to take more than one spouse and for those spouses to have more than one spouse as well.

Marriages must be approved by the mother and father of both parties. As a coupling between a male and a female will most likely result in childbirth, the parents or guardians of the prospective bride and/or groom must accept their offspring’s choice of a mate which could include a physical examination or watching the potential in-law in the sexual act and grading their progress.

If a coupling results in conception, the male and female responsible will raise the child in the super-family acting as a mother/father unit. The average Catian reaches puberty between the ages of 12-15 and immediately becomes sexually active.

An interesting note about Catians is that the concept of keeping pets is completely alien to them. Although they have domesticated large birds and beasts to use for food, having an animal as a companion is something they do not understand and actually find distasteful, starting rumors on their planet that humans keep dogs and cats as sexual companions.

Perceptions

Catains are generally perceived as intelligent beings, though they do appear naïve when it comes to other cultures and can become overwhelmed and frustrated when confronted by what they perceive as ridged moral standards.

Human religious leaders have openly mocked Catian society as “Sodom and Gomorra” in space and have only added to the anti-Catian sentiment on Earth.

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