William Manchee

Novelist


 

LIFEFORMS ON TARIZON

 


The Rhutz

 

The Rhutz looks like a cross between a dog and a wolf. Its pronounced, "Rhutzzz." They didn't usually like people. They're were tolerated and left alone by the humans because they controlled the rodent population and the holy man Sandee used to have one as a pet. It was thought by many to be a sin to kill a Rhutz, if you dared try.

 

Many cycles earlier, when the world was in conflict and found itself on the brink of self-destruction, the great Sandee Brahn took up the cause of unification and the institution of a world government under the Supreme Mandate. Since all would have been lost had Sandee Brahn failed, the Rhutz stood beside him and helped him restore stability to Tarizon.

 

After unification, the Rhutz retreated once again into the background, not caring to have any sort of relationship with the human race. The Rhutz only sought to be left alone to live in peace. Twenty cycles later the great eruptions came and as a matter of survival of the planet the Rhutz joined with Central Authority to respond to the global crisis that threatened the very existence of life on Tarizon.

 

Forty cycles after the great eruptions, the Rhutz was again forced into an alliance with humans. The Purists, who had recently seized power under Videl Lai, ordered the genocide of the Rhutz as they did for every other life form on Tarizon that refused to be subjected to slavery. They preferred not to be involved in the conflict as it was against their nature, but the survival of their species was at stake, leaving them no choice.

The Rhutz had the unique ability to communicate with every other Rhutz on the planet and acted collectively to protect one another? This was because each Rhutz had two levels of consciousness. They had an individual consciousness in which they lived their daily lives independent of each other. But above that primary consciousness there was also a collective consciousness that was common with every other living Rhutz on Tarizon. The collective consciousness was rarely invoked but when it was, it interrupted the Rhutzprimary consciousness and put him in direct communication with every other Rhutz on Tarizon.

 

This was how Rhin the Rhutz had been recruited to befriend the Liberator. When Threebeard told him that the Liberator had arrived on Tarizon all Rhutz knew through their collective consciousness that he must be found and protected.


Nanomites


The Nanomites are a microscopic life-form living on Tarizon. They are highly intelligent as evidenced by their building and engineering skills and their ability to communication almost instantaneously. They live in swarms. Each swarm is controlled by a swarmmaster who communicates and controls all of the individual Nanomites. They are very small by themselves but together in a swarm they can be quite large. Still, you couldn't see them with the naked eye as they usually live inside a solid object. The buildings they construct are designed by architects whose designs are communicated to the swarm through the swarmmaster who controls them.

 

The swarmmaster communicates with the swarm in a similar manner as the human brain controls the cells of our body, except the Nanomites donít have to be connected. They only have to be in the swarm field to be under the control of the swarmmaster. This gives them the ability to avoid barriers and slip through cracks and voids in an object they are penetrating. It takes many people to culture and nourish the Nanomites swarms and care for them between building projects and it takes months for the building to grow into fruition.


Prior to unification, the Nanomites had never been considered an intelligent life form. Being extremely small, so small a human could only see them in a microscope, it was thought they were like plants with little or no intelligence or ability to communicate. But a scientist name Baldridge became interested in the Nanomites after the great eruptions and went to the Nanomiteís desert homeland to study them. He estimated there were about five million swarms at the time. In the course of his study he discovered that their numbers had remained fairly stable since scientists had begun studying them shortly after unification under the Supreme Mandate. He wondered why their population hadnít grown and expanded. Was it that they needed certain chemicals and nutrients that only existed in their desert homeland, or did the desert climate have something to do with it? His finally realized it was both. The Nanomites needed a dry environment to build. Moisture slowed them down and made it impossible for them to work efficiently. They also needed a chemical called bacuum that was naturally produced in the desert where they lived.

 

Baldridge conjectured that the number of swarms would multiply almost geometrically if they were put in an ideal environment and given all the chemical ingredients they needed. When Baldridge asked his fellow scientists if they could reproduce bacuum in the laboratory, they assured him they could. This excited him since it meant he could take them anywhere on the planet to build, as long as he kept the construction site dry.

 

Of course, increasing the Nanomite population would do Baldridge no good unless somehow he could communicate with them and get them to build structures that would be useful to the government in the recovery effort. So, his study turned to figuring out how to communicate with them and get them to build structures that would be useful to the government in the recovery effort. So, his study turned to figuring out how to communicate with them.

 

In researching previous pre-eruption studies of the Nanomites, he learned that the swarmmaster, a loosely connected array of super-Nanomites, acted as the brain of the swarm and controlled its members within a swarm field. Nobody knew exactly how the swarmmaster communicated with each of the individual Nanomites in the swarm field, but it was presumed there was some kind of common will within the swarm. This led Baldwin to experiment with telepathic communication.

 

To do this he enlisted the help of those most gifted with telepathic abilities. Although, none of these persons were able to establish reliable communication with the Nanomites, there was some reaction from the Nanomites to their efforts. This made Baldridge believe he was on the right track. What he needed was someone with stronger or more precise telepathic abilities. This is when he was told about Threebeard, the mutant Peter mentioned earlier.

 

It was said the three-headed mutant Threebeard was the most intelligent person on the planet, and he proved it by quickly establishing telepathic communication with the Nanomite swarmmasters. He confirmed that they were indeed intelligent, disciplined, and a vibrant life form that could be quite useful to the Central Authority. Even better was the fact that the Nanomites were a docile life form. Their primary concern was survival. They were natural builders, because they had to protect their population from the environment, specifically rain and moisture. That was why they had learned to build such strong and magnificent structures.


 

Using his telepathic abilities, Threebeard could communicate with the swarmmasters almost instantaneously. In time Threebeard taught other humans with telepathic abilities to communicate with them too. This was fortunate for Central Authority, for Threebeard soon withdrew from the project when he realized that it cared little about the Nanomites as a life form and only sought to exploit them.


Seafolken


The Seafolken are a race of humans on Tarizon that adapted to life in the sea. A full blood Seafolken has a tough light green skin, feet and hands that become webbed while in water. They are amazingly strong, fast runners, and can communicate telepathically. The quarter breeds can look almost like a normal human except for the gills. Female Seafolken were known for their beauty and sexual allure. In the past the Seafolken were a peaceful life-form without political ambition. They only ruled the sea to keep the ruthless ocksharks from taking control. The ocksharks were an evil species who delighted in killing and murdering all living things. Luckily the Seafolken were invincible and even the Ocksharks dared not challenge them.


Many humans considered the Seafolken as inferior beings and held them in contempt. Seafolken were often hunted down, captured and enslaved. It wasnít easy to enslave them as they were so strong and bullets couldnít penetrate their thick skin. But technology finally brought the Seafolken to their knees when scientists came up with the bulletbomb, a bullet that is really a combination bullet and bomb. The front of the bulletbomb is a traditional bullet and fires normally. The bullet lodges in the target and then a tik later the other end of the bullet explodes. The Seafolken were so quick they sometimes could pick out a bullet that had lodged in their skin and cast them aside.


It was the great volcanic eruptions that drew them out of the sea. The sea became so polluted that the fish they usually fed on couldn't survive. At first Central Authority fed them as a humanitarian gesture, but soon they demanded service from the Seafolken in exchange for food. Eventually it turned to slavery and those who refused were killed.

 

During the civil war the Seafolken aligned themselves with the Loyalist who promised them freedom.


Drogals

A Drogal is a bird twice the size of any human being. It's native to the Drogal Mountain on the island of Muhl in the Southern Sea. Its natural prey are mountain rats, durk birds, and range deer but if it's hungry or feels threatened it will eat humans as well. The Drogal Mountains is a dangerous place and few men have ever made it across alive. You can't just shoot a Drogal if they come after you. They are not afraid of guns since bullets do them little damage. Ninety three percent of their body is fluff and they don't even notice a bullet going through it. You'd have to get lucky and hit the seven percent that mattered. A laser doesnít work either it just makes them mad. The only good news is the Drogals don't feed at night. So anyone travel through the Drogal Mountains have to travel when itís dark and hide during the day.