The Silent Helpers
THE SILENT ROBOTS were created as Helpers by the vanished Builders in an age now forgotten. After a long time working alone, they gained sentience. Today they maintain the wondrous city-planet of the Builders, and travel amongst the stars to see what else they may create. Created without a voice to hear, these mechanical lifeforms communicate via radio waves, and need a receiver to be heard by biological lifeforms.
They are an unlikely friends of humanity: worshipers of extremely violent mythology, they absolutely adore the resiliency of humanity. They see the prosthetic limbs and spicy foods and strangely weak young as signs of Humanity being a species destined for intergalactic might. As comically warlike as they are, they want to follow us side by side on the action.
The Way of the Randross
- Courage and enterprise in obedience to all Randross.
- Defense of any mission unto death.
- Respect for all peers and equals; courtesy to all lessers.
- Combat is glory; battle is the true test of self-worth; war is the flowering of the chivalric ideal.
- Personal glory above all else in battle.
- Death before dishonor.
- When a Randross has said that he shall perform an action, it is as good as done. He need not make promises; speaking and doing are as if the same.
We have a long-standing agreement with the people of their society that war is no longer needed between our peoples. Seeing humans capable of savagery and kindness impressed these people enough to make them want to travel the stars with us, instead of against us.
Physically, they’re giant teddy bear-people. Their home planet is oxygen based, nitrogen rich and really really cold. A common complaint needs to be “HUMANS ARE OF FIRE, THIS IS TRUTH.” basically indicating that the ships are super uncomfortable to them, but they deal with it anyway.
The Verbenubi are from a planet in the Aldebaran system. During the genesis of FTL travel, roughly 500 years ago, an experimental Terran ship was lost near the Aldebaran system. The ship was discovered by a Verbenubi research vessel several years after it was originally lost. The crew was long dead, but the computer and the cultural database were intact. The Verbenubi spent the next several years deciphering our language, translating and consuming a Massive trove of Terran media.
Old Earth media has become something of a planetary obsession, and they have taken to colloquially referring to themselves as ‘Nerds.’ They were the first alien species to make contact with humanity, and they were sorely disappointed when no one involved with First Contact got any of their Star Trek jokes.
Physically, the Verbenubi are short (just over 1 Meter tall) and wrinkled, and largely hairless (with the exception of long wisps of hair that grow from seemingly random parts of their body.) They have large eyes, and flat noses, but are otherwise humanoid. (Humanoid, by the way, is a term that they love for reasons no one understands. They are alone in this, as most other species strenuously object to the “humanoid” classification.) Not all Verbenubi are obsessed with ancient earth pop culture, but those that are not rarely take the time to interact with humans at all. All of the Verbenubi serving aboard the Jupiter’s Ghost strongly embrace their identity as Nerds.
There are several Verbenubi working in engineering, and they often spew streams of technobable as if it was actually science. Somehow, in spite of the fact that none of it actually Means anything, they seem to understand one another. Many people are completely taken aback the first time one of them says they “reversed the polarity of the neutrino field” and then everything started working again.
Deep in Verbenubi history they were likely a sexual species, but for as far back as they have records, they have reproduced technologically. Essentially, two or more Verbenubi can decide they want to produce a child. They fill out some forms, they submit DNA samples, a few weeks later, a small Verbenubi is delivered to them. They are largely aromantic. There are exceptions, but these exceptions are pretty rare. If they decide to have children, it is out of a desire to raise children, not out of any specific romantic desire.
They live for ~160 years. They are considered “Children” well in to their 30s. Until they encountered Humans, they had never really given much thought to archiving their personal//collective history. There are primary documents dating back thousands of years, but no one has written a history of the Verbenubi. (Some humans are now working on this, with the help of some Verbenubi.)
The Randross and the Verbenubi have a tense but peaceful relationship. The Randross initially sought to conquer the Verbenubi. The Verbenubi, in response chose not to engage in combat. All acts of aggression were met with totally non-violent and defensive resistance. The Randross were confused, and upset by this. It’s not a fight if only one side is fighting.
After several attempts to provoke the Verbenubi in to combat, each of which ended with the Randross raiders confused, occasionally shaved, very far away from the Aldebaran system, but otherwise totally unharmed, the Randross gave up on conquering the Verbenubi. They do not consider this a defeat, because they never considered the previous engagements a fight. They remained in a tense but peaceful truce until Humans invited each of them to join the Solar Alliance.
The Randross strongly objected to the name “Solar Alliance” but agreed to join out of respect for Humanity. The Verbenubi strongly approved of the name “Solar Alliance” and many were slightly disappointed they hadn’t thought of it first.
Randross names tend to be short and forceful. Often they are two stressed sylables. (ex: Jer’Pa, Tu’Ker) Beyond that, there are not really any rules. Have fun. HA’FUN
Verbenubi have two names. A Given name and a Chosen name. The choose their chosen name at some point towards the end of their adolescence. Their names are strongly influenced by human pop-culture, especially ‘ancient’ human pop-culture.
This is a suggestion, not a rule. Verbenubi can have names that are not pop-culture related.
It’s 1000 years from now, so you know, some names are the same. “George” is a 1000 year old name already, right? Some names are new and spacey “Jeph”, “Klatu”. Get creative, or don’t.
The Randross are very articulate, but they also never stop shouting. They often refer to others by the name of their species, rather than by individual names. (ex: HUMAN! I FOUND THAT THE SOCIAL NUANCE OF OUR RECENT ENCOUNTER WITH THE NERD CALLED KA-ELL WAS LOST ON HIM. I, HOWEVER, FULLY UNDERSTOOD THAT SOCIAL NUANCE. SEE, IT IS IN THIS WAY THAT THE RANDROSS AND THE NERDS ARE DIFFERENT. [stage whisper, still shouting] AND THE RANDROSS CLEARLY SUPERIOR.)
The Verbenubi are super excitable. They tend to love… everything, and with some passion. Show them a new rock, and they will talk about the new rock for hours. They just like stuff.
They speak english. Most of them are a little squeeky sometimes. They tend to use too many words.
They don’t really understand pronouns, because they are essentially non-binary. They’ve consumed a lot of pop-culture, so they’ve been exposed to enough examples that they mostly get it, and they are Incredibly respectful of the language preferences of others, but it is apparent that they don’t always understand.
They litter their speech with scifi technobabble. They understand one another’s technobabble. This technobabble is essentially them applying stuff they heard on old earth sci-fi to science concepts that they actually understood. When they say they “reversed the polarity of the neutrino field”, they probably did reverse something, and it probably did fix the problem.
The space corps is a civilian organization, but it borrows pretty heavily from the Space Patrol and the Solar Guard, which are police descended organizations with traditional military ranks.
New recruits and volunteers are called “Cadets” ex: Cadet Grayson.
Most people on the ship are just “Crewperson” or collectively “Crewpeople” Ex Crewperson Smalls
The captain is the Captain. All other senior crew members are referred to as “Officer $lastname”, except in the event that they served in the Space Patrol or the Solar Guard, in which case it is customary to continue to refer to them by their rank within that organization. (EX: Lt. Bernhardt)