Author: Isle of Dreams PM
Summary explanation of Isle of Dream's Halpar, from homeworld description to history up to the Second Galactic War.Rated: Fiction K - English - Sci-Fi - Words: 2,032 - Published: 07-30-07 - id: 2396993
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Halpar / Snairab:
Names:Halpa, Halpar, Halpe (individual member of Halpar species), Halpen (plural members of the Halpar species), Halpan (inanimate object of the Halpa), Snairab (derived from "sacred warrior"; the more contemporary, assertive, usually space-borne Halpar)
Capital:Halpa Prime Sol
Home Planet:Halpa 2 (destroyed)
Military Strength:Major Power, made primarily of Snairab
Military Purpose:Defending Halpan political/economic interests, not really defending territory ever since their home planet was destroyed
Unity:Relatively cohesive, unified by default social/traditional expectation, most rifts are caused by the clash of social archconservative with liberal progressives
Species Type:Endothermic (warm-blooded) reptilian
Telepathy:Receptive, can be linked
Sleep: Must sleep approximately once per Halpan week (12 days, more to stave off neurological damage if separated from their mates)
General Strengths:Military speed and agility (particularly strategic, providing the enemy doesn't make widespread use of hyperspace jamming), some potent technology, efficient agriculture, tactical cunning (especially with the Snairab), natural curiosity
General Weaknesses:Dependency on maintaining delicate chemical balance in the neural system, deep-seated mistrust clashing with their natural curiosity, curiosity, quickness to strike against perceived foreign threats
Home World / Origins:
Halpa 2 was a lush planet dominated by jungles and lacking any significant mountain ranges, despite being highly tectonically active. The crust was laced with huge caves diving sometimes over a kilometer deep and stretching out under the surface for hundreds of kilometers. Powerful storms including destructive swells of water from the scattered oceans ravaged the surface often, and so the Halpen took refuge in the caves.
The Halpar's sense of smell was sufficient to lead them from food source to food source, taste to help them avoid various toxic fungi that commonly grew on organic matter out of the sunlight, their slightly infrared sight and hearing perfect for finding each other and avoiding predators.
Halpa 2 was really the only planet that the Halpen were really attached to, Halpe rarely lived out their lives even on the moon colonies. The loss of their home world was of small strategic military and only moderate economic impact, but scarred the entire race psychologically, and since they don't die of age many who watched their planet disintegrate are still stewing in bitterness over the event.
Closely resembles Terran lizards or salamanders. Light, pebbly skin is usually a brown or gray hue, occasionally reaching into reds, yellows, and greens. Relatively strong, though wounds are easily infected, even a major limb (like an arm or the tail) can regrow within weeks. Despite being endothermic, they have a fairly slow metabolism and in cold conditions will gather together into a state of hibernation much like snakes.
Their light/color vision is poor and most have fairly short-sighted eyes, but they can see in the dark remarkably well and have limited vision into infrared. Their sense of hearing is complex, combining both ear-like sensory organs with bone conductivity through their whole sense of touch, giving them very precise directional-finding ability. Very low base sounds at certain frequencies will easily upset a Halpe's stomach.
Deriving from herbivores, their sense of smell is good for warning them of the approach of a general new object, but not good for specific identification or long-term tracking. Like most species, the Halpar taste is on their long, sticky tongue, which is capable of finely differentiating different plants, fungi, and toxins. Like many reptiles, they can flick out their tongue to sample tastes from the air, aiding their sense of smell.
Their agility is moderate, limited by their comparatively short limbs (compared to species such as Terrans with the ability to jump). Their bodies are fairly physically frail and most have a low pain tolerance, but their cell structure doesn't degrade with age as do other races, so Halpen may die of disease or violence but do not "die of age".
Courtship and Linking:
Courtship is rigidly structured and traditionalized, arising from matchmakers that seek out pairs they determine to be "compatible" instead of the politically/economically-motivated arranged marriages that formed many courtship rituals in Terran culture. The couples spend time exchanging written and audio messages for a period of 8-14 months, depending on the region, Snairab tend to have the shorter 8 month correspondence period while the more traditionalist planet-bound tend to go for longer periods up to 14 months. After this period, the two families begin a series of visits in which both families and the couple spend time together allowing the chemical and telepathic bond to form. The more traditional the family, the more extended the family involved in coming together and the longer this period is, ranging from down to 4 months among the Snairab and up to 10 months among traditionalists, particularly if the two houses argue about how the socio-economic groups are to merge. At the end of this period, the two families come together and celebrate the formal marriage union, culminated by a 16-day celebration (arising from the Halpan hexadecimal number associated with perfection, along with the number 7.)
A linked couple shares a telepathic bond that surpasses space, and the complementary chemicals created by each gender help calm the opposite partner. Unfortunately, this chemical bond opens by the age of 100 and will cause neurological deterioration until death by age of 150 (with medication and relatively stress-free circumstances, up to 180) if the Halpe do not find a mate. This also causes the death of the opposite mate if one dies, though the process in this case is much more rapid, inversely proportional to the time the couple spent together.
Naturally intelligent, curious, and even friendly, Halpen are eager to learn new things and test their knowledge. Their lack of a naturally limited lifespan gives them unlimited time to explore new concepts, but carries with it a propensity to become stuck in one mindset, which eventually lead to a maximum age limit for government leaders and a preference for "open minded" (typically young) Halpen in other leadership positions.
Due to the destruction of their home system by a race they welcomed with open arms, they are highly suspicious of all outsiders, especially those claiming "peace for the sake of peace" motives. For those that the Halpar do not become friends with, Halpar remain suspicious to the point of being annoying, always suspecting a conspiracy against them, and are often superior (more as a defensive mechanism when intimidated). Their distrust of outsiders also leaves them a little too ready to steal technology they believe could be a significant threat against them.
Their xenophobia and distrust lead all Halpen to try to remain enigmatic to outside races, few have ever told of the story of watching their home world shatter. Their curiosity keeps them on the move, though their ability to fabricate a conspiracy out of nothing gives them the cause to be fiercely defensive of any territory they claim as theirs.
Despite all of their distrust, curiosity and a friendly heart remain instinctively born traits, and for the few individuals that manage to break through that thick skin, Halpar make reliable friends as ready to fight for that friend as any brethren Halpe.
As a race, the Halpen are agnostic and slightly superstitious, virtually all believing in some sort of God, though ancient predictions of a prophet bringing spiritual knowledge were long ago buried in the waves of xenophobia after their home planet was destroyed. After the Trintans discovered their agnostic openness in GW2, they have been doggedly attempting to convert the Halpar, but the main race remains suspicious enough that the Republic dares not intrude into Halpar space, instead pestering all fleets outside.
Though the Halpar appreciate nature and at one point they eagerly colonized (mainly to satisfy their curiosity), once their home planet was destroyed they essentially stopped planetary growth, taking to space. They don't mind asteroids as much as other species, and love hiding places like nebulae, but don't like open space and so avoid systems that are too open. Already beginning with a "restless" lifestyle, they became extremely nomadic after the destruction of Halpa 2.
Halpan history is far more peaceful than Terran, interrupted by internal violence primarily in rare but massive social upheavals. Halpan society was careful to let new technology slowly integrate into society before plunging the people into it (avoiding mistakes like the rapid introduction of gunpowder to Terrans). They began space-flight, but their system was comparatively farther from its nearest neighbor than other races (Terrans with Centauri 4 light years away, Trintans with Nomenst 0.9 light years away, Mahash 22 light years from Halpa Sol). This need spurs them to create enduring super-light drive (hyperdrive) faster than other races (year -342).
The invention of hyperdrive begins to create a rift between the space-dwelling and planet-dwelling. Primarily skirmishes but on a few occasions larger battles in orbit off and on for 8-12 years (the first widely acknowledged incident occurring year -288) in their only major civil war, but a few socially powerful families use their influence to bring the planet-dwellers into space and familiarize themselves with the new environment, limiting another upheaval. Their natural curiosity drives them to explore and colonize, though their restless nature keeps the population moving from place to place.
Halpar discover a new race and, obeying their friendly instinct, welcome them. The race betrays them, launching an unprovoked war (year -4). Unprepared for such an unusual war, the numerically and technologically superior Halpar are hard-pressed to fend off the race for the first two years. With Halpa winning, the race uses a spatial-disruption weapon to cause the sun in Halpa Sol to go nova, destroying everything in the system (year 0). The shocked Halpar respond by obliterating the race, even erasing their name from history. The destruction of their home system makes Halpar bitter and forever mistrustful of outsiders.
The naïve Amfoid, poking around through the Milky Way, make first contact with the relatively recently embittered Halpar (year 800 Halpa, 3.20215 Amfa). The Amfoid try to establish peaceful relations with the Halpar, but for all their attempts to prove their peaceful intentions, the Halpar believe it to be a plot to destroy them again, so they use deception and a secret black ops operative posing as a scientist to steal primitive shield technology from the Amfoid (year 802 Halpa, 20216 Amfa), and the Amfoid finally leave, writing off the Halpar as too bitter to be trusted.
Halpar xenophobia solidifies, and their exploration leads them to a wormhole to Bentúsé space (2699 Halpa, 22113 Amfa?? Bentúsé) shortly after the Bentúsé drive away the Amfoid. Snairab scouts report Bentúsé cloaking and high command immediately dispatches black ops to steal the technology. The technology stolen from Amfa and Bentawk is mutually incompatible with each other, but Halpar still find a way to incorporate them into many ships despite not fully understanding the mechanisms.
They build up for years, being probed by the Tumakentol but unable to keep out the elusive, mysterious, space-faring species. Hundreds of years later, the Trintans run into a Snairab fleet and ask the Halpar for help against the Kle'tak (year 11040 Halpa, 12145 Trinta). Thinking that the Kle'tak sound like the race that destroyed their homeland, Halpa gladly joins in the war, though they lose enthusiasm when they realize it's not the same species.
The coalition grows weary of a war without clear purpose, and the Protoforms move in to stop a battle (year ?? Amfa, 11043 Halpa?? Kle'tak?? Trintan), demanding an end to the war. Though all pretended to be "angry at the interference", the races come together and sign a peace treaty. Before more than a few years pass, the Tos-Loven attack a coalition outpost and annihilate it (year ?? Amfa?? Bentawk, 11044 Halpa?? Kle'tak?? Tos-Loven?? Trintan). The Halpar back off and the coalition protests, but it isn't until a sly Amfa negotiator talks to them that they are convinced to re-join the second Galactic War against Tos-Lena (year ?? Amfa, 11046 Halpa).