- 1 Description
- 2 Appearance
- 3 Biology
- 4 Demographics
- 5 Culture
- 6 History
Carleans are a species of intelligent dragonlike reptiles, hailing from Carlea in the Cnara System. They are primarily located in the Florathel Galaxy, and are only just beginning to spread out outside it. Carleans are mostly known for their cooperative, fair and peaceful attitude, which has allowed them to mediate thousands of different treaties. This causes most of the civilizations in the Florathel Galaxy to trust them to mediate fair treaties between enemies, which actually gives them quite a lot of power.
Compared to other species, Carleans are quite smart and resilient, which has led many of them to be scientists. Many species attempted to invade them on the assumption that they would be total pushovers due to their peaceful nature, however they will still defend themselves with astonishing ferocity. However, their attacks are specifically designed to not hit any civilian populations, and because of this, their army actually contains more defectors than native enlisters, as those who attack them are often much more ruthless than they are.
With a history of rapid advancements, they became a K2 civilization, one of the quickest to do so without help. Over many millennia, Carlean subspecies have originated, the descendants of the colonists of strange worlds, genetically engineered to live in their environments without support. As they colonized the Cnara Cluster, they came across the Frealee System, a system with a nascent K1 civilization. They spent a few years decoding their language, started a dialogue, sent a whole bunch of technology plans, and the civilization there rapidly rose to K2. They joined the Cnaran Federation, and their system was actually named the second capital, and the federation was renamed the Cnara-Frealee Federation. This is a prime example of their cooperativeness.
Carleans are blue-gray winged reptilian creatures around fifteen meters long.
Carleans are spread throughout the stars, and as such certain members of their species are adapted to many different environments. The most major among them are described below:
The Skara subspecies is the most common of them, and the closest to their ancestral form in the skies of ancient Carlea. They are considered the "baseline form" of the carlean species.
The Verenn subspecies of the Carleans is found primarily on low-gravity planets, and as such has relatively shorter wings. However, there are some unexpected physiological changes, such as the fact that the gestation period is shorter for no apparent reason.
The Deralka subspecies is found primarily on worlds with relatively thin atmospheres compared to Carlea itself. As such, they have lost the capability of flight, and their wings are vestigial. Deralka have the interesting capability of swallowing incredibly large objects, and they more commonly give birth to 4 or 6 children.
Carleans have a relatively simple respiratory system evolved from their marine ancestors. Air travels in through gill-like structures to the lungs, where oxygen is extracted and carbon dioxide is put back in, then deoxygenated air is blown back out. Carlean lungs, being required to take in enough oxygen to sustain a creature of this size, are quite large and span the length of the neck.
A major benefit of this system is that it never interfaces with the digestive system. This eliminates the risk of choking, though it does cause a few limitations in speech, as the openings cannot be used as efficiently to articulate sounds. This causes some annoyance from other species, but it isn't intolerable.
Because of their huge size, Carleans need to eat a lot. To help facilitate this, Carleans evolved to have this odd-looking extendable jaw that can extend up to several meters from the individual in seconds, grab something out of the sky, and swallow it. The esophagus is also rather stretchy, allowing for rapid conveyance of food to the stomach.
The stomach is a relatively simple affair, simply a really stretchy bag that produces extremely powerful acid to digest food. Interestingly, it has an incredibly high capacity, potentially large enough to swallow another Carlean. This is obviously untested, and historical records show that average stomach capacity seems to be very slowly declining.
After the stomach's contents are fully digested, they are passed through a really long wrapped up tube, the intestine. This absorbs all the nutrients and water in the liquified soup before it's voided.
Being intelligent species, Carleans have rather large brains. Due to the large size of their bodies, Carleans have evolved to have incredibly fast nerve impulses to be able to reach the other end of the body in a reasonable timeframe.
Carleans have six main sensory inputs: vision, scent, taste, hearing, touch, and a thing called "proprioception". The first five work about how one would expect, the only difference being that the Carlean visual spectrum is significantly wider than, say, Humans. Proprioception, the sense of things happening within the body, is much sharper than in most life-forms. For example, a pregnant Carlean could acutely feel everything their unborn children are doing in the womb. No one's entirely sure why this sense evolved to be so sharp.
They reproduce ovoviviparously, which means that the eggs are inside the mother's womb up until a few days after hatching. This means that the eggs do not require hard shells. Carleans almost invariably give birth to twins or quadruplets (the next most common number is 6), with any other number occurring extremely rarely. The Carlean gestation period is approximately 1.5 standard years long, though there is some variation either way.
Carleans are almost solely found in the Florathel Galaxy, especially within the Cnara-Frealee Federation and neighboring states. The only known Carlean habitations outside of the galaxy is the CFF embassy to the Confederacy of Borealis and to the Shev'ra.
Carlean culture has been influenced throughout the millennia by their pacifistic nature and other important properties.
There are many minor religions scattered through Carlean space. However, most Carleans today and throught their history are primarily atheist, as only 14% of the Carlean population follows any religion.