BYOND Key: Haydizzle
Character Names: Porter de-Abaros, Raphael Deluca, and for those of you lucky enough to see him the one time I played him, Kanoa Kal’tari.
Species you are applying to play: Unathi.
What color do you plan on making your first alien character: A ruddy red/brown, like more oxidized rust (159, 38, 17; alternatively, #9f2611).
Have you read our lore section's page on this species?: Yep!
Please provide well articulated answers to the following questions in a paragraph format. One paragraph minimum per question.
Why do you wish to play this specific race:
Oh boy! Well, there were a few initial reasons I have, namely peer pressure by friends good impressions I received with various characters, my desire to try an “out of body” roleplay by playing as another species, or even thinking that the way they perceive other cultures as being amusing are all touch-point topics that lured me in.
After reading the lore though, I got to see a lot more depth that fascinated me. I took a lot of time mulling over which species I wanted to apply for a whitelist first for, but there are different aspects of unathi culture and design that gave me exceptional character ideas. The strikingly similar parallels between their history and our own (feudalism, inherent belief of women being inferior, and perhaps nationalist-like pride for one’s own clan) in tandem with surprisingly progressive values in some sects (not quite shunning homophobia if a clan’s lineage can be preserved elsewhere, the idea of a soul being given a body of the wrong sex) create paradoxical and even oxymoron-like structures that both bare quandaries and also create a familiar and relatable feeling. I enjoy how the honor code is implemented here, as it is an uncommon racial trope that I don’t see well executed, but felt was done nicely. I think the final capstone were the religious beliefs and erudition of the Th’akh I found especially drawn towards (I’m a sucker for theologists who double as scholars).
I ultimately believe I chose sinta’unathi specifically since there were a lot of character concepts that I felt would be well orchestrated in this species that I couldn’t normally execute comfortably without coming off as wildly unorthodox or even off the handle.
Identify what makes role-playing this species different than role-playing a Human:
Quite a question! There are numerous initial things I’m so tempted to fire off, but can really apply to other species as well. In roleplay, I’d pretty much avoid physical contact with other characters at first, and most of the cues make them out as having more reptilian responses (a real shocker) when signalling emotion, unlike how humans show it on their face. There is a very clear, underlined, bold, and italicized focus on honor in unathi society, so I would imagine too that respecting anybody of a higher position, older age, or even of a more well learned or experienced background is a staple for nearly any character. More ‘mechanically,’ I don’t think they can take to wearing most kinds of shoes or gloves, and they find themselves more inundated with heat while resistant to the cold moderately. On a more figurative level, there is a type of generational trauma for unathi where, similar to tajarans, they suffered painful losses from the Contact War, a conflict that perhaps only entrenched resentments for different clans and powers.
Character Name: Buhersiz As’zalth
Please provide a short backstory for this character.
As’zalth doesn’t remember his parents. He remembers only vague details; a warm, red face of a silky feminine unathi, and another person with frilled brown scales paired to a grave tone. The voices, as he understands it, were probably his parents; As’zalth isn’t sure. They come and go to him in small waves, faint mutterings that are so infuriating close to being intelligible that they sometimes drove him into a frenzy, especially when the unathi was busy salvaging. He would go from wreckage to wreckage while hitching a ride where he could, but usually ruffing it with only his gear and his determination to leave. His full name too is one prescribed to himself based on the collar of a shirt he found, belonging to a corpse of a unathi about the same size as As’zalth. His memory loss was often a point of fascination, curiosity, sadness, and anger, depending on his swinging mood.
This rust colored sinta lived in a small settlement near Camp Integrity, named Otkulh’s Rest. Here is where he made his living; selling scrap where he could, or using it to help repair simple things for the few denizens of the town, for a price, of course. With so much free time, a small fascination with tinkering led him to experiment with engineering and design, though how far he got was limited by what he knew. The things As’zalth did and learned surely impressed the other unathi as most of them led simple lives that tried to rough it in the Wastes.
As As’zalth made his rounds outside the town, the mirages of the Wastes always played tricks on his mind, too, for better or worse. Though, the debris of the ongoing war was a gold rush of material waiting to be harvested, and it often turned into the day’s next ingenious project. A metal parasol, a barbed stick plated with iron tacks, or perhaps an upgrade for his meager cart, lovingly referred to in every incarnation as ‘Rustboy’s Jealousy.’ As’zalth sometimes saw the voices with images dancing faintly in the distance as they danced in subtle swaying gestures. The sinta’unathi’s projects often rejected the voices to the distant horizon, where this orphan took his mind off his circumstances by imagining what humans and skrell were up to in the distant galaxy.
He did not hear about these tidings, this news, from just any settlement. Particular caravans of the Th’akh temple shamans, sent between town and temple to help care for those struck by the horrors of war, would cross paths with As’zalth often, many of which seemed more than pure happenstance. The acolytes would often let As’zalth sit with them as he journeyed himself for more rubble to salvage. And they spoke often, spoke honeyed words of new things that have never been recorded in their libraries or spoken by their shamans; towns that floated in the sky; scaleless and tailless fleshies, and amphibians with soft horns; and, most importantly, ships that sailed across the stars. As hellfire left the landscape scarred, As’zalth often felt a rejection for his home, wishing to travel and see what space had to offer him. Until that day came, however, the small unathi would happily content himself to the knowledge these monks had under their own care.
Eventually, as he developed into his older years, as the war decimated into a conflict of the past, As’zalth found himself unsatisfied with the passing stories of the Th’akh shamans. By offering to help out different people around the Wasteland, the orphan managed to carry some exchange and money to purchase food for the nearest Akhanzi temple. But as the calendar days passed, he grew more wary of his amnesia, and it saddened him more. Not knowing his lineage, his clan… for other unathi, it was a point of pride and honor, but for him? He didn’t know where he belonged, yet he knew what he longed for.
As’zalth eventually found himself enamored by the stories and lessons of one T’skal Akhanzi, a shaman who was in their sixties, or so As’zalth guessed. He obsessed over the era before the Contact War, wondering which faction, which place, where his parents belonged. Akhanzi took to great lengths to cater to As’zalth’s curiosity in a bid to tide him over to join the temple; he answered all of the unathi’s questions in depth and directed the child to sources of information that would better help him with his curiosity to build. The sinta was too rowdy, too eager, though--accordingly, the other temple shamans resented him for his bold and brash nature. As’zalth picked up on this, preferring to stay quiet around most of these shamans and do his best to heed their words and, at Akhanzi's behest, make an attempt at staying out of trouble. With time in the temple, he began to pick up on Th’akh and its religious mandates. He couldn’t help but wonder, however, if that meant he really heard his parents’ voices before, and if joining the shamans would help him gain new understanding on it.
As he was starting to warm up to the Wasteland shamans, tragedy struck. As’zalth made his way towards the temple grounds only to see smoke on the distant horizon. After making his way over, the unathi saw the burning temple with no trace of anyone outside. The inquisition burned and razed the temple and, as he tried to work past his tears at the sight of this tragedy, As’zalth left for the capital, inevitably finding recruitment with NanoTransen to start his delayed journey towards the stars.
What do you like about this character?
This wasn’t the first idea I spawned for this application, but it’s definitely the one I feel is the most interesting and makes the best use of elements of the culture, lore, and setting with a twist. I first considered making a cowardly unathi, or perhaps one that wasn’t competent enough to be a fighter; something he clearly struggled with that other unathi would pick up on. However, the idea of somebody who dislikes the system, due to his envy of what he doesn’t have, will make As’zalth a better character. He strives to be honorable, but he doesn’t know why, and wants to figure himself out; a bit of discovery, if you may. I wanted to make a character who felt displaced by those around him without inherently using discrimination to meet that end, and I look forward to polishing this idea and adding more detailed backstory along as I go!
How would you rate your role-playing ability?
It’s fairly tempered with my skill of roleplaying by now, having done roleplay for about 7 or 8 years. I’m still rather green to Aurora, though, and I still feel as though I have a lot to learn to become a seasoned and well enjoyed roleplayer overall.
Notes: If you read all of what I posted, bless your soul, and thanks for taking the time to read it!