Spinarran

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Codex

Metallic arachnid creatures whose genders come in two different styles of terrifyingly intriguing.

Driders

Amazonian, eight-legged behemoths.

Name: Drider (Singular), Driders (Plural)

Sexes: Female

Height: Average 8’ to 9’ tall.

Weight: Between 500 and 700 pounds.

Hair: Finger-thick chitinous locks, vaguely resembling human dreadlocks at a glance.

Skin: Head-to-toe metallic chitin. Various patterns and colorations are possible depending on diet, region, and parentage.

Ears: Appear at a glance as metallic flanges on the side of the head, complemented by a pair of insectile antennae on the brow.

Eyes: Three vertically arranged pairs, each larger than the one above. Coloration is typically red, blue, green, or gold. Pupils are vertically slit against a solid background with no visible definition between sclera and iris.

Body Type: Humanoid upper body with a spider-like lower half. Two arms, eight arachnid-style legs, and a large abdomen. Forelegs display a notable increase in size and strength over the remaining limbs.

Arachne

Amazonian, eight-legged behemoths.

Name: Drider (Singular), Driders (Plural)

Sexes: Female

Height: Average 8’ to 9’ tall.

Weight: Between 500 and 700 pounds.

Hair: Finger-thick chitinous locks, vaguely resembling human dreadlocks at a glance.

Skin: Head-to-toe metallic chitin. Various patterns and colorations are possible depending on diet, region, and parentage.

Ears: Appear at a glance as metallic flanges on the side of the head, complemented by a pair of insectile antennae on the brow.


Eyes: Three vertically arranged pairs, each larger than the one above. Coloration is typically red, blue, green, or gold. Pupils are vertically slit against a solid background with no visible definition between sclera and iris.

Body Type: Typical humanoid, excepting for a second set of arms below the first. Both secondary arms are tipped with diamond-hard chitinous growths in place of hands.

Appearance

Spinarrans are an insectoid species resembling arthropods. Males are a little taller than humans on average, while females are significantly taller. Metallic chitin girds their impressive height from their feet all the way to the crowns of their heads with few exceptions. Eyes, mouths, anuses, and genitals are the most visible weak points in their impressive biological defenses. Striking one is not recommended. Attempting to strike such a creature in such a small place is even more inadvisable.

Like arthropods, the females are much larger and stronger than the males, resulting in the atypical behavior of males carrying and birthing offspring. These males, known as Arachne, are humanoid in shape, with two legs and four arms. The females of the species, commonly referred to as Driders, are several feet taller and monstrous in shape, with a humanoid upper body like an Arachne, two arms and a head. The female’s lower body however, is like that of a giant spider, with eight long legs and an large arachnid like abdomen.

Biology

Spinarrans originated from a large, rocky world called Spinarra in the Chelicera system of the milky way galaxy. This world, while larger than most Terra class worlds, is lighter, mostly due to the lower levels of heavy metals such as gold, iron, uranium and so on. However, their world contains abundant titanium, platinum, nickel, and palladium. Spinarra is a planet whose crust is riddled with tunnels and deep caverns made not by nature itself, but by the planets native species that live and thrive under the surface, the Spinarrans and the native rock worms.

While the Spinarran diet is technically omnivorous, they are primarily lithophagous, eating raw rock and metal. The minerals they eat are broken down by specialized chemicals secreted by glands in their mouth. These chemicals can be manually ejected by spinarrans as a defense or mining mechanism, but most of the time remain safely stored away from their oral cavity. This adaption is considered quite useful by interspecies couples.

Advisory: Have caution when kissing a spinarran. It is ill advised to kiss soon after eating as mineral compromising chemicals may still be present within the mouth.

It is this unique diet that makes Spinarran’s a such a valued species. Spinarrans dig deep underground and eat the rocks and ore they dig up. Some of these minerals are used to make their remarkably hard metallic chitin and their carbon filament silk. The excess metal is expelled as waste in the form of concentrated metal spheres of astounding purity. When spinarran’s gorge themselves on metallic ore, it can force them to go through rapid molting, shedding their carapace to make a new one from the ore they are consuming. Over eating too causes them to repeatedly molt their refined chitin, which then can be melted down and be used. Their services as miners and prospectors are in high demand as all they have to do is be brought in and directed to ore veins; the Spinarrans will dig and eat to their heart’s content, making purified metal as they go.

Their sense of taste, sight, and smell are specially attuned to detect trace amounts of metal ore, helping them find rich sources of food. The metal, as well as their old discarded carapace, are valued trade goods that are sold into the galactic market for all manner of high end manufacturing.

Their silk is another valuable material; spun from the drider’s abdomen much like the way Terran arthropods make webs. Unlike other species of silk spinners, Spinarran webs are a flexible alloyed filament of carbon and titanium along with several other materials. A braided cable of Spinarran silk is nearly unbreakable, construction laced with it more durable, ballistic armor made from it resists heat from thermal weapons and is for the most part, bulletproof. Spinarran silk has the fascinating attribute of being able to conduct electricity well, even at standard room temperature. This gives it applications for power relay cables or in more general electronics.

Society

Currently, the spinarrans have been adapting to the presence of the UGC and greater galaxy for the last one hundred and ninety years. Being a subterranean species, they are not particularly comfortable with space travel. Some spinarrans suffer acute agoraphobia if they look out a window into space. Their technology lags behind galactic norms in most areas; spinarran spaceships in particular make easy prey for pirates. In contrast, spinarran geothermal generators are well-known for their efficiency and reliability, making them popular choices for geologically active worlds. Similarly, spinarran industry has adapted technological innovations from the rest of the galaxy to refine their mining equipment.

Spinarrans are led by a unique individual: a special drider a foot or so larger than other driders. This empress can vary with appearance, mostly due to different metals in her chitin. Every empress has flecks or veins of gold in their carapace and a large crest of chitin atop their head. Her body also forms crystalline jewels at her ears, crest and along her lower body. The small, blue, luminous, teardrop shaped crystals help show the empress’s stature among her people. The empress is leaner than other driders, more speedy and sinuous. The Spinarran empress is an exceptionally intelligent and wise ruler as she inherits all the memories of the preceding empress and so on, so long as the chain of descendants is unbroken. Every empress lays only a single, glittering gold flecked egg in their lifetime, and the act is fatal to the drider, passing on her memories and her silk robes, to her offspring before dying shortly after. In ages past, this meant that the empress was to be celibate for her entire life before laying her egg near the end of her lifespan. Now there are drugs that can prevent a drider from laying her eggs, but even so, the empress often maintains the tradition of celibacy.

The empress’s mate and egg are cared for as if they were the empress themselves, waited on hand and foot by servants, making sure their every need is taken care of. Once the egg is hatched, the newborn empress is carefully tended to and raised until she is ready to lead, usually by her 9th year though in some cases she has taken up her rulership as early as her 8th year or as late as her 18th. It has been told that if the empress were to be killed, another spinarran will become an empress, either by going through physical and mental changes to become the empress. At times, a drider may get extreme cravings for gold a week or so before she lays the gold flecked empress egg. In this case, the slate is wiped clean. The new empress is born without her predecessors’ memories. The current Spinarran empress is Empress Yalla Araemika Elerra the XVII.

Reproduction

Driders (females) have ovipositors located on the underside of their spider body. These organs are quite large by terran standards - easily 16 to 20 inches long and 3 inches across. A small lump of flesh near the base is capable of engorgement upon climax, much like an ausar knot, in order to safely transfer eggs into the recipient. The tip is bulbous, with three grooves along the head. Upon climax, it opens to latch onto the cervix of a partner arachne’s womb.

By contrast, their secondary sexual characteristics are much smaller - B to C cup breasts at most. As there is no need for lactation, there seems to be little reason for their existence save for ornamentation.

Spinarran eggs are squishy, silvery, and gel-like in texture. Their surface is surprisingly durable and difficult to rupture. Additionally, drider eggs are much larger than their arachne kin - at least twice their size on average. When no eggs are ready for laying, the ovipositor merely releases a metallic, glue-like gel. Normally this would help to bind the eggs in place and provide additional nutrition.

Arachne (males) also have ornamental breasts, though theirs are slightly larger (C-D cups). They also have wide hips to accommodate pregnancy. More interestingly, they have a feminine-appearing vagina and womb-like cavity. The entrance is smooth and glossy, puffing up when aroused. It is quite stretchy and pliant, to deal with the largeness of drider ovipositors.

Upon successful mating, arachne immediately appear several months pregnant, making it quite easy to identify when a mating has occurred.

Driders and arachne are usually monogamous, though not always the case. Traditionally, driders will court an arachne for some time, then try and capture their prospective mate in webs. The arachne will fight and run to make sure the drider is strong and capable. Once captured, the drider then bites the arachne, injecting them with addictive, narcotic venom. However these traditions are not practiced so much in modern times. In smaller communities, the hunt is still practiced. In larger communities (and offworld settlements), spinarrans use different means to “hunt” their mates. These alternative methods include: dom-sub roleplay, collars, leashes, web bondage and envenoming. Traditionally, it is the female that courts the males, females being the larger eight legged members of the species. However since being discovered by the UGC some males have taken to courting their female counterparts in the style of more patriarchal species.

The venom puts the Arachne into a state of blissful euphoria and keeps them from fighting back while arousing them at the same time. Once the Arachne has submitted to its mate, the drider then mounts their Arachne, mating until they climax. Driders typically lay between 6 to 10 eggs each reproductive cycle, with each batch of eggs only having 3 to 4 viable eggs. Extra eggs are absorbed as nutrients by the fertilized ones. Once the eggs are deposited, the drider begins mating their Arachne again. Driders will keep their lover bound and drugged for hours at a time, fucking them repeatedly. With each mating, the drider’s orgasms will fill the arachne’s womb with a thick jelly-like substance, packing its womb full of this gel. This filling serves two purposes: first, so the eggs can feed on its biomass as extra nutrition; second, to seal the womb shut and keep the eggs inside.

When the eggs are inside the arachne, they secrete hormones that cause the release of sperm from the carrier’s womb to fertilize the eggs. Afterwards, the newly impregnated arachne follows its drider mate, the pair staying together as long as they are both alive. The drider keeps its chosen mate for pleasure, continued reproduction, companionship, and shared protection. The arachne stays to keeps its source of narcotic venom, pleasure, reproduction, companionship, and the protection of their bigger, stronger drider mate.

Spinarran eggs gestate for 5-6 months inside their host before being birthed. In the week before birthing, the remaining gel within the womb changes composition, adhering to the eggs and gaining a kind of aphrodisiac, simulating pleasure centers as they are passed through the vagina. It is not terribly uncommon for arachne ‘mothers’ to come to orgasm at least once by the time birthing is complete. These eggs are then cared for until they hatch, a process which can take anywhere from 3 to 7 days. The newly hatched offspring are then cared for and raised by their parents.

Young spinarrans are born with fully functioning teeth and mineral dissolving glands. Parents often chip and break small rocks into tiny pieces for their young to eat. Mature spinarrans who have recently given birth can be re-impregnated within two weeks and particularly amorous or productive pairs get started with another clutch within days of birthing eggs.

Most Spinarran offspring reach maturity within 12-15 years.

Culture

Spinarrans are a species that highly favors large groups. Their culture is very communal, and this is reflected in the way they govern themselves. On a small scale, individual broods come to a consensus on issues internal and external. On a large scale, Spinarrans are led by their empress, and she is aided by a senate of elected officials from every state in the Spinarran empire.

Large broods are commonplace, typically between 40 and 60 members per family. Driders that come of breeding age normally are pushed out of their brood for a year or two to meet other broods. Successful meetings help to bond different broods tighter for mutual defence and resource sharing. For most Spinarrans, mated pairs are a single drider picking an Arachne they really like and taking them as a mate. It’s is not very common for driders to pair together or for arachne to pair together. While most broods lean towards monogamy some broods do lean more towards maintaining relationships with multiple partners. On some occasions, a drider will take multiple males as a harem. The culture promotes good companionship between mated pairs and the addictive nature of the driders narcotic venom makes couples much harder to break apart. In times past, the death of a mated drider almost certainly meant the death of the drider’s mate, with the withdrawal from their addiction to the drider’s venom giving them a slow, aching death. These days, synthetic venom can be used to wean a grieving Arachne off their drider’s venom until they are ready to find another mate. Some family members could even donate their own venom to their grieving sibling, parent or offspring, though this can result in awkward situations or acts of incest due to the euphoric nature of the venom.

Spinarrans are a subterranean species, normally sticking to the underground tunnels and caverns that riddle the crust of their planet. Some more adventurous or eccentric individuals form communities on the surface. Surface ventures are not easy for Spinarrans. Being creatures of the underground, their eyes are well adapted to low light and darkness. Surface light is harsh on spinarran eyes, and without protection, sunlight is near blinding to them. All spinarrans going onto the surface of their world or even into the light of foreign space stations wear goggles or fully enclosed helmets to protect their eyes from the harsh surface light.

Due to limited advances in some areas of technology and underground communities, the Spinarrans never put much thought toward long ranged weaponry like artillery or long ranged rifles. Instead, the tight confines and close quarters of tunnels and caverns made them more comfortable and suited with close ranged and melee combat. In older times, plate armor, swords, shields, spears were commonplace. In more modern times mono-molecular blades, thermal axes, electrical bludgeons, and energy shields are very common. Spears gave way to firearms briefly before being pushed aside for thermal weapons. Lasers and plasma are much more friendly to their caves then explosives and bullets, and today there is a total embargo on concussive and explosive weapons for all spinarran settlements.

In modern times, spinarrans work together in combat. Arachne commonly ride driders into combat as heavily armored mounts, carrying heavy armor, laser weapons, and mono-molecular sabers. Some particularly strong driders are decked out in enough armor to serve as biological tanks - complete with abdomen-mounted canons.

Prior to being discovered by the UGC late in the last planet rush, Spinarran life spans ranged from 60-70 years of age. Access to more advanced medicine this lifespan shot to an average of 150 years of age. With the comparatively fast pace of spinarran reproduction, this new lifespan has led to some overcrowding on Spinarra, prompting Spinarra to encourage whole broods to seek out colonies on other planets.

Naturally, spinarran gene mods were inevitable. Some such mods can give the full body chitinous exoskeleton, others can give the eyes, genitals, and even the driders’ narcotic venom fangs. Off-worlders taking arachne lovers are sometimes encouraged by more traditional lovers to get a set of venom fangs so they can devote themselves to their mate completely.

There is yet some concern for spinarrans as unlawful harvesting of their natural venom in drug use could cause them to be a target for slavery or other criminal activities.



Characters

Kirila