Cynos Union Databank





Overview: The yowason, one of the original six founders species of the Cynos Union and native to the planet Verij, are a walking lesson in the fact that stereotypes don’t work. As a ‘vampiric’ race of alien squids, the stereotype dictates that the yowason should, by all rights, be broody, unpleasant predators, but this couldn’t be farther from the truth.

It’s well-known that the nickname for the yowason, around the entire Cynos, is ‘lolsquids’, a nickname that came about after the yowason made first contact with humanity during the Abyssal War, found the human invention known as the internet and went searching for the history of humanity in entirely the wrong places. From thence, that iconic nickname was born. They also make the strongest alcohol in the Cynos, the fabled and lethal Vindabeer.

Everyone loves the lolsquids. No exceptions.

Evolution & Biology: The yowason are the only member species of the Cynos to live a semi-airborne lifestyle, floating through the air on the translucent glide bladders that line each side of each yowason’s upper thorax. They evolved along the peripheries of the great canyons that cover Verij’s surface, making their home along cliff faces as some seabirds do on Earth. There, however, the comparison to Earth seabirds ends, as there are very few (read: zero) avian species on humanity’s homeworld that can claim to be five-limbed vampire squids.

The yowason evolved to drop on their prey from high angles, envelope them in their five tentacles, and quickly deploy feeder siphons mounted on facial tentacles, to feed on the prey animal’s bodily fluids (blood is a common food, of course, but spinal fluid is a particular delicacy). As such, yowason have no mouths, and communicate through modulation of the airflow through spiracles on the underside of their teardrop-shaped, aerodynamic heads. Similar to cephalopods on Earth, the yowason are also able to change the colour of their skin (the upper layers their skin also display iridescent qualities which originally evolved for use in courtship dances), and although this plays a small role in communication, they seem to communicate primarily through ‘spiracle hoots’.

The yowason also have a more distributed nervous system than is seen on other vertebrate creatures, and with an ability to regenerate tissue like a starfish, this makes the yowason very hard to kill.

This species is also quasi-hermaphroditic. The yowason have a firmly delineated male/female life cycle, with an individual yowason switching genders roughly every eight months. When a pair of yowason bonds, it is extremely common for their male/female cycles to synchronise. This ‘gender swap’ life cycle is not disrupted by childbirth, as the yowason are also egg layers.

History & Culture: The mentality of the yowason has often been described as “carefree”, “hippies” and “mental”, with one famous description of them being as “fun-loving, five-limbed, gliding, vampire-surfer-squid-beasts”. This unique psychology came about as a result of their evolution; with the distributed nervous system and regenerative ability, on a homeworld which paradoxically has a lower gravity than Earth with a higher atmospheric pressure, the yowason suffer very little lasting damage from long falls off the cliffs. The more wild and reckless individuals flourished, leading to a civilisation that sometimes seems to be made up purely of inveterate thrill-seekers, who generally decide that their best course of action is whatever’s funniest at the time.

Their culture is based around the vertiginous existence that has always been part of their lives, and yowason cities are, to this day, built vertically on the cliff faces upon which they evolved. However, as a by-product of their semi-airborne life, the yowason also never got round to inventing elevators or stairs; instead, they use ‘glide tubes’, tubes with rising columns of heated air upon which the yowason glide to their destination.

There is one curious quirk of their culture, which only arose after experiencing human culture for the first time; while they have iridescent, shimmering skin, they really hate it when people say they sparkle.

Seriously. It drives them mental.

Nosfers: The yowason seem to be a naturally carefree civilisation. As such, they have very few societal rules beyond doing what’s right by their fellow sentients.

There is, however, one hard and fast rule which the yowason must never break.

While non-sentient life is fair game for their almost vampiric feeding methods, they must never, ever feed on other sentient lifeforms.

To do so is to become ‘nosfer’, and to become nosfer is grounds for instant, summary execution. This is perhaps the only thing the yowason take entirely seriously, and when a nosfer is found, they consider sending a heavy cruiser, to destroy the everything within a three mile radius of the nosfer using heavy-gauge particle cannons, to be a conservative way of dealing with the problem.

It is perhaps unusual that such a carefree civilisation takes such a hard-line approach to dealing with a nosfer, but it is perhaps simply a case of nosferism being the ultimate unforgivable crime to these otherwise gentle and friendly beings, although some misinformed people believe this points to something darker within the yowason psyche.

Conspiracy theories have appeared on the lat, about underground yowason adult clubs, where bloodletting and nosferism are said to run rampant. However, official yowason reports have found no evidence that such clubs exist.

Relations with the n'kaf: The Cynos Union is an effort, in part, to promote peace and understanding between its member species, but there are always little anomalies around which the constitution has to work, and the constant, low-level animosity between the yowason and the n’kaf is one of them. It’s a unique relationship between the two species, one which began when the n’kaf, already on diplomatic terms with the vossarulls, made first contact with the yowason. Thus, the two species tend to avoid each other wherever possible. It saves argument, and despite what people may think, has nothing to do with the yowason thinking that the n’kaf are insufferable, anal-retentive bores, or the n’kaf believing that the yowason are annoying, hippy idiots.

It is, in fact, a relationship based on their unique biologies; in simple terms, the n’kaf ‘see’, and talk, using high-pitched sounds and active sonar, in a frequency range that is an extreme irritant to yowason skin, at best sending their colour-changing ability into a state often known as ‘wibbly’, and at worst causing genuine pain to the yowason. Of course, with the yowason being the yowason, some of them actually quite like it, and thus, go seeking out the n’kaf at every possible opportunity.

There’s also an inordinate amount of adult material involving the yowason and these activities with the n’kaf (amongst others), on the galactic communications lattice (the ‘lat’, a modern equivalent of the old human internet), but people prefer not to talk about it.