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Science-Fiction Adventure in the Far Future
Intelligent minor race native to Marhaban (Lentuli / Empty Quarter 0426, UPP:A-4697AB-E 801 Im K8 IV).
Known as Bwaps or Wabs (from their name for themselves, Bawapakerwa-a-a- awapawab), they are also known as Newts due to their appearance. Physiology Bwaps average 1.4 m in height and mass between 30 and 50 kg. They are upright, bipedal, homeothermic and bisexual, with an internal skeleton and a closed circulatory system. Their hemoglobin is copper-based, a deep blue in colour, making their skin a faint greenish-blue in areas without pigmentation.
Body markings vary tremendously from clan ("tree") to clan, each one having a distinctive pattern. The pattern is determined by genetic factors and the colour is determined by careful manipulation of the mother's diet during the formation of the egg. Greens, browns, yellows and blues are most common, usually in patterns of darker colours over a lighter basic colour.
Bwaps are uncomfortable in less than 98% humidity, as their skin must be kept moist. With special clothing, they can exist indefinitely in humidities as low as 25%, provided they have adequate water. This normally consists of a loosely fitting kaftan-like garment and a hood covering the head (giving rise to another nickname, "towel-heads"). The cloth of these garments is permeated with a network of fine tubes, through which water flows and keeps the cloth moist. In occupations where they must handle paper or other items which would suffer from moisture, Bwaps wear thin water-proof gloves. In humidities of less than 25%, they must use sealed environment suits. All clothing is coloured with a stylised representation of their body, since recognition of body pattern is an important part of their greeting ritual.
Bwaps are oviparous, each female incubating a single, non-amniotic egg in a special pouch on her lower abdomen. After hatching, the young remain in this pouch for several weeks, occasionally coming out to be fed, until they are strong enough to survive outside. The young reach maturity after 14 years. History Prior to obtaining civilisation, proto-Bwaps lived in densely wooded, mangrove-like swamps.
They burrowed under and among the root-systems of large trees, forming dens for the communal protection of their young. Their culture and ritual interactions began at this time.
A shift in weather patterns caused the marshy areas to shrink, forcing them into increased competition with other animals in the region. The discovery of tools and then agriculture permitted the Bwaps to gain a tremendous advantage over their competition, and put them on the road to civilisation.
The Bwaps did not discover fire until late, due to their environment, which hindered development of metal-working and similar pursuits. When discovered by the Vilani, the Bwaps had reached TL 7 and stabilised. The introduction of advanced technologies such as jump drive had no major effect on their culture, and the Bwaps have prospered greatly in the intervening centuries.
Bwaps can be found throughout the Imperium, more commonly in the region trailing and coreward of Capital (Core / Core 2118).
Fewer than 12 Imperial worlds are fully controlled by Bwaps; most of these are classed as religious dictatorships. Bwap merchants and administrators can be found throughout known space, but are less common outside the Imperium.