Paranid

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Paranid
Paranid.png
Capital Paranid Prime
Ranks
10 Honour Guard of Xaar
9 Seeker of the Holy Light
8 Emperor's Protectorate
7 Friend of Emperor
6 Priest Protectorate
5 Friend of Priest King
4 Friend of Priest Duke
3 Priest Confidante
2 Friend of Priest
1 Friend
0 Nomad
-1 Unholy Nomad
-2 Tainted Wanderer
-3 Desecrator of Holy Light
-4 Enemy of Priest Duke
-5 Enemy of Priest Xaar
The Paranid are allied with the Split even though there have been many disagreements between them. They are also allied with the Teladi because both races are members of the Profit Guild. For this reason the Paranid allow all other races to trade freely throughout their territory. However, because of strained relations between the Paranid and the Argon, trade is the only contact these two races have with each other. They adhere strictly to their ancient and strange rites and religious beliefs which are a mystery to other races. It is virtually impossible to befriend or even understand them. Their religion also forbids non Paranid to settle or live in a Paranid colony. This law is really of little consequence because very few outsiders are interested in settling in Paranid colonies. This is due to the fact that the Paranid prefer to settle on planets that are much too hot and humid for other races.
—Encyclopedia description, X³: Albion Prelude

The Paranid are a three-eyed and very religious race.

Contents

History

Alongside the Argon, the Paranid are one of the oldest races in the X Universe. Their home planet is situated near to a white star, which means that their natural environment is hot and very arid. Great deserts and mountain ranges straddle the planet. The Paranid themselves evolved from a large species of ancient desert beetles, some of which still scuttle around the desert planet.

The earliest ancestors of the Paranid lived in deep, cool caves hollowed out of the mountain sides, and held strange religious beliefs that involved complicated mystical rites and ceremonies, all based on mathematics and geometry. The number Three is playing a paramount role in Paranid mathematics and mythology. As the race developed, they hollowed deeper and deeper into the mountains, until they had built themselves large complex underground colonies.

Over the years the Paranid, in conjunction with their mystical and mathematical beliefs, developed their own brand of technology, and by the year 50 had made their first ventures into space.

They began to colonize other hot planets in their own solar system and soon built up a large number of colonies. In 130 they made contact with the Argon race. From their first meeting the Argon were always deeply suspicious of the Paranid, and never understood their strange religious rituals and rites. In turn the Paranids could never really understand the culture of the Argons hence relationships between the two races were never friendly, however for many years, the two races managed to trade and tolerate each other.

When the Argons were attacked by the Xenon they turned to the Paranid for help, but after 25 years of deliberation the Pontifex Maximus Paranidia (Emperor of Paranid) refused to join in the conflict. What the Argon never realised was that the Paranid were in an awkward position. Some years before, in 200, they had come into contact with the Split with whom they had fought a short but costly war. Eventually the two sides agreed to a cease fire which led to the formation of trade agreements and military alliances. It was these alliances that prevented the Paranid from coming to the assistance of the Argon in 250, and also tied the Paranid to assisting the Split fight their war against the Kingdom of Boron in 299.

After their victory in the Xenon conflict in 255 the Argon were very bitter towards the Paranid and relationships between the two races sank to an all time low and, as soon as the Argon realised that the Paranid were fighting the Boron, they joined in the conflict. The entrance of the Argon in the Boron Campaign turned the tide and the Split Paranid alliance began to retreat.

Their eventual defeat in the Boron Campaign proved very costly to the Paranid, and for many years they retreated back into their own territories and rebuilt their depleted space fleet. When the Argon and the Boron formed the Foundation Guild the Paranid once again allied themselves to the Split and, in the year 413, the two races officially formed the ”Profit Guild”.

This alliance led to further threats of war some years later when the Split declared war on the Xenon. After a few initial skirmishes the Paranid refused to enter into any further conflict. For them this war, being fought at the opposite side of the Community of Planets, had no trading or territorial advantages and seemed pointless. They also recognized the fact that the Xenon were a very powerful race, having witnessed their long, drawn out and costly war between them and the Argon many years earlier. Once again the Paranid decided that, as neither side held an advantage, war was not for them. The Split wanted to continue the action and the two races argued. The Paranid then threatened to withdraw from the Profit Foundation unless the war ended. Faced by the dissolution of their trading partnership and therefore destruction of their economy the Split had no option but to declare peace with the Xenon.

This situation put a great strain on relations between the two races and for many years they were deeply suspicious of each other. The admission of the Teladi into the Profit Guild, in 563, helped to reduce this tension but, in 589, the initial refusal of the Split to join the Big Currency Reform once again strained the relationship. Once again, by threatening to withdraw for The profit Guild, the Paranid persuaded the Split to agree with the currency reform on re-negotiated terms.

The Paranid today

Despite their many historic disagreements The Paranid are still allied to the Split and, through their membership of the Profit Guild, the Teladi. In addition to being members of the Profit Guild the Paranid allow all other races to trade openly throughout their sectors of space, however relations between the Paranid and the Argon are still very strained, and trade is the only contact the two races have with each other.

Even to this day their strange rites and religious beliefs are a mystery to other races and it is virtually impossible to befriend or even understand them – except if you happen to have three eyes… These rites also forbid any member of another race settling or living on a Paranid colony, not that many ever want to due to the fact that the Paranid prefer to settle on planets that are too hot for other races.

The Paranid race

The Paranid are odd, and fierce looking. Their thick leathery skin is yellow and they have three large bony crests on the tops of their heads. They also have three eyes set in a deep furrow across their foreheads. Their mouth is similar to that of a fish with two fangs emerging from the either side. They also have a series of bone spines that grow from the backs of their heads and appear like twin tusks at the sides of their eyes and mouth. Their bodies stand very tall, taller than any human. They are also very slim and bony, short of having an exoskeleton. Their appearance has reminiscences of insects, but on the other hand, they're clearly no insects at all. Their arms have multiple joints, as well as their claws. Their legs are also multiply jointed and their feet are more like very broad hoofs that give the Paranid a very good grip on the ground. They are very strong, and they will win a personal fight against anybody. Their preferred method of killing manually is wrapping their long, multiply jointed arms around their victim, crushing it to death. Nobody in the Community of Planets would pick a bare-handed fight with a Paranid. Paranids do not have different genders, and not much is known about how they multiply at all. It is assumed that this is directly connected to the Pontifex Maximus Paranidia in some way.

Paranid behavior always tends to trying not to lose their face no matter in what situation. They always exaggerate their appearance, which sometimes borders on being ridiculous. This kind of behavior is meant to impress other Paranids, which works. It does not, however, work on members of other races.

Paranids regard every life-form that does not have 3 eyes or a multiple of 3 eyes as "unholy”.

They are ruled by a strict hierarchical regime in which the entire race is controlled by the Pontifex Maximus Paranidia (a Priest Emperor) based on the home planet, whilst a lesser Priest King rules each different sector of space. A Priest Duke rules each Paranid space station. The current Pontifex Priest Emperor is called Xaar; he is also the topmost authority in all mathematical and religious questions. One of the most remembered Pontifex' of the past is Bashra, who is quoted with those noteworthy lines, regarded as a basic axiom of "being Paranid”:

"Only he who has three eyes can fully grasp three-dimensionality. Only he who fully grasps three-dimensionality can be holy." Paranid Bashra, 1st and 2nd Axiom

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