Highly intelligent, highly adaptable, inquisitive, social
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Prior to the rise of the Dominion, and the subsequent appearance of the Founder’s favorite corporate middlemen, little is known about Vorta development aside from the apocryphal belief that they had once been nothing more than ‘bush baby’ like arboreal creatures that were painfully shy and weak. According to so-called legend, a family of Vorta hid a Founder from a group of ‘Solids’ that had taken to hunting it for its differences. In return for the safe keeping, the Founder promised that the species would someday be transformed into near omnipotent beings that would take their rightful place at the top of a massive intergalactic empire.
It was following that belief, that the Founders made due on their promise and bio-genetically engineered them into the highly intelligent, svelte humanoids that they now are, that they found themselves serving as the right hand as tools to Dominion conquest. The Founders had managed to firmly root the belief that they were Gods, to be served and pleased with complete obedience and without question. Furthermore, they were given the reigns of a race of bio-genetically engineered warriors; the Jem’Hadar.
A single Vorta stood at command of each and every Jem’Hadar ship, the ship’s first officer listening only to that particular individual and carrying out their orders while the rest of the crew followed them blindly. In order to ensure complete obedience, the Vorta dosed the Jem’Hadar with a highly addictive drug known as ketracel-white that had lethal effects during withdrawal and, as such, kept the Jem’Hadar tightly tethered to their Vorta master.
Shortly after the last Dominion War, and with more Vorta becoming increasingly more interested in freedom and life beyond the Founders (who had proven to be less and less the Gods they claimed to be), the Founders took to the idea of the complete genocide of the species; going so far as to create a new race to act as a cleaning crew during the planned extermination. With the threat of the Modain growing, and knowledge of the growing Stenellian Ascendancy growing increasingly more perturbed by Founder presence as they cut through, and across their territory, a group of defectors set out on what many felt would be a suicide mission through the stars to reach the Stenellis home world of Apsha and make their plight known. In response, Emperor Perrin Daio’Nox, unable to ignore their cries for help or stomach the thought of genocide, sent a fleet of his finest warriors across to meet the Modain threat and eradicate it. The Modain easily neutralized, the Ascendancy - as a whole - turned its attention on the crippled Dominion. Within a few short years the Founders had been scattered, if not destroyed, and the Vorta set free to their own devices under the guidance and provenance afforded to them by the Stenellis people and their collective Ascendancy – which eventually came to hold the Cardassian Union as well after it sought safety from Klingon and Romulan threat.
It wouldn’t be long before the species once more reclaimed natural bio-rhythms and began to pair off and reproduce on their own and without the devastatingly genetically limiting effects of cloning. The return to Kurill Prime, instead of the small moon set up as camps by the Founders, brought with it discovery of ancient artifacts suggesting and depicting a far more advanced race. While the race had been arboreal and widely nocturnal, they were still highly adept hunters and craftsmen that reigned supreme in their environment, and not the helpless prey animals that the Founders had long since taught them that they were. It is now widely suggested that the Founders preyed upon the Vorta’s gentle, curious nature and polytheistic belief system, that centralized on a sun God and their disciples, to twist and manipulate the species into their perfect scape goat.
Left to their own devices, the Vorta population on Kurill Prime has divided into several clans, or septs. Each sept is governed by a Tribunal head by a chieftain. Gender has no role in how chieftains or the tribunal members are selected as such is done by democratic process when a chair member passes or steps down. Chieftains remain power from time of election until time of death, unless they choose to step down from their position. A new Chieftain is decided upon during a month-long ceremony in which every tribunal member from every sept comes together to decide who will rise among them to help govern the lacking clan. They are extremely loyal by nature, and while not a violent race, they will defend their clans and families to the death if need be.
Still preferring darkness to daylight, most commerce is run in the evening hours on Kurill Prime, and it’s not unheard of to see Vorta being declared as “night owls” on other worlds. As such, many have become artisans and craftsman lending themselves to the creation of prized light sources and lanterns purchased and traded throughout the Gamma Quadrant and Stenellian territory where the race has become quite accepted. Others are highly adept mathematicians and scientists, lending themselves well to developing technology and acting as scholars and teachers.
The species remains “Pagan” in many ways, now resorting to reading old texts and working hard to decipher an old runic language found within the pages. Scholars have cracked portions of the code and traditionalists have even taken to honoring depictions of great holidays and celebrations based around the seasons not unlike Ancient Earth’s Norse and Aboriginal cultures. Spring and Autumn, in particular, are met with vibrant festivities and feasts that last a week long. Some Stenellis religious traits have begun to be adopted as people are eager to appreciate something greater than themselves while their heritage is still being established after being broken for so long.
Music and art are large parts of Vorta society. With extremely sensitive hearing and poor daytime eyesight, Vorta have come to appreciate soothing noises and love symphony and singing in ways that many species could never appreciate. They often feel music and associate it with emotion. They have created several of their own instruments and musicians have made a name for themselves. Almost every Vorta is musically inclined in some way whether it be through singing or playing an instrument.
Vorta mate for life. Partners are chosen with extreme care. It’s often that they know one another for a long time before they forge that final commitment. Genetic compatibility still plays a huge role as they struggle to increase in numbers and create a stable population. Some, though few, spend their entire lives looking for an ideal partner. When one member of a Vorta union passes, it’s extremely rare that they take on another lover for reasons other than procreation. While they may forge a bond with their new partner, they remain extremely faithful to their first and often mourn openly and seek forgiveness from the tribunal for betraying that love. As such, Vorta that become spinsters or sexually promiscuous are relatively unheard of. Some teenagers occasionally try to rebel against ‘societal convention’ by attempting to practice with multiple partners, but even more rare is the adult that remains as such. It is considered improper to take a non-Vorta as a lover.
Vorta are extremely sensitive, inquisitive, and emotionally in tune beings that show affection often and gratuitously behind closed doors. It’s widely accepted to hold hands and sometimes even briefly going cheek to cheek as a sign of respect and adoration – however as society continues to grow more and more progressive in nature, public affection is becoming more and more prominent. Couples are now often seen holding hands and even trading kisses.
Weddings are officiated mainly by sept chieftains and revolve around a two-week long celebration that culminates in a ceremony in which two consenting Vorta are bound together in a union centered around two rings carved from Yaragile wood, a strong, richly colored wood not unlike Earth’s mahogany, studded in small raw, blindingly brilliant stones found only on Kurill Prime. A small amount of blood from each of the two Vorta is coated on the inside of the ring bands and those bands are then placed on the second to last finger of the wearer’s left hand. A small length of chain, about three feet in length and mere millimeters thin, is attached to the rings. The ritual then continues while the pair recites vows and are chanted over by the chieftain and tribunal members of their sept. The bond is completed only when the pair consummate the union, an act that must be witnessed by the tribunal. The ritual often forges an unbreakable telepathic bond between the pair that leaves them inseparable and able to sense one another and communicate even over long distances. These unions almost always occur outdoors and nearly always at dawn or dusk.
Children are often extremely well-behaved, often to the point of suffering from the stringent rules and restrictions placed on them and the expectations of them to grow into mature adults quickly in spite of the fact that the race itself takes so long to physically mature.
Suicide is considered an honorable death if a member of society has done something to shame their sept or family. Personal dishonor is not something taken lightly.
Male and female Vorta, while easily picked apart, are not truly considered to be sexual dimorphic in so far that their coloration and over all body type remains quite similar. There are few exceptions, however as male ears are large and fan-like, ridged in rays and acting as if a display of maturity and strength where females tend to be more shell-like, not as wide from the skull. Where the males reach from top of skull down to run the length of the jaw, the cartilage of female ears separates from the skull mid-way, at about the height a human ear would terminate, and the rest stands in long, delicate, often curved and erect pointed tips. Like their male counterparts their ears are rayed with ridges leading in the central part of the canal, presumable to better channel sound. Males and females display a degree of mobility with their ears, often twitching towards sounds and displaying attentiveness to their surroundings – this is seen more in females where the range of motion is a bit greater and lend to their ears being extremely expressive at times.
As a whole, the species is extremely fair skin and easily subject to radiation/sun burns. Their porcelain complexion rarely freckles. Males seem to have cool complexions where females sport warmer undertones to their skin. Eye color ranges from pale blue to bright violet and hair is almost always somewhere in the range of dark brown to black.
Males tend to fall into the same height averages as Human males, and tend to follow the same physiology. Some are well developed muscularly, while the majority remain wiry and thin, almost willowy. Females remain small and are seen as very dainty and delicate type creatures even though they remain quite powerful physically. As a species their stream lined musculature has developed from thousands of years of arboreal dwelling that has made them reliant on both upper and lower body strength. Both have almost pixie-like facial features, though females tend to have larger eyes and lips than males with brighter and richer colored points presumably to help them bond easier with poor sighted young while the males, initially, were less vibrant in order to better blend with their surroundings.
- Height range from 5’2” – 5’5” on average
- Larger eyed
- Tend to be fuller lipped
- Extremely dainty and ‘typey’ or Pixie-like in a feminine sense
- Smaller, shell-like fans of ears where the cartilage detaches from the scalp 1/3rd to ½ way up to allow the remaining bit of ear to stand erect in delicate, often curved, pointed tips.
- Brighter and/or richer colored “points” (IE: lip, sex organs etc)
- Larger fan-line ears than span from jaw to top of skull, often concealed by hair towards the top of their heads
- Heavier muscled, though still long and lean
- External sex organ like most humanoids
- Often androgynous facial appearances
- Cooler skin undertones, paler “points” (IE: lips, sex organs etc)
- Long, sinewy muscle make them appear lean and willowy rather than bulky by and large.
- Ears are large and have rays-like ridges that extend from the middle outward and presumably draw in sound.
- Super sensitive to sound and light, they prefer darkness and soothing sounds. They can become debilitated by bright lights and concussive noise.
- Very elegant, attractive creatures as a whole.
- Dark hair and light eyes ranging from pale blue to bright violet tend to be the norm.
- They tolerate temperate climates best and fall victim to extremes in heat and chill quite easily, often succumbing to heat stroke and hypothermia without much warning.
- Extremely physically sensitive around the ears and neck and other erogenous zones to the point where they can nearly be hypnotized by touch.
Vorta in Society
Valeese :: Chief Medical Officer, Cold Station Theta
- NOTE: Consult with species October before choosing this species as a character***