Taerel:Biology (Zu'Aan)

Taerel, a worldbuilding project


At a rough glance, zu'aan look basically humanoid. They possess a humanoid body shape, binocular vision, and recognizable eyes, noses, and mouths. But zu'aan are not in any way, shape or form actually Human. They have a much wider range of bodily sizes, skin and hair colors, most of which vary highly with climatic bands rather than genetic groups. Their hair is thicker and coarser than that of Humans. zu'aan normally have light pink to light brown skin in city zu'aan and light brown skin to very dark brown skin in tribal zu'aan. Some zu'aan have albinism and hyperpigmentation., giving very light [greenish white] for the former or very dark skin [almost black] for the latter.

Ciry zu'aan sometimes have finer hair than tribal zu'aan. Tribal zu'aan hair is often a dark brown or black (although it is often died), and more rarely reddish blond. Most city zu'aan have blond, white or light grey hair and sometimes red hair . The eyes are larger, more wider set than a humans, without eyebrow ridges or the like. Most tribal zu'aan have dark green or dark brown eyes with some having dark blue or dark grey eyes. Most city zu'aan have light blue or grey eyes with some having amber or silver eyes. The nose is smoother, the cheekbones more angled. The pointed ears are nearly perpendicular to the skull and cheekbones.

In other ways there bodies are far different than Humans. They use copper rather than iron for most oxygen binding duties in their blood, making it green in color and giving them a faint greenish tint to their skin regardless of color. They lack body hair of any kind anywhere but the head, and their skeletal system is double-jointed by Human standards. zu'aan genetic stability is somewhat more fragile than humans, and as they age certain mutations are more likely to express themselves in glowing patches of skin, blackened scars of constricted flesh and other minor alterations such as fangs, claws or leathery skin.

Some zu'aan prize such things and see them as gifts of the gods. Some zu'aan hate mutations and kill the mutants. zu'aan are mammalian and reproduce sexually, with a gestational period of twelve months and and a puberty onset of roughly twenty years of age (slightly less for some females in clan environments.) They are a little larger and three times stronger than humans, with greater muscle strength in a pound-for-pound comparison. The zu'aan have much longer lifespans, most can live to two hundred, but spans as long as five hundred were not uncommon in the heyday of their culture and technology. City zu'aan racial groups are more variegated than tribal types.

City zu'aan racial groups have somewhat less genetic diversity and a greater propensity towards mutation. Tribals are, as can be expected from nomadic wandering hunters, more muscular and somewhat taller than city zu'aan.

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