Introduction The Keelan are a race of feline provolves (apparently originally from the Utopia Sphere) that developed in isolation with the loss of wormhole links following the Version War. They would seem to cover a fair expanse of space extending outwards from Pismis 5 to the Outer Volumes (Vela Sector). Left to themselves they would have been simply one more of the millions of clades and races. But in the decades leading up to the war they were visited by a team of Dominion agents seeking allies in subverting the Concord Ontology (which the Keelan were never happy about), who in exchange for an alliance offered them nanotemplates, assemblers, and knowhow to construct conversion drives. During the War they seem to have kept a low profile, although they annexed a few nearby and poorly defended systems. More through isolation and good luck than anything else, they avoided the NoCoZo mercenary fleets, who in any case were more interested in plundering less defended Dominion and Negentropist worlds. While the galaxy was tearing itself to bits, the Keelan quietly built up their industrial base, and eventually began expanding outwards.
As they expanded via relativistic ships they cladized, as isolated colonies evolved into distinct species. For the most part they are not a warlike race, and in the post-ComEmp period acquired more advanced technologies via lease- and trade relationships with nearby NoCoZo worlds and corporations. Their love of trade is perhaps due to NoCoZo memetic subversion, although the Keelan themselves deny that.
With the rise of the Empledokcetics, the Keelan were among the first empires to embrace their culture and technology, although there are also Keelan clades that are wary of the Dokcetics, feeling that they will corrupt the Keelan way (although in the ComEmp period the same was said about the NoCoZo traders)
Physical Characteristics A fully grown adult Keelan stands roughly 1.5 metres tall and can weigh anywhere from 60-80kg. They have a typically cat-like body but unlike their baseline counterparts they stand erect. Also they possess very quick reflexes, and great physical strength. They can run very rapidly, almost twice as fast as many other sophonts, but only over short distances. Their eyes are well adapted to see in dim light or near total darkness and have the unique ability to see at the microscopic level.
Their fur is mainly sandy or tawny in shade, with many different variations. The male has a mane, which is usually a combination of two colors indicating a family crest. The male's mane runs around the back of his head, along the neck and shoulders and down both arms. Their tails usually exceed half the length of their body and is thick and bushy and the same color as their body.
Their hands and feet are similar in shape and size to those of a baseline human, however their fingers are much shorter. They retain short and stubby claws that can be retracted into the fingers and toes, which are often used in close combat.
The whiskers around the nose are very sensitive, not only to touch, but also to small air vibrations and temperature changes. This gives the Keelan the ability to detect movement and body heat in total darkness. Their hearing, is very acute and sensitive to higher sound frequencies, above the normal human range.
With general bioaugmentation the average Keelan currently has a life span of 1400 years.
Society The Keelan are a proud race and have a very family oriented society. Most of their world is run by families, from planetary government, to business, to their home defense military. The Keelan name for a pride is AMS^SORN. Usually an ams^sorn consists of about 22-29 adults and anywhere from 50-80 kittens. The nucleus of the family consists of two leaders, usually the oldest grandparents alive. The family has brothers sisters and cousins, most of them old enough to work in the family business. If one family is a trade organization, the whole family will be working within it.
The Keelan society is divided into four castes consisted of:
1. Reworhod - The Elite Class consisting of wealthy industry owners.
2. Evow - originated with the merchant class. It emphasizes interstellar trade, and specializes in trade and transport.
3. Otcbaq - the "service industry" caste, a broad-line organization emphasizing energy, transport, and luxury goods.
4. Toach - The Warrior and servant Class
All schooling is done within the family, or in the caste in general, as caste members will never leave their own caste and join another. Once born into a caste a Keelan will always be of that caste. Each family has its own council, which decides the way the family as a whole is run and also the business. Usually the head of the family is the head councilor.
Psychology The Keelan will go to great lengths to protect their family. If a family member is killed or dying they will mourn for them for a much longer period than humans do.
All Keelans have a distinct fear of large bodies of water and will go to great lengths to avoid it.
Most Keelan cities and towns are built kilometers away from any large body of water.
Language The Keelan languages date back several thousand years to at least the ComEmp period, if not before. At this time, the great GOBA KEKE, the Keelans most noted historical leader of the time succeeded in taking over their entire planet. Goba EKE developed a specialized language which was passed down through the generations of his successors within his royal family. Most of the Reworhod speak this language known as VE-GOBA, which translates as "senior". It is the Native Reworhod Caste Language. In the current era, most of the ve-goba language is spoken in clan meetings between the most senior Keelans of the Caste.
HY-GOBA is the major Keelan language and is spoken by the other Keelan castes used in everyday life.
Political Structure Keelan Society is made up of four different castes, with no formal head of state. Their society and political structure is very complex, as all four castes seem to have their own cultures.
There is a complex system of formal communication between the four castes, through which they seem to establish a common ground for most decisions on the scale of running their culture.
Most of the Keelan political structure begins at the family level and most of the the heads of each family or clan have a seat and a vote on the ruling council.
Text by Grant Thomas with additions by M. Alan Kazlev
Initially published on 04 March 2001.
Page uploaded 4 March 2001, last modified 31 March 2008