Enslavement and speciation on Tschai



Little is known about how humans first reached the planet Tschai, but unlike their relatives in other worlds, they are not the dominant species there. In fact, many of them are turned into servant species either by selective breeding, surgery and even genetic engineering. The following paper discusses the different approaches, used by the dominant alien species to modify their servants in order to better suit their adaptation and relations with other species.


Tschai is a peculiar planet, about 212 light-years from Earth near the star Carina 4269. It is best known for the fact it is inhabited by at least five sentient species, of which only one is indigenous (the Pnumes), three are invasive dominant species and it is also inhabited by humans, who first arrived some tens of thousands of years ago.

The four non-human species differ significantly from each other. According to the slightly outdated Morphological Classification of Alien Species, they are classified as follows: 1) the Chasch are class II reptiloids (e.g., terrestrial); 2) the Dirdir are felinoids; 3) the Pnume are insectoids and 4) the Wankh (Wannek) are class I reptiloids (e.g., aquatic). According to the Old Republic General Adjusted Classification of sentient species the Chasch are classified as reptiloids of the Trandoshan clade, the Dirdir are felinoids of the Zygerrian clade, the Pnume are insectoids of the Verpine clade and Wankh are amphibians of the Ootoolan clade.

Although humans were able to establish several peculiar societies, they are overall in a subordinate position in respect to the other sentient species and established four respective hybrid species, commonly known as Chaschmen, Dirdirmen, Wankhmen and Pnumekin. All of them are used as servant client races by the respective alien species. Previously believed to be enslaved, currently, none of the hybrid humans consider themselves as such and the extent of differences between them does not permit interbreeding.

The alien species take advantage of these servants mainly as a tool for better adaptation to the otherwise alien environment (except for the Pnumes) and intercommunication between the four alien species. This also suggests that humans arrived on Tschai earlier than all other alien species, and were enslaved first by the Chaschs and the Dirdirs, then by the Pnumes (convinced of the utility of such servants), and last by the Wankh, as they arrived most recently on Tschai. The evolution of the four human client races however is not universal and there are actually four different mechanisms established.

Selective breeding and surgery

The enslavement strategy of the Pnumes was the most straightforward and least sophisticated. They put their human servants under selective breeding, aiming at certain traits. Thus, the Pnumekins gradually evolved into a new human subspecies, but were still close enough to allow interbreeding with the parent species. Accordingly, the Pnumekins are the least similar to their master species in comparison to the other client races.

The Wankhmen were subjected to selective breeding, but in addition, the Wankhs developed sophisticated surgical procedures, aimed to modify the vocal cords of the Wankhmen. This is needed in order to provide the ability to resemble the peculiar vocalization of the master species. In addition, surgery of the nose is aimed to allow closure of the nostrils to help adapt to the aquatic lifestyle. This closure, however, is not voluntary and Wankhmen nostrils close after every inhalation and open with every exhalation. Both surgeries are performed on the newborn Wankhmen at the age of 3.

Genetic surgery

The resemblance of Chaschmen to their master species is much higher than in the above client races, which is achieved by a complicated surgical procedure, called genetic surgery. The high technology society of Chaschs enabled them to develop a methodology to implant genetic material of their own in the developing embryos of the Chaschmen. Usually, this procedure is done in uterus around the 3rd week of the pregnancy when a hybrid chromosome bearing several Chasch’s genes is incorporated into the forming ectoderm of the embryo. In a result the foreign chromosome affects the developing nervous system and skin, not affecting the rest of the embryo and Chaschmen are covered with reptiloid scales, but most importantly, the impact on the nervous system is believed to make them extremely obedient to the Chaschs.


At the beginning of the studies on the client races, no one believed that interbreeding between humans and some of the alien species would be possible. The least believable interbreeding was considered the one between humans and dirdirs due to their complex sexuality. As became apparent, a total of 12 types of male and 14 types of female exist among the Dirdir species, each differing in chromosome number, sexual organs, and compatibility with one or several of the types of the opposite gender.

However, it occurred that the human reproductive system is actually compatible with several of the Dirdir’s gender types and that interbreeding results in viable, fertile offspring. Although actual interbreeding between Dirdirs and humans is relatively rare, a small population of Dirdirmen was slowly established and soon they started to form their own caste in the Dirdir social structure. Because of their origin and far resemblance to actual Dirdirs, the Dirdirmen are considered degenerated Dirdirs and serve their master species with the desire to prove themselves as worthy of their origin.

[1]  Jack Vance (1968-1970) Planet of Adventure,  Ace Books

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