Friday, October 7, 2022

Plasmoids of the Anadem

These rubbery, elastic invertebrates are one of the most commonly encountered nonhumankin of the Anadem. They have few wordlets of their own but can been found on many multi-kin habitats. They are generally easy of disposition and gregarious. They can often be found among the ranks of entertainers. 

It is believed that the ancestors of the plasmoids were discovered on some distant world by ancient human explorers. This world has been lost or at least misplaced, so that none of the scant visitors Old Earth receives from the outer galaxy can recollect any details regarding it. The tale told on Old Earth is that the pre-sophont ancestors of the plasmoids were known as zhmoon and came from a pleasant world called (appropriately, if unimaginatively) the World of the Zhmoon. Earlier spacers happening upon the world noted the gelatinous species, with seemingly no fear of other creatures. They also noted the tastiness of zhmoo flesh if appropriately prepared. 

It is possible hungry visitors would have caused the extinction of the zhmoon had not conservationists noticed them beginning to exhibit signs of intelligence greater than that of an animal. These behaviors, curiously, seemed to increase over time. It was generally accepted that exposure to human behavior and culture had triggered an aptitude for evolutionary mimicry, though there were other opinions. A renowned scientist, noting the malleability of zhmoo structure, suggested the only mimicry had been in the reciprocal consumption of some hapless would-be zhmoo hunters. The zhmoon had thereby absorbed human knowledge and mental structures. The scientist, determined to prove his theory, disappeared in the wilds of the World of the Zhmoon.

Shortly thereafter the zhmoon present humanity with manikins, the vaguely human-shaped, living but nonsentient snacks still cultivated on Old Earth today, demonstrating a biochemical know-how heretofore unseen among them. The snacks enjoyed a brief period of faddish popularity, but they were the plasmoids entre to galactic society.

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