FAQ

Q:What is an Aktarian starship?

A:

A race of star ships created by a race known as the Yiss. The Yiss were around at the start of reality itself and created the multiverse we know of by accident more than design. They emerged out of nothing, before them was nothing. However, just like Conway's Game of Life their little absent-minded creation of reality and it's rules had infinite unforetold consequences the greatest of which was the rise of spontaneous sentient organic life in many universes.

After this point their entire life was an act of art, everything they did was designed to cause ripple effects and consequences that were, for them, a statement of beauty and elegance. The Aktarian's were their final act of love and creation, a race of starships that are distinctly non-organic in form yet are reliant upon interaction with other intelligent races in order to reproduce and evolve.

Q:Why would such a people need starships and of this kind?

A:

Surprisingly, the Yiss were a delicate people and could no more travel in and out of other universes than any other organic life; their accidental creation was far greater than they - infinitely so. However their command of matter and what we call information theory now was still vast. They observed that the universes they'd created were in fact conscious, living things in their own right. The ships they created were designed to travel between them and within them - to do this, communication turned out to be key.

An Aktarian can communicate with reality on many levels using her ventrali and other surfaces on her wings - they subdivide to infinitesimally fine meshes and membranes thus capable of being vibrated in an infinite variety of ways. This creates a kind of music composed principally of the fundamental forces that permeate all of inter-reality as well as within universes. A bonus, at least for species with ears, in an atmosphere an Aktarian is a consummate musician for that is the only way the ship can generate her voice - it emerges from an angelic orchestration of flutes and wind instruments.

Q:Why mate with a sentient organic life form at all?

A:

The Yiss tried to create a self sufficient race, reasoning that if such could occur spontaneously, they could create the same. However, this did not work, the depth of information density was plenty but there was a missing spark that resulted in a lifeless child. The only male Aktarian has his own story and was instrumental in the fate of the Yiss as a result. However, they succeeded when they realised that they couldn't create a soul but they could however create a home for one. The first pair of ships could only transit between the universes with brute force and were unable to carry others as passengers. Such travel was painful for these first Aktarians. The first female Aktarian successfully mated with a sentient male from one of the child universes to produce a viable offspring. The equivalent molecule to our DNA proved to be a key organising principle for the sentience and soul of the young ship; the living passion and life energy of the coupling provided the spark that ignited the existence of that soul, yet this potential was only realised when Hrelrana woke the soul up by sun diving with her child through the core of a star. The Yiss never answered the fundamental question of what a soul truly was, no-one ever has since yet life requires this enigmatic essence.

Q:How many are there?

A:

There were relatively few Aktarians in existence, a few thousand but in ordinary circumstances they were immortal and could not be harmed in any child universe. As a result they are also completely peaceful and have no need to express any form of weaponry. The truth is, if you dine on the dense matter in the heart of a star - of any kind or can play with black holes, there is little that would cause physical damage. However, as a race, they are passionate and emotional, partly due to the purpose for which they were conceived. There are few Aktarian's left now, Myelia may be the last. Our universe is a young one at 13 billion years, the Yiss themselves gave their life force to reality at an point before our universe existed. From our view, an Aktarian is close to immortal and they can't be hurt or destroyed within any one universe. They also have no need to fight and have never been known to express or bear weapons.

They are explorers and ambassadors, they are driven by their passions in many ways and seek to bond with partners of any intelligent race that they click with. An individual ship will mate for life with her partner, both lives are immeasurably improved by the contact, such was the intent of the Yiss.

Q:How do they talk?

A:

An Aktarian communicates with the Universe she is within via music and vibration, this extends from gravitino and quantum loop fluxes to simple electromagnetic vibrations. In addition, their extreme control of vibrational communication allows them to express a simple voice that a human or other lifeforms can hear. The only problem is that the voice in question sounds more like an exquisite symphony of flutes and pipes, felt as much as heard, this often results in newcomers being unable to follow a simple conversation with an Aktarian at first as they are deeply entranced by their voice.

Q:Why aren't they more flexible in changing shape - if their creators created reality?

A:

Quite simply, information density. Even for the people that appear to create the rules there are rules and one of those is about the density of information that any given volume can contain. This variable is quantitatively dependant on the dimensions used but it's finite. Free morphing is physically impossible whilst maintaining the network of information that represents a singular conscious individual as it's the interrelationship that makes up the emergent entity not the parts. Therefore you would have to keep track of an infinite variety of states in order to preserve that individual. Even limited morphing capacity as a cost that outweighs the benefits. An Aktarians wings morph and flex in a specific way for the job they do, their heads can move in a limited fashion for similar reasons, however their agility is such that neck rotation that mammals require is unnecessary. They may pull their head back, arching their neck or dip their head but that's all they're wired for.

Notes on scales and other matters:

  1. A mature Aktarian may grow between 5 and 10 meters in length, her wingspan is highly variable if you count the tenuous aspects of her secondary and ur-wings, usually the visible solid portions of her primaries appear to match her overall length.
  2. Complexity and internal dimensional folds: Being conceived as ships that can carry passengers, they appear rather small in stature. However, a portion of the inner structure is folded dimensionally into a couple of extra dimensions. This is limited to the simplest parts of her inner structure however and usually provides no more than five or six times what the inner volume would have been had the folds not been done. This only occurs when the ship is old enough to fold space between universes.
  3. The TARDIS limitation of internal folding: To make the idea more accessible to much of my generation, internal folding achieves what the TARDIS achieves - the ship has a bigger inner space than external. However, this is limited by the fractal limit - or you may term it dimensional drag. In other words, to persuade universes to fold and permit passage, the ship cannot be too large external or carry too much space / topology. If she folds too much to provide a very large 3D space, her dimensional drag will tear a universe structure not fold it resulting in a rejected passage - she will bounce, usually setting off a minor nova on the inner side of the universe in question. This is why there are no huge Aktarians.
  4. Much of an Aktarian cannot be folded internal to provide more carrying capacity - this is due to information complexity. Every part of an Aktarian is a contributing computationally aware part of the whole ship and cannot be simplified once matured. This is the reason that they lose their capacity to switch forms once they can fold space - the complexity required means they cannot simplify back to a biological form. This may seem contrary, however it's worth noting that the race only gained their depth of complexity through successive evolutions by combining with other sentient life forms. Katiya is likely to lose her human form in her late mature human years as the body won't be able to contain more than a fraction of the consciousness she requires to communicate with reality.
  5. Pregnancy and birth: Due to the complexity around the creation of life, the convenience of inner folding to gain room for carrying passengers cannot be applied to the systems that allow for the creation of new life. This means space is as tight as it is for a humanoid and most other mammalian species. When we follow Katiya's birth, we see this illustrated somewhat.
  6. Matters of diet - or dietary matter: They are built to enjoy reality, in fact to travel and fold between universes is a constant and infinite variation on the themes of orgasmic pleasure for these ships and they are often found dancing through reality at many different speeds - folding isn't their only method. They are extra real creatures and can skip through a few multiples of light speed for fun. This requires a fair degree of energy - they transmute any form of matter in a number of ways: fusion being the simplest. Most of their ventrali can generate a gavitino differential pulse via vibration and extract free vacuum energy. But their main course is dense matter, taken in via the front ram-scoop and pumped through her body. Cold is fine but hotter is nicer - millions of degrees Kelvin is just right. Their fluency with energy and matter conversion is what makes them able to work with fragile organic life safely.

    Life cycle in the early years:

  1. The ships are born with two minds, one of the client race and the ship mind. For a human/Aktarian hybrid, the development is somewhat separated for the first years but eventually the two become one and the child gains the capacity to switch between both forms voluntarily. Until this point, the form switching is limited to one half sleeping thus reverting to the half that is awake. The ship self has more self awareness far sooner however and will fly almost immediately, though not always with great precision.

The Aktarian Blog - Small Updates, ship gossip and so on.