Lightshow - 2-armed mutant musician

Zhül Xhai Zero - single-marked dead-speaker

Zhtaar Xim Z'mat (DJ) and Zade Xai Zeenbaum (nerd) - students

Pronounciation Guide:

Ks - tax Sh - shut X and Z - zebra Xh and Zh - vision
J - jarG - goalQ - back S - saw
Z' - Zuh or Zee, depending on what is placed after it (forms its own syllable)
Umlauted Vowels - ahh, eeh, aie, ooh, ooo - replace normal vowels if needed

The appearance of two 'Z' sounds in this language is purely cosmetic, originally made to distinguish names (male and female) however the fashion of having whatever glyph your parents liked seeing overtook any formal gender assignment to X or Z long ago. The inclusion of Ks, Sh and S names is more recent (from 300 to 50 years prior) but is accepted by almost everyone.

The pattern of naming Zeddian children however remains constant: The first and last names are always of the same consonant, the middle alternates. This does have exceptions - when there is no parent, the child is orphaned, whoever raises the child may choose a new 'Family' name for them; and when a child is abandoned they often have only one or two names, with no 'Family' designator. Some who have traveled offworld (or been born off world) have a variety of differently occurring patterns (such as first-middle same, last different, etc).

Their names read as Western Human names do, the first name is their formal, normally-called given name, their middle name is a more private but sometimes used name, and their last name is a family marker. Family lines choose which name they use, the masculine or feminine. Sometimes this is determined by religion (always the male's name) or by social standing (the female's most often). Last names are rarely if ever hyphenated, though they've seen it being done on other worlds and some adventuresome couples are experimenting with it.

The Xh and Zh sounds should technically be separate, however they sound so much alike to human ears there's really little reason to do so. They are both distinct from the Sh sound by being voiced. Each person does have a singular glyph that they adopt over time, a signature but more used as a seal proving their identity. This is usually some combination of their names done as a cartouche enclosed in a circle or other shape.

Zandor/a Xxy Z'bul - gendershifting matter-creator, student

Xavier Xander Zoeller - masseur and instructor

Zeddians - a description

From the Planet Zed, all of these tall, slender humanoid people have striking black and white skin. They usually have markings in black, over shock-white skin. These markings are often paired around arms, wrists, legs, over the back, or on the face. Very rarely (possibly 1 in a million births), one is born with single markings - one that covers a smaller portion of the face, or appears without a 'pair'. Even more rare than that (one in ten million births) are those who have white markings over black skin.
Their hair is similarly colored - however it also comes in shades of grey from extreme purple-black through graphite, silver, grey and off-white. Their hair is particularly full, compared to Earth Humans', and grows in fully only after three or four years.  (Thus is is common to see young kids being identified by their markings, rather than their hair, because they have so little of it to begin with.) Neither gender has body hair, though the males can grow thick beards. Their eyes oddly enough are of any hue, often browns, reds or yellows.

Their bodies are longer than humans by a few inches because they have a second pair of arms situated below their first, and the accompanying vertebrae, collar bone, scapulae and usually nipples/breasts. Rarely (1 in 500 thousand births), a Zeddian is born with only one pair of arms, though mostly they are 'changed' to another form of limb such as wings, or even 'taur' legs. Extremely rarely, they are born with simply two arms instead of four - and are often abandoned at birth for this.
This is not seen as any particular cruelty - their entire world uses all four arms, not just two. Many pieces of machinery and equipment utilize double-pairs of hands, and all clothing is designed for 'normal' four-armed Zeddians.
A caveat to this phenomenon is that when a mutation (of any kind) occurs in a Zeddian child, they are often also gifted with much stronger psionic powers than their parents. See below for those.

Zeddian physiology is simple, very similar to most humanoids, however they do have two hearts, one located on the upper left, the other on the lower right of their 'arm girdle' area (in other words, when they place their hand over their hearts, it's with the upper right hand's palm over their left breast, and their lower left hand over their lower right breast). Their digestive system is slightly more effective than Earth Humans, and is thus shorter and more sturdy, leaving less waste in more concentrated doses. They have a strong ability to take in oxygen, their lungs are proportionately larger than a Human's by several inches top to bottom, and their blood accepts more oxygen when moving through them.

Zeddians are otherwise 'human' in most ways. They can often pass as Earth Human when their 2nd set of arms are disguised or hidden, though their skin is shocking white, and their markings may lead people to investigate further. Zeddians live around 200 years, though by the time they are 180 they are usually unable to function normally. They grow somewhat more slowly than Earth Humans, achieving puberty around age 16 and full adulthood (sexual maturity) at around 24. Their gestation period is around 8 Earth-time months. However, their babies are often more self-sufficient at age 5 or 6 than a Human child would be, learning to speak and gaining more physical control over their bodies because their brains are hardwired for more limbs than Humans. All babies are encouraged to learn complicated games with their hands and fingers, to facilitate this.

Almost every Zeddian is born with a certain psionic power, or affinity toward an element. Often times, their markings will portray this closeness - someone with cloudy shaped markings may have air-based psionics. One with a sharp, angled marking may control electricity. These are only faintly connected and have never been proven to be consistant, as each Zeddian's power level and ability to control their psionics differs. Their powers usually emerge during phases of childhood growth, through puberty and into young adulthood. It's very rare that a Zeddian shows their powers any later than around 20 years of age, and even rarer to show before the age of 5 or 6. Those that do show promise earlier in life are often given special training in addition to their normal schooling.

Zed is considered a 'modern/high tech' civilization as far as technology goes. However, their social structure is slightly different than Earth's because of their psionics. They have a strong sense of spirituality, and complicated religions that are often at odds with not only each other, but portions of the political world. There are no proven cases of true divine beings on Zed - their spiritualism is entirely psionic in nature, though their ancestors did not realize this, and their rituals live on.

Their culture, languages and arts greatly resemble Earth's, but with distinctions between classes of people are stronger on Zed. Those with religious professions and convictions stronger than others are set apart, as are those with spectacular mutations or abilities beyond the norm. (Not every extremely powerful Zeddian has had mutations, there have been many leaders with psionics almost ten times as strong as their compatriats who appear in other ways to be completely normal.) Also, political and social splits exist that often cause individuals to become 'invisible' or 'untouchables'. But what one group considers to be untouchable, another might eagerly welcome into their fold.

Zed attained starfaring status only recently, around 100 years ago. This has brought them into contact with a multitude of different species and worlds, and not all of those worlds are considered 'proper' by most Zeddians. Compared to many worlds, Zed is strongly conservative in its views and open policies. Very few off-worlders are allowed to roam the planet without an accompanying Zeddian, and most who do visit are encouraged to remain in certain areas. (They are not 'confined' unless they can be determined to be a political or social threat... and that's causing strife among both young people and the religious groups - and between them as well.) Zeddians are not encouraged to leave their world. They do not have an overpopulation problem like some, there is no clear 'need' for them to be present on other planets (according to both political and religious leaders - the one thing they do usually agree upon). While many religious leaders consider the education of Zeddians to be paramount, they almost uniformly insist it be a Zeddian education and not an offworld one. Thus, sending any Zeddian child or teen offworld for education or travel is frowned upon. However, this is putting them at odds specifically with parents who have very gifted children - kids who would benefit from being trained by off worlders who have similar but stronger powers.

This has led to a strange union between some leaders and the Vocorr, a galactic group which has extreme conservative-right views about what is and is not 'proper'. Their views coincide with certain leaders' and a strong cell of this group is established on Zed. They are attempting to restrict the arts in ways that other worlds usually scoff at. Earth is the only truly Vocorr-free world, though even there, pockets of people use the Vocorr views as a method to gain control over their own children's ways. Zeddians, however, are a more laid-back lot than many other humanoids. Rather than fully embrace or fully deny offworld politics, they accept that people will be people, and leave it at that.

There are 'freedom fighters' among Zeddians, just as there are 'zealots' attempting to control things. There are also spies, moles, sleepers and the like among each group. These 'professionals' are viewed with the same attitude as one would a 'plumber' or 'pencil pusher' - they're of equal value to society even if they only are attempting to benefit one small faction of that society.

Zanda "Zapp" Xi - mercenary/troublemaker (and mutant)

  All characters shown on page are (c) 2007 Lethe Gray/Droppin the Fork. Zeddians and entire contents of generator aside from java code are also (c) Lethe.