> Salani (plural Salanis)

[written by D^Knight]

A lizard-like race. They will do anything for credits, with a cold-blooded detachment. Mercenaries to the extreme, if they cannot fulfil an obligation, they will provide an alternative service that should be equally worthwhile. They will give you exactly your money's worth, and no more. If, however, their employer cannot pay them, then they will see it as a mortal insult. They will then hunt the debtor with the same cold-blooded detachment they use on their victims. The only way to prevent them from killing you is to pay them the amount that is owed. They will then simply forget about the insult.

Salanis had no concept whatsoever of friendship, trust and loyalty, before they met humans, sprites and other Anthros. To them, money is everything, and the only religion they have is in money. This is not to say that they are acquisitive; it simply means that they expect exact payment for their services.

The only deviation from this is when someone helps a Salani. Then, that Salani will simply return the favour someday, in an equivalent form. (For example, if you saved a Salani's life, expect your life to be saved next time you are in danger.) If the Salani is unable to fulfil that obligation, another Salani will do it. This is not out of friendship, but simply out of a need for the debt to be paid.

The Salani social structure is rigid and unchanging. They reproduce by asexual means, and the parent is responsible for the child's well-being and education until the child reaches maturity, which is generally around twenty years of age. Salanis do not have a hierarchy as such, but there is one Supreme Leader who arbitrates disputes and keeps track of all debts and payments. The position is hereditary, and the child usually retains the wisdom of his/her parent.

Salanis live to an age of around a hundred years, and they are fully functional until then. There has never been a recorded case of a Salani being unable to fulfil his/her duties due to a physical inability (except for death). Neither has there been any known cases of physical deformities among the Salanis. Indeed, they all look so alike that it is hard for an untrained eye to differentiate between them.

Salanis come from the colony world of Salan [Beta XII]. They treat outsiders with a neutral attitude. Nothing seems to make them emerge from their shell of detachment.

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