Rothen ul-Human

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Rothen [entry 1] – Humanoid.

The criminal humans that landed on Jijo believe the Rothen to be Humans long lost Patrons.

“Rothen ul- Human” (?) [entry 2]

No Official Entry

There is no official race named “Rothen.” However, a group of Humans does believe that this mysterious race is their lost Patron. These rumors are unsubstantiated, and there are a number of cults like this, with reclusive races capitalizing on Wolfling superstition by claiming to be Humanity’s Patrons. These “Rothen” are supposed to resemble tall and elegant Humans with fair hair. Some Humans (undoubtedly mad) claimed to have escaped from a place called “Poria Outpost” where Humans are kept as servants by “Rothen” who the people claimed to be “lizards in disguise.”

[Terragens are reminded that by far the bulk of evidence points toward the total—or the very nearly total—natural and spontaneous development of intelligence and civilization in Homo sapiens sapiens. It remains the position of the Terragen Council that if Humanity should have an Uplift Patron (and we almost certainly do not), and if this species is not extinct, then they had best have an EXCEEDINGLY good reason for their behavior, otherwise Terragen Forces will be LEADING the Tandu in the offensive on our so-called patrons’ homes, factories, and military installations.

Out of love for our way of life and their fellow Terragens, the Terragen council urges every decent citizen to immediately report ANY contact by sapients claiming to be from, or to represent, H. sapiens’ long lost “Patrons.”

(“Rothen,” The Alliance for Progress Encyclopedia, Project Diderot edition.)

The Problem

The question we ask begins with just the kind of appeal to Dannikinite desire—a desire to belong, MEAN something and have an explicit, definite purpose in the very act of our creation as a sophont species—that is to say, made by the likes of the “Rothen.” Humans, unlike our valued allies the Tymbrimi, the Kanten, and the Synthians, and their client species, are not just Wolflings—even Romulus and Remus had a wolf mother and a wolf family to belong to. According to the Library, Humans are something unknown in all Galactic history. We are Orphan Wolflings, foundlings, with no connections at all. We are hardly some bastard race, with parents and lineage to curse, we are much less fortunate than that—and this in a Galactic social system where pedigree is everything. As for Neo-Chimps and Neo-Dolphins, they are only marginally better off—children of a polluted foundling, and godchildren of that foundling’s most disreputable friend.

So—being the neglected, abused, abandoned, illegitimate client of a miserable, felonious, out-law species would be a tremendous step up in Galactic society for Humanity.

But what of the Rothen? What of the literally hundreds of other claims to be the Patron race of Homo sapiens? None, NOT ONE, of these claimants can be traced back to a living sapient species known to the mighty Galactic Library. By Galactic cannons, one should conclude not only that none of the claims are valid, but that none of the claimants even exist.

Yet obviously, the claims are being made. True, the vast majority of them can actually be traced back to Human beings. Some of these are propagated by frauds hoping to earn a quick buck from the credulous; a few—often the ones with staying power—by inspired madmen and/or poets with a sincere vision for the condition of sophont mammals. Some are multi-stranded religious movements. A handful of these claims seem to lead back to existing alien species or clans, pursuing their own ends. Others—like the tale of “Rothen Patrons”—have no discernible Terragen or non-Terragen origin. The trail simply vanishes. But the claim, the belief, and the stories definitely exist.

Most curious.

Another curiosity. Despite the astounding recent (as opposed to ancient) discovery of Earth, O-2 and H-2 friendly planets are very well charted indeed. Even remotely plausible Terraforming and Joviforming candidates are well catalogued—and redundantly catalogued—by the Institutes.

Yet for billions of years O-2 civilization has known how to build viable arcologies in the most hostile environments. Before contact, even Earth technology had independently replicated the accomplishment on Venus, of all places. This doesn’t even begin to account for H-2 civilization, “methane” life-forms (now extinct), and surviving machine and mimetic populations, as well as the possibility that the Five Galaxies still contain some macro-nanitic sapients (also exterminated long ago). Primitive life will live in the most hellish environments imaginable, and the little creatures eventually come to find these niches the happiest of homes. Evidently, life complex enough to support sapience is much more fastidious, and prefers extinction to discomfort, or worse—an unfashionable Galactic address.

Nobody regularly checks all those baked rocks, ice-balls, and brown dwarfs—because of course nobody would live there. But Terragens like to be thorough. The Terragen Reliability Survey brought you the Streaker fiasco. Now for our encore, the Tg.R.S. intends to begin a demographic survey of uninhabited space.


Trent Shipley.
Created: Late 1990’s

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