Species: Gwarmuthun Virulence
Origin Homeworld: Unknown
The only historical information available on the Gwarmuthun Virulence has been compiled from intercepted Scryve transmissions. No concrete data exists; The Scryve desperately tried to erase their mistake (at least from the history books).
The Gwarmuthun were an aggressive, intelligent, semi-crustacean species discovered by the Scryve between 6000 – 5500 BCE at the beginning of their post-nuclear era (pre-interstellar). The Scryve surmised the Gwarmuthun to be a threat and needed dealt with. However, after the successful bio-engineering of the Pinthi, it was decided the Gwarmuthun could be useful if made docile.
The Scryve used a naturally occurring toxin from the Gwarmuthuns’ homeworld, known to be an extreme relaxant, in conjunction with a weakened, mutatable virus from their own catalog to create an aerosol “vaccine”. Lab tests proved successful; Species-wide vaccination not so much.
Upon introducing the vaccine to the Gwarmuthun atmosphere, an unexpected reaction took place. The dormant virus “woke up” and transformed the original toxin into one that causes extreme aggression. Before the Scryve science team realized what they had done, their entire fleet was bombarded by a Gwarmuthun attack. There were no “survivors”; however, several brief Scryve transmissions stated that many of their ships were boarded and all personnel, along with all the other various creatures on board became infected, indicating the virus is highly contagious and easily transmutable across all species.
The Story Today:
Thus far, only a few reports have been made regarding encounters with The Virulence. The first report depicts the Sik-Mu-Thieln’s initial contact with the GV. A SMT scavenge fleet discovered what appeared to be a small squadron of derelict ships within a debris field. Easy salvage, right? As the fleet crossed the debris field, the “derelict” ships sprung to life, attacking anything that moved (even other pieces of space junk). One SMT ship was immobilized, boarded, and almost immediately began firing on the rest of the SMT fleet. The fleet suffered the loss of 4 ships and in their retreat noticed the attackers stopped giving chase, turned around to dismantle their trophies, and began installing the new components on their own ships.
Another report highlights an Ellerian interaction with the GV. The Ellerian Flotilla happened to phase-jump into a similar debris field as the Sik-Mu-Thieln. As they were recharging their “batteries”, they too were attacked by a small squadron of formerly derelict ships. Having the entire Flotilla available, the Ellerians quickly quelled the skirmish and captured several live specimens for questioning. No useful information was obtained as the GV “incubators” could only sputter madness. Further experimentation revealed that Ellerians are immune to the effects the virus (the only known species to be so), although it is unclear whether or not they can be carriers. It is assumed their nanite biology quickly detects and attacks the infection, but further study is needed to determine if their nanites can completely eradicate the virus, or if it has something more to do with the Ellerian flora genetic structure. Is this why the Sik-Mu-Thieln so desperately *need* Ellerian nanite technology?
Up to this point, the GV’s primary (only) purpose as we can understand it is to spread. All comm hails seem ineffective as the player is greeted with nothing more than shrieks of agony and terror before being attacked. However, various reports of other Gwarmuthun Virulence interactions begin seeping in, indicating there may be an intelligence (possible sapience) guiding/controlling the infection. Maybe, just maybe, the next hail will prove fruitful and some sense can be made of the madness.
Ship: Virulent Incubator – A hodge podge of piecemeal parts “sewn” together from victims’ ships. Don’t be fooled though—this is a fast, agile, capable ship in the right hands.
Primary Fire – A powerful, short-range EMP laser capable of disabling all systems of even the largest ships.
Secondary Fire – A crude (albeit effective), close-range “buzz-saw” used to dismantle ships into component material.
I am by no means an artist. If one of my fellow founders has/can create concept art for this, please feel free to share.