Vimh

Ratling

The Vimh are scavenging mammalian creatures found throughout the frontier. Even the casual observer can see their rodentia ancestry. Each of the major frontier races has their own name for the race, usually quite derogatory in nature. The human term, ‘ratling’ is one of the least offensive terms, although they prefer to call themselves ‘Vimh’ (both singular and plural). Although not a proper scientific classification, Rodentia-Sapiens is the term that civil rights minded individuals have termed the Vimh.

Physical Structure
The Vimh are descended from some sort of rodent ancestry. Humans describe them as essentially having the appearance of a nearly man-sized rat. They have the typical rat-like face with sensitive whiskers, small but deft hands, and lower limbs that appear more primitive and animalistic than the Human or Yazirian humanoid form. Vimh have long hairless tails that are
quite strong, but non-prehensile.
When standing completely upright a Vimh is almost 2 meters tall, although this is not their natural posture. They stand hunched over and appear roughly 1.5 meters tall, or roughly a little shorter than the average human. Internally, the organs of a Vimh are quite similar to the Human and Yazirian races, although the digestive system seems more robust than either of those mammalian races.
Vimh eyes are quite dark, generally described as beady. The whiskers on the Vimh face are quite sensitive to touch and vibration.
The hands and feet of a Vimh have some webbing between the digits – making the Vimh quite good
swimmers. Even in cold water, a Vimh can swim for extended periods, as their furry coat is well developed for heat retention.
The skin color of Vimh is typically pale and pinkish to grayish, but the fur can vary wildly. Solid coats of browns, blacks, and grey tones are the most common fur colors. Less common are spotted coats or all white coats.
Albinism is overall quite common as well, although not typical.

Senses
Descended from tunneling rodents, the vision of the Vimh is not quite as good as Human sight in well lit areas, and not quite as good as Yazirian eyesight in darkness. However, the Vimh’s acuity for close up details is remarkable. Sensitive facial whiskers enhance this close range vision, allowing the Vimh to detect even minute movements in close proximity. Distance vision is blurry and indistinct, so Vimh do not handle ranged-weapons well.
Vimh sense of smell is quite superior to humans, generally on par with Dralasite olfactory ability. Vimh can differentiate individuals by their smell alone. Vimh may also track by scent alone, although this requires training (i.e. environmental skill, tracking).

Speech
Vimh speech is accomplished in a manner similar to that of Yazirians and Humans. Air from lungs is forced through a larynx producing a variety of sounds. Their own tongue has a rodent-like skittering quality to it, as one would expect. Vimh language is quite advanced when describing
qualities of smell, taste, food, and associated topics.
Visual descriptions of landscapes, scenery, or objects at range are more difficult for a Vimh to convey, as they simply don’t have as much vocabulary describing that kind of stimuli.

Society and Customs
The Vimh are a prolific race found throughout the frontier. Their home world is a mystery, even to the Vimh. They just seem to appear wherever the other civilized races build settlements, apparently catching rides or otherwise stowing away on transport vehicles. Many speculate that
the Vimh do not actually have a world of their own, but were genetically engineered on one of the core worlds. The unknown home world and lack of distinct Vimh culture seem to support this hypothesis. Regardless of origins, the Vimh are an ever-present part of life in urban slums of
many worlds. They live their lives day to day as scavengers, traders, and various criminal activities. Prodigious eaters, the Vimh find great amount of pleasure in food, so one could
say that Vimh family relations are generally formed around the dinner table. If Vimh have a culture to speak of, it seems to be borrowed from the immediate surroundings. Vimh do not seem to care much about maintaining extended family relations beyond their immediate nuclear family members. Vimh produce many offspring, birthing almost every year if food supplies allow,
with often three to four siblings per birthing.
The Vimh do not seem to have technology of their own, borrowing this and that from the major races. The occasional Vimh who ascends out of poverty has a great love of gadgetry and technology. When educated, Vimh gravitate to the technological trades. Because of their
limited vision, Vimh combatants prefer melee and hand to hand combat tactics.

Attitudes
The Vimh have varied attitudes towards the frontier races. Some Vimh get along quite well with any of the races, while other Vimh seem soured by their second class status and despise the other races equally. Being mammalian, they generally will get along well with Humans and
Yazirians if given a chance to overcome their social class stigma. Vimh do not care much for Dralasites, as they have very different concepts of what smells and tastes are pleasant, often causing arguments. Vimh and Vrusk have strained relations, as the Vrusk find them rather repulsive vermin that their corporations often try to remove from their premises. Surprisingly, even the Sathar seem to be unable to eradicate Vimh presence around their hidden bases.

Vimh

Rising From the Ashes Rothgar