by Max Barry

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Draconians

The species of Draconis draconis is a humanoid, bipedal dragon-like creature that originates from the planet Dv Prime, in a system of a similar name.

Basic Anatomy: Most members of the Draconis draconis species possess scales made of goethite, save for the subspecies Draconis draconis orientum, of which the members of possess leather like skin rather than scales, and Draconis draconis glacias, of which the members will sometimes possess fur alongside regular scales. Despite a reptilian appearance, all draconians are warm-blooded and thus produce their own heat. Most draconians also stand at 2.5 meters, though some have reportedly stood at 5, and all draconians possess the same kind of hollow, geothite bones.

Cranial Anatomy: The cranial cavity of a draconian is similar to that of a predatory lizard combined with a human. The portion of the skull that holds the brain is similar to that of an average human. From the back of the skull, there are two appendages that constitute the horns, and a muzzle grows from the front. The teeth inside are made of the same geothite that makes up the scales of the draconian. Certain subspecies, such as Draconis draconis fax, also have spines and plates running down the back of the neck and head. Internal organs in the roof of the mouth, such as the Thor's thimble (an organ capable of creating small electric charges) and the lysin'ura organ (an organ that produces hydrogen), serve as methods for producing fire, though not every subspecies has this, and some have lysin'ura organs that produce low temperature phosphorous gasses, for opposite effects (such as the Draconis draconis glacias).

Torso Anatomy: Most draconians do possess wings, ranging to their full body length in wingspan to sometimes more. On occasion, there are certain draconians born with vestigial wings, that can either not open or are far too small for actual upward momentum. However, an estimated 40% of draconians do not know how to fly, due to the fact that space travel negates this. In any case, most of the internal organs seem quite standard, aside from the massive lungs which allow most draconians to hold their breath for up to five hours underwater, and the slow heart. The lungs are designed specifically to produce a constant flame or gas plume, often requiring massive amounts of oxygen. The heart, despite popular belief, does not beat at one beat per minute. It beats at ten. Still incredibly slow, but faster than what is usually believed, as well as within the realm of possibility.

Upper Arm Anatomy: Draconians have typical humanoid arms, save for scales and sharp claws.

Lower Body Anatomy: Draconians typically have a long tail coated in scales, and two humanoid legs. The feet, however, aren't as humanoid as human feet. There are only four toes, three on the front and one on the back, of which are curved. This is a vestigial trait inherited from proto-draconians who required curved toes to pick up large animals. Draconians do have sexual organs, but on moral standards, I will not list them here. Considering the fact that they are multicellular humanoid aliens, you can draw your own conclusions as to how they reproduce.

Culture: Draconians are a mixed bag in terms of culture. They are highly militarized and have a large standing army on their home planet, and most of the other draconians that exist on Dv Prime live out lives consisting of farming and other simple tasks. Nomadic draconians, the ones often seen outside their home planet, are either assassins, bounty hunters, or merchants. While bounty hunters are more easily distinguishable (heavy armor, weapons, etc.) assassins and merchants wear the same cloaks, same masks, and usually have concealed weapons. Only difference between the two is that merchants don't carry around sniper rifles under their cloaks, unless they are an arms dealer. Merchants also tend to be very shifty due to connections with Galax, and often deal in black market goods. As such, draconian nomads are often feared or ostracized due to connotations carried by the typical merchants and mercenaries.

Proto-Draconians: Finally, proto-draconians are used to describe any species that possesses draconic features that came before Draconis draconis. Many of these proto-draconians, mostly referred to as dragons, look exactly as they are depicted in many stories. They only reside on the planet Dv Prime, and cannot regularly communicate with other species outside their close relative species. However, they are incredibly ancient, and some are believed to be over two millennia in age.

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