Delta IV

Planet

Delta IV is a particularly lush Class M world. As its star, Delta Principis, is a huge blue giant, the planet is bathed in soft blue light. Delta IV's soil is also unusually fertile. This has allowed planets from all over the Federation to adapt quickly to the Deltan climate and prosper.

Race

Deltans are a fairly recent addition to the Federation. Averaging 1.7 meters in height with a medium to slim build, their most noticeable physical feature is their natural baldness. Although roughly equal to Humans in strength, intelligence, and dexterity, they are much more psionic and charismatic. This high level of charisma is a direct result of Deltan mental powers.

Deltans are basically sensualists, being primarily motivated by intense physical experiences. According to their religion, existence is a chain of experiences, and life is simply a singly link in that chain. No one knows what is at the end of that chain or even what the next link of the chain will bring. Life is experienced only once, and the individual must gather as much experience as possible before proceeding to the next step of existence. Once the individual has passed beyond life, the chance to experience many things will be lost forever. Most Deltans choose to experience pleasure to its fullest intensity, but some actually prefer the experience of pain. Neither path is considered less or more by Deltan society.

Deltans almost always travel in groups of two or more because of their need for close relationships. These relationships involve a level of intimacy so intense that Humans could not survive it. Because of this, Deltans keep themselves emotionally separated from Humans, making them seem cold and aloof. Most Humans find this puzzling, as general beliefs about the Deltan way of life suggests the opposite.

History

During the early centuries of Deltan civilization, the people thrived on the plentiful food and the cool, temperate climate of the planet. Eventually, overcrowding began to mar the otherwise comfortable Deltan lifestyle. Cities housed over thirty million people, and the Deltan's primitive waste disposal system only added to the problem.

Eventually, a new and deadly virus developed and spread like wildfire throughout the population. Before they could learn how to combat it, the plague had claimed over twenty billion lives, about ninety percent of the Deltan race.

The few scattered survivors were devastated. Being so accustomed to the crowded life of the past, they banded together in groups, forming close attachments to one another. Coupled with their natural intensity of experiences, they soon became extremely dependent upon these intimate relationships.

Aside from the obvious impact on the population, the plague had a major effect upon Deltan society and philosophy. Deltans put a great deal of effort into scientific study and advancement, believing that the disaster could have been averted if their scientific knowledge had been more advanced. The event marked a rapid rise in Deltan technology, which has become superior to the Federation standard in some ways.

After the disaster, Deltans decided to control the propagation of their race, but without losing their necessary high level of intimacy. Eventually, they began to rely more and more on their empathic powers to intensify their experiences. The following centuries were mercifully calm, allowing the Deltans to concentrate on psionic and technological developments.

A few hundred years after the great plague, the Deltans developed space flight. Shortly after that, the Federation Starship USS Austin discovered the planet Delta, and consequently, the power that the Deltans possessed over Humans. After an incident involving the death of one of the USS Austin's officers, a quarantine was placed on Deltan space, and no vessels of any kind were allowed to enter the region until the problem could be overcome. Realizing the fragility of Humans, the Deltans made an agreement to refrain from having any sort of intimate relations with Humans. Over the years since, however, some Deltans have eased this restriction and formed close relationships with Humans and some other species.

Psionics

The Deltans have developed four psionic talents over the years. Although different from Vulcan psionics, these abilities are nevertheless powerful. Their mental powers are based on empathy which is the transfer of emotions from one being to another.

The first mental power is actually more of a byproduct of the Deltan's empathic capabilities than a power. It influences Humans as well as other species of the opposite sex, making the Deltan seem extremely attractive and desirable. The strength of the emanation varies between Deltans, but it is often very powerful. Though Deltans can control this power, to suppress it requires great concentration and constant control. Only those with high psionic ability can maintain control for a long period of time.

The second empathic power is very similar to the first. By touching another being, the Deltan can impart to him a high level of awareness and sensitivity. This power can not be controlled as it continually flows through the body. Any physical contact with a Deltan causes a tremendous surge of physical awareness, rivaling the effects of many stimulants.

The third power is an empathic link shared between a Deltan and his or her mates. A Deltan can establish this link at any time, and it remains in effect until 'shut off' by either the sender or receiver. Through intense concentration, a partner may transfer the emotions he or she is experiencing to the other. The Deltan receiving the emanations can actually identify people and the events by the exact emotional reaction felt by the sender. Though this process is similar to a Vulcan mind probe, the person receiving has no control over what he or she receives. The range of this link is not known to non-Deltans, but it is generally believed to extend for thousands of miles. Breaking this link requires a great deal of effort, but is even more traumatic for one not prepared for the separation.

The final Deltan power is more a mental discipline than an empathic ability. This mind-over-body control can be used only once, as it effectively shuts down all bodily functions. A Deltan might employ this ability if he or she no longer desires to face further experiences. As Deltans are an experience-oriented culture, very few Deltans practice this discipline.

Place in the Federation

For a long time after Delta IV joined the Federation, Deltan contact with Humans and other species in the Federation was kept to a minimum. Eventually, however, other species, and Humans in particular, learned to cope with the attraction and Deltans learned to muffle their effect on others. Still, this control is fairly short lived, and so Deltans tend to keep to themselves away from others and close to their own kind as much as possible.

Deltans can usually be found serving as diplomats or in Starfleet. Deltan diplomats wear an ornamental turban signifying their mastery of his or her empathic emanations. The ornament is made of either gold or silver and is worn wherever in the presence of Humans or other species. Deltan diplomats must have a high degree of empathic control, as the effect of their emanations would cause tremendous complications in planetary relations.

Deltan members of Starfleet are found almost exclusively in science or science-related fields. These include the navigation, engineering, and medical branches. Because of their dedication and business-like efficiency, Deltans almost always excel at their jobs. Much of their drive comes from the desire to expand the limits of scientific knowledge.

No matter what their jobs, however, Deltans are often a prime choice for landing party detail, as their desire for physical experiences gives them a keen sense of awareness. Most Deltans enjoy investigating new planets because such assignments present the opportunity for a new experience. To help prevent shipboard problems, most Deltans wishing to join Starfleet must take an oath of celibacy that applied towards species other than their own.


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