The Virseptam Insurgence
“I don’t think you quite understand, but don’t worry—I will explain it again.”
A fraal (singular and plural) is a small, spindly humanoid with pale, almost luminous skin and a slightly oversized cranium. Two large, opaque black eyes dominate a fraal’s slightly elongated face, which also features a small pair of nostrils, tiny ear holes, and a narrow slit for a mouth. To other species, fraal possess a wizened, inscrutable, and somewhat disconcerting look about them. The average fraal stands between 3 and 3 1/2 feet tall and weighs 40 to 50 pounds.
Most fraal are timid, secretive, curious beings who enjoy scientific pursuits, particularly space exploration and xenobiology. As members of a psionically gifted yet secretive race, they take incredible pains to hide their feelings and emotions, even from each other. Fraal have difficulty grasping the relevance of art and music, they lack a sense of humor, and nonscientific subjects such as philosophy and theology escape them entirely. Science and logic underscore their perceptions of the universe around them, and any fraal who can see past these things is usually regarded as a renegade or lunatic by her peers.
The fraal homeworld was destroyed long before humans achieved faster-than-light travel. Consequently, by the time humans reach the stars, fraal society survives as a series of independent colonies, each one based on a colony ship. Although fraal take strides to avoid interfering with the natural evolution of “lesser species,” factions within a given colony occasionally advance the technology of a more primitive civilization, either by accident or as part of some grand experiment. Such endeavors, even if benign, are sometimes met with resistance from species that fail to comprehend the faction’s motives. Fraal find humans especially intriguing. Some marvel at the humans’ ability to adapt quickly to changes in their environment, while others find the genetic similarities between the two species fascinating and worth exploring.
A fraal’s vision, hearing, and tactile senses are comparable to those of the average human. However, fraal are cursed with a poor sense of smell and no sense of taste. Fraal possess innate psionic abilities. All of them can broadcast their thoughts as naturally as humans can speak out loud, but those among them who work directly with humans and other sentient species usually develop their mental powers still further—to astounding degrees, in some cases. Although they favor telepathic communication, fraal can speak when necessary and are quite adept at learning
Fraal share the following species traits:
Type: Humanoid (fraal).
Size: Small. Fraal gain a +1 size bonus to Defense, a +1 size bonus on attack rolls, and a +4 size bonus on Hide checks. They take a –4 penalty on grapple checks. Their lifting and carrying limits are three quarters of those of a Medium-size character. Fraal must use two hands to wield a Medium-size weapon, and light weapons for them are Tiny or smaller.
Ability Modifiers: –4 Strength, –4 Constitution, +4 Intelligence, +4 Wisdom, +4 Charisma. Fraal are weak and frail, but their mental abilities far surpass those of most other sentient species.
Speed: 30 feet. Despite their short stature, fraal move with surprising alacrity.
Psionics (Sp): At will—lesser mindlink; 3/ day—suggestion. Manifester level 10th; save DC 10 + the fraal’s key ability modifier + power level.
Free Language Skills: Read/ Write Fraal, Speak Fraal.
Level Adjustment: +0.