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January 1, 2013
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Vesperian Bestiary: Barbarian by MoonsongWolf Vesperian Bestiary: Barbarian by MoonsongWolf
Species: Barbarian
Other Names: Ape; Monkey
Ancestral Species: Barbarians are descended from hybrids of the cynomolgus macaque (Macaca fascicularis) and the Barbary macaque (M. sylvanus), the latter of which likely contributed to the barbarians’ common name.
Original Purpose: Research specimen and assistant animals
Habitat: Barbarians are found primarily in machinery spaces, switchboard rooms, and other areas containing equipment that they can operate. When possible, a division of barbarians will maintain a central compartment in their territory for use as a recreation and sleeping area.
Physical Description: Barbarians are the largest non-human primate species found throughout the Vesper facility. Males tend to be larger than the females, with weights ranging from 14 – 20 pounds, and their coat colours are generally tawny, brown, or grey. Barbarians have short or no fur on their faces, which are almost always concealed by a mask. Mask designs vary from individual to individual, although some divisions may have standard patterns for different communal events (births, deaths, etc.). Barbarians either have a tail that is almost as long as their body or no tail at all.
Frequency: Common
Diet: Barbarians are omnivorous and will readily eat both plant and animal products. Barbarians forage, and will grow their own crops where the means to do so is available. They generally do not hunt, but many Barbarian divisions will keep chickens or resplendents for meat and eggs.
Intelligence: Sapient; level varies from low to medium, with an average of medium.
Social Organization: Compared to the organization of many other animals within the facility, Barbarian societies tend to be relatively egalitarian. Although divisions are generally led by the most experienced members, most individuals in the division will contribute to discussions and decisions. Duties and supplies are dispensed according to ability and need. As a general rule, females will stay in the division for life, while young males will sometimes disperse to other regions. New individuals are accepted readily into the division, so long as the territory can easily support new members.
Occupations: Barbarians often work as mechanics, operating the mechanical and electrical systems that maintain power and temperature control in the regions that they live. Other Barbarians may assume roles in their divisions as farmers, foragers, medics, oracles, or caregivers (both for children and elders). Due to their intelligence and ability to manipulate objects with their hands, Barbarians often work alongside other species in exchange for supplies or protection.
Religion: Although religious practices vary from division to division, the most common beliefs and practices involve the deification of elemental concepts and/or ancestors, referred to as “voodoo.” Many divisions have a special position of honour for the Head Oracle, who is a divine interpreter. Oftentimes, oracles are well-versed not only in religious affairs, but also in healing, fighting, or mechanics (depending on the favoured divisional deities).
Other Notes: Barbarians have a delegation at Central Control, the largest organization within the Vesper Facility.
Related Species: Although it is almost certain that other large monkeys and apes were able to escape into the industrial wilds of the Vesper Facility, none have achieved the same level of success as the Barbarian. The Uakari (Cacajao calvus, often referred to as Memory Men), despite possessing a high level of intelligence, does not enjoy the wide distribution that Barbarians do. They are, instead, confined mainly to a few large multi-species hubs.


Artwork is © *MoonsongWolf
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