Yahg have four pairs of eyes, each designed to track and predict the movements of prey. A keen sensitivity to movement and light allows the yahg to easily read the body language of any species, making it almost impossible to lie to a yahg.
The yahg also possess a muscular body, towering over other races, which provides them considerable physical strength and agility. They have scaly, partially armored skin ranging from red through brown to green-grey, a triangular mouth adorned with sharp teeth, two robust horns and an organ beneath the chin that detects electrical energy fields. Their hands each have three fingers which include a thumb, as well as three toes on each foot.
The Prothean Javik claims that the yahg were smaller during his cycle 50,000 years ago.
Yahg skin is thick, offering protection against myriad environments and the defences of prey. Their musculature and bone structure are pronounced, and their frames support great bulk; their skin thickens in many areas, becoming heavy and unyielding. Bony platelets are scattered across the more relatively vulnerable areas, with keratin covering many additional regions. As yahg age, these plates take on an ever more pronounced 'rigid' quality, eventually seeming to form sheaths that may appear exoskeletal.
Yahg mothers regurgitate meat for their infants; the partially-digested food contains useful enzymes and bacterial symbiotes, which traditional biological lore and modern science have augmented considerably.
Many yahg spend a great deal of time following the rise and fall of the powerful in other states, of which there are many. Entire series have been produced - what might be called "reality holovision" - following the lives and careers of the powerful. Other common past-times include hunting, whether from need or for sport, as well as a variety of popular sporting leagues and events. Parnack posseses numerous game reserves, breeding programs, and zoos to preserve species which would otherwise be extinct as a result of increasing yahg population, and many yahg spend time visiting such places for both education and inspiration. The wealthy may purchase particularly rare or dangerous specimens for the sole purpose of private hunts, competitions, and other such events, many of which are televised.
The human game 'hide and seek' is nearly identical to a game played by yahg of all ages, the name of which can be written as dh'khrlsk. In this game, the hunted has the option of successfully ambushing a pursuer, removing them from the game, and particularly skilled yahg may prove victorious even as the hunted.
Yahg mouths are more developed than most and capable of producing sounds other species cannot, which makes translation a difficult matter, and has ever since first contact. Most commonalities are in words which themselves originate in sounds used in nature; for example, many yahg words for ‘no’ and other negative responses are onomatopoetic sounds of pain or distress. These are recognizable as such by most yahg, whether or not they can otherwise communicate verbally. Yahg languages developed out of natural requirement and rarely contain more than fifty thousand words, one of the reasons many yahg on Parnack are quickly adopting the languages of other races. Batarian standard is proving particularly popular.
Yahg greetings vary greatly depending where on Parnack the yahg is from. Universally accepted is the very simple maxim of 'be obvious'. Greetings appropriate for most species will be recognized as such by many modern yahg, especially given the increasing proliferation of multi-species media on Parnack. Yahg can detect falsehood without difficulty.Their senses are fine-tuned, and even with a species they've never encountered before they can detect the changes in physiology and body language, if not the exact meaning of such. If these changes accompany a statement that seems in any way hesitant or suspect, the connection is not difficult to make. Scent, movement, sound, and language patterns are all painfully obvious.
Multiple city-states dot the yahg homeworld. These city-states developed primarily out of a single tribe, which lends them a long history of competition, as well as conflict and dominance asserted one way or the other. That's not to imply that each city-state is inhabited only by one extended family, as they have naturally incorporated others as underlings (initially), and in many cases these others would eventually take power. Yahg society is almost naturally fluid when it comes to government, which hinders their progress. Combine this with regular warfare between city-states and coalitions of states, constant corporate espionage and violent takeovers, and it's easy to see why such a frightfully intelligent race hasn't progressed further, faster. Still, while yahg society is fiercely competitive, there’s also a great deal of information sharing and interaction, even between what might be considered traditional rivals. The inventor or developer of a new technology is well within their rights to apply it to their goals, but relying on techniques or devices provided by others without your rivals having that same opportunity is frowned upon as it may lead to the inferior party gaining dominance, hindering the entire species.
Yahg are almost incapable of recognizing a non-yahg as truly superior. As such, their figures of worship are other yahg who represented the ideal, rather than supernatural or mystical beings. One legendary yahg, Khaskadahg, killed some gods and stole their weapons, only to ascend to the heavens to fight them on their own turf. This is likely a half-remembered alien visit; probably a ship landed, local yahg killed them, then one of the yahg worked out how to fly their ship and left the planet with it, never to return. In all likelihood he promptly flew it into the sun (their obvious celestial dwelling place). Modern yahg do sometimes reference the gods, depending on tribe or custom of origin, but these gods are not placed higher than yahg; indeed, more often they are subordinate to the yahg heroes who bested them. To find favour with remaining gods is to dominate, not to serve.
First contact between the yahg and the Citadel Council was a disaster. Unfortunately, the yahg perceived the Council ambassadors’ attitudes and behaviour - presenting themselves as equal individuals instead of subordinates - as a sign of contempt, and attacked and massacred the entire delegation. Immediately following the incident, the Council severed all contact with the yahg and declared Parnack off-limits. The Council maintained that the yahg’s aggression and obsession with control make them poorly suited to integrate with the galactic community.
The expansion of CDEM to include Parnack was necessitated by the yahgs' completion of their first self-propelled spacecraft, in the hopes that a controlled entry into the galactic community might permit both the yahg and the galaxy at large to become accustomed to one another prior to full integration. CDEM-PIET forces in the area are presently minimal, but are expected to grow as the krogan assume responsibility for their own defense and CDEM presence within the Krogan DMZ becomes superfluous.
Similarly to the rules governing the Krogan DMZ, all vessels entering the Yahg DMZ will be subject to searches at any time and for any reason. Rules regarding permitted technology in the Yahg DMZ are even stricter than those formerly governing the krogan; merchants wishing to trade with the yahg are required to apply for a license to do so, the fees from which will go towards maintaining and expanding CDEM’s presence in the Yahg DMZ. Licensed merchants are required to dock at the CDEM station to unload their goods for inspection, and all transactions will take place on the station itself for the protection of the traders and the yahg alike. Proscribed goods include weapons and weapon components, vehicle schematics and vehicle components, chemical and biological agents excluding medigel and omnigel, invasive species’, and all substances presently banned in Citadel space including but not limited to Red Sand, Minagen, and other intoxicants. Vessels approaching Parnack without explicit prior CDEM-PIET permission will be subject to lethal force and the penalty for smuggling proscribed goods remains death by spacing. Notably left off the proscription list is communications equipment, in the hope that interaction between the yahg and the galaxy at large will accelerate the integration process. Concerns that the yahg may use this technology to acquire otherwise proscribed schematics and information have been raised, but Citadel Council representatives were quick to provide assurance that all yahg communications would be routed through a single CDEM-controlled communications buoy and subject to heavy censorship.
Under the charter, yahg are permitted to travel in limited numbers to the CDEM-PIET station for trade or diplomatic purposes, where they may also apply for an emigration license on an individual basis. CDEM-PIET officers of multiple species then administer suitability tests to determine whether the yahg in question is fit for integration into galactic society. If successful, the yahg is assigned a trained integration specialist for a period of one year to ensure that their transition into galactic society goes smoothly. Should the application be rejected, the yahg in question may reapply after a period of five years at which time another set of suitability tests will be required. Any yahg permitted to join galactic society will be expected to behave as a model citizen, and any criminal activity will result in immediate deportation to Parnack and a ten-year ban on re-submitting integration applications.
Numerous civil rights groups issued statements in response to this, almost universally condemning the severe restrictions imposed on the yahg. None were more vocal than the Center for Galactic Equality, which was quick to point out that no such measures have ever been taken towards a species without first fighting an intergalactic war. Other condemnations focused on the censorship of communication between the yahg and the galaxy at large, as well as the denial of technology which could be used to improve the quality of life on Parnack. Several mercantile groups requested an official review of the trade conditions in the Yahg DMZ, arguing that a license fee to trade with the yahg combined with the license for relay travel is double-taxing and therefore illegal under galactic economic law, adding that even if deemed legal, the current arrangement gives large corporations an unfair advantage over independent traders and entrepreneurs. Economic think-tanks within the Vol Protectorate recommended disbanding CDEM and instead contracting Yahg DMZ patrols out to reliable security firms to free up more credits for reconstruction, a proposal to which the Blue Suns and Eclipse were quick to lend their support.
Yahg of Note
- Bobert (shudder)
(See also: Yahg (list))
Threads of Note
Thread For Total Peace And Non-Violence: Initial reactions to the yahg arriving on CDN.
Ignore the Other Yahg: Competition between two of the new yahg merchants soon rears its head. Customers must choose their allegiance.
Errors in Representation: Analysing yahg movie appearances.