Challenge #02566-G009: All About Where You Stand

in #fiction3 months ago


I want to see a Havenworlder from a high grav planet. Dense and tough by necessity from the environment, but with absolutely nothing dangerous in to it in its home planet. No rough terrain to fall down, plentiful food without any toxins that effect it, gentle weather that never bothers it, etc. -- Anon Guest

Gravity is usually necessary for life to evolve. Most life comes to become on planets, with a rare few becoming in lower gravity environments that are also sealed against the greater vacuum of space. More often than not, life occurs on a planet of One Standard Gravity[1] or thereabouts. There are many more worlds in the universe with higher than One Standard Gravity. Statistically speaking, some of those are Havenworlds.

Of the Heavyworld species, the most famous intelligent species is the Gaux. They are not Havenworlders. Their struggle to the stars included the Two Standard Gravity environment that was their homeworld. THey have been described as looking like "the unlikely progeny of a centaur and a rhinoceros." Humans sometimes refer to them as "the headless centaur ones". They are a species from the highest known gravity environment.

Heavyworlders are less likely to follow the anthropoid[2] model. They are more likely to be quadrupedal. They are more likely to have robust frames. They are less likely to be Havenworlders. That said, there are statistical anomalies everywhere. Picture in your mind a more muscular variant of the hippo, roughly the size of a domestic pig. In the place of an animal's head, the stub of a torso rises up in something that was not quite a head, but served the purpose thereof.

Heavyworlders tend to be hexapodal. Four legs bear the brunt of the body's weight, and two other limbs become the manipulating limbs that are eventually turned to tool use. Depending on the increment of gravity, some may even resemble other bipedal species. They look heavy, they look tough, and they are frequently mistaken for Deathworlders.

Heavy-grav Havenworlders are fairly rare, so it's an easy mistake to make. When a being sees a heavily muscular, stout lifeform that looks like they could barrel through most fortifications without a livesuit and emerge on the other side in a cloud of rubble with little in the way of personal injury. In lower gravities, this might be true. In Standard Gravity, they are stronger than they would be if they were fighting against the forces of their origin.

Tenkari get this a lot. They, like many Havenworlders, sort of sauntered vaguely towards civilisation and from there to the stars. People learning that they are more on the fragile side than they look are more than a little disturbed.

"But you don't look like a Havenworlder," protested Gihaash's current shield - Human Dun.

"Many Havenworlders don't," said Tenkari Gihaash. "Every Tenkari, for example."

"Well. Yes," said Human Dun. "Obviously. But... as a heavy Havenworlder... you'd be something of a Deathworlder to the lighter-world peoples?"

"Perhaps," speculated Gihaash, "the quality of being a Deathworlder is also relative. Rather like time and distance."

There were roughly ten minutes of quiet from Human Dun. "Okay, now you're going to have to rock me to sleep tonight..."

[1] Ten Standard Distance Units per second per second falling speed.

[2] A less egocentric version of 'humanoid'.

[Image (c) Can Stock Photo / Rastan]

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