Whaling in the Rangi

From Beacon Space

The great megafauna, or Tahora, of the Rangi and Sector-West are part of the lifeblood of the Tahora Whai. Creatures like the Teuthemi Leviathans (aka Great Tahora) provided the people of Dynae with the resources to endure hardships and the devastation of their world; not to mention the inspiration for the Vāk cybernetics. Whaling has long been practiced in this region of space, even before the genesis of the Tahora Whai.

To the Whai, these megafauna are all noble creatures, and to waste them would be a travesty in their eyes. To kill them for sport or profit is anathema. A healthy population of voidborne megafauna is necessary for the survival and continuance of the Tahora Whai. Management of the Rangi involves the protection of breeding populations of megafauna in sanctuaries and reserves, keeping populations in check through harvesting, and the elimination of the threat posed by violent beasts to the people of the Rangi by either shepherding them to managed reserves or defeating them if necessary. The Whai serve as wardens and keepers of the space that the Whales inhabit.

Bone, teeth, chitin, skin, blood, blubber, meat, offal, and other organs are harvested from the great beings. These resources are utilized in all parts of Whai life:

  • Whalebone is used as a construction material for ships and settlements
  • Teeth and chitin, along with bones, are used in weapons and armor
  • Whale blood, blubber, meat, and offal are used in various foodstuffs, with the blood of these creatures holding a strong symbolic power with the Whai
  • Organs of the Teuthemi Leviathans are used in biomechanical relay facilities to amplify their communication technology

There are few, if any, distinct “whaling ships” of the Whai as most vessels are able to wear many hats. Weapons and tools that are used in raids and piracy have their use in whaling, and likewise for the reverse. Harpoons, tethers, nets, cloaking devices, fighter craft, and even energy and mass weapons are used to track, corral, and/or kill megafauna. Tame void fauna, such as the Mōkai, of Teuthem are also utilized in several stages of the whaling process. Many stations used by the Whai do, however, focus primarily on Whaling. The station of Hvalakókari in Teuthem is inhabited year-round as a homebase for whalers of the Tahora Graveyard. Hvalakókari is seen as the center of cutting-edge research into and the ranching of the local Teuthemi Leviathans. Refueling station Dave, in the Kuafu system, likewise provides supplies and respite for whalers in the west through a network of tender ships.

No grand hunts, as seen in the Agumalan lodges, are called against the megafauna of the sector by the Whai. These great creatures are respected as fellow travelers of the stars. The most famous void creature, the White Whale, is a notable example of this relationship: The Whai have endeavored to protect this noble creature against the lodges’ quest and guide it to a sanctuary over Saarinen for protection and to develop a greater understanding of this unique individual.