Species: Aerha(i)

Name - Aerha (EYR-hah; plural Aerhai)

Home World - Aerhan

Temperament - Generally good-natured, even-tempered, friendly. They've made a lot of allies and truces with alien races; they're easy-going but not push-overs, and they seem to have found a balance that works well.

Culture - Matriarchal, but not to the point of sexism. Females are generally regarded as more intelligent and more perceptive than males, whereas males are physically tougher and often valued for their pragmatism.

Habitat - Aerhai are quite hardy creatures and can live in a wide variety of places without technology to supplement them; they withstand fairly extreme cold and tropical heat well, though the driest of deserts is unkind to their physiology. With technology, they can live in cities just about anywhere - they like forested areas with plenty of water best, though, if they're being rural.

Technology - Aerhai are very technologically advanced, at least matching and possibly exceeding Olashi-level tech. Being wholly quadrupedal, their spacecraft and atmoscraft are designed with controls and the like set into the floor or along the bottoms of the walls; they pilot with the use of a VR system and a specially-designed couch to support their bodies for prolonged flights. They can go into what they call nullspace, faster-than-lightspeed - a trick even Olashi have yet to manage. They have their homeworld and a few tentative colonies on other worlds that seem hospitable, but as advanced and well-educated as they are, there are still a great many rural settlements where the most advanced technology, beyond that used for education and communication, is plumbing for irrigation.

Height/Length - Probably around 5 feet high at the shoulder, males a bit taller and much broader than females. Length? Their tails are usually twice their torso-length, so from nose to tailtips, around 16-20 feet.

Physical Description - Aerhai are large, powerfully-built, thick-skinned quadrupedal felines. Their pelts are thick, glossy, and generally well-kept; they can be a wide range of natural colors (reddish, browns, greys, black, white, etc) and almost any pattern or combination of patterns. Physically powerful and swift, Aerhai retain their athletic capabilities from millenia spent as intelligent predators climbing to the top of the food chain on their homeworld. The distinction between genders is a noticeable one; females are smaller, more slender, and tend to be more agile and swift, whereas males are bulkier, stronger, and more enduring. Aerhai, while verymuch felines, have handpaws instead of normal forepaws; their toes are elongated and jointed like human hands, but still thick and not capable of delicate movements - not with their curving, semi-retractable claws. They also have thick manes, male and female alike, which can be cut and styled in a variety of ways for aesthetic purposes. Their tails are about twice as long as their torso, strong and flexible, and split into about a half-dozen tailtips, each about a foot long - these tailtips are velvet-furred, delicate, and prehensile; tools for deft work, used in writing and in piloting. Aerhai wear no clothing; the males have mostly internal genitalia, and the females have no visible genitalia when not nursing.

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