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Physical Description
Humanoids evolved from feline-like ancestors, swift and intense hunters designed to chase and bring down prey.  They are predominantly hairless, with hair long hair growin around their chin, ears, and the back of their heads. Their ears are mounted high on their skull and are hairy and pointed. They have snouted faces, with large noses and wide nostrils designed to pull in large gasps of air during a chase and maximizing air exchange to aid in regulating their body temperatures. They have thick chests and wide shoulders, a large rib-cage containing particularly large and powerful  lungs and heart. Their blood contains an exceptionally high ratio of red blood cells, which allows it to carry more oxygen during periods of exertion but also leaves them somewhat vulnerable to disease because of their lower ratio of white blood cells. They have long, powerfully-muscled legs, and thin waists. They have short, powerful arms that end in four-fingered hands that have two bony, opposite claw-thumbs designed for digging in and holding on.  

Rafers possess supra-adrenal glands which produce large bursts of adrenaline and other catecholamine hormones. An involuntary supra-adrenal dump will give Rafers the burst of incredible speed, energy, strength, and focus necessary to run down and ride down their prey. After several minutes, when the burst wears off, the Rafer will crash and suffer lethargy and depression while their body chemistry normalizes itself.

Rafers have exceptional eyesight and depth perception and can see in very low-light conditions. Their sense of smell is good, being aided somewhat by large nostrils and noses. Their hearing is exceptional and layered, in that they can detect and define individual frequency content in a complex noise... they can discern and distinguish the grinding and squeakings of individual gears, for example, in a complex gadget.

Personality and Motivation
To other races, Rafers seem unpredictable. They have a wide variety of personality traits and are often subject to hormonal mood swings. The bonds and structure of society have, on one side, allowed the Rafers to evolve into an interstellar race. On the other hand, it has placed them in a situation where their supra-adrenal glands are under-utilized, which leads to a natural chemical imbalance. Rafers can appear lazy and fickle, listless, or bored. tend to be nimble and fickle, proud and formal. Rafers tend to be seekers of adventure, exploration, and conflict. When their supra-adrenal glands are not pumping, when they are not hunting, they can seem unmotivated and almost lazy. The Rafers, however, really are exceptionally fast thinkers. They are creative and adaptable, fearless and thrive under pressure.

IIf the supra-adrenal glands are not used for extended periods of time, Rafers are subject to a variety of diseases. SAGA is supra-adrenal gland atrophy. Under-utilized supra-adrenal glands simply stop producing adrenaline at all, leaving the Rafer apathetic, emotionless, and depressed. Only through a regimen of medical drugs and an aggressive routine of extreme excitement over an extended period of time has any possibility of refiring the supra-adrenal glands. 

ARS, or Adrenal Rage Syndrome, is another possible result of an unstimulated supra-adrenal gland. Without the occasional adrenal dump their bodies are designed to experience, Rafers' brain chemistry may alter itself to compensate. It will begin to randomly and inappropriately trigger adrenal dumps, causing unpredictable violent outbursts and erratic behaviour. The ARS victim may compulsively seek out extremely dangerous situations to stimulate adrenaline production, to a degree far beyond that of the typical Rafer love of thrill.

As society made life safer and more dull for Rafers, they began to seek out dangerous sports and activities as a method of stimulating their supra-adrenal glands and maintaining their mental and physical health. Dangerous thrill-sports became popular. Wars between groups and pack-states were fought for sport.

Fun and excitement became a sort of currency for the Rafers. Their general attitude is that death is an acceptable part of life, so long as your adrenaline is pumping at the time. It is shameful, a waste, to die in a quiet, relaxed state. They call their excited, adrenaline-charged state Syeikan, extol its virtues, and live for it. They call their quiet state Yan and endure it between opportunities to experience Syeikan. The adrenaline crash and depression that naturally occurs after Syeikan is called Kishta. The Rafers have a drug called seta-Syeikan,manufactured from the menjelip plant, that super-stimulates the supra-adrenal glands and drives them into a hyper-excited adrenalized state of ecstasy. Seta-syeikan is highly illegal in most Rafer pack-states as the users' glands will eventually lock "on", producing a steady and uncontrolled flow of hormones. The user is left in a disoriented and violent state until their glands burn out, leaving them emotionless, apathetic, and unable to think properly.

Origin and Evolution
Rafers evolved from cat-like hunter/chasers on the planet of Coventbourne in the Twilight sector. Coventbourne is a hot, dryish planet. 60% of its surface is covered by a single, large continent. The center receives little rainfall and is a huge, brutally dry desert. The west coast receives east-moving weather systems that deposit large amounts of rain in the shadow of high inland mountains. The north, south, and east coasts are moderate and temperate. The end result is a thick ring of life between the desert and the sea. The Rafers evolved in the flat plains between the thick forest and deep desert. At night, they would live in the tree-lines along the edge of the plains, climbing for shelter and protection. During the day, they were swift, nimble hunters that would stalk and run down their prey on the flat plains. Their long, powerful legs and hyper-adrenal glands allowed them to outrun their prey and leap onto them, while their short powerful arms and claws would grab hold. Their prey would tire quickly with the weight of a Rafer on its back, then easily bought down.

Rafers were originally solitary hunters. Once they brought down their prey, they were often chased away by larger predators or packs of scavengers. They eventually determined it was more effective to hunt in packs and eat in shifts, with some members protecting kill while others ate. In packs, a few members were suddenly able to drive herds of prey into ambush by many Rafers. The hunt became systematic, social, and effective.  Gradually, Rafers began to use primitive tools, constructing chutes to force prey towards the most effective ambush points and using primitive weapons to more effectively protect their kills. As the chutes became more and more elaborate and effective, shelters and towns began to form around them and the chute system became kind of a "free range farming". Rafers began actively killing off the predators that competed with them for their food sources or tried to drive them off their kills. They began raising crops that would attract their prey and they began building traps to expand the types of prey available to them. With a plentiful supply of prey, they would discover it was fun to chase and mount them, riding for fun rather than food. This would be a major shift in thinking for the Rafers that would gradually allow the Rafers to domesticate work and recreational animals, rather than just eat everything in sight.

Rafers made a slow and leisurely trek into space at first. To most Rafers, science is not fun or exciting. It took many years before the first crude spacecraft was produced. Once it was built, however, everyone wanted a ride. As fast as they could be made, Rafers were filling spacecraft and being blasted into space. While their technology was crude and dangerous and the end goals somewhat impractical, Rafers flocked to space for no reason other than the adrenaline high. Any acceptable moons or planets within the Coventbourne system were quickly dotted with domed colonies, immense game preserves full of imported life the Rafers could hunt and eat. .

Star-faring Years
Like many of the races in the Twilight sector, the Rafers' introduction to other races in the universe would come courtesy of the Vrudok. In the late Archaic times, the Vrudok would stumble across the Coventbourne system and determine that there were easy pickings. The Czystalo Klekken would send a fleet of ships to conquer the young race. Things went poorly for the Rafers at first, many of their domed colonies being demolished by the Vrudok who expected a swift surrender. As it turned out, the Rafers were unconcerned at the thought of their own demise, in fact all the more thrilled by the adrenaline rush and willing to fight to the last. After enough encounters, the Rafers would determine that, while the Vrudok had technologies far superior to their own, they were incredibly undermatched when it came to close-in fighting. Rafer scientists would quickly develop bullet-like boarding craft that were simply fired from massive railguns, taking the fight directly to the Vrudok. The boarding craft would smash through the hulls of the Vrudok ship and a flood of enraged Rafers would tear the ship to pieces.  The Vrudok were driven from the system, deciding the Rafers weren't worth the effort.

The Rafers would end up with a dozen or so relatively high tech ships, about half in functional condition, to reverse engineer. In exchange, many of the Rafers best warriors had been killed or burned out on seta-syeika. The Rafers had also learned that there were other races in the universe and their cultural personality demanded they go fight them all, just for fun. They would quickly begin to rebuild their own system colonies and establish new domed colonies in the Uppoyen system.

In mid-Antiquity, Rafers exploration ships outbound from Uppoyen discover the Ptatl in the Qetlec system. What ensured could be called a war if one was generous. The Rafer boarding tactics that proved so successful against the Vrudok were much less so against the physically more able Ptatl. The Ptatl had superior technology and a longer history in space. After three or four brief encounters, the Ptatl drove the Rafers back to Coventbourne. Ptatl forces were dispatched and occupied the capital city. Having no need of the primitive colony and not believing in captive labour, the Ptatl then just packed up and left, having made their point. The Ptatl still hold a certain distain and distrust towards the Rafers, though the Rafers don't tend to hold grudges when it comes to simple entertainment like war. A lot of damage had been done to the Rafers' infrastructure and military. Like a Rafer on an adrenaline crash, they would need to sit quietly for a bit to rebuild and regrow.

In late Antiquity, Kayyan exploratory forces from Izwan would stumble on the Coventbourne system. The Rafers would leap to conflict, attacking and destroying the exploration ships. While the Kayyans were superior in technology and tactic, the Rafers were energetic, fearless, and aggressive. Where the Rafers had spent years resting and rebuilding, the Kayyans had been exhausted in wars against the Vrudok and themselves, with Toqkwen's War of Succession. While victory was attainable for the Kayyans, there was a great deal of debate on Izwan as to whether it was worth it. Many in the Kayyan military were impressed with the ferocious, fearless nature of the Rafers.

It was Emperor Rasanya Amilim Algomena who devised the idea of a hostile alliance. From prisoners and databases captured during the war, the Kayyans were aware of, and fascinated by, the Rafers' casual, game-like view of warfare. Emperor Rasanya would send a massive invasion force to the Uppoyen colony, seiaing it quickly and with few casualties to either side. The Uppoyenate population was given the choice of rotting in internment camps or joining the Kayyans as equals. Uppoyen seized the opportunity to join with the more powerful Kayyans and toussle with their countrymen in Coventbourne. Preparations for the war against Coventbourne inluded a great deal of training and indoctrination of the Rafers, teaching them how other races saw war as destructive and devastating, how they saw loss of life as tragic. Without another battle being fought, an envoy would run from Uppoyen to Coventbourne, consisting of Kayyans and Rafers together. When the envoy had plead its case, the Coventboranians were shocked and somewhat dismayed at the stress they had placed on other races while they played at war. They would learn about alliance from the Kayyans and form a strong bond, learning and trading and agreeing to defend each other from mutually hostile races like the Vrudok.

The Rafer government is basically an organizer and administrator harnessing the will and actions of the populace. The government is basically organized around Pack-states, generally a major city and surrounding municipalities. A municipal Mayor represents the local populace, organizing and directing them when they come to him with an initiative. The Municipal government basically channels the energy of the mob into useful, organized action. Mayors are elected by the populace from within the ranks of the Municipal government every two years.

The Mayors meet monthly in a Federal Parliament to discuss and co-ordinate their projects. They are overseen, assisted, and organized by a President.

The Federal Government is run by a President that the Mayors of the Pack-States elect every two years, on the year that mayoral elections are not held. The President is generally elected from within the ranks of the Federal government. The President is responsible for taking the ideas and initiatives presented by the Mayors and providing the guidance and organization to bring them to fruition.

The Federal and Municipal governments both maintains staffs of government Facilitators. Actual governmental organizations like armies, businesses, and road construction crews form spontaneously by members of the populace who band together and approach the government with a plan and a goal. These organizations, called Combines, are basically civil extensions of the government and are run by members within themselves with the assistance of a governmental Facilitator. The government organizes and negotiates between the Combines.

Both the Federal and Municipal governments are primarily administrative and organizational in function. The people approach the government with a general need and course of action and the government assists in realizing it. In general, government is perceived by the Rafers as dull and boring. Those who chose to join the government are often either lazy and unmotivated or corrupt and looking to garner personal power or pleasure. They are often self-centered types and the government itself is often inefficient, corrupt, and slow.

Food Sources
Bukan - Small, swift herbivore mammal. Grazes and burrows on plains.
.Dak - Long-legged, swift herbivore mammal. Grazes in herds on plains.
Masahayan - Long legged herbivore mammal, smaller than a dak. Grazes primarily in forest, sometimes on plains. Extremely quick and agile, difficult to catch and dangerous to ride down, as they tend to crash through the forest in panic, smashing any on-hanging Rafers into the trees and foliage. A tasty delicacy.
Mengang - a colourful, highly plumed forest bird. Their nests are easily reached and their eggs are a decent snack but the difficult-to-catch bird is a really tasty treat.
Taup - Large, slow reptiles that graze in small groups on the plains. They're a staple diet when better meat is hard to catch.
Sebakabuka - small, plentiful, hard-shelled insects that swarm through the forest and plains. Provide a constant and unyielding high-protein snack food.
Mandwan - aggressive, mid-sized pack scavengers. Historically, these were a threat to the Rafers, as they would drive them away from their fresh kills.