User Tools

Site Tools


Athrak, son of Prabanta

Sister: Sharee
(surnames are not necessary on a ship full of relatives)

Physical description

A boy of about 16 years of age, very thin and bony, although not malnourished. Pale skin, pale red hair cut short, striking blue eyes. Almost appears an albino, but not quite. About 5ft tall. Wears well-kept coveralls and soft shoes. Tool belt and bag containing the tools of the engineer's trade, all lovingly well-kept. Wears a small data crystal on a silver chain beneath his shirt.

Athrak's sister Sharee is very similar in appearance, with the same red hair, worn long and the same blue eyes. Wears the same uniform coveralls. They could be twins, but for the two-three years separating them.


Strong sense of family / community - easily makes commitments to others, and expects equal commitment from them. Trustful of strangers because family / community was trustworthy. Respectful of authority - command heirarchy of ship - except when commands go against common sense or doctrine. Always curious and eager for new experiences. Driven by the ultimate goal of finding Paradise.

Sharee is very shy and relies on her brother for most things. Athrak has a hidden streak of anger which he rarely lets out - this is rage bottled up from the stupidity of the crew which allowed his Ship to be destroyed (see history below).

Personal History

Athrak and Sharee grew up in deep space, on board a ship which had housed nine generations since being launched. The community came to see the ship as a deity and formed a close-knit religion around it where routine maintenance tasks became religious rituals.

At one time in his youth Athrak 'made the Ship angry' by incorrectly performing a Ritual of Maintenance. He was scarred by a burst plasma line. He doesn't talk about this incident much, considering it 'just retribution' for his mistake. He still bears terrible burn scars to the torso from this incident - they were not permitted to heal properly as a lifelong reminder of his commitment to the Ship and its Crew.

Athrak and Sharee grew up in a time when the religion was in decline. Many of the Rituals of Maintenance were neglected or even forgotten, except by a few people. Athrak's father, Prabanta, was one who held to the old beliefs in the face of increasing apathy. The ship's Captain in Athrak's childhood was a kindly old man, but when he died he was replaced by a fiery youth who was inclined to disbelieve in the doctrine of the Ship. The access codes to the old Records were all but forgotten at the time, but Prabanta still held a copy of the Key - a small crystal on a silver chain which contained the codes.

Prabanta began to quarrel with the rest of the ship's Crew, who believed that the Rituals of Maintenance were just empty words and had no real power. Prabanta (and Athrak) knew better - that the ship must be worshipped in order for it to protect the Crew against the Void, but they were more and more ostracised by the unbelievers. Finally the Captain forbade them from performing the Rituals.

As a result, the condition of the ship quickly declined. At a time when Athrak was about to come of age, the ship suffered a catastrophic system failure. His father was killed by an angry mob of crew, who blamed him for the failure.

Athrak recovered the Key before consigning his father's body to the Void. Although it is no longer any good for anything, it still contains the data structures required for accessing the old Ship's systems, and it is Athrak's most prized possession.

When life support failed, Athrak and Sharee tearfully abandoned their Ship and took refuge in an escape pod. Because of the education they had received from their father, they were the only ones on board ship who knew of their existence.

Religious beliefs

There is an active deity and a passive deity. The active deity is the Ship. It is kind and supportive, but requires regular worship. The passive deity is the Void. It is malevolent and dangerous. The Ship protects the Crew from the dangers of the Void, and the Crew give thanks to the Ship in the form of Rituals of Maintenance. So long as the Rituals are performed, the Ship continues to protect the Crew. If the Rituals stop, the Ship fails and exposes the crew to the danger of the Void.

The vacuum of space in this philosophy is a real, tangible thing that is trying to get into the Ship. The Rituals of Maintenance are intended to keep the Void out. A hull breach means that the Void can get into the Ship, which is a Bad Thing.

The ultimate purpose of the Crew is to travel to Paradise. Originally this was probably a planet that the ship was supposed to colonise, but in the intervening years it became a teleological end-point for the endless drifting of the Ship. During the Voyage, it is the responsibility of the Crew to maintain the Ship and make sure that it delivers the Crew to Paradise intact.


From the Void we are born, to the Void we return.
The Ship is mother, the Ship is father, we are the Crew. Amen.
Praise the Ship for its protection.

The worst possible curse:
Space you!

roleplaying/campaign/nfl/nflathrak.txt · Last modified: 2013/03/18 21:52 by