Skurid 2


The skurid are a highly reclusive pre-spaceflight race native to the planet Korod. Long isolated from other species, they have recently begun to receive overtures from the salarians due to their planet's abundance in an extremely rare heat-absorbing mineral. This has led to the salarians attempting to "uplift" the skurid, drawing protests from others concerned about the impact that sudden exposure to other species might have on them.


Physically, the skurid could best be described as resembling a large humanoid anteater. Standing upright, the average skurid is about five feet tall, however, they spend most of their time on all fours due to the low ceilings of their tunnels. Their limbs are long and skinny, but very sinewy. Their hands and feet are small, but their fingers and toes are long and extremely flexible, with sharp claws, enabling them to travel along walls and ceilings with ease. Their bodies are mostly hairless, save for a shock of black hair on the tops of their heads. Their eyes are small and solid black. The head is long and thin, with a long tongue.


Having developed on a planet with almost no sunlight and a toxic atmosphere, the skurid spend most of their lives deep within tunnels and caves, subsisting on a diet of insects and small plants.

When threatened, the skurid secrete a pheremone that causes anxiety and decreased vision in most creatures (including the skurid themselves.) If the threat does not leave, the skurid will almost always expectorate upon them; their saliva contains a concentrated dose of the pheromone, resulting in an anxiety attack and temporary blindness. It should be noted that the skurid themselves are not immune to the effects of this pheromone and have a great deal of difficulty in controlling their secretion of it, resulting in constant vision problems and hyper-awareness.


When the salarians first encountered the skurid, they believed them to be a non-sapient species due to their seemingly feral nature, but closer examine has begun to shed some light on their way of life. Unable to control the secretion of their panic-causing pheromone, the individual skurid sees almost every other living organism as a threat to them. They tend to live far apart from one another and distrust collectives, only coming together during the mating season, birth and funeral ceremonies, and at the conclusion of the annual "Sunward Pilgrimage".


Whether the skurid have any formal religion is as yet unknown, but the salarians who have visited them have noted that they possess a few traditions that hold their society together. Chief among these is their worship of the yil-hra, the enormous korodium pipes that run throughout the planet's subsurface, carrying thermal energy from the Crucible at the planet's core to the surface, where it would have provided power to the planet's long-forgotten architects. Having never seen the terminal ends of these pipes, the skurid believe that they contain the souls of both the dead and the unborn, and it is considered sacrilege to destroy one of them (of course, destroying or attempting to destroy the pipes is not recommended even without the risk of being killed by enraged skruid, as it tends to cause catastrophic explosions.)

Since it is believed that the soul can only enter or exit the body through contact with one of these pipes, the beginning and the end of life are some of the only times the skurid actually work together, in order so that their children receive souls at birth and their ancestors give up their souls at death. Children who do not touch a yil-rha within minutes of their birth are believed to have stolen their mothers' souls and are locked away in special cells; the unlucky mother in such cases is killed out of fear that she will become a cyul (the skurid equivalent of a vampire), forever stealing the souls of others. Similarly, the bodies of those who die without touching a yil-rha at the last moment of their lives also become cyuls - their souls have rotted, but they are not dead, and thus, logically, they will try and steal a new soul.

Another major part of skurid spiritual life is the hrun-grel (roughly translated as "sunward pilgrimage"), a yearly two-month event where all skurid travel towards the Crucible to feed the "proper" dead into the ancient crematoria near the planet's core.

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