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The Benzenite were a humanoid species originating from the planet Benez'ahn in the Beta Quadrant. They have been a member of the Federation since 2337. Commander Amorin of the border cutter USS Silverfin is among one of the few Benzenite to leave their homeworld. (Border Cutter Silverfin)
They are a tall race, with few below 1.6 meters. Their natural environment was a thin atmosphere, made of gasses that were toxic to most other species, as well as being able to survive in a vaccuum for brief periods. Living deep in tunnels and caverns had affected their eyesight and left them sensitive to most light spectrums.
In order to live off of their homeworld, Benzenite have to wear a special breather mask that supplies them with the mix of gasses they need to survive, goggles to save their delicate eyesight from harsh lighting, and must undergo a series of treatments designed to strengthen their skeletal structure and musculature (so as to remain upright in standard M Class gravity). These treatments can only be undertaken when they reach the age of 21 and require a full year to complete, they are also painful and uncomfortable, which was why not many undertook them.
Their skin was thick and varied in colour from lilac to sky-blue to teal, though there was no racial or regional explanations for the different colouring. They weren’t considered an attractive race (by any other species) and with the breather in place their facial expressions were hard to read. They have bulbous cranial formations on the sides and backs of their heads (which allow them to navigate by a form or sonar, like a dolphin’s melon), these formations were slightly smaller on females (the only physical difference between the two sexes) though no less effective. They also have four fleshy breathing tubes that come from their chin; two go to roughly where a human's ears were located, whilst the other two were connected to their sternum.
The Benzenite civilisation developed underground, for the most part, where they were offered protection from fierce storms that could last for months on the surface, as well as having a more readily available food supply beneath the planets barren surface.
Despite joining the United Federation of Planets in 2337 few have left their homeworld due to the medical treatment they must undergo in order to survive in standard M Class environments. As of the beginning of 2378, only around twelve had entered Starfleet and shown to be suited to various fields.
They were a very curious race, inquisitive about their surroundings and other people around them. Despite this curiosity, they prefer to utilise their own ships to venture out into space. The treatments they must undergo to survive in a standard M Class environment put many off from a life in Starfleet or away from Benez’ahn.