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Epachan

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The Epachan (ɛpˈəchân) (both singular and plural reference to the species) are a Federation member race of sentient cephalopods. Invertebrate beings with four sucker-lined tentacles which cling to nearly any object or surface (including other beings), they are physically quick and versatile, and move via "cartwheeling" locomotion of their limbs in three dimensions.

Epachan lack eyes, ears and names in the traditional humanoid sense. They detect external objects through vibrations and smell. Their bodies are covered in pink, moist-looking skin resembling chewed bubblegum, marked by several small, round, milky-yellow "receptors", biological implants sporting plano-convex, opaque lenses. These receptors convey audiovisual information by augmenting and transforming light/sound signals into pheromones and sound-waves which the wearer "reads", allowing them to see/hear and identify others outside of their native environment. The receptors function as universal translators. Distributed across an Epachan's torso, these devices permit panocular vision (in all directions), tactically advantageous yet limited compared to binocular vision (involving light wavelengths Epachan cannot detect). Despite their limited "hearing", an Epachan's voice, rendered by the universal translator, possesses a rhythmic, musical quality with a distinct linguistic pattern. Epachan appreciate music as a form of communication above all others. To them music bears an almost other-dimensional mystique.

Custom is important to Epachan, especially members of royalty. Their government is a constitutional monarchy. They treat any new place or people they meet as a "first contact" situation, to be taken seriously and handled with care. Part of an Epachan greeting ritual involves tongue contact: An Epachan extends its tongue from a dorsal mouth to touch the tongue or equivalent organ of another being; combined with a release of pheromones, this triggers a chemical reaction in one or both parties, causing endorphins to be released (in species who have them), and a euphoric state ensues, usually only lasting a few seconds. This greeting has been known to cause orgasms in some humanoids. Among Epachan (and other compatible beings) it allows instantaneous, non-verbal communication through the transmission of biochemicals, more expedient than conventional speech. This "tongue contact" is reserved for the highest-ranking individuals or emergency situations, and is not used frequently, since Epachan view it with almost sexual importance.

Epachan are carnivorous. They rarely consume other sentients, yet consider it an honor to be devoured by one's friends or relatives when one dies. They are also genderless; how they procreate is, as yet, unrevealed. They typically guard their method of procreation as a cultural secret from outsiders. Special inoculations permit Epachan to survive in alien, off-world environments. They have their own navy, yet some serve in Starfleet. A former first officer of the UFS Arcadia hailed from this race. (Star Trek: Arcadia)

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