The hulking creatures known as the Jezzadeic live on the fringes of Alliance territory in the Cryus 3 star system of the Greater Magellanic Clouds. These mysterious beings have only recently been encountered operating within Alliance space, although relations were formalized between the Alliance and the Jezzadeic over a century ago. Jezzadeic possess strange matrix abilities that utilize many matrix types simultaneously. They can employ energy controlling, empathic, and healing power alike. However, the use of these powers is not without limitation. Jezzadeic usually generate their matrices onto an object, where it is stored until needed, rather than using them directly. This process is called “imprinting,” and the object that contains the matrix is called a Bi-Athon. Very few Jezzadeic have emigrated from their homeworld of Zygok and most of those who have, were primarily missionaries preaching the message that all things, living and non-living, originate from the same source. Other Jezzadeic pursue their interests in archeology or anthropology, common throughout the species, because of their religion. The species itself is slow to reproduce, limiting their overall numbers. The latest census information available to the Alliance Bureau of Population indicates that there are roughly only 150 million Jezzadeic. Approximately 2.5 million are thought to be operating in Alliance territory, with 75% of these holding the title of “Priests.” The average Jezzadeic would much rather be poking around an archeological dig somewhere or puttering in his or her workshop than wandering the streets of a crowded city, adding to the perception that few exist.
The Jezzadeic are Matrix Controllers, but unlike most matrix users, they specialize in enhancing inanimate objects, not in directly generating effects. For example, a Mutzachan might generate a Fire Blast to directly incinerate a target. A Jezzadeic would find an object, like a simple metal ring, and use his Life-Staff to imprint the ring with the Fire Blast matrix. Once imprinted, the ring would be referred to as a Bi-Athon. When confronted with an aggressor, the Jezzadeic could activate the ring, without having to spend any Power Points, causing the ring to instantaneously generate the stored Fire Blast against the Jezzadeic’s enemy. Only a Jezzadeic, or a Mutzachan using the Activation Energy matrix, can activate the matrix stored in a Bi-Athon.
As a result, most Jezzadeic are loaded down with artifacts, rings, headpieces, widgets, doo-dads, and thing-a-ma-bobs galore. If it wasn’t for their hulking nature, and somewhat artistic eye, they could often be mistaken for a walking junk-pile! A skilled observer can judge the social ranking of the Jezzadeic by the number, type, and configuration of the objects a Jezzadeic possesses.
All Jezzadeic carry a device called an Atohk, which means “Life-Staff” in the language of the Jezzadeic. The Atohk is usually a large staff but can be as small as a wand. The Atohk is the focus of the Jezzadeic’s matrix abilities, and they cannot create Bi-Athons without their Atohk. All Atohks are elaborately carved and ornamented with runes and hieroglyphs, which document the events of the Jezzadeic’s life. Matrices can be imprinted on the Life-Staff just like any other object.
Furthermore, the Jezzadeic may install modules into his or her Life-Staff to increase its capabilities mechanically. Finding a particular Bi-Athon on a walking junk pile can be difficult, and many Jezzadeic store their favorite Bi-Athons inside their Atohk. Bi-Athons stored in an Atohk take advantage of any modules installed in that Atohk, though Bi-Athons can be used normally when not stored in a Life-Staff.
To lose one’s Atohk is the highest form of disgrace. If the Life-Staff cannot be recovered, the Jezzadeic will be unable to generate further matrices, and will be stripped of any other talismans. If the Jezzadeic is a practicing priest, they must relinquish this title.
Jezzadeic start off with a set number of Power Points (PP) just like other species that have matrix control. Similarly, the number of Power Points the Jezzadeic possesses can increase over time. However, there are some significant differences between Jezzadeic and other Matrix Controllers. When a Jezzadeic spends Power Points to empower an object with a matrix, those Power Points are gone forever. They do not regenerate with rest like the Power Points of other Matrix Controllers. Fortunately a matrix generated by the Jezzadeic to create a Bi-Athon using his Power Points is permanent, though some restrictions on its use may exist (see individual Jezzadeic matrix descriptions). In addition, Jezzadeic do not fatigue when spending Power Points like other Matrix Controllers.
Zygok is governed by a theocracy known simply as the Elders of the People. All Jezzadeic are considered part of the Church. Most are lay clergy, and all members of the clergy are commonly referred to as “priests.” Higher ranks within the clergy include: Missionary, Shaper, Speaker, Crafter, and Elder. There are approximately two-dozen Jezzadeicc Elders universe wide. The Elders are the most revered of the species and are Matrix Controllers of great power. It is the Elders who resolve matters of importance and set standards for the rest. The lesser priests ensure decisions are carried out in the most methodical manner. Jezzadeic are creatures slow to action. All things must be thoroughly contemplated before choosing any course of action, lest one be brash and impetuous. Jezzadeic do not understand or accept most aggressive tactics or solutions to problems. It takes time to correctly assess any situation. One should never act hastily. Jezzadeic love deliberating the next plausible course of action, something that has caused great consternation to mercenary units operating under fire. The fact that people are dying does not mean that a decision should be reached quickly. A Jezzadeic would still suggest that everyone should discuss things for a while before acting! As a result, not a whole lot gets done quickly, and even sending out for lunch can take the Elders three or four hours!
Jezzadeicc culture is animistic, teaching that all objects contain some measure of life-energy. Thus, inanimate objects, from simple tools up to planets, are treated with respect. Immediately after signing a non-aggression treaty with the Alliance, the Jezzadeic Elders petitioned for rights to study and catalogue Alliance-controlled archaeological sites. The Jezzadeic sought to examine the artifacts and relics found there. With some reservation, the Alliance agreed, and the Jezzadeic oversaw archeological digs across the galaxies. These industrious creatures worked the sites with such efficiency and fervor that archaeology departments and mega-corporations all over the galaxies sought out their services on ARSAP teams. The Jezzadeic point to planetary histories such as Earth’s to show the foolishness of abusing the resources at hand. It is this belief that makes the Jezzadeic such superb craftsmen, for they believe that to put anything less than their full efforts into their work dishonors both the object and the creator. They call their system of beliefs simply “The Way”.
The Jezzadeic can trace their history back 15,000 years. Many of the traditions and rites they practice today date back nearly that far. The species first took to calling themselves Priests in roughly 11,000 B.C. The first creation of an Atohk is credited to the founder of the Way, a Jezzadeic female named Turanth. Her teachings were extrapolated upon, after her death, and a gifted few among the Priests were taught to imbue objects with some of their own life-energy, or Kah. This gave the objects fantastic powers, which the Jezzadeic then used to advance their own culture. The Jezzadeic first ventured into space in 1474 B.C. in vessels created entirely through their matrix abilities. While they never perfected intergalactic travel, they managed to explore a respectable amount of their own galaxy. To this day, Jezzadeic ships are highly sought after by smugglers, due to their maneuverability and invisibility to conventional sensors, which use energy signatures to track ships. Jezzadeic vessels do not emit conventional energy signatures.
The Jezzadeic first encountered the Alliance in 2120, when one of their exploration vessels found an Alliance patrol looking for pirate activity. Diplomatic relationships were opened, and negotiations began in good faith. Though there were never any serious problems between the two governments, it took over eighty years for the Jezzadeic to apply for Alliance membership, mainly due to their ponderous system of debating a subject for inordinate amounts of time.
Jezzadeic love to study artifacts and learn about their creators through them. Jezzadeic also carry objects, which are empowered, or going to be empowered. As a result, a typical Jezzadeic ends up covered in a huge amount of junk. Most Jezzadeic carry shards of pottery, broken gizmos, and things that nobody in the party can even identify.
Another quirk that doesn’t endear the Jezzadeic to most species is that they snore… loudly. Anyone bedding down near a Jezzadeic is going to have one heck of a time getting to sleep. Parties operating with a Jezzadeic require two extra hours of sleep to be well rested. Proper ear protection negates this need.
The Jezzadeic are a mammalian-like species, similar to the large herd animals that once roamed the plains of Earth. They are herbivores. A Jezzadeic can go for up to two weeks without eating before showing any ill effects, utilizing efficient fat storage nodules located throughout their physical structure. However, eating takes a lot of time and the Jezzadeic consume a great deal of vegetable matter at each meal. Fortunately, a Jezzadeic only needs to eat about twice a week, but they spend eight or nine hours per meal. Jezzadeic disturbed while eating tend to be irritable, so caution is advised when approaching a feeding Jezzadeic.
Jezzadeic can usually be found wherever there are things to be dug up and studied. Many archaeological sites will have a Jezzadeic or two dutifully studying the findings. Museums are also popular among the creatures. Most Jezzadeic practice a craft of some sort. In quiet times, they can be found in an out-of-the-way spot, usually their workshop, puttering around with some impossibly intricate example of their work.
The Jezzadeic enjoy wide-open spaces and dislike the cramped, narrow rooms favored by Humans. The Jezzadeic home is generally spacious and has numerous breezeways and open windows. A workshop is a part of nearly every Jezzadeic home. Likewise, a small alcove dedicated to the contemplation of The Way is nearly always present.
Jezzadeic consider themselves teachers of The Way first and foremost. Even Jezzadeic who are not practicing clergy are still considered priests by others of their kind. However, Jezzadeic can be found doing a variety of work other than preaching The Way. Jezzadeic craftsmanship is usually superb and commands high prices on the open market. Jezzadeic also command high salaries as archaeologists and archivists, due to the loving care they put into such work.