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What Happened to the Humans?

By Architect_of_Aurah · Jul 1, 2013 · ·
  1. 20,000 years ago, humans lived everywhere on Aurah. Land bridges allowed them to move virtually anywhere. Then a massive radiation burst from Theta Proxima merged their DNA with the animals they came into contact with, particularly those they ate as food or used for furs and bone tools.
    At first the human reaction was hostile. Tribes either slaughtered their altered babies the moment they came into the world, or made them live as outcasts. Yet over three or four generations, with most babies emerging altered and the adults changing too, it was clear anthroes were there to stay.
    New anthro clans emerged, orientated mostly by species. The carnivorous ones started hunting both herbivorous anthroes and humans. Faced with increasing persecution, nearly all humans died out. Some retreated far into the wilderness to live on, while a few escaped on simple boats to Brama or to the islands north of Borea. There were some anthroes here, but few enough to avoid.
    Humans were nearly extinct by 10,000 years ago, while rising sea levels split up the various anthro clans. Anthroes are gradually rediscovering them and welcoming them back into society. Indeed, in some cultures they were judged to be gods or supreme beings; the fathers of races. However, years of ignorance and the machinations of fanatical groups such as the Brotherhood of the Fur have confounded these efforts.
    Humans certainly did not fare well with the rise of anthroes. However, it is said that there were also fish, bird and reptilian races that emerged and fell at the same time. These anthroes were confounded by the problems of reproduction, or with having to adapt to activities their bodies were unsuitable to, such as flying or diving underwater. Whether there are any of these groups still around is not fully known.

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  1. Weaver
    "Then a massive radiation burst from Theta Proxima merged their DNA with the animals they came into contact with." Can I comment on the science?

    First, "Theta Proxima" (which would be "theta Proxima," actually) looks a little bit like the way we'd name a star, but it doesn't fit. Proxima would be a constellation, with this star being one of several (at least 8, since theta is the 8th letter of the Greek alphabet)... Except we have a star called Proxima already. See what I mean? Better to fix this or just make up something that doesn't follow our naming conventions for stars.

    Second... I know it happened all the time in pulpy old sci-fi, but a radiation burst would not cause merging DNA. Not directly, at least. What it could do (it doesn't take as much of a stretch as you might think) is cause a mutation in some chimera virus -- a type of retrovirus that carries lots of DNA from each thing it infects to the next thing, and the next thing... This would give you the merging human and animal DNA in a plausibly 'realistic' way -- which I'm assuming you want, or you wouldn't have mentioned DNA in the first place.

    I do wonder why the anthroes stay clearly defined new species instead of continuing to merge into new 'combo' hybrids, but that could well be something the story deals with.

    "having to adapt to activities their bodies were unsuitable to, such as flying or diving underwater" - If their bodies are unsuited, why would they even try to do these things?