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Shadows

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"Every light carries a shadow." - Obelisk inscription found on Z'ha'dum

PHYSIOLOGY:  When visible, the Shadows are arachnidlike in appearance. Their advanced understanding of the nature of matter allow them to "phase;" making them visible only to obscure bandwidths of the E-M spectrum.. Additionally, their sheer physical strength is far superior to that of humans.

PSYCHOLOGY: The Shadows have chosen to not pass beyond the veil and remain on this side of the Rim to shepherd the new races into their ultimate form. Their method is to create chaos and war.

 The Shadows fear telepaths of any species, since they could disrupt or destroy their technology.

LANGUAGE:  The spoken language of the Shadows is a rapid series of high-frequency bursts.

HISTORY: The Shadows are the second race in the Milky Way galaxy to gain sentience.. They were one of the first sentients to discover and manipulate hyperspace. With the emergence of the First Ones, the Shadows perhaps perceived a threat to their dominance and warred with them

over the course of the last million years. The last Great War occurred ten-thousand years ago, leaving the Shadows defeated, not destroyed. For nine thousand years they waited, then in approximately 1200 C.E., the Shadows began to prepare for another war. By this time most of the First Ones had gone beyond, leaving the remaining elder Ancients and the current races to deal with the threat.

During their Uprising the Shadows used the Narn homeworld briefly as a resupply post. They slaughtered almost all the Narn telepaths. G'Quon and the remaining telepaths (all of whom were past childbearing age), forced the Shadows off their world. This was one defeat of many for the Shadows. They gathered their forces too quickly and were stopped before they were ready. An alliance of worlds, including the Minbari and the remaining First Ones put them down.

 Around the time of the Uprising, the Shadows stored some of their vessels in the Sol System for future use. Humans have found two, one on Mars in 2253, the other on Ganymede in 2260. The first was returned to the Shadows in exchange for unknown favors. A secret cadre of humans, including some highly-placed individuals in Psi Corps and Interplanetary Expeditions (IPX), created an alliance with the Shadows around 2253. Shadow assistance was given to the Psi Corps in the alteration of human telepaths. One such experiment led to the creation of embedded artificial personalities (APs) fanatically loyal to the Corps. When telepathically triggered the AP permanently replaced the previous personality. Other experiments with Shadow technology led to more insidious "creations."

 After reviewing data from a long-range probe, an expedition was commissioned to explore the barren world of Z'ha'dum in 2257. The Icarus, a human explorer ship under the direction of prominent xenoarchaeologist Dr. Chang, landed on Z'ha'dum. The crew of the Icarus did not know as much as they could have about their mission, which was funded by IPX. Captured by the Shadows, the humans were given a choice: serve us or die. At least one member of the crew, Morden, is in their service. One of a long line of Shadow Thralls, he, like all the rest, thinks his masters are his equals.

 The Shadows latched themselves to the Centauri; once performing "favors" for them through Ambassador Londo Mollari; now for Lord Refa. This will carry a heavy price for the Centauri. The Shadows are using the Centauri's war with the Narn as a distraction. By helping the Centauri retake the Narn Homeworld and colonies they removed a source of potentially damaging information about them (the Book of G'Quon), or so they thought.

 Learning from their most recent defeat, the Shadows are slowly consolidating their power; manipulating races behind the scenes. The Shadows know that the Vorlons are aware of their intentions. However, they feel they are in a superior position. Should the Vorlons sound an alarm they feel most races would not believe them. Even if most races did, such a move would force the Shadows to move agressively now, causing the deaths of billions of unprepared lives. They are not afraid of the Vorlons; they are afraid of an alliance of races.

 In early 2260, Ambassador Mollari began to have doubts about his alliance. According to the settlement that occurred between Ambassador Mollari and the Shadows, the Shadows are only interested (or so they say) in a portion of the galaxy opposite that held by the Centauri. There are no guarantees that either side will not attack the other once they achieve their immediate goals. Regardless of this "agreement" the Shadows began massing their

 fleet in Sector 800, on the border of Centauri space.

 Following a defeat at the hands of the Vorlons, the Shadows retaliated by striking at an easy target. "Led" by Morden, three Shadows killed the Vorlon Ambassador on Babylon 5, Kosh Neranek.

GOVERNMENT:  The Shadows have agents of many races working for them. One  human agent, Morden, is a survivor of a survey ship that explored Z'ha'dum. He currently has dealings with the Centauri Lord Refa and certain Human factions (most notably Psi Corps) in Earth Alliance. I have heard rumors of Shadow Agents among the Narn. They also use Soldiers of Darkness of varying forms and abilities: Shadow Warriors, Drakh, Zener, and Goblyns, which are only a few of the many races used (and presumably altered) by the Shadows.

MILITARY:  In the period following their awakening, the Shadows had only used token forces so as to not attract attention. The forces they committed to the Centauri for their brief war with the Narn were but a fraction of their total war machine. According to legends they are an almost invincible military force. However, Shadow vessels can be easily disrupted by a telepath of sufficient strength.

 Scattered reports describe a massive Shadow vessel, much larger than the battlecruisers. Its purpose and function unknown.

HOMEWORLD: Z'ha'dum

COLONIES:  There is more than one place of power for the Shadows and their minions. One  such area was located near Minbari and Human space.

TECHNOLOGY: Ultratech; The Shadows are master of hyperspace.

NOTES:

  • According toMarkab Ambassador Fashar (2259 C.E.): "The forces of darkness do not move openly. They work through others. Use others. When the darkness was defeated long ago, they scattered, hid themselves away in secret places, and waited. Now, the dark hand is reaching out and recalling them from their sleep."
  •  According to G'Kar, theNarn Ambassador to Earth (2257 - 2259 C.E.): "G'Quon spoke of a great war long ago against an enemy so terrible, it nearly overwhelmed the stars themselves. G'Quon said that before that enemy was thrown down, it dwelled in a system at the rim of known space. I searched for days, going from one system to another. Then, on dark deserted worlds, where there should be no life, where no living thing has walked in over a thousand years, something is moving, gathering its forces, quietly, quietly...hoping to go unnoticed. We must warn the others. After a thousand years, the darkness has come again."

IRL: Notes on the Entries

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Voltayre's Folly - Planet of Mystery