|Members|| Datak Tarr|
A Castithan is a member of one of a Votan species that somewhat resembles humans.
At some point after the War of Six the Castithans welcomed the Indogenes, as they were fleeing the Omec, who created them. Both races shared a home planet called Daribo, in the Votani star system.
However, even with this seemingly peaceful cohabitation, Castithan and Indogene both claim to be the "highest" of all the Votani races, which led to bickering between them.
These qualities, coupled with a shrewd intelligence and unencumbered ambition, have helped them adapt to life on Earth. But Castithans are also vain and given to conceit. They are apt to bristle at the mere implication that another race might exceed them in intellect or beauty.
Castithans have a rigid social structure and adhere to a strict caste system. Lower classes serve higher classes, and women are usually subservient to the men in their family. Certain other races believed Castithan society would change on Earth, a new planet for them, but if anything it's driven the survivors to cling to their heritage even more. For Castithans, one's place in the world is determined at birth, and appearances are everything.
In "Down in the Ground Where the Dead Men Go", a Castithan cleansing ritual is performed for the purification of an individual's liro, or caste. The individual may also participate in Castithan "blood duels" over intended mates and other competitive issues.
Some humans use the ethnic slur "haint" to refer to Castithans, a reference to their pale color.
CultureEditCastithans' religion is called Shirivanáwo. It is extremely structured and violators of its tenets are punished severely.
Castithan is spoken very, very quickly. It's a sign of their impatience and also a challenge for anyone to keep up with them. Even the Castithan writing system (fajizwalino, literally "revered characters") is complex and irregular—and quite difficult to master. It's crucial to know whether one is speaking to a superior, an inferior or an equal in order to speak Castithan correctly (i.e. without causing offense or seeming crude).
RelationshipsEditAlthough they are conservative with regard to tradition and language, Castithans tend to be very liberal with their sexuality. Sex is as much a tool of political agenda as it is an expression of love. Castithans have zero reservations about using sex as a means to an end. That’s not to say that Castithans don’t also enjoy sex to the extreme. Many of their most cherished ceremonies involve expressions of passion and desire.
Family bathing is a common practice. In both "Pilot" and "Down...Dead Men Go", Datak and Stahma Tarr bathed together with attendants present. In "Down...Dead Men Go", Alak Tarr entered the room where his parents were bathing and his mother left the tub to embrace him. In "The Devil in the Dark", Datak finds it unseemly that Christie McCawley, his prospective daughter-in-law, bathes in private. In "Goodbye Blue Sky" it is revealed further that a bathing ritual is common among the higher liros, as a newlywed ritual with their family.
Side Notes: They often offend other Votan species with their sense of superiority. Castithans frequently bicker with Indogenes, and are known scornfully among Irathients as "haints (per "If I Ever Leave This World Alive")."