The Rift. A place of mystery and adventure for the races of the Alliance. A place of focus and remembrance for us. The Rift has shown us the way to the Alliance, shown us that we are needed in this vibrant, and yet juvenile society.
The few of us who remain in this universe seek to preserve life, the most precious and powerful of energies in the universe. What you call life and death are merely specific states of an entity's existence, defined by your limited view of time. We preserve Life, bringing back those who are not yet prepared for the next stage of their existence. Death is a point of change, a door to evolution, and one that we have a degree of control over.
We have come because the Alliance will need us soon. Life, all life, will be in jeopardy, and its fire will not be extinguished. The Zen are telling you to mistrust us, to fear us. This is only because the highest Zen know our true purpose, and our true home. Fear us they should.
The Sye-Men are the most mystical of races; a rogue, skeleton culture rarely seen, passing through the galaxy like the wind through the leaves. The Sye-Men were first encountered by a Mutzachan science ship taking gravitational flux readings on the planet Omicron Alpha 4 in 2165 B.C. No other contact was made for almost 1,200 years until another Mutzachan vessel encountered them. It is rumored that Sye-Men come from inside the Motaran Rift, or at least that is where these strange, reclusive beings were first encountered. As a matter of fact, the majority of encounters with Sye-Men have been within 5 parsecs of the great tear in the space time continuum. In recent times, these strange beings have begun interacting with the galactic masses. Their arrival has been greeted with a mixture of mistrust and pleasure, for these beings hold strange, mysterious powers.
Sye-Men are hideous to behold. They are tall, gaunt skeletons. Their skin sags from the bones, seemingly wet, with deep crags and discolorations. Their watchful eyes are set back deep into the skull, lending more horror to their repulsive forms. It is the soft resonance of their deep, rolling voices that woo people; it is their strange power of healing that often allow them to overcome their hideous appearance. Their specific purpose is unclear and their presence spreading, along with it hope and a strange undercurrent of dread.
The Sye-Men possess the unnatural ability of bringing the dead back to life, which has come to be called the Palm of Resurrection. At low levels, the use of this strange power is dangerous and can kill the Sye-Men.
The word Undead is a mythological name for beings that assume the appearance of the living, but have none of the metabolic functions. These creatures of fantasy and horror were believed to be evil incarnations. Fallen persons would rise from the dead to haunt and kill their past loved ones. Evil creatures, unaffected by pain, would crawl from desolate crypts and ravage towns. The fact is, Undead are real to some degree. The Motaran Rift appears to be a tear in the fabric of time, linking time to itself, and all aspects of life to a single point. There is documented evidence of horrific beings who appear alive, but then not alive, which have escaped from the rift to wreak havoc on nearby worlds. Scientists theorize that there must be a time corridor that links some netherworld (other parallel universes) to the third dimension. Others believe it is a conduit that links another part of the universe to itself (a wormhole portal), which has yet to be discovered. Religious groups call it Hell. Whatever the case, Sye-Men are aware of its existence and are wary of the beings that exist there.
In addition to being able to invoke the Palm of Resurrection, Sye-Men possess other powers. All beginning Sye-Men are able to generate the matrix Speak With Dead.
Sye-Men have no central government. This society is at peace with itself, and there is a communal respect for one another. Age is the governing factor, and respect is always afforded to elders.
The Sye-Men culture is matriarchal. Females head the family unit. This is due to the fact there are so few Sye-Men at all. Thus, the survival of the females is of paramount concern. Males are important too, but overall are considered less vital to this race, which numbers less than 2,000,000.
The Sye-Men have rather strange cultural mores (unwritten rules). The saving of life is held in high regard. Yet, if a Sye-Men saves someone's life, then that person must forfeit something of importance as a show of thanks. Secondly, when Sye-Men mate, the female first kills the male, then brings him back to life.
Sye-Men chronologies date back as far as 300,000 B.C. The Sye-Men suffered through little internal strife. Currently, they share an amicable relationship with the Mutzachans. These cerebral people often hold secret meetings, discussing the future of the universe. Some claim that the Sye-Men are here to affect the outcome of the future itself. These rumors have never been substantiated.
The Sye-Men are hated by the Zen Rigeln, who claim that the Sye-Men are a perversion that should be eradicated at all costs. Zen see their powers as a mockery, some insidious evil bent on the destruction of the universe. Many a person has claimed that there is a strange resemblance between the two races. Conjecture suggests that they are related, something the Zen Rigeln vehemently deny. When questioned on this subject, Sye-Men usually smile and say something to the effect of, "Wouldn't that be interesting."
Just look at one! They are hideous. This brings the usual preconceptions and fears. They are also few and far between, literally, very far between.
If you think skeletons who sleep standing up are a little strange, check out this fact: Sye-Men stand on their heads to eat and often remain in this position while digesting.
Sye-Men claim that they are here in this universe to simply observe the life here. From observation, a Sye-Men can further understand his position as "keeper of life."
These skeletal creatures sleep standing up and look like scarecrows. Furthermore, Sye-Men need only 2 hours of sleep per standard day. They live to be 1,500 years old.
Sye-Men covet a strange device called Aaginato (an Agg for short), which is a split pronged staff made of Hamerlite, a radioactive metal alloy found on the post holocaust Earth, Trishmag, and a few other planets. The Sye-Men claim that when properly "tuned", the device generates a powerful field that doubles the amount of energy that the Sye-Men can employ in a given day. Aggs are crafted by the Mutzachans. Sye-Men love money!
Sye-Men wear raincoat-like apparel called Newiles. They wear the hood close up around the head, hiding their faces.
These beings are often found in morgues or near cemeteries, lamenting the loss of those who are gone.
Sye-Men keep no real home. Any quarters set far apart from others is considered fine. Sye-Men quarters are austere, devoid of any comforts. It is rare for the Sye-Men to enter cities. They find these establishments uncomfortable and disconcerting.
A Sye-Men doesn't prefer combat, but will engage in it when necessary.
Sye-Men almost never sign on to work for companies. They prefer to drift, hiring their services out in order to secure travel or money.
Yummies. They come in so many interesting colors, and are easy to carry.
Given Sye-Men are continuous travelers, they prefer a companion that is light-weight. Enter the mouse-equivalent. Sye-Men often carry several mice-equivalent. The mice-equivalent are never kept in a cage, but make their home in the folds of Sye-Men's dressings.