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Khefak

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Khefak
(Creature)
Type Vermin
CR 1/3
Environment Any (Akiton)
Alignment

Source: Alien Archive 2, pg(s). 78
Thasteron khefak
(Creature)
Type Vermin
CR 3
Environment Any (Akiton)
Alignment

Source: Alien Archive 2, pg(s). 78

Khefaks are a species of arthropods originally created by Akitonian firm Khefak Biogenetics. They were engineered for the purpose of consuming and recycling thasteron, but have flourished on Akiton since the thasteron market crashed.[1]

Appearance

A khefak resembles a centipede-crab cross, with an exoskeleton, pincers and 20 segmented legs. A slit runs from its head to midpoint, which serves the purposes of eating, reproducing and excreting. A khefak's mouth is full of grinding teeth. Its carapace varies on its diet; if it consumes thasteron, it grows in size and emits low radiation, while its exoskeleton becomes crystalline.[1]

History

The first khefaks were genetically engineered to consume scrap thasteron and refine this waste into useful fuel. When Drift travel was revealed to the universe, the thasteron market collapsed; the khefaks and the refineries where they live were abandoned by their owners. Due to their fast reproduction and hardiness, khefaks found little difficulty adapting to their new environment. They left the thasteron facilities and turned to feeding on other inorganic materials. Some khefaks have spread to other planets via starships, but they remain rare outside Akiton due to various preventive measures.[1]

Ecology

Khefaks feed on plastics, composites and most metals, but cannot consume soil. Due to their rapid metabolism, they need to eat many times their weight daily. Their preferred food is thasteron, the substance for which they were created to eat, and which allows them to grow rapidly. Their food is integrated into their exoskeletons, which can be easily hollowed out after the khefak's death as its connective tissues decompose rapidly.[1]

When food is abundant, khefaks reproduce asexually once every few days, and young khefaks mature within days. If food is scarce, they can hibernate for years, and they rarely starve due to the abundance of their food in modern societies.[1]

Society

Residents of Akiton hunt khefaks to keep their numbers in check and gather their exoskeleton to make armour or refine into minerals. Khefak exoskeleton diffuses radiation better than most materials, protecting the wearer. Their flesh is not edible.[1]

Some locals raise khefaks and train them to pick through hazardous ruins and consume valuable salvage, so their exoskeletons could later be sold for profit. This practice is banned in many regions of Akiton.[1]

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 Paizo staff. (2018). Alien Archive 2, p. 78-79. Paizo Inc. ISBN 978-1-64078-075-0