The kouhun (plural: kouhuns) is a centipede-like creature that inhabits the jungles of Indoumodo; a planet in the Wild Space region known for its dense jungles and thick swamps, and home to some of the most ferocious and poisonous creatures and plants in the galaxy. The kouhuns are especially favored by assassins and hence used to perform their deadly tasks and killings.
Anatomy & AppearanceEdit
The kouhuns are seen to resemble centipede-like arthropods that come in a variety of colors. Although these creatures are naturally pale white in color, there are some that exist to be reddish-brown and glossy black. Also, they can be fed with dyes that could alter the color of their carapace or exterior covering to a desired shade.
Kouhuns have segmented bodies wherein each segment has a pair of relatively long limbs. Due to these numerous pairs of limbs, these creatures are able to ascend various structures and surfaces from which they could ambush their prey or flee from pursuers. These kouhuns can grow to around thirty centimeters in length, drawing similarities with their real life counterparts, the large centipede Scolopendra gigantea, which are also venomous and can grow up to around twenty-eight centimeters . These physical characteristics of the kouhuns provide them with the swift and almost inaudible movement that they use to subdue their larger preys.
These creatures are widely feared in the galaxy for the venom that they possess. There are two means by which they can administer their neurotoxin. First, is through a bite from their mouth pincers. The neurotoxin that was delivered through the pincers acts quickly on the recipient of the bite. It is fatal to almost all species in the galaxy. In species with higher sapience, bodies with varied and greater functionality, the neurotoxin generates symptoms similar to that of a heart attack or to any other natural fatal causality. Second, is through a sting from their tail stinger. The sting, although producing great pain, is nonetheless nonlethal and only leads to the victim's incapacity. This happens so because a smaller dosage was delivered by the stinger as compared to the dosage delivered by the mandibles.
The head of this creature bears a pair of black eyes, mandibles, and a tongue that can extend from four to ten centimeters in length. The kouhuns can be differentiated into two subtypes. One type features a larger segmented body with a more distinct tail stinger as compared to the other type.
Intelligence, Behavior, & Feeding HabitEdit
The kouhuns, due to their low level of sapience, are regarded as vermin and are thus treated as very harmful pests by the sapient inhabitants of the galaxy. Although they are regarded as such, these centipede-like creatures are depicted to be force-sensitive. In other words, they are attuned to the flow of the force. Being force-sensitive, they are able to escape detection and unwanted exposure.
They are known by many as being aggressive creatures but there are times when they would appear to be timid or unassertive. They despise the presence of light, making them freeze or hide from it. When they are attacked or threatened, they would flee and seek shelter. But if cornered and nowhere to hid, they would confront the attacker/threat. Before attacking they would raise their upper body and hiss, attempting to intimidate or scare the pursuer.
The kouhuns are widely perceived to be carnivorous. In truth, they are omnivorous. These creatures are attracted to warmth and they have the ability to sense infrared thermal radiation – an ability evident in some families of snakes. Animals that sense infrared thermal radiation are able to "see" radiant heat given out by other animals. The kouhuns use these particular senses to detect and locate warm-blooded animals, usually preferring those that are nearest to it. Normally, they would use cover, which is provided by the environment, as an advantage to sneak up on their prey. In their planet of Indoumodo, they usually hunt creatures that are said to be the size of dogs. It is known that these creatures would still attack and devour prey even when not faced with hunger, often acting on their predatory killer instincts. Once the prey is subdued with the neurotoxin from its mouth pincers or from its tail stinger, they prepare it for consumption. Once dead or incapacitated, the kouhuns release their saliva on to their prey. The saliva contains a chemical that breakdowns the flesh of the prey into nutritious and palatable fluids.
The kouhuns are native to the jungles of Indoumodo where they establish homes in hollow trees. But aside from this home world of theirs, they could also be found in a number of worlds stretching from the well-developed and highly populated Core Worlds, such as Coruscant, to the least explored and populated worlds of the Outer Rim Territories. Kouhuns are known to survive in any environment except for those with extremely cold climates.
These creatures are transported to zoos and poison research facilities all throughout the galaxy. But the main reason for their dispersion throughout the galaxy is their popularity among assassins. Assassins would use these kouhuns as weapons to commit their tasks on various worlds. Assassins would keep these vermin in cages not only to transport them but also to protect themselves from the creatures' often fatal aggression. Given the chance, the kouhuns would escape from their cages and propagate in their new environment. In the Core Worlds, breeding colonies can be found in the impoverished sectors. The kouhuns here could be oftentimes traced to have escaped from the cages of assassins. In the Outer Rim, in desert worlds such as Tatooine, they could be found in subterranean caves or even just burrowed under the sand.
Popularity & UsageEdit
The kouhuns have gained popularity in the galaxy due to their usage. They are feared by sapient inhabitants of the galaxy due to the lethality of their neurotoxin and their ability of force-sensitivity. These two characteristics make the kouhun a favorite by many in committing criminal activities. Swiftness, convenience, being untraceable, and lethality are the main reasons why assassins prefer the kouhun over technology. Handling these creatures though proved to be dangerous. These creatures would greet their captors with aggression and attack them when given the chance.
In some cases, assassins would let these creatures consume particular dyesin order to match the environment of their targets. Before they are set loose on the designated targets, they are starved by the assassins to make them more vicious and aggressive. Due to their small size, the kouhuns could easily pass through security checks and through small apertures in order to reach the victim. They could be delivered through a droid or package also. Also, due to the nature of their neurotoxin, they could not be traced back to the assailant.
In the assassination attempt of Senator Padmé Amidala in 22 BBY, bounty hunter Zam Wessell employed two kouhuns in order to dispose of the senator. The kouhuns were delivered via an ASN courier droid. The creatures were able to escape the security check of R2-D2, and were almost successful in their attempt to kill the senator if not for the Jedi Anakin Skywalker.
- "Kouhun." Wookieepedia, the Star Wars Wiki. Web. 05 Oct. 2011. <http://starwars.wikia.com/wiki/Kouhun>.
- "RPGGamer.org (Characters D6 / Kouhun (Venomous Insect))." RPGGamer.org. Web. 05 Oct. 2011. <http://rpggamer.org/stats.php?page=d6/d6kouhun.html>.
- "Archaic Arthropods: The Centipedes and Millipedes." Diogenes on HubPages. Web. 05 Oct. 2011. <http://diogenes.hubpages.com/hub/Archaic-Arthropods-the-Centipedes-and-Millipedes>.