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Voxyn were a genetic cross between a fero xyn and a vornskr—both deadly predators—shaped into being by the sapient Yuuzhan Vong species. Designed to hunt and kill the Force-sensitive Jedi of the galaxy, which the Yuuzhan Vong were invading, the reptilian hounds were all clones of the voxyn queen, the only successful cross between the vornskr and the fero xyn. As they were made to kill Jedi, the voxyn could sense Force-sensitives through the Force and had a variety of deadly abilities and tools at their disposal: sonic blasts, flesh–melting acid, disease–coated claws, and a poisonous barbed tail. After creation, voxyn were typically trained by the Yuuzhan Vong aboard the worldship Baanu Rass over the world of Myrkr to hunt Jedi in a multitude of environments as well as how to avoid various hazards. Measuring a meter high and over four meters in length, the carnivorous voxyn were fast and agile on their eight legs.
In existence by 27 ABY, in the midst of the war between the Yuuzhan Vong and the New Republic, the voxyn quickly killed many Jedi on numerous worlds, becoming a great source of concern to the New Jedi Order. The Jedi focused on dealing with this threat by dispatching a strike team to Myrkr, where the voxyn queen had been located. In the Myrkr system, the team boarded the Baanu Rass, where, although taking heavy casualties, it managed to kill the voxyn queen and put a stop to the cloning of the voxyn, preventing any more of the beasts from being created. Because of the beasts' short life spans and their inability to reproduce, this spelled the end for the voxyn, and they began to die off. Despite the diminishing voxyn numbers, the Yuuzhan Vong continued to use them on critical missions, with the last voxyn perishing in the Treskov system in 28 ABY.
Biology and appearanceEdit
Yuuzhan Vong creationsEdit
Created by the sapient Yuuzhan Vong species, voxyn were a genetic cross between a fero xyn, a ferocious hunting animal from the Yuuzhan Vong's homeworld of Yuuzhan'tar, and a vornskr, a hound that was native to the planet Myrkr. All voxyn, save for the voxyn queen, were physically identical, as they were all clones of the queen, which was the first voxyn to have ever been created by the Yuuzhan Vong. The cells of voxyn deteriorated at a rapid rate if they were not exposed to a nutrient from the planet Myrkr, and as such, voxyn in other parts of the galaxy typically did not survive for more than a few months after their release. Although voxyn could lay eggs, these were sterile. As such, the creatures could not naturally reproduce, so they relied on Yuuzhan Vong cloning to maintain a population. Once a voxyn's cells started to deteriorate, the scales lost their color and flaked off; the creature's movements would then become listless as it lost energy, and its eyes would become filmy.
Standing about as high as an average Human's waist, at one meter, mature voxyn measured over four meters in length and were reptilian in appearance. A pair of oval yellow eyes were located on the voxyn's flattish head, which had a broad snout over six inches long filled with fangs, and its lithe body was covered in black or green scales and sported eight legs with claws. The creature's eyesight in poorly lit areas was particularly good, as voxyn eyes could see twice as far as normal in low light, as well as being able to distinguish colors in dimly lit areas. Voxyn torsos possessed a gut, stomach, and a rib cage that protected the internal organs. The voxyn body gave off heat, allowing it to be tracked by beings who had access to the infrared spectrum. The paws of the legs were round, and the toe pads housed a hundred deadly retroviruses, whose medium was the green slime that covered the voxyn's claws.
A series of sensory bristles ran down the creature's spine, and the voxyn also possessed a whip-like tail that had a white barb on it. A voxyn's tail was poisonous, a trait passed on by the vornskr, and the poison would cause swelling and make most creatures' flesh red for one to six days. The tail's barb could also be used to deliver a neural shock. The sensory bristles along the spine were coated with a powerful neurotoxin. According to the shapers who designed the voxyn, the effect of the sensory bristles' neurotoxin was not the same on all species. Some of those affected fell into convulsions and then into an endless sleep, while others weakened over many hours before losing the ability to breathe or swallow; yet others drowned in their own saliva.
Voxyn also had long, forked tongues and were able to shoot from their mouths via an efflux tube a jet of brown, acid-like saliva that burned anything it touched. This saliva could kill a humanoid easily if it landed on vital spots like the face, and some voxyn drooled this saliva when not in combat. The creatures were also armed with the ability to emit a sonic blast from their snouts, and this blast sent a compression wave that could temporarily disable a person's hearing, make them feel nauseous, and shatter eardrums. Voxyn blood was purple in color and, when exposed to air, became a neurotoxin that smelled like smoke and ammonia and had a detrimental effect on humanoid lungs that could take over a day to fully heal. Voxyn were also fast and agile on their feet, able to jump to great heights, and could swim in water. Additionally, voxyn could submerge themselves underwater for extended periods of time, though the blast effect of a concussion grenade could stun them while they were underwater and cause them to rise to the surface.
Resilient Jedi huntersEdit
Voxyn were designed to hunt Jedi, beings who were sensitive to the Force. As such, voxyn possessed the ability to sense Force-sensitives like Jedi through the Force, an ability that vornskrs shared. Voxyn were unlike the rest of Yuuzhan Vong–created organisms in their ability to sense the Force, as members of the Yuuzhan Vong species and their other creations were completely devoid of the Force and could not touch it in any way. Even if the Force-sensitives diminished their presence in the Force, voxyn could still sense them, preventing Jedi from hiding from the hounds.
Jedi could sometimes feel voxyn through the Force as well, registering the creatures as a hungry or feral presence. Through the Force, voxyn could sometimes sense the emotions of Force-sensitives, and, occasionally, Force-sensitives could sense other things about voxyn rather than just the creatures' hunger. However, voxyn could, if they wished, hide their presence from Force-sensitives, preventing them from being able to detect the voxyn. Force-sensitives skilled with animals could sometimes convince the voxyn via the Force to do certain things by imparting ideas to them, such as attacking their Yuuzhan Vong minders, though this was difficult to do.
The genetically-created creatures were remarkably durable and difficult to kill, due in part to their ability to heal quickly. Voxyn could survive being pinned beneath a metal bulkhead, even if their torso was crushed almost flat. Additionally, they could survive the blast caused by thermal detonators and could function well even with the loss of limbs and chunks of flesh. A Jedi's lightsaber, which could typically cut through most things, had trouble cutting through a voxyn's foot, though a lightsaber could still kill a voxyn. The creatures' scales could also occasionally deflect a blaster bolt. When exposed to decompression, voxyn were able to make scale cocoons that allowed the creatures to survive for a time in vacuum, as long as they went into a deep hibernation. However, if voxyn remained in a vacuum too long, they would freeze to death, with every cell in their bodies bursting.
Although voxyn were classified as non-sapient, they were quite intelligent and possessed a natural cunning. They were smart enough to tap the activation stud of a lift tube if they wanted to use it and could occasionally sense when a trap was being laid for them, which would make them cautious. Voxyn were taught during their training to avoid both triggered traps and dangerous hazards, such as fire, to make them more effective hunters. However, voxyn occasionally had to be guided by their Yuuzhan Vong counterparts when inside unfamiliar locations, such as the interiors of residential areas, and voxyn who were confused by such conditions were considered useless to the Yuuzhan Vong. Voxyn learned from their mistakes if they survived their initial error, making them even better predators. However, unlike the voxyn queen, her clones were not cunning enough to use their surroundings to create advantages for themselves. Temperament-wise, Human Senator Viqi Shesh from the New Republic believed that voxyn were vicious in nature and enjoyed hurting things.
Voxyn had no fixed habitat, as they were taught versatility by their Yuuzhan Vong creators on the Baanu Rass worldship, and they learned to hunt in almost every habitat imaginable that existed in the galaxy—the target of the Yuuzhan Vong invasion. Voxyn could therefore survive and hunt effectively on a vast number of worlds, such as Kuat, Chiron, and Corellia. They were also comfortable hunting in and around mechanical objects, despite the aversion most Yuuzhan Vong had to them, as voxyn were conditioned from birth to be able to hunt Jedi anywhere. The creatures were carnivorous and would eat ysalamiri, humanoids, and even lone Yuuzhan Vong. Food eaten by voxyn eventually reentered the environment as droppings. Feral voxyn aboard the Baanu Rass laired in a series of caves near the best source of food, which was the city of the slaves on the worldship.
Like the fero xyn, voxyn could be controlled by Yuuzhan Vong warriors and would obey commands given to them by their keepers. All voxyn, save the voxyn queen, were trained to stalk Jedi; the queen herself was trained to preserve her own life, to ensure the survival of voxyn as a species. The creatures typically hunted in packs of four when they tracked Jedi or Force-sensitives for the Yuuzhan Vong. Warriors were in enough control of voxyn that they could have the beast stay stationary while the Yuuzhan Vong tortured other individuals with the variety of dangerous abilities that the creatures possessed, such as their saliva. Specialized Yuuzhan Vong, known as voxyn handlers, usually accompanied voxyn packs, and the beasts would tolerate the leashes that the handlers sometimes put on them, though they would still snap at the handlers if they came too close. If a voxyn was close to its prey, it would sometimes break free from the handlers to attack its target.
While looking for the trail of a Jedi or other Force-sensitive, voxyn typically swept their heads from side to side and sometimes howled when they first sensed a Jedi or other Force-user. While hunting for Jedi, voxyn would occasionally circle other non–Force-sensitives to investigate them and would cock their heads at loud noises. Voxyn also licked the air with their tongues while on the hunt and would keep their eyes fixed on the floor while their tails waved about if they had located a Force-sensitive and were following it. The creatures were resilient in their hunting, and Jedi found them difficult to deter from their tails. Additionally, voxyn continued to hunt their prey even after sustaining heavy injuries, such as the loss of limbs. Hunting Force-sensitives filled voxyn with energy, and the listless voxyn who were nearing the end of their life-spans would shake off their lethargy when they sensed prey. When entering combat with a Force-sensitive or other enemy, voxyn liked to open with a sonic screech over any other attack. Occasionally, voxyn used their acid to melt holes in which to hide.
Feral voxyn and behavioral idiosyncrasiesEdit
In the event that the Yuuzhan Vong lost a voxyn, the creature could still survive on its own, and it became feral. Even feral voxyn would attack and harass Force-sensitives, despite not being ordered to do so. Though they were able to create a cocoon to survive the depressurization of vacuum, voxyn sometimes panicked when they suddenly lost the ability to breathe air.
For a reason that the shapers who created the voxyn could not understand, voxyn hated ysalamir, creatures that were able to repel the Force. Voxyn lost their natural intelligence when ysalamiri were near and would try to eat the creatures; during experiments in which voxyn's legs were bound to the ground with blorash jelly and a ysalamir was placed out of reach in front of them, voxyn would sometimes tear off their own legs to get at the other creature. When certain voxyn could not reach the ysalamir to eat it, they would eventually resort to killing it. Some Yuuzhan Vong warriors gave ysalamiri to voxyn as treats.
Even though voxyn were sterile and could not reproduce, some feral voxyn still created nests and guarded them in a territorial style, bringing in corpses to the nests to feed the young that they would never have. Voxyn would not leave their nests unless they felt threatened and defended the nests from both other voxyn and beings not from their species, though nesting voxyn were more inclined to stay in their nest than attack a passerby unless otherwise provoked. In some instances, voxyn would starve themselves to death rather than leave the nest to hunt. While guarding a nest, agitated voxyn would ruffle their neck scales and scratch the ground. Those voxyn without nests became excited if they found fresh corpses while hunting that could potentially nourish their young, and they would drag them back to a voxyn nesting area.