Martians are the native denizens of G'loot Praktaw, which humans designate Mars. They are colloquially known as Marjuns.
Not much is known about human or martian history for the approximately 950 years between War of Two Worlds and modern times in Sparks Nevada, Marshal on Mars.
There was a more recent Human-Martian war, within Croach the Tracker's lifetime. The humans won this war by accidentally devastating the martian population with disease, despite their superior biology.
Martians were then moved to other parts of the planet so Humans could also settle on Mars. Although currently relations between the two are peaceable, it is implied that the past has been rife with conflict. The friendship between Croach and Sparks Nevada has been credited with much of this current peace.Calling a martian a "blue-skin" is considered a slur. Martians are also sometimes referred to as Marso, Marser, and Marsite.
There are at least two different skin tones for martians, blue and gray. Blue martians are far more common.
In Red Alert, Sparks Nevada, Mercy Laredo, and Croach the Tracker found the The Secreted City of Rococoo, home to a tribe of peaceful gray-skinned martians, also inhabited by Dale Treamain. Still, not much is known about gray-skinned Martians except that they are very now peaceable, stealthy, and enjoy their privacy.
In earlier centuries, gray-skinned martians were the original invaders of Earth, which began the War of Two Worlds.
Martian Physiology & Reproduction
- Martians are basically humanoid in design (two arms, two legs, one head, fingers and toes, etc.) however, they appear to be hairless, have antennae, and very flat noses. They do not have ears.
- All adult martians possess Nah Nohtek (nanotech) which gives them superior healing abilities, amongst other benefits. Croach the Tracker has survived gunshots, being squished, being turned inside-out and other tragedies with only a few moments of pain due to his Nah Nohtek.
- Martians possess several more senses than humans. In one episode, Croach says he has twenty eight senses. Their antennae have metaclorians, which enhance their perception.
- Martians also have several more redundant organs than humans, for greater survivability. For instance, they have at least three spleens and two esophageal tracts.
- Martians can shed their exo-skin. Croach refers to this as his dermis, indicating the shedding process is fundamentally different from Earth animals which shed. The shed skin retains the color of the martian who shed it, at least in the one known case when Croach leaves his skin at Sparks' desk (Moonfaker).
- They have a speech cluster somewhere in their midsection. Shooting it renders them unable to speak until their Nah Nohtek repairs it.
- Martians' mouths are able to produce bioluminescence. They are able to change the colors of the bioluminescence at will.
- Martians do sleep. When they dream, their dreams include triangles, fractals and the entropy of the fourth dimension.
- Martians can excrete a slippery solution to help escape from being stuck.
Martians generally do not possess emotions. However, spending time in close proximity to other beings that do have emotion can trigger emotions in martians. See Emotions in the entry for Croach the Tracker for more details.
Martians may also experience "dvie’yeece" if they are in close proximity to unfamiliar very intense emotions, in which they transfer the emotions from the person having them to themselves.
Martian males possess eggsacs. It is unknown whether or not martian females also have eggsacs. Once the eggs in the eggsac are fertilized, the Martian carries the ovum for an unknown amount of time. Eventually, the martian will turn slightly green, then dig a hole in the ground and deposit the fertilized eggs.
Upon hatching, martians fight their broodmates for dominance, and consume those that they dominate. The alpha continues the life-path and is given their primary signifier. Their lives then become a series of small trials to ready for the great trial of B’ar-mit zvah, which takes place in the Forest of Tak’slaw (Scary Forest, also referred to as Forest of Trials). Should they survive their Hee-Ros K’west, they are given their secondary signifier, and at the end of their maturation they are blessed with the sacred Nah Nohtek. Then, they live under onus to their tribe for the rest of their natural lives.
- Nuts, including chestnuts, pistachios and walnuts, are fatal to martians. Peanuts, however, are fine against blue-skinned martians, as they are legumes. Inhalation of chestnuts roasting on an open fire will kill a martian painfully. Walnuts were the primary cause of the martian loss of the War of Two Worlds.
- Peanuts are fatal to gray-skinned martians. Jim Lyons throwing a bag of peanuts at a group of aliens caused the initial nut fatality during the War of Two Worlds.
- Alcohol bonds with martian Nah Nohtek and renders it inert. Although alcohol isn't deadly, it will prevent their Nah Nohtek from functioning indefinitely, making martians much easier to kill.
- Oxygen-laden blankets (or as humans call them, just blankets) once caused an outbreak of Small Ox, which sent many Martians to convalescence.
Martian Customs and Culture
The following applies to blue-skinned martians, as very little is known about gray-skinned martians.
- They do not reveal their feet to anyone but their very close family members, their betrothed, and Klylak the Shoebuilder.
- "Bagropa!" is an exclamation of surprise or lament.
- "Buttmilk" is an insult.
- "Holoba" is a greeting.
- Every martian is given a two signifiers. First, a name (like "Croach") and a designation, which is their profession within the tribe ("the Tracker"). Some humans are also given signifiers, such as Sparks Nevada, the Human. There are no two signifiers that are the same, thus Croach is the only martian tracker in existence.
- Martians tabulate the onus which they owe and are owed to others. Even the most minor kindness or infraction can add or subtract onus with a martian. See the entry onus for more information.
- Martians do not utilize metaphor. To utilize metaphor is shameful and might get a martian exiled.
- Martians do not sing, although they do have some music in the form of drums.
- They have a holiday designated Han-oo'Kah, which is celebrated the first Sunday of any month, and is a day of feasting.
- Martians also celebrate Halloween, as all species do
- They ride Hoversaddles, while most humans ride rocket steeds
- The martians have an intricate series of tunnels under Mars, which they use to escape from the The A'pokk'alip-sss.
- Martians rank nearly everything they see or experience in relation to the pain or pleasure it brings them.
- Croach claims in Christmas on Mars that his particular tribe of martians never lies. There is another tribe that lies all the time. (It should be noted that in Something Wicked This Way Is, Croach says that in general martians are neither more or less honest than humans.)
- Martians learned English by reading Rebecca Rose Rushmore's novels.
- Martians cannot eat many foods which humans enjoy (an artichoke dip is described as lethal to many of the tribe), but can eat many things humans cannot, such as a lava-based fondue.
- Martians mostly live in the Undercity, which is seen in The Sad, Sad Song of Widow Johnson, Part Two (SNMOM #2). However, they also have Overcities, on the surface of Mars, which they use for celebrations and the sacred rite of Pic'nic.
- The mars moon which the humans refer to as Phobos is designated Blerk.
- They use the word "boo" to calm their younglings.
The Collected Scrolls of G'loot Praktaw
- The rules of Onus are explained in the scrolls
- Metaphoric expression is forbidden
- The use of contractions in speech is also forbidden
- Hee-Ros K’west must be undertaken in the Forest of Tak’slaw as part of a maturation ritual, guided by the Yarnato. At the end of the ritual, one must face a manifestation of their greatest fear in the Apotheosis Springs. If successful, the Karpagian Mists will grant the subject their gifts (Nah Nohtek).
- Croach the Tracker
- Klylak the Shoebuilder, who is the only non-family member or betrothed for whom it is not shameful to see other martian's feet. (The Agony of the Feet (TAH #6))
- T'eers the Trail Establisher (Christmas on Mars (TAH #52))
- Barlok the Wise, chief of Croach's tribe (Christmas on Mars (TAH #52))
- Sheb the Comptroller (Christmas on Mars (TAH #52))
- Mulk the Esthete (Christmas on Mars (TAH #52))
- Murn, the Martyr
- Chulp the Imposter, accomplished at impersonating other martians. (Christmas on Mars (TAH #52))
- Pratop (Christmas on Mars (TAH #52))
- Gleb'ob the Envious (War of the World (TAH #53))
- Behizipep the Outcast, who was capable of poetic expression. Do you know what happened to him? He was exterminated. (Do the Fight Thing (TAH #57))
- Flumig'm the Orator (Do the Fight Thing (TAH #57))
- Fligig'm the Mumbler (Do the Fight Thing (TAH #57))
- Gilft the Helpful
- Flimk the Noticer (This American Wife (TAH #38.1))
- Flandolf the Dog-Earer (This American Wife (TAH #38.1))
- Coffee Jim, who brews all of the coffee for all denizens of G'loot Prak'taw (This American Wife (TAH #38.1))
- Flindarf the Top Shelf Repairer (This American Wife (TAH #38.1))
- Jofene, the second shelf repairer (This American Wife (TAH #38.1))
- Tindune, the bottom shelf repairer (This American Wife (TAH #38.1))
- Klindolf the bell unringer (This American Wife (TAH #38.1))
- Vlaim the Fabricator (A Comet's Tale (TAH #11))
- Praytrop the Contrary
- Tbeblblblblbeb the Fearful of Co-Gender Dances (La Venganza de Los Bandititos (TAH #157))
- Croach the Tracker's mother, speaks old martian. (Better Red Than Dead (TAH #173))
- Tr’tht the Easily Distracted (Wild, Wild Quest (TAH #177))
- Krathok the Self-Loathing (Wild, Wild Quest (TAH #177))
- Croach the Tracker's grandfather, died during his maturation ritual. (Wild, Wild Quest (TAH #177))
- Krim the Unwittingly Deadly (Martian Orders (TAH #206))
- Oblecht the Hippest (Still Alive (TAH #234)