Girtablilu profile Picture

The basic info on the Girtablilu. This hybrid race from Mesopotamian mythology hardly ever features in fiction. My setting gives them an intriguing sinister role based on the myths' statements of the fear and death these beings were associated with.

General characteristics:

From above the waist Girtablilu resemble Titans, if one factors out the red pupiless eyes and the viscous cheliceras protruting from the sides of the mouth. From below the waist they resemble scorpions. The skin of the upper, titanoid body portion comes in different shades of grey. The lower, scorpionoid portion is somewhat darker than the upper body, ranging all the way up to a jet black.

Overall, a Girtablilu's appearance conveys a feeling of fear, which was the intention of these beings' Titan creators.

Anatomy:

Girtablilu are huge even by Titan standards, standing a massive 15-20 metres in height. Mesopotamian mythology tells of how their “heads touch the sky”. They are also incredibly strong, capable of smashing a Titan's skull in a single blow or performing other impressive (and often frightening) feats of strength. Like scorpions, they can withstand extremes of hot and cold and are capable of turning off their own metabolism as a survival mechanism.

Girtablilu breathing is done in the same way as with the other featured races- through a pair of lungs found in the chest cavity. As such, the scorpion-like lower body lacks the book lung system found in actual scorpions.

As one might guess, the Girtablilu have both an endoskeleton (in the case of their upper body) and an exoskeleton (in the case of their lower body). These two merge, with the spinal chord running through the lower body and with the skin of the upper body containing chitin. As a Girtablilu grows, it sloughs off old layers of skin and carapace. As with the rest of the featured races, Girtablilu stop growing when they reach adulthood.

The gland at the end of a Girtablilu's metastoma (scorpion tail) contains a venom that affects nerves and muscles, and the stinger is practically a living dagger. Girtablilu lack the pedipalps ending in chela (pincer claws), found in actual scorpions.

Girtablilu are carnivores and feed in the same manner as scorpions, by tearing up their food with the small pincers of their cheliceras and secreting enzymes onto it to partially digest it before sucking it up.

Girtablilu mate like scorpions do, with the male attaching a spermatophore- a large and complex structure with a stalk- to the ground and placing the female over it. This is a rather difficult task requiring high precision. Like all the featured races, Girtablilu give birth to live young- a characteristic found in both mammals and scorpions alike.

The Girtablilu possess a more powerful version of the Naga ability known as “The Gaze”. This is basically the ability to overcome an opponent by looking directly into their eyes. When they do this, they project emotions (most notably fear) into an opponent's mind. Mesopotamian mythology says that the Girtablilu's “prescence was dread”, that their “glance was death”.

Origin:

The Girtablilu were created on Earth by the Earth-Krypton Titan faction, during the Titan Galactic War. A genetic hybrid part Titan-part giant scorpion, the Girtablilu were created for use as shock troops and as guards for high-security places. To help strike fear into the enemy, the Girtablilu's creators deliberately made this race both frightening in appearance and in mannerisms.

After the Titan Galactic War, created races were persecuted by the “victorious” Earth-Nebheru faction, many of whom viewed these beings as abominations and perversions of nature. The Girtablilu, in particular were not well liked. Many other Girtablilu died as they were left without masters to provide for them (as this unnatural race was more suited to the living weapons role than to an independent existence).

Psychology:

The Girtablilu mind might almost be described as a state of psychosis. They seem naturally predisposed to violent behaviour and appear to lack certain emotions such as fear, remorse and sorrow.

Despite their aggressiveness, however, Girtablilu are easy to control. They are extremely obedient beings who will unquestioningly follow the orders of whomever they view as their masters.

While the Girtablilu often seem to be little more than an entire race of violent psychopaths, there are some indications that they may be a bit more complex than that. For instance, the Epic of Gilgamesh tells of how the Hero King Gilgamesh encountered a male and female Girtablilu guarding the gates at the “Mountains of Mashu”, in what is now the Middle East, on Earth. Not only did the two scorpion people not kill Gilgamesh, but they actually let him pass. Girtablilu may have a reputation as brutal killers, but even they are less one-dimensional than just that.

Society:

Girtablilu are not really suited to serving as anything other than soldiers or guards. Unsurprisingly, they never formed any societies of their own. After the Titan Galactic War, many Girtablilu died off. However some were employed by certain Titan factions for use as guards. Thanks to this, the race managed to survive and some were even seen on Earth, where small numbers of both Titans and Nagas were permitted to establish colonies during the “Golden Age” of the Humans. The last recorded Girtablilu on Earth were the two guards encountered by King Gilgamesh (see above). Some may still exist elsewhere in the galaxy, serving Titans who find a use for these beings of terror.
Continue Reading: Ages of Man