Orions are held in contempt by many in the Federation as pirates, cheats, and worse. In as unbiased a view as possible, the Orions are an extremely practical people. They are factionalized into a great many political groups, the Ral-Utak (which is alternatingly translated as `clan' or `cartel'). However, while they are rivals, they freely trade and support each other, since they generally gain by doing so.

Their joining the Federation was a clear example of this. The Federation, in general, was violently opposed to the Orion Colonies. The Colonies had equal starship technology, and were extending their smuggling and slave trade into the Federation. The Federation was gearing up for conflict when suddenly the Orions petitioned for membership. As UFP members, their convoys are protected; they have free trade with other members, and a vote in the Supreme Assembly.

Slave Races

The Orions have several classes of people who are genetically engineered for subservient positions. These account for about 20% of the population, but they are rarely entrusted to jobs of any importance, being generally used as house servants rather than menial labor. They differ racially from the free Orions quite markedly.

Free Orions typically have a ruddy complexion from a dark orange to close to a Mediteranean tan. Their hair is short and only covers the back of their scalp (much like a human male receded hairline), colored blonde, brown, tan, and white (in order of frequency).

Slave Orions include the fabled green slave girls; short, caucasian-colored servants, grey-skinned technicians, and several others. Slave races are generally made dysfunctional in some way such that they cannot function on their own in society. The green slave girls have low intelligence, and are hormonally unbalanced. Grey technicians are socially inept and generally are wracked by chronic illness which requires they stay in well-controlled environments.

Star Fleet has curtailed the slave trade within the Federation, but few slaves have been freed. They are raised well, and taught their place in society - few rebel or try to escape.


The Orions have a family centered society.

They tend to have little respect for institutions or laws, but rather regard them as a neccessary evil.



The Orions are an ancient culture, who have been around for much longer than most other currently starfaring species. They have ad FTL technology for over six centuries - more than three times as long as humans. Prior to that, they had terraformed and colonized several planets in the Rigel system; and had contact with the remnants of a earlier Rigellian civilization.

They have had a long history of genetic manipulation. (Incidentally, they have all but eliminated disease among their own population -- however, their strong immunity has led to very powerful pathogens. Many strains of ``Rigellian fever'' are deadly to other humanoids, and frequently represent a real problem.)


The Orions show little interest in local civilian governments. To them, governments are for cleaning streets, maintaining ports, and hauling away garbage -- neccessary activities that pay too little for a cartel to bother with.

The true center of Orion politics is in the Ral-Utak, which is alternatively translated as ``clans'' and as ``cartels''. While the Ral-Utak are centered around families, they are merged and bound by other contracts than marriage, so it is hard to say which translation is most fitting.

The pirate cartels are the most prestigious and militarily powerful, although not neccessarily the most dominant economically or politically. It is believed that these were originally a clandestine are of the Orion government, using ships provided to them and manned by regular officers and crewman of their own fleet. Since the early years, however, the Orion pirates have extended their operations to cover most of the known areas of the galaxy.

About 2/3 of all Orion pirate ships are ``independent'' ships not owned by any cartel. These ships ``lease'' an operating territory from the cartel.


John H. Kim <jhkim-at-darkshire-dot-net>
Last modified: Thu Sep 28 18:42:57 1995