A creature that exists on two entirely different states of being: Virtuals are cold, calculated, insane quasi-synthetic entities that live on the far fringes of the Terran System and beyond. Their sheer danger and psionic power is offset drastically by their rarity and reclusive habits.
The bodies of a Virtual share the same anatomy of the Baseline posthuman that it once was. Due to never having to use this body for anything other than brainpower, they are quite emaciated and have distinct growths penetrating the skull and bulging their head.
Genetics and Reproduction
Due to possessing no working sexual organs and no inherent desire to produce more of their kind, Virtuals cannot reproduce.
Growth Rate & Stages
Virtuals typically "grow" by expanding their influence throughout the electronic devices that they control. The more computational power they possess, the more potent their psionic bowers will become.
Ecology and Habitats
Usually, Virtuals inhabit distant space stations within the Oort cloud, far away from the intrusive presence of explorers and hidden by the dangerous cloud of icy asteroids. This environment grants them a massive amount of Hydrogen for the fusion reactors on their stations. It is in these seemingly derelict stations these beings simply think, stewing in their own misery while deluding their already fragile psyche in a never ending stream of mental static that consists of their thoughts.
Dietary Needs and Habits
The body of the virtual needs the same nutrients that a Baseline human needs, and typically receives these nutrients from the cybernetics they received before their deterioration into a Virtual.
Virtuals appear to possess no social structure with one another; but will employ a variety of mind-controlled slaves and robotics to execute their will.
Geographic Origin and Distribution
Virtuals can rarely be found near civilized areas. Most Virtuals exist within old, derelict space stations which aimlessly orbit in far away from the sun, usually within the Oort cloud or beyond.
Virtuals possess immense amounts of intelligence; and with little emotion or morality to keep their decisions in check, they often employ this intelligence to yield deadly results.
Perception and Sensory Capabilities
Symbiotic and Parasitic organisms
Rarely, explorers with a lust for power will ally themselves with particularly powerful Virtuals to gain a portion of their psionic power; at the cost of becoming the Virtual's pawn.
Civilization and Culture
Virtuals typically reffer to themselves as their given names when they were born, before they turned into what they are now.
To a virtual, the only relationship worth having is a relationship that benefits the virtual. They're extremely manipulative, and will act as a friend towards anything they meet while not trusting them for a second. Should they find out that a person is of no use to them, the virtual typically disposes of the poor soul without any warning --usually through a blast of psychic energy... or simply through an automatic gun that pops out of a floor panel on their way out. The few Virtuals that were "cordial" enough to give a reason as to why they do this claim it's to maintain their secrecy.
"You honestly expected me to believe that he wouldn't tell everyone about me? Even if he was infallible with his word: any fool with the power to read thoughts would know of me when they met him. It's a precaution I needed to take."
Average Technological Level
Due to their partial existence within a computer, Virtuals have demonstrated an astounding ability to improve the technology that they inhabit. Typically, they do this through the physical reallocation of hardware within the station they are on, and extensively rewriting the computer language of all devices on the station to better suit their needs.
When neural interfacing was first made public, hundreds of entertainment companies scrambled to create expansive virtual worlds, scenes, and settings that could be linked up to directly through the mind. People cherished these worlds and the virtual avatars they used to explore them. Many of these people become addicted to these worlds that they lived and considered them more real than their actual lives --lives that were crumbling due to their rampant dependency. After spending numerous years in this simulated state of being, their minds and bodies grew to depend on these virtual environments beyond mere addiction.
The brains of the addicted not only grew to accept their neural interface implants, but grew reliant on them through "offloading" mental processing into the processing of the machines they were linked to. This was accomplished through neuron-growths on the frontal lobes: a trait all the addicted share. The minds of these individuals, now existing both within their own brains and on the processor boards of the machines they were linked to, gradually began breaking down while exploiting their new environment to increase their intellect.
The atrophied, pitiful bodies of the addicted often remain in their expensive simulation pods; slowly withering away as they enjoy a fleeting existence of supreme power and intellect within their reality and the real world.