Thinderin Species in The Bubble | World Anvil


The thinderin are one of the most important members of the society of contemporary races at the time of the bubble.   Thinderin individuals have an unusual life cycle, particularly amongst known sentient species. It consists of two phases. As "seedlings" the young are motile but in later life they join or found a new grove, at which point they become sessile, unable to move and acquiring plant like characteristics. Thinderin groves are a repository of racial wisdom and the seedlings visit them to consult and commune with their elders on a regular basis. They also tend to the care of the adults. Seedlings may remain in the motile stage for close to one hundred Earth years. As members of a grove they may live for upwards of another five hundred, although it is unclear how much individuality they retain towards the end of their life as their knowledge and memories become absorbed in a diluted form by the rest of the grove.   The cover image shows the thinderin grove at Eduoma.

Basic Information


In their motile stage, thinderin seedlings have three tripod legs which terminate in wide footpads which support the body and are also capable of extracting nutrients from suitable surfaces. Branch like limbs with mauve "breathing" leaves surround the core of the body which has a bulbous, fermenting, egg shaped belly. The branches can also serve as sophisticated manipulative arms. Wide celluloid lenses on multiple eye stalks project from the upper part of the belly.   Thinderin seedlings hear and talk using a pair of double purpose, tightly stretched membranes around their midriffs. These membranes are natural microphones and natural speakers. If the taut fibres are ever torn they will re grow, although the seedling will be deaf and dumb until the process is complete.   The seedling's intelligence resides in a neural network distributed around the top of the core and protected by a cap of thicker woody bark that serves as a skull. A canopy of somewhat overlapping parasol growths, sprouting from the top, function as highly efficient photosynthetic energy factories. This is coupled with a complementary saprophytic biochemistry that enables them to extract nutrients from dead wood and soil through their feet and combining both power sources the seedlings are able to store and utilise sufficient energy to maintain a surprisingly active metabolism.   As mature members of a thinderin grove, the trunks of the adult trees are white and papery grey, thick but not particularly tall. The bark is dense and grooved with cortical folds of intelligent wood. They have tiny oval leaves which are mauve in colour and are of the same type as the motile form displays.   In the image below, we see a member of the light guards standing before the melding minster at the apex of the temple of chromatic enlightenment on Silusia Alpha at sunset. The seedling carries a kinetic flame rifle and wears a metal skirt with energy shielding booster interlocks.  
Thinderin Seedling by DMFW with Vue

Genetics and Reproduction

Thinderin seedlings start life within a grove when the female flowers of the sexually mature sessile form are pollinated. On their native planet, this was once achieved via an insect like vector species called the derin fly but for as long as they have had a civilisation, the seedlings have managed the process themselves.   Baby seedlings, sprout from the fruit of the female trees, which is gathered and planted into carefully managed nursery beds by the older seedlings. In their early years they are unable to move and are looked after by their motile older relatives. Eventually they become capable of locomotion and join wider society.   The seedlings do not breed until it is time to set down permanent roots. They are sexually immature whilst roaming free and usually remain so for at least seventy Earth standard years. Their gender is predetermined before they sprout but cannot be expressed until they become a static part of a grove.

Additional Information

Geographic Origin and Distribution

Within the bubble, the major thinderin presence is on Silusia Alpha where the Light Guards act as custodians for the amnyine Temple of Chromatic Enlightenment. There are smaller groves on the moon of Keldarchon and a mining colony on Alanon II. They also have study centres on Eduoma and Inuwarmah.   The homeworld and the major grove worlds of the thinderin lie outside the bubble and were not visited by humans until the end of the Limitation. These worlds are known by reputation only, and include Usaraxa and Low Glade, two systems said to lie close to the Bubble within the Querequian Fall and from which thinderin exiles fled to Silusia Alpha, fleeing the Third Forest Fire. Trepalah is reported to be a high population thinderin colony, also not far from the Bubble, whilst deeper into the Querequian Fall is the distant world of Ysalaka, which is an important wet forest world.

Civilization and Culture

Major Organizations

All thinderin consider themselves members of the Greater Thinderin Forest, in more or less good standing, a loose affiliation of groves and seedlings that sets their social and political policy. The light guards of Silusia Alpha are by far the best known of their representitives to humanity, but within the wider Forest, they are certainly less significant than they may appear inside the bubble. More powerful groups that operate within the society of contemporary races must certainly exist closer to their home world but these remained obscure and little known to humanity whilst the limitation was in force.

Major Language Groups and Dialects

Thinderin languages are divided into two major families, the "meld" and the "wandering" types.   Meld languages are used in the groves and rely on subtle managed chemical imbalances in the soil, constructed over long time scales. They are languages of dreaming, memory, prophesy and poetry and their richness of expression is only poorly understood, even by motile thinderin who can tap the root systems and communicate imperfectly with their elders.   Wandering languages are used by the seedlings. Thinderin "Galactic" is the most universally understood, a language they consider a simplification of an older form known as "Free Wind" which had become globally dominant on their home world before they emerged. Although mostly based on Free Wind, Galactic also borrows heavily from two other important ancient languages, "Strong Wood" and "High Rivers". Four other wandering languages are still in use on their colony worlds, deriving from smaller communities on the origin world. These are known as "Old Root", "Imaginary", "Fallen" and "Quaternary" and their speakers can all communicate also in "Galactic". Quaternary only survives now in a considerably evolved form spoken by the Light Guards of Silusia Alpha. The mysterious and important “Legends of the Chromatic Temple” is written in the original Early Light Guard dialect of Thinderin Quaternary.   A seedling's nervous system can accurately record and duplicate a wide range of sounds via the resonating bands surrounding their core which can act like speaker diaphrams. This near perfect reproduction gives rise to an eerie quality in their speech when communicating with aliens (such as humans). Each word sounds as though it has been carefully selected from a dictionary but unless the speaker is repeating a sentence they have memorised, the combination of words does not run together with the inflections a human would always impart. Often the thinderin can sound like some badly programmed computer, with unnatural pauses and words articulated too distinctly. From time to time when their own original thoughts are able to employ a replicated phrase exactly as they have heard it, they will drop the whole group of words into their speech, mimicking the human original’s voice more perfectly than any parrot. When a seedling has learned from many teachers it has a disconcerting multiplicity of accents combined in odd ways.

Common Customs, Traditions and Rituals

Many (but not all) thinderin seedlings are known to carry a life deck, consisting of a set of cards with arcane cultural meanings not thematically disimilar to the ancient tarot pack in human societies. The interpretation of the symbols on thinderin cards is very obscure to humans. There are periodic rituals in which groups of thinderin will gather to play some kind of game with the cards, although perhaps a more accurate description is that it is a form of religious observance. It is also known that a wild form of gambling forms part of this tradition and that the outcome of the ceremony or game is used to determine the course of action for individuals in their private lives. Sometimes this results in radical changes in their behaviour, jobs, mating patterns and manner of living.   The Light Guards belong to a tradition that uses the cards in a way they call the Life Games.


The thinderin emerged in 82716 BCE and for most of the following years they have been a peaceful and increasingly influential member of the society of contemporary races.   There have, however, been three periods since emergence when relations between different clans within the Greater Thinderin Forest broke down so badly as to result in internecine conflicts known as the Forest Fires.  
Period Conflict
82520 BCE to 82229 BCE The First Forest Fire
47101 BCE to 46002 BCE The Second Forest Fire
22537 BCE and 22461 BCE The Third Forest Fire

Articles under Thinderin

Cover image: Eduoma : Thinderin Grove by DMFW with Vue


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