The Almighty Sarlacc
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Gavin Young
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 Post Posted: Tue Aug 16, 2005 6:39 am    Post subject: The Almighty Sarlacc
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The Almighty SarlaccFrom The Books of Suns
(Corellian Archives)
Compiled by Buej Ka'min Brendirn


Most of what has been recorded of the organism known galactically as the "Sarlacc" is through handed-down stories, legends, fear and least of all, science. The word Sarlacc was derived from the ancient Ghorfas, a race known to the earlier ages of Tatooine [words 'shar' and 'laka'] who referred to the creature as the "mouth of the monster", because that was all there was to see -- rather that was all anyone ever saw before they were heartily devoured and kept alive to endure a horror for the rest of their existence.

The Organism
In Frem II's foreward to his father's unfinished "Desert Requiem" he comments briefly, "My father had studied the famed Sarlacc of Tatooine, but it was the very subject he studied who aided in his demise. Not through physical consumption, but through consumption of the mind and rational thought. This thing was not meant to be dealt with on any reasonable level, nor was it meant to be studied. There are few creatures who should only be the subject in some fiction or the fleeting thought in some poetic verse, the Sarlacc is such."

The largest of the organisms in the Core Worlds was the (assumed) female found on Tatooine beyond the Jundland Wastes within the Pit of Carkoon. The implication here is that there were others; how many exactly was left unknown. The only other known occurence of the creature was on Dathomir. The reproductivity of the creature was assumed to occur similar to the likes of most plant life of the various desert worlds; where spores were released that contained both-sex chromosomes in order for gestation to occur autonomously. The organism on Tatooine was thought to have arrived at some point during the first or second age of the planet at a time when Tatooine knew water. According to the Corellian Core Archaeological Society, the areas around present day Mos Eisley and Mos Espa were covered with rivers and deltas. Consequently, the trench that makes up some of the major parts of the Mos Espa circuit were among the many that formed the Great River of the Ghorfa. [*Note: the Great River of the Ghorfa (aka: the Ghorum River) spanned two-thirds of the planet's surface fed by underground springs near the equator of the eastern hemisphere. This point also called the 'Springs of Lords' or 'Abbinghor'.]

The origin of the Sarlacc was theorized by many a scientist. Most theories were considered ridiculous while others have remained. Two of the most famous theories are of the ancient Vong and the Ghorfas themselves. It was theorized that the ancient Yuuzhan Vong sent the spores via trade lanes or even the Maw, as probes into the vast regions of outer galaxies in order to monitor where hospitable planets lay (as the Sarlacc must rely on oxygen). The other theory, and of course most scientists hold fast to this one, is that the Sarlacc was developed by the Ghorfas through genetic means and cultivated on Tatooine. Carbon sampling has lead to the belief that the Sarlacc on Tatooine is one of the oldest if not the oldest living organism in the Core System, with the Sarlacc on Dathomir running a close second. Between both theories the one constant is the notion of sub-space spores. The Sarlacc will enter a mating period approximately every one hundred years. It is during this time that the Sarlacc who will have built up a stockpile of spores in a chamber near its main stomach, will send forth these spores into the atmosphere and beyond. During one such event, the learned scientist Gorman Hek recorded:
"Quite alarming was the sight, one humid evening. The camp my young host so verily established for our group was set some five-hundred meters, due north of the infamous Pit of Carkoon. While having fought back the terror of enduring the Tusken's "night vigil" we were further terrorized by the sound of horrible, thunderous moaning that resounded for hundreds of meters in all directions and filled the night air. All emanating from the mouth of the pit, one can only assume. All camp members roused from slumber trekked the few hundred meters to the pit and witnessed a sight so wonderful yet equally frightening. The creature had managed to bring itself out of the pit enough to spew forth hundreds of pods or seedlings high into the air above. With an energy unknown to me or my kin, these pods flew with a mighty force high into the sky and I imagine beyond the confines of this planet's atmosphere and into deep space. Ducking beyond sand dunes, we continued to gaze in wonderment at the events beheld us, and in some ways felt a sense of anxiety as the creature slowly descended into the sandy pit where it dwelled. Come the following morning, I was pleased, nay relieved to return to the safety of my home yet privileged to take with me the wisdom wrought by yester-eve's events."

The terror of the Sarlacc was matched only by the great Krayt Dragons but lasted far longer. According to Coruscant Science officials the hapless victim was pulled into the mouth of the beast and paralyzed instantly. The rest was an eternal nightmare. Picture yourself as such a victim who has gotten on the wrongside of the Hutts and now find yourself being thrown into the mouth of the great beast as your sentence. Upon entering the mouth of the Sarlacc, your body is lashed to the first stomach chamber wall by large cillia or tendrils about the size of a human's finger. Once you have been tethered to the stomach lining, each tendril pierces your skin and sends a fluid into your body and muscle that almost instantly paralyzes you. Once paralyzed the creature surrounds you with a bile-like fluid and begins to absorb you like a nutrient into its blood stream, while at the same time allowing its own blood to pass through your withered body to keep you alive. This process alone will take some one-hundred years, for the only event that will bring about your demise is insanity. Until that happens of course, you, a "nutrient", are deliberately kept alive, as your body will produce the best nourishment while some consciousness remains. Once you have sufficiently died, the next five-hundred years is spent further breaking down the your body and moving it from the first chamber to a second chamber where the remaining moisture is withdrawn. From there the Sarlacci cillia move your remnants to a third stomach chamber where the solids are ground down to a pulp. Again, nutrients are withdrawn over several hundred years and the waste sent into the bowels of the creature.

The notion of the Sarlacc taking one-thousand years to digest its victims is somewhat mythical, for the few who have studied the creature haven't lived long enough to witness the Sarlacc consuming and expelling a full meal from start to finish. In fact, the longest study of the Sarlacc's banquet was approximately nine hundred, sixty-four years by the infamous MAH Durm fer'Uni of Corellia. He writes in the afterward of his elejournal titled simply, "Carkoon": "There be a word in Ghor for the time and effort a scholar takes in devoting his work to a subject that eludes him, and I have found myself writing this word in the Tatooine sand many times. The word is a 'maraduum'. This project of knowing the Sarlacc is my 'maraduum', for although she remains inert, and I have witnessed the devouring of her prey, I see no signs of normal biology. So perhaps the laws of biology do not apply to her and so I have not studied something tangible but I have merely observed, the life of a ghost and she will remain history's maraduum."

Had the Ghorfas indeed created the terrifying creature? If so, for what reason? Questions that to this day plague the minds of historians.

The Mythology
The Sarlacc has been the source of many myths but more importantly has been the religious symbol for many fundamentalist groups throughout the Core Worlds; the most famous of which are the Tusken Raiders. The Tusken Raiders seem to have an uncanny connection to the creature and seem to posess the ability to bring down curses upon enemies in the name of the Sarlacc. Many folklorists felt that one of the reasons for the raid on Fort Tusken was that the Sand People felt the human's of Tatooine had made threats even motions towards destroying the Sarlacc. The same was believed of the Lucky Despot's doomed landing in Mos Eisley. Few were aware that part of the Lucky Despot's crew was a crack team of scientists ready to send probes into the belly of the beast that after transmitting and receiving their data would have likely killed the creature upon extraction. "...[knowing this] the scientists were fully prepared to remove the creature and further study through dissection and ultimately display the Sarlacc in the Coruscant SGA Museum of Antiquities.", (HL Thurma Sorn, of Alderaan ACH). Believing this to be an all-out threat to their culture, the Tuskens, it is said, brought down a curse upon the flight of the Lucky Despot and her crew, hurling them towards the city of Mos Eisley to crash land. Most shipwrights of the Core Worlds presumed the ship was doomed to someday crash due to lack of maintenance or upkeep but most people (especially those dwelling on Tatooine) adhere to the curse of the Sarlacc being capable of bringing down any such ship or piece of technology deemed worthy.

Such too is the belief of the Desert Demons. A name irreverently used to classify the many nomads who roam the flatlands of Tatooine. Some desert geologists have turned up crude, handmade sanctuaries where the Desert Demons have left behind what is assumed to be a bible. The book seems to have been written in a combination of Ancient Basic and another unidentifiable written language. The title on the cover is in Ancient Basic and reads 'Corim' or 'The Body'. [*Note: other such books have been found having the same content but titled differently: see 'Mis un Sym' ('The Canon of Sand'), also 'Mis un Cartuum' ('The Carkoon Missal'). Researchers believe these to represent different sects or perhaps a hierarchy of the religion.] From the translatable verse of this book, the Desert Demons seem to worship the Sarlacc and believe it to represent some sort of deity. One such passage translates:


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
"And the prophet said unto them, 'Hail brethren! For I send you my servant of the earthen world,
that he may lift you out of the land of slavery and darkness,
and that you shall know peace when his enemies are slain.'"
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

One is then left to assume that the reason for the Desert Demons' outright violence and flagrant behavior toward offworlders is due to their convictions for the Sarlacc as god. System Theologians have dubbed the religion Sarlism and, on a more reverent level, its followers the Sarlites. The Demons' maniacle behavior has lead some theologians to believe that we may be in the middle of some holy war, yet no Demon would let themselves be captured alive, much less be questioned.

A lesser known group, the Spice Fiends, have been known to extract the toxic fumes from the surrounding areas to fuel charges in the dispersal mechanisms of some of their more underworld/black market spice concoctions. These dispersal mechanisms thereby enhance the spice ten-fold which can, in some cases force the spice to a lethal level. Spice Fiends were not as ornery as the Desert Demons as they did not participate as underhandedly in the faction wars as did the Demons; but that is most likely due to the overuse of their product. "They are identifiable alone through their speech. For it was slurred and lazy and although I knew they were speaking in the common tongue, they somehow made it a foreign language.", (from "A Vellian Scout", Travver SC).

The Almighty
The Sarlacc's place in the Core Worlds' history is mysterious at best. For some a cursed monster, for others a myth happily experienced through fiction or folklore. The Hutts learned a great lesson after the death of Jabba at Carkoon, and upheld the belief that it happened in the name of the Tusken Raiders' curse, for who else but the force of a god could destroy a Hutt? So too have the bounty hunters learned of their mortality after Fett assumedly perished by the hand of the creature.

And so the great beast remains unmoved, content to rest waiting for food to simply move passed its waiting tentacles. Core Worlds' science has left it alone for the moment and so have the theologians, deciding it was better to let sleeping Sarlacci lie.



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"The people then bowed their heads and struck their hearts, prostrate to the earthen angel, and cried out,
'O that we may be saved from these dark days and know justice by the mouth of god.'
The people then fell, headlong into the angel for they were indeed holy."
(from 'The Canon of Sand', Anonymous)
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Gavin Young

Luke Skywalker
"We can live without religion and meditation, but we cannot survive without human affection."


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