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Andorian and Denobulan Sexuality

Postby Honeybee » Thu Sep 23, 2010 4:14 pm

It's a surprise to me that more fun hasn't been had by fic writers with regards to these poly-amorous societies.

I had a blast in my MU fic contrasting monogamous, possessive Vulcans (well, one Vulcan, T'Pol) with pansexual, polyfidelic Andorians.

Also, I really enjoyed a short challenge fic by Distracted that portrayed Phlox's marriages in the E2 universe. Him having more than one wife becomes a necessity given the fact that half-human/half-denobulan babies don't sleep. The wives need to take shifts. It's called Blue Christmas.
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Postby Mistress Euclid » Tue Sep 28, 2010 9:58 pm

I wanted to point out the fic that is the centerpiece of the Reed/Shran thread - Covert Blue.

Kathy Rose and Kylie Lee (and perhaps Kathy Rose can comment more) really developed the idea of an Andorian quad - with only two genders, but with two members who appear transgendered, if that's the right word. While not central to the story, it creates a great layer that reminds the reader how different Shran is from Reed.
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Postby Kathy Rose » Wed Sep 29, 2010 10:27 am

Heh. You asked for it:

Both Kylie Lee and I were intrigued by the four-person Andorian family concept. I'm not sure if it was ever brought up in any of the Trek series, but it does concern a subplot in some of the DS9 novels. Since our intent with Covert Blue was to delve into a Reed/Shran relationship with intimate aspects, we couldn't ignore Andorian societal/family structure.

We didn't want to come up with new theories, but wanted to make what we wrote fit with what was already out there. Granted, novels aren't considered canon, but other than Andorians being belligerent, easy to anger, and good fighters, we don't know too much more than that.

One thing brought out in the novels is that the Andorians might actually become extinct in the future. It requires four persons to have one child. As proposed by the novels, there is also some sort of genetic problem making reproduction even harder. So Kylie and I postulated, as in the novels, that there's a lot of pressure on Andorians to save their race by having children, and that the four-person group is necessary for that.

In our story, Shran is not afraid to have an intimate relationship with a non-Andorian (Reed). Only someone of Shran's standing, not to mention self-assurance and arrogance, could get away with it and not fear any repercussions from his home world's society.

As far as the two gender vs. four gender or transgender, we tried not to emphasize that so much. For one thing, we didn't want the story to get bogged down in details that weren't essential to the plot. But we also tried to get across that, depending on an Andorian's status in the four-person group, there were dominant as well as subservient personalities that fit in with their everyday lives.

We also had several new Andorians to round out the plot, a couple of whom play important roles in the story. It's through them that we were able to convey much of what we believed Andorian family life would be like, as well as aspects of Andorian sexuality.
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Postby Honeybee » Wed Sep 29, 2010 2:51 pm

One of the things I did my mirror story was propose the idea of a human joining an Andorian quad and having children with the quad - assuming that if say, Vulcan/Human hybrids can be created, so could Andorian/Human hybrids.

This was a fairly minor plot point, meant to illustrate a character's commitment to integrating aliens into the Empire.

But it was fun to think about Andorian sociology and how quads would form. In the story, Talas does not like Shran's other wife - and so resists marrying him, even though she wouldn't mind being married to him.

I would imagine once one pairs off with one person, that would limit ones options because a new partner would have to be married to both of you. It's hard enough to find a comparable spouse for one person - two or three must be very difficult.

I did like in the story that quads could apparently come in multiple permutations - though I wondered how that would affect procreation. Sometimes, of course, it's best not to think too hard about how it would work.

Another detail I had in the story was about Andorians being very carnivorous, figuring they would have to eat fish and meat since farming doesn't seem like it would be an option on an ice planet. This might account for their aggression, given that it might have taken them longer to develop urban societies without agriculture.
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Postby Kathy Rose » Wed Sep 29, 2010 6:26 pm

Honeybee wrote:Another detail I had in the story was about Andorians being very carnivorous, figuring they would have to eat fish and meat since farming doesn't seem like it would be an option on an ice planet. This might account for their aggression, given that it might have taken them longer to develop urban societies without agriculture.


That makes sense.

That's one of the fun things about fan fiction -- coming up with logical ideas that expand what's already known about characters.
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Postby Mistress Euclid » Wed Sep 29, 2010 7:30 pm

I think it is canon that Andorians and Vulcans are opposites or at least in opposition.

Reason/Emotion; Vegetarian/Carnivorous; Desert/Ice; Monogamous/Poly-amorous


Yet, they are both telepathic species. There are many possibilities for contrast.
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Postby Section69 » Fri Oct 08, 2010 2:02 am

Kathy Rose wrote:Both Kylie Lee and I were intrigued by the four-person Andorian family concept. I'm not sure if it was ever brought up in any of the Trek series, but it does concern a subplot in some of the DS9 novels.


I swear I recall the Andorian family concept was one born originally of fandom, then eventually brought into semi-canon in the novels via an interpretation of something Data said in "Data's Day". I wish I could find the info on the original fandom concepts -- maybe I was imagining that?

Honeybee wrote:But it was fun to think about Andorian sociology and how quads would form. In the story, Talas does not like Shran's other wife - and so resists marrying him, even though she wouldn't mind being married to him.

I would imagine once one pairs off with one person, that would limit ones options because a new partner would have to be married to both of you. It's hard enough to find a comparable spouse for one person - two or three must be very difficult.


Ah! I hadn't thought of this! Good point.
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Postby crystalswolf » Fri Oct 08, 2010 5:33 am

Section69 wrote:I swear I recall the Andorian family concept was one born originally of fandom, then eventually brought into semi-canon in the novels via an interpretation of something Data said in "Data's Day". I wish I could find the info on the original fandom concepts -- maybe I was imagining that?

I found this at Memory Alpha. I don't remember much of the "Data's Day" ep and haven't read the books they mention (but did read TGTMD) so not sure how accurate but perhaps this info would help someone else that has.

I just thought of some situations where combining personalities may not be such a problem. What if a married quad isn't expected to live together (unless they want to)? I thought about this because of the Denobulans and realized each is allowed 3 mates... but that doesn't necessarily mean they live with all of them at once. Actually that would be extremely difficult.

Or if there is some expectation among Andorians to try very hard to adjust to the others' personalities until a balance is achieved. Much like arranged marriages where people must go through a period of learning and living with the other's personality.

I actually have a story on the "To Do" list that forces me to figure this stuff out... at least the basics. :faint
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Postby Kathy Rose » Fri Oct 08, 2010 6:59 am

On the topic of Denobulans and tooting my own horn at the same time...

Denobulan family life played a big part in one of the Enterprise Virtual Season stories posted at Warp 5. Honored Daughter was written by PJ in NH and me, and concerned Phlox's return to Enterprise, along with the daughter of one of his wives by another father. We tried to express that there is strong pressure on Denobulans to conform to their society's expectations for the multiple-partner marriage. We also introduced another of Phlox's wives.

(The story can be read as a stand-alone, without having to reference other stories in the virtual season. That's something we tried to do in the series, so that readers could pick and chooose "episodes" to read as they pleased.)
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