Kestrel is part of the Fast-Response fleet of PACT, the Planetary Alliance for Co-operation and Trade. The Alliance is between the seven races who have warp drive (fast-than-light travel). One of the races is human. I have discussed the Altairians, the Anak, the Kohathi and the Ochrans and Casparians so far. Let me introduce the last people.
Zoans are stocky, somewhat reptilian, with a sibilant voice. They have a tribal culture, and both Balitoth (the crewman) and Hazeroth (the representative in Intruders) easily adapt to accept the Kestrel crew as their temporary tribe.
They are never known to raise their voices or lose their calm disposition, but they can erupt in sudden violence without showing any emotion. Hazeroth says, “My people are... unsentimental.” Their reptilian faces do not show emotions well, but those who mix with humans have learned to compensate with gestures or words.
Zoans don’t have marriage. Couples mate whenever and with whoever they want to, and then the children are raised by the whole community, particularly by the older women. Balitoth has several children, but does not keep in touch with them as they belong to the tribe of their mothers. He pays more attention to the children of the females in his tribe, as their children are his family.
The tribe is dominated by the men, but great respect is given to women. They are not second-class citizens but recognised to have different roles, more nurturing and organising. Businesses are run by tribal families, with the men making major decisions but the women running the practical side.
They live in communal groups. There is rivalry between tribes, but not violent, just loyalty to ones own.