Personal Log -April 14th, 2114
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Personal Log -April 14th, 2114
Laws of the Hunt
These are the top laws of Yautja society, they define the rules of the hunt.
1. Never attack an unarmed foe.
In one hunt, a predator noticed that a man was carrying a squirt gun through the use of his electronic face mask. The man was left alone.
2. Never hunt a child.
The only exception to this rule is when 'things get out of hand' (explained later), and even then the only young Yautja are allowed to kill are alien Chest Bursters. Also, on a hunt, a predator usually leaves his victims hanging upside down for feeding, but this is also a ritual warning to the young of the race to prepare to meet a hunt when they grow up. It is their official challenge for the child to begin training if they haven't already.
3. Never hunt pregnant prey.
The Queen bug is the only obvious exception. It's not fair when the prey is always pregnant. Beyond the Queen, this rule always stands. Even if a Yautja was being hunted by a pregnant species, the only honorable tactic is escape. This is a variation on the second rule, never hunt a child.
4. Never interfere with another's hunt.
I can think of one good example of this law being put into practice. Yautja will destroy rescue ships or any other vessel from landing once the hunt has begun. They do this with a very large shoulder rifle, one shot can obliterate an entire ship (80'-120' in length). The hunt must not be disturbed, violators of this law are executed (which obviously includes other races). It should be noted that a clan leader may not violate this law. He can not interrupt a subordinate's hunt for any reason.
5. The winner of a hunt deserves respect, no matter what it is.
If a Yautja stumbles into a hunt between another Yautja and its prey. If the prey kills the Yautja in that hunt, then the observing Yautja will give respect to the victor by leaving it alone, unharmed. It deserves the respect of enjoying its victory. This does not mean that the observing Yautja won't challenge the creature in a hunt at a more opportune time in the future. Also, rare circumstances have allowed alien races to fight alongside a Yautja and earn that Yautja's respect, and in one rare situation (mine) be adopted into their race. But, if a creature fights alongside a Yautja and earns their respect, but is not adopted, then this does not mean that the creature won't be challenged in a future hunt. Yautja are very ethnocentric, but this respect is maintained as one of their highest laws.
6. When hunting, there is always an equal.
This rule especially comes into play when a Yautja hunts alone. This rule is repeated in its context in the section on Hunting Alone, The Path.
7. Never steal another's trophy.
This includes predator and non-predator races.
8. Never ever kill another Yautja.
A cardinal rule, 'look before you shoot'. A misfire of a weapon, or accidentally hitting a comrade during a hunt qualifies as killing another Yautja. Such a predator is a clumsy fool and deserves death. I heard one predator exclaim, 'shooting a brother warrior accidentally is the height of bad manners.'
There are a couple of exceptions to the rule of not killing another Yautja, the only one spoken here is execution, which is carried out by clan leaders and chieftains only.
9. Once a hunt is initiated, it must be completed to the end.
Once all the Yautja return from a Rite of Manhood hunt with trophies or those that don't are confirmed to be dead, then the hunt is considered finished. However, all aliens should be killed, but many times the Yautja are messy and this doesn't always happen. One time a Yautja violated law number seven and he was left to the whims of the aliens, naked. This was his execution and since it was the will of the clan leader, his word is law. According to hunter folklore, the aliens/bugs evolved simultaneously on many worlds, this is preposterous. It masked the truth that Yautja themselves spread the aliens through their blood rites. Cultural pride could never stomach this notion. Usually, leaving any aliens alive after a hunt is considered criminal, it means that the hunt was never completed.
It should be noted that this ninth law has been made popular by a famous predator saying, 'Dtai-k-dte sa-de nau'gkon dtain'aun bpide', which means the fight begun would not end until the end.
10. You must always fight fairly (the rule of all rules).
Killing while cloaked is against this law. Although this law many times means execution, sometimes it just brings dishonor. If a Yautja should hunt unfairly for whatever reason, then the code commands that he should not take a trophy in these situations.
There is only one honorable penalty for breaking any of these laws, execution. And no one is above the code, not even the clan leader. Now, beyond the code of the hunt, which defines the rules of the hunt (the highest in the Yautja's Code of Honor), there are also many rules or ways to gain or increase one's honor, but also equally many ways one can dishonor themselves.
One's honor is at stake when following these rules, but they rarely lead to execution. The dishonored can suffer one of several penalties: execution, severed gonads, the removal of one's name, a back hand, or a slap, which is a ritual warning.
1. The Hunters consciously attempt (and succeed with alarming accuracy) to stay out of public notice and therefore out of the documented history of their prey's people.
2. Obedience/Disobedience to the clan leader or chieftain.
An example of this in the Queen Capture section.
3. Multiple challenges to a clan leader, once they have proven themselves, is dishonorable.
4. 'Thin-des le'husuan 'aloon'myin-de/bpi-de gka-de hasou-de paya' ('Learn the gifts of all the sights, or finish in the dance of the fallen gods.')
This saying, taken literally, refers to the mask's electronic eyes, and it advises that one know how to use their mask well, or die. The basic meaning of this rule is to consider every possibility in a hunt, and if you don't you might be dead (or deserve to be). Philosophically speaking, gods could refer to a vague understanding of polytheism, but its widespread meaning throughout the race is the reference to predators that have died in battle.
5. Never lose a fight.
Yautja fight all the time, so it is very difficult to keep this rule, but a warrior who can keep this rule flawlessly...Well, he'd be a Clan leader. This is practically impossible.
The Pure Win, fighting without even achieving a scratch.
7. Those who don't fight for their honor, have no honor.
8. When you die, die in battle during a hunt. A noble death is as honorable as a noble conquest (dying in a clumsy way or due to a fatal fighting mistake is not honorable. It is only honorable to die against a legitimately greater hunter).
9. Dishonorable to be saved from death in a worthy battle by an unknown or lower casted.
Some Yautja of the same caste may develop a close fighting relationship and begin to hunt together. On these occasions, it is honorable to save one another's life, but if this understanding is not present, 'an unknown', or especially if one is saved by someone from a lower caste, this is humiliating. A Yautja may not demand satisfaction for this, humiliation must be direct for a challenge to be initiated.
10. Fighting technique/Prowess/strength vs. clumsiness or weakness
11. Courage vs. cowardice or shame
Songs are not sung about those who show their back to a hunt i.e. retreating in fear or cowardice.
12. A true warrior controls his emotions.
It is dishonorable to show too much of any emotion, mourning for the dead is dishonorable, even one's own family.
Although this rule is stated, I have noticed that Yautja are able to recognize when I am experiencing grief. It may be male chauvinist, but the Yautja partly excuse me from this law because I am a female.
13. Sire many children (explained in marriage/reproduction section).
14. Multiply trophies including battle scars.
15. One can easily kill with a burner, greater honor to kill with a spear, and highest honor to kill bare handed.
16. Difficulty of hunt and/or opponent.
17. The discovery of the first sign of prey during a hunt is honorable.
18. The packs' safety is priority. A Great leader has concern for those that are under him.
This usually means safety from unnecessary danger and only includes the hunt when unblooded predators are involved. The greater the number of surviving Yautja from their Rite of Manhood, the greater honor is due to the chieftain or clan leader who trained them.
19. First blood in a duel is honorable (mentioned in Duel section)
20. One will not take a trophy from something killed for food purposes only.
21. The dishonor of the crushed head.
When a predator dies, its honorable to have an uncrushed skull so that it can be a good trophy for the worthy victor.
It is impossible to list every rule of honor that the Yautja have, honor is one's entire way of life.
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