Yes, the race that communicates with smell but deals with verbal languages all the time would obviously have sound friendly names, and “Aster” certainly could have volunteered that information. But that’s not what Sydney asked. She asked how to spell the unpronounceable name.

Honestly, races that communicate with scents, what do they do when it’s windy? Presumably all their buildings and spaceships have excellent airflow, and “soundproofing” a room would involve turning on a fan.

If you had an alphabet that represented every possible smell, it would be as much a pain in the ass as non-simplified chinese. Really, it would probably be a combination of glyphs that combine in certain ways. I mean if “Clur” is all those scents at once, then presumably it would be a combination of symbols for “underripe” “kovo” “nut” “moist” “summer” “rain” and “sun” at least. The fact that there’s a phonemeable word for that one specific letter for a language that represents scents is in itself a little odd, not to mention they might run out of combinations of sounds before they covered every possible scent profile.

I do think that if humans ever create either some sort of chimeric human/animal hybrids, like fox or dog people walking around, or probably more likely, some sort of bio-mod that lets people smell with similar sensitivity to canines, it won’t be long before those people start making up new words to cover all the distinct smells out there. Sure, in English right now, we can say something smells like wood, or even a specific kind of wood, but we don’t have the vocabulary to describe how people smell, beyond simple stuff like stale, fresh, acrid, or other words that simply describe the scents we infuse in our soaps and deodorants.

Imagine a bloodhound chimera detective describing how a suspect smelled to his fox chimera sergeant. He wouldn’t say that the guy smelled kind of B.O.-ey and Irish Springy and maybe he ate something with onions. He’d want to describe the specifics of what makes one human smell different from another, and he’d need new vocabulary for it. “He smelled glinty and arrus, traces of flemo and gorgol.” Etc.

Aliens with different senses would have wildly different vocabularies to accomodate for them. Imagine a race that could feel electricity like sharks. There’d be all kinds of words to cover that, and not just “zappy” and “sparky.”

So yeah. Aster should have immediately volunteered her word-speak name.

The Vote Incentive is updated! It’s the same poolside scene as last month’s Varia pic, but it’s been expanded to include 3 more Arc-SWAT ladies, all of whom have short hair on the sides of their heads because it was supposed to be a sidecut theme but I ran out of women with sidecuts. Sans bikini version is over at Patreon.



Double res version will be posted over at Patreon. Feel free to contribute as much as you like!