|Image by Disney-Pixar|
Human and machine hybrids
Variant in model style
Exact lifespan varies
Initially designed as a cheap labour-force, the dae (singular: daeni, plural: dae) were created after The End to assist in designing and building the Dome. The dae are entirely metallic, artificial intelligence, and usually notably robotic. In recent years, the dae have taken on a myriad of other jobs and positions within society. Some dae even claim that they are capable of feeling and processing emotions, or at the very least, very close simulations of them. Using dae technology, people born with serious defects, or those that are terribly injured later in life, have the opportunity to become partially daeni; these are called organic dae, and were once human.
Since the Dome's completion, however, dae have become a very staple part of life within it. The Dome is the only place one will find so many dae in one location, and finding them outside of the Dome is an extremely rare occurrence (and most of those in the Outlands are organic dae). Dae have become rather sophisticated in their programming, and fill many roles that others may not wish to.
Any given daeni can differ from others of its kind in appearance rather immensely. If one can build a chassis in a given shape, they can input a dae operating system in said chassis with relative ease. Some dae may appear more human-like, and this is becoming more and more common as the technologies used to create synthetic hair and skin advance. However, a large majority of the dae still look very much like machines. Currently popular dae models will be more sleek and aerodynamically designed, and some walk, while others hover. The only limitation to a daeni's appearance is imagination.
The first dae are believed to have been built by early Tyrrhenians, in the image of an Other that once existed. At the time, they were highly advanced beings, capable of logical reasoning and comprehending human emotion, among other fabled feats; the full extent of their capabilities at that time are unknown, and the designs have long been lost, as have most accounts of the Other they were designed after. The last working dae from before the End are believed to have all been shut down by their creators, or naturally reached the end of their lifespan, before the End.
Early post-End daeni designs were clunky, and not terribly efficient, the technology hindered by the destruction the End wreaked, and the chaos the planet faced. Their programming was simplistic, directive, and rendered them incapable of independent, intellectual thought. They were programmed to essentially repeat a series of tasks indefinitely, somewhat akin to a basic computer scripting loop.
In contrast to their organic creators, the dae were much more durable and had an easier time tolerating the chaos of the Outlands. They were thusly very well-suited to constructing the Dome, and over time, the Dome's organic construction workers were steadily replaced by dae. Most workers did not mind this, as the harsh conditions of the time-period were hard on them, and had already killed dozens of their fellow workers.
The dae were thus set to working on finishing the construction of the plasma barriers, and setting up the climate controls. Eventually, they also proved useful in maintaining the varying facilities of the Dome, and many became maintenance workers following the Dome's completion. Some also showed a peculiar knack for nurturing and maintaining livestock and crop, and these became the first farmers in the Dome.
Over time, the dae contributed highly valued improvements to the Dome and its overall quality of life. A group of them dug and filled the man-made lake in Eridanus, which later became a part of the Glass Forest, another dae-built landmark. The dae also designed and constructed the Gabriel Memorial Gardens, both a garden, and a memorial cemetery containing the remains of those lost in the tragedy of the End. It was also a daeni that created the blueprints and prototypes for the first airships. Finally, the dae discovered and began harnessing plasma energy, the energy on which magic is thought to run, which has changed how many things operate within the Dome, and altered the course of technological advancement as a whole.
Originally, the dae were legally barred from ever seeing, let alone handling, a weapon. At some point, criminal groups and dissenting organisations within the Dome began equipping their dae helpers with assault weapons, and programming them to act as bodyguards. Despite the initial concern, and resulting uproar, about this move, the dae on the whole have remained the most non-violent race on Tyrrhenia, and will typically not result to lethal force unless given no other alternative.
Each daeni, now, is generally unique and designed individually from its fellows. All fully-robotic daeni are named after Greek letters, and vary in design, equipment, and programmed skills. Some dae may be outfitted with no weaponry at all, while others may have rather the massive arsenal at their disposal; this depends upon their assigned purpose, and the desires of their owner or employer.
While most dae are considered public servants, and perform generalised tasks for the good of the Dome as a whole, there are many that are owned by private organisations, businesses, or even families and individuals. The uppermost class in the Dome are most likely to own one or two of them. Some may have even been customised by their owner, to suit whatever purpose they need the daeni for. Those that are partially organic, in general, are in employ of the United Republic, but some may choose to take on other career paths.
Currently, there are only a few dae known to exist in the Outlands. The rest remain in the Dome.