Joiner, or pejoratively bughugger and bugslut, was the name given to the non-Killiks who were absorbed into the Killik hive mind. This was caused by being exposed to the large amounts of pheromones that the Killiks secreted that changed a person's brain structure.
It was believed that the process began when Killik pheromones were introduced into an organic being where they altered the basic structure of the corpus callosum. This change allowed a Joiner to receive signal impulses directly from the brains of a Killik. The key transfer agent was through all forms of auras such as heat, electric, magnetic, and chemical.
Initially, Joiners retain many characteristics of their own personality, as well as some sense of individual identity. They often described the relationship as symbiotic, feeling they gain more from the Joining than the Killiks. Over time, their personalities become more and more subsumed, until they cannot conceive of any existence away from the hive mind. In turn, a nest also absorbs the knowledge, skills and personality traits of its Joiners. A single Joiner rarely changes a nest's nature, but a nest that Joins an army of warriors may become war-like, and a nest that Joins a party of explorers may gain a degree of curiosity and wanderlust. It is possible to medically reverse the Joining process even in the later stages, as was the case with Jaina Solo and Zekk. However, most Joiners–even those experiencing the initial transformation–refuse to willingly submit to the procedure.
It was not revealed whether the Joiners were unjoined from the Killiks after the Colony was put into disarray after the death of Lomi Plo and UnuThul's capture by the Galactic Alliance. At least some of them, such as Jaina Solo and Zekk, were unjoined.
People who were resistant to the Joining process
Races whose members became Joiners
- Ishi Tib
- Yam'rii (otherwise known as Huk)
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