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Would it be possible to use a living organism as unobtainium for interstellar travel? Would it make any sense?

The story I had in mind would use them as the main bad guys seeking vengeance on those who harvest them and use them for their own gains (such as interstellar travel). They’re similar to an amoebic sea like Darwin IV, but a little more complex. They’re sentient and technologically advanced, but other races in the galaxy aren’t entirely aware that they are.

If I use this organism as my antagonists, how could I have them achieve interstellar travel without using themselves, which would make them hypocrites?

I have something in mind, but wasn’t sure if it would make sense. Maybe their technology doesn’t “harm “ them in the process, but the technology of other races do?

Is there any way I could make any of this work?

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  • $\begingroup$ Welcome to worldbuilding. Your question has a lot of unclarities: what is Darwin IV? What is that you have in mind? If you don't explain us, how can we help you? $\endgroup$ – L.Dutch Aug 25 at 18:04
  • $\begingroup$ Darwin IV is a fictional planet in the Darwin IV Universe: speculativeevolution.fandom.com/wiki/Darwin_IV. The thing I had in mind was already said above: "Maybe their technology doesn’t “harm “ them in the process, but the technology of other races do?" I wanted to know if this would work or not. $\endgroup$ – astillround7hief Aug 25 at 18:08
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    $\begingroup$ Of course you can use a living organism as exotic matter, provided it is actually made of exotic matter. $\endgroup$ – AlexP Aug 25 at 18:39
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    $\begingroup$ Star Trek: Discovery’s tardigrades and underlying mycelial network seems relevant here. $\endgroup$ – Dubukay Aug 25 at 18:49
  • $\begingroup$ This is pretty much what I was thinking of. Thanks for the link! $\endgroup$ – astillround7hief Aug 25 at 21:17
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Reminds me of Nibbler from Futurama. The little guy was sh**ing dark matter or something like that.

Another example is the new Star Trek Series, where they had some kind of creature used for their spore- drive.

I guess the second one serves your needs better. It has some ability needed for FTL travel.

So you could pretty much do the same thing. Make your creatures transdimensional. So they have the power to travel the universe without the need of a ship, but they can be used to hook on a ships engines in order to make the whole ship move faster than light.

You wrote that the other species don't know that they are sentient, so they would not try to ask the creature nicely to guard their ship, they would force it, maybe torture it in the process. So when they travel by themselves or with their own ships, they know where they want to go and they will not be in pain. But when the others want to use their fellow specimen to travel the universe, they put them in terrible pain.

The necessary kidnapping of the creatures is reason enough for war, the torture included in the process they are used for is even more.

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  • $\begingroup$ Neat! This is the justification for war I had trouble developing. Now, I can move forward and develop the story more from here. Thank you all for your help! $\endgroup$ – astillround7hief Aug 27 at 15:09

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