The Words is the title usually given to the special phrase to which both Ur-Quan factions have an almost ritualistic response, explaining why they do what they do. The Words are usually stated as "Hold! What you are doing to us is wrong! Why do you do this thing?".
The Words were first spoken as a plea by the Mael-Num to the Kohr-Ah as the Kohr-Ah fleet was preparing to "cleanse" the Mael-Num homeworld. Because of the simplicity and clarity of the question, the Kohr-Ah "felt compelled to explain." During the explanation, the Kzer-Za fleet, having slave-shielded the Faz and having heard of the "cleansing" of the Yuptar, arrived to oppose the violent enforcement of the Eternal Doctrine. This encounter marked the first Doctrinal Conflict.
Although only the Kohr-Ah were present at the first uttering of The Words, both the Kohr-Ah and the Kzer-Za respond to the special phrase. The Kohr-Ah response is very notable, delaying the destruction of the speaker of The Words for several minutes and giving many details of the Ur-Quan history. The reaction is so entrenched that the Kohr-Ah will continue the recitation even if the one who spoke The Words protests. On the other hand, the Kzer-Za response is a much shorter summary of their history; however it is not devoid of the same high emotion shown by their Kohr-Ah cousins.
There are only three known instances of someone saying The Words to the Ur-Quan:
- the Mael-Num over twenty-thousand years ago
- the terrified Spathi captain, who was sent to first meet the approaching Kzer-Za fleet, in "a moment of panicked genius"
- The Captain
Sources of information
The Words are available as a conversation option after being learned from either the:
- Arilou Lalee'lay (by asking "Can you give us any more information?" for the second time)
- Safe Ones (by asking "Have there been any developments of significance?" for the third time)
- Pkunk (by asking them "I am still having a little trouble defeating the Ur-Quan. Any advice?") — they say the Words in a slightly different way - "Hold! Why do you do this! What you are doing is wrong!".
In the Role Playing Resource Guide, the places where you can learn the Words are misidentified — the Guide says that the Words may be learned from the Pkunk, the Melnorme (instead of the Arilou) and the Spathi ships (instead of their Ruling Council).
Relevance to the plot
The Words have no effect on gameplay, but are an alternate way of learning the backstory of the Ur-Quan besides purchasing "historical data" from the Melnorme.