A Hide-Stain (or Stain) is a form of body modification made by inserting ink into the external layer of the hide, to alter the pigment. Bizaki have always been the primary stainer’s in Ramaxia, due to strict membership rules designed by the Bizakaki.
Staining began when Bizaki miners and excavators (Bizaraks) began etching designs and names on their arms to allow for identification of their bodies, in the case of dying along the Artery. As the Artery came full circle, former bizarak were conscripted to work on dome construction, where hide-staining evolved into more of an art than a means of identification.
In the era of Second Gen, Marixi began to request artistic Bizaki to cut patterns into the back of the bald heads. To make the design come alive, Bizaki would dust the decorative wounds with dirtoxian-coal. Modern Marixi continue to stain their heads, doing so only when they’ve achieved their desired rank. Marixi head-stains indicate lineage, attitude, values, loved ones, or their station and status within the Fleet.
Hide staining of any sort outside the laboring or warrior class was considered poor form in the eras of the Second, Fifth, and Sixth Gens. When the Ninth came of age, other castes acquired stains as a kind of counter-cultural expression. Among the Tenth, stains weren’t as popular, with many opting for designs they could hide. Citizens of the Eleventh Gen are liberal in their attitudes about hide-staining, and consider it an art form.