Thought-speak is the way Andalites communicate since they have no mouths. It is a language that almost all species can understand. It is not quite telepathy, as beings using thought-speak communicate through universal mind symbols rather than actual thoughts; however, it is like telepathy in that there is no sound being transmitted or received. There are two different types of thought-speak: open and closed. Open thought-speak is where you broadcast what you're thinking to everyone, while closed thought-speak is where you communicate to one person or a selected few. In the Animorphs books, thought speak is represented using the characters < and >, to differentiate it from normal speech, which is represented using quotations.
In Book #24 The Suspicion, Cassie recognizes Ax's thought-speak voice, "which meant he was probably in his normal body." This suggests that you may sound different in different morphs and everyone's thought-speak voice is as distinguishable or more from a sound producing voice. Many other aliens communicate by thought-speak. The Animorphs can also communicate in thought-speak, but only in a morph as shown in a few books where Ax has talked to the others via thought speak, although he was human at the time. There are also limits on thought-speak, such as distance. (Unless using a Mirrorwave call.) For example, in Book #2: The Visitor, while Tobias was on the roof of Chapman's house, Rachel did not hear his Thought-speak in the basement. In Book #17: The Underground, Rachel couldn't Thought-speak past an estimated 150 feet underground as a mole. But, In Book #23: The Pretender, Tobias speaks to a hawk 100 yards away and assumes it can hear him, even though it can't understand him. In Book #40: The Other, Gafinilan-Estrif-Valad states that he can use thought speak with his since-childhood friend as long as they are on the same planet, though the exact words are unclear the "sound" helps him know Mertil-Iscar-Elmand is living.
- <I'll bet you ten dollars she says, "Let's do it",> Marco said quickly.
- Rachel turned her head toward Marco. <Let's....Go for it.>
- <Oh man!>Marco complained. <She cheated.>
-Marco teasing Rachel in thought-speak, from The Change
Use of thought-speechEdit
Thought-speak is used by those in morph, contemporary Andalites, Leerans, Iskoort, Mercora, the Helmacron, Garatrons (who have an extremely fast thought-speak), the Ellimist (as an Andalite), and the Crayak. It is also used between both Controllers and their Yeerk or Ixcila and their host.