Injèr'cál'merin, or just plain "Lantern" in common tongue, is a plant mostly
found in deserts. It has adapted itself to the hot and dry climate of these
places, so that it is one of the most common flowers in certain deserts. The
Lantern has a close relation to the Purple Lantern,
or "Arryi", which lives only in certain unique
climates. Whereas the Purple Lantern is a rarity, the common Lantern is one of
those plants which does not attract too much attention by travellers. It has
never been regarded as one of the most beautiful plants, but at least a poet
named Frigord the Weird once composed a poem
about it. Until this very day travellers still laugh about that poem, since it
shows exactly what the plant does; it makes things look more beautiful, and
Frigord certainly experienced that while
writing his poem.
The Injèr'cál'merin grows to about one
ped tall, its size depending
on the conditions it is living in. Because the Lantern uses the scant moisture
of the desert, it will grow taller when situated near a
watersource and smaller when in the midst of
a patch of dry land. The Lantern looks like a small patch of grass with some
longer stems protruding from it. These stems are full of smaller branches which
make the plant look bigger than it really is. These smaller branches are the
main source of water for the Lantern, as they
use their own drought to suck moisture in from the
air around them. Unlike its cousin, the Purple
Lantern, the Injèr'cál'merin does not have very long roots, so in times of
extreme frost there is a great chance that the plant will perish. This however
is often countered by the fact that the seeds from the Lantern do usually
survive the freezing winter, so that in springtime, these seeds can flourish and
become new Lanterns.
From about a half ped up,
small flowers hang from the stem; they exist of three or four petals, with
curled edges, resembling lanterns. (For a proper idea how it looks like, look at
the picture from the arryi.) The petals seem to
be made of parchment, bleak and frail. This in account of the drought they have
to endure, these petals do not rely too much on moisture. One Lantern usually
has about ten to twenty flowers, and they are seen through most of the year,
except in winter, when the plant resembles a skeleton more than a plant because
all the flowers are gone and the only thing remaining are the stems. - Unlike
its cousin the Purple Lantern, which flowers have
the ability to survive the extreme frost.
The plant blooms in spring, when there is the most moisture in the
air, it then sucks up as much
water as it can, so that it might survive the
following dry summer, autumn and winter. This is why the plant seems completely
dry all through the summer, because it is surviving almost solely on
water it had amassed during the spring. When
it has had too little moisture, its flowers wither and fall to the warm desert
As mentioned before, the Lantern is a true desertflower, so it
will be encountered in almost every desert in our world. It has been sighted at
the Ráhaz-Dáth desert in southern
Sarvonia, but is also known to grow near
the Stone Fields of Peat. Almost
everywhere where drought is a normal occurrence one can encounter this plant. It
has been tried to transfer the plant to a more normal climate, but then a
strange thing happens: the plant starts gathering moisture, but when no drought
is encountered, it bursts its stems, the whole plant seems to crack and burst,
and soon the plant will lie lifelessly on the ground.
The Injèr'cál'merín is one of those plants not known for any
beneficial attributes, but it does have its uses. The petals of the flowers are
a treat for the tongue and when chewed relieve the mind somewhat. The person who
eats it will feel a bit light-headed for the next couple of hours, in which
everything appears nicer and better than it would otherwise seem to be. We have
reason to assume that the poet who wrote the complimentary poem about this plant
had at least consumed two whole plants to get to the state of mind he was in.
The Lantern is not a very remarkable plant, a bit ugly actually,
certainly not appeasing to the eye, and certainly not the stuff of legends.
There is however one thing very unusual about this plant, namely, the poem
“Petals of a Lantern” by the poet Frigord the
Weird. It seems that the poet had become enamoured by the plant and he
devoted an entire poem to it. It was only after the “usage” of the plant was
discovered that the poem began to make any sense. The poem itself is not one fit
for legends as its metrical form is completely inconsistent. This however shows
in full colours the effect that this plant can have on even the best poet:
Petals of a Lantern
A myriad of colour
Informs the perfect shape;
A hundred blending hues to form
A lovely woven cape.
The beauty of the light,
It’s holding me in awe;
It is the thing I love the most;
Amazing what I saw.
As touched by holy rain,
The petals are so bright;
I can’t believe my eyes no more,
I’m crippled by its might.
Lost in that one view,
begone is woe, despair.
A ray of sun in darkening times,
This flower oh so fair.
Awakening Earth 1667 a.S.
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