Serpentis

Sehr-pen-tees

Serpentis is a major planet in the Shyrofor System and is considered the capital planet of the system. This planet is a major hub of trade and travel and contains more racial diversity than any other in the universe. This medium-small planet is tidal locked, meaning the same face of the rocky body permanently faces its suns as it revolves. It has two moons, Ciloenth and Alvoria. Serpentis is the smallest planet in its system. It's the little sibling of two very large, habitable rocky planetary bodies, Soros and Beross. Serpentis is a circumbinary planet meaning that it orbits two stars instead of one.  

Hardy Lifeforms

Serpentis is home to many sturdy lifeforms. Life on Serpentis is tough and a constant battle. The planet is home to two races that are closely related: Shyr and Sefora. Both appear remarkably similar aside from a few physical and physiological differences. These two races dominate the planet in terms of population and are the faces of Serpentis.  

A Bizarre, Tidally Locked World

Day and... Dark

On one face, Serpentis experiences perpetual day-time followed by a streak of darkness as the planet's largest moon, Ciloenth, eclipses the suns. The movement of Ciloenth has been used by natives as a calendrical clock and this large moon also creates the natural climate shifts throughout the year that split the seasons. Ciloenth's influence on the planet is crucial. As it blocks the light of the suns, Serpentis has a chance to cool its sun-baked surface and allow for less catastrophic rainy weather during the spring and summer.   Opposite of the substellar point is the cold, dark world of the anti-stellar face, otherwise known as the Dark Zone. Originally it was believed that no life existed there aside from the demons that plague the region. However, with the emergence of the Ny’kor, it is clear that life can and does exist on the dark side of the planet. Little else is known however due to the inability to conduct thorough, let alone proper, research.  

Climate Rings

The sun-kissed face, or substellar face, of Serpentis is unique in its climates and geographical regions. It resembles an eyeball with its varying rings of climates and biomes. It isn’t known whether the Dark Zone has climate rings but theories suggest that it does.   The substellar point, or the point at which the planet is closest to its suns, is a merciless, rocky landscape of canyons and fissures. There is no surface water here, instead, inhabitants rely on the condensation of geyser mists and subterranean rivers that lie deep down in the canyons. Many creatures here are capable of flight or are excellent climbers in order to reach the waters. In addition, the substellar point has areas in which vast lakes of magma are exposed to the air. Smoke and walls of heat lift up which replenishes the atmosphere.   Surrounding the substellar point are vast oceans of sand and rock. The deserts here are mercilessly dry and almost never experience rainfall. Instead, organisms rely on the rare oases that dot the arid landscape. These oases are fueled by springs rising from the subterranean waters. Just outside the substellar point, overlapping the sandy deserts, is a fiery scar known as Nagis Keb, or “serpent’s fire.” This region was named after the Nagis Keb event that led to the fiery’s area’s creation and the widely believed origin of the demon spawn that plague the world. Nagis Keb is home to an interesting cast of characters from simple organisms like thermophiles to complex organisms like a False Sefora known as Kebiil.   Sands give way to steppes and scrublands which experience little rainfall throughout the year and life here is rather sparse. Steppes soften into prairies and woodlands which boom with life in the spring and summers. Rolling hills dotted with occasional woods are home to a variety of wildlife and make for excellent farmlands to raise livestock and produce.   Grasses and forests develop more rainfall closer to the diameter of the planet where instead of prairies and woods there are thick jungles, rainforests, mountainous zones, and expansive savannas. Much of the planet’s rainfall is produced by these forests. In this particular band exists Serpentis’ seas and massive rivers. A variety of wetlands such as bogs, marshes, swamps, and fens saturate the area. These wetlands provide an abundance of nutrient-rich water needed for creatures to thrive and is dispersed throughout the planet. Over the span of centuries, the river flows have cut into the ancient volcano-formed mountains, leaving behind carved pillars of rock that kiss the sky above.   Past the jungles are temperate dense forests which rise into chilly highlands where boreal forests, or taigas, exist in great swathes. The biodiversity here is less than that of the tropics and continues to lessen in colder areas such as the tundras. The tundras are cold regions of simple plants like grass that become covered in thick layers of ice and snow in the winters.   Beyond the tundras lie the glaciers which feed into the planet’s waterways each spring and summer. The glaciers exist as great sheets of ice covering immense stretches of land and as pockets of ice that carve into the mountains bordering the Dark Zone. These mountains, especially the tallest of them all, are referred to as the High Mountain Ridge. These colossal volcanic peaks help prevent hellish storms that would exist normally on a tidally locked world and also act as a barrier against the monsters that live in the Dark Zone.  

Dark Zone and Demons

The anti-stellar face, or Dark Zone, is the side of the planet that never sees sunlight. It is a cold, dark world previously thought to be devoid of life. The Dark Zone is full of unsettling myths and legends, including the legend about an evil Ancient being frozen at the anti-stellar point, the point of the planet farthest from the sun. The current known native lifeforms that exist in the Dark Zone are the Ny’kor, or Night Dwelling Shyr.   Proceeding the Nagis Keb event, demons were said to have populated the planet but were driven back to the Dark Zone where they now reside. The demon spawn are very ill adapted to the intense UV light that bombards the planet and therefore are scarcely seen on the substellar face. This changes however during the winters when darkness befalls the entire planet. Demons pour out of the Dark Zone in great numbers. This has led to the rise of the Demon Guard that fight off the monsters and safeguard Serpentis’ citizens. Other tools have been used in the war against the demon spawn, namely UV barriers placed outside cities and smaller municipalities to deter the photophobic abominations. UV barriers are also installed on the SkyWay that connects most towns and cities on the substellar face. In present times, officials have observed the numbers of demons steadily climb over the past few decades.  

Seasons

Spring. The season of renewal. Spring is a pleasant time on most of the substellar face. As Ciloenth breaks away from its eclipse over the suns, the warmth of the binary stars warms the atmosphere and surface and returns liquid water to the winding rivers, seas, and aquifers through the melting of the glacier and tundra ice. With newly abundant water and rising temperatures, clouds begin to swell in the atmosphere. Much of the world experiences a long wet season that graduates in intensity from rain showers to strong storms. The deserts and substellar point virtually never see rain, but occasional bursts may appear in the outer edges of the sands. Deserts start to quickly absorb heat and the rock of the substellar point begins the process of releasing gases into the atmosphere.   During the endless, sun-baked summer, temperatures rise from comfortably warm to sweltering. Desert life is intense and the substellar point reaches temperatures not suitable for life at the surface. Creatures that exist at the substellar surface live in the shaded canyons and fissures. As dry, hot air rises from the deserts, winds sweep over the substellar face toward the Dark Zone, carrying with them sands and particulates that season the land and seas with fertilizer. This nurtures plant growth and feeds the phytoplankton that enrich the networks of seas, lakes, and rivers. Tundras are temperate and cool. Water ways are full with glacial melt and rains are fairly regular in the more tropical and mild climate bands. At summer’s peak, the substellar point is at its most hot and arid time. The temperature contrasts between the stellar poles are high, but thanks to the High Mountain Ridge, intense storms due to these contrasts are eased.   Fall couldn't come soon enough. Ciloenth is visible again in the sky at this point. But its influence isn't felt until it begins to overlap the suns. As less and less light touches the face of the planet, temperatures gradually begin to cool. Moisture in the air ceases to build as less evaporation occurs. This marks the dry season. In late fall, ice returns to the tundras and glaciers thicken with snow.   Winter officially arrives as Ciloenth completely eclipses the suns, plunging the two faced world into a planetwide darkness. Residual heat from the substellar point fuels occasional showers that turn to snow in the coldest regions and Dark Zone. Glaciers have frozen and the water ways are reduced through the cool dry season. It’s a long, dark winter. Spring can’t come soon enough.  

Substellar Point and Tidal Heating

The substellar point is vital to the stability of the planet. Its rocky landscape and lakes of magma are constantly exposed to sunlight and air which results in evaporation of rock and production of gases that are released into the air. This ultimately created the atmosphere and continues to replenish it. The atmosphere allows the planet to distribute heat globally. This process prevents the planet from experiencing hellish storms caused by intense temperature differences. The Dark Zone is warmed to a moderate degree thus narrowing the temperature contrast between it and the substellar face. Thanks to the Dark Zone, a natural air conditioner, and Ciloenth’s yearly passage over the suns, Serpentis is able to maintain livable conditions without the worry of developing a runaway greenhouse effect or constant catastrophic wind storms.  

Tidal Heating

Planets that harbor life require some protection from their parent star(s) in the form of a magnetic field. Serpentis does not rotate like most planets, so instead Serpentis’ magnetic field is produced through tidal heating. Because Serpentis revolves around two F-type stars, which produce high amounts of UV light and heat, Serpentis experiences a great amount of tidal heating of the mantle, which ironically means that it is capable of cooling faster in times of no tidal heating. This allows the development of a strong magnetic field. The heating and cooling of the core aids in convection which allows volcanoes to form and the crust to be rebuilt as it is worn overtime.  

Circadian Rhythms

Because Serpentis does not rotate and therefore does not experience sunrises or sunsets, creatures of Serpentis do not rely on a setting sun to dictate their circadian rhythms. Instead, there is a rise and fall of energy as the moon Alvoria orbits the planet. Much like how moons push and pull the tides, Alvoria pushes and pulls the network of energy that circulates throughout the planet. As the energy levels begin to drop, creatures feel tired and settle down for sleep. At “low tide” most creatures are asleep. As the energy levels begins to rise, creatures return to a wakeful state. At “high tide” most creatures are awake. This high and low energy tide effects all creatures on Serpentis. Non-natives and off-worlders eventually will become accustomed to the change.  

Additional Natural Functions

Plants and Sky are Blue

Plant life on this planet is in fact blue thanks to the high amounts of blue and UV light that the suns produce. Plants exhibit a much paler blue closer to the substellar point (although plants here are few and far between) while plants closer to the Dark Zone take on a darker blue or even appear black. Plants will turn black during the winters as the light of the suns is blocked out for a great deal of time.   In addition, because of the intense blue and UV light waves, and gases that make up the atmosphere, the sky appears a milky blue. The sky color will change slightly throughout the year as one star passes over the other.  

Bioluminescence

Many organisms, both plant and animal, have enlisted the use of bioluminescent bacteria. Bioluminescence is an important tool that comes into play during the substellar winters and may be ever present on the Dark Zone. Animals use bioluminescence as a form of communication. Some species of Sefora and Shyr, like Amzor and Ny’kor, also use it. During the winters, plants use bioluminescence to attract pollinators and seed disperses in the darkness. Jungles and rainforests are especially beautiful with the various forms of glow that light up the dark.  

Mountain Formations

Serpentis lacks tectonic activity. Instead of friction and heat being caused by rotation, the planet’s core and mantle is warmed via tidal heating. Because of the lack of tectonic plates, volcanoes that form remain in the same place which raises the crust as magma swells upward, cools, and repeats. Enormous mountains form from these volcanoes, such as those that border the Dark Zone known as the High Mountain Ridge. Some volcanoes can be particularly dramatic as new magma bursts through centuries of cooled and hardened magma layers. Serpentis’ mountains offer some of the most fertile soil which is taken advantage of by the Shyr and Sefora who build terraces in steep terrain to cultivate rice.  

Subterranean Pockets and Oceans

At the surface, Serpentis does not appear to have much water. However, while the planet has little water reaching the surface, much of its liquid water is located in colossal subterranean oceans that exist far beneath the crust. In addition to these underground oceans, many air pockets formed in the crust thanks to the low gravity and outward flow of energy that gentle lifts the planetary rock upward. Beneath the outer layer, there are extensive networks of caves and caverns which offered refuge for life to hide during the Nagis Keb event.   Waters within and connected to the seas and oceans bear a subtle milky blue glow. This glow is produced by a rare crystalline mineral known as oxi, or Serpentian Salt. It is not sodium chloride. Oxi grows in vast deposits at or near the ocean floor, out of reach of most organisms, and occasionally appears at the surface in small concentrated pockets around the edges of major bodies of water.   It should be noted that many legends and myths come from the deep seas of Serpentis due to the variety of terrifying marine life that takes the lives of many sea-goers. Serpentians avoid travel through deep waters, and, because of the dangers, research into what exists in the deep is extremely difficult and hazardous to conduct.  

Relations with Other Worlds

Ethiea

Serpentis and Ethiea go many centuries back. Relations with these “alien intruders” originally was shaky and unpredictable. However, thanks greatly to their shared history of the Ancients and cultural similarities, Serpentis and Ethiea were able to form a close relationship that has held fast over the course of millennia. Serpentis and Ethiea are both to thank for the advancements in technology across the known universe. These two planets import and export goods between one another quite frequently. Possibly more than any other planets. All in all, Serpentis really likes Ethiea.  

Asira

Relations with the Asirans are stable and peaceful. Asira is looked upon for a great deal of inspiration in a range of areas from Kor’tek, otherwise known as Spirit Mekhos, weapons, and general technology. Because Asira was discovered and integrated into the known universe in a much later time, Serpentis is not nearly as involved with Asira as it is with Ethiea. Many Serpentians enjoy visiting Asira for the Cindic Games.

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Warning
This planet is registered as a dangerous place to live and visit due to the demon plague and hostile wildlife. Travel at your own risk.
Alternative Name(s)
Serp, “Eyeball Planet”
Type
Planet
Included Organizations
Owning Organization
Inhabiting Species
Native Races
Shyr
Sefora
  Official Languages
Shyrven
Common
  Year Length: 368.48 days
Spring Length: 67 days
Fall Length: 67 days
Summer Length: 184 days (185 every other year)
Winter Length: 50 days
  Atmosphere Color: milky blue Plants Color: blue, purple, black Water Color: pale blue, subtle glow   Moons
Ciloenth
Alvoria
  Neighboring Bodies
Eternal Pair
Beross
Soross
  Notes
  • Tidal-locked planet
  • Climate rings
  • Does not have days
  • Plants turn black in the winter and are black in the cold rings closest to the Dark Zone
  • Winters are dark and cold planet-wide
  • Instead of conventional seas and oceans, much of Serpentis’ ocean water is subterranean
  Points of Interest
Dark Zone
High Mountain Ridge
Nagis Keb
SkyWay
Substellar Point
Subterranean Oceans
  Major Cities
Thess
Oringul

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