Formed entirely of shadowstuff, Ranunculus passes through matter and living things. While objects are unaffected by its passing, living creatures, when struck, are stunned and descend instantly into madness, effectively removing them from any battle. Upon spoken command, Ranunculus will instantly return to its owner’s hand.
Some parallel worlds have different time-flows, like the fabled dwelling-places of the elves: those who visit them under the hill for a night return to find that years have passed in this world. Perhaps it is the gate leading between the worlds which causes the alteration. If a gate were 'misaligned', the shift from '| |' to '| \' or '| /' as it were would lead to that difference, much as a light-beam split and bent by a prism ends up taking a longer path. There might even be a mathematical function linking degree of misalignment to alteration of time-rate.