Tantalum is a rare, blue-grey metal that is found deep within the chasms of Ferchiun*. Immune to all but the strongest acids, if more had heard of it would be more sought after. It is nearly as hard as adamantine and holds an edge equally as well. Those few who believed such a tale did not return from their quest to gather any, or if they did, it was not to the homes from which they came.
Swordbiters are parasites. They are long, thin and silver, and digest metal, somewhat like rust monsters, but smaller and more insidious. They resemble stick insects, but when they cling to metal they are very well camouflaged, and one can be biting your sword for a week before you notice it. They cannot be removed by hand, as they are very strong, but if the blade is inserted into fire they will leap off to escape the flames. Sometimes, old treasure hoards are infested with them, and the first glimpse you get of the "glittering" weapons is a pile of rusted swords encrusted with these thin silvery insects.