Full Item Description
Pantarbe is a vitrious green-gray stone that has moderate hardness and chemical resistances. It is easily carved and shaped, but has irregular cleavage. The higher the purity of the ore, the more pronounced the glassy sheen is. Metallic Pantarbe resembles vitrious iron with a green hue.
Pantarbe is a foundation material for the Cry-Of-Freedom RP in the moderated forum (pending). The material has always been present and it is the entire reason that there is a setting composed of drifing sky islands and airships flitting from one to another. Like hydrogen and helium, this material exists to create lighter than air ships, but unlike zeppelins and hot air balloons, these craft cannot be destroyed by a well placed arrow or a careless match.
Pantarbe is a very light material, but in direct sunlight, it does something rather amazing, it floats. Given the purity of the ore and the mass and the amount of sunlight reaching the stone, a pebble might drift around like a hailstone in slow motion while thick high purity slabs might drift up into the air heedless of silly things like gravity and physics. Also, the larger the piece and higher the purity, the longer the stone in question will hang in the air even after sunlight is no longer present, IE night or cloud cover.
The ore can be crushed and smelted, though at some difficulty, once freed of the stone matrix, it will fly away if not worked in darkness. The resultant metal, also called Pantarbe or Worked Pantarbe, is rigid and strong, but lacking in flexibility. It is highly efficient in retaining solar power making it the ideal material for constructing airships. A sufficiently large airship constructed with Purified Pantarbe can stay in the air overnight without fear of crashing to the ground. Smaller craft must beech somewhere.
In rare cases, nodules of almost pure Pantarbe can be found, so long basking in sunlight (IE Space) that though they have lost their floating attribute, they now emit sunlight. These stones can be used as currency like precious gems, and as tools to keep airships in the air even in dark conditions. Unlike normal pantarbe, sunstone is very brittle and cannot be shaped. Attempts to do so generally cause the stone in question to break into worthless chunks.
A Note on Mining
Pantarbe ore is important as it keeps the islands of the sky floating. If too much ore is mined from an island, the mass of the island countered the lift of the ore and begins to sink. These islands will either stabilize at a lower altitude when their bouyancy stabilizes, or will slowly crash into the sea. Thus while important, mining the ore is a double edged sword.