September 22, 2009
Jannah, as recently revealed, is the homeworld planet of the Sovices and their now-extinct creator species, the Janni (Yes, yes, Janni-Jannah, not creative I know but then “dirt” is a wierd name for a planet too). It’s a very strange world, and only exists the way it does by sheer fluke of it’s conception.
When the materials that make Jannah were gathering in the wake of it’s star forming, they gathered in a specific way, one that is so unlikely as to make Jannah about as unique and unlikely as, as Dr Manhattan would put it, air spontaneously turning into gold.
The actual composition of it geologically isn’t that interesting, but when Jannah came together, water vapour gathered in certain areas only, and not at all in others. As a result, Jannah formed with clouds entirely covering parts of it’s surface and other parts left entirely open to the sun’s radiation. Like earth it has a magnetosphere to shield it from stellar radiation, but it has no ozone layer to guard the lifeforms on it from UV radiation.
As the planet aged, this meant that parts of the surface remained frozen and others remained in blistering heat. Between these two, where the clouds started to clear and the light started to break in, vast lines of steam and condensation arose, typically miles in depth but occasionally very slender as seen in page 204/B3-60. These regions were known as the Hotland, Iceland, and Menerav Lines, as English would translate it. Though Jannah retains oceans of boiling and frozen temperatures, the surface is almost entirely sandy desert, scorching in some places and permafrosted in others. Solid ground exists predominantly in the equator and at the poles (The rocks in 204 are actually Scuttle Shells).
The moisture fluctuation in the Menerav lines isn’t by itself enough to ever shift the regions, but Jannah also has a moon, one that rotates around the planet 419 times each year. The gravity of the moon gradually wears at the tenuous grip of the clouds inbetween the lines, and every ten years or so there is an event known as a “climate shift”, where the Iceland clouds rapidly, and abruptly, move and reorganise into equilibrium. For many early lifeforms on Jannah, this was effectively an extinction event, as Hotland becomes Iceland and vice versa.
The only place remotely safe from the shifts is closer to the equator, where planetary rotation thinned the clouds and spread them out, to a level more familiar here on earth. It’s still harsh, because of the lack of ozone and the storms inherent in the moisture levels, but it’s much more amicable for life overall, and this is where it began.
As life evolved, it gradually left the equator, having exhausted the available food supplies, and adapted to living in each of the regions. The equator was left almost lifeless for millions of years following this migration. In the Icelands, the Tundran Nosorogs and Berg Sharks evolved. In the Hotlands, the Quad Lizards and Dune Hounds developed. And in the Meneravs, the Scuttle Shells and the Soar Bills came into being. But the species most interesting for our story, is the species that would become the Janni.
Unlike other species, the Janni developed to survive in the contrasted environments of all three regions. In the Icelands, they developed rapidly growing hair to form fur layers to insulate their body heat. In the Hotlands, they shed this fur quickly and every pore opened to release their heat. Like many species, they also developed UV insulation to survive in the rays of the sun, a kind of natural sunscreen. These adaptations allowed them to cover the planet as humans did, and eventually they were the species that returned to the equator and made it their permanent home.
Janni scientists uncovered evidence that at one time the Nosorogs and Quad Snakes (In their time, a highly antagonistic pair) were able to interbreed, and believe these hybrids were their ancestors. They eventually uncovered their earliest relatives in the species, the first pairing to interbreed, and in Janni culture they’ve become something of a Romeo & Juliet couple.
So once again I’ve brought science into a world full of dragons, beholders, and magic. And this has been the story of possibly the most unlikely climate to ever exist, but also one of the most fascinating.