* Weapons modelled in photo courtesy of AH-Kai at DeviantArt *
Sky-Shard Iron is not native to Xaabos. It is in-fact fragments of a meteor that struck the planet. The very same cataclysmic event that was responsible for creating the Molten Sea thousands of years ago. Even so, it now grows underneath the surface of the planet, centered around those Helsian mines.
A Versatile, yet incredibly difficult metal to work. It is dark in colouring and can not be allowed to cool completely once smelted in to ingots, or when working the metal in to a shape. Once the metal is completely free of heat that is the form that the metal holds – it cannot be altered in any way, shape, or form from there, nor can it be combined with other metals to create an alloy.
The plus-side to these inconveniences is that it is one of the hardest known materials in the galaxy. Ten-fold stronger than titanium, half as light and will not rust, it has a wide range of applications as detailed below:
- A substitute to paper for historical tomes, entire books would be filled with metal sheets as thin as paper and bound in the same material.
- Worked in to tiny filaments and wound around each other while cooling, gradually adding heat to prevent setting, bow-strings were made. Today this process is used to create cables.
- Thin layers of metal would be worked together and wrapped in a final layer, equally thin. The applied heat near the end of this process would allow the metal to be curved in to the shape of a bow, the thin layers allowing the metal to ‘bend’ when cooled and snap back in to place with tremendous force when the arrow is released. A Sky-Shard bow even today, is considered a deadly weapon – capable of punching a hole through almost anything other than Sky-Shard itself.
- Folding the metal over upon itself, can add density and strength. This is often applied for the use of melee weaponry, and the likes of personal armour, bunker walls, and space-ship framing/armour.
Those are the most notable uses for Sky-Shard Iron, but there are many, many more. Ever since the Helsians claimed their independence, they have worked those mines and this metal. Continuously improving their craft to the point where they have discovered a way to bind the metal with certain crystals that grew within their mines – enhancing the weaponry to match modern-day standards (bringing Sky-Shard melee weapons back in to the forefront of Xaabosian culture)