Porphatys of the Black Snow, a flooded layer of endless winter. In Porphatys, the layer's orbs are separated by millions of miles, adjacent orbs only barely and rarely visible through the clouds of snow, appearing merely as twinkling stars or glittering discs set in the red sky and giving barely any light. Every orb is completely enveloped in a shallow, frigid ocean, with only rare sandbars and rarer oceanic peaks reaching above the surface to give some amount of solid footing. It is on these sandbars that the petitioners of Porphatys are forced to spend their days, crowded shoulder to shoulder, forced into physical contact to replace the social contact they neglected in life. These petitioners, upon seeing any outsider, offer all sorts of gifts in exchange only for being freed. While some have honestly repented their miserly ways, others seek merely escape at any cost, and just as they did in life, hold no intentions of giving away their possessions under any circumstances.
The ocean itself here, like most water on Carceri, is slightly acidic, as is the never-ending black snowfall, both of which can cause harm to the unprotected (1d6 per round of contact with bare skin). The snow can be even more dangerous for those making the long trip from one orb to another, gathering in massive clouds miles thick separated by vicious windstorms that give the occasional clear gap for travel. Of course, the petitioners of Porphatys that embrace their new home over time build up tolerance to this acid in the form of thick patches of chitin, giving the oldest petitioners a distinctly insectile look. These petitioners find travel from island to island much easier, and in fact prefer to spend their time swimming the ocean itself. While they don't go out of their way to avoid others, most prefer a lone lifestyle to the alternative. When encountering such a petitioner, it's best to make no demands nor even requests, for those that near to the nature of Porphatys have a great loathing to favors asked upon their person. As such, conversation with these petitioners is quite difficult indeed; "walking on eggshells" doesn't even begin to describe it.
There are few artificial structures on Porphatys, as the acidic snow and spray of the ocean's gentle waves cause most all to begin to deteriorate almost immediately. Those that do stand in this layer tend to require near constant maintenance and upkeep if not shored up by enchanted means, though even these fail sooner than elsewhere.
- Manual of the Planes, 3rd edition, pp.106-107
- Planes of Conflict - Liber Malevolentiae, pgs.14,23