Written as a public access exploration by the Cryptognostic Society
As is the case in most realms of reality, normal topography deals with materials existing in sustainable temperatures (around 24°C or 75°F), be it soil, sand, rock, or even water. It might even imply gasses as in the case of our Astral Sea or the Elemental Plane of Air. One very special case that needs to be discussed, however, is the Elemental Plane of Fire, home of the fire elementals, the Efreet, and the exotic Salamandrae.
As it’s obvious, this elemental plane deals with creatures and environments exposed to the primal fire energy, which irradiates an intense amount of heat perpetually. As a result, the land itself averages at around 461°C to 861°F at a standard atmospheric pressure. All creatures living here have adapted as a result, being able to comfortably live in what is, for us, one of the most hostile environments imaginable. What does this imply then for the materials in this plane, constantly exposed and shaped by this world’s heat and fauna?
Well, research (as the one conducted by RHL and published by Memorious Ink) shows that this elemental plane is constantly reshaping and transforming from and into a complicated system of tunnels, caves, shallow lakes, and geysers. This happens mainly because of two reasons: 1) The malleability of the main elements composing this plane’s soil (metals and salts) when exposed to such temperatures, and 2) the feeding habits of the plane’s most prominent and remarkable creatures: fire snakes. Both phenomena can be described and understood as part of the same vital cycle.
As some metals exist at a constant liquid state due to the plane's nature, releasing fumes and particles into the heated atmosphere, fire snakes are lured to these puddles and veins in between the quasi-molten rock to feed themselves. They do this by heating their durable fangs to carve the rock as one might bite into a particularly hardened piece of bread (perhaps with more ease and grace), leaving trails and paths behind. This process, multiplied by the thousands or millions of fire snakes living within a certain terrain means constant terramorphing into all sorts of intricate patterns.
Contrary to what one might think, coming from a far more “stable” plane (at least, materially), the intelligent creatures living in this plane do not see this cycle as hurtful or unnatural to the environment. In fact, there are some that suggest that it’s a particular trait that has shaped the philosophy and world-view of the Efreet, choosing to live life as an organized force against constant change.
As a side note, many environmental questions have been raised by our researchers about this plane’s stability, mainly dealing with questions like “how sustainable is an ecosystem with such a high constant thermic energy?” Research, however, suggests that given the primordial flame’s ubiquitous influence within the plane, this temperature is, in fact, the thermic balance of the land, and does not pose any danger to lifeforms. Except, of course, foreign ones.