Yup. Llamu. Nope, it’s not a typo. Llamu, or the plural “llamu,” (yes, it’s the same), are an indigenous animal on the planet Persis, where our book EMERALD KEEP is set. See, here’s how it happened.
The settlers that came to Persis generations ago traveled with livestock embryos so they could, when they found a hospitable planet, have a source of food and fiber. Alpaca and sheep were some of the animals in the library of genetic material, and sheep couldn’t survive the harsh desert climate. Alpaca could. (Hey. It’s our world, we can bend science how we want to.) One of the native species reminded the settlers of llamas and alpaca, and thus they became llamu – large animals, bred for their placid personalities and ability to pull heavy carts full of cargo.
Like all animals native to Persis, llamu have the characteristic long proboscis with which they can dig below the ever-present layer of sand to the moisture-rich moss plants (similar to ice plants but without chlorophyll).
Now, those of you who have been reading us for a little while will know we love to do our research. While doing said research, we like to travel, take lots of photographs, and wander around. In the course of a writers retreat with our organization, Writer Zen Garden, (which, shameless plug, is open to anyone over 18 to join and has an online forum with members from around the world), we happened upon a farm in Utah that had livestock.
For the record, and to once and for all end the discussion,
And because I love you, Dear Reader, here are the links for the Writer Zen Garden: