An ice flower firework is a low explosive pyrotechnic device used to temporarily mesmerize viewers.

Background[edit | edit source]

Little is known about ice flower fireworks other than that they are very rare, with only a few remaining in existence, and they were created in 14th century China. Artie believes that his use of one would greatly upset Mrs. Frederic were she to find out he had done so, and he cautions Myka and Pete not to inform her.[1]

How it Works[edit | edit source]

The pyrotechnic material is housed in a paper or pasteboard tube or casing filled with the combustible material. Once lit, the aerial shell rises to a height of about a two-story house, at which point it explodes in a spinning, multi-colored pattern that hovers. The light pattern triggers a feedback loop in the optic nerve that mesmerizes the viewer for approximately 10 minutes, so they can't take their eyes off it as long as it's still burning.[1] The viewer suffers short term memory loss. Artie, Pete, and Myka wore special goggles in order not to be affected.

Real World Connections[edit | edit source]

A catherine-wheel-styled firework in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico on Christmas day.

The ice flower strongly resembles a "Catherine wheel" style of firework, but without the standard frame mounting that keep these displays close to the ground. Several cultures in the modern world retain stories of colored lights being used to mesmerize. See for reference the legends surrounding the Native American Indian god, Kokopelli.

Extra Info[edit | edit source]

  • Lights which cause memory loss were mentioned in Resonance, perhaps a reference to the Ice Flower.

References[edit | edit source]

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