While ash rot remains somewhat of a mystery, it does seem clear that it’s a part of ash’s reproductive process: the shimmering ash that pervades most of Erj’s air afflicts a corpse or other typically organic substrate, after which decomposition is accelerated as the telltale efflorescence appears. This subsides over time, leaving in its stead the spherical ash ‘pods’, which in turn release further ash into the air, that it might find further suitable substrates.