Old Weyr

Central Bowl

ORIGINAL: Cradled, childlike, in an easterly mountainous embrace, the steppes of the central bowl nestle cozily between lake and weyr. The latticework of dusty adobe paths spider out from the southerly Weyr Road, the wagon-ruts of which curve lazily to the northeastern bazaar, the adobe sprawl of the New Weyr reflected in the lake that dominates a large portion of outdoor Igen. A small footpath, just as abused, ambles away from the shores, travelling over rock and hill to the northern dragonet complex and branching itself due west to end at the entrance of the blessedly cool inner caverns. One cracked path, faint with disuse, leads southeast to the crumbling ruins of Igen-that-was. All around, the dizzying heights of the caldera's sharp-sloped sides are pocked here and there with ledges, the weyrs' draconic occupants needing no path to guide their way.

CURRENT DAY: Cradled childlike in an easterly mountainous embrace, the steppes of the central bowl nestle cozily between lake and weyr. The latticework of dusty adobe paths spider out from the southerly Weyr Road, wagon-ruts of which curve lazily to the adobe sprawl of the northeastern bazaar. A small footpath, just as abused, ambles away from the lake's shore, travelling over rock and hill to the northern dragonet complex and branching itself due west to end at the entrance of the blessedly cool inner caverns. The abandoned caverns of Igen-that-was lie at the end of one disused tracking. All around, the dizzying heights of the caldera's sharp-sloped sides are pocked here and there with ledges, the weyrs' draconic occupants needing no path to guide their way.

Lake Shore

Sprawled out beyond the Weyr proper's hustling activity and ambling roads, the cool, blue paradise of the Weyr lake promises escape from the oppressive hammer of Igen summer's cruel climes; the asymmetrical, sandy white shores hook delicately around the deceptively still waters running deep and sure, greedy peninsulas reaching white fingers stretching in crooked lines towards its center. A sturdy shack, weather-beaten and brown as cured leather, resides in isolated splendor upon one such finger, screened shelving offering a variety of brushes and fragrant oils housed in colorful tureens. Out beyond a small and dusty paddock ringed by a white fence, a long rocky pier stabs out into the lake, providing a panoramic view of the Weyr itself, while the southern shores provide varied shrubs and grassed for the massed herds in their pens.

The crystalline focus of the westward stretch of Igen's activity chases frequent, colorful sunsets that sprawl over sparkling azure waters, throwing back Rukbat's brilliance in breathtaking pyrotechnic displays. Clean, crisp waters run still and deep, providing a transparent view of Weyr Lake's aquatic residents and their rocky home below with startling clarity, right down to the tiniest pebble. The glasslike qualities grow murky, however, near southern shores and the inevitability of runoff from the pens and their occupants. To the north, streams flow in a controlled rush downwards into the dark depths of the water caverns, the constant babble echoing through the neighboring ruins of Igen's abandoned complexes, disturbing naught but the tunnelsnakes that call that area 'home'.
Mirror Cavern

Cordoned off from the lake under a cape of stone is a sheltered grotto sized like a dragon weyr. Running water dribbles over the entrance not in any great torrent but lesser strings of liquid. Within, isolated waters assume a perfectly protected calmness pitching prisms of refracted light onto the walls and dome-like ceiling. How they flash when the pool's crystal clear surface is disturbed, serpents of light scattering like tunnel snakes from a lantern. Surfaces are naturally unfinished which explains the varying depths, 2-12 feet, and ability to be comfortly seated. As with any small cavern sounds have a way of being amplified be they swim strokes or nuggets of gossip.

ORIGINAL: Here thar be pens, in a variety of shapes and sizes fit for all manner of beastie.  The largest pens are those housing plump herdbeast for human or draconic consumption.  A few of the smaller pens are unoccupied, though there are remnants of their former occupants still evident on ground and fence.  The actual pens themselves are made of wood, stick, nail and twine.  It's a slap-shod sort of place, kept together by dreams and good luck to hold fast against the winds.  In each pen there are troughs for feed and water, and they appear again by the stableside.

CURRENT DAY: Here thar be pens, in a variety of shapes and sizes fit for all manner of beastie. The largest pens are those housing plump herdbeast for human or draconic consumption. A few of the smaller pens are unoccupied, though there are remnants of their former occupants still evident on ground and fence. The actual pens themselves are made solidly constructed, proof of Igen's resilience in improvements. In each pen there are troughs for feed and water, and they appear again by the stableside.


ORIGINAL: The powerful odor of hot runner lies heavy in the air here, and even the relative open of the stable design - roomy stalls, lofty arches, this is incongruously one of the best designed buildings in the entire Weyr, legacy of a long-ago Weyrleader of Herder origins - cannot altogether dispel the stink of Animal. The Stables serve for the Weyr's population of runners, and house a small menagerie of other creatures. Avians, caprines and porcines all have their homes here, and all add to the earthy feel of the place.

CURRENT DAY: The powerful odor of hot runner lies heavy in the air here. Even the relative open of the stable design, with roomy stalls and lofty arches - incongruously, this must be one of the best designed buildings in the entire Weyr - cannot altogether dispel the stink of beast and the proceeds of such: leather and manure. The stables serve for the Weyr's population of runners, and house a small menagerie of other creatures. Avians, caprines and porcines all have their homes here, and all add to the earthy feel of the place.

Living Cavern

ORIGINAL: Dim light from hanging glow-globes cannot fully camouflage the ravages of time and neglect on Igen's busy living caverns, though hints of its former glory peek through in the decorative cuts to the cave's natural limestone and the high quality of dusty, tatty-ended tapestries. Here and there, skybroom tables — stained dark by wood finish and a decade of grime — sit in loose groups, flanked by wicker chairs with pointy, broken rattan that pokes out to invariably find unprotected skin. The seemingly randomly placed furniture, however, at closer inspection, forms a sort of cross-shape of negative space. At the northernmost walls and nooks of the caverns, a long buffet table with tarnished lazy susans hosts an array of finger-foods and pitchers for the interested, refilled occasionally by drudges that shuffle in from the curtained entrance to the south, beyond which lies the kitchens. To the east is a large arch leading outside and, across from that, to the west, a set of rattling doors that open to reveal the tunnels and stairs of the inner caverns themselves.

CURRENT DAY: Brightly lit by a regimented march of strung glow-globes, Igen's busy living caverns are cut of the same exotic limestone design that frequents the bazaar without. Tapestries line the tops of the walls, one for each of Igen's wings, past and present; beneath them, skybroom tables litter the floors in scattered profusion. Some of the wicker chairs have seen better days, but most of the worst offenders have long-ago been replaced. The seemingly random placement of furniture, however, at closer inspection yields a sort of cross-shape of negative space. The northernmost walls and nooks of the caverns are owned by the kitchen's buffet, food-laden thrice daily in regimented shifts by busy bakers from the curtained southern entrance to the kitchens. To the east is a large arch leading outside; westerly lies the large doors leading down into the bowels of the weyr itself.


ORIGINAL: Chaos and anomie reign in this hub of food production. It's not so much the smell, which varies from 'faintly edible' to 'coal', as the film of grease that adds a sheen to every surface and glues canine hair to the wall. The area is well set up, of course — it's a large kitchen with more than adequate counter space. There's plenty of room to get around, too, even with the centralized canine spit run dominating the center of the floor. The place is just, well, not 'up to code'. Several large stoves belch smoke that chars the blocked chimney's outer brick. Unidentifiable bits of food have been baked to the floors and ground in by the uncaring trod of drudge shoes. Even the sink is crusty, with it's constant tower of filthy dishes and lack of cleansing sand to be seen anywhere. Add in the bloodied smears on cutting boards and what you have is a monument to cross contamination.

CURRENT DAY: For the benefit of the thousands of souls who will feast off the proceeds of this area, chaos and anomie reign supreme in this hub of Igen's food production. The smell of the place is overwhelming, everything from the butcher's offal to fresh-baked bread assaulting one's olfactory sense. This space is large and well-equipped, with hearths aplenty to shoulder the massive undertaking of feeding the desert crowds; internal to the outer edges, several large stoves belch smoke upward through the stacks, to stain the chimney without. A pair of nooks lie in front of the entrance and the exit, a vain attempt to keep questing individuals from entering too fully within the cook's domain.

Kitchen Courtyard

The domestic space of the kitchen courtyard is small, dusty, slightly over-grown, and practical. The focal point of the stone courtyard is a large well found directly in the middle. Turns have worn the once angled bricks to soft, crumbling curves about the lip, and a bucket always slightly damp is tied, secure, and ready to use at the side. Though a broom has swept here since last you passed through, it would appear the wind-borne dust has merely been heaped under the cobble-cracking shrubs of a stubborn environment that grow ever upward. A few benches are scattered around, but the feel is not comfort, for this small slice of sky and wind are saved for a kitchen staff always on the move.

Order at last, here in the cellar: foodstuffs in their proper places, floors cleaned and shelves organized: all the pots, pans, and flatware are properly hung on the walls and stored on their shelves, gleaming with careful cleaning. To one side of the cavern, there is a large outcropping of smoothed rock, permanently stained red: the place where all meat goes to be portioned for cooking. The air is cool and crisp and almost free of humidity and moisture, an astringent tang of salt and herbs hanging heavy in the air.
Cold Storage

Halite forms a thick, hoary frost on the walls, forever preserving the contents held within and offering up a somewhat bitter aftertaste to the still, chilly air. Frozen solid, carcasses are stacked like grotesque statuary against the far reaches of the walls, row upon row of foot-tagged herdbeast and fowl gleaming amid solid blocks of ice. The wintry chill of the place does little to dissipate the stench of blood that hangs,ominous, in the air; dry, coppery, permanent. The floors are covered in hides to contain any melt-off, while raised walkways between the aisles of food prevent contamination by human foot traffic and make it more difficult for the occasional pest to get at the Weyr's precious foodstuffs.
Inner Caverns

ORIGINAL: Faded elegance attests to former glory, the soot-covered ceiling sparkling with faint traceries of golden glitter. High, vaulted curves of the smooth limestone wavering whose variant hues of sandy gold and wheaten brown form rising, wave-like patterns that hold the sparkle of silver here and there. A long, wide cavern, this: various arches lend access to other caverns, while the noise of daily activity is often amplified by the natural acoustics of this open space.

CURRENT DAY: In understated elegance lies the mellow glory of Igen's inner caverns, the stone of vaulted ceilings sparkling with faint traceries of golden glitter. High curves of smooth limestone wavering between sandy gold and wheaten brown form rising, wave-like patterns that still hold the sparkle of silvere here and there. A long, wide cavern, this: various arches lend access to other caverns, whilst the noise of daily activity is frequently amplified by the natural acoustics of this open, airy space.


ORIGINAL: Boxes, everywhere: some are buried beneath the fugue of dust and spinner-webs, thrust unceremoniously into unseen corners, full of mysterious contents, their solid lids as yet unbroached. Still others line the dirt-smeared walls, damage evident in the caved-in sides or lids set askew. Littering the floor, debris has been left piled in disorganization, left untouched by inattentive drudges and administrative staff. Dull glows splutter feebly in their worn baskets, and the air is fusty and moist, shrouded in the humidity that is Igen. Moisture collects, languid, in the corners of the cavern, lending their own fragrance of mildew and green, growing things,while the occasional dry scratch of scales suggests inhabitants one might not want to inspect too closely.

CURRENT DAY: Only by sheer willpower has this room turned to the better in the last decade — for it once was an ominous room of discord and decay, but no more. Boxes and bins are everywhere, sorted in meticulous order. Glows hang from regular interval, the painstaking commodity of all fanatical storekeepers: light, to better see those who return items they got from Bin A into Bin B. Moisture collects in the air, a long-running war between those assigned to work these halls and the air itself — so far, the workers seem to be winning, but in the end, everyone dies.

Administrative Corridor

ORIGINAL: This hall must once had a glory about it, surely: there is a grand geometry to its graceful archways, and a grave beauty to its even stonework. Yet this hallway bears the veneer of disinterest as plain as the rest of the Weyr. The floors go unswept, the walls unwashed: a thin layer of green growth coats many a corner. (Moss, feeding off the light of the glows. Well - let's hope it's moss.) Grime clings to grout lines, spinner webs dangle from the glorious archways. Only the occasional footstep stirs the dusty floors, for most of the Weyrfolk have little occasion to venture here.

CURRENT DAY: There is a grand geometry to the graceful archways of this hall, a point of glory to the veneer of freshly-polished floors that are somehow upkept in a more fastidious nature here than in the common areas. Directly westward lies the restored doorway into Igen's modest archives, whilst the northern-bound traveler will find themselves entrenched in the hub of weyr leadership, athrum with activity within the council chambers.


ORIGINAL: A grand room, lost to more pressing concerns, the Archives hold many treasures well past their prime, from instruments to examples of older flying gear and agenothree tanks. Faded and disused Records lean tiredly against their shelves, their bindings peeling and creating layers of dust on surfaces long left without maintenance. The floors are dirty, various footprints creating crisscrossing paths between rickety wooden chairs and drunkenly off-kilter tables. Columns rise upward to the ceiling, hung with glow-baskets scarcely tended and fast losing their strength. The hum of activity is duller, here in this forgotten space — few visit in search of historical facts.

CURRENT DAY: A remarkable legacy for those with the eyes to appreciate it, Igen's Archives are modest, in proportion to the weyr's similarly modest status; but though they be small, the room itself is mighty, with grandiose portent to the high, vaulted arches. These walls hold many treasures past their prime, from instruments to examples of older flying gear and agenothree tanks. The meticulous task of re-scribing old records is continually ongoing, with faded and disued hides replaced on a daily basis. The chairs and off-kilter tables seem to be heritage of a time long past, not in line with the rest of the vision of this room; but in all weyrs are budgets, and perhaps you've found one of Igen's budget cuts.

Council Chamber

ORIGINAL: However disheveled the corridor outside might lie, THIS room - the sole dominion of the Weyr's upper elite - is always sparkling, ever swept, ever dusted, its walls scrubbed free of the grime of ages. A certain spartan grandeur fills the Council Chamber, with its foreboding stonework and heavy wooden door. A round table fills the bulk of the space, an ancient creation of fire-hardened wood, carved with the three dune'd symbol of Igen Weyr. Chairs surround: hard-backed things (with thin cushions) for the most part, but two grandiose chairs, on opposite sides of the table, that seat Weyrwoman and Weyrleader. The walls are lined with elegant old tapestries, depicting scenes of ancient Igen glories.

CURRENT DAY: Once disproportionately grandiose, the recent regimes have scaled the gaudy aura of Igen's council rooms down to better match the fit of the work executed within these walls. Spartan still, with foreboding stonework and a heavy wooden door, the innards of the room are swallowed by a giant round table, an ancient creation of fire-hardened wood carved with the three dunes of Igen. Comfortable chairs surround that monolith to authority, all similar but two, grandiose things left as memories of a past mentality. The walls are lined with elegant old tapestries, depicting scenes of ancient Igen glories.

Candidate Barracks

ORIGINAL: Hopes, dreams, and fears are contained in these cramped quarters, full of small cots and smaller trunks; thin ragged curtains barely provide privacy between the bunks, shining patches in the material suggesting one too many mending attempts. The minimal floor space is kept clear of debris and personal possessions, wide enough for a single broad table often used for study in the art of dragon care. Here, too, humidity has gathered into high corners, running down the walls and creating a slightly unpleasant atmosphere of damp and mildew. Near the entrance, one cubby exists, large enough to contain a bit of luxury for an adult overseer of the candidates, and a desk — for once in reasonable shape — is set to the left of the entrance, conveniently placed for the monitoring of comings and goings.

CURRENT DAY: Hopes, dreams, and fears are contained in these cramped quarters, full of small cots and smaller trunks; thin ragged curtains barely provide privacy between the bunks, shining patches in the material suggesting one too many mending attempts. The minimal floor space is kept clear of debris and personal possessions, wide enough for a single broad table often used for study in the art of dragon care. It is a cramped space despite it all, when dragoneggs lie upon the Sands: there's no helping the worn surroundings, when use is at an all-time high. Near the entrance, one cubby exists, large enough to contain a bit of luxury for an adult overseer of the candidates, and a desk — for once in reasonable shape — is set to the left of the entrance, conveniently placed for the monitoring of comings and goings.


From the astringent smell of redwort, to the gleam of counter and cabinet, this place positively defines the concept of antiseptic cleanliness. Despite the yawning exit to the Dragonhealer Courtyard, the floors remain scrupulously swept of sand and particulate matter. Back behind the counter where the healers usually are, are shelves full of bottles and jars, as well as cupboards hiding away more delicate items that shouldn't be exposed to too much sand. Beyond the counter, there is the Desk, where patients are checked in and taken to one of the examination areas by a healer. The windows are usually kept open for the flow of air, but there is both shutters to shut out dust storms, and curtains for other occasions.
Dragonhealer Yard

Painfully elegant, a stubborn brand of cleanliness is retained in the gentle colors of faded murals and various curtains hung from the rusted metal poles meant to shelter injured dragons on spacious couches lining the permanently soot-stained limestone walls. Of a dusty no-color somewhere between brown and gold, the floor extends onward, fading beneath ragged cabinets built to withstand anything from lashing draconic tails to various medicinal spills.
Ground Weyrs

Spacious by necessity, the slightly grimy atmosphere of these weyrs house couches made to fit dragons of various sizes and in various states of health, each with feeding and watering stations near to hand, as well as the necessary medical aids to treat any draconic illness. A small alcove offers up a different view: Healer's records stashed in meticulous order on a shelf, a cluttered desk full of hidework in process, and a polished small basin where fresh water may be poured. Above it, a small rocky shelf protrudes, holding various cleaning supplies in neatly labeled containers: redwort is most prevalent, followed by numbweed.
North Bowl

In the quieter spaces of the Northern Bowl, there is less activity; all is kept serene for young, forming draconic bonds. Beneath the sweep of skies' ever-changing colors, this round little panorama hosts the short distances between the Hatching Cavern and the weyrlings' ultimate destination: the barracks and training grounds. More packed dirt and tiny little hillocks than clean white sand, the floor is an uneven thing, a startling trap for the unwary and the clumsy. Further onward, the Ground Weyrs beckon, a haven for those who may seek medical attention.
Hatching Cavern Entryway

Ominous, this place, in the way only a chamber of hopes fulfilled and dreams dashed can be. The tunnels of this lofty corridor have a spartan elegance to them, but they are ultimately utilitarian in nature. One leads out onto the Sands, and a blaze of heat accompanies every step towards it; the other leads towards a wide staircase, by which the galleries may be accessed. A threadworn banner hangs high from the curved roof: Igen's three dunes, yellow and black.

Though occasionally cleaned by ambitious (or neurotic) drudges or weyrbrats being disciplined, the lack of Eggs over the last several Turns has led to the Galleries falling into a state of disrepair. Sand can be found…well, everywhere. On the benches, under the benches, on the railings and walkways. There is also the random tidbit leftover from people who've wandered into the gathering place since the last cleaning. A random bit of cloth here, a bit of something that might have been a carving-in-progress once there.

The out-of-doors of Igen Weyr seems a blissful respite from the oppressive heat of this sandy colosseum. Heated from beneath by volcanic vents, the air above the hatching sands shimmers, lending a sort of unreal, dream-like quality to the area beyond even the magic that happens here at Impressions. Despite its blistering temperatures, the sands are incongruously soft, almost powdery, and flat save for the worn stone queen's bower that rises up to break the monotony and provide a place of respite for the doting mother-to-be.
Weyrling Training Grounds

Here, a wide and spacious field, devoid of all but more of the glare of ubiquitous, fine white sand of Igen: not even a blade of grass dares lift its head against centuries of clumsy draconic antics. To one side, ever-present firestone bins are set, kept supplied by many a hand, while agenothree tanks line the curving angle just outside the barracks, primed and ready for use. Very often, a glimpse of classes in session or dragonets at play may be caught under the open sky under the watchful eye of diligent Weyrlingmasters and older dragons.
Weyrling Barracks

A cluster of small buildings punches out from the Weyr's walls here, each building just spacious enough to admit a few growing weyrlings and little else. Each has its own sturdy little hide covering the entrance to provide a modicum of privacy to its occupants, and a large stone basin for meat or water stands ready nearby. The Weyrlingmaster's office sits to one side, the smallest building in the area often doubling as class space. Within that space, the pale salted walls are covered with various charts, maps, and informational diagrams. In the small yard surrounded by these buildings, tables and chairs stand ready to seat as few or as many weyrlings as needed. A small hearth is situated at the nearest wall wall, with a small assortment of pots and kettles available to heat food or boil water, whether for cleaning or for klah.
Leadership Ledges

Set into a low-inclined hill at the base of the northernmost caldera wall, the Leadership Ledges are precisely what it sounds like: the echoing weyrs of Igen's golden dams are to be found here, alongside that of the Weyrleader. Hollowed out caves in porous rock are given grand facades on the exterior, each ledge exterior decorated with elegant walls and well-carved windows, with tidy little outbuildings housing a queen's worth of draconic necessities. Yet even this place shows Igen's dishevel: greenery lies thick on the slopes, too haphazard to be intentional beauty.
Abandoned Caverns

A tragedy of 400 turns ago wasted this cavern system which was, at its demise, private living quarters. The 'door' barring the entrance is a combination of loose wood planks and lumps of rubble too bothersome to move and suitable to make entering an unattractive past time. Not that there's anything captivating of the interior remains; a legitimate cave in of the base rock obstructs most of the ground though the chamber expands past its original dimensions when the wall to an adjoining room also collapsed. Grit and fine chips of stone carpet the floor, shreds of a rug are visible from under the weight of boulders. There is one undamaged glow sconce, but the vermin calling this abandoned cavern home aren't disclosing its salvageability.
Standing Stones

It is perhaps a pity that the Standing Stones lie in quiet isolation, half-forgotten in the Weyr's easternmost corner. Or perhaps it is inevitable: the grandiose beauty of these red rocks is ill-suited to Igen's coarse grit, and maybe only their loneliness allows them to survive unmarred. Whatever the reason, it cannot be denied that the Standing Stones, a lonely jumble of ancient boulders, have a glory about them. The tumbled field of pillars and arches has been shaped by eons of wind and water into strange shapes, twisted and rutted. The going is treacherous: only the Weyr's half-feral herd of caprines navigates the terrain with any ease. To the northwest, the lakeshore glimmers; to the east, rough-carved steps lead towards another ancient pile of rocks - though the Star Stones are less haphazardly placed than their Standing cousins.
Star Stones

The climb up here on foot is steep, narrow stone steps carved high into the sandstone, and from the top the precipice-drop to the jagged-craggy stones far, far below is treacherous. It's a wide sweep of ledge, a dragonlength and a half jutting out from a rough cliff wall. The wind here is ceaseless, dusty-dry during daytime and biting at night. But for those who brave the climb to this lookout perched high above the Weyr's bowl, the view from these sandy-red rocks is breathtaking. Igen stretches wide-wide-wide around, a vast expanse of deep blue lake and lush green swamp and the myriad rust-rich colours of desert and rock. The real purpose of this spot, though, is highlighted not in its view of what is below but its view of what is above. Three tall rocks stand, one balanced across the tops of the other two, at the focal point of the ledge, perpetually framing one slice of the desert sky beyond.

New Weyr

Central Bazaar

All roads in the weyr ultimately lead here, to this center of commerce. Canvas awnings jut out over time worn, sandy cobblestone, sheltering customers and wares alike from the majority of Igen's elements, and funnel scents both mouthwatering and vomit inducing through the thin streets. Almost all store fronts are open air, delineated by sandstone arches with intricately carved facades. The insides of these stone-shingled buildings act as an amplifier for the salesmens' bawled enticements, and are held up by the chipped swirls of marble pillars.
Dustbowl Cantina

To enter the Dustbowl Cantina is to descend: the heart of the ancient tavern lies half underground, at the foot of ancient steps, insulated from summer heat and winter cold by the volcanic rock surrounding it. A windowless place well-lit by glows, it is homey, even cozy, with a certain bijou charm - but for the deep gouges worn in wooden table and solid stone, some clearly lingering evidence of boisterous brawling. The wall behind the well-polished bar, though, remains free from scars or graffiti, as does the door into the small kitchen, and the stairwell up into the owner's quarters: the barkeep and his staff reign, and they guard their territory well. After all, only a fool angers the source of the booze.
Cantina Back Alley

A little too quiet, a little too dim. The alleyway behind the Dustbowl is not…unpleasant, exactly; the tavern staff have a little raised garden, and the brickwork of the ancient buildings all around offers a subtle beauty, with raised arches leading into little courtyards. And yet. There's something uncomfortable about the way the shadows linger here. Something distressing about the stink of the place, quite unrelated to the midden that lies at its end. Whatever else this alley might be, one thing is as certain as the goosebumps it gives: it's not a place for good little girls and boys.

ORIGINAL: Ugh! Whyever did you want to come here? Igen's midden is a miserable and smelly affair, loose piles of shifting garbage tossed haphazardly along the caldera wall. Few things on two legs linger here, for obvious reasons. It is the domain of the four- and six-legged: tunnelsnakes are common here, as are the colony of feral felines who subsist on hunting them.

CURRENT DAY: Ugh! Why did you ever want to come here? Igen's midden will never be a pleasant experience, but the accumulation of the weyr's refuse is penned tidily in long wood-framed trenches along the caldera wall. The demand for the midden's turning is an annual affair, and a miserable one: other than that singular messy incident, few things on two legs linger here, for obvious reasons.

Caravan Grounds

Deep grooves in the hard packed earth criss-cross a large patch of denuded ground, bearing mute testament to the caravans that frequent this area. Despite the midden holes set back a ways from the main center of traffic, the air is sweet, redolent with the sagebrush that forms a loose perimeter around the flattened expanse. In what is as close to its center as the vague boundaries suggest, a stone ringed fire pit has been dug and surrounded with the odd log or two, ash overflowing from its darkly blackened core.
Resident Terraces

Scoured by sand, storm, and sun, the bleached-gold face of the caldera wall is punctured here by gaping rock maws: within reside a multitude of little abode-brick buildings, colorful hides stretched across windows and doorways to protect against more unfortunate weather. No traditional dormitory, this: Igen's weyrfolk live in family groups or packs of singletons in these cozy brick abodes, dwellings doled out on a first-come, first-serve basis. Here and there, steep stone staircases wend their way between spacious stone ledges, their outer edges protected by the ingenious use of stone blocks to prevent being pitched over the side in high winds. Below, the Central Bazaar is spread, replete with the sounds of everyday life in the Weyr: the bawl of beasts, the shouts of bargains being made, and the happy laughter of the occasional child all raised in a cacophony life.
Shared Oven

Even in the heat of summer, a fire will always be found here and that’s the point. Stationed conveniently close to the residents terraces, the back wall of this courtyard is taken up by a massive brick oven with constant delectable aromas wafting out of it. For a token amount for to contribute towards the fuel and maintenance costs, a dish can be left to cook in the oven during the day. The omni-present crowd of aunties and uncles will take turns out of their routine of gossip and card games to occasionally check on the dishes under their care and stoke the fire. And if after a long, hard day of work, someone is too hungry to wait to get home and eat, there’s a few tables set up around a lone tree.

Conflicting ideas or architects developed this chamber round at first until right angles took over for the arc still without sacrificing much in the way of spatial efficiency. Matching the flat lines of the left side are single cots with a few double tiered representations should space be at a premium. Nannies enjoy the luxury of larger, higher bed frames or hammocks which flank the woven baskets containing infants. Ample blankets and sheepskins bloom a variety of colors, syncing with circular braided rugs to make the creche comfortably snug (and more soundproof). A few playthings on wheels and strings, straw-woven dolls and sturdy stick animals compile a roster of toys on the semicircle side of the cavern.
Public Baths

Stout walls have been erected around several naturally formed pools, serving to provide a semblance of privacy and protection from the harsh wind and sand. Above the pools, well cleaned walkways criss-cross beneath tiled arches and descend with a stairway or two leading down to each pool to provide one means of slip-free access through the area. Surrounding the pools there are benches, receptacles to put used clothing and towels in, and areas to get sweetsand and towels from - if you didn't bring your own.

ORIGINAL: Ancient, half-crumbling, and more than a little pathetic: Igen Weyr's guardhouse is a weathered thing, one to which little enough love has been shown. Theoretically a two-story building, the staircase into the upper quarters has long since rotted away to collapse, and a creaky ladder leads up into what once were barracks, but now serve as storage for miscellaneous and half-forgotten equipment and assorted rubbish. The downstairs has faired little better: trestle tables serve as both crude desks and cruder staging areas, while the small administrative office reeks more of booze than paperwork. Only the brig is halfway well-maintained, though it's still a pathetic thing: cramped and unsanitary, with a single dingy cot and dusty latticed window.

CURRENT DAY: What was once nigh-obsolete has been wrought anew in understated radiance: Igen Weyr's guardhouse has always been a weathered thing, but now the two-storied building shines with a little more gloss than the dilapidation of yore. Gutted and refit with a brighter interior, new wood lends itself to a staircase upward to the guard quarters and to long, functionally-assertive desks that sweep behind the main focus of the room. Determinedly upright, the entrance desk allows the one on shift full sight of the room, and requires all comers to submit in lowered-height submission against the glory of the rough-shined skybroom.

Crafter Quarters

Set high against the steep slope of the Weyr caldera, the Crafter Quarters lie subtly removed from the Bazaar below them. They bustle, but it is a slower bustle from the mercantile flurry: the scurry of Apprentices being sent on errands, the muffled shouts of irate Masters, the bursts of bangs and clicks and clacks as Crafters carry out their work. The familiar abode brick buildings of Igen line this little web of streets, some colorfully painted, some drab and dull. With the portioning of space first come and first serve, some Crafts have laid claim to multiple buildings, while others are forced to share space - sometimes in rather incongruous ways. Private rooms are the domain of Journeymen and Masters, while Apprentices must make do with cramped dormitories, when they are not reduced to claiming mere corners.

The Smith's area is certainly not the prime real-estate in the crafter's section of the Weyr: but, true to Smith form, they've taken what they were given and made the best of it. At the tail end of a maze of winding streets, an iron gate is set within adobe brick walls, opening up into a narrow courtyard. Cracked cobblestones and paths overgrown with native grasses mar the place, though the influx of Oldtimers brings signs of improvement. A few gnarled trees provide shade over stone benches for people to sit and talk. In the back corner of the courtyard, where it can be shaded by the surrounding buildings, is a rather large copper still.
Off of this central area, there are several wooden doorways opening into the four sides of the small buildings flanking this narrow courtyard. To the left is the metalworking wing, its windows often kept open to keep air flowing and prevent the buildup of toxic fumes. On the opposite side of the courtyard, away from the metal's fires, is the woodcrafting wing. Straight ahead, opposite the entrance gate, are the living quarters - with apprentices on the bottom floor, and stone steps leading to the second floor offices and higher ranking sleeping quarters. Along the wall with the gate, there are various classrooms and working rooms with windows opening out to the streets beyond, so that their wares can be displayed for passersby to see - and hopefully purchase.

Nestled in a distant corner of the bazaar, you might be able to overlook the turn that leads you to the heart of the tanners’ quarters, but anybody with a working nose can't miss it completely. Vats of various odiferous compounds and hides in all stages of preparation dominate this open aired courtyard. Despite the smells, business must be done and various crafters can always be seen going about their daily duties.
Auction Yard

Here is a place of two extremes. Either packed full of men and beasts or else nearly vacant. When busy, animals bellow and the sounds of lively barter fill the air. The pens are completely packed and it’s a wonder how they all got into one location in the first day as herders try to sell off as many as they can for the best price, while buyers fight for a steal. But when there aren’t auctions scheduled for a given day, the yards might as well be a ghost town occupied by nothing but sand and herdbeast patties.
Bazaar Sidestreet

No matter the time of day, the darkness here is almost absolute, adding a certain je ne sais quois that borders on the treacherous. Here and there, cobblestones have gone missing and leave holes that are perfect for snagging the feet of the unaware. The stench is also criminal, a mixture of urine, rotting meat, and other things best left unexamined in the heaps that pile up next to the back doors of certain of the bazaar establishments.
The Pit

One does not enter The Pit so much as descend into it. Why else the name? The Steen ancestors paid for their square footage with sweat, excavating the area and building curved walls up around it. Wide, smooth steps descend into a large entry area that overlooks the pit and galleries. Floors, ceilings and walls have been whitewashed with limestone paste, increasing the amount of light reflected back from the numerous glow baskets hung on the walls. A rounded doorway to the right leads one into the business' "office", which is furnished in spartan style: cushions for kneeling or sitting upon, a desk that's low to the ground constructed of the same whitewashed stone as the rest of the building, and niches carved out of the walls themselves for decorative pieces. Here is a small sculpture of men wrestling, there is a wooden carving of a champion with a foot upon his vanquished foe.

Continuing on through the lobby brings one to another set of six stairs that descend into the galleries surrounding the sand-filled pits. A low wall separates audience from combatants, but even at its highest point, those in the galleries are never more than twenty feet away from the action. The sand is raked daily, with fresh sand added whenever the blood to soil ratio becomes too great.

Tunnelsnake Fighting Ring

Access to this shady of shadiest forms of gambling entertainment is yielded only to those who are in the know or are cautiously invited. Comfort is hardly a thought here; the room itself is cramped and often uncomfortable if too many are in attendance. Here one can observe and bet on the bloodsport within a makeshift pit meant to hold nothing more than a pair of unfortunate tunnelsnakes. The stones of the pit have been stained nearly black from the numerous rounds that have come before and a faint metallic scent lingers on the air.

Road Rooms

Weyr Plateau

A stripe of packed earth designates the central route connecting the Weyr to prominent geographical and urban points outside of the walled complex. Pale knobby rocks line the roadsides, cast there by hand and foot with purpose in mind, lining the periphery in grades of pebbles to boulders. This site is under constant incursion from wind-blown sand and if not regularly maintained the road would eventually be interred. Silt becomes more prominent underfoot further east where the lake lies.
Crater Lake

Four centuries ago, a chunk of the very comet that drove some Oldtimers forward crashed to the desert near Igen Weyr, collapsing the original inner caverns and breaking through to a new spring that now feeds into Igen’s underground aquifer. The result? Beauty from destruction - a long, crystalline lake of brilliant sapphire blue. Sharp sandstone rings the water in jagged peaks, where sparse desert shrubs cling to steep, sandy slopes and reflect darkly on the pristine, mirror-like surface. Out in the midst of the lake, a small island pierces the glassy plane, umber from azure in a near-perfect cone. A startling break in the stark desert and savannah surrounding the Weyr, the crater lake sits like a jewel in the rough - a picturesque, inviting respite from the rough, dry terrain beyond.
Weyr Pass Road

The temperature begins ever-so-gradually to drop as you travel further into the foothills of the Central Pass. Largely inhospitable and difficult to traverse, it is no wonder most traffic converges on this narrow dip through the mountains: a hospitable pass that runs east-west, deep-rutted with the marks of centuries' of wagon ruts and runner hooves. To your northeast, Igen Weyr is now clearly distinguishable from the other mountains in the range, and the eastern roadway splinters, a trail running up towards the plateau at its feet.
Oasis Inn

Tucked into a small fold of foothills along the road leading from the Weyr to the Central Pass, this inn truly is just what its name implies - an oasis for travelers coming from either direction. Stabling and board are available - though the boarding comes at a price, since there isn’t much of it. The most well known part of the Inn is the tavern - a rustic bar built of solid skybroom and furnished in dark, oiled wood, leather, metal, and glass. Though well used and sometimes abused, the furniture is also well cared for and maintained, and the food and drink draw many a rider in alongside the travelers. The décor is eclectic, consisting in hangings, rugs, carvings, and other things from every region of Pern, bestowed upon the owner in barter for lodging. The atmosphere isn’t one of a dive; it’s cozier and cleaner than that, though there is just a touch of harmless “shady” to be found - particularly in the evenings.
Weyr Road

A few scraggly trees cling to the river shoreline here, but they quickly give way to sand and rock to the west. The desert stretches on between the Hold and the Weyr, following the river South. The going is rough and treacherous, with little to look at save the looming mountains of the Central Range to the north, where Igen Weyr may be found. The sky seems to go on forever, seeming so high and expansive that it's almost disorienting to look up. Few travelers venture far from the life-giving water, and the wagon ruts run deep.
Igen River Road

The scent of mud fills the air here, rich and organic. The source, of course, is the broad brown river to your east: the mighty Igen, Pern's largest, and the heart of life in its namesake Hold. The buzz of vtols and cries of wherries mingle with the rumble of carts and chatter of people, for this part of the road lies at the foot of Igen Hold. The road stretches north from here, towards the just-visible mountain range that houses Igen Weyr.
Igen Hold Central Courtyard

Below the bizarrely twisted and honeycombed sandstone cliffs that comprise the face of Igen Hold, a wide courtyard cobbled in flat, pale terra cotta brickwork stretches out to greet visitors approaching from the road that winds along the red palisades above the Igen River. Kept mostly clean of Igen’s ever-pervasive sand, the stone lawn is edged by covered walkways that open onto the space via dozens of carved archways. Glowbaskets hang from wrought iron mounts at regular intervals beneath stone awnings, and each corner boasts a proud statue of a stylized dragon in sandstone. Most gather in the shade of the walkways during the heat of the day, but when twilight sets in, the Hold denizens can be found milling about the yard as the desert air cools, their paths illuminated by torches wedged into engraved stone wall sconces on the columns framing each arch.

Central Range Caves

Hunter’s Pass

Veering off from the Weyr Pass Road out of the Central Range, the narrow, cliff-flanked path of the Hunter’s Pass wends its way steadily upward for a time before dipping down into a green, forested valley. Used by those wishing to chase mountain game, especially in the colder months, this weaving passage of rough, ruddy rock is sometimes used by travelers heading away from the Weyr in the midst of Igen’s summer sandstorms, since the dirt-laden winds are unable to reach very far past the turnoff leading into it.
Rockslide Gap

Signs of seismic activity are writ large in the harshly defined cracks that craze wildly along the walls of the Pass and the piles of rubble that abruptly cut off at the bend leading into the valley. Here, a gigantic rockslide tumbles across the thoroughfare, more inconvenient than permanent. There is a boon, though: the chaos has uncovered a curiosity - in the eastern wall, comprised of the stone of the mountains themselves, a dark mouth has opened beyond the jumbled stones. The lip of the cavern is a sturdy shelf of rock, and the entrance is large enough to accommodate even the bulkiest of adventurers enticed by its yawning depths.

Beyond the rough, serpentine passage that leads steeply downward into the blackness past the dark opening in the stone face above, a single shaft of light breaks through a slim portal to the surface and illuminates a small, dim cave with a flat, gravelly floor and rough walls of grey and brown stone. By night, darkness settles in, heavy and impenetrable. Light, however, reveals yet another opening on the far side, still large enough for a man to pass through unhindered to explore the mysteries beyond.
Grand Cavern

The immensity of this beautifully alien cavern is difficult to put into words. Easily the size of Igen’s Hatching Cavern and then some, the gigantic cave could easily fit the full complement of the Weyr’s wings. It’s clear from the shape of the elegant rock forms and undulating wear of the pit-pocked ceiling that water once flowed here, though there is now no trace of it save for the constant, faint drip of moisture from a source yet unseen.

Ruddy, rounded columns seemingly formed of stacked mounds of melting rock mount upward toward the cavern roof, the otherwise flat floor winding to and fro between them and the cones of still-growing stalagmites. From the roof hang their stalactite counterparts, along with a few odd straw-like formations tipped in water falling at a near glacial pace. Flowing down the far walls like frozen waterfalls are yet more formations, and four more dark portals opening in the walls at nearly even spacing hint at even more wonders to be found. Allowing all this to be seen vaguely during the day are several more narrow portholes to the surface, visible only as bright points of white light far above when Rukbat is high overhead.

Crystal Cave

Caution is key when venturing into this fragile chamber. Each and every small flicker of light reflects dimly off of the myriad of long crystals that reach their faceted fingers out from the rounded cavern walls. Ranging in hue from deep purple to pearly rose, these millions of glinting stems spring from every inch of the walls of this medium-sized cave, lining them like one giant geode. The only plain stretch of stone to be found is the floor, coated in a fine layer of sparkling dust. While the crystals are firmly set, one good bump could send a spar or two of the precious growths tinkling to the floor.
Geode Lode

Crystals line the start of the short passage to this strangely ordinary chamber, diminishing in size and luster until only plain stone remains to precede what lies within. The cavern walls are unremarkable, save for the fact that they appear oddly…bubbly, as though the stone had boiled and been frozen solid in an instant. Yet…here a glint, there a glint; a closer look reveals a few of those ovoid formations to be broken open and lined with crystal. In fact, if the pattern holds true…the very walls of this cave are embedded with gem-filled rocks - geodes everywhere!
Emerald Chamber

Venturing along the smooth, narrow corridor leading north from the Crystal Cave, the stone turns dark and the air grows close. Then, with almost breath-robbing abruptness, a new chamber sprawls out in a clover-like shape, wider than it is long. Here, dark stone walls are striated with pale veins that glint at the edges with tantalizing blazes of gold. Between those gleaming boundaries, hues of green ranging from seafoam to deep forest sparkle with uncut glory, ranging in size from a grain of sand to that of a full mark. Another opening yawns to the north, the near blackness of the stone gradually giving way to something more pale and whorled, a past incursion of water readily evident as the passage continues.
Water-worn Cave

Water pervades the floor of this absolutely otherworldly cave, shallow enough to wet only one’s boot soles in some places and deep enough to rise to the ankles in others. With the aid of a little glowlight or a torch, the hues of blue, white, pale green and teal that ripple and swirl across every undulating formation become evident, the appearance nearly reminiscent of a water-carved glacier - without the frigidity, of course. An ancient flow of water once carved through to leave beautifully serpentine tubes and tunnels through the marbled stone here, most large enough to allow a person to pass, but several too small for anything more than a firelizard to fit through. One wide portal at the eastern cusp of the cavern roughens to a plainer sort of stone, opening out onto the swirling waters of the underground river passing into shadow beneath its lip.
Waterfall Chamber

The endless fall of bright, mineralized water fills this cavern with eternal song. The smallest of cracks in the ceiling allows daylight to filter through and be captured by the tumbling falls, causing the mist to, at times, cloak this wondrous rush of water in subtle rainbows. Though magnificent to behold, the way through is made treacherous by slick limestone ground to smoothness by the constant exposure to moisture.
Aquifer Cavern

Wide and and squat is the corridor leading gradually downward from the northeastern quarter of the Grand Cavern, the unmistakable murmuration of swirling water uttering tempting whispers from an invisible quarter somewhere ahead. The passage comes to an abrupt end, however - thoroughly interrupted by the vast, shadowy jade expanse of an immense underground lake. Cold and quiet and deep it sits in the darkness, lances of sunlight striking the glassy surface with sharp brilliance during the day to reveal the furthest, barely visible edges of the low-ceilinged cavern. Fortunately, it is shallow at the edges, a few limestone shelves aiding a bit of deeper exploration without the necessity of swimming or boat. Still other cave mouths beckon for exploration further out, the rushing of water becoming more prominent as the aquifer stretches back.

A careful bit of wading along the eastern wall of the aquifer cavern and a quick scramble up to a rough limestone shelf yields the narrow, low-slung path carved out by the swiftly moving underground river that feeds the great subterranean lake. Inexorable, powerful, the current emerges from well out of reach or sight beyond impenetrable walls, roiling and eddying around and over battered, eroded stone that shows pale in any light brought near. The water is not safe here; wise is the explorer who remains on the stony path that bears him - or her - in.

Deceptive is the path that leads through the shallows along the western rim of the aquifer, the rainbow striations that peer out from the river-carved rock beckoning temptingly above the knee-depth of the tranquil roll of the underground river around the bend. Here, however, the current suddenly becomes far less friendly, funneled tightly through the small maze of rough stone tunnels. No deeper than waist-high on an average man does it ever become throughout this span, nor impossible to navigate if the current is anticipated - but precautions might be wise, all the same. Eventually, the river splits into two broad forks; one veers left to vanish beneath the lip of the pale mouth of the Water-worn Cave, while the other bends north toward a broad, dark portal that seems to lead to another cavern. Though clearly formed by a great amount of rushing water, the current leading this way seems…oddly sluggish, as though something further downstream stands in its way to slow it.
Rockfall Cave

The right branch of the subterranean river wheels languidly into this rugged room…and comes to a jarring halt. What is clear upon entering this ruined cave is that not all is as it should be; tremors have loosed a great tumble of sandy-hued stone from the roof high above, the boulders bringing the flow of water to a near-standstill. Small eddies rolling along the northern edge of the cave reveal that it isn’t completely stagnant; there is a path to be unblocked, should the stones be moved. Given the way this water flows in relation to the Weyr…the solution to a much larger problem might just be found in that very task.
Stepped Pools

A short, bitterly black passage, nearly hidden by the folds of rock that gnarl the southwestern wall of the aquifer cavern, leads to one of the sweetest surprises for the intrepid explorer yet revealed by this incredible underground world. Here, wide shafts in the stone ceiling admit daylight and moonlight more freely, falling upon the ethereally placid tabletop surface of a series of tiered pools. Broad and shallow, yet deep and smooth enough for sitting in, they reflect the overhanging stalactites and flowing formations of dripping stone along the walls with perfect, crystalline clarity. Fed by an adventurous thread of the river running parallel to the room, the pools are not still, merely calm. Sound echoes starkly here, even the barest whisper amplified by the hard, variegated surfaces within - yet there isn’t anywhere for it to go. Save for through what appears to be the mouth of a tiny passage the opens above a small, wide shelf of rock up near the ceiling, but who knows if that’s of any consequence.
Glow Cavern

The ceiling bows low over those who venture down the easternmost passage from the Grand Cavern, low enough to warrant crouching from time to time. The deeper it wends, the darker the stone becomes, the rough edges of the passage smoothed and softened by the velvet crawl of moss nourished by the steadily broadening trickle of stream that hugs the left wall of the corridor. A pale, eerie illumination seems to emanate from the destination ahead…and suddenly, the cavern sprawls away from from the portal that meets it. Thick moss and moist stone stand spangled with the subterranean starscape of glows, shallow water and the sweet flow of fresh air from a source unseen lending life to constellations of ghostly green and blue light across every surface. Far across this wondrous cavern, another dark mouth yawns tall and narrow - the source of the breath of life that keeps the glows sustained.
Hidden Forest Cave

The strange light of myriad glows reaches only so far along the sharp bends and twists of the rocky passage ascending from the pale-lit cavern…but is quickly replaced by luminance far more familiar - and the source is a rather surreal revelation. Beyond the man-wide exit, another cavern opens - literally - to the wide sky above, forest breezes whistling across the tree-lined rim of the bowl that looms with craggy, curved sides around the sanctuary below. The misty trickle of a waterfall loosed by newborn cracks in the stone whispers down to the ruddy-earthed floor, tentatively carving a path for itself to join the shallow pond that stands at the foot of a cluster of tall, thin trees. Stretching pale, verdant arms to the heavens, these lonely sentinels stand in solitude at the edge of a world not their own - a sliver of the bright woods brought low to sate the curiosity of a darkly beautiful underworld.

Western Territory

Western Road

Dry, drier, driest - the road to the west of Igen Weyr becomes steadily more arid and rocky as it wends its way out of the Great Central Range and marches onward to the steppe-lands and desert. Treacherously winding and narrow in spots until it escapes the labyrinth of the mountains, this well-trod stretch of sandy earth is not for the faint of heart to traverse in any season.
Southern Telgar Steppe

The savannah home of desert runners and hardy herder-folk, Telgar’s steppe-lands along the northern bend of the Western Road are dry and wind-swept. No trees grow here, save around the scant rivers and lakes that dot and thread the terrain. Summers here are quite hot, and the winters are deep, with many a morning finding the low shrubs and grasses gilded in thick, silvery frost. The flatness here might drive a mountain-dweller insane, were it not for the rolling hills that break the monotony of the view every now and again. Navigation must be done relying on sun, stars, sense, and scant landmark alone, for there are no mountains or valleys to take a bearing by for leagues.
Deadman's Trench

Often a stopping point for more adventurous trader caravans - and sometimes a hideout for renegades and criminals along the road - Deadman’s Trench is a narrow canyon oasis on the cusp of the savannah and desert. Erosion and time have driven a deep scar into the sandstone bluffs here. Thin, gravelly trails and roads just wide enough for wagons are the only points of entry or exit, switching back and forth along the rusty walls before finally giving way to the flat, sandy floor of the canyon. Small trees and bushes flourish along a trickling creek, and many a creature that refuses to face the scorching desert just beyond calls this stony hideaway home. A worthwhile retreat to be sought…should a soul be daring enough to brave the potential dangers of this easily missed locale.
Great Central Desert

A sea of golden sand stretches as far as the eye can gaze in all directions, marred here and there by the rough scars of granite and sandstone outcroppings of various lengths and widths. Scorching by day and bitingly cold by night in most months, the Great Central Desert is not a place one ventures without a firm plan or a quick exit (such as a dragon). The winds that whip mercilessly across this sandy expanse on some occasions can create colossal samiels and dust storms that block the sun for candlemarks at a time. Other days find the desert sitting amidst an immense calm, the sunlight painting dunes and bluffs in ever-shifting colors and the moonlight turning gold to pale silver beneath nearly unblinking stars. It is a place of great danger and beauty all at once, to be sure.
Lost Oasis

Blocked from view in the south by one of the largest sandstone formations jutting from the desert, this lovely oasis is truly a hidden jewel in the sand. Leagues away from any trace of civilization, it boasts a tranquil blue pool of fresh water and shallow stream fed by an unseen spring beyond a dark crevice in the bluff. Trees spring up against the rock, providing merciful shade and filling in the narrow recesses surrounding the water. The height of the outcropping funnels a near-constant light breeze through the place, cooling the air considerably in comparison to the desert beyond.

However, for all its beauty, there is an unaccountable air of fear and uncertainty about this oasis. At night, the otherwise friendly wind can cross the space with a low, unnerving howl, and creatures passing in the shadows do so in nervous, unseen movements. This has, unfortunately, been a place of grisly discoveries for Igen Weyr - most likely due to its out-of-the-way nature. Sweep riders have observed no renegades, bandits, or criminals of any other stripe in the area thus far, adding to the mystery here.

Eastern Territory

Eastern Road

Beyond a steep traverse down the eastern slopes of the Central Range, the road leading out toward Keroon becomes level and wide, a landscape of grit and sandstone giving way to flatlands and swamps near the Igen River. The air becomes thicker, the aridness of the desert succumbing to the atmosphere of the river and, further on, the sea. Eventually, this melds into the plains and foothills that define Keroon’s plateau.
Igen River Hold

Sitting on the cusp of a striking juxtaposition of sand and greenery, Igen River Hold hugs both rugged cliff and gentle slope of riverbank. Small fishing craft with brightly-hued hulls and sails can be seen to coast easily along the currents here, as well as larger boats built for transport and the occasional journey downriver to the ocean. Crafthalls for both boat-builders and fisher folk make up most of what can be seen from Igen River itself, the ramps and piers extending past the thin strip of tidal swamp to be found at this point along the water’s edge. A smallish sprawl of industry, this hold - but a bustling one, with a colorful and thriving community of river-bound Seacrafters and holders who find such a lifestyle to their liking.
Igen River Bank

The riverbank just beyond Igen River Hold is largely free of the tidal swamp that encroaches on the muddier, more southerly edges of the wide river. Sandy soil begins to mingle with the rich loam of denser earth here, giving a more solid footing to any piers that find anchor near to the water and beyond. Desert trees and grasses take root all the way to the river’s edge in some spots, mingling with the greener vegetation of looming swampland further downstream.
Red Butte

Far removed from Hold and Hall, out in the utter midst of the plains of Keroon, sits the unique, solitary dome that every weyrling most likely knows better than any other landmark on the face of Pern - the Red Butte. Rings of eroded bedrock and sandstone ring this small mountain like long-frozen ripples, worn by weather, upheaval, and time. Valleys and scarps surround and fade into the varied strata of the plateau itself. From both the ground and the air, the strikingly-hued Red Butte remains one of the most impressive and recognizable features of the entire Northern Continent.
Vtol Swamp Hold

This small hold is a solid bastion of stone in the midst of the murky wetlands of the Igen River. However, the constant moisture and verdant crawl of insidious mosses, vines, and clinging plants gives the place a distinctly decrepit and even creepy feel. Stone and dirt paths wind between trees and buildings with a seemingly permanent seep of water emerging between rocks and gravel, pooling stagnantly in any low spots along the way. Living fully up to it’s name, the population of vtols in this swamp settlement is annoyingly high in the warmer months, and the hold Healers have made something of a specialty out of repellant salves, soothing lotions, and bite and sting treatments made from local flora. This is not a locale anyone voluntarily lingers at on a regular basis - unless one was born here. Or nearby.
Tidal Swamp

Mud, muck, creatures and insects lurking unseen on, in, and above the water in twisted, moss-draped trees - the quintessential swamp exists in all its dark, damp glory all around the hold in its midst. Even so, the water is not entirely stagnant here; the ebb and flow of the river keeps things moving, and no growth (except for the ancient, gnarled trees) is ever permanent. For all it is a swamp, there is a subtle beauty to this verdant, humid area. Once you get past the vtols.
Keroon Sea Hold

Gone are the sands and swamps following the Igen River down to the sea, once that expanse of water is crossed and left behind. Eastward and southward winds the road to the sapphire sea and pale bluffs of Keroon Sea Hold. Though by no means the largest of Pern’s sea holds, Keroon is quite old, and it shows in the stately, worn walls and caves of the Hold proper. A wide, sand-scoured courtyard surrounded by palms and arched ramparts opens up behind the columned and domed lighthouse tower on the southernmost palisade. The remainder of the Hold unfolds downward, into and behind the bluffs, and the dock cavern for the a portion of Keroon’s fishing fleet yawns darkly below, no matter the height of the tide.
Imani Canyon

Nestled against the eastern mountains and hidden by the shifting dunes of the Igen Desert lies a small canyon carved from the desert itself by the mountain meltwater. Difficult to see from the air, and only reachable from the ground by those who know the roads a stream has slowly carved a path through the rust-hued desert stones over the ages. Reds, oranges, and yellows band the walls of the canyon while grey-green shrubs and vegetation cling to the walls in defiance of the wind and sand.

Caverns wind through the lower portions, perfect refuges against thread and dust storms which ravage Igen. Here there are rare plants and minerals used to make various dyes, inks and pigments. For this reason, the canyon is home to the Imani traders for part of each turn, and during the last week in summer for a single night the entire area is filed with the scent of night-blooming flowers, marking the time when the Imani take to the roads again.

Kurkar Hold (The Underground)

Tomb Reliquary

What is death but a beginning? Intermittently for centuries, this cave system was a final resting location for nomads and Lords alike. Thick brown rock, rough to the touch, and sometimes capped with the light of glows, expands in narrow corridors. The dirt underfoot is coarse and actions tend to echo. Dry here, the dead desiccate and have layered over the Turns, though they’re not in any real abundance. Creative in their macabre entertainment, youths will sometimes manipulate skeletons in various positions, “Karl” being a titular favorite.
Subterranean Gardens

Pillars of desert light entering through small gaps in the spanse above encourage the growth of quick-growing algaes and freshwater plants within the shallow lake. Fish descended from a population stocked here a century ago, are kept in place with a series of stone terraces and weirs so that they might be easily moved or caught. Waterfowl also float and bob, safe against predation. Vegetation above the water’s turquoise surface feeds off the by-products of the fish and fowl, providing the populace a much needed diet of greens and small vegetables. There are several of these setups engineered wherever light from the surface leaks underground.
The Plaza

The small crevice to enter forthwith accedes to stone steps that descend for half a dragonlength, subterranean space broadening into the volume of five cathedrals, but a sanctuary of few saints. The heartbeat of the Underground is an open courtyard of native soil ringed by domiciles and living quarters gouged into the bedrock. Fowl, caprines, and long-tailed ovines occasionally wander and sleep freely, except when assemblies, dancing, or the rare wedding features. Music is kept to a minimum, as sound may wander to the surface, but daily life starts and ends here. The living quarters carved into the rocks may be as simple as crawl space or a large enough family unit to house several members. Often cloth is used to separate one's 'claim' and to provide a modicum of privacy. A towering ceiling is forever safe from light's reach, its vacant blackness like a night sky without stars.
The Maw

A circular chasm located half a mile from the plaza, yawns to accept stumbling livestock, discarded rubbish, and all forms of light. Some walk its rim for tests of bravery. Others find entertainment in yelling their names into the breach, or dropping glows and stones to detect some sort of a bottom. Results will vary on said experiments, as will the rumors that those who cross Baham have met their demise on this spot. The terrain is harsh here, but some like the abyss’s company and the echos it deforms before it swallows them whole.
Underground Lake

With no wind to rustle its surface, the lake under the earth is as glass and every bit as clear. Fed by aquifers, its level remains consistently predictable. Far from existing in only a solid body of water, the lake invades several chambers, vanishes even further underground, only to reappear in a different zone. Depth varies to a few inches to a hundred feet or more as it follows even more ancient courses into the multi-colored bedrock. Sound readily carries over the slate-smooth water, internally enhanced by the confine of rock all around.
Glowlight Grotto

The immense glowlight cavern gleams with a constellation of little lights, all the walls and ceilings shining in tones of nebula blue. Water drips from the luminescent ceilings, gathering down below in a great cool calm inner lake. A series of walkways wind across the water, where they meet at last in a landing toward the back. There a latticed pergola shelters low tables of lacquered wood. Just outside the pergola, and before the back wall, a space has been cleared and tiled in dark and light squares, as if they formed a life-size chessboard. The banded stone of the back wall has been chiseled into a damaged bas-relief of people and animals at play. A draconic sculpture rises out of the relief into full-fledged statuary, its taloned hands cupped to hold glows.