Monday, 10 February 2014

The Singing Ryaq

The vast ocean at Gdera's west coast is regarded as the continent of water, the fourth "landmass". The myriad of islands are home to most peculiar tribes and cultures, and the less reachable shores harbour many secrets. Among the largest islands are Gat-Gat, the main island of the Gat archipelago; cold, northern Tuulmenhan; and Asfilass, off Gdera's coast.
The flying raganaj have an advantage here, and many seafolk live with the tribes. Beja, who much enjoy water, are happy here as well. There are, however, no more fleeters here than elsewhere; it seems that they prefer sweetwater.
"To the fifth grade, my line of masters has tried to map the Ryaq, and I have followed. We never managed it, and my apprentice chose a less hopeless task - mapping ley lines."
— Naniwat, mapper

Because some of the tiny islands are so remote - some barely more than a rock that happens to support a little vegetation and some tents - cultures are more separate in the Ryaq than elsewhere. Some peoples openly welcome strangers who bring news and wares, others attack without warning. Few maps exist of the Ryaq. Notable places include the Summerstar Islands that rose after a meteor hit, the Fleeterstep Islands towards the Gat archipelago, and the Burning Islands and Firehome off Sawa's coast, where allegedly many plasmats live.
"Sanskanar's eternal storm makes it damn near impossible to sail there. If you make it, though, and out again, you'll live like a prince."
— Fanana Balshirom, captain

Artists' notes
I only made the map to the Ryaq recently. There are more islands than I first expected, some very remote, but there's not quite so much space as in the Pacific. Still, islands are always hard to get to, so there will be space for stories about lost treasure, hidden kingdoms and whatnot. And pirates, too. Harr!

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