Updated: Apr 28, 2021
The Dek Var
The black sand of the Dek Var takes a variety of shapes. Unlike other deserts where rolling hills of sand crest and fall the mounds of the Dek Var vary greatly. Some are huge aberrant monstrosities, angular where they should be smooth or coiled like a snake; some no more than small mounds. The erratic weather has made many in unfamiliar shapes and the blistering sun has fused many together into hardened mountains with razor sharp crests.
Tall, lonely shards of glistening obsidian grasp up for the heavens erratically among the lows and valleys between the sands. The Arak's call them Kunonistok, scarring them to sharpen their Styts and leaving them appearing like twisted devils.
To the west are the foothills of great Derran mountain range. To the west the sharp crags of the Asgwn celn y byd protect the Llifadür from these desert savages. Within the canyons of both mountain ranges are strewn the skeletal remains of cities from a forgotten age. Once populous, these desert mountains are now home only to numerous wild beasts. The climate there is cooler as the altitude increases, but it is still relatively hot and dry. Small lakes can be found at the highest altitudes where glaciers once sat eons ago.
Just beyond the northern reaches of the Dek Var, as if to mock the Arak's is the Kom; a vast lake. While inaccessible to the Arak's its tributaries flow through the Dek Var supplying water to hidden canyons and underground rivers guarded jealously by many tribes. The few oases’ found throughout the desert are fought over by nomadic tribes.
To the south of the Dek Var lies the vast expanse of the Manloow, home to wandering Ilifadüdur, humans and other people, long ago displaces. Many are nomads and traders who occasionally attempt to skirt the western borders of the Dek Var, seeking trade in the northern lands.
Vegetation is rare in the Dek Var but there are some hostile desert plants used for food and folk medicine. Seasonal rainstorms bring the black desert to life as if in an instant. Plants and flowers spring up from desolate landscapes and the Dek Var is transformed into a place of alien beauty.
Despite its appearance, some animal life thrives here. Fierce creatures and reptilian beasts inhabit this vast and perilous desert, particularly in the northern and coastal areas, but the creatures that are most valuable are the Moroskaa; called the Black Camel by Manloow natives.