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The Oasis Belt

While the majority of Odemark is parched, windswept dunes there is a band of green around the equator. Travelers crossing over from one hemisphere into the other must first traverse an uncharacteristic lush and verdant region. A webwork of pools, ponds and lakes spreads for hundreds of miles. It is considered only a legend since the collapse. A story told to children whose hope is slipping by harried parents. In hushed whispers by those planning their great adventures over beverages of questionable origin. Of all who have set course across the wastes, few return. Those that do are bent and twisted with feverish madness. In their ravings, they confirm that yes, the stories are true.   The Oasis Belt is a four to seven hundred mile wide equatorial region. Composed mainly of small bodies of water with green spaces in between. Some areas are forested jungle and others more like grassy fields. It sprawls beyond this area into the desert turning the landscape into scrubland for a few hundred miles. The insectoid and reptiloid megafauna of the open desert gives way to more diverse species.   Pre-holocaust roads and structures have been slowly consumed by the vegetation, but remain to be rediscovered. Travel through here can be difficult, especially for the large machines used to move through the desert. The ground is soft, moist and vine covered. Heavy machines may become mired, entangled or entirely swamped in a hidden pond. Many remain so, slowly being consumed by time. For those used to the open spaces of the wastes this can be a very claustrophobic experience. The low hiss of the sand moving and shifting is gone, replaced by the rustle of leaves and scampering of animals out of sight. The heat diminishes only slightly and a hazy, cloying mugginess pervades which drenches all in pools of sweat.   Druidic tribes make homes here, watching over the greenscape and living with the land. Under their hands the oases continue to thrive and slowly expand. A cult has arisen which call themselves Rejuvenists. Rejuvenists steal plants from the oasis belt and bring them back into greenhouses hidden in mountains and valleys. The Druids are vigilant against the destruction caused by these raiding outsiders.

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