The Hyran Desert lies firmly in the interior landmass of the continent of Velruun
. East of the Kingdom of Gaelerad
, it encompasses most of the landmass of the nation-state of Dalsim
. While the edges of the desert range from sparse plant life to rocky crags its interior yields only to sand and the occasional jutting rock cliff standing like a sentinel over the plains of desolation.
Sweeping across the western edge of the desert is the Neulan River
, feeding down from the mountains of Gaelerad. It feeds into a large oasis where the city of Rila
has risen up over the years. The sparse vegetation quickly gives way to the plains of desolation. This large expanse of red sand desert accounts for almost 85% of the landmass of the desert. in its southern quadrant lies Suran's Forge
, a frequent pilgrimage location. As the desert gives way to its eastern edge, the sweeping savannah that makes up the remainder of Dalsim encroaches on its edges. The deep desert remains largely unmapped, though reports of several large mesas have been brought from those few who have survived the journey.
The desert has long made itself home to a variety of species. While the edges are hospitable and home to such plant life as the Liran Trileaf
(a medicinal shrub) and a variety of grasses, as caravans travel deeper into the desert, varieties of cacti and the occasional Sinari Deathfinger
tree sprout from the sands. The former being a great source of water for the weary traveler, and the latter - true to its name - a source for a potent poison.
The grasslands along the edges of the desert make a perfect home for several small mammals and reports of foxes, rabbits, and a large variety of rodents are common. The desert itself proves a far harsher mistress. As the sands consume more and more of the land the wildlife gives way to a trio of burrowers - a mouse the Takreese
, the Riqari sunbreaker
(a lizard of which there are few accounts and whose size has been described both as large as a house and small as a mouse), and the Dranvari
a large sandworm. This is to say nothing of the much smaller denizens - scarabs, scorpions, snakes, and the like.
A strange occurrence that occurs only in the deep desert, Suran's Sorrow is mostly known through reports over the centuries of caravan survivors. The sky opens and water rains from the heavens. While many this deep in the desert would rejoice at the water - those who have seen it and survived know better. The rain quickly overwhelms the land and those who remain in the area find themselves swallowed by the sands themselves. It is thought that this phenomenon has even swallowed settlements that once laid in the deep desert. Those who find water in the deep desert would be wise to give it a wide berth.