Gahla is a beautiful yet turbulent planet whose continents were long ago submerged beneath a vast and roiling ocean. The Saltsea covers the entirety of the planet's surface, save for a few rare anchorspires
. These colossal stalagmite formations jut upwards into the clouds like obelisks, rising from volcanic deepsea rifts. They last but for a few centuries before crumbling back down to rubble due to Gahla's incessant winds and waves.
High above the saltsea, ayrlands float atop sweeping plains of clouds, carving trails through the expanse as they wander the Whitesea. But level and stable ayrlands are rare. They are quickly colonized, meticulously developed, and jealously guarded. Only on these fragile scraps of solid ground can anything resembling civilization be constructed.
Gahls can scarcely get too comfortable though, for the wicked howling winds of Tormunthrask never cease blackening the skies with its tainted ashen clouds. The eternal storm drags the ayrlands southwards towards the center of the polar wastes, where a bottomless pit swallows everything that approaches.
Life on Gahla
Using magma-forged meteorite chains, it is possible to leash the ayrlands to the anchorspires. This risky venture earns the Chainlanders a few decades of blessed stability, so long as the tethers hold and the ayrland’s jets keep puffing. But these semi-permanent settlements are only for the lucky and wealthy few.
Most people live on the wing, stopping at the ayrlands to trade, harvest resources, and hunt game. They craft gliders, balloons, and ayrships from whatever they can find - flutewood, whale bone, spider silk, wyvern leather, and archave feathers. They live ever on the move northwards, following the gold rushes and the flux blitzes. Others accompany the migrations of giant birds or colossal Reefback sea-turtles.
Towards the southern climes, the oceans eventually cool and freeze over, and a slurry of ice and fallen ayrlands comes together to form a shifting and shattered glacial continent known as Fryggidios . Here, rugged adventurers eke out a threadbare existence, and delve bravely into the Deepshards to raid the tombs of fallen nations frozen under the ice, before they are crushed and sink for good.
An Inevitable Fate
In the skies above Fryggidios, the ash-laden winds of the black tempest draw the ayrlands toss the ayrlands to and fro but mostly down. The evacuations of these forgotten settlements is a frantic and tragic affair as the abyss draws closer.
Even those who never venture into the chasm find that merely gazing into its depths leaves them scarred both physically and mentally - with memories ripped away from the fabric of their psyche. Most people do their best to avoid the Wickening Curse, but for some, the relief of those missing memories becomes an addiction. Gladly they jettison their burdens into the Abyss, until little is left of the victim but a simple-minded hollow, or a vicious Ghast.