The Shallows, or the Shallow Layer, is the "top" layer of The Void. It can be accessed by Feline Tome Knights. This interdimensional locale acts as a protective membrane to the Void which helps to contain its monstrosities and prevent anything from seeping out. The Shallow Layer, also known as the "Bouncy House of the Void" due to its spongey flooring, has been frequented by members of House Felis for centuries as a method of quick travel through space.
The Shallows appear as a white/grey space which stretches out far into the horizons beyond. There is no entrance nor exit, one simply portals in. Everything is brightly lit although there is no apparent source of warmth or light. The Layer is littered with various items which are often part ways through sinking through the membranous floor below. These are items which have fallen through the Realm and into the Void. There is no order or sense to the items of the Shallow Layer, but the cats of House Felis often take these items happily, whether this be bookshelves or a forgotten meal. Over time, items in the Shallow Layer sink down into the Main Void below. Small objects sink quickly, while larger objects can take months to fully sink down. Sable Aradia theorizes that this is the final resting place of missing socks, and possibly lost keys as well.
From the Shallows, the cats of House Felis can gain access to anywhere in the Realm which is not magically sealed through the use of Literomantic portals. The Shallow layer is not directly mapped to the Realm and so a cat may enter, and open a portal a few feet away to travel to a wholly different part of the Realm. There are seemingly no laws on portal creation; it's tied to the magic of the cats themselves. One need not go to a specific location in the Shallows to generate a portal to another specific location, unless in a very specific circumstance.
The primary resource of the Shallows is the way it can be used to transcend physical space quickly. This was once an incredible asset to House Felis, and even today remains especially useful. The storage space it represents, which is (mostly) inaccessible to other Houses, is also incredibly useful.
The history of the Shallow Layer is closely linked to the history of House Felis. No one knows exactly when the Layer was first accessed as this was prior to the written record of House Felis. Regardless, the Shallows have been a part of daily Feline life consistently throughout the ages. Prior to the establishment of road networks, House Felis utilised the Shallows to move exported goods to far-off kingdoms, allowing for a boom in industry and the renowned success of the river-side settlement of . However, with the establishment of regional trade routes, the Shallow Layer was only utilised for international trading and became more of a place of leisure and novelty for the cats. Today, beyond personal travel, the Layer is often used to test out new literomantic spells as there is surely nothing too fragile in the Shallows to be harmed. In general, the Shallow Layer is seen as just another part of Kittering to the cats of House Felis, as mundane as the river that runs through the town. There is some indication that it used to be possible for Lagomorphic Literomancers to access The Shallows as well, but if so, that knowledge has been completely lost to House Lapin for centuries.