The Shar

For all the ruins and artefacts buried beneath the shifting sands at the heart of the Pāll-tanír, there is no more mysterious nor desirable place for the intrepid explorer than the verdant crescent to the southwest of the desert, teeming with a wondrous abundance of life, the Shar. To those dedicated to unearthing the mysteries of this continent, lost to the scouring winds, the hot desert sands, and to the inexorable march of time, the Shar is the holy grail of discovery.   And yet, for all its allure, very few have managed to even come close to scratching the surface of the Shar's mysteries. Few have been brave enough—or foolish enough, depending on whom you ask—to attempt to cross into the thick jungle. Even fewer have returned, and of those that have, none managed to spend more than a few hours in the woods before being driven out.   Some say that there is a curse at work, or an angry nature spirit who refuses entry to her domain. If no one is brave enough, or skilled enough to venture through the jungle and survive, then we may never know the truth.
— Isa Temaros, Memoir of a Wanderer
  Properly known as Ila'Shar (/ɪlæʔ-ˈʃæɾ/) in Arventiri, the Shar is a dense jungle to the southwest of the Pāll-tanír. Sparse and cursory expeditions into the jungle, in addition to testimony from the settlers who live at the edges of the region, have revealed the staggering variety of life present there. This is especially notable when considering the relative barrenness of the rest of the continent beyond the borders of the jungle.   Despite millennia of civilized history on the desert continent, the Shar has never been properly explored. During the reign of the tussari centhiri, at the height of the Mulrakh empire, the Shar was branded as "Midan Muktalan," or "the untouchable land." Records recovered from Mukrakhan ruins in the vicinity of the Shar region appear to indicate that the tussari centhiri were quite fearful of the Shar and the surrounding area, though no justification for this stance has ever been found.   Following the fall of Mulrakh to the Krosha, no further attempts were made to explore the Shar until the arrival of the Dominion some millennia later. Though during the rebuilding the region around the Shar was resettled, attempts to clear space for settlements inside the jungle either failed to materialize or failed outright. It was during this time that much of the mythology and folklore centering on the Shar came into being.   In the modern day, the official stance of the Dominion is that it will not disturb the jungle unnecessarily, essentially depriving expeditions of support from the throne. While there is no outright prohibition on the exploration of the Shar, the inordinate cost in time, money, labor, and lives of such an expedition has been enough to dissuade any further journeys into the jungle.

Geography

Like much of the Pāll-tanír, the region surrounding the Shar is quite flat and featureless. Scholars have made a reasonable assumption that the land occupied by the jungle itself would be much the same, but the dense vegetation makes the true topology of the Shar's interior impossible to discern.
Alternative Name(s)
Midan Muktalan, the Untouchable Land
Type
Forest, Jungle (Tropical)
Location under
Included Locations
Inhabiting Species

Articles under The Shar



Cover image: Sandstorm by FlorentLlamas

Comments

Please Login in order to comment!