Great Tetzcotzinco Garden
Purpose / Function
The gardens serve two contradictory functions. One, the circumferential loop is to provide a recreational area for families on picnic, outside school classes or simply as a lounge area. Second, the inner area is grimly maintained as a tortuous prison to the highest lawbreakers.
There are two sections to the Great Garden: the outer gardens and the inner maze. The areas most visible to the public are clipped neatly and tastefully adorned with pretty flowers and sweet fruits for all to experience. Inside the maze, however, was several avenues of parallel, crisscrossing and impenetrable thorn hedges thrice the height of a man. By design, the inner areas are sectioned off and made to look sinister, especially by night.
The entrance into the garden's inner maze is heavily guarded and the knowledge of its location kept to the sole Head Gardener of Tetzcotzinco. The outer gardens, by contrast, is open to all with many stone archways, grass pathways and twin fruit trees marking entry ways for the public to visit.
Sensory & Appearance
While it looks spectacular on the outside. On the inside, those sentenced to die in the maze are overcome by its stink and the shadowy blackness remains in the day as it is at night. The run and wander for anyway out for days until they are driven mad by hunger and lack of human contact. For the screams and crying heard by the garden keepers going about their work, is the garden also called the "Maze of Madness".
Garden KeepersThere are gardeners and landscape professionals employed by the state who tend to small parks for the city's beautification through most of the districts and provinces. The Garden Keepers are specially nominated by three Teiks and Teek families to work in the garden.
PlantsA rich variety of flora primarily grown through the lands of the Triple Alignment and a few carefully cultivated ones originating from the Cold Swamp and Brine Marshes.
PestsRodents and small birds rush within, above and below the expanse of fruits and hedges; of which the Garden Keepers deploy dogs, cats and larger birds of prey to control them.
Hazards & Traps
In its many phases of expansion, all consideration was given to minimizing the environmental effects such a large artificial change would have on the land. However, the most controversial phase had to do with the optimization of the city's waste management. Under the reign of Emperor Zelhua, the covered waterways beneath the chinampas of the central garden were turned into a hidden reserve that collected human wastes to fertilize the hedges above. The roots of these plants grew long and deep, and their branches and leaves turned black. When the worst of the worst are released into the maze, gases that have been fermenting in the waste water under them, rises into the prisoners' breath which alters their perception of their environment and themselves, making their slow degradation even more harrowing.