In The Sleeper Sword a curious place is unveiled, a Flatland with seasons, and first amongst the territories is the Falcon Isles:
The Falcon Isles were a glory to behold. In full colourful spring bloom the fertile land was alive and awake. Farmland sprouted green and herds of cattle, sheep and goats fed off lush new growth. Little cottages nestled in folds, stood prettily beside clear streams and rivers, and lovely hamlets dotted the meandering landscape.
Further afield large tracts were forested, evergreen pines for the most part, but also stately oaks, elms and chestnuts. Plantations of wattle, sugar cane and tea flew past beneath the belly of the swift flyer.
Still further, large herds of wild buffalo and antelope roamed newly greened plains, and eagles, herons, vultures, hawks, wild geese and other smaller waterfowl vied for space along the shores of natural emerald lakes. Small mountains were draped in the lace of countless waterfalls and in their privacy wolves played in abandon and great cats climbed the heights with majestic solemnity.
They came to the ocean and it was a frightening thing. Gunmetal grey, movement that knew no tides, it clashed constant, contrary breakers and was soundless. That was the scariest, the lack of sound when there was so much action. It was sobering, entirely alien, and Tial turned the craft to hug the coast.
Both averted gazes from the water to look upon the land.
Long stretches of brown beach were followed by immense cliffs. In some areas the land wound down green and smooth to meet the water and sometimes the cliffs were black, then white. Gulls flew noisily and swooped into the sea, but did not dwell there. Other than birds nobody fished these waters and no one lived close to it. The first signs of habitation began inland.
Tial shrugged at Torrullin’s raised eyebrows, and headed inland.
Peace returned and it was appreciated more after the strangeness of the ocean. They over-flew the once doomed lands of the Enforcer enclave, now more wholesome and glorious than its neighbours, and entered the flower counties. Bluebell, Primrose, Daffodil, Violet, Petunia and Rose, more, and from their bird’s eye view it was clear why the counties were named thus. In the few days since Torrullin’s arrival the bulbs and bushes transformed from dormant into vibrant showmanship and the counties were awash in colour.
Tial then took them to the other side of the isles, east, west, depending on your view, and slowed over what was once a broad swath of land connecting the severed land to the gigantic landmasses in the distance.
Here they did pause to study the forbidding ocean, but when Torrullin asked whether they wanted the submerged land bridge restored, Tial shook his head in definitive denial. The Falcon Isles were self-sufficient, he said, and inhabited by peace-loving peoples – not so elsewhere.
Tial turned the craft, leaving without a backward glance.