Floating high over the lands of Ro, the Shimmering Citadel appears to be a remnant of the Plane of Sky, though how such an artifact survived the cataclysms in the distant past is not told here.
Its inhabitants cluster in various layers, as happens in many other areas in these desert lands. The highest point is the djinn’s palace; the bowels of the floating island house wretches of various sorts.
Holding the beautifully landscaped and manicured Citadel aloft is a series of dark caverns inhabited mainly by naga and their captives.
It is important to tread carefully as there are many crevasses that open up to the lands below, sending the unwary traveler to a grisly end.
Wind whistles through the caverns, disguising the hissing of the serpent-like naga and obscuring the sounds of other less-than-savory inhabitants.
The exterior grounds of the Shimmering Citadel are refreshingly colorful. In contrast to the dark caverns below and the mind-numbing dullness of the desert, the Citadel is a treat for the eyes.
Emerald green lawns with neatly trimmed flowering bushes are enclosed by exquisitely carved sandstone and granite walkways. Beware the wisps that maintain the grass!
The djinn guard the Citadel, patrolling its meandering walkways with the help of ferocious shimmering guardians.
With the torso of a Dervin and a lower half of smoke, the djinn can be a startling sight. Rumors abound that the djinn congregate near the Citadel to retain some measure of contact with the old Plane, thereby maintaining their magical abilities.
Inside the Citadel itself, the djinn employ others as servants, including humans, gnomes and even a sphinx!
Though a beautiful place, the Citadel is sterile, somehow. It lacks the warmth and vitality of other places through which I have traveled.
The djinn concern themselves with books and poetry, when they might use their magical abilities to bring water to the desert to help the roaming bands of Dervins.
Still, a visit to the Shimmering Citadel is a dream-like experience worth every minute.