The Res, The Flats, The Mountain, The River, The Wasteland

In Sisters of Light, the initial book of the series Dancers of Light and Darkness, Iya and Sweet-Star head due north from Iya's mother's house, straight into the foreboding clefts of the High Mesa.  Their later sojourn with the Free-Rangers, across the Frontera, is off-map to the southwest. 

 

The activities around Riverpark and Tan-kaya-ho, and in the central Flatlands and the West Hills, lies pretty much in the middle of the map.  The Lower Valley refers to the farmland, and loosely is applied to both east and west Valley, as well as the plateau north of Riverpark.

 

The desert is nearly flat, hence, "The Flatlands," and its alkaline, waterless nature.  The Dry River arroyo runs west to east across the northern Flatlands, but only tepid, undrinkable, algae-ridden water ever flows through its meandering ravines.  The Flats encompass a huge territory--all the way from the south Wastelands all the way to the northwest--until the haunted, arroyo-pocked, rugged clay and rock-strewn land finally meets the Little River.

 

At the north end of the Lower Valley, Dah'jeh-le-vah's clear, life-sustaining water meets the muddy water of the Big River at Diablo Crossing.  The Lower Valley is a rich, fertile farmland, irrigated by an historically old system of canals built by the First People.

The land around Dah'jeh-le-vah, the Mountain of the Ancestors

During the last two centuries, even more of the Lower Valley was turned into productive farm and ranchland by the addition of a viaduct that spans the Little River at its deepest and narrowest point, just above Elkhorn Crossing.

 

The Mountain is...well, mountainous.  The entire range of peaks is simply referred to as the Mountain.  Below its ancient heights, on a lone knoll in the center of the most-haunted part of the Flats--or Wasteland, as many of the Natives prefer to call it--Shatwa Hei and his Medicine Brothers, Jonathan Stillwater and Stands-By-The-Brook, stand guard over the Flatlands.

Iya-Ko-Naya and her Sister-cousin, Sweet-Star, when they are up-Mountain, live with

 their Aunt Ilnatta on Dah'jeh-leh-vah's heights as close as they can be to the Ancestors who walk among the People.

It is there, beside the storm-tossed, granite-and-basalt peaks of the Mountain of the Ancestors that the Spirit-walking Ancient Ones infuse all of the Seekers, Warriors and Healers with from-before-Time Memories of their Ancient past. 

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