There are thirteen Imperial Gardens at the Palace of Waiting, consisting of the twelve outer color gardens and the single inner Tree Garden.
The color gardens lie between the outer wall of the compound and the outer wall of the circular palace, in twelve sections, each filled with flowers of the same hue, forming a giant color wheel when seen from above, with the red, or ‘blood’, garden containing the path to the front gates, and the green, or ‘life’, garden on the opposite side containing the palace orchard.
The Tree Garden, which fills the inner courtyard of the palace, contains flowers of every color and is connected to each of the color gardens by twelve tunnels. At the center of the Tree Garden is an ancient fruiting murako named Patience, surrounded by a brass fence built by the Prophet Matali when he planted the tree in 41 YL. The base of the tree is currently within two meters of the fence, and is expected to break it some time in the next two to five centuries.
Taken as a whole, the Imperial Gardens are believed to depict a mystery of the faith and predict the time of the fulfillment of the Promise. The usurper Welkettik cut the limbs off the tree in 970 YL and had it burned, but it put out shoots again on the day of his death and has since recovered completely.
-Entry for the Imperial Gardens in Wandering Dankar: The Imperial City, 30th edition, 2100 YL.
This chapter is part of the in-progress serial web novel The Unbroken Blade, intended to be book one in The Shattered Empire trilogy, and features a mix of sci-fi and thematic elements reminiscent of near-future military fiction such as Gasaraki or Isaac Hooke’s Atlas series and sci-fi combat classics such as Mechwarrior/Battletech and Gundam. The story is rich with battle and conflicts of honor and conscience arising around a civil war on the forested world of Dankar, far from our own, but is primarily focused on how the main characters deal with the challenges they face, not their machines or their world. Follow this blog to receive each chapter as soon as it is released. Like and share to give me a shot of encouragement. Full chapter updates on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday.