A ruhuimur or dragon of the legions of the Masters, with its tower and its flamepipes
The diagram to the right shows a plan of a typical cothon. Around its edge are the deep vaults in which the dragon ruhuimur are stabled. Within this are two further rings, of piers. The innermost one is where the dragon towers proper are stored. The ring between this and that of the vaults is where the tower bases are stored. The two major components of each tower are suspended upon beams and rigging above […]
The drawing to the right is one that I produced in 1982, and that predates the writing of the Stone Dance by decades – showing how long I have been brooding ideas for the books. The diagram above shows the final form that a dragon and its tower took. The original image was produced in 1993, but was constantly modified during the writing of the First Edition of The Third God as I began to understand […]
The sketch above shows a Master sitting in the command chair of a dragon tower. Before him is the lattice bone screen that he looks out through. On either side of him kneel his Righthand and Lefthand, with the tubes connected to their helmets that allow them to be talked to by other crew in various parts of the tower. At both lower corners of the drawing can be seen the ‘voice forks’ that the […]
The dragons of Molochite’s second line—with tower and hide set alight by Osidian’s flamepipes—crash, maddened with pain, through the labyrinth of the sartlar corpse mounds. Eventually the fire kills them, so that they fall where they stand. I made these two sketches to better understand some scenes that appear in the book. You should be able to recognize which scenes these illustrate.
There are many categories of military personnel maintained by the Masters throughout the Commonwealth, but all of them wear metal service collars that carry sliders. One of the functions of these sliders is to indicate rank. The second diagram shows some of the work that culminated in the tables displayed in the first diagram. These tables show the ranks and insignia for the Ichorians, for legionaries and auxiliaries. Those displayed cover ruhuimur (or dragon) crews […]
Excluding the double Ichorian legion, there are 46 others distributed around the Guarded Land. Theoretically each consists of 27 dragons or ruhuimur, each accompanied by a squadron of 400 aquar-mounted auxiliaries. The dragon, with its tower and flamepipes, is the ultimate, terrifying expression of the power of the Masters.