There were several areas labelled as Ice Fields on the various maps of the Malazan world. This was more likely a descriptive term rather than a recognised name for these regions.
See also: Ice Fields (Quon Tali)
The ice fields were a mix of topographies. Some areas were flat, endless wastes while others were jumbled fields of broken, upthrust shards of ice that appeared in countless shades of brown, green, and blue. Portions of the waste covered the remnants of an inland sea whose salt carved vast caverns in the ice. Tiny grey shrimp and barnacles lived in shallow pools. Cautious travellers probed the path ahead to avoid falling to their deaths through thinly covered pockets. Crevasses of enormous length crossed the ice fields as well, sometimes sealing themselves with ice over time.
The wastes appeared to be lifeless, but were in fact populated by hares, foxes, ground owls, white wolves, bears, and aranags. They were also the home of the strange, fur shrouded killers the Arapay tribe of the Edur called Jheck. The Arapay learned to travel in groups when hunting on the ice or risk being killed by the Jheck and having their body parts taken as trophies.
The Arapay spoke of huge, brown-furred beasts with ivory tusks who wandered the ice, but few believed their stories.
Lether's ice fields were likely magic in origin. In the book's prologue, Scabandari and Silchas Ruin led the Tiste Andii and Tiste Edur in battle against an army of K'Chain Che'Malle upon a vast flag-stoned plaza. The allied Tiste defeated the K'Chain Che'Malle and brought three of their Skykeeps crashing to the ground. Afterwards, Mael bid Gothos to encase the entire area of the carnage under the ice of Omtose Phellack. Scabandari, meanwhile, flew approximately 100 leagues south of the battlefield to imprison Ruin within an Azath Tower. This site would later be the location of modern Letheras, making the Lether ice fields a prime candidate for the site of the K'Chain Che'Malle battlefield.
In 1161 BS, the Edur Warlock King Hannan Mosag sent a party across the ice fields to find and return with a gift left by the Crippled God. Fear, Binadas, Trull, and Rhulad Sengar, along with Theradas and Midik Buhn crossed the wastes over several days while being stalked by Jheck. Taking shelter in a crevasse, they discovered a frozen stamped of hundreds of caribou frozen in the ice. Before they could retrieve the sword awaiting them, they were attacked by scores of Jheck and their wolves. On the return journey they observed what appeared to be a herd of mammoths.
Notes and referencesEdit
- ↑ Midnight Tides, Chapter 8, US SFBC p.256
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 Midnight Tides, Chapter 8, US SFBC p.247
- ↑ Midnight Tides, Chapter 8, US SFBC p.246/249
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Midnight Tides, Chapter 8, US SFBC p.246
- ↑ Midnight Tides, Chapter 8, US SFBC p.248
- ↑ Midnight Tides, Chapter 8, US SFBC p.247-248
- ↑ Midnight Tides, Prologue
- ↑ Midnight Tides, Chapter 8, US SFBC p.249
- ↑ Midnight Tides, Chapter 8, US SFBC p.258-266
- ↑ Midnight Tides, Chapter 8, US SFBC p.268