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Payratheon is the name of a vanished city built on an orb of Minethys eons ago. That city is long buried, but its sand-drowned avenues, crumbled towers, and silted porticos still remain far below the shifting surface of the layer. Sometimes the shifting sands reveal Payratheon for an hour or a longer, but it is always engulfed again by the sands, smothering most creatures who were tempted by its appearance and entered the sand-blasted city.

Particularly resourceful adventurers have burrowed down to find outlying suburbs of the city during its phases of submersion. Tales of terror walk hand in hand with these accounts, which tell of dragonlike “sand gorgons” that swim through the sand as if water. Also mentioned are the remnants of former inhabitants that force their way through the streets as petrified undead, so weathered and eroded that little can be discerned of their race or original size.