The Environment is a huge, vast area found outdoors. It has no real boundaries other than the doors and windows that separate it from indoors. Zonal transitions within the Environment itself are often gradual and barely noticeable until the change is drastic and, in some cases, life-threatening.
Where Can I Find The Environment?
Simply stepping outside the front door of any comfortable indoor habitat will put you into intimate contact with the Environment. You will notice that the Environment seems to be divided into three distinct layers:
- Sky - Located directly above you, the sky is a type of three-dimensional ceiling decorated with an ever-changing mosaic. Bits of sky - in liquid, solid, and gaseous form - occasionally fall and usually cause some type of irritation or discomfort. Large bits, or massive quantities of bits, also fall. These are often fatal.
- Ground - The ground is usually situated below you, but due to terrain differences in The Environment, may actually occur just about anywhere, including above your head. The ground is heavy, dense, and unstable, and you should stay above it whenever possible.
- Yonder - The area to all sides of you not consisting of sky or ground is yonder. You share your occupancy of yonder with inanimate objects as well as other creatures. Because there never seems to be enough yonder to go around, conditions in the Environment sometimes get crowded. This is to be avoided. Crowding causes accidents, and accidents often end badly.
How Is The Environment Different?
In most cases, the Environment must be experienced as is. Unlike your indoor habitat, you have little control over the temperature, lighting, air movement, or humidity in the Environment. Your efforts to control the Environment are guaranteed to be temporary and insignificant in comparison with the Environment's vastness.
Within your indoor habitat, you are the master of your own comfort. The Environment, however, cares nothing for your comfort. You will never find comfort levels at an optimum. At best, the Environment can make you uncomfortable; at worst, it can cripple or kill you.
Dangers of the Environment
- Plants: Outdoor plants range from the mildly irritating (such as poison ivy, contact with which will result in a rash) to lethal (in the case of certain toxic fungi and carnivorous plants which feed on people's flesh.)
- Animals: Nearly every animal found in the Environment preys on people.
- Weather: Even harmless-seeming rain storms can produce deadly lightning, flash floods, mud-slides, and sinkholes. Xenosmilus preys on it.
How Can I Keep the Environment from Killing Me?
Stay inside. Lock all doors and windows. Huddle by the warm glowing warmth of your computer monitor and wait for further instructions.