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The City is evenly divided into six sections (see: Cantons) by a series of aqueducts. These aqueducts run radially from the center of the City, carrying water from the Tower moat to the outer edge of the disk, where it falls off into oblivion. Besides providing water to the whole of the City, the aqueducts form a vital means of quick and reliable transportation.
The water from the aqueducts is clean when it emerges from the moat, perfectly safe for swimming, drinking, and washing. By the time the water reaches the edge of the City it will have picked up some pollutants, but is usually still fairly safe. One would be probably be wise to avoid drinking water that has passed through the Smoke Canton however, and water that has passed through the Night Canton has been known to carry unusual magical effects.
The aqueducts are made from the same white stone as the Tower. Each is 100 meters (300 feet) wide and banks steeply to a depth of 9 meters (30 feet) in the middle. Except near the edge of the City, the water flows calm and even, and can easily be forded or swam across. The aqueducts are fed by the Tower moat, which is fed by six large fountains at the base of the Tower.
The ground level of the City is not uniform, rising and falling in hills and valleys across the disk. The aqueducts, however, must follow a steady uniform descent from center to edge, and do not follow the City terrain around them. As a result, there are areas where the aqueducts form canals at or even below the surrounding street level, while in other areas the aqueducts form massive stone walls that tower over their surroundings. The sides of these walls are not entirely vertical, but are quite sharply inclined, and difficult to scale. Often there are tunnels running under an aqueduct to allow traffic to pass, but in other areas they are simply a barrier, like any mountain or cliff. It is not unusual for a road to abruptly end at an aqueduct wall. Sometimes residents will build ramps or even flights of stairs to allow traffic to pass over a high aqueduct, or bridges to cross a low aqueduct, but these are always vulnerable to being lost or destroyed by a reconfiguration.
At the outer rim of the City, each aqueduct ends in a massive stone sculpture that operates as a huge waterspout, crowning the endless waterfalls where the water exits the City. Highly stylized and abstract, consisting of only a few sharp lines and arcs, the sculptures are thought to in some way resemble mythical beasts, and have been named the Dragons. Another six identical but much smaller sculptures are found at the center of the City, forming the Tower waterspouts that feed the moat. These are commonly called the Little Dragons.
Each of the dragon-heads is associated with a bridge, smoothly arced stone structures that are the only permanent City-created bridges over the aqueducts. Six near the outer edge, forming part of a long road that encircles the entire City, and six at the center of the City, where the aqueducts first meet the moat. The "dragon" title is usually used interchangably, and depending on context may refer to only the statues or the bridges, or to both simultaneously.
The aqueducts are not entirely identical to each other. Each has a different pattern of divots, cracks, and openings along its length. Where these openings exist above the surrounding ground level, water runs out of the aqueducts and forms into streams and creeks, spreading into the cantons and often pooling in ponds and lakes in the lowest areas. These pools often become the center for parks and green spaces throughout the City, or are used to turn water wheels or serve other industrial purposes. In heavy rains, pools and capillary rivers may flood, but the aqueducts themselves never overflow.
The aqueducts provide a vital means of transportation through the City. The water is constantly busy with ferries and small boats, carrying people across from one canton to another, or up and down the aqueducts to more distant destinations. It is often faster and more reliable to hire a boat taxi to take you up to the moat and back down another aqueduct than it is to cross a canton by foot or car.
The Crown goes to some effort to regulate boat traffic on the aqueducts, to keep the waterways from becoming too crowded. Heavy industrial traffic is almost entirely banned from the aqueducts, though the relatively shallow waterways already discourage such activity.