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Backwater is a town in Araethura, Rathain, on the shore of Daenfal Lake. It sits on the border between Rathain, Melhalla, and Athili.

A Paravian road passes Backwater between Fiaduwynne and Daenfal Lake. Town trade traffic is forbidden on the road west of Backwater.

Backwater is known for its furs, textiles, and spun yarn.


Backwater features three-story houses shingled in slate. The town has a traders' market supplied by mule trains from Jaelot.

Role in the Story

Spoiler warning: Contains plot elements from multiple books in the series.

Grand Conspiracy

Third Age 5669: Fionn Areth's sword trainer is from Backwater.

Initiate's Trial

Third Age 5923: With Arithon on the run in Lanshire, Selidie Prime sends a message through the Koriathain's secretive message relay to coordinate a final trap. The message is received by a high-ranking Senior in Barish, who coordinates with subsequent pigeons to East Bransing, Backwater, and Ostermere.

Tarens reprovisions in Backwater while escorting Esfand and Siantra back to Halwythwood.

Destiny's Conflict

Third Age 5923: Dakar has a vision of Arithon swearing an oath to the Ettinmere shamans while visiting a whore-house.

Third Age 5924: Dakar slips away from Tarens and Cosach in Backwater, enroute to Ettinmere.

After failing to convince Arithon to aid the clans at Tiendarion, Tarens opts to seek summer work in Backwater rather than returning to Halwythwood. In late summer, Asandir charges him to help Esfand defend the clans in Halwythwood and offers his mount, who was once Isfarenn, to speed the journey north.