And now for something completely different. A few days ago I ran across an article on io9 called The Most Jaw-Droppingly Beautiful Cliff Top Hotels Ever Built. Now, I always like to look at beautiful architecture, but I'm not in the habit of sharing it on my blog (Facebook is a different matter; you get a fuller view of my interests there than you do here), but this pertains to the topic at hand. As I was writing What Do You Give the Alien Who Has Everything?, I had pictures in my head of how the Imperators' compound should look, but I never found any real pictures to convey the scale and beauty of it. Then I ran across this article.
The first picture, in particular, is almost completely true to my vision (All it lacks are the colonnades). The last one really isn't very true to my vision at all, but it's just so gorgeous that I had to include it anyway. And everything in between will at least give you a better idea of what was in my head as I was writing.