The Dark Garden is one of the secret academies established by Raja Rudatha in order to train recruits for his elite fighting and espionage units. This particular academy is situated literally within a garden, which is reportedly filled with a variety of poisonous spiders which serve to discourage intruders and further the training of the recruits. 

 The staff of The Dark Garden are divided into two main groups: teachers and inquisitors. The teachers were responsible for making sure their pupils learned everything they would be expected to know in their role within the Spider Prince's plans. The inquisitors directed periodic meetings with the recruits, conducted in small, enclosed rooms, assessing their performance - and meting out punishment, if warranted.