Warning: This is spoiler information for A Journey’s End and Collapsing Star.
Below is the first in a series containing some basic ‘setting’ information for my upcoming stories. This exercise forces me to get some needed detail about each ‘world’ down on paper, which sets the stage. While I will plan to take a “Shoot from the Hip” approach for Collapsing Star, this stage of planning is still needed. One cannot tell a story without some idea of the setting it is in.
Collapsing Star takes place in the city of New Orlando, which was re-built after a devastation wrecked the original city. The story takes place in the same ‘universe’ as Wildlight.
Set roughly 30-40 years on the future, New Orlando faces the same challenges as most large cities today. Poverty caused many homeless to take to the streets. In order to keep them clean, several ordinances were passed, forcing the vast majority of them to occupy the ruined part of the city now dubbed, The Old City. Many of them have set up tents, or live in abandoned buildings.
The new city, built north of the old city, (and now including what is currently Altamonte Springs). The majestic malls and buildings there rival anything seen in the state before. From a distance, the scene takes one breath away. Up close, however, plenty of corruption, violence and darkness keep the police busy around the clock.
Aside from various companies and corporations calling New Orlando home, numerous government groups and non-sanctioned factions also have their headquarters here, or, at least a branch. They include…
* Department of Special Forces (or DoSF, for short). A branch of the government dedicated first to enforcing all federal government regulations they pertain to super powered individuals, most know the DoSF for their draconian measure they use. Part of the law in effect requires that all super powered citizens register, and sign an agreement that they will only use their powers as a member of the DoSF. If they violate this law (and use their powers in the private sector, for example), they can be charged with a federal crime.
* Zealots – As the decades have past, tolerance of ‘intolerant’ religions, such as Christianity, continued to decline. Along with it, most people with religious background became less pronounced about their beliefs, if, indeed, they even possessed a strong conviction. However, a small minority of Christians, Mormons, Muslims and more, continued to speak out about their faith. If discovered, they quickly found themselves alienated. While rarely resulting in violence (outside of high density urben areas), mysteriously, most of them would lose their jobs, government subsidies and health benefits and more, forcing most of them to become impoverished . Because of this, the majority of zealots live in the Old City, where they cling to their faith.
* Various Gangs – Located in the streets and alleys of both the Old City and New Orlando, these gangs have existed for years. The police have been unsuccessful in eliminating these illegal groups, and the DoSF are generally stretched too thin. They include the cult of RaKaSha, an anti zealot cult, as well as Uloch’s Raiders, a group of misfits, most of which have twisted, unregulated cyborg implants.
Oftentimes, gangs clash with corporations, as they seek to destroy, plunder and steal from ‘the man. Since the police efforts to contain these criminals falls short, corporations take drastic steps to protect themselves, including advance technological deterrents and even illegal efforts to create superhumans of their own. The market to create, buy and sell various forms of protection blossomed, funded by the fat profit margins these corporations often times generate. Furthermore, other governments buy much of the technology they create as a result.
More to come soon!