Bostonia is on its surface a glimmering jewel of urban success. High strung gondolas, wide and well walked sky bridges, and public airships ferry people above while the pneumatic tube of the metro juts folks around at and below street level. Resplendent skyscrapers with fabulous edifices give way to
The city sprawls further than they have people to fill it with, but in opposition to the sparsely peopled suburbs people have converted to agriculture and hideaways where the overgrowth has not simply reclaimed the lots amidst the decaying buildings. Still, the old veins of the city run above and below these places, offering ample catwalks and underground tunnels to get around or live in.
Within Bostonia proper the towering spires of Diesel Town emit a constant flow of smog. Heavy industry and direct access to import\export facilities at the port have made Bostonia a refinement and shipping hub. The ports themselves have towering cranes and massive shipyards to produce nautical vessels and airships alike, with not a few K-Field Generator manufacturers present for making full size gravity-defiant airships.
Islands that glide over the waves and raise storm walls against any perturbation, the Floaters are moving paradises sustained by the wealth that flows through Bostonia. The affluent live, work, and play here--far removed from the smokey reality of the inner city or bustling melting pot of the harbour.
Southwest along the main neck of land, a considerable green space exists. While nominally a park, it has been settled by small enclaves of political radicals who take in transients willing to pay lip service to their cause. Occasionally Bostonia RiCon is sent in to clear the settlements out, a process that inevitably ends in blood. The more resilient groups have grown nomadic or literally underground.
Skyhooks and hover pads allow the easy docking and unloading of aerial vessels across the city, adding to Bostonia’s alarming array of transit options.
Bostonia’s industrial-shipping empire has made it a stronghold for the Capital party, with constituents eager for politicians to vouchsafe their gains against the nayying of Populists who indicate poor public health, a chronic failure to curtail the spread of the Diamond Mouth morphological condition, and general poverty for the masses in spite of a growing economy as signs of exploitative practices.
Even the Unionists have some degree of sympathy for the situation in Bostonia, which means even more than the usual treasure trove of the elite is at the Capital party’s fingertips.
The various Wards of Bostonia host fierce local elections in the hopes of an Alderman who will make a difference for their sector of the city. Ultimately this takes the form of roadblock politics where every Wards sabotages every other Ward’s aspirations until they try going about them illegally during judicial deadlocks in the courts or simply giving up on their original promises in favour of promising to make the other Wards pay for preventing their goals by sabotaging other Wards’ goals until their pet project is approved of.
Corruption is common in Bostonia, and the real power lies in money and the port.
Bostonian society is highly stratified. The wealthy and those who cling their coattails live in varying degrees of luxury just off the coast on Floaters. Miraculous medical technology and the latest technology are always available. On the mainland the working wealthy gather in the well preserved sky lofts and open air patios in well maintained and highly policed parts of town.
In Diesel Town, though, there is only industry and smog. Most police action is suppressing unions or guarding company property, with departments’ serially understaffed to defend the tens of thousands of residents in the hundred stories of industrial slum built between the bones of ancient skyscrapers and amidst the bellies of long-forgotten industrial facilities. New facade and a constantly growing network of steel beams deceive those not in the know into believing these wonders were erected wholly by the contemporary locals, but once inside the preponderance of orphaned pipes, ancient electrical components, and well-looted computer consoles tells a different story.
Most Bostonians go between life in reasonable but cramped accommodations and work in the smoggy Diesel Town but for those who work on the higher floors maintaining the chimneys and doing other important maintenance tasks, a few dollars more can be offered to live and work on-site and on-call. These people effectively become trapped in a cyclical daily work routine that leaves no time for living until lung accident, disease, or both result in them being laid off. They know this going in, and just hope to survive the accident and have earned enough to live off of by the time they’re eventually driven out.
An agrarian minority enjoys free ranging in the ruined urbs outside Bostonia, but the rivalry with neighbouring states
especially Rhodescan make proximity to that No Man’s Land a dangerous way of life. Of course it’s still safe enough most years to live in peace turning a bit of a profit, but
Shipping, Akroydiesel splitting, heavy industry--and a thriving petri dish of breweries, surprisingly, give Bostonia a strong local market. Of course their ship building has always been a pillar of industry as well, employing many in the laborious effort of designing and crafting ever larger vessels to ply the seas and skies.
The service industry thrives along the transit lanes, but in the cracks and beyond the functional tube stations one finds a market culture far enough from routine police inspection to plausibly move some less-than-legal goods. Any kind of arms or munitions from across the world can be had here, for those who know where to go. Of course they’d best bring their fattest pocketbook: black marketeering always comes with a hefty markup.
Smuggling is not an uncommon profession amongst the locals, and many captains of sea and sky hang their hats at the various pubs and taverns across town to enjoy the brew, offload their cargo, and lay low in plain sight amidst the preponderance of airships and rough types flowing through the ports of Bostonia.
Surly pirates, zealous RiCon, equally zealous labour organizers, and petty criminals threaten those who travel Bostonia above, below, and even at street level. What’s worse the bat-winged man-sized Smog Races that fly out of their hidden roosts at night thirsty for blood in the industrial district have a funny habit of giving their prospective meal a nice thirty story drop before digging in to make them more agreeable.
There are all manner of subterranean, water borne, and ground based creatures stalking for their next meal and fully considering humans when sufficiently hungry. Most have adapted some form of urban camouflage or hard-to-detect hunting routine that renders them a persistent public menace. A wide ranging bounty has been put out on all such creatures, subsidized by the corporate types who hate the inefficiency brought about by replacing labour.