Even before the asteroid hit, the city of Stoneport was divided into different classes, which spent the most time trying to reach their agenda and establish their ideas.
Miners, aka pre-brawlers
Miners believed that they were the pinnacle of the city, and everything would collapse without their strength. Even though miners were not paid well for their work, they still managed to make some money by smuggling precious minerals and selling them on the black market. It was a public secret, but the Stoneport Council allowed this to continue as long as miners did not abuse the system and produced enough goods to keep the city thriving. As for civilians, they knew that some miners make extra money in shady business, but they were too afraid to do anything. After all, all miners were like one huge family and always protected their own.
Getting in trouble with one miner would result in fighting against all the strongest men and women in Stoneport, who are used to excruciating conditions, brutal 14-hour shifts, and unbearable heat. Naturally, most miners also made extra money in illegal street fights as their bodies were as strong as those mountain rocks that surrounded the west side of Stoneport, and their minds were mentally charged for anything as long as they had their comrades’ loyalty and support. Besides the corruption induced by low wages, miners were good and dedicated working people. For those reasons, most people associated miners with grizzlies, the most powerful animals in the Stoneport region. And nobody wanted to make grizzlies mad.
Scientists, aka pre-alchemists
Miners have delivered tons of precious minerals to Stoneport, so the city council set up many laboratories in the city and invited the smartest scientists from all parts of the planet to Stoneport. According to official sources that were in the city council’s pockets, all laboratories worked transparently and for the sake of Stoneport’s civilians. That included coming up with formulas to obtain the top purity of minerals, improving existing household items by using the most durable compounds, and processing all the goods to increase their value. People respected scientists because they were the key to tech advancement and new levels of comfort in everyone’s daily lives.
What most people did not know, there were plenty of secret labs within the city of Stoneport. Some of those labs belonged to the city council, where they tested new ways to make and improve military equipment. Other labs were in the hands of the local mafia, which wanted to use science for greedy reasons, some of which included the creation of biotech drugs and forging the most precious minerals. Even though it was against the law, many scientists chose to work in those underground labs and conduct immoral experiments. It was all about the money — scientists in illegal labs could make multiple times more income and keep their secrecy. Many couldn’t resist.
There were a few rumors of an independent secret lab, which was operated by the mad scientist who went missing many years ago after a big accident in central Stoneport’s laboratory. People believed that the mad scientist survived the accident and went hiding in the shadows. Also, whenever someone went missing in Stoneport, people often assumed that it was the mad scientist who abducted the victim and did inhumane experiments on them in pursuit of forbidden ideas. It did not take long for humans to start associating scientists with serpents as they represented both good and evil while conducting various cold-blooded experiments in search of a creative life force and further tech advancement.
Mafia, police, bounty hunters, aka pre-gunslingers
Scientists were not the only ones who operated behind the scenes. The city of Stoneport was packed with guns, from the police force to mafia families to bounty hunters. Getting a gun wasn’t a big issue, but knowing how to use it to survive became a vital talent for many. Police established official shooting ranges where they trained to mercilessly hit the target under any circumstances, while mafia and gangs trained in the streets, shedding blood over precious minerals and power. At one point, the city council realized that their control was getting out of hand, so they had to think of creative solutions. That’s when the most ruthless bounty hunters entered Stoneport and started cleaning the mess that gangs left behind them.
Plenty of gangs and mafia families went extinct, but the ones that survived managed to find their way through the legal system and become somewhat untouchable. The city council was often blamed for letting the seeds of political corruption grow into a complex problem. However, the council was happy with the collateral damage that was caused as long as they kept their power and Stoneport remained among the leading cities on the planet.
Once the situation with wild gangs and shootings was dealt with, the police and bounty hunters took full control of the streets, while the remaining criminals found more delicate ways to obtain wealth. Being located near huge mountains, the city of Stoneport was always watched by gliding eagles. However, many people started talking that the city of Stoneport was also full of eagles on the ground — bounty hunters who got cocky and yet managed to keep relative peace in the streets.
To be continued…
Previous parts of EoF lore:
LORE #1 Pre-asteroid Stoneport