Every time I think of my world, I remember visiting hardware shops and computer stores in the 90s. I recall going to places in Newark, little shops off the beaten path that were just stock full of parts, or stores in NYC that were equally daunting to get to, but enthralling when I walked in.
They were usually small and there were a few guys working, stereotypical nerds with pocket protectors and glasses, hunched over a motherboard or other electronic layout. And they were always surprised to see me walk in. It was something I grew accustomed to over the years. Girls were a rarity in that world then and though many women found it harrowing, I loved it. Being confident in my knowledge and skill, especially then, I could just as easily discuss chipboard tech as I could the newest video games. Stores like those were like libraries for me, full of stuff to catch my interest and keep me there for hours. Completely enthralled.
Setting up my world was like going back there. Like a modern-day Newark, the city is a hull of a town that it used to be. A little ragged on the edges, but if you had the nerve and took the time, you’d find some pretty cool stuff deep, deep inside. It has its seedy element and many of them run the underbelly of that place. The moneyed elite tend to cruise the outer shell, mingling in coffee shops and bars there as if skimming the surface will make them badass somehow. In some cases, the elite were the ones who hire those inside to get what they want and those in the bowels are willing to do just about anything to make that kind of bank.
Bank, after all, will buy them more gear.