Posted by David Kim on

The following is a story concept for the sci-fi noir novel The Night Detective coming Christmas 2023


The subway system in Zone 1 along with everything in the district were built by sweat, blood and tears of the non-citizens. Kovacs didn’t much like that term “non-citizen”, it meant that the people living in this neighbourhood were somehow lesser than the ones in higher Zones. They were citizens like everyone else in Dante City. The good people of Zone 1 were once well-respected residents, but life dealt them cards that brought them down here. Once you were made to move to Zone 1 by the state, it was impossible to get out. John Kovacs has been living down here for about a decade now and he was well accustomed to the daily life. It wasn’t all bad. People living above regard the area as some sort of hell. The denizens here lived a normal life, they went to work, they fell in love, and they went to the movies. Zone 1 is not hell that people above make it out to be. The main difference between here and above was that the state did not extend its duties here.

The nine o’clock train arrived on time. The trains were made with carriages, engines and components “borrowed” from above. They were then decorated by the local artists. Kovacs quite liked the way the trains and every station looked, had kind of a mosaic, medieval charm to them. The doors opened and the people on the platform waited for the ones getting off to alight safely and even helped the invalid passengers. Humanity was well alive, even when the state deems them inhuman. Kovacs boarded the train. It was a short ride up to midtown. He had less than twenty-four hours to complete an assignment. Successful fulfilment of this job meant legal access to the higher Zones in the city. Though Kovacs had gotten used to the life in Zone 1, he was ready to move up in the city.

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