Delmont

Pronunciation: DEL-mont
Name of the people: Delmonte (DEL-mon-tee) (sing.) / Delmontes (pl.)

When the Segovax cluster was first discovered in 4800, and in the first stages of terraforming on the outer fringes of Terran space, the planet of Delmont suffered as pioneers flooded from other planets to see what futures they could make for themselves there. The planet was used as a staging area to explore further into the cluster, but before any true structure or order could be implemented, people were colonising the juvenile planet and stripping it of its rich natural resources. Before long there was nothing left to be scraped from the planet’s bare surface and the beginnings of a rambling city started to form as people searching for their new lives found that they could not afford to travel beyond Delmont into the rest of the newly discovered planets, causing population to soar from ill-managed immigration.

Now Delmont is infamous for its harsh acidic landscape, but more so for the sprawling stacks of city sectors piled on top of each other, creating a hazardous metropolis of hidden slums, chaotic trading points and urban mazes. The gigantic city of Delmont has spread upwards as well as outwards, with the very first settlers’ homes lost away in the deep, dank undercaverns, polluted by radiation and uncharted on any map.

Anyone of any importance who visits the planet is unlikely to see beyond the first few layers – they are the most recently built, rich, and well-organised of the planet, modern and utopian. On the top of the artificial surface is a beautiful, versatile landscape, well-terraformed and actively farmed to produce food for the wealthy few Delmontes who live near the surface. Immediately below are the official trade points, homes of the rich, and offices of the highest city officials who pretend to care. The Council of Delmont is presided over by The Castor, though history has shown that this role is usually filled by the self-serving and indulgent who, keen to line their own pockets, ignore the needs of the poorest and most vulnerable. 
Beneath this facade the population of Delmont is left to rot in the dark, in crumbling wards and sectors creaking under the weight of one another. The further down it goes, the poorer people get: ascending through the levels of the city is an insanely difficult task for anyone who starts off low down. People are kept out of sight, buried away, working long hours in disastrously dangerous factories and filthy living conditions. With little regulation or law enforcement, the ceilinged streets are rife with crime and gang warfare, and deep down there is word of slavery and worse. No-one truly knows how deep the sectors go, with some abandoned due to radiation, cave-ins, or similar. Many sectors remain uncharted, and there are tales of sectors being cut off from the rest of the city, left to fend for themselves.

Despite this, there is a strong sense of camaraderie among Delmontes: to find someone you can truly rely on and trust can make the difference between life or death, and finding your true “family”, whatever the circumstances, can be vital for survival. Many regiments in the military from Delmont are known for forming a sense of belonging that goes beyond their work. They are also known to be very resourceful, knowing the most efficient ways to make do in tough times, leading to an affinity for Engineers and Medics in logistical positions – perfect for battlefield surgery and quick fixes. A Delmonte believes everything has a use whether intended or not!

Beyond the standard equipment they are issued, Delmontes are able to make the best of their surroundings. Running by the philosophy “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it”, many of their possessions are worn down but still functional, or patched together – but if it serves its function, then it suits them just fine. Many members of the Delmont military are not suitably prepared for their time on the front lines, with sometimes incredibly basic training, but they are adept at solving their problems with unique solutions.

Many members of the Delmont military never saw the sky, sun, or stars before joining up and being shipped off-planet. For many the change is a huge shock: where is the ceiling? Who made the trees? What is rain for, and how is it leaking without any pipes? The idea of an environment where things exist without purpose is a strange one, and collides with their urban nature: for many of the Delmontes on lower levels, the sun is nothing more than a myth, an idealised concept to strive towards. Millions live and die without seeing the sun. When everything in your world has a purpose, even the concept of the self becomes a thing to trade, a commodity, and your own time and actions become as valuable as the result. Many treat joining the military as a serious action – becoming the cargo you are profiting from. There is a mantra that Delmontes know and often repeat: “Recruitment is investment. Deployment is transaction. Death is payment. Survival is advertisement.” 

Inspiration for characterisation: Mos Eisley (Star Wars), Shadowrun RPG, Necromunda, Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, gang culture, criminal underworld, black market trade.

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