Zeitgeist: The Gears of Revolution
When Flint first began building factories, this inland lake fed by runoff from the Nettles was chosen by the City Governor Roland Stanfield. A massive construction project widened and deepened a natural river that ran from the lake to the harbor in Bosum Strand, providing easy transit of manufactured goods out of—and coal or heating oil into—the district. Homes of fishermen on the lake were demolished, while new flophouses and stacked tenements were erected for the waves of people who came from around the country seeking work in the new factories. Wealth poured into the city’s coffers, and into the pockets of those canny enough to lease their land here, rather than sell it.
During the Fourth Yerasol War seven years ago, factories in Parity Lake mass-produced firearms, cannons, and other weapons, and a lumber mill transformed logs from the Cloudwood into components for shipyards in Bosum Strand. New factories sprang up to create armor for men and ships, and soon even steam engines were being churned out to retrofit Risur’s fleet.
The war effort transformed Parity Lake from a booming collective of new businesses to a crowded, foul-smelling, soot-choked warren, overcrowded with the children of now second-generation factory workers, surrounding a pool that every day more resembles sludge than water. The police manage to keep crime down through heavy-handed measures; the district’s mayor Rosa Gohins has publicly stated that the safety and stability of the factories are more important than the moral of the factory workers.
In the past few months a spate of fires have struck around the district, which authorities suspect to be arson, possibly tied to the fey terrorist known as Gale (see the Cloudwood). The fires have precisely targeted individual homes and businesses related to local industrialists, but despite their minimal collateral damage, people in the district fear an inferno if one goes out of control.
More dreaded, however, is a killer known as the Ragman, who is said to stalk dark alleys near the canals and drag young men into the sewers. He has been tied to at least six disappearances in the past year, but so far law enforcement have taken few steps to catch him. Strange occult symbols scrawled on the undersides of bridges that cross the canal have provoked suspicions that the Ragman might be retribution from the long dead witches of Cauldron Hill.