Friday, December 06, 2013

Meet Orgood, the Wizard of Piley Court

We're at the midpoint between episode 1's release and episode 2's. "Batan's Caper" comes out next, but in the meantime, here's another introduction to a character within the story.

Orgood isn't mentioned in episode 1. He hovers in the background, but his name isn't mentioned until episode 2, and he becomes a larger presence throughout the course of the series.

Orgood is first an inventor, a Thomas Edison sort of person, but with a strongly amoral streak to his pursuit of new inventions. His work has had a huge impact on Spire City over the past decades, with new steam engines and clockwork constructs transforming life for many in the city. He's seen as a wonder worker, called the Wizard of Piley Court because of the location of his laboratory. He isn't as wealthy as he maybe could be, but he's certainly wealthy by the standards of Chels & gang, and he moves among high society and is welcomed even by the most exclusive, old-wealth sorts who live on the bluff overlooking Spire City's harbor.

Twenty years or so before the story begins, some of those super wealthy people were fretting about the numbers of poor people coming to live in the city. The industrial revolution, not least because of Orgood's own inventions that allowed for rapid changes in the factories of the city, drew in many people from the countryside inland from Spire City and from other nations as well. From what these rich people saw, though, too many of them weren't working. The numbers of beggars and immigrants were too much. What could you do, though? You couldn't just go around shipping them off somewhere.

That was when Orgood had his idea. When rats became a problem, no one complained that you couldn't kill them. They just hired more rat catchers. What if he could find a way to target those people who weren't working in the factories or other productive jobs, and simply turn them into common pests? The rat catchers and other vermin hunters would have more work, and the infestation would ease up quickly. In theory. A dozen years after the first infections, the serum he created has never worked perfectly, so Chels and those like her might survive for years after infection instead of turning quickly into animals. And no matter how many people they cleared off the streets, factory closings and the realities of the industrial revolution mean there are always more people who end up on the streets, offending the senses of the wealthy elite.

No comments: