Arms Market, Agege
The biggest arms market in Lagos is located in Agege off Awolowa Road. There are a variety of open-air booths covered with tarps or even palm fronds. Inside the booths, or even heaped on tarps and blankets on the ground in front of them, is a sight that would make the hardest street sam cry. Guns, ammo, blades, explosives — you name it, you can find it there.
Many of the vendors in the outdoor stalls deal only in small amounts, and what you see is what they have. To get to the real goodies, you’ll want to make your way to the center of the market, where a cluster of bukas and small buildings sit. Inside the buildings, you’ll find even more exotic goodies, weapons that would be blatantly illegal elsewhere in the world. The biowarfare items aren’t generally displayed at all; you’ll have to ask one of the sellers in order to make a deal. The big-time dealers congregate in the bukas, sipping palm wine and waiting for customers.
The sales are remarkably open, which can be surprising to many of us who live in cities with a law enforcement agency (or with laws, for that matter). The kings from the Kingdoms of Nigeria and rulers from a variety of other African nations send their agents to the Dúdú Dúdú Ôjà to shop for their own personal armies. Terrorist organizations mingle openly at the market, with Sons of Sauron reps shopping side by side with Alamos 20K people.
Fights and thefts are rare in the market, for obvious reasons, and only the boldest of pickpockets operate there. It’s one area in Lagos where you don’t have to be concerned about paying the Area Boys bribes or being hassled for being an oyibos. Once you’re in the market, it’s neutral territory.
-- Black Mamba
Older human male archeologist
Pohjois-Venäjän heimoja oleva roteva mies, trimmatut, muhkeat viikset, kalju pää.
Human male operative
Hyvin tummaihoinen afrikkalainen. Pukeutuu Nubialaisiin heimokaapuihin.
Ei muuta tietoa.
Human male corporate
Azlanilainen mies. Huoliteltu korporaattilookki ja pieni, todennäköisesti pysyvän mittainen sänki.
Elf female aristocrat
Punatukkainen, kaunis ja kontrolloitu haltiainen, mahdollisesti Tír na nÓgista.
Human female collector
Kaukaasialainen, hieman yli nelikymppinen brunette. Eurooppalainen aksentti. Palkka-arkeologi.
Take these figures with a barrel of salt, ‘kay?
Population: 20 million, maybe more, maybe less
Area: 3,500 square kilometers, give or take a few hundred more (lagoons cover about 25 percent of the total area)
Currency Exchange Rate:
20 Naira (coinage) to 1 nuyen
Today is Sunday, February 7th
Today’s Weather in Lagos: 34 deg C (daytime high) with heavy sustained winds.
Air quality is low
Apina: 5 nairaa
Kala: 10 nairaa
Virtahepo: 50 nairaa
Papukaija: 100 nairaa
Leijona: 1000 nairaa
Lagos is a feral city on the coast of West Africa. The city itself is home to 10–20 million people, most of whom live in conditions that make the Redmond Barrens look luxurious. Immensely powerful and rich warlords rule the city from the secure enclave of Lagos Island. Corporate investment in the city is high, since it is the primary outlet for the oil pumped in the Niger delta and serves as a no-holds-barred playground for everything from cheap consumer goods to black-market bioweapons. Almost any goods with value can be bought or sold in Lagos, be it weapons, metahumans, or technology. With no police force (or city-wide infrastructure), the rich and powerful write their own rules — and the corporations enjoy having no rules at all.
The city is built around large, shallow lagoons of brackish, polluted water. About a quarter of the sprawl area is actually water, and much of the rest of the city is built on a swamp. During the rainy season, streets become waterways and entire neighborhoods are flooded. Homes built over the swamps and lagoons balance precariously on stilts, while wooden or plastic slats connect homes. In the drier areas of the city, homes are often built of cinderblocks, and multi-story apartment complexes are common in the dense slums. Everywhere, people collect the acidic rainwater on rooftops and in barrels, and many families have rooftopgarden of edible fungi and hardy plants. The water from the lagoon, rivers, and streams is too polluted with toxic chemicals and metahuman waste to be drinkable (in fact, just falling into the water can cause a metahuman to become seriously ill). Less than one percent of the population has access to clean water (or plumbing), and so sterilized bags of water are common at markets and roadside vendors. Shamans with the sterilize spell are such valuable commodities that gangs and neighborhoods have been known to go to war to acquire one.
DID YOU KNOW?
Although VITAS I swept over Africa later than in Asia, Europe, or the Americas, it was even more deadly. The face of the continent was permanently changed as the mortality toll reached close to 75 percent in most areas.
In Lagos funeral pyres burned for over a year without ever going out with corpses as their fuel.
Food is another danger; fish from the lagoons can be toxic, and vegetables and fruit are often washed in polluted water. Food-borne illness is rampant, especially amongst visitors. There are few soy or soy-based products, however, and the spicy cooking features fresh fish, Cassava, rice, and yams. Devil rats (or their less dangerous cousins) are also a staple. In December and February, the strong Harmattan wind blows from the Sahara, bringing a warm, dry period and coating everything in the city with a fine, red dust. There is little to no rain during this time, and drinkable water becomes scarce.
Magic runs through the city, with tribal dibias and olorishas (shamans) holding their societies together or profiting by their powers. Much of the city has a background count, from centuries of metahuman suffering, misery, and overwhelming pollution. Some areas are domains that favor toxic magic, like the dense, polluted slums of Shomolu, while others favor nature magic, such as the wild, untamed grasslands of Ifako-Ijaye. Dangerous Awakened creatures are drawn to the tainted astral space. Local ‘’dibias’’ learn to compensate for the difficulty in drawing mana, but visitors can be caught unaware.
Wireless coverage in the city is provided primarily through a Mesh Network. There are a few areas with reliable wireless coverage (such as Festac Town or Lagos Island). However, since the majority of the population has commlinks (although many are scavenged from corporate recycling programs), a viable mesh network exists. The network is subject to the flows of metahuman traffic, however, and at anytime, coverage could go from strong to non-existent within a few minutes.
DID YOU KNOW?
Lagos Island is the heart of the city’s business district. It’s separated from the mainland by the main canal that connects Lagos Lagoon to the Gulf of Guinea. At one time, there was an entire archipelago of islands decorating the swampy lagoon, di- vided from each other by creeks and waterways. Those waterways were long ago filled in with dry land for building. Now, Lagos Island is connected to Victoria Island and Ikoyi Island, forming one large district.
While many people have commlinks, almost no one has a bank account (or ID). Instead, most of the daily financial transactions are done through barter or physical currency. The naira is the common currency for Lagos, and 20 naira are worth approximately 1 nuyen. Rampant forgery makes the paper naira almost worthless, while coins (in amounts up to 500 naira) are slightly better as long as a person verifies the coin is made from real metal. Better yet are hawala tokens, which are accepted everywhere in the sprawl and are often given a higher value in daily transactions. Hawala tokens generally come in amounts up to 1,000 naira. Most sprawl residents will also accept bartered items in exchange for goods or services.
There are estimates that there are over one hundred different languages spoken in Lagos. Many residents speak a Lagos-specific type of city speak, which combines several tribal languages with English and French. Other major languages are Yoruba and Igbo. While Horizon’s Life-line linguasoft service has Yoruba linguasofts available, there are no linguasofts on the market for the unique Lagosian city speak, Igbo, or any of the other tribal languages. However, between Yoruba, English, and French, most oyibos (foreigners) can make themselves understood, as long as they re member not to speak Yoruba to an Igbo unless they’re spoiling for a fight.