The Concentric

map detail of Pest showing The Concentric

The Concentric gets its name from three nested arcs of shallow pools that sit in the middle of the former District VIII.  Testing with barium—one of the few detectable substances to survive undisassembled long enough to perform a test—shows the pools are part of the network of tunnels from kisses to Soft Lands, but that their connections go deep enough for the city around them to be hard land. They remind us the Soft Lands and the Kisses are polite fictions; all the land of Pest is potentially soft, and nothing but history and our guess at robot math guarantees that the tunnels that tunnels won’t open up in what we hope is hard land.

Still, the area is stable, though the old buildings, abandoned by their former wealthy occupants, were looted then ruined then replaced by tall parabolic domes and filament towers. The area has seen ongoing new construction for the past decade, almost all residential, moving south and east to meet the smugglers’ warehouses at the ever-growing Kerepesi Street Market, which has wares and assayers but more and more food stalls. This is one of the few sightseeing locations that, during daytime, rich tourists seeking Hands for status will venture into, for its relative safety and the sight of the szálbots constantly flying into and out of their central station, a former sports arena close to the center of the Concentric. The tourists are rarely mugged, but Kerepesi Street has skilled cutpurses. 

In Dömötör’s Tale, the Lover Dömötör lives in the northern point of the Concentric, across the tip of the Great Inlet from Városliget.