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In a hardboiled dystopian future, one major American city has been divided in two. Separated by much more than a river, one side is an unfinished technological marvel populated by mega-skyscrapers where the wealthy live, work, and play. The other is a forsaken wasteland where order is strictly maintained by a rogue group of cleric soldiers known as the street preachers. But this dichotomy is about to change. Slowly, quietly, clandestine forces are working to undermine the small piece of redemption the street preachers have brought to their concrete flocks. In the face of watching their second chance crumble to dust, some will fight to stop it. Others will kill to make it happen.

A bold experiment in podcast fiction, The Failed Cities Monologues are told from the shifting perspectives of the characters who inhabit this world, twisted noir archetypes and cyberpunk warriors. Their lives and their stories are linked together by conspiracy, fate... and blood.

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  • Two cities separated by 16 miles of river. One side has been written off, zeroed out by its elected caretakers. Now men with white collars and nighted sticks patrol the streets. They're peacekeepers, following a new gospel, the Steel Gospel. Ethan is one of them; part clergy, part lawman, part soldier. A shepherd in a concrete pasture, watching over hophead flocks by night. He's also a believer. Ethan knows that nobility and justice are the cross and shield of the street preacher. But power corrupts, and in a city that has downsized police and politicians the street preacher's power is 100 proof...

  • Within social circles linked by blood The Feral Twins are more than assassins, they're celebrities. A predator pack of two that bring animal spectacle to murder, they have no past, just question marks that hang like sharpened sickles above their heads. Ferus is silent death, his sister's single-minded enforcer. But there's the voice of a young boy in his head that tells a very different story...

  • Walk the streets between the Stacks with Sterne, a pit fighter that splits his nights between brawling for cash and spinning tales of old school tough guys and detectives. The Stacks is considered nothing more than a neo hippie ghetto. But to the folks that live here, the eve trippers and broken artists and freaked out Rastafarians, it's a dreamland. And Sterne has his tiny crumbling place in it, filled with obsession, imagination, and some fresh wounds waiting to scar...

  • The news webs call him The Conductor. He's responsible for the disappearances of at least thirty young women, all prostitutes. Their bodies are never found. And oh, yes, you're about to discover why...

  • Fera, alpha female of The Feral Twins. Death lives inside her, and it's a reality she shares with all those she meets, whether they want its secrets or not. But is Fera a predator...or just the ultimate survivor?

  • Constable Valeri Klimenko, whose father and grandfather were both Heroes of Ukraine, never had any intention of living up to his family's legacy. Now he's been made a detective and forced onto the trail of the most feared and talked about serial killer in the city's history. If it weren't for that damned Reuben sandwich...

  • In the Failed Cities, being beautiful can make you a victim. Being beautiful and smart can make you dangerous. d'Anger has a flawless form, a Botticelli face...and an IQ of 175...

  • When fevered streets reach their boiling point, you bring in a mediator. When it's looking like back alley war, you need a maven. Tonight was already going to be his toughest mediation yet. Then his throat got put on the bargaining table...

  • If you're new to the Failed Cities, there's only one place to go if you want to be in the know, and it's not some digital Orwellian info-matrix. It's a tiny tarot den in the shadiest part of town. Psychic Sally is a palm-reader with a third eye on all the action, and for a fiver she'll give you a glimpse into what's happened so far on both sides of the river...

  • Reverend Ethan is a man who likes to keep things simple: a collar, a street to keep, a stick to keep them with. But tonight, with war looming just around a battered brick corner, things are about to get complicated. A missing mediator, a fallen street preacher left as a message, a mysterious lady of quality bearing a warning and a gift. And that's just the beginning...

  • Boredom's a dangerous thing when you're one of The Feral Twins, and not even arson, kidnapping, and back alley crucifixions can relieve it. Ferus just wants one worthy opponent before the night is through. He's forgotten what the Chinese say about what you wish for...

  • Jump into the story with Sterne. He's about to live one of his own pulp adventures, but unlike Curly, his fearless juggernaut alter ego, Sterne is going to find out that the real bad guys don't wear hats. And his instructors for the evening? The Feral Twins . . .

  • Truck lives for the action, for life on the edge of a blade. But when a routine pick-up goes a hundred miles south of wrong, that pace comes to a crashing halt...

  • Fera and her brother have murdered, maimed, and massacred on every continent across the globe, but it's the hard, ugly lessons she learned as a girl that command Fera's pathology. When her intended victim for the night is snatched away by a resourceful pit fighter, it sparks a recall that can only lead to blood.

  • A new detective's shield, an old suit, and a lethal case no one else wants. It's not the way Valeri Klimenko, the former constable, wants to start out his night. But they may have all underestimated this simple young man from the Ukraine, who's been pushed just about as far as he's willing to go by the powers that be.

  • Interlude or prelude. When it's a romantic encounter with d'Anger you can never be sure which you're caught up in. Learning about her past, however, you might know which to expect . . .

  • What do you do when your life and your livelihood both depend on words and your voice has been locked away inside your own head? For The Maven, the answer to that question lies inward. And the only thing worse than searching for it is finding out what's waiting when he finally opens his eyes . . .

  • You're not the only one invested in the story of The Failed Cities. The Nicodemus Consortium is very interested in what's been happening on both sides of the river, and one of their best operatives is about to give them a full report. Be warned that the Consortium protects their secrecy with a vengeance. Eavesdrop at your own risk . . .

  • There's no chapter in the Steel Gospel on the apocalypse, but that's exactly what the street preachers are facing tonight: Their own personal end of times. As blood and fire threaten to engulf Ethan, his brethren, and their city, the question isn't whether or not they'll survive to see the dawn, but whether or not the dawn will come at all.

  • Sometimes things go wrong. Sometimes dead wrong. But for the first time in their storied and bloody careers, Ferus is the one making decisions for The Feral Twins. His strength has always been their deadliest weapon, but only when guided by his sister's hand. Tonight, if they're going to get out alive, Ferus will have to find a new strength...

  • Tonight, as street preachers poise for war, Rastafarian soldiers pray for battle, and The Stacks prepare for Judgment Day, Sterne is just trying to write the end of his novel before The Feral Twins write the end on him. And it's anybody's guess who'll get the last word . . .

  • Tonight's the night. Truck's sharpening his blade to a razor edge, and a chance meeting with the reluctant Detective Klimenko has provided the set-up for him to carve out the revenge he's been chasing after at a 100 miles an hour . . .

  • Fera's past is written in her own scarred flesh. Tonight, watching her lifeblood run slowly into the gutters of the Failed Cities, hear that history recounted by Fera's own mind as she battles the one enemy that has threatened her for so long like no other: Death . . .

  • What's the difference between being heroism and self-preservation? Just ask Valeri Klimenko. While the whole city celebrates him as the man who caught notorious serial killer The Conductor, the constable-turned-detective sits in his darkened apartment with a glass of scotch, taking solace only in the fact that he's lived through the week with a few scars and a few more nightmares...

  • A good hustler knows when to get out of town. A good con woman leaves on their own terms. And a femme fatale does it in style...

  • For street mediators and their watchers, life and death lives in a shot glass placed over a smashed steel slug. Only one among their ranks can wrap up the story of the Failed Cities. The Maven is about to have the last word, and if you've come this far, you owe it to yourself to listen...

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