The Bazaar

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The Bazaar is the main attraction on the Belt, in the 12Fold Resorts.


The entry tunnel opens up on a bright, noisy expanse. Accretion has built a bazaar around the central forum of a wall-less laboratory space. At the core are a clump of long black-topped lab tables and a couple of padded surgical tables with free-standing shelves in a half-circle around them. It started growing after one of the tables was converted into a lunch space: the original group opted for a full-time chef, who installed his yurt just a couple of yards away. The chef's friends brought their friends, and a shamanic circle moved in by the yurt as tents, lean-tos, and a battered Airstream trailer found their way to the expanse. The scientists' friends, in their turn, brought generators, crystalline arrays, and geodesic domes to a nearby stretch of ground. Once enough of them settled, the peptide merchants showed up, followed by other bio-entrepreneurs. The whole place is a constant friendly argument between the residents, fought in words, bodies, and architecture.

The central area is small, though, and the bazaar fills it messily. The argument echoes back upon itself through the expanse, often looping through a tunnel or two. The results are shown in the menagerie of local bodies: alternative locomotions, vocalizations not yet out of beta, and one-shot modes of cognition, digestion, and reproduction abound. The constant hustle of the different types moving around, improving upon previous work, tinkering with current forms, and always, always striving towards brand new things, leaves various substances splattered on any surface that hasn't been wiped in the last hour, as well as tiny prototypes everywhere. Trying to navigate without becoming part of the super-experiment that is the bazaar would require a sturdy hazmat suit and more patience than sense or tact.

There are other tunnels in downwards in the expanse, a maze of twisty little passages that lead away from the well-lit ones. Various groups are constantly taking expeditions down into them, some returning with or as new forms to analyze. If you want to explore down them yourself, bring your own light source and have an offsite copy of your genome taken (a service that each of the three vendors providing it will strenuously warn you to trust no one else with). You'll have company down in those tunnels, even if you walked in alone.


Transformation, overproduction, supernumerary body parts, weird physiology, oviposition, breederplay, alteration of bodily fluids, innovative uses for bodily fluids, shrinkage, growth, contagion, parasites, mutation, open-source genome hacking, chromosome haggling, and control-via-bodysculpting.