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Life in the Big City

Life in the Big City
Product information
Type Short story
Rulebook fiction
Author Tara Gallagher
Pages 3 (print)
8 (PDF)
Publication information
Publisher FASA
First published 1986
Era Succession Wars era
Timeline 3024 or later

Life in the Big City is a short story by Tara Gallagher that was first published in the 1986 CityTech rulebook. While the story was printed on the rulebook's last pages, there is a brief introductory scene on p. 3 titled A Tale of Two Cities that is arguably connected to or even part of this story; it features Commander Stephen Burrows proposing a toast in Maloof's Tavernto the recent conquest of Pike IV and the soon-to-be-historic Battle for Weehawken.

On 28 August 2006 Life in the Big City, minus the A Tale of Two Cities scene, was made available for download as an individual PDF product via BattleCorps.

Teaser text (BattleCorps re-release)Edit

Generally, only MechWarriors are welcome in Maloof's. Technicians or infantry or support personnel spend their time elsewhere, so when a MechWarrior invites one to drink at Maloof's it is a mark of high respect. At the same time, they're somewhat conspicuous; so when they start telling a tale of life in the big city, others will listen...

Plot summaryEdit

At Maloof's Tavern on Rahway II, a Federated Suns world reserved almost exclusively for MechWarrior R&R, Frank Krieger and Abbey Farber, known as "possibly the best technicians around" and called "two of the best Techs in the Inner Sphere", join the MechWarriors of the Burrow's Crashing Thunder mercenary regiment in celebration of their victory over House Kurita forces at Weehawken on Travis V. They draw glaring stares from fellow MechWarrior Williams, prompting another MechWarrior to narrate how they scrounged up spare parts for improvised repairs to his 'Mech (and others) on Torwind, resulting in 'Mechs with product advertisements on them from the truck trailers that were used to patch up the improvised armor. Williams' 'Mech had the line "Processed Chicken" running along both legs and the right torso.
Later they talk about Locust pilots and how all MechWarriors–including Locust pilots–consider them to be the weirdest.

At another table nearby, MechWarriors from Kushnir's Battalion of the 42nd Armored Lightning Regiment mourn for John Judd, whose Phoenix Hawk was destroyed by an enemy BattleMaster who cornered it in a city on Pike IV with its jump jets out.

At yet another table, an aging battalion commander is turning his 'Mech over to his niece, and cautions her against fighting recklessly or underestimating infantry, lest she end up dispossessed.

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  • No timestamp is provided for the story. However, given that CityTech, published in 1986, is a very early BattleTech product and that the concept of lostech plays a prominent role, the story can be assumed to be set during the Succession Wars era, in or around the "classic" year 3025. The victory on Travis V that is celebrated by the MechWarriors took place in the summer of 3024 according to Technical Readout: 3025 (Stalker entry).
  • In the German edition of CityTech, this story was replaced by a translation of the story Black Cats Cross Your Path by Tara Gallagher and James Lanigan.


  • CityTech rulebook, pp. 40-42, with additional scene titled "A Tale of Two Cities" on p. 3