The series is set in a fictionalized version of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, and the series starts in-universe on February 20, 2011. The series begins with protagonist Hunter Hastings returning to Druid City. Hunter reveals in a confrontation with former friend Jack Thorn that he’s arrived because he’s avoiding some sort of circumstance in Austin, Texas, where he was attending grad school. Unwilling to reveal the details of his plight, and equally unwilling to submit to staying with his parents, Hunter settles in at his brother Mike’s dormitory for a couple of weeks while pooling his efforts into investigating an assault on campus. By the end of Volume 1, Hunter is living with a local and ready to investigate and interview all number of subjects to get ahead.