The brass swallow was found in the ruins of London in 2090 during an archeological excavation in an area formerly known as Peckham.
Worn under the cloak, the swallow was a symbol of The Shadow People.
The Shadow People created the brass tokens in the shape of the long extinct migratory bird as a symbol of their own forced migration from the Southern Hemisphere to the North, the effects of climate change having made their homeland uninhabitable.
The Shadow People existed as an underground post-anarchist grouping trying to exist in a world of oppressive State power. As immigrants within a hostile host community, and with few legal rights, the swallow token was a ‘pass’ – a symbol to show to others in this underground network. It was recognized as a mechanism to aid community and cultural identity and was banned in 2061 by the state. It is not known whether the remnants of The Shadow People still exist and whether the swallow symbol is still used.