The REALLY Wild Wasteland. (The Fallout RP!)

 Pages PREV 1 . . . 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 NEXT
 

Just outside Vault 122

Grendel put the photo away, and sheathed his weapons before grunting appreciatively at the Runners for their information, and started heading north towards the biggest landmark he could see for miles.

Grendel wasn't exactly sprinting or even running, but he kept up a good pace that would be difficult for most to keep up with, but then he noticed someone following him. Without so much as a sound, Grendel drew one of his knives and hurled it at the figure approaching from behind as he charged the stranger with the other.

Kristin Blamco & Lucy Black || Megaton Gates
"Leftover poison"

Lucy Black was well aqcuianted with Sylph's mannerisms, so while Sylph's muscles tensed and the smallest gleam of a partially unsheathed blade welcomed Lucy's eye, she had little to no qualms with Sylph taking her life. Residual guilt from Lucy's abandonment weighed heavily on her mind, the effect was compounded when Lucy realised that this was the most time they had relatively spent alone. Sylph's puzzling tears came as a shock, one that Lucy didn't really know how to respond to. Still, she silently urged her sister-in-name-only to draw her weapon. It would only take one swing.

Wordlessly, Sylph walked past her, presumably towards the gates. After everything, their odd relationship had seemingly vanished, almost as if someone hit the reset button. What happened to Sylph?

Lucy had two emotional responses in mind, firstly to allow herself to sink into a silent state of depression or secondly to lash out in frustration. She had chosen the latter. The target for said lashing was picked when she approached the BlamCo Princess who was busy packing her bag. Stopping just short of Kristin's portable microwave, Lucy crossed her arms and harshly addressed the busy woman.

Silently, the Haughty Princess walked ahead of Lucy, passing the group without a moment's hesitation and quickly exited Megaton after not having immediately spotted Jonathan by the gates.

Stopping just short of Megaton's gates, Lucy stopped by Thomas & Arizona. Clearly in a bad mood from Kristin's surprising conversation reversal.
"You guys can stop at my former house in Springvale -- unless you want to keep moving. It's up to Arizona. I have to find out what Jonathan wants with me now. I won't be long. Let me know?"

A minute later after checking her bag, Lucy exited Megaton and turned to find Jonathan & Kristin nearby. In between a bad mood and shell-shocked trauma. Lucy flitted between an air of frustration and a disconnected expression of shaken trauma.

She was in no condition to be doing this. Running a hand through her hair and tightening her grip at the back of her head, Lucy sighed and closed her eye, raspily addressing Jonathan.

"You...wanted to talk to me?"


Kristin Blamco || Outside Megaton Gates
A minute or two before Lucy's arrival

Having found Jonathan, the Injured Princess increased the pacing of her steps. After her entanglement with Lucy, an exchange that would make her younger sister proud, Kristin's mood was only slightly dampened. The electrical excitement from the duel with the Crimson Huntress was still fresh on her mind and clearly visible to anyone who got a good look at her body. Despite having a fairly high threshold for pain, Kristin's felt fatigued and her body ached, seemingly begging for rest & recovery.

Reaching Jonathan, it was clear that the man had been crying. This confused her. They were alive, he should be ecstatic! Unless he was so happy that he brought to the verge of tears? Most likely. Still, she needed to show her support.

"Jonathan! My Pugilist!", Kristin gleefully exclaimed, locking him into an unexpected hug, "Ahh, I am so very happy to see you here - standing no less!"

Breaking off slightly, Kristin was still pressed against Jonathan while rooting through her schoolbag with one hand. "I believe I still have that first-aid kit in here somewhere. We look -- ", eyes darting upwards, her face cracked into a wider grin. " -- absolutely terrible! Ahh, scars, the tattoos of battle."

The dull ache from the vicious bladed slash on her upper arm had finally hit the BlamCo Princess, forcing her to reluctantly grimace for a few moments before resuming a stiff smile. "I may need your help.", the Proud Princess turned her arm towards Jonathan, drawing attention to the open wound just below her armor. An uncharacteristically fatigued chuckle was uttered.

A voice, not far off, had piped up. Presumably after trying to find a gap in Kristin's loud conversation.

"You...wanted to talk to me?"

Oh, her.


The Dunwich Party
The Wild Wastelands | The Road to Dunwich | Outside Megaton Gates
"There's no pep-talk like a Ghoul's pep-talk."

After she gave Thomas her two caps on the whole situation between him and Lucy, he seemed to take a moment to think about it. But the way he spoke after didn't do anything to make her feel better about the whole thing. Still, it wasn't really her business. Perhaps after a century and change of keeping her nonexistent nose out of messes like this, she decided maybe it was time she tried it again, she thought as she shook her head.

When she looked over at Sylph, however, she noticed the Blue-Haired Monster's cheeks had tears running down them, and she had to do a double take. It was unexpected to see her cry, especially here and now. She would've thought if there was a time for her to cry, it would've been while she told her life story. So when Thomas called out to her and she made her way over, the Old Ghoul couldn't help but reach over and place a firm hand on Sylph's shoulder.

"Hey, Kiddo. You alright?" she asked with a note of concern in her tone.

The Blue Haired Menace to Society shrugged off the concern. Clearly not ready to talk about it quite yet and instead held out her hand. The words, "Choker" could be heard quietly.

The Undertaker turned Father shook his head.

"No. Answer her question, Sylph. She's concerned for you." Thomas added his two cents into the conversation. It seemed harsh but sometimes people needed a push in the right direction rather than allowing them to hide themselves.

"I don't know." Sylph answered after a time, responding to Arizona's question, "That... lady... she... makes me feel..."

Her words trailed off. Thomas nodded. He understood. If he were a son of a bitch, one could have said that he understood and could relate to the feeling that Sylph had. Were he a son of a bitch, he would have understood the sensation of abandonment... of course, he wasn't one of those. He had encouraged Lucy to leave the Enclave Vault without him. He'd actually given her no say in the matter and taken it upon himself to make the decision for her. But he still... in his darker moments could have possibly understood the feelings that Sylph was going through.

This sensation combined with Sylph's apparent loss of her memories made things rather strange.

"Lucy? Oh..." Arizona murmured, trailing off as she glanced over at Lucy Black herself.

As it was, she was arguing with Boobs McHugeTits. And it looked like, whatever they were talking about, Lucy wasn't exactly holding her own with her words. After a moment, Arizona nodded, then pulled off the bandana wrapped around her forearm and offered it as a handkerchief.

"Here. That girl over there is Lucy Black. When we spoke, she told me that you two have met before. Used to be close. Beyond that, you'll have to talk to her." Arizona said vaguely, before firmly adding, "And I do mean talk, not threaten, or try to hurt, maim or kill."

Patting the girls shoulder, she sighed heavily, "And like I was telling Thomas here, we're going to have plenty of time to talk on the way to Dunwich."

Thomas grinned absently at the thought of time with Lucy, Sylph giving him a rather curious look. Having not been in on the information as to what happened between Lucy and her Father, she wasn't sure how to take that rather stupid expression on her Father's face.

"Is he alright, Miss Arizona?" The Crimson Calamity asked quietly.

Looking over at Thomas, Arizona couldn't help but chuckle and cross her arms. Lucy really was a lucky bitch as far as she was concerned.

"Oh, he's perfectly fine. In fact, I get the feeling that he couldn't be better, eh, Shifty?" she asked with a sly grin.

The Former Undertaker blinked for a moment, his cheeks turning 50 shades of red as he realized that he'd just been daydreaming about... something. He scratched the back of his head before he responded.

"Yes. I... am... quite good." Thomas responded quickly as he attempted to pull himself back together.

It was clear that the mood had lightened a bit at the expense of Thomas "Shifty" McGee's pride. But still, Sylph was feeling tired emotionally, mentally, phyisically... she needed rest.

"Can... can I please have my choker back?" She asked Miss Arizona.

Thomas sighed. As much as he disliked Sylph's wanton violence... there was something predictable about that... as opposed to Sylphee.

Eyebrow raised, Arizona merely nodded and went, "Uh-huh... Right."

Then she turned at Sylph and leveled a look at her for a moment before she nodded again and reached into her pack, pulling out the choker and handing it over.

"Here you go, Kiddo." she said quietly.


[ dr. sorenson ]
The Wild Wastelands | Following the Post-Apocalypse | Springvale School
"This week, on Cooking, Wasteland Style!..."

Immediately after her little declaration about cooking, Jenna could see that the young, blind Constance was peering up at her with curiosity, and her mechanical cat ears were turned to scan her too. It was enough to make her feel a little concerned about the prospect of pitching in, especially since she was likely going to be cooking for at least ten.

"We'd love the help. Not a one of these Sylphys can cook. They even burned the BlamCo Mac n Cheese boxes that were airdropped here a few days ago. How do you even do that?"

That answered why Constance had seemed curious. The fact that none of the clones could cook wasn't entirely surprising, but burning BlamCo Mac 'n Cheese? That was a step beyond simply being unable to cook as far as Jenna was concerned, and she reflexively reached over to her Pip-Boy and had it project a red, cartoon grimace over her helmet.

"Well, uh... I'm sure we can come up with something." she said with wavering confidence.

When they reached the ground level and walked into what had to be a cafeteria, the Doctor stopped in her tracks as she saw a few of the Sylphys cleaning and butchering an adult Deathclaw. Even a lone Deathclaw in the wastes was dangerous, and in some cases were worse than the Cazadores that were a plague in the West. The fact that these Sylphys had taken one down without a single Anti-Materiel Rifle, Gauss Rifle, or heavy weapon in sight... It was both impressive, and scary.

One of them promptly took the Deathclaw's head once it was cut off and manipulated it like a hand puppet as she gabbled, making the others laugh raucously. Jenna, meanwhile, merely shook her head.

"They never get tired of that joke."

As soon as they noticed Constance was they, they dropped everything they were doing and saluted. Waving, Jenna had her Expression Generator project another friendly smile over her helmet.

"I hope you're right about cooking and chemistry. I think all I've had it Death Claw jerky for the past couple of days."

Glancing over at Constance, she couldn't help but wonder just what she was going to do about dinner when she spied what had to have been the kitchen at one point. And a kitchen had ovens, gas lines, and pilot lights, all waiting to be jury rigged into potential greatness. With a that in mind, she rolled her shoulders.

"Don't worry. I have a plan, and luckily we won't have to deal with leftovers." she said, before moving past and making her way into the kitchen.

* * *

It was a minor miracle that the pilot lights and a few of the ovens still worked, if not as well as they would have before the war. But that was enough for her to get started on cooking. With some creative use of a medical thermometer to check how well done the meat was, and using the components of a few rations from her own pack, she had several Smothered Deathclaw Steaks steadily cooking away. All in all, she was rather proud of the setup, and she was pretty confident everyone was going to get fed, something she was a little worried about.

As it turned out, the Deathclaw they had managed to take down had some decent meat on it, and while she had used up all of her rations... Well, there were worse reasons for it, and she was confident she was close enough to a bastion of Wasteland Civilization that she'd be able to get more food as needed.

Turning to Constance, she nodded and placed her hands on her hips.

"Sorry about the amount of prep time I had to take, but it shouldn't be too long now." she said happily.

The Wild Wastelands | Megaton | The Gates
Enter the Sylphee
Thomas "Shifty" McGee and Sylph(ee)

Click

The Friendly Former Undertaker braced himself. He understood what was coming his way. In weather terms, Hurricane Sylphee was about to make landfall over a densely populated area and it would unleash destruction the likes of which had not been seen since the bombs fell. Observing the Blue Menace, Thomas watched her eyes open. Despite the underlying cruelty of how she'd been forged by Henry, the change never ceased to amaze the Tall and Pale Father figure. From the way the girl stood, her expressions, her mannerisms, even the way light reflected from her eyes, Sylphee was a completely different person from Sylph despite sharing the same body.

With pinpoint accuracy, the Hurricane of Happiness hurled herself at her Father, wrapping her slender yet deceptively strong arms around the neck of her Father figure, almost pulling him off balance.

"DADDY!" Sylphee squealed directly into Thomas' ear hole, attempting to blast the contents of his skull out the other ear.

"Ow ow ow." Thomas' back and skull complained as his knees buckled and he fell to the ground, Sylphee landing on his chest while the back of Thomas' skull found the hard packed dirt.

THUD!

Clearly, Sylphee was back.

Looking around, the Menace to Anything and Everything spotted Missy Arizona Not Old One Not Leather Faced Lady Not Ghoul Whore With The Gun. Before Missy Arizona Not Old One Not Leather Faced Lady Not Ghoul Whore With The Gun had a chance to brace herself, the Devil with Blue Hair had launched herself into the air, her arms stretched out, her finger wiggling in anticipation of a hugging Missy Arizona Not Old One Not Leather Faced Lady Not Ghoul Whore With The Gun to an almost literal death.

She might have gotten away with it if it wasn't for a skillful dodge that sent Sylphee flying over the crouched Arizona.

THUD! ... THUD! .. THUD! . THUD!THUD!THUD! Went Sylphee's body as she came to a tumbling stop before launching herself again.

"HEY Missy Arizona Not Old One Not Leather Faced Lady Not Ghoul Whore With The Gun! ATTACK HUG!!!" The Blue Haired Banshee screeched as she flung herself into the air once again.

Thomas would have found the whole incident rather amusing were it not for the pair of hands that hauled him up on his feet, directly into the path of the incoming Blue Eyed Projectile.

"You b-" Thomas started to curse uncharacteristically at the Ghoul who'd used him as a human shield.

"Sorry Thomas, but better you than me." Arizona stated with a note of amusement in her voice, clearly proud of herself.

CRASH!

The impact of the Sylphee-Styled-Attack hug launched both the Crimson Menace and her Dapperly Clad Father figure through the gates and into the Wastelands.

THUD

More stars, more aches, more whiplash. With the exception of the time spent with Lucy, clearly this was not the day to be Thomas. Waiting for the all too familiar stars to stop orbiting around his skull, a trio of figures came into focus. Kristin, Jonathan and Lucy.

Thomas noted the rather hostile look on Kristin's face as she attempted to activate some sort of Blamco Branded Invisible Laser Attack on Lucy. He'd caught a small snippet of the earlier exchange between the two women and it seemed that none of the hostility between the two had dissipated in the last two minutes.

"Who're those Ladies with Mister Hollow Bongo Head?" Sylphee asked in a quiet voice, or what passed for quiet for Sylphee, meaning it was still audible to the trio.

"The one in the white leather armor is Kristin... Mister... uh... Hollow Bongo Head's friend and the other is Lucy." Thomas said, his voice softening at the mention of Lucy's name.

"Is she my Mommy?"

"I... uh... well.. maybe? It's a little too soon for that." The Former Undertaker turned Crimson Faced Sputtering Idiot sputtered in a manner that would have caused him to fountain milk out his nose were he drinking milk.

"So... Missy Krissy Boobs-A-Bunch and Missy Mommy Lucy Caboosy?" Sylphee said in awe of Missy Mommy Lucy Caboosy's mommy status.

"N...no!" Thomas started, attempted, failed to correct, noting with slight dismay that Lucy had started talking with Jonathan. Despite reassurances, The Green Eyed Former Undertaker couldn't wait to be rid of the former Enclave Inventor.


The Wild Wastelands | Springvale | Springvale Elementary School
Death Claw for Cutie
Constance Sorrowfeld

GRUUUUUUUUUUUUUMBLE

One of the many noises that came from the stomach of one Constance Sorrowfeld, who was currently attempting to look rather calm or risk slipping in a puddle of her own drool. While food preparation had taken time, it smelled like it was going to be worth all the extra effort that had been put in.

True to her word, Miss Jenna was putting together a splendid meal. Constance watched her drift from one station to another, cutting this, whisking that, basting this and sauteing that. It was a rather magnificent ballet to behold.

"Sorry about the amount of prep time I had to take, but it shouldn't be too long now." Miss Jenna said happily.

Constance abruptly shook her head.

"No. It's quite alright, Miss Jenna." The American Enclave Scout of America responded, "It smells absolutely divine. I think the waiting part, while taxing, is going to make it all the more delicious."

Not that the girl had anything to compare it with since she'd been served a never ending line of burnt chunks of protein over the last few days. It was to the point that even uncooked Mirelurk Roe might have well been Beluga Caviar imported from Pre-War Russia, not that Constance had any experience with that icky fishy fish egg stuff.

"Sylphy Sylphy!" One of the Sylphy Girls grumbled in a rather hostile fashion. The girl's uniform was stained with a copious amount of blood. From the blood spatter pattern, Jenna could tell that this was the clone that was responsible for cooking until the position had been usurped.

"It's quite alright. I'm sure Miss Jenna doesn't need your help. You should just relax." Constance responded kindly, though there was obvious relief in her voice.

"Sylphy!" The Cook responded as she leaned up against a pipe, against a valve that controlled the flow of natural gas into the oven.

FWOOOOSH!!!

Smell that? Is something on fire? Is dinner done? Oh... looks like it's going to be extra extra done in a few seconds.

The Four Musketeers: Ridin' through this (dead) world."

Like vengeful Valkyries storming across the Wasteland at great speed, our valiant heroes rode roaring horses of steel. Nothing could stop them, for they had purpose in their hearts and fire in their eyes!

Alright, that's actually a load of rubbish. You try staying at top speed when the roads are cracked, broken, and littered with pre-war wrecks.

Still, our riders were making some fine progress as they sped towards Springvale. Isaac had judged the selection of dresses at the clothes shop to be unsuitable for his needs, and the former Fallout sector member was now kitted out in combat armour.

The quartet had crossed the Potomac and were roaring past the Super-Duper Mart at this point, confident they had cleared the worst of the obstacles and debris.

"Whew, am I glad to see the back of that place." Said Evan, flinging his arm back to indicate Washington DC and nearly catching William in the face as he did so.

"Mind my head!" Came the response from the aforementioned passenger, "I thought you liked DC, it's got everything a Brotherhood Scribe could want." Continued William.

"DC's alright, but I hate getting in and out on this thing, all the main roads are jammed up with wrecked cars."

"I suppose when the bombs fell people tried to get out of the city, not that it did them much good."

That particular conversation died quicker than a mole rat in a blender, leaving an awkward silence hanging over things. Unfortunately, Dudley Sullivan took this as the perfect opportunity to say something.

"You stickin' with that get up Isaac?" Asked Dudley, prompting a mental facepalm from both William and Evan, "Cause' ya know you look pretty generic in that stuff. Gotta get ya 'iconic look' figured out."

"Duds don't..." William protested half-heartedly.

"See, ya be ex-Enclave, so that's somethin' ta play on. Can't be goin' for their Power Armour, that's too generic and old you. But ya could get scraps of it to make up yer new look. A shoulder plate here, a gauntlet there, a couple o' the lower leg bits. Stuff that shows a connection to the Enclave, but screams 'badass who moved on' kinda thing." Continued Dudley as innocent as ever.

Maybe Isaac was smart enough not to become the latest subject of Dudley's Wasteland Fashion Show.

Isaac had remained mostly quiet, generally trying to will himself home faster to see if his daughter was there, safe and sound, or at least sound. Unfortunately, there was a disturbance in the force...and by that, we mean Dudley. Was he...egging him on about his former profession? He wasn't having this. The Brotherhood of Steel trusted him, for crying out loud!

Isaac: Dudley, I was just brought back from the dead. I don't give a damn about how I look. I would show up there at home wearing nothing but a smile as long as my little girl is okay, so give it a rest.

"Dudley, stop trying to make everyone wear some unique outfit. This isn't a game, lives are at stake." Said Evan curtly, he was annoyed Dudley had ruined an upcoming moment as they reached the crest of a hill and the grim shape of Megaton came into view.

"Megaton!"

"Megaton!"

"It's only a model..."

"What?"

"Nothing. I said it's not long until we get to Springvale now, this part of the ride is clear and easy."

The Musketeers accelerated with the anticipation of a journey nearly over. After all these years, Isaac was so close to reaching his daughter. Wasn't he?

Ah, but alas, he was unaware of the fact that Lucy... Well, that ALOT of things about Lucy, but most important was the fact that Lucy Black was at the gates of Megaton, and they were too far away to see that.

Isaac: C'mon, hurry up...

The rising husk of metal that was Megaton loomed ever closer and closer, the road they were on took them past the mighty town and brought them back down into Springvale.

Nobody spoke now, the journey was in the final sprint to the finish line. Both bikes wound their way through the streets and twisted wreckage of former houses until they got to the rebuild Black residence.

William spoke softly as the engines quietened, "This is it Isaac, you're home."

It was in better condition than Isaac expected it to be. Still looked like it had been through some bad times, but- Isaac quickly leapt off of the bike and ran for the house. He didn't bust open the door, because boobytraps could always happen, so he eased it open and saw no shotgun or grenade. Then, he opened it wide.

Isaac: "Lucy!"

He began to move when he didn't hear a reply, calling out her name as he made a circuit of the house. No Lucy, but he DID find a bashed Enclave helmet, dried blood, and a no-

"GOD DAMMIT!!"

CRASH!!

Well, we were about to say 'note on the table', but that table had just been demoted to kindling with one fine smash of his first. THEN, he noticed the message that had been left for Constance. He walked out and asked the guys...

Isaac: What the hell is this about a clone army?

"I'm going to chalk that one up to 'weird shit that happens when I'm not around'. There's a lot of weird shit that happens when I'm around so there must be some weird shit going on everywhere else." Said William who began to ponder the logistics of a clone army in the Capital Wasteland, "A clone army would need cloning technology, obviously, and I do know one place in the Capital Wasteland that has that technology. Vault 108."

Evan looked worried, as he knew what that meant. Dudley looked confused, having never been to Vault 108 or even heard of it.

"That's bad. That's very bad." Said Evan, picturing an army of Gary clones flooding the Wasteland, "An army of psychopathic Vault Dwellers... or have they found a new template?"

William remembered once coming across a clone of Sylph. Had she been taken to Vault 108 and used as the template of a clone army? He should never have abandoned her, like he abandoned everyone else.

"Something tells me that's a problem that's going to need solving down the line, maybe by a group of daring adventurers." Said William, resigning himself to the possibility that saving the world from a mad clone army would probably only be the second or third craziest thing he'd have done this week.

Right now the priority was for Isaac to find Lucy, or tables across the wasteland would exist in a permanent state of fear. Oddly enough it was Dudley who a good idea on that front.

"If yer daughter ain't here, maybe someone in Megaton knows where she is. If she came here then decided ta make a trip somewhere she'd probably go into town fer supplies first."

Good idea Dudley, I'm sure someone in Megaton will have seen Lucy Black recently if you ask around enough.

Isaac: "Then, let's go there."

Earth's Orbit | Reconnaissance Vessel A-23

The scouting ship from the Sontaran Empire hovered several thousand miles above the planets service, idling in orbit. Round and silver it bore a striking resemblance to a floating dinner plate. Through the round portholes installed on the side, two creatures could be seen dressed in military style uniforms. Standing at around 3 feet high the creatures looked uncannily similar to baked potatoes with tiny eyes and ears.

"Corporal Staal! Stop playing with that creature and get over here!" one of them yelled at the other. "We need to prepare to return to the mothership... what the hell have you dressed it up as?"

The second creature turned away from the unconscious form of the one and only Charlie Cannon, who was clad in nothing but a loincloth and a frilly pink bonnet.

"It's one of the samples we collected from the planet Lieutenant, I think it makes him look cute!" the one referred to as Staal protested, walking over to his comrade. "I want him to look pretty for when we arrive."

The Lieutenant sighed and backhanded Staal across the face. "For the last time he's not your pet, he's a test subject! We need to determine the viability of this planet's occupants for warfare and labour!"

Staal cringed and rubbed his face. "I know sir but he's just so adorable, I couldn't help myself."

"You disgust me." The lieutenant said, turning to the ship's console. "Sit down and let's get ready to launch."

Before Staal had a chance to follow the order, the ship rocked under a tremendous impact! Alarms began blaring and air rushed through the cockpit out through a newly formed breach in the hull.

"Shit! Get to the escape pods Corporal, we gotta go!" the Lieutenant cried. The two potato men raced to the pods, the first ejecting immediately while the second delayed slightly to attend to their guest...


Courtesy of FalloutJack:

Meanwhile, out in space...

More specifically, Look to La Luna. Thine moon. The big gray thing in the sky. Upon this natural satellite, Dr. Evil had once installed his secret moonbase to be able to attack the world with his "Laser". However, he was not the ONLY one to build anything on the moon. A few miles from his base...

image

...was another! In fact, the recent activity FROM Dr. Evil's secret moonbase had caused certain systems from long ago to start up again. Built to look like it was part of the moon, the unknown refuge began its quiet power-up, and the lights soon switched on, revealing Enclave insignia's all over the place. Computers were awakening from their long slumber, and so is someone else... Within a large stasis chamber, on a medical bed, there lies a single figure in an old gray-and-black Enclave Powersuit, their one and only Cryo Soldier. He was not a Fallout Sector man. They came after his time. He was shot up here on an experimental mission, and as he awoke...he received automated information from the computers: A mission. He knew, going in, that he might be called at any time to get to work on something up here, even without maybe knowing what's going on back on Earth. It didn't matter. This place was his dominion and he would take care of it.

"Enclave command, this is agent Absolute Zero reporting for duty. Have received orders to take over enemy lunar base. Will report in again when the mission is complete, over and out."

Stepping out of the chamber, he entered his personal weapons locker, a bank vault of weapons, and armed himself with Plasma Guns and Enclave Cryo Blaster. From there, he stepped through the airlock and out into that big ole' moon, taking big space-jumps with the suit's enhanced movement to get where he was going. He saw some strange robot turrets all around this base made to look like a moon crater and fired on them with plasma. But upon entering the enemy airlock, he switched to his Cryo Blaster and went Mr. Freeze on anything that moved...so as to preserve whatever he shot and not damage equipment. There, he found some weird robots with...rouge and lipstick on for some reason...followed by a robot sphere that appeared to be in charge and spoke in an English accent. Absolute Zero found no further resistance as he inspected the controls for this "Laser". Why...was it in quotation marks? Nevermind. He had to try this out! Let's see...just a quick test-firing.

KA-ZOOOWWW!!!

He watched the beam fire off into space, and then...he saw a kind of bright flash. Aaand that's when the robot sphere nearby thawed out to get a good look at things going on.

Wheatley: Hmmm...you know, we're suppose to hit those reflective satellites around the Earth. Iooks like you hit something, but it wasn't any satellite.

"Huh... I wonder what."

We showed you that, so we could tell you this: The "Laser" beam hit a flying saucer. In fact, it was the very flying saucer containing none other than Charler Cannon! There was no stopping it. A big ragged hole had been blasted into the side of the thing and it was falling through the atmosphere! It would spin wildly and frantically, and then actually tear in half to leave two parts rapidly approaching the general area of Eddie, Grendal, the Shadowrunners, and Steinmetz. But where oh where is Charlie?!


Charlie you ask? Why he's tucked away nice and cozy in the spare escape pod, floating down behind the two fireballs chunks of space ship with a giant parachute slowing his decent. The impact of the debris smashed a crater into the ground mere metres away from Eddie, with Charlie's pod gently coming to rest moments later behind it. No signs of life stirred from within for the meantime however...

Something Somewhere Garage
Close Encounters of the Hillbilly Kind

And so it was, on the year of our Lord two thousand something sometime, that His great beast, a being many generations of inbreeding in the making, was finally unleashed upon the world, so as to administer His divine judgement, guided by his loyal follower and mentor, Eddie, Grand Ken of Bee (a suburb of New Wiltonshire, itself a suburb of New Bobhaven, itself a suburb of the Nevada desert). The sacred notes were struck upon the Guitar of Awakening, and so the beast roareth, throwing a knife upon a bush (and for good reason, for this bush was not burning, thus not a direct line to the Lord, thus a charlatan trying to misguide them, a heretic of the highest degree), and, with a vengeful roar...

...Turned and faced his disciple (who is also his mentor, it's complicated), and with naught but a moment to waste, surged forward, gracefully flaying his hands in the air, galloping with the elegance of an antelope with a lion biting its arse, his angelic face twisting and turning into a grand array of gestures, like a man that spent the last eight hours furiously masturbating. One couldn't help but admire his muscles, his smooth facial features, be overawed by his finesse, his magesty and be bewildered...[1]

That he could trip so easily.

Taking a step aside and dodging the uberbilly's blow, Eddie extended his leg and tripped him, and so dropped the beast head-first onto the sacred ground. With a satisfied growly giggle, he hopped a few steps back, preparing to play the next notes in his attempts to communicate.

But then, he raised his head and stared at the sky.

And he saw them.

And with but a moment's deliberation, grinned.

*DRAN-RAN-RAN-RAN*

"You shake my nerves and you rattle my brain!"

With each note played, he took a few steps forward and to the left.

*DRAN-RAN-RAN-RAN*

"Too much love drives a man insane!"

Another four steps, this time back a bit, to the right.

*DRAN-RAN-RAN-RAN*

"You broke my will,"

*DRAN-RAN-RAN-RAN*

"Oh what a thrill!"

*DRAN-RAN-RAN-RAN*

"Goodness gracious..."

He crossed his arms and pointed to his left and right...

"GREAT BALLS OF FIRE!"

Pointing exactly on the spots two great fireballs fell from the sky and crashed in smoking craters on the ground.

Satisfied with his correct prediction and perfect execution, he started dancing around as he played the riff, stopping just a few paces away from where an escape pod landed.

"I learned to love all of Hollywood money!"

He turned to the door of the pod,

*TAP TAP TAP TAP*

"You came along and you moved me honey!"

*KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK*

"I changed my mind..."

*BANG BANG BANG BANG*

"Looking fine..."

He turned around, hand rubbing his chin contemplatively, wondering why no one was responding.

"Goodness gracious, great balls of fire..."

He thought about how he was going to go about this, he couldn't exactly axe his way through that and say "Here's Eddie!", that could cause an interplanetary incident! No, no, he needed a scapegoat...

It just so happened that a certain uberbilly was getting up. Eddie turned to look at the door again. It didn't look like it was holding up very well. He turned to look at Grendy again, this time grinning. They only had a brief interaction before, but Eddie, with his vast language skills, had understood just what he needed to do. The wonderful feat of genetics stood on its legs and turned to look at him, only to be greeted with...

And at that moment, a repeat of their previous bonding moment happened, with Grendel rushing at him, murder (or an orgasm) in his eyes, lunging forward...

...Only for Eddie to step aside again, and the monster of the lake crashed on the door, the impact taking both into the pod itself. Dusting himself off and fixing his hat, Eddie excitedly followed them, entering and...

"I COME IN PEACE!" he yelled in a grandoise manner, checking his surroundings. Grendel seeing stars and getting intimate with that door, and some human guy wearing a loincloth and a pink bonnet. How underwhelming.

Those aliens get wierder fetishes every day.

First order of business: Check under the loincloth. Hmm, no damage spotted there. At least they didn't take away the boy's manhood, because he didn't look like the kinda person that could build an information network out of starving beggar kids.

"Planet Eddie to Astroboy, do ya copy?" He said as he tapped on the kid's head like a woodpecker, pestering him awake.

[1] For added effect, imagine all this in slow motion

Note: Collab with @RipVanTinkle: part 1

Megaton - Outside Megaton
Part One: Misunderstandings

By the time he heard the gates opening again, he had calmed down.

Though, "calm" may be an overstatement. It was less calmness and more hopelessness, with a little bit of apathy and self-loathing mixed in. Not the best of moods, definitely not in the top 10.

He needed time. This had been a most difficult couple of days. He was exhausted, both physically and emotionally, and had reached his breaking point more than once in one day. He didn't need more of that. There was a concept, in the old world, a most peculiar concept, called vacation. A vacation sounded just what he needed right about now. Yes, time to recollect himself, rest, stomach the trauma and move on.

So of course he wouldn't be getting any of that.

From the opening gates emerged a tall figure wearing metal armour normally painted silver, but now stained crimson. The grin she let out as she saw him would have been uplifting, were her face not so bloody. Now it only was disturbing. She picked up the pace as she got nearer, and her approach was the last thing he wanted right now. Between his feelings and that display... there was too much going in his head about her, and now just wasn't the time to dwell on those.

Yet, there he stood, frozen in place, looking at her come closer and closer. He couldn't muster the energy to react in any sort of way. And besides, that would only make things worse, he bet.

"Jonathan! My Pugilist!" she exclaimed as she locked him unexpectedly in a hug, so unexpectedly that he dropped the withered rose from his hand. A weak hug, with barely any strength put into it. Quite atypical of her. That hug revealed more about the princess' current position than she would probably like to admit. "Ahh, I am so very happy to see you here - standing no less!"

"I believe I still have that first-aid kit in here somewhere. We look absolutely terrible! Ahh, scars, the tattoos of battle." The princess cracked a grin, but he couldn't reply in kind. He stared on at her miserably, with half-closed eyes. Yes, they had the luxury to remark how terrible they looked like. The dismembered corpses she left behind looked even worse, he wagered, but they couldn't worry about that anymore. They couldn't worry about anything.

The princess turned her arm, revealing an open wound still bleeding, albeit lightly, and Jonathan's eyes darted open in astonishment and worry, and guilt stung at his chest. She was wounded. She was wounded because of him.

"I may need your help."

"Uh, yes. Of course..." he stumbled, before removing his backpack, helping the princess with her first aid kit and examining the would. Nothing major, but it would need proper car-

"You...wanted to talk to me?"

What... was he thinking about, again? He was sure it was something important, but upon hearing that voice his mind froze. He turned his head to see, and he felt a thousand needles piercing his back and brain. Lucy Black, reluctant to even face him, was answering his request.

He stared at her for a few seconds, his face turning ever more remorseful the more he stared.

Damn it, old man, snap out of it!

"Uh... yes, I do..." he managed to mutter, turning to look at Kristin's wound, "But... Ms. Kristin is wounded and in need of medical attention. Please wait a few minutes, I have to take care of her wound."

After a reactionary closing of the eye, Lucy Black let out an audible sigh of frustration. Leaning against a nearby wall, her expression grew vacant as she stared off into the distance. Presumably looking at the outline of Springvale on the horizon.

Jonathan let out a longwinded sigh. Right, he also had to take care of that. Talking with Lucy wasn't what he wanted to do right now. But with him and Kristin going on their own way (note to self: talk Kristin into leaving them alone) this was probably the only chance he'd get.

"Your wound doesn't look too bad," he started, disgruntled "but better safe than sorry. Could we remove parts of your armour to treat it better?"

Unclipping the pauldron that covered most of her upper arm, Kristin openly grimaced at the sting of anaesthetic and the rough work of Jonathan's hands. If Jonathan was taking note of Kristin instead of the wound, he would have discovered the Injured Princess bearing a concerned frown for her unenthused partner.

"That will do just fine, Jonathan.", Kristin thanked Jonathan with a weak smile before grabbing sanitary wipes from the first-aid kit. Slowly working at cleaning up her face while using a mirror from her bag. Quite content with sitting down, a tired reply followed "I will wait here for you of course."

"Yes... very well" he mumbled in return, reluctantly getting up. He wanted to argue that he wasn't finished with the wound's treatment, but he knew that it would just be stalling on his part, not to mention risking angering the Princess by disregarding her words. "I don't think it will take long. When I return I'll take a look at your wound again." he cracked a half-smile, the best he could muster, and started walking towards Lucy with slow steps. Another attempt at prolonging the inevitable.

How does one start a conversation after everything that happened, after witnessing... that? Should he be cold and professional? Could he even be like that at this point? Step by step he was getting closer and he had no idea what to say.

This wasn't looking very well.

He reached Lucy, having come up with a few sentences as to how to start the discussion. As she turned to look at him and their eyes met, though, he found himself forgetting what he was going to say. Unable to bare her stare, he turned to face the ground, and stepped closer.

"Thank you, for waiting..." he said awkwardly, scratching the back of his head. Think, damn you, think! "Are you... feeling better? I... I caused you trouble again, I-I'm..." Yes, he was. He had said that sentence a dozen times now. He was getting rather repetivive, "I'm sorry" he sighed and hanged his head.

Having raised an eyebrow at Jonathan's inquiry about how she felt, Lucy reflexively crossed her arms, not wishing to delve into anything regarding her current mental state.

"I'm back on my feet, aren't I?", opening her mouth, she caught herself and sighed behind gritted teeth, "I don't why you're apologising. Or what you're apologising for. I don't know..."

She trailed off, opening her hands and raised them at her sides. Looking bewildered, her eyelid twitched under the stress that was rapidly developing. "I don't know with you, so tell me, what do you want from me?"

"Wha- What I want...?" Jonathan flinched, taken aback by Lucy's sudden hostility. He took a step back, looking stressed at the ground, desperate to find words to say. And if he took too long? Would that anger her more? No, no, that must be avoided. Think, old fool, think!

Did you really expect her to react any differently? 'Oh hello, Jon! I'm doing fine! Thanks for today! It's not often someone put the life of my boyfriend and I in jeopardy, or make me remember things I don't want to!' Seriously, Johnny-boy, you're dumber than bricks sometimes.

"I... I want your safety..." he said meekly as he raised his hands in front of his face, "And for that... I need to ask you questions... about this new Enclave." He took a step forward, and looked at her pleadingly, "L-look, I know you want to leave all that behind and that... that you don't want to think back to those times, but... I don't have much of a choice in the matter. If I thought there was another way... I wouldn't talk about this..."

Lucy would have taken a distrustful step backwards if it weren't for her already having her back to the wall. Hearing Jonathan's plea for information about the Enclave of all things had set her off.

"Why?", She responded flatly, ignoring the sentiment regarding her safety, "What could I possibly know that could help you and -- no, scratch that. First, what the hell is going on? Second, am I talking to Jonathan or someone coming out of retirement?"

Again, aggression. No, this wasn't going well at all. Jonathan had clearly lost his charm with women. He could feel his heart hammering on in his chest. The air was getting suffocating.

"It doesn't make much of a difference anymore..." he frowned, staring at the ground. He didn't want to tell her like this, it would only serve to her feel worse, "The reason you're here now... The reason Shifty is here, was because I had to make a deal with that numbered bitch. I... had to agree to work for her. Me and... Ms. Kristin too. You two are off the hook now."

At least, if she intends to keep her end of the bargain.

He turned to look at her again, "Do you see why I ask, now? I'm walking into the deathclaw's den blind and unarmed. Give me something, anything! That's all I ask. And after that... You'll never have to worry about having to suffer my presence ever again."

Lucy brought a hand to her forehead, clearly cycling between emotions and connecting the dots as her frown dissipated from anger and entered into the realm of horror.

"L-Let me get this straight - ...", Holding her hand up, "You and Kristin took my place. I can't give you anything if I don't know the specifics...", trailing off once more, she let out a hollow laugh, "It never ends. It never fucking ends with them."

Sliding down the wall, Lucy placed her fingers to the side of her head, desperately searching for solutions where none could be found. "Then I'll take both of your places again. She approached me first -- this...this was originally a job for me. What has she got you doing?"

"You will be doing nothing of the sort!" Jonathan lashed out in a growl, surprising even himself as to his reaction. "I... I mean..." he rubbed his face, sighing, "Lucy, I'm done anyway. The moment they identified me I wasn't getting away. I was fortunate I was able to turn the situation around as I did, and got you off the hook... And, it's not like it's a job for you." He sit down beside her, biting his lip, "They want from me what they always wanted. Weapons. More of them. It's not like I'm good at anything else, anyway..."

"Lucy, don't burden yourself over what happened. I made the bargain knowing full well what it's got in store for me. So, please... let's have this talk and bury it. You're free now..." he extended his hand, intending to place it on her shoulder.

In a futile attempt to make herself smaller, Lucy brought her knees up to her chest. The burnt-out female would have matched Jonathan's anger and used it as fuel on any other day, but after everything, even she couldn't rise above the situation and burn everything around her. There was too much at stake and she had something to live for now.

"There's something that I don't like about this particular brand of 'freedom'. I did my fair share of sacrificing, so I'm not about to stop worrying about the people that stepped in for me.", sighing, Lucy looked directly at Kristin, who was uncharacteristically frowning at her. "That explains why she went off at me earlier. Seems like she's carrying a bigger burden than that sword, you know?"

Lucy paused as she rested her head against the wall, turning to look at Jonathan, her face was now crumpled in a conflict of emotions. "I am sorry. I'm still struggling to let people in, so that's I've been so -yeah, sorry.", atypical of the former-gauss-girl, she stumbled over her own words.

"So, I understand you - weapons development.", she gestured towards Jonathan and then to Kristin, "I don't get her though. What is a BlamCo Heiress going to do? Anyway, I'll help - what do you want to know about them?"

"Kristin?" He turned to look at the Princess, and her frown directed at Lucy. And Lucy mentioned something about going at her? He'd have to ask later. "Well, it's not often you find people skilled enough to take out two elite Enclave soldiers. I will be giving the gear, and she will be giving the training."

He sighed again. This one was more of a sigh of relief, as the situation seemed defused. He would have preferred that Lucy would just turn over a new leaf, but he respected her decision, and the reasoning for it. "As for what I wish to know, well, the more the better. But let's start with the basics. Number One. What can you tell me about him? Is his goal the same as the now-deceased President's? And what about the Fallout sector? Never in my years have I heard of it before."

"You think this is going to work because I've got doubts as to this thing working. I mean they've got a random self destruct button in an armory, they probably haven't mastered Gauss technology yet. Right... we should probably find some other way out of here or maybe just disarm that auto-destruct sequence. I mean we can do that right? Right? Right?"

Oh 'we' are going to disarm it? Trixie thought to herself in a sassed tone.

"So... well... what do you think? I'm not gonna fit in there... at least not all of me."

Trixie looked at 209, and back to the escape pod, then back to 209, then back to the escape pod, he wasn't going to fit in there, but she could...
He did carry my unconscious body away from a large group of armed guards however, perhaps I owe him that. Trixie contemplated, almost ignoring the fact that if she did try to escape by herself he could probably rip her arms off in that oversized suit.

"We don't have time for this." She told him, bringing up the console by the self-destruct sequence.
She turned back to #209 "I'll need absolute silence." She brought up, before beginning to tap away at the console with the speed of an anime fan responding to youtube comments.

Note: Collab with @Neuromancer Part 2

Lucy Black & Jonathan McKenna || Megaton - Outside Megaton Gates
Part Two: Exposition Explanations
((Jonathan's perspective, hence Lucy's bolded text))

Lucy shrugged but started counting on her fingers as she mentally recalled the previous events during her brief time at the Enclave Vault.

"I met a few important people when I infiltrated the Vault.

#411: As a loyalty test, she made me put Thomas into cryogenic stasis. I didn't think that was even real, so I believed that I killed him. Regular Enclave soldier, no armor-highlights, that's how you can tell Fallout Sector from the regular soldiers.

Fallout Jack: Second-in-charge and head of the Fallout Sector, or at the very least, everyone in the Sector answered to him. He was my Father's student. When the Enclave caught wind of Isaac's betrayal, they sent Jack. Jack couldn't do that to his mentor, so the task was handed off to Fallout Bob. That - ...person was responsible for burning Springvale to the ground and killing Isaac.

Something interesting about the Fallout Sector; they are and I quote 'Elite members who don't even feel the weight of the suit while running and jumping, or can fight really well, or are fundamental geniuses beyond their scientists'. All of them seem to be specialists in different fields. The unstoppable Vanguards leading the teams.

Fallout Jack: Blue armor highlights. Level-headed, good-natured, has a daughter named Natsuki, good talker and excellent fighter. Gun specialist.

Fallout Bob: A pyromaniac soldier? Orange armor highlights, switches between flamers at range and a power claymore at close quarters. Brutish, violent, spanish, egotistical and he can't be reasoned with.

There's a sniper as well, who took my original eye by shooting the Gauss Rifle Plus' scope. And who knows how many others...

Number One, the Enclave Leader, red armor highlights on a more sleek armor design. He can't track down the thorn in their side: The Enclave Underground, a splinter group that believe in the old Enclave ideals. All the Vaults are monitored, so they aren't in any that have been investigated. Most likely where Isaac and my mother, Amy Kane, ended up though. I know nothing about him personally -- Jack is loyal to the new cause -- which is the total restoration of the Wasteland, if that's even possible.

The Enclave Vault is the source of their weapon's technology. Jack mentioned things like flying fortresses, new vertibirds, bombs, an 'MGB'...so much. Apparently it's hidden under one of the most secure places in old US. Whatever that means, my geography is sketchy.

When I was last there, Number One mentioned preparing for something big, really big. I don't know what...but that guy, there was no lying to him. No matter how good I thought I was, it felt like he was playing me the entire time.

That's off the top of my head -- is there anything more specific?"

Jonathan got up, and scratched his chin, staring onwards into the wilderness, "That's a lot to swallow." he finally said, turning back to look at Lucy.

"#411 is planning a coup." he said, dropping the bomb as casually as one can, "She wants to depose Number One and have FalloutJack take the helm. Though, with what you told me, I am beginning to wonder just what chances she actually has, or whether she's as smart about keeping it hidden as she likes to think. As for her soldiers, they all look like..." He turned to look at Lucy's party, and pointed at one of them, the blue-haired teenager.

"That girl. Back in your house, as you were unconcious, #411 showed us a whole lot of girls just like her through a feed. In other words, the original was cloned." he took a long, drawn-out sigh, "My wife... ex-wife spearheaded the cloning project. She was a genius at her field, way above the rest of the staff." he turned to look at Lucy again, bitter, "And a complete bat-shit crazy basket case. Funny thing, what grief does to a person..." he stared to the ground, thinking for a brief moment, before raising his head again, "Though I don't know if she survived or not, it's clear that her research has. And if this new Enclave has achieved even a 10th of what she theorised, they will be a very, very formidable force. So, I suppose I have three questions." He raised three fingers, "One, from your experience, how powerful is this new Enclave militarily? They have the superior tech and excellent commanding officers, what about their regular stuff? Numbers, training, anything you can come up with.

Two, what can you tell me of #411, and the Intelligence Sector? I know of her obsession with FalloutJack, what else can you tell me about her, and what do you think of the chances of her coup?

And lastly... What can you tell me of the blue-haired girl? She can't have been picked at random for cloning. No way #411 would have made her a central part of her plan if there wasn't something extraordinary about her."

Lucy was visibly distressed at the mention of Sylph being cloned. "This is insane."

After a long pause, Lucy held up three fingers to mirror Jonathan's, counting each as she answered the questions.

"First:

The new Enclave puts the current Brotherhood to shame. The regular soldiers? Well, think about it, if you put up a system where individual soldiers are rewarded with status, influence & power for their individual performance...you create an environment where everyone is striving to be the best. Just walking through a few corridors lead to enormous numbers - and this is coming from someone that stood on the walls of the Citadel amongst the Brotherhood army. The only point where I wasn't being watched were my private quarters.

Second:

#411 barely registered on my radar until I realised she was the same person at my house. She has a daughter named Constance. A catgirl, no I am not lying, young female, late teens/early twenties. Poses as a Brotherhood 'Scout'. Sorry, I can't help you with her.

Although I think her chances of success greatly hinge on whether she has FalloutJack's support or not. If not, the Enclave will suffer minor casualties. If Jack is in on it, then imagine the Fallout Sector with an army under their command and plausible deniability. Either way, this is bad.

Third:

Let's put it this way: The BlamCo Princess can take down two armed Enclave soldiers. One fully-trained Sylph can bring Kristin to a standstill. An army of Sylph's? Devastating. (There are some things money can't buy. For everything else, there's BlamCo-Card))

I think what was extraordinary was Sylph's combat ability and disregard for self-preservation. There's one massive problem though...two personalities exist in Sylph over there. With a choker: Sylphee - lovable childish maniac with a love for cheerfully hurling herself at anything and everything. She is the embodiment of 'ignorance is bliss'. Without a choker: Sylph is the one you should fear. Cold, uncommunicative, ruthlessly violent. She's the protector, something that emerges when Sylphee is under threat. This is also the most intelligent one, which makes me think that this is the original personality. You either have an army of chaos or ruthless efficiency.

I don't really want to go into her history. But if you're looking at a connection between #411 and Sylph, look no further than Henry McGee...the vile sadist that enslaved Sylph at a young age and shaped her into the monster that she can become. Yeah, Thomas' brother. Henry was an Undertaker, but he's dead now. How long ago, I don't know. But it was plenty of time to clone Sylph before I had spent most of my time with her during the course of last week."

Lucy sighed and got up to her feet. Staring at Sylph, the nervous biting of her lower lip had her worried over whether she was the original or not.

"She is the original, right? How can you tell?"

Note: Final part of collab with @RipVanTinkle

Outside Megaton
Part Three: Future Plans and itsy bitsy bit of drama

"I can't say," Jonathan shrugged, reluctantly, "Depends on much progress was done with the cloning project. Or, if there were any alterations to her formula..." he scratched chin, and stared at this Sylph, trying to think back on the feed #411 showed them. Were the clones wearing chokers or not? "I suppose the best way about it would be to find a clone and compare the two." he sighed, "I'm sorry, Lucy, I can't help with that. Most of my ex's more... brilliant ideas came after the divorce. Even with my rank, most of her research was classified."

He patted her on the back, "You really care about her, don't you?"

Pausing to consider the entire situation, Lucy resumed a more relaxed composure, thoroghly lost in productive thoughts, instead of dwelling over the negatives. She was exhausted, emotionallly, and it showed. Yet there was a sense of passion in her eyes, the same sense of passion that motivated her to fight against all odds. Carefully, she weighed her words and responded. Devoid of anger, a grim determination underlined her words. A rapid, yet positive departure from her earlier state of mind.

"This is a big mess. Fow what it's worth though, if you need help down the line...I'll be available. I've had my family and life stolen by them, I'm going to draw the line at friends."

Running a hand through her hair, Lucy's lip curled into a half-smile for the first time in their conversation. A smile undercut somewhat by the absent-minded biting of her lower lip.

"More than words can desribe. She saved me.", Lucy admitted while she stared at the now-chipper Sylphee, "She arrived at just the right time and pulled me out of a very dark place. Her safety was the primary reason why I didn't risk everything and put a Gauss round in Number One's skull. I wouldn't be here right now without her."

Pausing a little to nudge Jonathan in the ribs, Lucy's eye darted to Kristin and back to meet Jonathan's gaze. "Seems like you really care about her, don't you?"

Jonathan's face turned sour, "It's nothing like that." he stated, almost bitterly, "Kristin got involved in this whole mess because I had to use her as a bargaining chip with that harlot. I am thus responsible for whatever happens to her. And besides..." he thought back to the fight, the whirlwind of blood, that crazed smile, and the rose, "...I know when I'm out of my league."

"Really?", Lucy tilted her head in a curious manner, "Because she hasn't stopped looking at you while we've been talking. And for just a 'partner', she's willing to put everything at risk for you and fight for your honour." For a moment, her tone dipped into bitter wariness, "Of course, she ended up fighting for herself by targeting Sylph.", Lucy perked up a little more as she carried on, "I think the sentiment still stands. She seems to care greatly."

Fumbling with the thigh-holster, Lucy unclipped one of the laser pistols and held it up to Jonathan's chest. "Take it. You'll need it more than I do."

"I appreciate the gesture..." he said as he showed her the the holstered pistols at his back, "But I'm packed. And besides, you already gave me that hunting rifle, remember?" he pulled out the plasma pistol, "So, I think I will be returning the favour. Take this. It's another one of my works. Where you're going you'll need more firepower than laser." He waved it around, and highlighted a button at the upper part of the grip, "hold on to that, and it'll charge the next shot. You can see how charged it is here," he showed her a small gauge next to it, "The more you hold the bigger the bang. Just... don't let the gauge get to red. Red probably means the pistol blows up. After firing a hypercharged shot, it needs around 10 seconds to cooldown, similar to..." his voice trailed off, and he sighed before continued disgruntled, "...Gauss Rifle Plus." He suddenly felt his chest tightening.

"Mini beast mode!", Lucy exclaimed excitedly while cradling her new plasma pistol, a particular weapon that was difficult to find in stores due the association with the Brotherhood or Enclave soldiers. "It's not a rifle, but I think this will suit me much better. I love it..."

After miming a quickdraw and measuring the weight in her hands, Lucy replaced one laser pistol with plasma instead. She intended to give the remaining weapon to someone else.

"Uhh, thank you Jonathan, really...for a lot more than just this weapon...", Lucy scratched the back of her head awkwardly, "Like I said, if you need help down the line. Seriously, don't hesitate...like it or not, you've involved me by telling me, especially if Sylph is involved. Might be handy to have someone on the outside at some point, just saying.", sheepishly, she nodded, clearly in something of a better mood.

"Oh? Eh, yeah, uh... you're welcome..." Jonathan stumbled his words, as he started looking around awkwardly. He hadn't been used to being thanked. "I suppose I can't keep you from involving yourself, since your friend is involved..." His head darted upwards, as though he had an epiphany, "Actually, since you want to help, I have just the job. #411 has given me a 6 month time limit before I start working for her. In those months, I plan to get us allies in the war, to even the odds." His voice almost sounded excited, "Help me get allies. Any individual is good, but I'm hoping to get at least some of the major powers of the Capital Wasteland involved. Like it or not, this war will affect everyone, and I'm sure they would prefer to be on the winning side. So, if there's one thing you can do for me, is help me with that. Especially with the Brotherhood. I expect having a hard time with them given my background."

Lucy mulled it over, scrunching her face slightly at the logistical nightmare.
"Sure, I can try. Where do I send them and what are they fighting for exactly? Knowing my luck, I'll be visiting the Brotherhood again, but I know a guy, bit of an ass...but he can help or get the support you might need. So yeah, I'll see what I can do."

It was Lucy's turn to pat Jonathan on the back. "Good luck, Jonathan.", Lucy pointed over her shoulder, "I've got people waiting on me, is there anything else?"

"Yes. Shifty." he turned to look at the tall young undertaker, and turned to look at Lucy, "I don't mean to poke around in your relationship, but..." he scratched the back of his head, "I worry about him. When I visited your room, he was drinking. And when I talked about you, he stared at me as though we were having an affair behind his back. I worry about him. And, in all honesty... He reminds me of myself in my youth. And, if I'm right, right now you're what's keeping him sane. Unfortunately, that means he'll likely be obsessive and..." he stopped, not wanting to go on, "Bottom line is, be careful, for both of your sakes."

A shadow of a glare had started to form, one which had gradually faded over the course of Jonathan's expression. "Never knew that you two talked, hmm...", Glancing over at Shifty with a look of puzzlement and curiousity, Lucy turned back to Jonathan. "I'll keep that in mind while I figure out, whatever-it-is we're doing. We have a lot to discuss - in time."

After a brief pursing of her lips, Lucy looked at Kristin. "I should say something to her before I leave. She is...full of surprises. Not really sure what to make of her, but there's more than meets the eye. So be careful okay?"

"I will try. Though I think I have the better end the deal. Whatever's happening in Dunwich... that's fucked up. Anyhow, let's-"

Not far from the gates of Megaton, the lone Ghoul-for-hire had been watching both Lucy and Jon arguing from a distance, all the while trying to ignore Thomas and Sylphee behind her. So, when Lucy had finally turned away, calmer now, she decided to take that as her opportunity.

She strode over, and when she reached the two of them, she turned to Jonathan and put her hands on her hips.

"Glad to see you two have mostly worked things out. Now, all that's left is a matter of payment." she said simply, holding out her good hand while she stared at Jon with her one eye.

"Uuuuh..." stared Jonathan blankly, taken aback, turning to Lucy for support.

Lucy face cracked into a smile and soon a burst of laughter occured after seeing Jonathan's expression.

"Oh no, don't look at me!", she smiled and held up her hands, apparently absolving her of all responsibility. "Good luck!"

Turning and walking over to Arizona's side, Lucy placed a hand on her shoulder, still struggling to stifle a giggle at the absurd notion of payment after everything that had happened. "Thanks for waiting, I'll be with Sylphee after you get some compensation for our merry band of mercenaries."

Waving over her shoulder, Lucy collected her things and made her way over to Kristin.

Seeing the young woman break into a smile and start to giggle made the Old Ghoul's face soften a bit with a small smile of her own, especially when she placed a hand on her shoulder and thanked her for waiting.

"Well you seem to be in a better mood. Good. I'll meet you there." she said, before turning back to Jon.

Jonathan met the ghoul's gaze with a mixture of confusion and horror; an LMG wielding one-eyed ghoul was pretty high on the list of things not to fuck with, "Ehm..." he said, hesitantly, "Payment? What... for?"

"Saving your ass when that fake Irish fuck decided to set his goons on you, and by extension me and my group. The least you can do is compensate us for the ammo we used to cover you." she said firmly, giving him a very pointed stare.

"Uuuh..." he muttered as he took a step back, "No, you, uh, definately don't look like a charity, hehe" a nervous laugh. That joke wasn't funny, Jon, you're making your situation worse. "But, uhm, unfortunately... I am broke" he showed his empty pockets, shrugged and nervously smiled, the kind that say 'please don't fill me with bullet holes'.

A variety of emotions passed over the Ghoul's face at that moment. Namely, irritation, then disappointment, and finally resignation.

"I should've figured. You don't look the type to have much in the way of caps on you. Fine. Don't get your ass killed then, or else the ammo we used was for nothin', and I'll make a point to dig you up and piss on your corpse." she told him with a glare, before turning to walk away.

Part of her had had the feeling that asking for compensation was pointless, she thought as she went to rejoin Thomas and Sylphee. The rest of her, however, knew she had a reputation to uphold. You start saving people for free, you got a reputation for being a goody-two-shoes hero, and an easy mark. And she was determined to stay a freelancer without a better nature, because you couldn't eat off of gratitude and fuzzy feelings. Still... The others deserved some compensation for their own work. Glancing at her pack, she remembered the caps that she stole from Moriarty's Saloon.

If she couldn't be a freelancer without a better nature, then at least she could keep that better nature hidden.

* * *

Sighing with relief that he dodged that bullet, Jonathan turned to look at Lucy's group. This had been a long day, a very long day indeed. But it seemed to be ending on a high note; he somehow managed to patch up his relationship with Lucy and had gotten a good deal of useful information. This Fallout Sector was as mysterious as it was dangerous, it seemed, and Jonathan felt Lucy was just scratching the surface with them. As for where this Enclave Vault was, and given that is was in a 'secure old world' place, only one location sprung to mind.

Fort Knox.

He always wondered what the deal was with the Fort Knox Vault and all the secrecy surrounding it, but he guessed now he got his answer. The plot thickened, and suddenly wondered what their chances actually were.

But that was only for a few seconds. He was tired and hungry, and these thoughts were best reserved for a clear mind. Turning to face Kristin, he started walking towards her, smiling.

It was the first genuine smile he had in some time.

Arizona
The Wild Wastelands | The Road To Dunwich | Outside Megaton Gates
"Where's my caps, bit--Oh, wait."

It wasn't much more than about 225 caps in all, as it turned out. After rifling through her pack for every last loose cap that she had dumped in there from the cash register in Moriarty's, she figured that that meant one of two things: Either Moriarty didn't get much business, or he was more shrewd than she had first thought, and cleared out the register regularly. Still, it split three ways well enough.

So by the time she made her way back to the other three in her little motley crew of mercenaries, she had divided the caps evenly enough and handed each of them around 75 caps each.

"There. You all get a cut, courtesy of the dipshit Moriarty and his goons were after in the first place." she lied smoothly, jabbing a thumb back in the direction of Jon, "If nothing else, it should be enough to cover the cost of ammo if you used anyway. Otherwise, it's cheap pay."

Really, as far as she was concerned, 75 caps may as well have been chump change, and depending on whatever the job was, that wouldn't have been nearly enough to be worth her while. Still, it was better than nothing, and if anyone was going to be working with her, she insisted that they'd get paid too.

Still, it'd just figure that the moron at the center of all the trouble earlier would've been broke. And was Lucy's friend. Otherwise she probably would've shot the bastard in the foot. Or at least slugged him in the jaw.

Turning to the trio of misfits, she put her hands on her hips and blew a stray lock of red hair out of her face.

"So, are we finally ready to get this shitshow on the road or what? I ain't getting any younger." she announced.


[ dr. sorenson ]
The Wild Wastelands | Following The Post-Apocalypse | Springvale School
"Angry face."

There were times that Jenna was exceedingly glad for the confines of her Science Suit, and now was precisely one of those times. Even if Constance wasn't blind, she wouldn't have seen the tinge of blush on Jenna's cheeks behind her helmet.

"No. It's quite alright, Miss Jenna. It smells absolutely divine. I think the waiting part, while taxing, is going to make it all the more delicious."

"Oh, stop. It's nothing! I just want to help, that's all." she said with a soft giggle.

One of the Sylphy's, however, wasn't nearly so happy about her attempt to help with cooking, presumably the Sylphy who used to do all the cooking judging by the bloodied clothes. As she grumbled, Jenna turned to look at her, frowny face projected across her helmet.

"Sylphy Sylphy!"

Before Jenna could say anything, or even begin to translate what the Sylphy supposedly said, Constance was already replying in her stead.

"It's quite alright. I'm sure Miss Jenna doesn't need your help. You should just relax."

Even Jenna could hear the tinge of relief in her voice. The Sylphy, however, didn't take so kindly to Constance's words, and huffed before leaning against a nearby pipe, and the valve responsible for the gas flow into the ovens. The sudden FWOOOOSH!!! was enough to make Jenna panic, and quickly slipping on the tattered oven mitts that she had found earlier, she opened each oven and practically dove into the infernos inside to save the food.

As it turned out, the Smothered Deathclaw Steaks were only a little overdone. That was enough to make Jenna sigh in relief as she turned each oven off and slipped her hands out of the now lightly-charred mitts. But when she turned to the Sylphy responsible for the enthusiastic gas flow, her hands were clenched into fists at her sides and a red, angry face was projected over her helmet.

Her Pip-Boy chose that moment to be on the fritz as she slowly strode over to the Sylphy, the angry expression over her helmet dissolving into jagged red static. She finally stopped less than a foot away, towering over the clone.

"Don't. Do that." she said firmly but quietly.

Some Garage... Somewhere Somewhere 112...

Grendel halted its assault, and studied the ghoul in front of him. It grunted several times, gesturing with its knives for Eddie to back off a little as it circled around him, sniffing the air the ghoul had just been standing in before turning to face him again.

Grendel nodded to Eddie and then showed him the picture of himself and Slyphee riding their horse. Grendel cocked his head quizzically as he did so.

Wild Wastelands | Doctor Evil's Vault of Evil
"(Oooo) Sail away for that seifuku..."
Enclave Heavy Weapons Specialist #209

"We don't have time for this." The pretty lady told him, bringing up the console by the self-destruct sequence, "I'll need absolute silence."

Now, it should be noted that the phrase 'absolute silence' was a phrase that the Enclave Heavy Weapons Specialist was unfamiliar with. Perhaps it was due to the fact that he was a Heavy Weapons Specialist, versed in the art of throwing down as much plasma down range as humanly possible as loud as humanly possible. To him, the two words used in conjunction was reserved for Steers, Enclave Scout Sniper Specialists (the natural enemy of the Enclave Heavy Weapons Specialist) and Communists. Trixie did not look like an Enclave Scout Sniper Specialist nor did she look like a Steer. He had yet to ascertain as to whether or not she was a communist but if there was one thing that you never spoke about on a first date, it was politics... and what caliber ammunition you've got.

As the lady began typing with the combined speed of one thousand monkeys manning one thousand type writers, E.D. #209 found himself rather amazed at the woman's display of dexterity... and made it known.

"Holy... fucking... shit." You could practically hear the Grunt's eye popping out of his head, "Can I be next with those hands of yours?"

It probably didn't take any stretch of the imagination as to what the Giant Grenade Chucker was implying and if you, my dear reader, don't get what it is that the Enclave Dominator was getting at, just remember, #209 only has two groups of categorization. Shootable and ... Sexable. Obviously Trixie was not yet in the Shootable category so it left the other group.

It was taking a while to disarm that self destruct mechanism. With 15 minutes left until total destruction of the Vault of Evil, E.D. #209 took it upon himself to take matters into his own hands.

"C'mon lady. Lets just get the hell out of here." He stated as he wrapped a phone pole sized arm around the woman and pushed her into the nearby escape pod before wedging himself into the hatch.

BEEP BEEP BEEP!

The warning sirens blared before the magnets hurled the car sized pod through its launch tube and out into the skies over the Wild Wastelands... and beyond.

Using a magnetic accelerator, as a general rule, is a good idea for a weapon but it's a rather bad idea when using it as a mechanism for propulsion for an escape pod. The Pod was able to clear the Vault in a little under 2 seconds and was able to clear the atmosphere in a little less than 2 minutes before gravity started overtaking the momentum of the escape pod. In those brief few moments, Enclave Heavy Weapons Specialist #209 found himself in the near weightless vacuum of space. It was probably a good thing that he was encased in his Power Armor since the survival rate of someone buck ass naked in space was pretty close to 0%. But as he and Trixie floated in space for a few moments, the Enclave Dominator saw the little blue marble known as Earth. The wretched Wasteland that spanned the entire planet. Despite the depressing brownness of the planet, there was also something rather peaceful about the view and for the next few moments, he wasn't obsessed with shooting something or having sex with something. He just stared at the planet.

And then gravity took over...


Wild Wastelands | Outside Smith Casey's Garage
"Coming in Hot!"
Enclave Heavy Weapons Specialist #209

If you throw a cylinder in the middle of a room at random and then move to a random spot in the room, the chances of your throwing another cylinder on top the first without aiming are fairly minuscule. If you can imagine expanding the room to the size of the D.C. Wastelands, it would be a miracle if you got it in the same neighborhood. Still, that's exactly what appeared to happen.

Cutting through the atmosphere at terminal velocity, an escape pod closed in on the building formerly known as Smith Casey's Garage. Were it not for the fact that the area was already occupied with a number of beings (one of which was a man in loin cloth and frilly bonnet, another was a Rock and Roll Ghoul and another was simply... Grendel... no one knew exactly what Grendel was) the landing of the Evil Escape Pod might have gone unnoticed.

A loud explosion signaled the ignition of retro rockets, slowing the descent of the Escape Pod to a few miles an hour before the parachute deployed, slowing down the rate of descent from bone breaking to headache inducing due to the loudness of the retro rockets and the fact that the Escape Hatch to the Escape Pod had been wedged upon by a mammoth suit of Power Armor... whose ass happened to be glowing red.

"Fffffffffffffuuuuuuuuuuck!!!" Enclave Heavy Weapons Specialist #209 screamed loudly as he felt his ass on the verge of sizzling like bacon on a hot pan.

Not bothering to wait for the Escape Pod to land, the mammoth of a man jumped off of the Escape Pod, looking for the nearest source of water.

"PSSSSSSSSSSSSHHHHHHHH!!!!" The man's ass went as he jumped into a drinking trough that had been set up for many a brahmin caravan that passed through.

THUD! Went the Evil Escape Pod as it landed directly on top of the Alien Escape Pod.

"What the fuck is that?!" E.D. #209 went when he spotted Charlie Cannon... clearly the more bizarre looking of the trio of oddities clustered in front of the Garage.

"Can I be next with those hands of yours?"
Trixie looked back at #209 for a moment with a blank expression.
"Absolute, silence..." She mentioned once again.

Not long was left, Trixie had to move fast if she wanted to save this place, she knew there wasn't too much she would have to go through before... "C'mon lady. Lets just get the hell out of here."

"Hey! What do think you're doing! Can't you see I'm trying to get us out of here!" She continued to ramble in frustration, kicking her legs and arms around after suddenly being grabbed and pushed into one of the escape pods.

"Can't you see I..." Her words were cut short by #209 jamming himself into the pod with her, squeezing any remaining breath she had out of her lungs.

Continuing to bang on #209's armor with as little room as her arms allowed her, they were suddenly shot into the great void of space, she stopped her assault as she noticed #209 came to a long pause, observing the planet in such a way caused her to do the same, before she finally came to a realisation.
How are we going to get down from here? And how have I not died yet?

One of her questions however was quickly answered, as the earth began to pull her and the clad enclave powertrooper toward it's loving embrace.
"You idiot!" She shouted as they both began to plummet toward the ground at a terminal velocity.

Suddenly however, she felt the retro rockets beginning to kick it, and let out a long sigh of relief, almost as if she was going to feint.

Her relief was quickly cut short however as she watched #209 leap from the pod, followed by a heavy THUD as it smashed into what Trixie thought must be the ground.

As the door remained open Trixie began to stumble out feeling somewhat dizzy, more of a surprise was that she managed to encounter such an event without being wrapped in some massive spacesuit.
Holding her head as she left the pod she looked below at a strange trio of wasteland enhabitants.

"I think I've a severe concussion..." She mentioned, holding her hand over her head as she finally escaped... The escape pod.

Well, What Do We Have Here?


It's a collab from Jack and Rip!

Lucy would hear the sounds of motorcycles on approach. It was a bit dusty to see who it was, at first, but then there would be this moment of shock, an image that she would not be able to blink away or shake from her head. Once the cycles came to a stop, she would see a man disembark from them - along with William Knight, Dudley Sullivan, and Scribe Ramsey of the BoS - who was the very spitting image of her father on the day he died. The look on his face was shocked as well, and yet somehow...relieved. Isaac Black had been gone - dead - for years, and now he was able to see his baby girl all grown up. He finally found his voice.

Isaac: It...it IS you, isn't it?

Isn't that what she should be asking? For a girl that was struggling with her grip on reality, this particular scene was going to be rather difficult. Turning to face the sounds of motorcycles, undeniably loud and attention-worthy, a trio of riders were fast approaching Megaton. Perhaps it was the sunlight that obscured her vision or maybe her intrusive memories had now become full-blown hallucinations, because she could have sworn that the most heavily-armored of men had resembled her father, Isaac Black.

"I can see him now.", The eyepatched & scarred female murmured, a hint to anyone nearby about why she was in such a dismal place emotionally, repeating the phrase with every step she had unconsciously taken towards the figure that was now exclusively approaching her. "This can't be real. This is all in my head..." Then he spoke. Or more accurately, he spoke, Isaac Black. His daughter's remaining eye widened in disbelief, her mouth slightly agape in shock. She recognised that voice. Oh how she missed that voice. For a few moments she had brought a hand up to reach out to him, pulling away instead and bringing the hand to her mouth when he blinked.

Biting her lip in a vain attempt to quell the welling up of tears, Lucy finally answered her Father, "I should be asking you the same thing.", her voice cracked slightly, "T-this isn't all in my head, is it?"

Reaching out to lay a hand on the very real shoulder of her previously known to be dead Father, the daughter who had seen hell had dropped all pretenses of aggressive authority or cold cunning. No, right now, a simple daughter had wrapped her arms around her much missed father's waist and buried her head in his chest.

"...Hi Dad..."

The moments of disbelief and shock slowly melted away into confusion and questioning of one's own sanity, and then that finally ebbed away. For Isaac, it was a question of 'How long have I been away?' and 'What happened to her?'. When she moved to hug him, he followed suit, holding her tight against his chest as he was overcome with emotion.

Isaac: I'm so sorry I left you, Lucy... I'm sorry for everything. I know it was my fault. I'm sorry...

Time had moved faster for Isaac than Lucy during the years he was dead. He was not aware of anything between his death and his renewed life, so seeing all of this was a shock to his system, without a doubt.


Ladies and gentlemen, we are back in black!


It's the wild wasteland third anniversary special!

Lucy pawed at her face, wiping the tears of shock and greater happiness away, "You're here now, that's all that matters!", she smiled happily, truly happy, before her head tilted in confusion when she had spotted William as one of the trio of newcomers, "How - how are you here? And why is William with you? What is going on? How many strings has #411 attached to you?"

Confusion, in Lucy's case, was a breeding ground for paranoia and subsequent aggression that followed as a response. Lately, one could describe Lucy as exhausted and dispassionate, yet as of this moment she was ready to launch herself headfirst into any opposition for the safekeeping of her father. And if these were the machinations of the Enclave, she was feeling ready to correct her previous mistake in the following Round 2.

"Point me in the right direction and we will tear them apart!", stated what was once a sweet girl.

Isaac put his hands on her shoulders to get her to pay attention to him for a moment.

Isaac: Lucy, calm down. They're not with the Enclave. In fact, I know for a fact that the one on the end with the glasses is a Scribe from the Brotherhood. This isn't a plot, except perhaps of the BoS to give me my life back. Let me explain what I know.

He told her the moment he became alive again, and what he knew from that, in that it seemed to involve a radioactive coffin and a bunch of armored ghouls, somehow. He didn't understand the process or reasoning of it himself, but he was alive because of this and had some sort of mutation that gave him an affinity for radiation.

Isaac: Really hoping I don't go ghoul because of it, but at least that would be better than dying again.

He continued, explaining how he had to beat the last ghoul standing to death because he wasn't - for whatever reason - Frank Rose. Frank was a Brotherhood man. He'd heard of the Roses before he died, so if he was switched with this man Frank, then they had wanted him alive instead of Frank. While he was explaining this, someone took William and company quietly around the wall perimeter of Megaton. Isaac finished his tale and asked her...

Isaac: Now look, what've the Enclave been doing? I've heard some strange things, some worrying things, and I found a helmet and alot of blood at the house. I'd thought for sure something had happened. In fact, judging from your eye, I guess something did happen. Tell me, Lucy, please...

There were few people that could effectively calm Lucy down when she was about to fly off the handle, then again, there was only one of Isaac Black. Tapping his arms to let him know she was okay, a hand ran through her hair while she took everything in.

"So it's safe to assume that Frank Rose is dead? That's surprising. Can't say I'll miss him, but still, surprising."

Lucy paused to touch on her eyepatch, something which she was growing accustomed to. How was she possibly going to explain this? Might as well start from the beginning. "Look, Dad, the Gauss Rifle Plus..."

Lucy glossed over the details of how she attempted to start a new life in Megaton for a few years before meeting Frank Rose and Vikki the mini-mutant on a small excursion one day. Mentioning her battles alongside the Brotherhood, Lucy revealed the nature of Brotherhood's current standing and the subsequent force of the Enclave attacks headed by two members of the Fallout Sector. What followed was Lucy's short-sighted descent into cunning manipulation and opportunistic goals: Using her standing as unwilling Enclave Asset to accompany FalloutBob to the Vault, the truth revealed with FalloutJack and the final test by Number One. The military might of the current Enclave. Lucy's betrayal to save others over that of her vendetta. The final confrontation with FalloutJack and surrendering of the Gauss Rifle Plus in exchange for a fresh start.

"Things seemed to be looking up from there...I met Kristin, Kristin Blamco, Princess to New Vegas BlamCo itself. She helped me get back home. Not long after that, a longtime friend of yours arrived to find you: Jonathan McKenna."

Lucy then delved into the explanation of the events that followed his arrival. The untimely interruption of #411, her plan to unsuccessfully goad Lucy into another betrayal and ultimately the plan to blackmail her with further deception and use of a presumed-dead Thomas McGee as leverage. Suicidally intent on protecting someone else from getting stuck under the Enclave's thumb, Lucy tried in vain to use personal harm to frame and blackmail #411, hence the loss of an eye, even after the initial replacement. Failing to protect Jonathan's cover identity and causing a mess in the process: Jonathan McKenna & Kristin BlamCo had stepped in to fight against #411's leverage.

"But I think someone else can explain that last part more clearly. Still trying to wrap my head around all of it -- and this.", Lucy nodded over to a shocked Jonathan McKenna not too far off. And again to the Valkyrie that killed armored soldiers with her unique blade. "Jonathan has been waiting a long time to see you as well. He needs some good news - today has been hell for a lot of people."

The mere mention of Jonathan had set Isaac looking around, trying to spot him. When he did...yeah, the man looked like he'd been through what he himself had woken up from: Death. Isaac patted the shoulder of his little girl and stepped on over to Jonathan MCKenna, his old friend.

Isaac: Jon? I'm sorry for being dead. I didn't plan it that way, but I'm here now. What I can do for you?

Given the wayJon's been going, probably a while lot, but would he be able to accept this situation as well as Lucy has? We shall see!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

A collab between Jack and Harkinator now!

Let us take this over to the perspective of those good-deed-doers off to the side now... The three of them - Evan Ramsey, Dudley Sullivan, and William Knight - witnessed a heartwarming moment: A father re-united with his daughter after spending years...well...dead. It brings a tingle to one's own heart. Wait... Hearts don't tingle like that, but all three of their own most certainly are. A Mysterious Stranger in a wide-brimmed hat with a sniper rifle on her back walks by, speaking low.

"If you gentlemen do anything other than follow me, I'll crush them where you stand."

She starts walking around the Megaton perimeter wall. William recognizes the voice. It was FalloutJack's girl, Natsuki Manriki!

Oh crap. Oh crap. Oh crap.

The Three Musketeers knew at once if they didn't want to turn the touching little scene they'd just witnessed into a tragedy they'd follow Natsuki. At least to distract her for the time being. They turned almost in unison and began to follow. William looked at Evan and Dudley, mouthing "Hang back" at both of them and motioning for them to slow down. He was sure it was him Natsuki had singled out. They'd encountered one another before at the Enclave base, though William had been disguised as an Enclave trooper at the time. It wasn't impossible that she'd found out who he was afterwards. William's hands brushed his weapons, seeking reassurance from their presence. This could get nasty. Dudley and Evan did as they were told, dropping back a little so they could make a break for it if they had to, but couldn't be accused of disappearing. By this time the little gathering at the gates was out of their sight as the Three Musketeers made their way round the Megaton wall. Each tensed up with apprehension, something about Natsuki told them she was one of the most dangerous people they'd ever encountered. The other two had indeed hung back, but they could not do so that far. A tingle in their chests got a bit intense for a second and they knew that something was wrong. That something was Natsuki. They were now around the side of the walled city, far enough away that the gates were out of earshot.

Natsuki: I didn't want to spoil that scene back there. I honestly like the Blacks, despite the whole 'trying to betray us to the outside world' thing. And Isaac is alive... I don't even know how to react to that. Seeing you three here, though... That's a no-brainer.

She turned and pulled off her hat, revealing to them the pink-haired young lady with the horns that William, at least, had seen. The other two didn't really know much of anything about her. She looked angry with them, a thus-far controlled military kind of anger that the breaking of discipline from that would surely end in a dangerous situation.

Natsuki: Let me be blunt. We found George's body, we joined the dots, and we know that you - Mr. Knight - infiltrated our base by cutting down a good man. Soldiers may die in battle, but he wasn't even in uniform or armed! You killed him during his coffee break and stuffed him into a vent shaft like he was garbage. Let me tell you something, Knight. I liked George. Good friend, family man, trying really hard to make it into the Fallout Sector. We could've had a FalloutGeorge. I'm not simply pissed because you killed one of our men. I'm within an inch of imploding your heart because of how it happened...!

And before either of the other two could say anything, she gave them a sharp look.

Natsuki: Incidentally, Enclave Asset #1 ratted you two out. We know who you are and we saw what you did. I could probably see my way to killing you as well.

"The other two have done nothing against you, it's me you-" William tried to say before being interrupted by Dudley, who slapped William's arm with the back of his hand.

"Y'aint pulling that one William. No way do we leave ya alone on this. One fer all an' all fer one." He said, puffing out his chest before addressing Natsuki, "Listen Miss Pink Power Ranger, ya gotta problem with one of us, ya mess with all of us."

William and Evan both rolled their eyes at the "Miss Pink Power Ranger" bit. Tact never was Dudley's strong suit.

"I know there's no point trying to make excuses or justify me killing your friend. It was him or me in that moment, and I'm sure he was as nice as you say." Said William, resting his hands on his waist, next to but not quite on his weapons.

"You might think you know everything about us, but you underestimate how dangerous we are. It's three against one, you're outnumbered."

None of the Musketeers could see a clean way out of this. If they ran Natsuki would kill the recently reunited Black family. If they tried to hide they'd spend the rest of their lives on the run from the Enclave. What could they do but fight? Something in their chests tingled, this entire situation felt wrong.

Natsuki: I don't think you understand what's going on here, so let me make them more visible.

A little bit of concentration and that tingle got a bit more obvious...because it was partially based in a sonic vibration that was going on. There were these transparent limbs that...oh. William had seen these before, thanks to the powersuit that he'd been in back at the base. Alice had warned him that Natsuki was dangerous. Evan was shocked, as he had noticed that three of these things were leading into their chests.

Evan: That was you? Who are you? No, what are you? I thought the Enclave didn't like mutants.

Natsuki: I'm a Diclonius, a divergent form human being. And my name is Lieutenant Natsuki Manriki, Enclave army, and I literally hold your lives in my hand. You three have most-definitely taken wanton action against the Enclave, my personal feelings aside. Give me one good reason why I shouldn't kill you all.

Neither William nor Evan could think of a reason. Natsuki literally held their lives in her hands, and they couldn't think of a good reason for her to let them live. She had every reason to kill Willam, and she might as well kill Evan and Dudley while she was at it. To their surprise, it was Dudley who spoke.

"Because I'm holdin' a live grenade here missy."

"What?!"

"What?!"

Dudley extended his arm forwards to show he was indeed holding a grenade tightly in his hand, the pin was at his feet.

"I've taken the pin outta this, and if ya kill me or any of the others this goes off with ya in the blast radius. You kill us, we kill you." For once in his life Dudley looked deadly serious. He was seriously pissed off, and when he got pissed of he got dangerous.

"Ya might be thinkin' ya'll survive the blast, but that merry band out by the gates'll hear it an' come runnin' ta find ya stumblin' around with half a body worth of shrapnel. They'll finish you off good." Dudley's arm shook slightly, and he could almost feel the pressure around his heart tighten.

"We all leave now, go our separate ways. Nobody shoots nobody as they's walkin' away and we all make it outta this alive."

Something Natsuki and the others did not know that Dudley did: The grenade was a dud. There was no real way for any of them to put that to the test without chancing the explosion. Only Dudley knew that it would never come, but he put on an excellent act like he was worried too. Actually, he was worried, but of being discovered maybe... Natsuki blinked at this act of his, but then smirked.

Natsuki: Blowing yourselves up to save yourselves? Hmmm, guess I should've restrained you.

Evan: Well, what's it going to be? I don't like the idea of blowing up either, but if we have to die...

Yes, the Brotherhood may not have been comfortable with self-sacrifice, but they were willing to... She appeared to give this some thought.

Natsuki: I have a counter proposal. The truth is, I could probably reduce you all to giblets and indeed survive the explosion, but I'm gonna take a page from dad's handbook and anty-up. If you walk away from me now, I'm gonna make the Brotherhood hurt. If you want to prevent that from happening, I suggest you go west and look after the Blacks. Those are your conditions now. Go west or test your luck now.

"Then we go west, and we all make it out of this alive." Said Evan, stepping back while keeping his eyes on Natsuki. There was no way he would do anything to endanger the Brotherhood of Steel.

"Yeah, an' you get outta here now too." Said Dudley, taking a step back himself and waving the grenade as if it were a lit torch he was using to fend off the encroaching darkness.

All Three Musketeers backed off, edging their way around the walls of Megaton. In unison they breathed a sigh of relief once they could not see Natsuki, though they did not simply turn around and walk normally. Was that it? Were they in the clear? No. The Enclave knew who they were, recognised them by appearance. That would never be the end of it. For now they'd have to bide their time, look after the Blacks as they'd agreed to do. Another opportunity to strike at the Enclave would present itself in time. Natsuki, meanwhile, headed around the back of Megaton, and made use of the radio in her Pip-Boy.

Natsuki: Dad, are you there? Listen, I have something to tell you, something important...

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

On the other end, FalloutJack had heard the news. He was shocked - Shocked! - to hear that gambling was going on in this establishment to hear that Isaac was somehow alive!. He had to tell Number One about this. And...maybe NOT Bob. Jack operated a secret control in his suit and activated the Secret Inter-Vault Transportational Tube...which only he and Number One ever used. Slipping down, he set it for the secret corridor leading to the secret back door into Number One's room. Once down, Jack exited the tube and walked down the hallway.

He stopped, seeing another guy pop in from yet another doorway!

FalloutJack: #86, what are you doing here? This is an unlisted hall.

#86: I just wanted to pop in and see the Chief about my mission.

FalloutJack: What mission?

#86: Well, that's just it. I haven't got one.

FalloutJack: Well look, not now, alright? I have to talk to him over some serious matters. Say, how are you and #99 doing?

#86: Pretty good, apart from the headaches.

FalloutJack: I told you not to boobytrap your quarters.

#86: Just maintaining the element of surprise.

FalloutJack: Well look, I'll get you a mission and it'll be just brimming with danger. You'll be surrounded by enemies trying to kill you every moment of the day.

#86: And...loving it.

FalloutJack: Now, get out of here. Nobody's suppose to know about this thing.

#86: Are you kidding? The Maintenance Brothers - and the Maintenance Sister - know about this! And if they know...everyone knows.

FalloutJack: Except Bob.

#86: Except Bob.

FalloutJack: See ya, #86.

Jack moved on and entered the domicile of Number One. #86 eventually found the secret panel again and let himself out.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Meanwhile, at a collab between Jack and Eagle...

Questions? Well... After a few moments of silence from Talion as they walked, he said "A few, Soldier. What is your Name? your Rank? and your Serial Number?" Through his helmet it would come off as practiced and forceful, like the tone of an officer. David stopped and looked at him for a moment.

FalloutDavid: Oh, that's wonderful. We're on my base and I'm the one being interrogated.

He sighed, shrugging as he walked along and other soldiers came in a little closer.

FalloutDavid: Alright... We do things a little differently now. I'm David Davidson, Fallout Sector, and I don't have a number anymore. You see, everyone else is a number and I'm one of the exceptionals. It's just that my armor is currently in the shop and I'm doing the casual bit for a while.

He smirked now.

FalloutDavid: How about you, then? It's only fair.

Talion continued walking as he replied "Vague responses for vague responses. Talion Richardson, Marine, and it's been some time since I've bothered to remember my number." He coughed through his helmet before continuing "And you asked if I had questions, I wouldn't have the gall to interrogate you in front of that thing behind us."

FalloutDavid: Too true.

Metal Gear BOX had mysteriously come up north, for reasons he did not know at this time. It was handy, of course. No man in his right mind - which just proves how crazy Frank Rose was - would attack such a machine alone. Just then, one of the Enclave soldiers came over, hefting his plasma rifle. It was a newer design to what Talion was use to seeing.

FalloutDavid: Yes, #337, what is it?

#337: Enclave Asset #1 just reported in. They have FalloutScott.

David blinked, staring at him a moment.

FalloutDavid: Well, how did that happen?

#337: One of the Scribes devised a stun weapon to immobilize powersuits. It must've been pretty good to drop him.

FalloutDavid: Yeah, Scott may spend alot of time drunk, but he's an utter genius.

#337: They have him drunk NOW. They're trying to make him talk.

David snerked.

FalloutDavid: Those poor bastards. Is my replacement suit here?

#337: It's been delivered, yes. Uhh...what do you want done with the prisoner?

FalloutDavid: Him? No idea. He's too strong to chain down. Reminds me of a nicer Horrigan. Although...we could just make it a straight trade, the super cyborg for the super genius. I think we'll wait a while, though, so that Scott has a chance to start singing lymrics.

Talion chuckled slightly "Taking me prisoner and planning to trade me now? I could lie and claim otherwise, but I know nothing of their operations and they know as much about me as you do. I have little value as a prisoner and they have little reason to trade for me."

David chuckled.

FalloutDavid: I think if they've at least met you, they'll help you. And not simply because they're a bunch of nice guys. You're clearly a very-capable person. I'm weighing their ability to recognize that against the fact that Scott will eventually make their lives a living hell. The drunken behavior is only the start. Anyway, I'm sure the Brotherhood will make the right decision. The things we've been leaking to them about situations developing lately should make them far more amicable.

#337: Maybe, maybe not, sir. Scott killed Frank Rose with the MGB. Base came to us with a recording and everything. His own fault, really, but they may not like it.

FalloutDavid: Ah well, we'll just have to see. Ah, you don't mind sitting in view of the MGB, do you, Talion? He's not exactly built for indoors.

"I suppose," Talion replied. "Though if I have to have a gun pointed at my head may I clean my equipment while I wait?"

FalloutDavid: Considering whose guns are doing the pointing? Yeah, sure. Just don't go anywhere. I'm gonna go settle into metal.

He headed off with #337. The MGB continued its eternal stare at the cyborg. It looked somewhat battered, but it was fully-functional and could not be taken down by a single person. They knew this, not only because of common sense, but on the point regarding the death of Frank Rose. Unbeknownst to Talion or anyone else, though, a certain small-scale version of Liberty Prime was traveling north and would find this area soon...

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

At the Citadel, they were having a bit of a problem. Scott had begun singing alright, and it was about the Chinese planning to cover the world in their Red Glow. They had to listen, horrible though his carrying on was. And then, suddenly, he had taken the whiskey bottle jumped into a vent!

FalloutScott: Aye, there's nar'ly a beast which kin outrun a greased Scotsman! Well, maybe that Deathclaw lass, but she's a horse of a different color.

They heard him jabbering on throughout the vents, following him until they reached a locked storeroom In calling for the key, they had the unfortunate problem of having having left him alone in there for a time... They had heard sounds, building sounds! Soon, they opened the door and looked... Scott had jumped back into the vent, and the shelves had nothing on them but little toy RC cars...with grenades!

Toy cars streamed out of there, forcing soldiers to run after them and shoot before they hit something sensitive!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

There comes a time in a man's life where, frankly, he has had enough. First, it was Grendel they had to deal with, then Eddie the bizarre concert-maker, then a frigging ALIEN ESCAPE POD or something flew out of the sky and crashed into the ground! Then another DIFFERENT escape pod crashed into IT! And what do we have now? Grendel, Eddie the Dead, a guy in a pretty bonnet, a naked man, a strange girl, and...is that a little hovering drone nearby?

Joe Slayer: That's it! I'm out! Let's go.

Jonesy: You don't want to figure this out?

Joe Slayer: Does it look like my problem? Let's go find the way out of this world.

Coyote: Good call.

Speck: Hear, hear.

The Shadowrunners are leaving you to your own devices. Number Six, however, remains watchful...

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Meanwhile...closer to the Springvale area, overlooking it from the hill in which Vault 101 sat...a nose sniffed the air in disgust.

"I smell...deathclaw meat."

Malkos of the Goris Clan looked among his fellow Deathclaws, the only one of any true intelligence thus far. They were slow to pick things up, but they had at least taken to his lead. What was the right action here? There was an army in that school...and they were eating his kind. This could not be allowed, but...how to handle it?

"Tonight, I will go alone."

The Wild Wastelands | Outside of Megaton
Introductions and Reunions of the Dead
Thomas "Shifty" McGee and Sylphee Smithford

If this was someone's idea of a joke, it was of rather poor taste but looking at the Former One Eyed Gauss Girl, Thomas could only stand there with his mouth slightly open in disbelief. The dead were supposed to stay dead. That was how it had always been and that how it always should have been and yet, despite hearing of his demise from the very lips that the Former Undertaker had been kissing the previous night, Thomas was witness to a walking, talking and breathing Isaac Black. Strangely enough, Sylphee had stopped moving as well, she knew better than to interrupt a family reunion (for at least five minutes before making herself known).

Was the resurrection of Isaac Black proof of the existence of a high power? Was the fact that he happened to arrive just as Thomas, Lucy, Arizona and Sylphee were about to leave Megaton proof that this higher power directed his Children to be where they were needed most at exactly the time they were needed most? As Thomas pondered these things, Sylphee began moving again after her pea-sized brain finished identifying the relationship that this new person named Isaac Black had with her.

"GAMPA IMAX!!!!" The Blue Haired Air Head exclaimed loudly as she started struggling against her Daddy to get to her newly found "Grandfather."

"No. Stop. Wait. Sylphee. Stop." The Former Undertaker turned Insta-Daddy tried to say as he pressed his hand against the aggressively affectionate Crimson Menace. Sighing internally, Thomas realized that it was once again time for him to sacrifice himself for the greater good. In this case, the reunion between Isaac Black and Jonathan Aristotle McKenna, "Stop it, I want a hug Sylphee."

CR-CR-CR-CR-CRACK!

That was the sound of Thomas' spine being forcefully realigned by his Crimson Chiropractor. The world started to tilt a bit as the Straight Spined, Top Hatted Young Man found his center of gravity moved upwards by a foot or two. Wrapping his arms around the pint sized pain, Thomas gave his Delinquent "Daughter" a hug before looking around and spotting Lucy as she retreated from the conversation between Jonathan and Isaac.

Walking over to the One Eyed Formerly Fatherless Former Gauss Girl, Thomas managed to inhale enough air into his lungs to ask Lucy a question.

"Are you alright?" Thomas asked in the gentlest tone possible, feeling more than slightly self conscious as he addressed the woman that he had and would again sacrifice himself for. Between the fact that he had a fully grown woman latched onto him like a child latching onto her father and the fact that he still had no idea what was going on between Lucy and himself, he felt rather ill at ease.

The Top Hatted Former Undertaker felt his body acclimating to Sylphee's Squeeze of Doom and found that he could talk normally once again.

"I'm glad to see that your Father's alive, Lucy. I'm happy for you. I'm sure that you two have more things to discuss and more to get caught up on." Thomas said in a more relaxed tone, "You know... seeing you and your father together makes me miss my own parents. It's been quite some time since I've sent them a letter. Actually, truth be told, I haven't sent them a letter since I arrived here in D.C..." Pause, Sigh, "Ever since I ran into Frank, it's been a rather busy life filled with misfortune in some parts."

Despite the fact that Frank Rose was an asshole, a cheat, a thief and destroyer of vehicles, he was still a living human being... it was rumored. Thomas kicked at some rocks...

"Although my life hasn't been very fortunate until now, I'm glad if I caught your eye because of that misfortune..." He would have said were it not for the fact that Sylphee had decided to tackle Lucy in a rather dramatic fashion.

"MOMMY LUCY CABOOSY!!!" Sylphee squee'd as she tackled the One Eyed Gauss Girl to the ground squeezing her with all her might like a cursed python squeezing the body of a young unliked girl.


The Wild Wastelands | Springvale Elementary School
Food of the Dead
Constance Sorrowfeld and the Sylphys

"Don't. Do that." Miss Jenna said firmly but quietly to the offending Sylphy that had set the smothered Deathclaw steaks on fire "accidentally on purpose." The effect was instant on the offending Sylphy who decided to duck behind the Unwillingly Chosen Queen of the Syphys, Constance Sorrowfeld.

"Sylphy Sylphy Sylphy!" The Offending Sylphy exclaimed from behind Constance's right leg.

"She said she's sorry." Constance said as she petted the cowering Sylphy, "Besides, it looks like you were able to save the food. It still smells wonderful."

This was partially the truth. Despite the fact that the smothered part of the smother Deathclaw steaks smelled quite delicious, Constance's sensitive nose was still able to detect the subtly foul smell of Deathclaw meat. No matter what how much Deathclaw meat was seasoned, stewed, simmered, saute'd, sauced or steamed it was still Deathclaw meat and inherently tasted like FEV laced Chicken that decided to eat everything in sight.

There were some days that Constance wished for the dry rations that the American Enclave Scouts of America issued their scouts as a snack. Sure they tasted like cardboard and they left an oily residue in your mouth and left you extremely thirsty, but at least they didn't taste like a bird that someone had decided to wear as a shoe before slogging through a manure field.

"I guess it's time to eat." Constance said as she signaled one of the Assistant Sylphys to signal the dinner bell.

DING DING DING DING DING!!

A mass of jabbering and chattering soon followed as the Sylphy horde that had been stationed at Springvale elementary converged and waited for chow. All around her, Constance could hear the murmurs of that day's rumors, specifically about a rather large Deathclaw that was rather clever in avoiding the Sylphy hunting parties. Some even said that it was able to talk. Remembering some of the bed time stories the Scout leaders used to tell about Intelligent Deathclaws, Constance wondered if this was one of their number. If what the Sylphys were yammering about was true, the Deathclaw in question was probably not pleased that the Sylphys had taken to hunting Deathclaws.

"Hey... ummm... Sylphy? Double up on guards tonight." Constance ordered. Not that it would do any good of course. Despite the amount of training that she'd invested in the Sylphys, in the end, they were all still idiots.


The Wild Wastelands | The Enclave Vault
Regrets to the Formerly Dead
Enclave Intelligence Officer #411

The Enclave Maintenance Brothers ... and the Enclave Maintenance sister were busy replacing a monitor inside Intelligence Sector of the Enclave Vault. If there was one thing that never mixed well with electronics, it was the introduction of liquids via a fine mist after being spat out. But this is exactly what had happened when Enclave Intelligence Officer #411 saw the latest Eyebot footage relayed back from Megaton's gates. The return of Isaac Black was something she'd never anticipated.

"Helloooooo Nurse!" Enclave Maintenance Brother #888 called out to the Intelligence Officer.

"I'm not a Nurse." Charlotte Sorrowfeld stated bluntly as she waited for more information to come in about the resurrection and reappearance of Isaac Black. As she waited for the Enclave Maintenance Brothers and their Enclave Maintenance Sister to attempt to replace the monitor for the 3rd time, Enclave Intelligence Officer #209 turned to her companion, Enclave Medical Officer #46.

"What do you make of this? How does someone resurrect a traitor that was confirmed as bring killed years ago?" #411 asked as she picked up a clipboard and reviewed the information attached to it.

Joseph Marlow, the survivor that had been brought in by a Enclave Patrol, was sailing through his training with flying colors. It seemed that when given the opportunity to learn how to kill proficiently, the man had no qualms. Having passed basic power armor courses, they had moved him up to small plasma weapons usage and maintenance.

The other message was less pleasant in nature. It seemed that someone else had been brought in by the Enclave Patrols, one that was known to the Enclave quite well. Given the nature of her crimes, #411 was quite surprised when she'd received a pardon and been assigned to the Intelligence department. It looked like the levels of Bitchiness would be increasing quite a fair amount within a few days time.

Arizona
The Wild Wastelands | The Road To Dunwich | Outside Megaton Gates
"I get to heart of matter, and always interruptions!"

As things turned out, her little band of wasteland misfits weren't ready. Due in no small part thanks to a several new arrivals on motorcycles. The old Ghoul turned at the sound of engines and could scarcely believe what she was seeing and hearing. You hardly ever saw someone get even one of those things working after 200 years of rust, decay and fallout, but here there was trio, driving up and dropping off the three riders and the single passenger. She could recognize one of them having been part of the Brotherhood of Steel at least at some point. Their emblem was too distinctive to be otherwise. One of the other three, however, looked vaguely familiar.

She frowned as she tried to place why, when she saw Lucy turn to look over out of the corner of her eye, and the one-eyed young woman looked like she was seeing a ghost.

"I can see him now."

"See who?" she mouthed as she watched the two move closer to one another.

It looked like they were each shocked to see the other there, and from what she was murmuring, it was clear Lucy didn't know whether or not this was even real. But by the time she captured the man in a hug and buried her face into his chest, Arizona realized why he looked so familiar.

"...Hi Dad..."

She blinked, and looked him over a little more closely, but she didn't make any moves to step into their little moment. It wasn't her place, not then. But she could see the resemblance between the two, and it was pretty clear that this was Black Senior, though his clothes looked tattered and, quite frankly, he looked like a fresh corpse on its feet.

"GAMPA IMAX!!!!"

Arizona's eye widened as she remembered that Sylphee was still present, and started to make a move to stop her from interrupting them. Thankfully, Thomas was already doing the same thing, and was desperately trying to pull her away before subjecting himself to one of her bone crushing hugs to save both Lucy and Isaac. She had to admire the fact that he didn't want anything getting in the way of their reunion. But the sounds his back made still made her wince in sympathy.

As she watched father and daughter reunite and explain everything that had happened to the two of them since the last time they saw one another, she tuned out whatever she could hear. It wasn't her business, and for the most part, she didn't really want to know anyway. However, she did notice the three that rode up with Isaac in tow were being lead away by the very girl that helped defuse the situation in Megaton. She quirked up her brow at that, but otherwise shrugged it off.

By the time the two largely finished catching up, she watched as Thomas, still being slowly squeezed to death by Sylphee, made his way to them.

"I'm glad to see that your Father's alive, Lucy. I'm happy for you. I'm sure that you two have more things to discuss and more to get caught up on. You know... seeing you and your father together makes me miss my own parents. It's been quite some time since I've sent them a letter. Actually, truth be told, I haven't sent them a letter since I arrived here in D.C.. Ever since I ran into Frank, it's been a rather busy life filled with misfortune in some parts."

Arizona stepped up at that point and had to give them both a crooked smile.

"And after meeting me, it looks like that might not be changing too much." she quipped, before offering her good hand to Isaac black, "I'm Arizona. You must be Black Senior, given the reunion between you and Lucy."

"MOMMY LUCY CABOOSY!!!"

"We're going to want to save her from that." she said quickly before turning to try and peel Sylphee off of her.


[ dr. sorenson ]
The Wild Wastelands | Following The Post-Apocalypse | Springvale School
"The taste is fascinating in just how bad it is."

The offending Sylphy quickly cowered behind Constance's leg at the sight of Jenna's angry form, if not her angry visage. When she gabbled back, what she meant was pretty clear even without the translation.

"She said she's sorry. Besides, it looks like you were able to save the food. It still smells wonderful."

There was a moment before Jenna nodded and clapped her hands cheerfully.

"Alright then! Let's get the tables set up!"

It was clear that the young blind woman had the same idea as she got one of the other girls to get everything set up. As the dinner bell rang, Jenna watched in wonder as the horde of clones rushed in for food, and she immediately got to work at getting everyone served with a helping of Smothered Deathclaw. As she did so, she couldn't help but wonder if it would end up turning out. After all, she had never eaten Deathclaw before, much less served it. The optimist in her wondered if it really would be much different from brahmin. The scientist in her, however, knew that it probably tasted very different, and probably should have been prepared differently.

When everyone was seated, Jenna included, the entirety of the Sylphy horde were treated with a unique sight whenever they glanced over at her. After all, given Jenna's attachment to her suit, she was one of the few people in the wasteland who learned the secret of eating through one's helmet. It was a mysterious process, and not many people could pull it off, and if anyone could see the technique to doing it, it was Constance. To everyone else, however, all they saw was Jenna loading up a fork, bringing the bite to where her mouth would have been, and the food... Disappeared without so much as smearing on the dome.

The moment she took the first bite however, she was supremely glad for her helmet. Otherwise, everyone would have been able to see the look of utter revulsion on her face.

It was clear enough then that Deathclaw meat was very different from Brahmin, or even Bighorner. It was a little closer to Bloatfly, but one would argue that Bloatfly meat made for a reasonably decent slider. Deathclaw meat wouldn't. Still, she swallowed valiantly and made a face behind her helmets visor when she overheard Constance.

"Hey... ummm... Sylphy? Double up on guards tonight."

"Is something wrong? Should I be worried?" she asked, looking around and wishing she had her AER9.6 right about then.

The Wild Wastelands | Outside Megaton
"Lovely Lecherous Leech or Kuro Richi"
Sylphee and Thomas "Shifty" McGee

If Missy Arizona Not Old One Not Leather Faced Lady Not Ghoul Whore With The Gun was planning on prying the Blue Eyed, Blue Haired Cherub from Mommy Lucy Caboosy, Missy Arizona Not Old One Not Leather Faced Lady Not Ghoul Whore With The Gun would have to try harder... much much harder. Missy Arizona Not Old One Not Leather Faced Lady Not Ghoul Whore With The Gun might have wanted to try wedging a hydraulic jack between Sylphee and Mommy Lucy Caboosy or surgically removing Sylphee's arms using the jaws of life. Even when Daddy attempted to help Missy Arizona Not Old One Not Leather Faced Lady Not Ghoul Whore With The Gun keep Sylphee from merging with Mommy Lucy Caboosy at the subatomic level both found it impossible to even stick a playing card between Mommy Lucy Casboosy and her Assailant the two hugging women.

"Sylphee, would you please let go of... um... Sissy Mommy Lucy Caboosy... please?" Daddy asked nicely as he pulled on Sylphee's legs but found himself dragging both Mommy Lucy Caboosy and Sylphee instead of just Sylphee. Dropping the Red Menace's legs, Daddy sighed in a rather frustrated manner, as if he didn't like the fact that Sylphee was bonding with her Mommy Lucy Caboosy. This was how mothers and daughters bonded... well one of the ways. Sylphee was much too old for the other way which would have involved stripping off some of Mommy Lucy Caboosy's c...

"Sylphee, you're going to hurt your Sissy Mommy Lucy Caboosy very badly if you don't stop hugging the air out of her." Daddy pleaded once again as he managed to wiggle his fingers between Mommy Lucy Caboosy and Sylphee's chests in an area that caused the Crimson Catastrophe to turn rather... crimson in the face.

WHIISSSSSSH!! CRACK! TH-THUD!

That sound was the sound of Daddy flying after one of Sylphee's fists went rogue and backhanded him across the face. Sylphee was rather oblivious of what she had done, of course. Given that she hadn't seen who it was that had fondled her small but developing chest, she had lashed out blindly.

"HEY! HEY! HEY! NO TOUCHY!" The Infringed Upon Red Menace exclaimed loudly as she looked around for the infringer.

"ow." Daddy ow'd as he found himself several feet from where he'd been standing and attempting to pull Sylphee from Mommy Lucy Caboosy. Laying there, Daddy rubbed the side of his face before wondering why it was that his head hurt but not his butt or the back of his head... that's when he realized that he'd landed on something sorta soft.

"Squishy Squishy"

Looking behind him, Daddy realized that he hadn't landed on the ground but rather on top of Missy Arizona Not Old One Not Leather Faced Lady Not Ghoul Whore With The Gun.

"Squishy Squishy"

"Daddy! NO TOUCHY!!" Sylphee exclaimed loudly as she pointed at her Daddy-turned-Random-Groper-of-Girl-Chests.


The Wild Wastelands | Springvale Elementary
"Double the Guards? Try a Triple!"
Constance Sorrowfeld

"Is something wrong? Should I be worried?" Miss Jenna asked as she made more food disappear through her mask. The was a slight amount of worry in her voice that Constance could detect.

"No. Nothing to worry about, Miss Jenna." The Cat Eared American Enclave Scout of America shook her head emphatically as not to worry their guest. As of right now it was just a rumor that was being spread among the members of the hunter Sylphys there was no reason to give it any credit. From what Constance had heard from the American Enclave Scouts of America Troop Leaders, the Intelligent Deathclaws were no longer around. They'd been wiped out. Extinct. Gone the way of the Hippo and Whales.

But if there was an Intelligent Deathclaw out there, Constance hoped that she'd be the one to find it and capture it and talk to it. If anything they could get the Deathclaw's assistance on finding something more palatable than Deathclaw meat. If the thing did try to attack the camp, Constance would defend her troopers with everything she had.

"Just a few strange rumors is all. These Sylphys get spooked pretty easily." Constance added, "Next thing you know they'll be talking about how there's a White Land Whale out there that needs to be killed. I just doubled the guards just in case. You never know if there could be some truth to the rumors. Besides, if we don't give them something to do, next thing you know they'll be invading Megaton."

"SYLPHY! SYLPHY! SYLPHY!" The Sylphys exclaimed loudly as they started to grab their weapons.

"NO NO NO NO NO! We're not invading Megaton!" The Queen of the Sylphys screamed loudly.

"SYLPHYYYYY!" The Sylphys responded in a rather disappointed tone as they got back into their seats and continued eating rather enthusiastically.

Unable to continue her meal, Constance pushed her plate forward and pulled out a pouch from her pack. Opening it, there was a sizzling sound as the air hit a heating element and started warming up the Brahmin Stew inside.

"So, Miss Jenna, we'll give you access to the library but I don't know what you'll expect to find. From what I see, the last bunch of Raider Scum that lived here decided to use the books as toilet wipes. No to mention the fact that there was a Giant Ant nest underneath the building that needed to be collapsed."

This was sort of a hint that Miss Jenna should probably abandon the thought of looking through the books and getting on her way. If the books were destroyed, there would be no reason for her to stay, right? The Cat Ears on top of Constance's head twisted as to give the Cat Eared Shotgun Wielding Acrobat a view of Miss Jenna's "face."


The Wild Wastelands | Outside Smith Casey's Garage
"Lost Again..."
Enclave Heavy Weapons Specialist #209

In another world (called Pandora) what was occurring in front of the ruins of Smith Casey's Garage would have been called a Truxican Standoff, a really really REALLY weird Truxican Standoff. We had a semi-naked Charlie Cannon, a fully clothed Eddie the Dead, a semi-conscious Trixie and a fully naked Enclave Heavy Weapons Specialist #209. You might be wondering why the Enclave Heavy Weapons Specialist was naked and I, my dear reader would call you a pervert for wondering such things. Lets just say a giant Magnetic Acceleration Ring is not too friendly when it comes to Metal Power Armor. It's like being shoved into an MRI while wearing Tin-Foil underpants. Fortunately for the Enclave Dominator, his armor was scattered about the interior of the Escape Pod. Unfortunately for the Enclave Dominator, the Escape Pod was resting on top of another more alien looking escape pod.

The way he saw it, E.D. #209 needed to arm himself with something, anything. Letting his gaze wander about, resting on Trixie's butt for a moment before wandering around some more, his eyes finally came to rest on a Rusty Wrench. It wasn't the wrench that would have made a good weapon however, wrenches were women weapons in the world of tools for weapons. It was the car bumper that the rusty wrench was resting on that caught the Enclave Dominator's attention. The Heavily modified Chryslus had once been black with red flames but was now a rusty brown color. Reaching down, the giant wrapped his muscular fingers around the bumper. Grunting, the Enclave Heavy Weapons Specialist pulled on the bumper with all his might... which might have been too much since the bumper was only barely held onto the car by the thinnest of corroded metals.

With his balance lost, the Enclave Soldier found himself falling backwards into the Alien Looking Escape Pod, jostling it and causing the extraterrestrial metal to groan as the Evil Escape Pod shifted a bit. Staying absolutely still, E.D. #209 waited to see if the Evil Escape Pod was going to fall on him. It did not. Instead something broke off of the Evil Escape Pod and landed on hit head.

CLANNNNNG!!!!

"ow." E.D. #209 ow'd as he rubbed the top of his head, his eyes looking at the little robotic looking ball that rolled around on ground at Trixie's feet.

The Three (relieved) Musketeers.

After their close encounter with Natsuki the Three Musketeers made their way back to Megaton's gates where the group was still gathered. As they rounded the last corner it appeared that Sylph was giving Lucy Black the hug of her life while Shifty tried to separate them, he wasn't succeeding. William couldn't help but smile at Sylph, he'd become quite fond of her in the short time they'd known each other.

Dudley's attention was taken by someone else though. Standing away from the commotion and nearer to Isaac was the most... perfect ghoulette he'd ever laid eyes on. While Evan and William had stopped walking once they'd got back to the gates Dudley kept right on walking. As he did, he licked his lips and slicked his blonde hair back before selecting his chatup line of choice. The other two Musketeers noticed what was happening far too late...

"Hey there little missy, yah just about the cutest ghoulette I ever seen in this whole wasteland. What say you tell me ya name?" She reminded him of his Ghoul sweetheart back home, though all ghoul women reminded him of his sweetheart.

Watching this unfold, William put on his best David Attenborough voice, "And here we see the Biggus Blonus Dudlinium in it's natural habitat, embarrassing itself in social situations. Watch as it approaches a Ghoulius Feminius, full of swagger. The Dudlinium makes the first moves of the mating process, but all it will take is one rejection from this Ghoul to prove the wasteland a harsh and unforgiving place..."

"Why are you doing that voice, where did you even learn that?" Asked Evan, who was intending to do his own "Sports Commentator" narration depending if Dudley succeeded or failed.

"Dunno, it just felt appropriate."

Keira "Shield-maiden" Blamco|| Travelling from New Vegas to Megaton
"Feathered Gifts From Fellow Ravens"

Keira Blamco's identity was not something that she could successfully hide, not with the notorious departure of her eldest sister, Kristin Blamco, following her unhappiness with New Vegas. In glorious hindsight it was perhaps not the smartest idea to hijack and blackmail an unsuspecting caravan driver if she, her sisters and the BlamCo legacy was so often in the public eye.

Impatient times called for reckless measures and regarding Keira, one thing will always remain certain: there is much more than meets the eye.

The caravan driver's revolver was resting in Keira's lap while she tapped away at the Pip-Boy on her wrist.

"Tell me, Mister...?", Keira inquired without lifting her head.

"Olivier. James Olivier.", the caravan driver sputtered nervously, "Please -- "

"Oh please. You are certainly not in any danger if you merely cooperate.", Peering over the rim of her glasses, an annoyed look was directed towards James, "Now tell me, this is your family, correct?"

Eyes wide with panic, James clenched his jaw and turned to face the Pip-Boy screen that was being shoved into his face. Sure enough, a short video clip of his wife and daughter was presented, smiling and waving at the camera. The family appeared to overjoyed at something. Their words were silent since the video was muted, but their bedtime clothing and the timestamp on the video was consistent with what the man had seen mere hours before he had decided to leave for work.

"Where are they!? Wh-what have you done!?"

"They are safe for the time being, provided that you simply do as you were told -- and that is to drive the caravan to my destination at an acceptable rate. No questions, no fuss."

"Please -- please leave them out of this!"

"Your family's collective future is in your hands now. I realise that this must seem difficult.", laying a hand on his shoulder, Keira attempted to convey her own version of heartfelt sympathy. Trouble was, her expression had remained unconvincingly critical. "Now don't attempt to rush either, you are carrying explosives as cargo."

"You did not tell me that!"

"I didn't? Oh dear, my mind must be elsewhe --- "

---

A few continuous beeps on her Pip-Boy had signalled a video transmission. Tapping the screen and upping the dial on the volume, Keira answered the call from a fellow female. "Any news?"

"Everything is a-okay on this end! Do you need to switch soon?"

"No no, that won't be necessary. Seems like we have a winner. Is the new family settling in alright?"

"Ehh, they're rightfully confused and they have a lot of questions for the man you're sitting next to. But no complaints.", a small giggle could be heard, "Did you tell him at least?"

"And compromise the results of the test? Come now, you know me better than that."

Another giggle could be heard, "You're cruel, you know that? Any changes to the plan from here?"

"You may proceed. You have 15 minutes or else you're excluded from the trip."

---

Tapping at the Pip-Boy to end the call, a bead of sweat cascaded down the caravan driver's forehead, Keira had remained silent while she continued tapping at the screen.

"James Olivier...", Keira started, reciting the influx of text being displayed on her wrist. "Small family. Recently left the Follower's of The Apocalypse. Eight years of honest service. Worked exclusively with phobias and rehabilitation regarding victims of animal attacks in the wasteland. Interesting...now what made you choose a career in travel and trade, hmm?"

"What is this?! A job interview?, James demanded.

Smirking behind her hood, Keira replied with a casual pointing of the finger towards the approach of a small stampede.

Twenty-seven horses, or "Nightmares" as they have come to be known, were fast approaching the caravan. Complete with a formation and a leader clad in silver-dyed combat armor and a deep blue cloak. A deadly-looking Power Spear was raised and pointed forward when a few stragglers had suddenly broken off from the formation. Skin of snow was revealed when the female warrior ripped off her hood to address those that remained.

"You cowards! Reform your ranks at once!"

The leader's skeletal mount came to a rest alongside the caravan. Keira tugged at her own hood and unclipped the emerald green cloak to stand up and extend a hand of greetings to the leader. Beneath the cloak had revealed the symbolic silver-dyed combat armor with decorative plate reinforcements, long golden hair and a fair-skinned complexion. Unlike Kristin's loose and free-flowing hairstyle, Keira wore her hair tied-up into a stict bun, meanwhile the woman on the horse had worn hers in a single over-the-shoulder braid.

"How very Valkyrian of you, dear sister.", the smirking Keira remarked, "Still training to the last minute, I see?"

"Ha! You flatter me, you must be in a rare good mood.", the spear-bearing Swan-Maiden replied, "And of course, they need regular exercise. We will be travelling for awhile after all."

"Indeed, but do not forget -- we are travelling for a variety of reasons. This won't be just a simple delivery. We find our sister and retrieve the Grand BlamCo Family Recipe Book...with force --"

" -- or persuasion.", Swan-Maiden dismissively finished the sentence. She was not in favour of endangering the eldest sister's life any further. "She must have had a good reason for why she left."

"I KNOW YOU TWO!", the forgotten caravan driver shouted as her pointed at the two sisters.

The Swan-Maiden nodded respectfully and gracefully rested her power spear on her shoulder, "Sable Blamco -- Swan-Maiden of the BlamCo family."

Keira turned, "Yes, Keira Blamco -- Shield-Maiden of the BlamCo family.", and smiled devilishly, "My most sincere apologies for the cloak-and-dagger routine, Mr Olivier.", something about the grin indicated that she was enjoying this on some level, "We had to be absolutely sure that you were a man not only of your word, but deserving as well. In light of your past dedication to our friends, The Followers, we don't think that a man with your particular set of talents should go waste as a mere caravan driver. So what does this all mean? We hear from your family, in your new home by the way, that you always wanted to own a farm. How does the local New Vegas BlamCo farm manager sound to you?"

"I - "

"Of course, a sign-on bonus of ten thousand caps is all yours. Not to mention a dental plan and paid schooling for your younger daughter."

"This...really was a job interview? Are you serious?"

"We take employment very seriously, Mr Olivier.", Keira extended her hand and was met with a vigorous handshake followed by some relieved weeping, "Welcome to BlamCo."

Sable made a few gestures to the remaining horseman upon witnessing the successful hire of a new employee. Time passed and the caravan was emptied of all belongings that did not belong to the sisters. With enough space for a Nightmare to sleep in the back and take the majority of the space, Sable sat alongside her sister and seized control of the Nightmare-driven caravan.

After watching the group of riders safely depart, Sable turned to the second eldest of her sisters, Keira Blamco. "Our sister is vulnerable without her plumage. Shall we see to our delivery?"

Keira simply nodded and went back to tapping away on her Pip-Boy.

"I am tracking the book as we speak..."


Kristin "Battle-maiden" Blamco || Outside Megaton
"Squeaky Clean"

In the midst of all these miraculous revelations and further developments, where would one find Kristin Blamco? Why in the middle of it all, taking a shower no less. Yes, that's correct! The Proud Princess had stripped down to her most basic of undergarments, wetted a hand cloth and had started to give herself something of a sponge bath with the small reservoir of bottled water that she carried.

Now don't get the wrong idea about the Heiress of Dairy, for it was becoming increasingly clear that she was quite possibly the most rational person of those around her! Ask yourself: What would you do after a glorious battle?
Stand around and mope? Haggle for payment? Hit your head and regress to a child-like state to deal with the horrible trauma wrought by your mere existence? Wish upon a star for the resurrection of a loved one?

You would tend to your wounds, get yourself cleaned up, and finally celebrate over a hearty meal and a horn of mead! That's what you should be doing!

So while it was true that Kristin was surrounded by people that were not paying attention, it could also be considered a matter of perspective that she was also equally alone as well. With lengthy conversations drowned out by the soap in her ear, the battle-ready beauty doused her body in slow-motion in water and proceeded to towel-dry her hair.

Still feeling worn out from the physical exertion, at least the scent of exotic fruit now followed the BlamCo Princess while she sprinkled baby powder inside her armour, allowing it to breath while she tapped her foot for a minute before getting back into her usual attire.

Allowing her hair to dry naturally, Kristin looked around to see if she had gotten any odd looks, none that she was aware of at least. Her Pugilist was still standing some distance away, engaged in a conversation with a newcomer, she wondered who he was. Even further away, a group of more newcomers had arrived, one of the men being rather handsome even if he did carry such a small blade, she wondered if he would have a sparring session with her. Finally, her dearest Huntress had lazily wrestled Miss Black into submission while a tall fellow and a lactose-intolerant had started star-gazing a little too early.

With a blade on her back, Kristin proceeded to step towards the odd-behaving Huntress before stopping in her tracks to listen to the fractured english and child-like demeanour. What in the world had become of her rival, the ferocious berserker!?

Truly a tower of a woman, the Gouda Goddess grabbed Thomas & Arizona by the collar and lifted them off the ground in each hand before placing them on their feet. Without missing a beat, the BlamCo Heiress looked between the two servants to the Crimson Queen, unnervingly bewildered and a touch concerned at her very first witness of Sylph's dramatic change.

"Did I perhaps hit her in the head too hard?"

It should be amusingly noted that Thomas was one of very few men that had matched her height at eye level.


Lucy Black || Outside Megaton
"Dear Diary: Dad came back from the dead today. Kay. #NeedTherapy."

Lucy wanted to say many things to many different people. Off the top of her head, she wanted to thank Arizona for being so patient and understanding despite only having something of a 5 minute conversation. She wanted to apologise to and thank Kristin after hearing how she had stepped in to see to the future care of an army of cloned Sylph's. She wanted to respond to Thomas with tact and nuance, perhaps finding a way to express how she was feeling at the moment. Hell, with the reappearance of Sylphee, even Lucy was happy to see the chaotic side of the Crimson Catastrophe once more. Lucy even had a hug prepared and everything!

So where do we go from here?
How do we start this new chapter in Lucy Black's life where things were finally looking up for her?

With a few words and a humble beginning:

"Mmmmpphhffff! Syymmmphhheeee!", Lucy's muffled mumbled grew louder when Sylph decided to wrap her legs around the Lucy's upper body, "Syyymmppphhhheeee! Yoooooffff! Kifffffingggg! Meeeee!!!"

A few mumbled words.
And a humble beginning buried in Sylph's bosom.

It could be worse, Lucy's neck would have snapped in Kristin's...large tracts of land.

The Wild Wastelands | Megaton Gates
"Ghoulish Gazongas, BlamCo Berserkers and Explanations"
Thomas "Shifty" McGee

Terror filled. Violent. Painful. Embarrassing. Confusing. Five of the most prevalent adjectives that could be used to describe the day that Thomas "Shifty" McGee and company had chosen to leave the Wasteland metropolis known as Megaton. All this and they had only made it as far as the Town Gates. Between a violent and murderous mob, a pained face and a confusing reunion with a man that could only be identified as Lucy Black's supposedly long dead father, Thomas was in the throws of having a steaming pile of embarrassment heaped upon him.

*Squishy Squishy*

The Overly Friendly Former Undertaker hadn't quite identified what it was that his hand had been squeezing. To him, it felt something like an over ripe punga fruit that had been filled with sand and left out in the sun to dry for a time. To him, it felt like a mole rat had died and sat unmolested in the Wasteland sun, its body bloating as gasses filled the corpse. To him, it felt like a Super Mutant had taken one of its gore bags and filled it with Mirelurk eggs. It felt like a ghoul's breast.

*Squishy ... Squishy?*

Turning around, the Dapperly Dressed Former Grave Digger was hit full in the face by a steaming, stinking, filthy shovel load of embarrassment. Now, were he Dudley or the as of yet unmet Eddie the Dead, Thomas might have made a rather lewd remark about continuing this little party over yonder but he was neither of these two. He was Thomas, Thomas the man who had once called Arizona not by her name but by the monikers "Old One" and "Ancient One." He was Thomas, Thomas the man whose family thought that Ghouls were to be revered as they carried with them the fragments of Pre-War knowledge that would one day help end the calamity the world found itself in.

"I... I... I... Ummmm... It was... I..." The normally Well Mannered Former Mortician managed to stammer as he went into full retreat from Arizona's menacing grin that was plastered upon her visage, "It was... it was... I... didn't mean..."

Whether it was through sheer luck, an act of Holiest Walt or just well timed choreography, Thomas managed to worm his way out of the situation through the unlikely assistance of the other religious nutjob not named Thomas, Kristin Blamco. Though truth be told, assistance might have been giving the Bumper Sword Brandisher too much credit. Were Thomas not already in a stunned state, Kristin's act of hauling Thomas and Arizona to their feet might have resulted in whiplash. Instead, it only resulted in the Friendly Former Undertaker feeling rather light headed from being made to stand too quickly. The edges of the world threatened to collapse upon Thomas for a moment before the blood rushed back into the man's brain.

"Did I perhaps hit her in the head too hard?" The Blamco Berserker asked as she tilted her head in the direction of Sylphee who was still attempting to squeeze the last ounces of life from the body of Lucy Black, Sylphee's "mother" and Thomas' lover (?).

"What?" The Tall and Pale Former Assassin blurted out in a moment of confusion before realizing that this was the Macaroni Martyr's first encounter with Sylphee, "Oh... no. You didn't do anything to her. She's already a little ... off in the head. Short version of the story: My-brother-Henry-created-Sylph-to-be-both-a-companion-and-a-bodyguard. To-do-this-he-implanted-a-pair-of-personalities-into-one-body. One-is-the-murderous-half-that-you-met-back-inside-the-Gates, Sylph. The-other-is-the-one-currently-attempting-to-murder-the-love-of-my-life."

Thomas ceased the machine gun salvo of words that he'd unleashed on the Guardian of Gouda. Did he just really say that? Why did he just admit that to a woman that he had only met less than an hour ago? It's not he was some sort of tour guide responsible for telling her the ins and outs of living in the D.C. Wastelands...

"Now. If you'll excuse me. I've gotta go... yeah... gotta go." Thomas said as he rushed to assist Lucy.


The Wild Wastelands | Megaton Gates
"Reunions... of sorts."
Sylphee

The reunion was long and heartfelt. Sylphee pressed Mommy Lucy Caboosy's face into her chest with the intention to never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever let her go. Even Daddy's impromptu chest grabbing couldn't ruin the moment for the Blue Haired Bad Luck Charm. To the best of Sylphee's recollections, she'd never had a Mommy before... well... she had to have had a mommy, that's where Baby Sylphee came from, right? But to finally have one was something that made the Red Menace practically squee for joy.

As the joyful meeting continued, Mommy Lucy Caboosy tried to say something through Sylphee's sternum.

"Mmmmpphhffff! Syymmmphhheeee!", Mommy Lucy Caboody's muffled mumbled grew louder when Sylphee decided to wrap her legs around her Mommy's upper body, "Syyymmppphhhheeee! Yoooooffff! Kifffffingggg! Meeeee!!!"

Now it could be that Mommy Lucy Caboosy was attempting to say: "Mmmmmmm! Sylphee! Sylphee! You're killing me!"

But... That's not exactly how Sylphee heard it.

"I love you too, Mommy Lucy Caboosy!" Sylphee said enthusiastically as she squeezed Mommy Lucy Caboosy's skull even tighter... was that even possible? At a certain pressure they should have fused and started some sort of fusion process that generated a new star right in front of the Megatonian Gates. Fortunately for Mommy Lucy Caboosy, Daddy stepped in.

"Sylphee!" Daddy Hentai-Chan's stern voice came from behind her, as he moved in slow and deliberately loud steps to ensure that the Love Killer was aware of his position at all times. He sounded rather nervous, like he was dealing with some sort of venomous insect, which he was.

Enter our hero, Mister Pinchy, the Stingerless Rad Scorpion and pet to both Sylphee and Sylph. Mister Pinchy didn't exactly like being held aloft by his stump of a tail. It made him feel inadequate, sort of like what happens when you go to the bathroom and the urinal next to you happens to be Ghouly Peter North. That's how Mister Pinchy felt. If he was human he'd probably drive around in a large lifted monster truck with a gun rack. Unfortunately for him, he was simply a Rad Scorpion and would have to content himself with attempting to remove Daddy's nose from his face with his pinchers.

"Sylphee. Mister Pinchy needs to eat!" Daddy said sternly once again, reminding Sylphee that even if she was just an overgrown child, she still had responsibilities.

"Okay, Daddy!" Sylphee said with a groan as she released Mommy Lucy Caboosy from her fleshy tomb. Skipping over to where Daddy stood, Sylphee plucked Mister Pinchy from daddy's grasp and went to look for bugs, mole rats or baby mirelurks to feed Mister Pinchy.

Watching Sylphee skip from spot to spot to spot to spot to spot to spot to spot to spot to spot to spot to spot... you get the idea... Daddy helped Mommy Lucy Caboosy up to her feet and gave her a moment to remember how to breathe.

"You okay, Lucy?" Daddy asked, his voice filled with concern.

Arizona
The Wild Wastelands | The Road To Dunwich | Outside Megaton Gates
"A good menacing grin takes practice. After a century or two, I can safely say I've got a good one."

The last time Arizona had tried to pry Sylphee off of someone while she was in the middle of one of her bone-crushing hugs, it had taken two, very determined people. This time, however, she simply wasn't letting go. And really, it made no logical sense to the Old Ghoul. The girl was practically a stick figure, and barely an adult as far as she was concerned. And yet, she had more strength than ten other girls her size when it came to bear hugs.

So, while she tried to pull apart the Red Menace's arms from Lucy's neck, Thomas tried to go for a different approach. Arizona spared a glance before pulling back to see whether or not it would work with an amused smirk. For a moment, she even thought it had, since Sylphee had practically leaped away from the other one-eyed member of their group, only to backhand Thomas. Right into Arizona herself.

"HEY! HEY! HEY! NO TOUCHY!"

As the two of them sprawled on the ground, Arizona groaned softly as she reached up to rub the back of her head, but a subtle but insistent pressure on her chest made her freeze. Slowly, deliberately, she look the time to look down at Thomas as one of his hands squeezed one of her breasts.

A variety of different emotions ran through her in an instant as she tried to decide which to go with: From vague embarrassment, to minor arousal before finally settling on moderate irritation. After all, it was the the most familiar to her out of the three. The result was the Ghoulish Freelancer baring her teeth in what some would have loosely called a smile, even though there was nothing friendly about it.

"I... I... I... Ummmm... It was... I... It was... it was... I... didn't mean..."

"Get. Off. Of me." she ground out between clenched teeth.

But before he could, the two of them were hoisted to their feet by the helpful Tits McHugeKnockers. As the two of them spoke regarding Sylphee, Arizona stepped away as she brushed the wasteland dirt off of herself. She would have been perfectly content to leave it at that and simply rejoin Lucy and her father, only to be interrupted by who she recognized as one of his companions.

"Hey there little missy, yah just about the cutest ghoulette I ever seen in this whole wasteland. What say you tell me ya name?"

Under other circumstances, she probably would have laughed the pick-up line off. But given the day that she had, she wasn't having any of it. Turning to face the man properly, she leveled an intense death glare at him. Much like her menacing grin, she had cultivated a good glare over the years, and some people had a theory as to why it was so potent: Due to the fact that she only had the one eye left, it ended up intensifying the hate energy into a single, powerful glare beam.

Whether that theory had any weight or not, she paired her death glare with a twisted snarl.

"You want my name? Alright then. It's 'Fuck You'. That's Eff-You-See-Kay, capital Why-Oh-You. Fuck you. That's my name." she spelled out before barking, "Now I'm not in the mood, shitbird, so hit the fucking road!"


[ dr. sorenson ]
The Wild Wastelands | Following The Post-Apocalypse | Springvale School
"There wasn't a single part of what you said that made me worry any less."

Constance mentioning that the Sylphy guard ought to be doubled was enough to make Jenna's budding senses for danger to prickle. In fact, it was a combination of that, and the Smothered Deathclaw Steak that threatened to come back up on her that made her swallow audibly.

"No. Nothing to worry about, Miss Jenna."

The blind young woman shook her head vigorously in an attempt to reassure the tall Followers Doctor.

"Just a few strange rumors is all. These Sylphys get spooked pretty easily. Next thing you know they'll be talking about how there's a White Land Whale out there that needs to be killed. I just doubled the guards just in case. You never know if there could be some truth to the rumors. Besides, if we don't give them something to do, next thing you know they'll be invading Megaton."

At the mention of an invasion, the Sylphy's sitting at the cafeteria tables were suddenly brandishing their weapons, and it was abrupt enough to make the Doctor flinch. She could only exhale a sigh of relief when Constance told them firmly that no, Megaton wasn't going to be invaded anytime soon. The clones were clearly disappointed at that, but nonetheless went back to eating. Satisfied with that, Constance turned back to her, all the while pulling out what she recognized as a ration packet. Jenna couldn't blame her, really. Deathclaw meat simply tasted wretched, and she was pretty sure that even buzzards wouldn't have Deathclaw as one of their first choices for a carcass to pick at.

"So, Miss Jenna, we'll give you access to the library but I don't know what you'll expect to find. From what I see, the last bunch of Raider Scum that lived here decided to use the books as toilet wipes. No to mention the fact that there was a Giant Ant nest underneath the building that needed to be collapsed."

The Follower in her immediately felt an intense stab of despair at the mention of books being used for toilet tissue. Those books were the remnants of the Old World before the War! Any intact book was priceless for the knowledge and history that they preserved! Even fiction had value if only for the escape it offered from the bleak and unforgiving wastelands.

Shaking her head, she groaned. It was to be expected of Raiders though. They didn't care about the preservation of history or knowledge. They only cared about taking everything they could, and screw everyone else.

"What a terrible waste." she said finally, "Still, I'd like to do what I can to help before moving onto Megaton."

There was a moment before she teased, "Besides, I'd rather not be there just yet if you change your mind about that invasion."

The Three Musketeers: A shoulder to cry on.

"AWWW NO! Our boy has struck out!" Cried Evan upon seeing Dudley's swift and brutal rejection.

"Thus rejected by his potential mate, The Dudlinium makes an exit, heart crushed." Narrated William as Dudley looked down at his feet and shuffled away from Arizona. There would be other opportunities for him to try again, but right now he felt crushed. Dudley shuffled over to them and buried his head on Evan's shoulder, letting out a single mournful sob as he did so.

"Do you even wash Dudley? Ugh."

"She doesn't mean it mate, just having a bad day. It's not every day you witness a heartfelt reunion, several fights, stressful conflicts, and getting knocked over and having your boobs squeezed by... that guy." William would have to learn a few new names at this rate, "Actually, that's happened a lot more in the past week or two than it ever has in my life. There might be a correlation."

"What, you've had your boobs squeezed a lot in the past couple of weeks?" Said Evan, voice slightly muffled behind Dudley. He dropped his shoulder a little and lowered Dudley to the ground, who sat cross legged like a child on the naughty step.

"No, I was referring to weird shit in general. You might notice a major increase in weird shit happening when you're around this lot. Some people are a magnet for that kind of thing and I'm looking at a whole collection right now."

"You've got a point. Like why are her breasts so big? Why has that one only got one eye? What's with the crazy blue haired girl? What's with the crazy PINK haired girl? Why do they have a radscorpion? Why does that guy look like an undertaker? Why did we meet somebody who came back from the dead like it was a completely normal thing to do?" Asked Evan in quick succession, it suddenly dawning on him just how weird things had become.

"After a while, you just stop asking these questions. Go with it, you'll either have the time of your life or end up dead in a really stupid way. Whatever happens, it won't be boring." Said William matter-of-factly. He patted Evan on the arm, "Come on, let's introduce ourselves."

"Wait fer me guys!"

Lucy Black || Outside Megaton Gates
"The Girl With Passion Scorched Wings Must Finally Walk Away"

("Where does I even go from here? How do I proceed? Why have I fought? Can I make this choice?")

Lucy Black, the formerly flawed gauss rifle gunslinger, was fraught with worry and not jubilation as one would come to expect from someone reunited with a previously-deceased relative. Now it would be unfair to peg herself as ungrateful, no, the return of her father had complicated matters, to say the least. Matters pertaining to the heart to be exact, for upon discovering that the Brotherhood was tied to her father's resurrection, the former sniper had to say goodbye to Thomas, Sylph & Arizona.

"You okay, Lucy?", Thomas 'Shifty' McGee spoke nearby.

With a heavy heart, Lucy picked herself off of the ground and with her back turned to Thomas, she ran a hand through her hair and sighed. "Not entirely", she replied, sounding disheartened, "The Brotherhood has something to do with Isaac's return. I need to be with him and get some answers. You know how I can get when I want to know something.", a brief smirk emerged, betrayed by a downcast look, it quickly vanished. "This puts a dent in our plans -- together", Lucy regretfully admitted.

Taking a few steps forward, Lucy laid her hands flat on Thomas' chest and stood on her toes to kiss him tenderly. Breaking away and hugging him around the waist, Lucy looked up at Thomas with intensified determination in her eye, "For now. This time it willonly be temporary! You hear me? No dying this time, fake or otherwise, I forbid you.", Lucy attempted to mockingly deride him in spite of her growing reluctance to leave him, "You do your thing. I have to go mend a few fences at the Brotherhood, find out why they kept my dad from me, or burn the place to the ground -- depending on my mood."

After another kiss, longer this time, Lucy broke away while still clasping his hands, "Rivet City, Megaton, Springvale and the Citadel. Places where I'd most likely be.", one hand fell to her side, "Take care of my Sylphy. And look out for Arizona while I'm gone."

Lucy released her remaining hand from his grip and looked him in the eye, without batting an eye, she simply stated in her own fearless Lucy-like way, "I love you, Thomas Shifty McGee.", hurriedly stepping forward to kiss him once more, she broke away for good, winked (as best as a one-eyed girl could) and smiled, "In no uncertain terms."

Turning on her heel, Lucy regarded Sylphy for a moment. Getting on her knees, Lucy wrapped her arms around the Crimson Menace. This version of Sylph seemed to have a greater recollection of Lucy and wasn't fighting every impulse to slaughter the former 'sister'.

"Believe it or not, Sylphy. But I can't be your Mommy, y'know why? Because we're sisters of sorts. The bestest of friends that fight and laugh and love. Can I see your backpack, please? I won't take anything, I have a present for you actually. Now turn around...", Oddly obedient, Sylph turned around to expose the open backpack full oddities and miscellaneous items. Depositing a significant amount of energy cells and her laser pistol into the backpack, Lucy closed it up and informed Sylph to turn around. "No matter what anyone says, that's yours. Sometimes you can't take everything down with a blade or your fists, so start practicing with that."

Lucy smiled, trying to hide the inclination to cry at having to say goodbye to her sister for the second time. "I'll let you in on a little secret. When we were at the vault, I wasn't planning on getting out there alive. I wanted to die while trying to take someone I hated with me. Then you showed up. You made me think: 'Hey, if I'm gone, nobody will be there for Sylph'. So thank you, Sylphy, for giving me many reasons to live.", Kissing Sylph on the top of her head, Lucy embraced her tightly before getting up on her feet, "I have to go on a little trip with my dad. You stay with yours, okay? We'll find each other again. We always do."

Walking over to Arizona, Lucy extended a hand to kind ghoulish leader of the group. "Sorry that my drama held up your trip so much. Here -- my payment. You'll need it more than I do.", Lucy handed over the caps she had only recently received. "Something urgent popped up, I hope you understand. In the meantime, good luck with everything."

Smiling and nodding respectfully, Lucy started to walk away from the group. Brushing past Thomas, she hurriedly kissed him again, lingering in his arms before whispering to him, "Soon. I promise." Reluctantly, she turned her back and proceeded to walk towards Isaac & Jonathan in the distance. Careful not to look back, she struggled with the urge to run back to the group of loved ones.

*chik clak -- chik clak -- chik clak -- chi---*

"Miss Black.", a familiar voice inquired from behind. It appeared that Kristin Blamco was following her. "A moment?"

Crossing her arms, Lucy turned around and looked upwards at the armored amazonian tower of a woman, "What?", she stated flatly, "If this is another bitching session then I don't want to hear it."

Shifting uncomfortably, the tall knight did something beyond Lucy's immediate expectations. Kristin had sunk her sword blade-first in the ground and proceeded to take a knee. "On the honour of my Knighthood. On my dignity as a BlamCo Princess. Finally, on the might of my Valkyrian blood -- I must ask you to overlook my childish actions from earlier. I-it was most unlike me."

Lucy blinked in surprise, she taken aback. She figured that the Proud Princess was the type to hold a grudge, let alone apologise in the first place. Then again, after her most recent chat with Jonathan, it was revealed that Kristin had also taken the fall for Lucy. Much like Lucy, Kristin wished to see to the protection of the Sylph Clone Army.

"You're not used to these, are you? Apologies I mean.", Lucy remarked before waving her off, "I get it, okay? Jonathan told me everything about what happened with #411. You want to protect something that I care about as well, Sylph --- or more of them to be exact."

Kristin stood up and nodded wordlessly, quite unlike her usual behaviour. Honour and responsibility must be a really big deal to her.

"I should be thanking you for covering for me. So, y'know, thank you.", Lucy extended a hand which was met an armored vice-grip of a return handshake, "It -- ow -- mustn't be easy. Carrying all that weight on your shoulders, dealing with everything while still finding time to smile --- ", Kristin quickly averted her gaze, Lucy had touched on a nerve apparently. "It's not my business, so for what it's worth -- don't hold it all in. Talk to Jonathan, let him in, it doesn't make you any less of the most amazing warrior I have ever seen. Two -- TWO Enclave Heavy Soldiers with just a sword?! I've seen badass, and then I met you.", Lucy stopped gushing for a moment, coughed, and composed herself. "Take it from someone that tried to shoulder everything -- you'll burn out. And, well, the way he looks at you when he talks about you -- you have someone that cares."

With a nod, Lucy started to walk away.

*chik clak -- chik clak -- chik clak -- chi---*

"All the best, Miss Black.", the BlamCo Princess remarked with a gauntlet on her shoulder, "May the Dairy Moonlight guide your path, let your erect nipples point you towards success and fight with relentless passion."

With a confused look, Lucy couldn't help but smile as she stood not-too-far-away from her father's position. She would be joining him in his travels to the Brotherhood of Steel.

Arizona
The Wild Wastelands | The Road To Dunwich | Outside Megaton Gates
""

If anyone was expecting for the Old Ghoul's heartstrings to be tugged by the forlorn retreat Dudley made, they were doomed to disappointment. She merely glared after him until finally letting out a disgusted sigh. When she turned back to the others, it was just in time to catch the last part of what Lucy had said.

"This puts a dent in our plans -- together."

That was enough to almost put a complete stop to her ill temper, pushing it to the back of her mind in favor of a sense of confused concern. As she got onto her tiptoes to kiss Thomas, it was clear that she was giving him a farewell.

"For now. This time it willingly be temporary! You hear me? No dying this time, fake or otherwise, I forbid you. You do your thing. I have to go mend a few fences at the Brotherhood, find out why they kept my dad from me, or burn the place to the ground -- depending on my mood."

Then she promptly turned to Sylph give her not only a farewell but a present: A laser pistol. And she explained that she couldn't be her mommy, because they were already sisters, of a sort at least. So when it was Arizona's turn, she wasn't surprised to be handed back the caps she had given as 'payment'.

"Sorry that my drama held up your trip so much. Here -- my payment. You'll need it more than I do. Something urgent popped up, I hope you understand. In the meantime, good luck with everything."

"I don't think so." Arizona said curtly, before forcefully shoving the caps back into Lucy's hand.

"I don't take away payment from a partner, or a friend. Besides, you never know when you might need a few caps for something or other." she added with a small smile.

Patting her shoulder, she nodded.

"You go take care of whatever it is you need to with the Brotherhood. And you keep yourself alive too. Whatever's out there? Remember that you're tougher and meaner. And if you die, I promise I'll find your grave and piss on it." she promised, before turning to Isaac.

"As for you, Isaac Black, if we ever meet again, remind me to buy you a drink. I'm sure by that point we'll both have plenty of fucked-up shit to talk about." the Ghoulish Freelancer offered, before watching Lucy get pulled away by Tits McHugeKnockers.

As the two ladies spoke, Arizona gave Thomas a sidelong glance.

"You know... It's not like we've left Megaton yet," she started, "I'm sure I can find someone in this shithole that knows the way to Dunwich. If you want to go with her, now will probably be your last chance before I finish this job."

After all, she knew what Lucy meant to Thomas. They had only managed to get reunited the night before, and already she was being swept off by what seemed to be personal demons that she had to take care of herself. She couldn't blame him if Thomas wanted to go with her. If anything, it would probably end up being for the best for her too, if Arizona thought about it. That way, she wouldn't risk getting too attached to anyone.

The Wild Wastelands | Megaton | Megatonian Gates
I Left My Heart in Megaton
Thomas "Shifty" McGee and Sylphee

Loyalty, Love, Loss. These seemed to be the major themes that revolved around Thomas "Shifty" McGee's life. Loyalty sacrifices love and begets loss. There was never a simpler recipe for tragedy. To be separated from the one you love once involved pain beyond measure. To be separated from the one you love twice, the star crossed lovers had it easy but Romeo and Juliet had also never been so blessed as Thomas and Lucy. To have been reunited after all that had happened, there was no other word for it. Walt willing, they would be reunited again. For now, this was goodbye, Lucy Black.

"For now. This time it will only be temporary! You hear me? No dying this time, fake or otherwise, I forbid you.", The Once Mousy Haired and Bookish girl attempted to mockingly deride him in spite of her growing reluctance to leave him, "You do your thing. I have to go mend a few fences at the Brotherhood, find out why they kept my dad from me, or burn the place to the ground -- depending on my mood."

He did not envy those in the Brotherhood of Steel. He'd seen the ferocity of his One-Eyed Gauss Girl. Thomas "Shifty" McGee would have many a grave to dig if they did not cooperate. After all, Lucy was the true beast when it came to the Gauss Rifle Plus' "Beast Mode." Without her, the weapon was merely a shiny ornament left gathering dust on an Enclave shelf.

"Rivet City, Megaton, Springvale and the Citadel. Places where I'd most likely be.", one hand fell to her side, "Take care of my Sylphy. And look out for Arizona while I'm gone."

If the heroic thing to do was to stoically bear the sensation of ones heart being ripped from one's chest, our beloved Former Undertaker was acting decidedly non-heroic. The tears that fell from his face were swallowed by the thirsty D.C. Wastes. Faced with the prospect of roaming the Wastelands once, he was glad to be reminded that he would be in the company of friends, even if one of them was a psychotic blue haired imp with a penchant for accidentally killing everyone around her.

"I love you, Thomas Shifty McGee.", Lucy said before hurriedly stepping forward to kiss him a second time. Breaking away for good the girl that had shared a bottle of vodka and a dance with him smiled and added, "In no uncertain terms."

"I love you too, Lucy Black. I will come back." He said with as much certainty that could be mustered under the circumstances. The Wastelands had a rather nasty habit of robbing the certainty out of any equation. A pair of arms wrapped themselves around his waste. Looking down, he was surprised to see Sylphee hugging him where Lucy had. Smiling, Thomas ushered Sylphee towards her Big Sissy Lucy Psycho Caboosy.

For now this was farewell, Lucy.

------------------------------Sylphee------------------------------

The Red Menace was unsure of how to feel. On the one hand, Mommy Lucy Caboosy and Sylphee's newly discovered Gampa Imax were leaving. So she had to be mad at them for that. On the other hand, Mommy Lucy Caboosy and Sylphee's newly discovered Gampa Imax were leaving to find out stuff about Gampa Imax and Sylphee couldn't be mad at them for that. In the end, all the uncertainty melted away like so much Rad Scorpion Meat mixed with Cheesy BlamCo Stew when Mommy Lucy Caboosy folded the Crimson Menace into a warm and loving embrace.

Explanations were given, secrets were divulged and bestest yet, gifts were gifted upon the luckiest blue haired girl standing in front of the Megaton Gates. As much as Sylphee loved gifts, the fact that Mommy Big Sissy Lucy Caboosy had given her so many gifts and Sylphee had not a one to give her back left a feeling of uneasiness deep within the chest of the usually happy go lucky little girl. An idea popped into Sylphee mind as Big Sissy Lucy Caboosy turned away to talk to Missy Arizona Not Old One Not Leather Faced Lady Not Ghoul Whore With The Gun.

Grabbing Big Sissy Lucy Caboosy by the hand, Sylphee started to speak.

"Big Sissy Lucy Caboosy I want you to have -" Click

Sylphee never got a chance to finish her sentence as she gripped the choker around neck and gave it a tug. Where Sylphee once stood gripping the hand of her Big Sissy Lucy Caboosy, Sylph now stood holding the hand of Lucy. If Lucy had any compunction about distancing herself from the bloodthirstier of the Sylphee/Sylph duo, it was quickly squashed by the look on Sylph's face. Somewhere between thoughtful and sad, Sylph's eyes were fixed on the ground. She stayed like that for a moment before she pounced on her sister, her arms wrapping themselves around Lucy's waist. A hug. A genuine hug form the Blue Haired Psychopath.

"I... I remember you." Sylph said quietly, her face buried in Lucy's chest, "Thank you... for being my sister."

A heartbeat later, the moment was gone as Sylph released Lucy from the hug. Nodding at her older sister, Sylph walked back towards her Father before putting her choker back on, wiping away the traces of sadness from her face.

------------------------------Thomas------------------------------

"You know... It's not like we've left Megaton yet," she started, "I'm sure I can find someone in this shithole that knows the way to Dunwich. If you want to go with her, now will probably be your last chance before I finish this job."

Arizona should have known better than to make that offer to the Former Undertaker. This wasn't about getting paid, or personal pride or a sense of honor, Natsuki Manriki had told the group what was happening around Dunwich. This was about ensuring the safety of the D.C. Wastes and its inhabitants.

"I'm sorry, Arizona. I can't let you do this without me. I owe you a debt that I intend to pay. You remember what Miss Manriki told us about the Ancient Ones around Dunwich. You'll need all the help you can get if you're to be successful. Besides, what's a little time away from Lucy to ensure that we have the rest of our lives to be happy?"

Picking up his pack, Thomas shouldered it as well as the assault rifle before gesturing for Sylphee to do the same. They were ready to go whenever everyone else was.

Megaton Gates
Dark thoughts and silver linings

A single glimpse was enough to take what frickle optimism he was feeling from his talk with Lucy and drown it in a sea of hopelessness.

What goes up inevitably crashes down. He was growing used to the hallucinations. But that didn't stop them from being unnerving. He wasn't sure if that was because of the hallucinations themselves or the fact that he was getting used to them not sitting right in his head, but the result was the same, anyway. It was happening again. How many times today? It was happening again. But this was different.

This time it was him.

It was happening again. Why him? Why now? It was happening again. Why did they not cease? It happened again. Why wouldn't they stop?

"It...it IS you, isn't it?"

At least it was in his voice, not hers. At least for once it wasn't lampooning him. At least he was being left alone.
He'd never escape them, would he? They'd never leave him alone. Sometime along the way something in his head broke and this was the result. A frickle old man, slowly losing it more and more, unable to differenciate reality from fantasy.

"I can see him now."

She could see him too? The poor girl. That made him feel even more miserable. Lucy didn't deserve something like this. She was too young... but then again, after everything she'd been through thanks to him, he shouldn't be surprised.

But... if she could see him...

He was real.

Jonathan watched as father and daughter reunited, a prospect that until a few minutes ago seemed impossible. Isaac Black, his benefactor who was regarded as deader than dead, had suddenly appeared before them, alive and well.

Then why didn't he feel happy?

Or for that matter, why didn't he feel anything? There was no excitement, no relief. A hollowness speard throughout his chest as he watched the Black family reunion. He almost wanted to take some steps back and disappear. Almost. He was sapped of energy for that too.

And then, Isaac turned to him.

Isaac: Jon? I'm sorry for being dead. I didn't plan it that way, but I'm here now. What I can do for you?

He couldn't help but feel dumbfounded.

"Do... for me?"

Words, words. Such devilish things. They elude you when you need them, and escape you when you don't. How could he describe the precariousness of his situation? What words would be adequate to describe the utter helpnessness that he felt, the self-loathing further fanned by the phantoms that plague him, his apparent disability at distinguishing reality to the twisted hallucinations of his mind? And what could a man, even if that man is Isaac Black, do?

"I don't know..." he hung his head, "What... what the hell am I even going to do, Isaac? I escaped the Enclave, stumbled my way in this hell of a wasteland for ten years... And for what? To return to their yoke again. History repeats itself. My lone hope hangs on a thread."

He raised his head to face him, and rubbed his forehead, "I don't know anymore. I'm too spent to not feel hopeless, but even so I have too little going for me."


Enclave Vault
Cinders of the past, firestarters of the present

Medical Officer #46 sit next to Intelligence Officer #411, hunching forward on the desk, clasping her hands in front of her mouth, the light of the monitor contrasting on her glasses, giving them an ominous glow.

Jonathan Aristotle McKenna. The man that almost ruined her life, the man that almost doomed her daughter, in the flesh. What a sorry state he was in; had she not been informed that this was him, she would have difficulty believing this broken shell of a man was him. On top of being covered in blood, he looked malnourished, unnaturally aged, his stature and gaze that of a man whose psyche is so fractured it's beyond repair, only breaking more and more. He deserved all that and more, for what he did to her. For what he almost did to Amarantha.

"What do you make of this? How does someone resurrect a traitor that was confirmed as bring killed years ago?"

#46 didn't even turn to acknowledge the question. In her chest reverbated a sensation she hadn't experienced in a long time, not since the breakup. Jonathan Aristotle McKenna, the man that she hoped died in the destruction of Raven Rock, still wasted oxygen. It almost felt like a cruel joke; so many good, capable people, people that could have made a real difference in saving the wasteland had died on that day, yet he, a despicable, manipulative man without morals or a shred of decency had survived. Had he wrapped this group of people under his finger yet? She couldn't tell. But she knew he was dangerous, and he would get more still, the more he spread his influence. She was almost tempted to call in all the favours she had, to make sure that he wouldn't survive the week.

But only almost. She was, above all, a professional, and would not let emotions rule over her. She was certain there was a reason he hadn't been killed yet, and though she was being kept out of the loop, she had faith in the Enclave and what it fought for.

Back to business. The apparent resurrection of Isaac Black was indeed quite puzzling, though her of all people knew there were many ways to cheat death out there, one less obvious than the next.

"It is certainly possible," she finally stated in a dry, matter-of-fact way, "But I have too little information to come to a satisfying conclusion. As such, I request that I am given access to Isaac Black's file, as well as the full report of his death."

She pulled back on her seat, almost slouching. Almost. A professional cannot afford to grow lax. She eyed the report that #411 put down, the one about another of her ex-husband's victims.

"I see that my recommendation that he be given two weeks time to fully recuperate have been ignored" she stated in the same tone, taking the report and reading it carefully, "Pretty impressive, considering he very recently woke up from a coma with a laser shot in the chest, a punctured lung and missing a hand. Plenty of potential, this one. At the rate he's going, he'll be qualified for assignment in six months." she put the report back on the desk, "Quicker than you, unless I am mistaken." She placed her arms on the chair's armrests, clasping her hands in front of her chest, "Hatred is one hell of a motivator." She knew, she finally realised what the sensation she was feeling were.

For the first time in 10 years, Chief Medical Officer #46 felt motivated.

The Three Musketeers: A Parting Gift Or Two

Despite just encouraging Evan and Dudley to make new friends with their soon to be travelling companions, William had one last thing to do. Isaac and Lucy were preparing to leave, and a few were saying their goodbyes.

"You two, keys please. The Blacks could make better use of your motorcycles." Said William, gesturing with both of his hands.

"How do you figure that one?" Said Evan. It was a big ask, motorcycles were hard enough to come by or even get working. Asking Evan and Dudley to hand over theirs for an indefinite period of time sounded like a mad decision.

"Because we're going with that lot to Dunwich right? They don't have any vehicle so they'll have to go on foot, if we're travelling with them the most you can do on them is trundle along at three miles an hour and fight to keep them upright. They'll be more of a hindrance than help this time."

Evan raised his hand to make a point, lowered it slowly and almost formed a few words with his mouth. Instead he handed over his keys, Dudley followed Evan's lead and handed over his keys too.

"Thanks, at least you're more likely to get them back than I am mine. Still sitting right outside the Enclave base and everything..."

===========

William - You need these keys, your father, and two motorcycles.

Catching up the the imminently departing Black family, William handed the keys to Dudley's bike to Isaac and Evan's keys to Lucy.
"You could do with faster transportation. Just be careful with the suspension, we've been overloading them for some time." William turned to go before adding, "Just be careful in general really. You two just found each other, it's important not to abandon something like that." He said before actually leaving, not sure whether the advice about abandoning important people was more for Lucy or himself.

==========

Evan - How to win friends and influence people.

After seeing Dudley get a frosty reception from Arizona, Evan decided to try and smooth things over with their new travelling companions. Two of them were talking together, the ghoulette and Lucy's boyfriend. After deciding that would be a good name for a band or bandit duo Evan went for his opening line.

"Sorry about my friend, I'm looking forward to travelling with the pair of you.

Let's see THIS go wrong!

==========

Dudley - Where cheesy puns go to die.

For reasons we will probably never know, Dudley decided the first person he'd talk to was Kristin Blamco. After such a harsh rejection from Arizona he wasn't looking for luurrve in all the wrong places, she just seemed like a nice person that wouldn't yell at him.

"Hey missy, if it aint too personal a question so soon, why do ya smell like mac and cheese?"

A bit tactless, but have fun with that one Duds. You'll be waking up two weeks later praising Blamco with only half an idea what your name is.

==========

William again - It's dangerous to go alone, take this!

Alright, not really alone at all when you think about it, but William had returned to the rest of the group and handed Lucy's plasma pistol to Thomas "Shifty" McGee, the one she had given to him when they last parted company. It had been done with the intention of keeping him safe, but he'd hardly used it at all and Shifty seemed like a more appropriate person to have it.

"...I've hardly used it at all and you seem like a more appropriate person to have it." Finished William, handing over what little ammo he had for the plasma pistol. After that he turned to look west and spoke to nobody in particular.
"I'm actually quite excited to be back on foot again."

Adventure beckoned.

Arizona
The Wild Wastelands | The Road To Dunwich | Outside Megaton Gates
"Once you take in one stray, you end up taking in the rest."

When Arizona looked at Thomas, she could tell by the expression on his face that the offer, even if tempting, wasn't enough to change his mind. She had two thoughts after realizing that: First was that he was a damned stubborn fool. Second was that she couldn't help but like that about the tall, gangling young man.

"I'm sorry, Arizona. I can't let you do this without me. I owe you a debt that I intend to pay. You remember what Miss Manriki told us about the Ancient Ones around Dunwich. You'll need all the help you can get if you're to be successful. Besides, what's a little time away from Lucy to ensure that we have the rest of our lives to be happy?"

She snorted softly and shook her head. Then she turned to face him, hands on her hips and her single eye glinting with a hint of amusement as she looked up at him.

"You know that you don't owe me a thing, Thomas, but I suppose I can't argue. It'll be nice to have you along." she said.

But when she glanced over at the kid, Sylph, she couldn't help but wonder about whether or not it was alright to take her along too. She was no doubt good in a fight, but even Sylph could get overrun by Ferals. The very idea threatened to send uneasy shivers up her spine.

She never particularly liked Ferals. Even though most were peaceful around other Ghouls, the fact that they used to be normal people unnerved her some. Radiation, time... Simple lack of will. Whatever the reason, they lost their minds and were reduced to nothing more than beasts. The idea freaked her out at odd moments, especially since it was a reminder that maybe, just maybe, that would end up being her one day.

"Sorry about my friend, I'm looking forward to travelling with the pair of you."

She hadn't even noticed that one of the trio that escorted Isaac Black had approached them, and as she looked him over it was clear that it wasn't the same one that had tried to hit her up. And he was lucky that he wasn't the same man, because otherwise she would've laughed in his face. Instead, she merely quirked up a brow and narrowed her eye.

"And why is that? I don't remember inviting you to join us to Dunwich." she drawled.

In truth, she knew that she couldn't really turn away help for this job. A small, greedy part of her wanted to, though. After all, ten thousand caps could only split so many ways until she barely had enough caps at the end of it to cover travel and ammunition expenses. Not only that, but she had a sneaking suspicion that The Three Stooges that showed up not long ago came as a set.

A suspicion that was confirmed not long after she thought it.

"I'm actually quite excited to be back on foot again."

The other member of the trio that wasn't a Casanova Wannabe had come up, and after handing a Plasma Pistol to Shifty, seemed to pose even as he looked off towards the inevitable sunset. Her withered face promptly twisted into an expression of annoyance.

"Oh, goody. Oh happy day! Lemme guess, Romeo over there is tagging along too, isn't he?" she asked with increasingly ill-temper as she jabbed a thumb in the direction of the man in question.

Outside the Abandoned Garage Outside Vault 112, which does not legally exist according to the town council of REDACTED, but is often used to torture re-educate those who vote incorrectly in meaningless municipal elections

Imagine a ball.

Not bad, not bad at all. Except for one detail you forgot: it is a metal ball you should be imagining right now. Don't worry, its clear that you're a little new or rusty at this... or possibly both at the same time. That is also quite possible. Time doesn't always work in one isolated town that this particular metal ball has flown through.

Incidentally, you should also be imagining that the ball can fly, and indeed is currently attempting to activate its hover engines at this very moment because it is not really a simple metal ball, but a vaguely ball-shaped robot with antennae. Maybe you're really not that good at this "imagining things"... thing.

Let's try again.

Imagine a beach ball sized robot vaguely shaped like a ball with grills where its "face" would be, a name spray-painted onto it that reads "VERA 2.0", the color of the paint is constantly shifting color so there may be irregular updates on what color it is if that proves to be important for any reason. Then again, nothing is really all that important if you think about it as you stare at the partially starry expanse at night, and start to worry about what would happen to the light pollution keeping you safe from the tyrannical stars if the radiation poisoning kills it off...

Anyway. Are you imagining a ball-shapped flying robot that has just now managed to get off the ground? Good. That's... actually really good. Are you in my head now? Well, pull up an armchair and those sexy bunny slippers you think no one knows about, you're going to be here for a while. So... the robot. Yes. She. And yes, most robots do not have a gender, but this one does. I mean... with a name like "Vera" (which may or may not be an abbreviation for something like her previous names "ED-E" and "EDNA" were), and adorable ribbons in her antennae... well, what else can you think of such a robot except as a "she?"

I dunno. How about by her name? Didya ever think about that?

Vera waved her antennae around a bit, sending a kind of hollow vibrating sound throughout the mostly empty tract of wasteland around her. This is how she says hello.

She was never entirely sure if that got across, so she also searched her data-banks for an appropriate series of voice files and cobbled together a somewhat hap-hazard greeting.

The following is a transcript of the voices that came out of the little flying robot in quick succession to form this greeting:

"Hello!" said a bright and chipper robotic voice which had that tinny, infuriatingly cheerful quality that instantly made you want to throttle the voice's original owner so that you no longer had to listen to their stupid, stupid voice.

"I'm..." said an old man's voice which sounded as though it were struggling for breath... as if someone were currently throttling its original owner.

"THREE DOG! BOW-WOW!" said an all-too familiar voice for the residents of the Capitol Wasteland.

"JK," said a much younger voice, one that sounded happy and mischievous... and like it knew its way around machines, though it is not clear how that came across in just the voice.

"I'm..." came the old man's death rattle again.

"lVERA!" said a sultry voice that sounded far too crisp and clear... and impossibly tantalizing to be anything but a Pre-War recording. Probably a late night talk show host or something along those lines... though the robot had clearly edited that file a little to emphasize the last part of the name, leaving the preceding "El" all but inaudible to anyone without superhuman hearing.

Is there anyone like that around? Its so hard to keep track sometimes with your brain-washed sleeper agents, and grunting cyber-ninjas, and clones of blue-haired people... and lots of just barely censor-approved sex hanging around at the edges...

Anyway. Meet Vera. Nicely done.

You've Met The Vera.

Cue music!

The Wild Wastelands | Megaton | Outside the Gates
Departures... and Arrivals.
Thomas "Shifty" McGee and Sylphee

Thomas nodded in thanks to William Knight for his gifted Plasma Pistol. While he wasn't exactly a energy weapons nut as much as Lucy Black was, he simply needed to inspect the weapon to get the gist of the design. Point the business end at the bad guys and pull the trigger. Everything, like muzzle velocities and how leading would be picked up somewhere down the line when it was more appropriate to fire the weapon. Given that they were in front of the Megaton Gates under the watch of the guards after barely having escaped not just a riot but an attempt by Colin Moriarty on Jonathan McKenna's life. Now was not the time to stop and experiment with weapons.

Eyeing the man who'd gifted him with the handheld Plasma weapon, Shifty couldn't help but think that the name William Knight sounded familiar. Was it a name that was mentioned in the Enclave Vault? No, he remembered a place where the name was mentioned further back in the past. Perhaps the Citadel? If that was the case maybe they could use the trio's assistance in the matter that lay before them.

Thomas shook the thoughts from his head, he needed to focus more on the task at hand, which was get out of the area before more of Moriarty's goons showed up to finish the job that Moriarty himself couldn't complete... at least he tried to until Arizona's gruff voice pierced through his thought process.

"Oh, goody. Oh happy day! Lemme guess, Romeo over there is tagging along too, isn't he?" she asked with increasingly ill-temper as she jabbed a thumb in the direction of the man in question.

"I think he is, Arizona. at least that's the impression that I get from the trio." Thomas said neutrally. He enjoyed the Ancient one's company and while Thomas had seen kindness in her actions, she could hardly be called a saint and there were times where where she was as far from a saint as one could get.

Taking her to the side, Shifty addressed her gently and respectfully as was due to her status as a revered Ancient one.

"Maybe we should be nicer to them. I know that you might not like the one you call Romeo but you heard Natsuki. It's a guaranteed suicide mission. Maybe with more people, it wouldn't be." Thomas said slowly, thinking aloud before appealing to her more mercenary side, "Besides, if we have to run, at least the Sick Ones will have the three of them to rip up before getting to us."

Turning to William, he waved as introduced himself.

"I'm Thomas McGee by the way. This is Arizona and the one in the crimson is Sylphee. I would keep away from her if I were you." The Former Undertaker of the East nodded towards Sylphee who was looking intently at the Laser Pistol that Lucy had given to her... down the barrel.

"SYLPHEE! NO!" The Former Undertaker turned Father exclaimed as he rushed over to where Sylphee was standing and grabbed the laser, moving it just enough for the bright crimson beam to miss her head by inches, searing a hole in the Megatonian Gates They needed to go, post haste. The sooner they started moving, the sooner they would be able to keep Sylphee distracted. If it wasn't Sylphee, it was the other woman. No sooner than he had finished keeping Sylphee from scorching her face off, he stopped speaking in time to hear Jonathan McKenna's companion speak.

"May the Dairy Moonlight guide your path, let your erect nipples point you towards success and fight with relentless passion."

With the amount of craziness that was contained in this group, they were likely to draw attention sooner rather than later. With any hope, the group would be leaving before anything showed up.


The Wild Wastelands | The Enclave Vault | #411's Office
Patience...
Enclave Intelligence Officer #411

"Pretty impressive, considering he very recently woke up from a coma with a laser shot in the chest, a punctured lung and missing a hand. Plenty of potential, this one. At the rate he's going, he'll be qualified for assignment in six months." Enclave Medical Specialist #46 stated as she put the report back on the desk, "Quicker than you, unless I am mistaken... Hatred is one hell of a motivator."

The Enclave Intelligence Officer ignored the Medical Officer's jab in regards to Recruit #411B's shattering of a number of training records, a few of them held by #411 herself. It was to be expected that someone would some day break her records. It was rather impressive the progress that he'd been making. Pulling up an order form, Enclave Intelligence Officer #411 sent a request to the Training Arm of the Enclave to push up the time table for the trainee.

"Enclave Medical Officer #46. What's you assessment on pushing up the time table for the completion of your patient's training?" The Intelligence Officer asked rhetorically. The order to speed up the training process had already been sent. The wanted to get more of a gauge on her "partner's" resolve to see this through, regardless of the cost of life and regardless of whatever silly oath the Doctor had taken to preserve the life of her patients.

Of course, this also cut short the amount of time that the Sylphee Army would have to train and to get outfitted with new weapons. This was calculated however. The decision to use the Clone army to combat whatever aggression Ghoul China sent into the DC Wastes had already been made. She simply needed to reveal their existence to FalloutJack. After that, it was a matter of getting them trained en masse.

"It must be tempting." The Officer said out of the blue, her finger hovering over a button set next to the screen displaying the scene in front of Megaton "With just the push of a button, we could crash the aerial drone into his position and remove your ex-husband from the board as well as FalloutIsaac, once again."

It was indeed tempting even from Enclave Intelligence Officer #411's position. To have the ability to wipe out this group of threats to the Enclave and not use it took a high measure of discipline. There would likely never be another opportunity to kill so many of the Enclave's more dangerous enemies at one time. With one push of a button she could have wiped out Lucy Black, Isaac Black, Thomas McGee, Kristin Blamco and Jonathan McKenna.

Withdrawing her finger from the button, Enclave Intelligence Officer #411 continued waiting for the group to move out. On another screen, one that was set up to monitor activity around Springvale Elementary School, the remote controlled aerial drone picked up the movements of a Deathclaw, one that appeared to bypass the Sylphy guards with ease. Strangely enough, it appeared that the Deathclaw spoke a few words to them before they allowed him to pass.

Talion - The Republic of Dave

High exterior contamination, surrounded by hostile forces, mechanized weapons platform trained on self, disadvantageous position. Change of conditions required. Distract hostile forces, locate suitable cover from hostile forces, acquire suitable firepower, resolve situation, locate decontamination agents.

Talion snapped into focus as his pipboy shunted generated objectives into his mind. It had been awhile since it had done that, thought the situation seemed appropriate for that feature to come back online. He shook his head slightly as he tried to pull together a plan. More time was needed to think of a distraction that wouldn't kill him in the process. The buildings nearby would work for cover if he could make the run to them. Firepower would take time if he couldn't find an armoury on-site. Decontamination agents shouldn't even be considered at this point.

Talion crouched down as he could and began pulling supplies from his pack. The first thing on his mind at this point with little in the way of mobility was dealing with the Metal Gear Box, as he had learned it was called. Blueprints for the thing were an impossibility so it's capabilities were unknown and so falling back to training from the old days was the only choice. Design appeared to be post war but clearly built on pre-war methodology. AI would rely on IFFs and motion rather than actual intelligence. Operator possible considering he was still alive. Mechanisms would be hardened against pulses unless the designers didn't expect high burst electromagnetism in post-war conditions. Armour would be bulletproofed and hardened against explosives. Treating it like a hardened bunker would be a better choice than thinking of it as a machine, but ignoring the mechanical components would be idiotic.

He began disassembling a mini nuke, a pulse grenade, and a few other things he had brought with him as he began constructing a better charge for the job.

As he peeled away the casing of the nuke, something simple occurred to him, he switched through his radio channels and instructed her to return to the brotherhood citadel if he failed to communicate in an hour. He wasn't going to allow himself to be traded and it was entirely possible he could die in the escape attempt. The recognition tone came through to him and he continued his work, waiting for something to change around him or for enough to have been done to feel prepared.

Alien Escape Pod
Rainy with a chance of Escape Pods

"Hey, Astroboy. Heeeeey."

Eddie poked at the latest still unconcious victim of alien interspecies fetish porn, waiting for some sort of response. Alas, after around a minute that felt more like two and a half months, the young man remained unresponsive, and Eddie grew bored. Never a good thing, that, So, in his boredom, he decided to get creative.

At first, he'd poke along a steady rhythm, not really fast, just organised. Three pokes in quick succession, a small pause, rince and repeat. Then three became five, and the the pause smaller. Picking up the pace, he started alternating between the five-poke and the three-poke, as the rhythm grew quicker. The other hand joined in, poking at the other side, poking at a slower rhythm that matched the pauses of the original. He begun alternating the speed of the pokes between his two hands, and eventually created an entire different rhythm altogether. Then other fingers joined in, and, soon enough, the opening of Painkiller was being played on the poor intergalactic porn star's head. As Eddie was thinking on the lineup of the finger concert he was about to do (you gotta have songs that match, after all), aswell as debating whether he'd do an encore once finished, the sound of something large falling towards the ground whizzed in his ears, and soon enough the impact from the crash almost got him off balance. Turning around to see what it was now, Eddie couldn't help but grin at the absurdity of the situation.

"I knew I should've bought an umbrella!"

As soon as he made his turn, a large, heavy, metallic object impacted on his head, knocking his hat off and causing him to humourously fall on the ground as it circled in the air, finally landing next to him. Rubbing the point of impact and letting out annoyed grunts, he raised his torso and grabbed the object. A familiar thing, a symbol of terror in East and West both, the Enclave Power Armour Helmet gleamed morbidly as light shone upon it from cracks in the damaged pod. Most people would've thrown it away; Enclave had caused a lot of suffering all around the coasts, and no one would be interested in wearing the helmet of the guys that killed their wife. Of course, Eddie being Eddie, he didn't have any problems with it, for he never had a wife; only one night stands and extremely short relationships. You can't keep a free spirit down, after all. Putting it on, he couldn't help but notice that he couldn't see shit, which was wierd as that could mean that all the Enclave soldiers that had tried to kill him in the past were firing blind, though that'd certainly explain their accuracy. Or it was simply broken. Luckily, Eddie was a trained mechanic, with knowledge on how to fix things pedestrian and imperial both. With his high amount of expertise, he tried the most universal and acclaimed method known to man: hitting the helmet until it worked. And work it did, after around five knocks. Stubborn thing.

[Spooky.]

Putting his hat over the helmet, he turned once again to look at the cause of this ruckus. Another escape pod had landed, this one not of alien origin (Trust Eddie, he knows, he's a mechanic). From within spew forth two figures. One was a babe, a beautiful flower that rarely blossoms in the wasteland. Well, beautiful was subjective; any ghoul girl looks better than a feral ghoul girl, and since there are no fat ghoul girls. or worse, fat feral ghoul girls, it would thus be safe to say that the beauty standards when it comes to ghouls were pretty clear. Not that it mattered to Eddie, of course. A hole's a hole, after all. Speaking of, an exaggerated mass of muscled flesh, so exaggerated that that he looked like he ate Billy Herrington to gain his strength, lay on the ground. He looked like quite the speciment, a fine example of how brawn helped man survive through the stone age. Indeed, looking at his attempts to make a weapon made Eddie think of monkeys trying to make weapons out of branches. Of course, it was too early to tell if this furless gorilla would follow the monkeys to the next step; namely, reluctanctly giving up and throwing their poop at the audience. Right now, it more like seemed that he'd continue rubbing his head after a big metal ball landed on it.

[I must say, I am rather disappointed by the size of your gun.] Eddie said as he stared at the Aniki-wannabe from above, shotgun on hand, [So, Biolante, what brings you to upon the presence of the Uberbilly and his two disciples? Art thou a pilgrim wishing for a blessing?]


Enclave Vault
Familiar Territory

"Enclave Medical Officer #46. What's you assessment on pushing up the time table for the completion of your patient's training?"

#46 did not so turn to answer the question, instead continuing staring on the monitor. In her mind thoughts and emotions swirled violently, in contrast to her cold, emotionless exterior. Chief among them, a primal fear: That of the safety of her child. Jonathan Aristotle McKenna, that monster, once sought to deny their child its rightfully claimed chance at life, and if he were to learn...

No, it would not come to that. She wouldn't let it come to that. A parent must always put their child's life first.

"It must be tempting." #411 butted it, and this time #46 acknowledged the fledgling arriviste, raising an eyebrow, "With just the push of a button, we could crash the aerial drone into his position and remove your ex-husband from the board as well as FalloutIsaac, once again."

Needless to say, Enclave Chief Medical Officer was rather unimpressed by the Intelligence Officer's theatrics.

"Unless given the order, I would suggest you do not push that button," she said, as disconnected and emotionlessness as ever, "As for my assessment, it is that you should not waste my time with nugatory, inconsequencal questions. I have experience with immoral, deceptive parvenus, lest you forget." She gave the Agent an indifferent glare with half-closed eyes, before burying the lower half of her face in her clasped hands and turning back to the monitor, fully aware and unconcerned that she just compared #411 to her ex-husband.

"A talking deathclaw..." she paused, considering, seemingly unfettered by such a sight, "I thought them deemed a failed experiment and exterminated."

This already revelatory day was turning to be quite enlightening, indeed.

Alien Escape Pod

Charlie Cannon wasn't quite sure where he was or how he'd got there, but wherever he was it was quite unlike anything he'd ever seen before. The first thing he noticed was he was completely surrounded by people, more than he thought he'd ever seen in his entire lifetime. They were all standing upright, jam-packed tightly together in a loud, sweaty mass of human flesh. The second thing was the music. It assaulted his eardrums in a murderous cacophony, but as he grew adjusted to the volume it wasn't an entirely unpleasant experience. He even started moving along with the crowd to the beat, getting swept away in the atmosphere. The only thing that took away some of the enjoyment was someone behind him was using his head as a drum kit, tapping his head harder and harder as the music ramped up...

It was hot. And bright. Something sharp was digging into his back. Those were the sensations that greeted Charlie as he awoke with a groan, blinking and rubbing his grimy eyes against the blinding sun over the wasteland. His head pounded like someone had actually performed a drum solo on it rather than just a dream, and he was terribly thirsty. Just how long had he been lying there anyway? No wait a moment, where the hell were his clothes? He was almost completely naked, his modesty preserved by only a scant loincloth. There was also something tied around his head, however the string holding it in place refused to yield to his prying fingers.

It was at this moment Charlie realised he wasn't alone. He let out a strangled yelp at the sight of the huge, green ghoul with his back turned to him, its attention focused on something out of Charlie's view. He clapped a hand over his mouth, praying that the big creature hadn't heard him....

 Pages PREV 1 . . . 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 NEXT

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here