emerged into the world of the Deathlands.
20 2001, nuclear war erupted across the globe throwing the world into a
twenty-five year winter. As the light slowly seeped back to the surface the
world as we knew it was drastically changed. But the newly sculpted land was not
all barren, and life began to crawl back. Some, the fortunate ones found
stockpiles of weapons and gear, others stole and killed for it, but those who
had the supplies and weapons held the power.
government gone and it was those people who took control, calling them selves;
Baron, Master, King, Lord, Prince, General, or other dignified tittles they
carved out their kingdoms.
and women in poverty did what they had to for survival. Killing for food,
selling their bodies, selling others bodies, and hunting the wilds of the
Deathlands for a chance at a better life.
was no longer the country of the rich and free. It was the world of horror,
mutations, slavery, torture, and pain. It now goes beyond the sayings “kill or
be killed”, and “Survival of the fittest”.
Oregon was now divided into four factions, Baron Shrader the leader of the
Carnival controlled most of the north in what was once and still known as Felony
Flats. South in the ruins of Old Bend a man by the name of John Driedric the 3rd
gathers a small army of outcasts. To the east in Prineville, the aging son of an
ex politician struggled to stay alive against the constant attacks from the
north. And to the west lies uneasy peace as Michelle Rishara Cooper, baroness of
the small villa known as Vanity struggles to keep her people from the upcoming
Three hours after they left the Redoubt Maggy stopped them at the ruins
of what used to be an old resort hotel. She had seen many of such sights along
the ruined snaking trails that were once roads and highways, this one was no
different. It stood on an embankment overlooking one of the many now nameless
rivers. Once it had been a called the Fishi’n Stay Lodge. Not much of the old
yellow paint was left on the weather warn walls, and even less of the windows
were intact. As always there would not be anything worth salvaging, as it had
been taken years ago.
going to stay here.” Courtney asked, raising an eyebrow.
been in worse. Besides, I don’t think you want to sleep outside with the
I quit being afraid of Coyotes years ago.” She stopped him
four companions walked forward in unison and entered the hotel weapons drawn.
Jeremy with Scott’s shotgun took the lead, while Maggy took the rear. The inn
was not in bad shape. There was no running water and no heat, but the building
itself was sturdy.
four of them unanimously chose a room on the bottom floor. It was obviously well
used after the war. A fire pit had been added along one wall. And three cots
were pulled in already. And after finding the skeletal remains in four other
rooms none of them wanted explore any further than safety demanded.
went to the creek to gather water Jeremy gathered dry wood, and Maggy prepared
some self heats, while Scott Went through the gear they had grabbed from the
had very little survival gear. Only what his and the remains of Maggy’s pack
contained to get through the two day trek to her home. Three blankets, eating
utensils, some rope, one days food, and virtually no medical supplies.
weapons they almost stood on two feet, Scott And Maggy already had a full
complement, but Jeremy and Courtney had nothing of their own. Now grateful that
the clowns had stopped him from hiding the third pack he was able to outfit the
other two with something.
Jeremy and Courtney returned lugging their loads, and bitching about the
lack of room service. “Better than white coats hotel up on the mountain
though.” Jeremy growled setting his load in front of the fire pit.
looked up from the table, his eyes showing the lack of energy that he felt.
“Santa dropped off presents while you were out. He said to tell you He’s
sorry about the last fifty years.” And he motioned toward the two lumps of
and Courtney walked swiftly toward the cot.
one is for you love.” Scott had a habit of changing his tone and accent, most
of the time he did it for humor other times it had more of a purpose. Ether way
it caused all three of them to stop and pause, bringing back a reminder of what
once was. “Sorry.” Scott excused himself walking out quietly.
of them knew what had been lost, and they let him go, after a few minutes just
like children on Christmas morning they tore the cloth away from the items
wrapped within. Jeremy was the fastest; he opened the package to find a Barnett
Crossbow, thirty bolts, a pair of blades, another USP 40 cal., two clips and
fifty rounds of ammo.
this mean I have to give the 12 gauge back?” He frowned
did you get?….. Courtney.” Maggy
asked almost forgetting the younger girls name.
“Pistols.” She smiled, stepping back so that the other two could see. On
the cot in front of her was a S&W 38 cal. derringer with pearl grips, a
small S&W 22 cal pistol, two thousand 22 rounds, ten 38’s, and a small
black knife. “And A switch blade.” Grinning.
rest of the evening was uneventful. Scott didn’t return for hours, which gave
Maggy a chance to get to know her new companions. And get some info on him as
wasn’t always like this, fuck none of us were.” His anger flaring
momentarily. “Scott sometimes is like two people. He has this caring side that
not, its like, like the perfect big brother or father and for a select few girls
the perfect lover.” Grinning, as memories flood back to him. “And another
side that now seems to have taken over. Way back when, him and I used to spar,
full contact. And. He always said that I could beat him, but sometimes when he
didn’t know I was looking. I could see it in his eyes. A wolf in shadow the
Amok he used to talk about, something that he hid well enough to keep control.
“ Pausing to take a drink of water. “I saw it a few times while we were
fighting. He’d get hell O mad and ether just back off entirely or he’d. I
don’t know, Scott was always strong, but this one time. I had hid arm leg
locked, and I must’ve hurt him, because he went from kneeling on the ground to
standing strait upright holding me out over the ground at shoulder length.” He
took another drink “I saw it in his eyes then. I know that if we were to
really go at it, if he got mad there is no way I’d win.”
happened to him?”
“I don’t know, when I was in the brig, I could sometimes hear him
screaming, don’t know what it was, don’t think I want to. And I sure as hell
am not going to ask him until he volunteers some information.” Tipping his cup
toward the door Scott had exited. “That man carries many demons, and sometimes
I think they are his strength.” “First time I’ve
called him a man, but I guess we both are know.”
midnight Jeremy who was gazing outside and just enjoying the fact that he was no
longer cooped up in the redoubt saw a flicker of light. As if by magic Scott’s
solid face lit up. “Been a long time old man.” He said to himself, and
walked to meet with his brother.
was still standing against a lamppost when Jeremy arrived. “Anything out here
Scott replied handing over one of the cigars
you quit” motioning for his Zippo
habits die hard.”
you should know.” Jeremy started taking his first full puff. “Our families
have control down here.”
when she was talking about there being barons and shit? She told me their
Driedric, and Shrader. Oh there is another one but I’ve never herd of him.
Figures Travis Shrader would take power, but Cooper and John.”
always wanted to control the world, maybe he got his chance.”
know who she is?”
I do.” He said frankly
“We’re related to all of the power Old man, we might just yet be able
to live a good life here.”
means we have more troubles than we need. Travis always was a son of a bitch,
Derek was paranoid enough that whatever I had with him probably was never passed
down to his children, And It means that I have to deal with watching the one
person I loved more than the world pass away of old age. Which still leaves
Maggy, Every time I look at her I see two things, Her grandmother, and a
grandchild that could have been my own.”
threw his cigar down and turned to walk back inside.
walking away from me old man, and see what happens!” Jeremy challenged. Scott
whirled demons flaring within his eyes. “I’m not afraid of you big brother,
that still hasn’t changed.” Holding his ground. “But I don’t want to
fight you either. Both our tempers are on crack, lets quit talking out our ass
and work together.”
grinned bearing his teeth. Well aware that his hand was on the Defender behind
his back. “Take care little brother. Your fears will come to greet you, just
outside the light” And with that he snuck back into the inn.
Jeremy cursed, “Well that didn’t go so well, dumb ass” As the memories of
Scott’s Screams flooded his brain. “Where did they hide my brother? And what
creature took his place?” Together him and Scott were a great team. And they
complemented each other’s skills. But if things didn’t go correctly they
could become the worst of enemies. And frankly he needed Scott to help lead the
group. And help protect his sister.
The quartet continued on their journey after a small meal. Jeremy who was
carrying the food in his pack pulled the two heaviest items out for breakfast.
Each MRE weighed in at nearly two and a half pounds or more. And he had no
intention of packing them the next forty miles to Maggy’s home. “Pack them
in the gut not on the butt.” He cheerfully called out. Proud of his new quote,
but secretly wishing he could have added a swear word or two into it.
was apparent after only a few minutes from the house that they were being
followed. All four had varying abilities in reading tracks, but it was apparent
even to the most novice of them. A rat was moving about the premises last night
and it was as large or larger than a full sized dog.
a quick analysis with no time wasted, the creature followed their trail there,
walked around the building a few times and then went back the way it came.
“Courtney hon, are your pistols loaded?” Maggy asked
there a round in the chamber?”
but mike said…”
care love, different ruled for a different life. Now’s about a good time to
chamber a round” Scott interrupted using his British accent to hide the fact
that he was scolding her. And just for god measure he checked his own weapons,
followed by the rest of the crew.
took point followed closely by Courtney; Maggy was at the rear where her UMP
could be put to good use.
They reached the outskirts of Sisters an old Baron less vill that used to
be a major tourist attraction. It wasn’t any longer. The main strip comprised
of six buildings and a few squats; a pawn shop, a bar, and a hotel lined one
side, and on the other was a barn, what passed for a sec office, and a brig.
horse, get caught, and go to jail.” Courtney interjected not at all happy
about the cleanliness of the town
goods, get drunk, and go to bed with whore” Jeremy countered attempting to get
a smile out of her.
with whore, get your dick cut off and she steals you jack.” Maggy smiled
we stay here or push on?”
dark in an hour.” Maggy replied
times four” Jeremy smiled “Say what’s the legal limit here Maggy?”
enough answer for me.” Out of the corner he spotted the creature. Small, black
and white, and full of teeth. “Fuck” with a speed that only years of martial
arts can develop he lashed out with his foot, catching the dog square in the
a yelp he diverted his attack and rushed into the hands of a now waiting Scott,
He had handled dogs before, many times, even trained a few. So what he did came
natural to him. Sliding an open hand under his jaw he curled his arm swiftly and
then straitened it again. It looked quite simple, in fact it really was, at the
end the small Border collie was laying on his back with Scott’s large hand at
it.” He snapped using his mind with out thinking.
Jeremy had seen Scott do this to his
dogs at home and it didn’t surprise him, but when the dog stopped snapping his
jaws and growling that was something new entirely.
boy.” Scott cooed petting the dog along the side of his face open hand in case
the dog tried to bite again. Then he let the dog go and stood up.
was Jeremy who spoke first but as he took a step forward the dog scrambled
in-between Scott’s legs bearing his teeth again. “Damn mutt. Only you would
make friends with such an evil bearing brat.”
friends with you didn’t I?” He countered
you!” He yelled nearly laughing
“Look alive” Maggy called out “Let me talk to them” All of them
including Courtney had there hands on cocked weapons.
you outlanders want in my town” A rugged half drunk voice called out from in
the doorway of the barn
stay on that side of the street, don’t want any trouble.”
I’m Sec boss for Sisters, You outlanders lookin’ fer trouble you’ll find
it at the end of Betsy.” He patted the barrel of his scattergun
“We are going to trade for a dinner and a night and then travel on, and
something like that would only cause needles bloodshed. The Umpire would take
this town’s population down to zilch in a few minutes. Betsy or not.” She
said pointing at her UMP. She had done this drill before, stand tall, look
proud, and don’t back down. Follow those rules and more often than not you’d
be left alone. Too week and people pick one you, too tough and then you end up
trying backing your words.
good. Old Hap will take your trade, if its good Alicia will cook you dinner and
rent you room. If its good enough she’ll even bed you, man boy child or
woman.” He smiled and then went back to his bottle.
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