Ragged breathing permeates the pitch black. Cold. Fear. Suddenly, a bright flash and resonating bang. An infant cries in the distance and the sound carries off. Moving toward cries, the atmosphere becomes surreal, thick, the surrounding space expands to infinite lengths. The noise seems to come from every direction, and confusion and panic start to settle in….
Snapping upwards in bed, Karl awakes. He rubs his eyes, trying to shake off the nightmares that have hounded him since he left Sanctuary. The memory of losing Shaun sits fresh in his mind, like every morning. Throwing his legs to the side, he stands and stretches, the murmur and background noise of the settlement bringing him back to reality. After donning his suit jacket, he grabs a Nuka Cola and some yao guai meat from the fridge and makes his way outside to the stove.
"I'd rather be out murdering a pint, but this'll do," Cait greets Karl from her post overlooking the entrance to Hangman's Alley. Since leaving the combat zone to join him on his quest, Karl has noticed that while her brash attitude on the outside hasn't diminished, she has grown reliable and supportive, a worthy companion. His supply of whiskey and Gwinnet Pale Ale would surely keep her deep in cups for days, but he kept that under lock and key for safety. He throws the meat in the stove with some carrots and tatos, pops open the Nuka, pockets the cap, and strolls downstairs to the market stalls. S and Judy have their stalls open, weapons and general goods, respectively.
"I'm sure I've got what you're looking for, " says Sam as Karl approaches. Perusing the stocks, he finds some .50 caliber and .45 ammunition, just what he needs to bring the hurt on the raiders stalking the streets. The purchase is made, and he grabs his finished meal from the oven before sitting in the reading room to relax. Flipping through an old Grognak, he finishes his meal and absently fiddles with his Pip-Boy, half planning his next outing. He is quickly brought out of it by a whistling sound coming closer. He stands just in time to lose his footing from an explosion outside.
Off the porch, he sees the culprit. Rust Devil's. Three raiders and two robots. The thrown grenade knocked Cait around, but she composes herself in time to take out one of the raiders. Karl reacts. From his high ground, he lobs a pulse grenade kept onhand for just such a situation. Having drawn attention now, the robots look up and aim, but too late. The electric flash pulses and the robots shake and shut down. Irritated at having his calm morning interrupted, Karl runs back to his storage for a surprise. Inside his weapons locker, he scrounges for the perfect tool: The Deliverer. A handful of rounds and a syringe from a cabinet and he is back out the door, running toward the porch edge again.
He slams the syringe in his arm as he jumps, weapon in hand. The violent concoction that is Psychojet surges through his system. Wide-eyed and frenzied, he raves as he falls through the air, his gun fixed on the remaining raiders just outside the alley. As it in slow motion, he unloads a whole clip into one. Several bullets richocet off the thick armor, but three that matter hit their mark. Two to the throat, one in the head, he falls over, motionless. Enraged and terrified, the final for rounds the corner, rifle in hand. He isn't ready though. In his rage, Karl has reloaded and already fixed on the wall the raiders hides behind. When his head pokes around, Karl activates his V.A.T.S. and targets the enemies dome. Two well placed shots circumvent any armor, piercing the rust devil's skull and eliminating the threat.
As the jet wears off, he hears Cait again.
"Looks like they're gone."
For now, they were. But these Rust Devil's have been about for some time. Mr. Valentine was his intended next visit, but the harassment from these foes has to stop if he will safely accomplish anything in the Commonwealth. Digging through his pack, he finds a holotape he picked off a previous defeated band of robot and raider nuisances. The Mechanist. If anyone can explain, or better yet, stop, these Rust Devils. It would have to be him. Or her. Or it. Shaun and Nick would have to wait. This immediate menace needed tending to.
–Wanted to tell my character's survival story but didn't know how to start. Hope this is a decent little intro. I'll be detailing his journey to deal with the Rust Devil's and what that entails. Not a pro writer, but I try to be good. Open to criticism and whatnot. Hope I have some readers that enjoy it. More to come.
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