BTCollins8

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Everything posted by BTCollins8

  1. I like the second part of this, though I think that Colovians would have their style be a mix of Nordic and Roman. Them being southern Nords isn't any fun
  2. Anything in particular we could clear up?
  3. I really like that line about resistance without thinking what they were resisting. That boils it down really nicely and succinctly. No problem
  4. I'm going to put my history major hat on here for a sec and try and explain this as best I can. There are a lot of reasons for the reverence of the South, but one major reason is the myth making and narrative shaping Confederate and Southern groups did after the war, from the mid to late nineteenth centuries and into the early twentieth centuries. There's a really good book about it called Race and Reunion: The Civil War in American Memory. A quote from that book lays it out pretty well: “In many ways, this is a story of how in American culture romance triumphed over reality, sentimental remembrance won over ideological memory.” Confederate groups, from veterans to widows to politicians, developed a sentimentalism toward the South. The North helped a lot in this, honestly, as there was a widespread reconciliation movement, as white Americans attempted to move past the Civil War. So you would have veterans from both sides attend events remembering the battles and trying to put their differences aside, basically talking about the 'nobility' and 'determination' of the combatants while ignoring slavery and ignoring African Americans. Race and slavery had been such a dividing force between the North and South so remembering that didn't suit the reconciliation they were going towards, and instead they left ideology behind so they could unite as Americans, which also fit well with the burgeoning American nationalism. Once Reconstruction ended and the Jim Crow laws were enacted, African-Americans were by and large disenfranchised and widely discriminated against. Another major reason was the "Lost Cause" mythos built up following the war. First it was focused on building up Robert E. Lee and talking about the war as a cause that could be defeated only by the overwhelming industrial might of the North, and that Southern resistance had been hard fought in spite of the odds. They also didn't stress the cause of slavery as much and instead focused on white supremacy, which they could keep fighting for by resisting Reconstruction, and through that they created a victory narrative in which they successfully fended off the North in allowing African-Americans to 'rule'. In the immediate aftermath they also created their own histories to combat what they saw as false Northern histories, forming groups and writing books from the Southern perspective. And they built statues and monument in the late 19th century and early twentieth century to local soldiers and people like Robert. E. Lee. When his statue was unveiled some in the North protested it, as they saw didn't like "liberal display of rebel flags" or the cult that had grown up around Lee, even in the North. Really, it has to do with the fact that people in the South continued to celebrate the South in ways that could deem the South's cause as more noble than it was and could ignore sticky issues like slavery while stressing things like white supremacy, which even many in the North agreed with because of the widespread racism. And they shifted towards talking and writing about the conflict as one of ideals about states rights vs. federalism. As the world wars passed and the Civil Rights movement kicked off, the flags and Confederacy became aspects of Southern heritage that white Southerners used to counteract the calls for integration and equality. Though they didn't advocate for slavery, they still clung to the white supremacy aspects that were trumpeted by the Confederacy. The Confederacy lost the Civil War but they won the battle over the memory of the Civil War. In this case, history was not written by the victors but by the losers. So now you have a fairly widespread belief that the Civil War was over states right and federalism, while ignoring that the state right they really cared about protecting was the right to own slaves. Basically, the reconciliation of the white Northerners and Southerners allowed the South to shape the narrative of the Civil War in a way that better reflected on them, and many people still buy into those ideas and the imagery associated with them.
  5. I've never understood the southern pride thing either, though much of my extended family likes to spout that stuff. The weirdest aspects of it are in those states, like West Virginia, who tout southern pride and yet their state came about because they (mostly) didn't support the South. But Lincoln himself didn't own slaves. His wife's family did but I haven't found a source that says he himself did. Though he wasn't exactly an fervent abolitionist like some at the time. He still believed blacks were inferior to whites, for instance, and wanted them to leave the US.
  6. I believed you on that part. I was confused as to why that would be embarrassing. Having an ancestor that fought in the Civil War is really cool, and even more so that's he was somewhat unique in being a Union soldier from a Southern state (assuming your ancestors lived in the South).
  7. Are you being sarcastic about that ancestor part? I'd love to know if any of my ancestors were soldiers in the Civil War. Especially if they fought for the North, since that would be pretty unique in Texas. The only people who really did were German immigrants, some of whom fled to Mexico. Some others that tried to flee were lynched for doing so.
  8. My favorite builds are a pure mage, sword and shield heavy armor knight type, and stealth archer. Those are the three main characters I've had. My favorite is probably a Breton sword and shield heavy armor knight with a little magic thrown in. Though I had a lot of fun with my Nordic mage build that was my most recent.
  9. Good posts Doc and Czar
  10. Really good post Doc!
  11. Good post Doc!
  12. Thanks Centurion! I'm glad you liked that plot line. And I'm glad you like the Bretons. I do wish I had had more magical influence evident in those earlier posts but I did get to show a lot of their politics and infighting. I also owe a lot to Doc for helping me do all that. He played Montrose and Traven, and High Rock wouldn't be near as interesting without his help. The religious character sounds interesting to me as well. Especially if it does tie into the Divine Order in some way. I'd like to see what might happen with these religious organizations cropping up in Skyrim and Cyrodiil. Could lead to some very interesting conflicts.
  13. I like what you've done with Roscrean. I'm not sure we've seen that level of detail here in anything that's been written so far. But I would say that it's better to let things be fleshed out naturally, like Witch suggested, rather than do any info dumping. And one thing to remember is that every detail you create may not end up in the posts themselves. At least not for a while. There's some High Rock stuff that I created a long time ago that's just never come up because it would be forced. Although I'm not going to claim I'm an expert on world building. I know I've forced or info dumped in the past. But these roleplays are all a learning process, and a living story, so I would say just know that if you do make any mistakes, they're opportunities to learn from and grow as a writer/creator.
  14. Great post y'all
  15. Thanks Doc!
  16. It would be really cool if they sent mercenaries after you. Although I could see how that would upset some people that don't want to be funneled toward the main quest. Maybe I need to murder some people on the down low. Since my character is a bit of an asshole he might take exception to some insult. But that seems risky. I guess I'll just have to avoid killing fiends and such. I have taken to letting ED-E kill ghouls, because of the karma. He mows them down pretty easily so I don't have to worry much. The NCR's expansionist tendencies are alarming enough that I like to go with House. Wild Card feels too anarchic and destabilizing, and Caesar's Legion isn't even really an option in my mind. I flip flop on House versus NCR. Mostly because I don't like House's authoritarianism, but I think letting the NCR regroup a bit and chill will help them in the long run. Plus, it'd suck to lose someone like House if you're rebuilding the world.
  17. I just now got to Novac and am doing the quest for Bright and his followers. My Courier is headed straight for Benny as fast as possible. I like playing a vengeance driven character, even though it does risk being lower leveled. I did make a slight detour to install Myers as sheriff, but that was partly so I could give one last **** you to the Powder Gangers before I moved on. I will say, staying Karma neutral has proved tough. Especially since killing certain enemies grants you positive karma. Looks like I'm going to have to steal more shit
  18. The Sheriff Lawrence was a light sleeper, and he usually only slept for five or so hours. He was the first one awake, besides Abbey and Linda, who had the last watch before daybreak. Lawrence wandered away from camp and relieved himself, then came back and started up the percolator coffee pot they had. As the water was brought to a boil, he thought about what Maxine was saying last night. For the life of him, he couldn’t figure out what might be in St. Louis. Though the trip never had a particular destination in mind, he never thought they’d go that far. He wondered if the plan was to go there all along, even though he had no idea why that would be the case. The bubbling of the coffee stopped him from speculating too much more, so he poured three cups and took them to the edge of camp. He knew Abbey and Linda would appreciate the morning pick-me-up as they finished their watch. He smelled his cup before taking a drink. Coffee reminded him of home. Not Horse Head, as that was too far away from the Gardens in east Texas that grew the only post-war coffee in the Republic. No, the coffee reminded him of Vault 38, where he spent his childhood. Though the coffee there was prepackaged and had a stale taste more often than not, he still remembered starting every morning off with a cup. Even the children, since the understaffing of the vault required that everyone worked to help maintain it. And the only way to get through a full day was to caffeinate heavily. After a few moments both Abbey and Linda arrived, and he gave them their coffee. “How nice,” Abbey said. She sipped hers, but recoiled quickly, her tongue lolling out of her mouth. “Fresh too. Nearly burned my taste buds off.” “Thanks,” was all Linda had to say. She took her cup and sipped at it around the cigarette hanging from her lips. She didn’t stop at all, just grabbed the cup as she made her rounds and kept going. Lawrence walked with Abbey a bit, so she wouldn’t shirk her guard duty. It was still before dawn, but the rest of the group would be up soon. Maxine liked to use every hour of light they had to travel. The birds were just waking up, their chirps calling out to each other from the spindly branches. The woods felt altogether different than when Lawrence was on duty last night, and he was glad for it. He liked that there was a little cheer in the air to start his day. “You think we’ll reach these Brotherhood lands today?” he asked. Abbey took a sip and ran a hand over her hair and down her black braid. She was a couple years younger than Lawrence, at 40. Her skin was a tawny brown and her face thin, with a few wrinkles forming around her mouth. “We should. Unless what those caravaners in Muskogee told us was dead wrong. But I’ve learned you can usually trust them.” “I guess the real question is, do you believe them about what those lands are like?” Lawrence asked. “I think I do believe them. Everywhere I’ve been was so different than the place I was before that. I don’t see why this Brotherhood of Steel couldn’t be as perfect as they said.” “I don’t know that I do. It sounds too good to be true.” “Even if it isn’t true, at least it’ll be interesting. Most people I’ve met don’t use the word utopia lightly.” “I suppose we’ll have to wait and see,” Lawrence said. “I’m excited to find out,” Abbey said with a small smile. Lawrence nodded and said, “Yeah, I guess I am too.” The eastern horizon was beginning to turn a dark blue, as the black of night faded away. Lawrence looked out at it and said, “I better be getting back to camp. People will be waking up soon and Maxine will be in a hurry.” “I’ll come with you. Maxine will want to go over the route anyway.” They got back to camp just as everyone was waking up. The only ones still asleep were Kim and Ezekiel. They were both curled up beneath their blankets, so Lawrence went ahead and poured them some coffee too and brought it over. He nudged them with his foot and gave them the cups once they’d sufficiently rubbed the sleep from their eyes. “Rise and shine,” he said. Ezekiel sat up and yawned, his hands rubbing the sleep from his eyes. He ran a hand over his face to wipe away the last vestiges of sleep, and then he pulled his coiled hair back into a short ponytail and put his red baseball cap on. He muttered his thanks as he began gathering his things up. Kim was a bit slower, initially not moving but with further prodding she too woke up. She quickly took the cup of coffee and drank a few sips before she went about fixing her blonde hair. She still looked asleep when Lawrence left. Guillermo was already brewing up another pot, and was warming up some biscuits to go along with their coffee and jerky. Though water was plentiful, their food supplies were getting on the meager side. Enough to make it to Wellstone, though, if the caravaners could be trusted like Abbey believed. After the next pot of coffee finished brewing and everyone had a cup, Maxine gathered them all around and pulled out their map. It was an old pre-war one, covered with a plastic film that kept it looking pristine. She placed a finger south of the town of Butler and north of the town where Roger died, which had once been called Rich Hill. “This is where we are. The Brotherhood border is somewhere to the north of us. We don’t know exactly where. But I want to reach it today. So we’ll be pushing for twenty miles. Which means we need to be ready to leave before sunrise.” There was some grumbling, but everyone stood and got to work. Guillermo handed out the breakfast to everyone, and Lawrence quickly ate his biscuits. He liberally dipped it in his coffee to soften it up, even though it didn’t help much. He pocketed his strips of beef jerky, figuring he could eat those on the road. Then he set off with a bucket to the river, where he filled it up and brought it back to top off the water barrel. When he got back the tarps were down and the trunks were being loaded on Pancho and Lefty’s back. By the time the sliver of orange sun appeared on the horizon, the group was heading north, and Lawrence was tearing off bites of jerky. ** It was about ten miles from their camp to the Brotherhood border. Ojo spotted it first, a series of signs that marked their arrival into the nation of the Brotherhood of Steel. But what the eyebot didn’t relay was that entering the lands wasn’t as relieving as they expected. When they passed by the signs, they were covered with graffiti and tribal markings. What once said You are now entering the lands of the Brotherhood of Steel now had **** YOU painted on top. There were no dead soldiers or dead tribals, which was a relief, but Maxine ordered they keep their guard up as the second part of their trek that day began. Guillermo handed out a few more strips of beef jerky, and everyone filled their canteens, but they didn’t stop for lunch. The land didn’t look any different than the so-called Lost Lands they’d just left, apparently given that name after the Brotherhood lost them. Or so the Middle Waters traders said. The lands the Brotherhood still had were unoccupied, as far as the Texans could tell. Kim said her Pip-boy was detecting some radio signals, but they heard only static when they tuned in. As they went on, they saw a few signs of civilization. Or, abandoned civilization. A few farm houses stood empty, their post-war walls falling in and nature retaking their fields with saplings and shrubs and grass. They saw a small brahmin herd amongst the trees, and a windmill off in the distance. It was nearing night when Ojo sent back a report that brought the caravan to a halt. Kim looked at her Pip-boy, and then ran up to Maxine. She put up her hand and the caravan stopped. Kim, Abbey, and Maxine talked for a few moments, until Maxine addressed everyone. “There’s someone up ahead. Butchering a deer. He’s armed but doesn’t have any guns. We’ll try and go around him.” Ezekiel immediately spoke up. “We should talk to him. If it’s just one man, and he doesn’t have any weapons, what harm could it do?” Maxine said, “We don’t have time to stop and talk with the locals. Especially since he could be part of a group of raiders. We still haven’t seen any sign of this Brotherhood. For all we know we’re still in raider territory.” “I think he’s right,” Abbey said. “He could tell us a little more about these lands, at least.” James said, “Seems like an ambush to me. Baiting travelers in with fresh meat. I’ve seen it before.” Reyna said, “Y’all are getting worked up over nothing. We more than outnumber him. Outgun him too. If we’re careful there shouldn’t be any danger.” Linda coughed and said, “We should watch him. See what he’s doing before we decide anything.” Ezekiel was adamant and his voice forceful. “We’re never going to know anything about where we are or how far Wellstone is or who the Brotherhood is if we’re afraid of every person we run across. We should at least try talking to him.” Maxine’s hard-set jaw showed her displeasure. But she relented and said, “Fine. We’ll talk to him. Lawrence, you come up here with us. Kim, tell Ojo to start circling around him in a wide circle. Check for any other people nearby. And you and Ezekiel stay by the brahmhorn. Keep your eyes open in the back, James, I don’t want us walking into an ambush.” The caravan moved out into the somewhat sparse forest, this time rearranged in case they encountered any threats. Lawrence thought it a bit ridiculous. One man without any guns hardly posed a threat to nine armed individuals. Still, Maxine was right about one thing. So far, they hadn’t seen hide or hair of the Brotherhood. Soon enough they saw the man through the trees, standing behind a stag hanging by its hind legs from a branch. They approached quietly, weapons drawn but not pointed at him. To avoid sneaking up on him and scaring him, Maxine stopped the group and called out, “Hello. We don’t want to hurt you. Just to talk.” Then, where only Abbey and Lawrence at the front of the column could hear, she added, “This is ******* stupid.” They saw part of his face poking out at the side behind the hanging stag. It wasn't enough to get a good look apart from that he had deep red hair tied behind his head. "Who are you?" the man called back. “Traders,” Maxine said, then after a slight pause added, “Explorers. We’re from far to the south. Outside the Belt.” "Exploring for what?" "Communities to trade with," Maxine said. "What about you? Who are you?" "A travelling blacksmith and occasional mercenary," he said, still mostly hiding behind the dead deer. "If you are traders, what do you got to trade?" "Horned lizard hides and mescal, mostly. The rest we already traded," Maxine said. "Got any gold, silver or fusion cells?" he asked. "We have some gold and silver. No fusion cells for trade." Maxine said. Lawrence could see she was getting restless, so he turned and looked at Guillermo to say something. Guillermo stepped forward and said, "We'd pay you for some of that meat. Been a while since we had anything fresh." Maxine shot Guillermo and Lawrence a venomous glance, but there was nothing to do now. She said, "We'd like to trade, if you would." "I'm willing to trade," he said. "If you are willing to stop standing around like you are about to assault me." "If we were going to assault you, you'd be dead already," Maxine said. "The fact you aren't should be evidence enough that we don't want to fight." Lawrence turned around and saw Ezekiel and Guillermo taking off their holsters and putting them in the cart. Maxine looked exasperated now, but she didn't try and stop them. Lawrence put his rifle in the cart but kept his pistol and holster on his belt. Soon enough the caravan members were mostly unarmed. Linda, James, and Maxine remained further back with the cart while everyone else approached the man. Lawrence asked, "We good now?" "I guess so," he said and slowly walked out from behind the dead deer. He was a man in his mid to late twenties with red hair and beard. The beard was a little scruffy but otherwise clean, as was the rest of his face. He looked like a decent person overall. He wore dark beige clothing with what looked like some kind of scarf in the same color, along with what looked like some kind of ski goggles around the neck. He wore leather boots, gloves and belt of post-war make. He held a dagger in his right hand. The dagger along with the gloves were covered in fresh blood. What was most odd was the sword he carried on the left side at the belt. "I'm Richard Smith," he continued with a small friendly smile. "I'd shake your hands but I doubt any of you would like to right now." "I reckon you're right about that," Lawrence said with a lopsided smile. "I'm Lawrence, by the way." Guillermo smiled and introduced himself as well, and told Richard who Linda, James, and Maxine were, since they had stayed with the cart. Ezekiel said, "I'm Ezekiel. If you've got any wounds that need looking at, let me know." "But you can call him Doc," Reyna said. "Or Zeke. I haven't quite decided which I like more. I'm Reyna." Kim asked, "Did you notice anything about the deer? Any mutations? What about its herd? Or was it alone?" "Smarty Pants there is Kim," Reyna said. Abbey took a step forward to get a closer look at the sword. "I'm Abbey. Interesting weapon you've got there. Are swords normal around here?" "Nice to meet you," said Richard. "And to answer your questions; I got no wounds that needs attention. I saw the deer grazing the grass alone near the ruined town, and it looks quite healthy and 'normal' to me. And I haven't met anyone else carrying a sword like mine. Seen raiders carrying all kinds of weird improvised melee weapons though." Richard went back to carving up the deer. "Now how much gold and silver can you offer? I can give you the liver for free though." Guillermo walked forward to inspect the carcass. As quartermaster, he was in charge of buying and rationing out their supplies. Lawrence knew, though, that Guillermo didn't know much of anything about butchering or meat cuts, but this was all part of a performance. Guillermo was nothing if not a performer. Abbey knew this too, so she stepped forward and said, "We'd like the steak cuts from back here. We can fry that up pretty easily. And any lean cuts you have. We'll dry that out and make some pemmican. That'll keep better than anything else. We'll also need some fat too." Guillermo feigned offense at Abbey stepping in, then turned to Richard and said, "How does one gold for all she just named sound?" "Is that one gold bar then?" Richard said with a little chuckle. He then plucked out the liver and held it out to Guillermo. "You still want it?" Guillermo backed up a few steps. "No thank you. And one gold coin, unless this meat will wipe the ugly from Lawrence's face." Lawrence punched Guillermo in the arm even as he laughed. Abbey said, with a bit of a wistful look in her eyes. "If we had more salt than we do and a few onions I'd take the liver. But you have to prepare that thing right, otherwise it'd be like eating raw radroach." "As you wish," said Richard and threw the liver behind himself towards the pile of entrails he had already removed. "This is a rather prime meat I would say. And enough to feed you for at least the coming week or two. If I got this to market I could certainly sell all of this for ten gold. Though I'll give you a fair deal and say five gold." Guillermo noticeably kept his gaze off the pile of discarded entrails and organs. "It's a good thing we don't want it all, then. Just the cuts Abbey pointed out." Abbey added, "We couldn't eat the rest, or preserve it, before it spoiled. We're on a tight schedule and don't have time to smoke more." "Tight schedule? I thought you said you were explorers. I didn't know explorers were in such a hurry to get anywhere. I thought you just wandered till you found something interesting," said Richard. Reyna threw a thumb back towards Maxine, who was talking with James and Linda by the cart. "Tuerta over there doesn't like to make detours or stop except to sleep." "It means one-eyed in Spanish," Lawrence said, seeing Richard's confusion. "We're explorers, but we're trying to find routes to places to trade with. We're headed to a city we were told about, called Wellstone. She wants to get there sooner rather than later. We've already been gone a couple months or so." Lawrence knew that they might not be done traveling after finding Wellstone, now that he knew Maxine planned on going to St. Louis. Even if the others didn't know. Though Wellstone never was the stated end goal, he couldn't imagine why they would need to travel farther. If the Brotherhood lands were as described, they would have found two nations to trade with between them and the Nation of the Middle Waters. Better than he expected. There didn't seem to be any reason why they'd need to keep exploring. "I know of the city," said Richard. "Was heading there myself but got a bit sidetracked. There's a small town called Harvil half a day's walk north from here. If you got some room on that wagon I figure we can sell the leftover meat to the local inn. Then share the profit equally." "We'd have to ask Maxine. She's the boss around here," Lawrence said. "Why don't you finish butchering and we'll talk to her about it." "Alright. But don't forget we're not quite done haggling about the meat you want." Lawrence, Guillermo, Reyna, and Ezekiel walked over to Maxine, James and Linda. Abbey stayed behind with Richard to help him butcher the deer, while Kim stayed to inspect it and its stomach contents. Maxine had her typical stern look on her face, and Lawrence could tell she didn't like that they'd stopped. She asked, "What do y'all want?" "He wants to load up the meat on our cart and head to a village up the road. He says we can sell it and split the profits," Lawrence said. "That's not going to happen," Maxine said. "We've wasted enough time stopping here. And we'll have to travel even further before we camp since there's a pile of guts over there. Who knows what that'll attract." "You're kidding, right?" Ezekiel said, his brow furrowed. "He just wants to travel with us and help us make some money. Not to mention sell us the freshest meat we've had in weeks." "No, I'm not kidding. We don't know him, much less this village he wants to lead us to. It's too risky and downright stupid," Maxine said. James spit out a dark glob of tobacco juice. "I still think this is an ambush waiting to happen. Or he's a thief." "I doubt that. But we shouldn't bring him along. He'll only slow us down," Linda said. "What's the matter with y'all?" Ezekiel asked. "He's knows the area and he's been nothing but friendly." "I'd figure you'd be slower to trust people, after that business in Germantown," Linda said. She was referring to why Ezekiel joined the expedition. He'd been working as a doctor in Germantown, a place of casinos, bars, and brothels. Run by powerful bosses that owned those businesses. Ezekiel discovered one of them was cutting their drinks with dangerous chemicals and making some people sick. When he reported it, he was nearly killed, and had to flee north. And, eventually, flee the Republic. There was a price on his head in Texas. "I trust people fine. There were plenty of people there that agreed with me and helped me. It's the selfish and heartless ones I don't trust," Ezekiel said. James stepped forward and said, "You've got a problem with us, Doc?" Lawrence could see Ezekiel forming a fist, even though he didn't have a chance against the bigger and stronger James. Lawrence stepped between them and said, "Look, let's all calm down." Maxine put a hand on James' shoulder and pulled him back. Ezekiel's fist relaxed. "Everyone is getting worked up over nothing," Reyna said. "Most of us think we should let him tag along. We'll keep and eye on him, and we still have Ojo to scout ahead. We'll be fine." Guillermo said, "He’ll also knows more about the Brotherhood than we do, so we won’t be walking in blind. And we could do with fresh meat and some more money." Maxine was quiet for a few moments, her hands crossed over her chest. "Fine. But y'all will be in charge of making sure he doesn't steal anything. Tell him to be ready to move out in fifteen minutes." They walked back over to Richard and Abbey, who were mostly finished butchering the deer by now. Lawrence said, "You can come with us. But we want to leave soon, so we can get as close to this Harvil place and away from the guts before we camp for the night." "Sure," said Richard with a shrug. "How about two gold for the meat?" he then continued like if there hadn't been any interruption in the bartering. Guillermo smiled and said, "I can do that, if you tell us all you know about these Brotherhood lands once we camp for the night." "Sure, I can do that. Been talking to quite a few people on my travels. So I should know a thing or two you might find useful." Lawrence went and led Pancho and Lefty to the rest of the group. They moved some of their supplies around and packed the meat away in a trunk. Richard placed the hide and the antlers on the cart, then fetched his backpack and bow and quiver. Kim recalled Ojo and sent it ahead, and the group set off. It was nearing sundown, so they didn't travel far. They passed by the ruins of Archie, which looked like it'd been somewhat recently inhabited. Like the farms they saw to the south, though, it was now abandoned. Maxine stopped them on the north side of the river than ran north of Archie, and they made camp in the dark. Lawrence, James, and Kim went through the refilling of the water barrels, while Guillermo started to cook their steaks. Abbey was in charge of drying the lean meat to grind up for the pemmican, which they would mix with some dried fruit, nuts, and fat to make a protein rich food source. Soon, they were all gathered around the cooking top and fire, with Maxine and James on watch outside the camp. They ate their steaks and biscuits, the best meal they'd had in over a month. Lawrence thought it might be the best meal he'd had in his whole life. Well worth two gold. After they finished eating, with the meat still drying over the fire, Abbey asked, "So, where are you from? Most people don't have weapons like that in the wastes." "Far away," said Richard. "Somewhere northwest I think. Wandered quite aimlessly my first few years on the road though." "Is there a lot of metalworking there?" Kim asked. She had her journal and was taking notes, like she'd done most of the trip on everything from water radiation to soil fertility to weather patterns. "Why do you ask?" said Richard. "Your sword. Abbey mentioned it earlier and you said no one around had one like it. And it's clearly not an improvised weapon," Kim said. "I imagine wherever it was made had some blacksmithing capabilities. Access to ore and higher-level techniques and knowledge. I read a book once about metal working that said-" "Kim," Ezekiel said. In the firelight Lawrence could see her cheeks flush a little, but only because he was sitting next to her. She said, "Oh. Sorry." "Well I will say that smithing runs in the family. But if you don't mind, I'm not that keen to talk about them or my homeland," said Richard with a slightly painful expression. "Oh. I'm sorry, I didn't realize..." Kim went back to writing in her journal. Lawrence thought he saw Ezekiel and Kim share a glance, but he couldn't tell from the shadows the fire cast. Whereas Richard's pain was evident in his voice and his expression. "What about these lands?" Linda asked, motioning to the countryside around them. "We've heard this Brotherhood of Steel is powerful. That they have a tight control over everything, especially technology, and the people have all sorts of comforts because of it. Sounds too good to be true." "From what I've gathered," said Richard with a visible ease at the change of topic. "Is that the Brotherhood of Steel is the technocratic overlords of these lands. They have a large and rather well equipped army, and every village, town and city within their lands answers to them." "Overlords? So they don't choose their leaders?" Guillermo asked. "Towns seem to get to choose their local government," said Richard with a shrug. "How the leadership inside the Brotherhood works I have yet to figure out. Doubt they choose their leaders though as I heard the entire Brotherhood is ruled by an immortal leader named Barnaky. Word is he's been in charge for almost a hundred years." "Don't folks know ghouls aren't immortal?" Lawrence asked. "I'm pretty sure he's not a ghoul," said Richard. "The Brotherhood hates any and all kinds of mutants with a passion. Most people I've talked to said Barnaky is hooked up to some kind of machine that keeps him alive. Though a few have also said there is no Barnaky and he's only an illusory figurehead conjured up by the Brotherhood's elite." "Great, a whole nation of pendejos like the Alamo Cult," Reyna said. "A machine keeps him alive?" Ezekiel asked. "What level of technology does the Brotherhood have?" "Pretty high from what I hear. Apparently they have robots, factories, trains, power armor and the like. Only seen seen a few of their robots though. I thought yours were one of theirs till I saw the letters on its side," said Richard. Guillermo let out a low whistle. Abbey said, "I've never been somewhere with that level of tech." Kim asked, "How did they manage to obtain all that? The manpower, the coordination required. It's astounding. Imagine all the knowledge they must have." Lawrence could feel the pit in his stomach. He was impressed like everyone else, but he couldn't help but linger on the mutant hate. He'd met a few ghouls in his lifetime and never could see why people had problems with them. A whole nation that hated them didn't sound too welcoming. But a thought struck him, and he asked, "What other kinds of mutants are there besides ghouls? Since they hate them all, apparently." "There's the so called super mutants. Big, tough, green people that were created by... something," said Richard and did a small shrug. "What the hell have we wandered into?" Linda said. She took out a cigarette and lit it, then got up and left towards the edge of the camp. Everyone was quiet for a few moments after that. The branches in the fire cracked and the smoked swirled into the night sky. Pancho and Lefty gave a quiet moo, and a few birds chirped out in the trees. Ezekiel broke the silence and asked, "What's Wellstone like? Assuming you've been." "I haven't been there yet. Heard it's rather nice, for the most part. Though I've also heard there's been anti-Brotherhood rebels cropping up in the city and causing trouble," said Richard. "Out of the wastes and into a war," Guillermo said. Maxine and James returned then, which meant it was Lawrence and Reyna's turn on watch. It was getting late anyway, so the fire was put out and everyone headed off to bed. As Lawrence made his rounds, he couldn't help but think the world was far stranger than he ever expected.
  19. I'm on my old PS3. Which isn't too bad all things considered. Though it does get janky at times and the graphics aren't the best. Still, it's New Vegas, so I'm not gonna complain.
  20. One more question. What skills do you pick?
  21. This is all extremely helpful! Thanks a ton. I never know what to do with my SPECIAL points and usually feel like I don't distribute them well. So I'm definitely going to follow this.
  22. Hey Doc I was actually just about to start a new build. What was the distribution you mentioned a while back, heavy on the Luck side? Is that better used if you use VATs?
  23. I'm having a hard time coming up with three I like more than the ones you named for Fallout. I could see Randall Clark, Father Elijah, Benny, and Hanlon making the list too. For TES, I've only played Skyrim, so my pool to choose from is pretty small. That said, I wouldn't pick Ulfric. I've just never liked him that much even if he is a deep and well written character. I like Erandur, Runil, and Serana.
  24. For Alan, Old Man Atom. For Lawrence, Sundown/Ballad of Bill Thaxton. I've put together a lot of different songs I want to feature during the course of the roleplay. Most western songs, though a few 'atomic' songs. And just some good ones from the 50's and 60's.