the fallout kansas city story line
**The best part about our storyline is that it will be forever changing based on the actions of our players. Each game will add a new addition to the story and alter parts of future games.**
It begins in the ruins of a once-great city ....
The year is 2295. The Great War is over, but everywhere, the effects are still evident. Kansas City sits in ruins, a shell of its former self. Inside the cities, boundaries reside the peaceful ghoul town of Gravestone. Its inhabitants protect themselves from the violent mutants that roam the ruins along with the feral ghouls, looking to kill and eat anyone unlucky enough to be caught. Most of the mutant bands were broken by the Brotherhood years ago. Few of the Brotherhood remain in the city to scavenge for supplies and tech, having moved their base of operations beyond the inner city. The edge of the city is infested by bands of raiders, slavers, and gang members; all preying on each other and innocent bystanders. The raiders have long been fighting the feral ghouls and mutants for what little food, medicine, and ammunition is still to be found within the city limits. In order to survive, a local band of Raiders, the Paseos, led by Valdez, made a deal with a large North Kansas City slaver operation, the Fleshmen. Their pact bonded the two groups. With their growing strength, they soon expanded their area, using diplomacy and mostly force to incorporate conquered tribes and gangs. By allying with Valdez and the Paseos, the Fleshmen expanded their slaving operation and their wealth. However, this large band of men was just untrained thieves and slavers, lacking proper organization; until the day remnants of Western tribes wandered into Kansas City.
This wasn't the average rabble; these were men from The Legion and members of skilled gangs like the Vipers, and Khans. These were fighters and killers, and they willingly joined the Paseos. The new recruits were offered leadership roles in exchange for passing on their knowledge to the Paseos. Soon, as they became an effective fighting force, the Paseos spread like a plague around upper Kansas City.
Unwilling to confront the feral ghouls and powerful mutants in the city center ruins, the Paseos had to look elsewhere for the supplies they desperately needed. Their numbers swelled as they spread East and South of the city center and Gravestone. Valdez became frustrated with his inability to gain not only the supplies need for the survival, but the power and wealth he coveted. Conceiving a plan, he spent several weeks devising and executing his idea. Conclave of the Paseos and Fleshmen was announced, and all gathered to celebrate the alliance. As Valdez rose to speak, he praised their growing power and strength. He declared their throng would be unstoppable if united under a single leader. Valdez pulled out a pistol and shot the Fleshmen chieftain in the head, as the entire faction watched in stunned silence. The Paseos quickly overpowered the angry Feshmen. Valdez declared the Fleshmen name defunct. all would now be Paseos, and he, Valdez, would rule them.
Valdez's lust for domination and wealth were being realized even as his need for supplies and food were not. A chance meeting with an unlucky farmer changed that. The farmer was about to be sold into slavery. he had overheard the Paseos complaining about the lack of supplies and their inability to locate a steady supply source. Negotiating for his release, the farmer told them he knew where the Paseos could find what they needed. The guards took the farmer to Valdez. Valdez agreed to grant freedom to the farmer in exchange for the information.
The farmer told Valdez about lush land, North of the city outskirts. There, town of varying size lived in relative peace and grew large strong crops and herds of livestock. Drawing a map, the farmer marked a few chosen areas of prosperous farming towns he had visited. From a traveler the farmer had also heard of an old supply depot South of the city. The traveler had mentioned that this depot was filled with ammunition and medical supplies. With this information, Valdez realized the Paseos could acquire their needed supplies and build an empire. Valdez was ecstatic, and, to keep the farm from repeating his information to others, he executed the farmer instantly.
The following day, Valdez readied his men to scout the Northern and Southern locations the farmer had mentioned. As scouts were chosen, they were assigned to either farm or depot details. Their tasks were to locate and report, so a strategy could be formulated. The scouting parties were comprised of the most trusted Paseos raiders, and they were led by experienced Legion men. Morale was high, but the scouts were to find an easy victory was unattainable.
As they trekked, the Northern scouts found the wastelands vanishing. Vegetation started becoming a common sight, and small farms and homesteads dotted the territory. The brunt of the Great War damaged the City, the outlying rural areas recovered more quickly. The raider scouts found clean drinking water sources and safe food as they traveled further from the city wastes. By agreement, the Northern scouts divided; one group headed further North while the second headed East.
The Eastern scouts headed for a small dot on the map known as Orrick. A small town before the war, it had endured a period of abandonment in the aftermath of destruction. But, residents returned to the town as life returned to the soil. The residents created a new town borne in the decaying ruins of the former, and they kept its old name. The large, dirty, decrepit "Welcome to OrricK" sign had survived the destruction, and the residents saw it as a good omen.
Life in Orrick resumed its prewar pace. The citizens farmed and traded on the main road. Large fences and walls of rubble protect the fledgling town from attack; raiders, mutants, and wild animals had populated the area when the citizens had retaken the land. It was a peaceful setting, and the Paseos scouts were satisfied that a small force could overpower the town in less than a day. the scouts returned to Valdez to make their report
The Northern scouts encountered a different scenario. Their destination was marked in the map as simply "The Base." To the raiders dismay, "The Base", actually called the Town of Forlorn Hope, was enclosed by tall fences, with open, flat farmland surrounding every side. There would be no sneaking up close for the Paseos.
Inside the fences, a small town bloomed on a former military base. It was a perfect location; providing not only protection but fertile land around it on the former pre-war farms. There were few enemies around Forlorn Hope for the citizens to worry about. Mostly mutated animals with the occasional minor raider or ghoul threat. They were mostly a peaceful farming community with a small police force and a civilian defense militia for larger threats.
The Paseos crept as close as they could without being detected. Morale was high, as they were confident that, though it might be a challenge, their violent tactics would win any fight against the inhabitants in Forlorn Hope. Their new Legion training should secure victory against any local militia. Peering through binoculars to best gauge the situation, a former Legion member was greeted by a familiar sight; soldiers clad in brown and tan, these soldiers were known to the Legion. Those well trained, professional fighters were men of The Republic.
The Republic was a growing nation with roots in a small Western wasteland town. Offering freedom and protection, they began conquering; not with bullets and guns. They changed hearts and minds. Few towns offered resistance to their ideology. The Republic's protection came not only from their army; a stable government secured their lands. The Republics' soldiers cleared the wastes of raiders, wild animals, tribes, and mutants. All fled before the mighty Republic until they met The Legion.
The Legion was a violent gang, not unlike the Paseos, yet with more power and vast territories. It was The Legion who challenged The Republics Eastern expansion. The Legion and The Republic fought several times. Finally outside New Vegas, The Republic crushed The Legion, and liberated all the settlements in Legion territory.
In the fifteen years since The Legions final defeat, The Republic has slowly worked its way Eastward, searching for fertile land to support their growing population. They controlled much of what was know as Kansas and used this land for grain farming. After hearing rumors of equally fertile lands just over the border in Missouri, The Republic followed a guide to The Base. Offering protection and stability, The Republic convinced the local population to join the nation.
The sight of The Republic soldiers caused The Legion survivors to pause their assessment. Their experiences had taught them to treat The Republic as a serious enemy. The Paseos scouts left Forlorn Hope and made their report to Valdez. Valdez had some clout as a major player in the local area, but he knew The Republics' full army could crush him like the bug he was. After consideration, Valdez decided that if the Paseos struck at The Republic force at Forlorn Hope, the Paseos could beat them. There would not be time for The Republic reinforcements to march from former Kansas, and the Paseos could deal with those troops as they arrived. The for Legion centurions counseled against this plan, but Valdez did not listen. his lust for control blinded him to their advice.
The Southern Paseos scouting unit encountered many hardships on their march South. Two raiders were killed by mutants during their long journey to the barren waste surrounding The Depot. At the beginning of the Great War, the State government had used The Depot as a supply base.
Within The Depot the military, stored food, clothing, medical supplies, while also using it for an armory stocked full of guns and ammunition. It was meant to provide emergency supplies to the local population in times of civil unrest. After the fighting stopped, people began to settle in the area, eventually naming their town The Depot, after its former use. Unlike the peaceful Northern settlements, The Depot had copious experience fighting raiders, slavers, mutants, and beasts. Instead of string enclosing walls, a heavily armed militia protected the civilians and supplies. A militia that continued their training using old military books and videos. They became not only town protectors, but a fierce guerilla force. The Paseos were unable to remain inconspicuous to The Depot militia and a firefight ensued. Three more Paseos scouts died before the raiders made a hasty retreat.
Valdez listened to the combined reports. He knew he could not afford to split his forces to capture the two locations simultaneously. He concluded that he would leave a small but vicious force to secure his city territory. He would then send the bulk of his fighters on a double mission; secure one location then march on the other. His final decision was the hardest; food first or supplies? He weighed the pros and cons of striking The Depot and Forlorn Hope. The Town of Forlorn Hope had food his men desperately needed. The supplies at The Depot could help the Paseos win Forlorn Hope; however, he might use too many of the supplies fighting for the food. The loss of the supplies could mean a loss in any future battles with The Republic.
Valdez made his decision.
Assembling his officers, he laid out their options and let them discuss each point. Then with absolute certainty and authority, Valdez told them where they would strike first ....
Game 1 story addition: The Paseos Quest for Supplies
Valdez decided on a raid to the South. Assembling his commanders, he picked a leader for this raider team, Amanda. Collecting a strong force of volunteers, the Paseos started off in grand style. That is they had a massive party filled with food, drinking, and violence. As they staggered out the following morning, they were unknowingly being trailed. A small team of soldiers from the Republic were under orders to follow, and if possible, hurt the efforts of the Paseos. The Republic knew from spies that the Paseos were after some pre-war military supplies, but they didn't know to which former supply base they were headed. The trip down South was slow and measured as the raiders took every opportunity to harass and steal from the locals. They did so under orders from Valdez himself, who wanted to spread fear and let these people know the Paseos were the ones in charge. After days of tracking the Paseos the Republic soldiers received a break; they happened upon a drunk Paseos raider, who had fallen behind.
Pouncing at the chance, Major Kemper grabbed the raider and after some healthy, painful interrogation, the Republic team learned of the Paseos destination. They were headed towards a former Waterpark, nicknamed The Depot. Having their captive mark the location on a map, they tied him to a tree and left him to his fate. The Republic forces acted quickly, by cutting the Paseos force and rushing ahead of them; they made it to the park almost two days in advance to warn the locals and help set up a defensive position.
The local Militia leader, Farmer Green, was at first skeptical and unsure of the Republic soldiers. He thought it was a possible ruse in order to spy out the hidden arms and to steal them if possible. Then as reports from terrified civilians started pouring into town of contact with the Paseos, he no longer doubted the Republic's claims. With little time to lose, they acted quickly to set up a defense of the park. The Republic helped to direct the placement of several mines at the park entrance they believed the Paseos would use to attack. As the Paseos approached the park, the found a flurry of activity in expectation of their arrival. Seeing soldiers of the Republic on the park walls only heightened their fury and rage. Camping outside of the park's walls they prepared their assault. The following morning, they gathered their forces and waited for the right moment. Noticing most of the soldiers and militia moving off of the walls, the Paseos struck. Quickly, they advanced into the waterpark, hoping to overwhelm before the defenders could muster a proper resistance. The first Paseos fell to the well-placed mines outside the park. They didn't stop, dashing over their own dead towards victory. The Paseos quickly swarmed over the walls and captured a good portion of the park. They were even able to locate the much needed medical supplies being stored inside. Though they wounded a local trader inside, everything else seemed to be going well for them. That is until the Militia and Republic forces gathered their men and were able to drive the raiders back out. As the survivors to their camp, they gathered up more of their own troops, reorganized, and continued to assault the park.
After their initial success, they were unable to gain a good foothold inside the park. Fully alert and ready, the defenders didn't let down their guard again.
In response, the Paseos resorted to raiding the local homes and farms outside the protection of the park walls. This created havoc for the people beyond the help of the Militia, unable to defend themselves. The Paseos also met up with a small group of Mercs. Being hired as extra guns the Mercs proved themselves to be both useful and untrustworthy. They sold themselves to both sides during the conflict in order to enrich their lives. The Paseos finally caught a break, locating not only a key that opened a locked box containing the passcode to enter a hidden room but the directions to the hidden room itself. Inside were enough arms and ammunition to equip a small army; exactly what the Paseos were after. Sadly for them, the key was lost after one of their raiders, with the key in his pocket, was found dead by the Militia. Though a setback, this did not end their resolve, and a truce was set up in order to get what they wanted by peaceful means. If they could get the key and the passcode holotape, then they would be able to resort back to violence and force to capture the park. During this truce, some of the raiders entered the town and scouted it out. They also took the time to sell some of their stolen goods to local and traveling traders. None of the traders cared for the Paseos especially the Jesse James Traveling Trader, whom the Paseos had attacked twice. Yet caps were caps, regardless of where they came from. As the truce came to a close, Major Kemper escorted the Paseos leader Amanda, out of the park.
Her guards had become too lax and had left in advance of their leader. Taking the chance given, Major Kemper shot Amanda in the back killing her. Any hope of a future truce died at that moment. The raiders, now filled rage at the betrayal. lashed out in endless attacks. The Paseos second-in-command too over, but as more of their raiders fell dead, she decided to halt further assaults for the day.
Inside the waterpark, Farmer Green hatched a plan to trick the Paseos. Enlisting the help of wandering Vault Dwellers, he schemed to sell the key and locked passcode box to the Paseos. Yet unknown to them, Farmer Green had removed the holotape with the hidden room passcode. The following morning, the attack resumed.
Out of nowhere the Paseos got a break, or so they thought. One of the Mercs stole the locked box, and the Paseos were able to purchase both box and key. It was a hollow victory as the box was empty. The attack continued and both sides were starting to wear down. Knowing that they could not holdout forever, Farmer Green came to a final solution. Calling for one more truce, he grabbed a GECK from their science lab. Fully understanding the potential for this device to give and take life, he went off alone to end the fight. Meeting with the Paseos leader, he slipped as far away from the park as he could. With her watching alongside him, Farmer Green set off the GECK. The raiders, soldiers, and civilians watched as a large explosion and flash of light shot out from the field. Not only were Farmer Green and the Paseos leader was killed so were some hapless bodyguards.
Mostly leaderless and disheartened, the Paseos retreated from the park. After collecting their remaining forces, they began their return trip to the city.
After the successful defense of the Waterpark, Major Kemper took his squad and returned to the Republic outpost in former Kansas. Pleased by the results, his commander promoted him to Colonel Kemper.
The Militia leader, Farmer Green, was killed in the GECK blast. In the end, he was able to protect the park and the hidden military supplies his people depended on so heavily. The Militia forces were able to secure a sorely needed food supply crate. The setting of the GECK had turned their semi-fertile fields into an almost Eden.
For all the efforts of the Militia to defend what they had, they also paid a high price for victory. The remaining Militia forces celebrated, but the party was short-lived. The inability of the Militia to break out of their Waterpark stronghold left the countryside open to raiders. The Paseos used the opportunity to strip the population of anything valuable. When money and goods ran short, they started taking the people - chaining them up and marching them North into slavery. After their loss, the Paseos sent a few teams to finish the work of bringing ruin to all associated with the Militia. The Militia forces were too weak and worn to stop them. Though they had their new Eden, there were few people left to enjoy it. Those who had escaped capture by the Paseos either reclaimed their homes or moved on to "peaceful" areas. Some of the locals blamed both the Paseo and the Republic for their troubles. Meeting one night in the ruins of a house, these Militia soldiers and civilians formed a new organization; one they dubbed "The Black Flag." They resolved to never again be the victims or pawns of others, declaring their lands belong to neither the Paseos nor the Republic but to the people of former Missouri. Swearing to resist all who threaten their sovereignty, they secretly spread the word from town to town, recruiting for their cause.
The Paseos limped back to the city. Valdez flew into a rage over his raiders failure, as well as having lost one of his leaders to Republic trickery. Standing before his people, he vowed revenge. Valdez's temper was only calmed after he claimed the loot his raiders had collected. The money, goods, slaves, and much needed medical supplies were able to help him fund a collection of arms and ammunition for his next strike.
In the end, the only real winners of the waterpark raid were the few Mercs and traders on hand. Their dealings in goods and services netted them much wealth from all sides of the fight.
The war would go on, and there was no end in sight.
Game #2 addition: Poking the Bear
Welcome to the town of Forlorn Hope. It took many years of building up a prosperous town scratched out of the wastes; creating a fruitful farming community that was the envy of the locals. Yet for all of the time, hard work, and extreme effort, it was all for nothing. The town that had once had a bright future was brought to its knees in only two days; two days in which the town found itself ripped apart by a power struggle.
The day it all began seemed no different than any other. A chilly rain had driven most of its citizens indoors for cover. The detachment of Republic troops was stationed nearby as they continued their efforts to form a lasting alliance with the town. Some locals had wondered into the trading post for supplies. A few Mercs from distances unknown and a doctor from an underground vault had all drifted into town over the last few days.
Having travelers wasn’t uncommon in Forlorn Hope. They often came in looking to trade items or to purchase much-needed foodstuffs. Yet something about today felt different, and the Mercs had already placed the townspeople on edge. These guns for hire usually followed the money, and for them money often came from death.
As noon approached, a scout for the Republic squad saw a large band of armed people moving towards the town. As they drew closer, he clearly saw their red skeleton flag waving in the breeze; the Paseos! He quickly relayed the information to his commander, Col. Kemper. In turn, Kemper rushed off into town to inform the locals of the raiders. The Town Council wasn’t sure which course to take. They certainly didn’t want to bring ruin to their town over any dispute between the Republic and Paseos. They called up their Militia to stand at the ready but they took a passive stance, refusing to pick a side in this fight. They had their own problems with which to deal.
Jet had made a recent appearance, and several of their citizens were already becoming addicted. If that scourge remained unchecked, it could bring ruin to the town. They set their police force, headed by Councilmember Weaver, to root out the supplier of the drug and to try to find a cure for the addiction.
The Paseos took up base in some empty buildings at the far corner of Forlorn Hope. Sending a squad to attack the Republic troops, who were holding up in their ramshackle wood fort, Amanda (aka “The Red Queen”) moved towards the town with some of her men. Their goal was to bring the town of Forlorn Hope into their fold; one way or another. Uneasy about the raiders the Town Council only dealt with them from a distance to work out a peaceful solution. Unknown to the people of Forlorn Hope the Paseos were at that moment raiding their stores of food; stealing not only most of the produce of their recent harvest but all of the seeds stored for the next planting.
Meanwhile, fighting had already broken out between the Paseos and Republic. Finding their position too weak to defend, Col. Kemper forced the hand of the locals by taking up his base of operations among them. The Paseos, believing an alliance had formed between the Republic and local Militia, decided talking was no longer an option, now they would answer with swift action. Assembling her raiders, Amanda lead them into battle, and they quickly swarmed towards the joint headquarters. The sheer force of their numbers helped them as they burst into the building, shooting and slashing their way from room to room. It seemed as though they would kill all before them until some stiff resistance by Republic and Militia forces stopped them.
The Paseos fell back to reorganize as the Republic and Militia retook their hard-won building. During the lull in fighting more of the local farmers filtered in to shore up the defenses, but the damage was already done. Morale was low among the Militia, and if it had not been for the help of the Republic, they would have been run over. To make matters worse, more locals taken Jet in order to deal with the highly stressful situation. It made them worthless in a fight, compounding the town's problems. The police needed to find the source of the drug trade and cut off its head, for the good of the town.
In the meantime, the Republic was in a desperate search for radio parts. They desperately needed reinforcements, but their old radio was broken. If they could only contact other local squads, that would have a real chance to drive out the Paseos. The vaults doctor was also still in town looking for a G.E.C.K to help her own people. Being unassuming, both sides allowed her to pass through their lines unchecked. It was in one of the buildings held by the Paseos where she located the machine. The raiders had found it but having no clue of its worth, left the valuable piece of equipment unguarded. The doctor was able to simply grab it and walk away, unnoticed. The Mercs were also involved in their standard double-dealing; selling themselves at will to anyone offering them money for their services. Daniel, a Merc with experience in the fight for the Water Park, was also making some extra caps on the side. Unknown to the locals, he was the Jet dealer, using the local Trader as the middleman. His young daughter had sold herself to the Paseos and proved to be an effective killing machine. Soon, Daniel had the other Mercs in on his Jet trade, making the situation worse for the locals.
The Paseos continued to assault the joint HQ, but they never came as close to winning as they had during their initial attack. Some fresh food supplies made it into the building, helping to give the locals some comfort, police force was no closer to crushing the Jet trade when Daniel appeared before them with an offer.
The Mercs had stumbled across a large cache of money and with it purchased the store of the local Trader. Daniel was now in complete control of all trade going in and out of town. He convinced the Town Council to legalize the Jet trade in return for cheaper prices for ammunition at the store. In dire straits, the Council relented, knowing that they were in bad need of ammunition to defend themselves against the Paseos. Daniel thought that he had a great deal going, selling his guns and the means for both sides to kill themselves. Little did he know that he was going to be double-crossed.
As the sun began to set, the Council's head of food production, Kyle, ventured out to gather more food supplies. Sadly, he was never seen again and was presumed dead. But it still seemed as though the locals, with the Republic's help, would be able to hold out. Then, during one of the final pushes made by the Paseos, Col. Kemper was badly wounded. Unable to stay in the fight, a small team of rangers carried him out to the safety of their main base back in Kansas. This left the old soldier, Captain Swearingin, in charge. The Captain had been away from his home in the Republic for years, scouting out the Midwasteland. He had become disillusioned with the Republic and had gone slighting insane from all of the isolation. With night, both sides licked their wounds and readied for the next day.
The following morning literally started with a bang. The Council President accidentally tripped a mine set by the Mercs, wounding him. Though it wasn’t serious, it was a bad omen. Everything seemed to be unchanged from the day before as the Republic continued to support the weakened Militia. The Paseos resumed their assault but it looked as though they would not prevail. Soon word spread of an ammunition shortage. All of the previous day's fighting had exhausted the Traders ammunition supplies. That hit the Militia hard, they had expended large amounts of ammo to drive off the Paseos. To make matters worse Daniel offered the town a deal to provide them with a Jet addiction cure if they kept Jet legal, that deal costs a week worth of food and fifty caps. The Council agreed, but before the deal would go through, someone stole the fifty caps, leaving town broke. Then, the unthinkable happened. Captain Swearingin decided to reinterpret his orders. Hatching a plan, he made overtures to the Paseos.
Unknown to the Militia, the Republic troops were about to betray them. Calling for a truce, the outnumbered soldiers worked out a deal with the Paseos to take over the town together. Abandoning the Militia during the afternoon, the Republic soldiers joined with the Paseos. There were a few who protested this change but they could do nothing. The combined forces quickly ran over the surviving Militia, and Swearingin had the Council President put to death. It was then, as the President was about the be killed, he revealed himself as part of the new organization known as The Black Flag. The Captain installed himself as town President and made Amanda as his Vice President. This gave control of the town to both sides while simultaneously oppressing the locals to their joint will.
The town of Forlorn Hope was no more. Daniel, at the height of his power, was himself betrayed by the same Traders who had sold him their store. While he was distracted during the confusion of the death of the President one of the Trader shot him. Thinking that Daniel was dead, the Trader ran off in celebration of not only regaining the store, but taking control of the Jet trade. Daniel had, in reality, only passed out after being shot and woke up several hours later in a field. Bandaging himself up, he found his young daughter and, for her well being, the two of them left the town behind.
When Col. Kemper reached the Republic base in Kansas, he was sent directly to the hospital. It was while he recovered he received news of what transpired. It wasn’t long until his commander, General McHenry, stormed into his room. Not only had Kemper completely failed in his mission to unite the town and the Republic, but Amanda was still alive! Kemper had reported that he had killed the Paseos leader at the Water Park, but she had not died. Now the General had to deal with her and the mess at Forlorn Hope. He began working on assembling another team to hunt down the rogue Republic soldiers and to regain control of the town. McHenry informed Col. Kemper that he was sending a recommendation that the Col. be demoted down to Captain for this failure.
The Paseos sent a runner to the city with news of what happened. Valdez was happy that some food supplies would soon be filtering into his hands. Though, he was less than pleased having to run the town under a joint control. But it would do, for now. It would help feed his raiders as he prepared for their next move.
The former town of Forlorn Hope was no longer the same; one Council member killed, another presumed dead, and the third overpowered and forced to flee. There was barely enough food left to get through to the next planting season. The raiders had stolen most of their seeds. Those farmers who could also flee in the hopes of finding a better place to call home. It wasn’t long until the entire character of the town changed. As Jet became a common product, many locals used it to forget and get through the difficult times. Alcohol also became a common item where it wasn’t before, both in use and in trade. Soon Jet and booze were the main items of export from the town. Within months, the town also became a den of prostitution and a gambling house opened in the former Council room. The town that was once a shining example of what could be was now in shambles. Some blamed the lust for empire by the Paseos; others the land desires of the Republic. Either way, it became a no-win situation for all involved; except for Valdez, who at least got the consolation prize of some food and caps for his greater cause.
Story addition #3: All Roads Lead to Hell
After the fight for Forlorn Hope, both sides pulled back to reassess their situations. Valdez got some much-needed food supplies, but not at the levels he needed. The Republic felt the loss but it didn't change their course or put a major setback on their efforts. They would return again to right that wrong and free the town from the grip of its current oppression. In the meantime, they realized that keeping a steady supply of goods in that region was in their best interest. The Republic wasn't the only
ones to see this, with Valdez, and his Paseos also setting their sights on that same supply route.
After another night of wild parties, Valdez assembled his officers and informed them of his next target. He would gather a larger force this time and move South, to the town of Trader Junction. The town was in the center of a waste but it's position also delivered the wealth that had grown it from nothing. Trader Junction started off as a single shack with a single trader. Its position on the main road junction going to multiple points made it a perfect location to make money from travelers. It didn't take long for the town to grow in prosperity. It gradually began not only to trade but to control most of the trade going in and out of the town to other locations. It was becoming flush with wealth and supported its own semi-professional force, trained to protect the trade. The town had long dealt with the Paseos, providing them with a host of goods. The traders always tried to keep an arms-length from them; mostly out of fear of what could happen if they insulted this growing force from the North. Recently, they had also been supplying the Republic outposts, and it had been a good, steady supply of income for the town. Dealing with both sides was what ultimately made them a target.
The Republic commander in Kansas saw the opportunity that Trader Junction offered to cement their hold in the region. To be able to deny the Paseos their much-needed supplies was a bonus. Sending orders to the troops stationed at the Water Park, General McHenry ordered them to gather a team consisting of Rangers and local militia, and to move East towards Trader Junction. There they were to make contact with the town, map the area, and locate a good position for a future fort. They were also to try to work out a deal that would deny the Paseos any future trade, even at the cost of the Republics prices with the town. Collecting a large force, the commander, Lt. "Happy Jack" Shutte, moved out. It would be a mistake for which The Republic would suffer.
The morning it all unfolded, Trader Junction woke up to a thief in their midst. In the night, someone has snuck in and stolen the caravan guard's payroll caps. The mutants in the area were also becoming a threat to their caravans, having already driven away the people of the nearby village of Fishers Hole with constant attacks. The plan was to finally drive these troublesome green skins away, but now they needed also to find the thief and deal with him accordingly. During the confusion and anger of this realization, no one was paying attention as the Republic and militia forces swarmed into town.
They didn't attempt to contact the town leadership but set up a forward base in Trader Junction and waited for further orders. In minutes, a fire fight broke out as forward troops of the Paseos also came up to the town. It was a quick clash and both sides soon pulled back. The caravan guards refused to sidenote either faction during this short conflict. Eventually a form of peace was restored. The Republic forces held the Eastern corner of town, and the Paseos held the Western end. The town tried to get back to business. In this lull, one of the Paseos found an old motor in the mechanic shop. With no one looking, they squirreled it away back to their base camp where they had a cap making machine. With the machine and some scrap metal, they could now print their own caps to spend in the area. They made a couple of hundred bogus caps, passing them around to as many locals as possible.
The Republic fell back and began a very passive resistance. They were able to complete their goal of getting together a map and finding a suitable location for a future fort. Sadly, that was the only solace, as nothing else would go right. Their leader, Lt. "Happy Jack" seemed to have lost his mind, not unlike the Republics second in command at Forlorn Hope. Despite pleading by his troops, they could not get him to stir. The Paseos had fewer such problems, as they began to set up some relations with Trader Junction. Their prodigious slaving did not help their cause with some people in the region. They were not the friendly neighbors, but the violent conquerors. The town had sent a contingent of guards to recapture Fishers Hole and possibly drive away the mutants. They were able to capture the town, hoping to resettle it, as it was a source of income before its residents were driven away. The mutants proved to be a tougher nut to crack. And the search for the caps thief went on with few leads.
In the more peaceful ends of town, a former vault doctor set up shop, proving to be very useful in helping those injured from the random encounters. Two other vault dwellers were drawn to the town in search of a sought after water chip. They were eventually able to locate one, and rejoiced in saving their suffered vault. Across the valley, a couple of members from an odd religious sect out of former St Louis made camp in an old church. They worshiped the "Arch Mother", the former Gateway Arch that gave them protection from the surrounding wastes. Their life goals were to rid the world of mutants, and spread the world of the "Arch Mother." They were also drawn to the area from stories of alien technology that could support their cause.
The day ended with a smattering of combat, but little was resolved. That night Lt. "Happy Jack" decided to follow Swearingin's lead and turn on the Republic by capturing Trader Junction for himself. Little did he know that another vault dweller, and the local trader, with the help of a "mailman" courier, would help to put an end to these ambitions.
The following day found the town in control of Fishers Hole and gradually beating back the mutant threat. The religious wanders were able to locate their sought after alien artifact and were now recruiting fellow wastelanders into their fold, including the local doctor. Lt. "Happy Jack" was also recruiting among anyone willing to listen and join in his plans for a hostile take over. He would soon be suffering for this choice; not only from the vault dweller and the trader, but from some of his own men who were unwilling to betray the Republic. They knew full well what had happened at Forlorn Hope and refused to let it happen again. They planned on killing him if he attempted such an action. Yet their plans were ruined by another group of Republic troops, and the Black Flag, who attempted to feed "Happy Jack" to the mutants.
When this failed, he returned more determined than ever. But as fate would have it, the mayor of Trader Junction worked out a deal with the Paseos, some of the Republic troops, and a vault dweller in power armor to squash any attempt at his town. As "Happy Jack" rested nearby before his planned assault, a lightning raid on him by the Paseos killed off his supporters, and captured him alive. Dragging him to town, they interrogated him under guard, and they drove off his few remaining supporters.
A Republic soldier snuck in with a grenade in an effort to kill "Happy Jack" and the Paseos leader. He wounded them severely, and he was killed in the process. After getting what they needed, the town's mayor dragged "Happy Jack" out and executed him in the center of town, ending his plans to overthrow Traders Junction.
In the end Traders Junction kept its standing in the Midwasteland. They were able to drive away the remaining mutants, and reopen Fishers Hole for resettlement. Business was soon back to normal as they continued to trade with both sides of the conflict, yet for their assistance in helping save them from a take over, at slightly lower rates to the Paseos.
The Paseos returned to the city ruins, once again with a minor victory. Valdez knew like, at Forlorn Hope, he needed more to drive the Republic away for good. In a move that surprised everyone, he made an alliance with The Chiefs, a small tribal band, living in the ruins of the former sports stadiums in the city. The Chiefs were considered crazy even by most of the hardened Paseos, all of whom avoided their territory. The Chiefs were a crazy, violent tribe known not only for its blood lust, but their willingness to eat their captives. Now, Chiefs warriors would be joining in Valdez's fight for the empire.
The Republic and their militia allies limped back to the Water Park. But it was all not a loss. They might not have denied the Paseos any trade but they kept their routes open. They also had a good, useful map of the region, and planned to return and cement their forces nearby with a defensive fort to protect their interests in the region. They fully planned to return and make their presence known as the new power in the Midwasteland. For now they were content having protected their current rate of trade, which will help to keep their war efforts alive.
And the war would continue as both sides planned their next move.
Story addition #4: Breaking Hadrians Wall
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