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Fallout New York: Part 4


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#41 EChatty

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Posted 15 June 2011 - 07:54 AM

Viconia waited patiently and watched as Climber nervously approached the open gate, as if he was afraid someone would try to stop him. It was all she could do not to giggle out loud as he jumped back and forth several times before scampering into the wagon. She'd packed all her stuff into the wagon, then borrowed a horse from Jacob to ride, and when Climber settled himself, Sam drove the wagon towards Leon and Grianne's homestead and she rode on one side to keep watch while Tim rode another horse on the other side.

Tim chuckled under his breath as he watched Climber testing his new freedoms. He'd been told a little about the strange monkey-person and he understood a bit about what he was feeling. He'd been locked up or probably kept on a leash for most of his life and didn't quite understand what true freedom was about. He glanced up at Sam and smiled as they started out towards Leon and Grianne's home, then rode beside the wagon to keep watch on that side. He only hoped they would find Jez and that he would be all right, and that they could figure out why the village was holding him hostage, for that's what Tim felt they were doing, holding the nice healer hostage for reasons that they didn't as yet understand.


#42 RJDiogenes

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Posted 15 June 2011 - 07:03 PM

After spending all night at the Blacksmith Facility, RJD-1 joined Viconia and the others outside the city gates. The workers at the facility had worked unceasingly to patch up his body to about 75% operating capacity; luckily his brain was operating at peak efficiency.

He monitored and recorded with interest the activities of the diminutive humanoid designated "Climber."  The behavioral patterns were inconsistent with all records in his psycho-social database.  The Robot's analytical parser concluded that he should continue to gather and parse data based on observation before requesting an interview with the unusual being.


#43 Mikoto

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Posted 20 June 2011 - 03:59 PM

Samantha too watched Climber's antics as he cautiously watched the guards them jumped in and out of the point that marked the edge of Chitina and the road beyond it. It seemed to her like he was testing whether he was allowed to leave and seemed to be delighted when he figured out that he could leave whenever he wanted. The guards on duty were smiling and seemed more amused than anything else. She was slightly puzzled as she would have thought that by now his teachers would have educated him on the fact Chitina was a free city. He looked young enough to still be in school at least. Sam shrugged inwardly and shook the reins. The horses obediently started walking down the road towards Grianne and Leon's farm. The journey to rescue Jez had begun.

#44 Mikoto

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 05:50 PM

Timejump About an hour.

The short journey to Leon and Grianne's farm had been uneventful. They hadn't encountered another living thing that wasn't a plant from the moment they left to the moment that they arrived at the thick stone walls surrounding the farm. It didn't look like anyone was home but Sam wasn't surprised about that. From what she knew of the hybrids they tended to be quiet and unobtrusive people, content to live peacefully. She almost felt bad about disrupting that peace given what they had been freed from. Samantha brought the horses to a stop then dismounted before securing the reins to a nearby tree. It was odd. Her sheltered life in the Vault seemed to be a lifetime ago and to belong to a different person. Wasting no time she walked over to the thick metal gates and used a short metal pole attached to a piece of rope to rattle the bars. The resultant sound acted like a doorbell and if the hybrids were inside it was likely they would hear it.

#45 Balthamos

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 05:53 PM

Climber was having fun, he started by riding in the cart but had to jump down when there was a tree he could climb, he climbed the tree and it was very high, then he slid back down. There was nothing to eat up there except some berries but he didn't think they'd taste very nice. No white plant either but that didn't grow on trees. When he caught up with the cart (which wasn't going too fast) he decide he didn't have to ride on top of the cart and clung to its side. He tried the left and the right side but found the view unsatisfying either way so he decided he could ride under the cart. It was hard to cling under the cart and the horses pulling it had a lot of legs. After knocking his head on a jutting rock several times Climber decided that it was probably better to ride on top of the cart, so he did. He crouched low, clinging on to the cart with all four sides peering at the strange Metal-Man; he had no idea why anyone would wear clothes made entirely out of metal, they couln't be as comfy or useful as ropes.

When they arrived at Leon & Grianne's farm Climber was excited! The farm had a big wall around it that he could probably climb! He froze when Sam rang the doorbell and watched the gates intently from the cart wondering who Leon and Grianne were and if they were kind and friendly.

#46 RJDiogenes

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 06:16 PM

Nothing during the journey had triggered RJD-1's perimeter sensors, allowing him to monitor and record the behaviors of Climber.  While there were no near matches in the Human or Hybrid psychology databases, a complete archive scan had turned up several similar patterns from the veterinary database of abused animals that residents of Beacon Hill Vault had rescued from nearby enclaves. This allowed the Robot's profiling sub-routines to synthesize a preliminary model of a Human whose childhood had been isolated and traumatic.

When he observed Climber staring at him, he quickly cross-referenced his conclusions with his social interaction database and compiled an appropriate interaction matrix which included a range of non-threatening body language and esteem-reinforcing conversation.

Raising his hand slowly, RJD-1 waved it in a restrained manner and said, in a carefully modulated voice, using .09% echo boost to take off the metallic edge, "Hello, Climber. The behaviors you exhibit are very interesting. You have no analog in surviving psycho-social historical records."


#47 EChatty

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 06:51 AM

Leon was outside working in their garden when he turned his head, listening as what sounded like a wagon approached their wall. When the alert sounded from someone hitting the metal gate with the bar, he trotted over and was a bit surprised to see Samantha standing there, with RJD-1, Viconia, Tim and someone he wasn't familiar with, but who resembled a humanoid monkey. He opened the gate to allow them inside, then greeted them all. "So what brings you all out here?" He asked, having a feeling that something was not right, especially as he didn't see Jez with Viconia.

Tim greeted Leon as he maneuvered his horse through the open gate and looked around. He'd never been out here himself since the two of them had no need of his services, and he was impressed. Whoever had the property before must have built the wall and the space inside was quite large, large enough for them to be able to hunt and grow their own food and sustain themselves with very little aid from Chitina itself, something he didn't think he'd want to do, he was more comfortable behind Chitina's wall than he would be on his own and he glanced at Sam as she pulled the wagon inside. He'd like to spend a lot more of it with her as well, preferably the rest of his life, such as it was, if she was agreeable.

"Hello Leon." Viconia greeted as she rode her horse inside the open gate and looked around. She remembered how the place looked from coming out to check on Grianne while she was pregnant, now they had a beautiful cub who would grow up free and never know what it would feel like to have one of those nasty training collars around its neck. She tried to smile at him, but her worry for Jez had her very unhappy. "Jez is in trouble." She told the lion-man when he asked what brought them out there. She explained what had happened as they headed for the house. "So we'd like to know if you and Grianne would like to come with us to see what's going on over there."


#48 Balthamos

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 05:12 PM

Climber waved back very slowly in an identical restrained manner. The man with the metal clothes spoke strangely and used many big words that Climber didn't understand. He wasn't sure if he should say something to the man in metal clothes but while he was deciding (and still waving) the gate of the farm opened.

Climber recognised the animal-man straight away, he was there when the fat man attacked everybody for doing something he didn't understand. He was a lot less scary when he didn't look like he was about to eat somebody but he could work out that the animal man was coming with them because he could be very scary, he did wonder who Grianne was though and why he/she lived out here with the animal man.

#49 Mikoto

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 06:45 PM

Samantha lead the horses and cart within the walls of the farm. Tashu seemed almost to emerge from nowhere to help her get the gate shut and barred again then get the horses supplied with food, water and shelter so they would be happy for a few hours. Once they were done they joined Viconia and the others who were now seated around the kitchen table inside. Sam had barely managed to take a seat next to Tim when Grianne arrived. She brought the tiger-hybrid up to speed about Jez and repeated Viconia's request for help.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Grianne had just finished feeding Leonne, their cub and settling her down for a nap in the crib. With her cub safely asleep and tucked in the crib she followed the sound of voices to the kitchen. She was surprised to see Samantha and the others as visitors including a small Teriki monkey-mutant boy. Tashu was quietly supplying them with cups of water. It was nice they had a well on the farm. Everything they needed was here with only minimal things they could get in trade from Chitina. She listened carefully while Sam explained the predicament Jez was in. Grianne's first instinct was one of wanting to go and help him. She'd spent most of her life as a prisoner and hated to see anyone as one, especially one of those that had helped free the hybrids. Her second instinct was one to protect her baby cub. But she trusted that Tashu could look after her and manage the farm while they were gone. She would have to consult with Leon about it. Grianne looked lovingly at her mate. "I think we should help. Tashu could look after Leonne. Unless I stay also." She kept her tone neutral to indicate that she was amenable to either option.

#50 EChatty

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 07:03 PM

Leon listened again as Sam explained things to Grianne when she walked in after putting Leonne down. He couldn't be any happier now that they had their family and the self-sustaining farm, but when he heard that Jez was in trouble, his first instinct was to go and help too, so he nodded when Grianne voiced the same thing. "I want to help." He said, smiling at his mate. "And I won't tell you to stay, I trust Tashu to look after Leonne and the farm. It's up to you if you want to come along." He had the same feelings she did, he loved their baby and would do anything to insure her safety, but his friend needed help and there was a mystery to solve. He wanted to know what village kept a supposed thief locked up when it was not economical to do so.

Tim sat down and sipped his water as Sam spoke with Leon and Grianne. Having the two of them along would give them added security on the trip and when they got there. He wondered what it was that the villagers wanted out of them that they were willing to jail someone for a crime they didn't commit, for he knew that Jez was a very honest person. They had to know that whoever came out to investigate would know they were walking into a trap, he just hoped they could come up with some kind of plan to thwart it. He was very uneasy, but he wasn't about to abandon the expedition.


#51 RJDiogenes

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 06:30 PM

When Climber did not respond, RJD-1 activated his facial analysis sub-routine, which reported that the little person was confused. The robot queried his social interaction database and fed the resulting data into his extrapolation program, which responded with the likelihood that the vocabulary he used was inappropriate for Climber's educational background.  His empathy engrams generated negative values in his self-analysis variables based on the possibility that he had offended his new colleague and he tasked his extrapolation program to correct the error.

Just then, the gate to the farm was opened by Leon, who greeted the party. "Good day, Leon," said RJD-1, selecting an appropriate greeting from his social interaction database. "It is good to have a real-time image of you in my sensors again."

The Robot followed everyone into the kitchen of the farmhouse and stood quietly, declining when Tashu politely offered him a glass of water. He spent the time generating a beta version of a vocabulary filter to be used in future interactions with Climber.


#52 Balthamos

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Posted 06 July 2011 - 05:54 PM

Climber quietly followed animal man in to the kitchen with everybody else keeping a close eye on the man with metal clothes just in case he said anything else strange. He backed away from Tashu when she approached, she was a different animal woman with stripes, he kept low to the floor and moved towards the door until she stopped trying to give him water. When another different animal woman but same animal as the other animal woman came in Climber was very confused, how many animal people lived here? Climber guessed that the second stripey animal woman must be Grianne as they were asking her if she'd come and rescue the man with strange eyes who'd got in trouble. While everyone was talking Climber decided it was time for something to eat, he took a small piece of dried meat from his pack and waited until nobody was looking before throwing it in the air and catching it in his mouth, he licked his lips then quickly looked around to make sure nobody noticed.

#53 Mikoto

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Posted 07 July 2011 - 09:50 PM

Grianne paced back and fourth in the kitchen, her tail lashing from left to right in reflection of her irritation and indecisiveness. Her instincts were telling her to stay home and look after Leonne. She understood on an intellectual level these were her maternal instincts talking and that in reality Tashu was a capable administrator for their farm and experienced at looking after cubs. It had been one of her 'duties' back in the Vault to mind the cubs that had been born into captivity some years ago. Leonne liked her. They would be fine. After a few moments of internal infighting Grianne finally turned to Leon and Samantha and nodded. "I'll come too." She agreed.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Sam felt a wave of relief when Leon and then Grianne decided to join them. She felt much better about their chances of success with the two large and ferocious hybrids coming along to solve the mystery of why Jez was being held captive. They would be incredibly useful if they had to resort to force and rescue him if the villagers couldn't be persuaded to release him. "Thank you." She said. "If it's okay with you we'd like to depart soon once you've made preparations to travel."

#54 EChatty

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Posted 08 July 2011 - 08:02 AM

Viconia was very relieved when Grianne and Leon agreed to go with them. She understood the tiger hybrid's desire to remain with her cub, she would feel the same once she had children herself. Thinking about that had her thinking about what might be happening to Jez and if he was hurt or maybe even dead already. She didn't think he was dead yet, but she wasn't entirely sure either, she just wanted to get over there and see what was going on and why the village was effectively holding him hostage.

Leon nodded when Sam said they wanted to leave as soon as possible. "I understand." He said. "Tashu can take care of things here, we just need to pack some things." With that, he went to their room and started packing. Once he was through, he walked over to the crib where Leonne was sleeping and smiled down at her. She was of the first generation of hybrids who would never know slavery or abuse, though they would teach her where they came from so she would know her history. He then turned to Grianne, who had come with him and was packing her own stuff, hefted his bag and waited for her.

Tim waited quietly while Leon and Grianne went to pack the things they would need for the trip. He didn't know the hybrids that well since they rarely came to the compound, but they seemed to be very nice people, though they looked very fierce upon first glance, though that was to do with being part wild animal. He knew there was also a compound a little farther out that was housing the rest of the hybrids as their own little village and he was happy that they were making their own life. The only hybrid he'd seen regularly was Hawke, the black leopard hybrid who was working at the hospital and who was mated to Lilly, head nurse at the hospital. While he could be fierce if he was protecting her, he was also very nice and respectful for the most part. He was the only hybrid who had chosen to stay inside Chitina, and that was because of Lilly, though everyone accepted him as part of the community and he had made no trouble since that mess with Lilly's mother and the Overseer. Despite all that, it was a good thing the hybrids didn't judge them all based on the actions of them and the small group of people who followed them.


#55 Mikoto

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Posted 08 July 2011 - 05:25 PM

Time Jump: Several hours later.

Time stamp: Late evening, dusk.

With Leon and Grianne recruited on the mission to rescue Jez, once the travel preparations for the two hybrids was complete and Grianne was finally able to seperate from her cub for a while, Samantha and the others resumed their journey to Akiri. Fortunately for the remainder of that day the weather remained clear and they had no violent encounters with any wildlife or slavers. They did spot a Yao Guai prowling at the edge of the woods but by remaining still and calm without spooking it they managed to get by without violence as it turned away and disappeared back into the forest. Despite being mutated the Yao Guais still retained a lot of their original bear ancestry and behaviour patterns. It was getting dark by the time the group found shelter in the form of an old world motel building. The two hybrids had gone inside the building to scout it and returned. They prounounced it free of wildlife and structurally sound. Grianne even reported that it had been furnished in recent years and had been sealed securely against wildlife. It made sense. Given it's proximity to a major road it was probably regularly still used for it's original function of a place for travellers to sleep at night.

Sam and Grianne finished wheeling the wagon into a room that had obviously been converted into a garage and stables by someone at some point in recent years. Sam inwardly wondered if some enterprising individual had tried to operate a real motel business here that had failed. It made sense given the good condition of the motel, the furniture and conversions plus reinforcements to the windows and doors necessary in the new post-apocalyptic world. It was a shame it hadn't worked for whatever reason. Nevertheless she was grateful for the carefully stored hay and food for the horses and in a short while they were comfortably quartered for the night.

Grianne then went to find Leon so they could select one of the many rooms to sleep in overnight. Sam decided to do the same thing and wandered up and down the motel until she discovered where Tim had chosen to sleep and without thinking about it, chose the room next door to him. She had to strip the sheets and blankets off the bed and mattress and use her own pillow and sleeping bag but it would provide a comfortable place for her to sleep. She lit a candle and placed it on the small table in the room. Other than the bed, a table and a chair the room was bare. But she was satisfied. Finally Sam headed back to where the wagon was parked in order to get some food for dinner.

#56 RJDiogenes

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Posted 08 July 2011 - 07:40 PM

When the group stopped at the ruins of an abandoned motel at sunset, RJD-1 set himself near the main entrance and enabled the full-range of his passive sensors to detect any wildlife or other threats overnight while the biologicals slept. His situational alert sub-routine reminded him of a similar situation in the past and he also activated his ground radar and ultrasonic perimeter scanners; nothing would get by above or below him this time.

#57 Balthamos

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Posted 09 July 2011 - 06:03 PM

Climber examined the old building they were in and watched everybody find somewhere to sleep, when nobody told each other what to do and nobody told him where to sleep he decided that this might be one of those times where nobody would tell him what to do. Climber was unsure of this situation but decided the best thing to do would be to decide what to do himself but make sure he was ready to do what someone else told him to do if anyone told him what to do at all?

He looked back towards the man with metal clothes who was standing very still, it was like he'd left his clothes standing in the entrance hall and gone off to sleep somewhere, he wondered if this was part of a plan to scare off anyone who might come looking for them in the night. Climber thought it would be a better idea to leave a real person on guard instead of someone's clothes but decided that the man with metal clothes probably knew what he was doing. He did use lots of big words so he must be very clever

Climber explored several rooms until he found one that might work, the room was quite small and didn't smell very nice but that wasn't a problem to climber, white tiles were mostly missing from the walls and largely present in several pieces on the floor, it was dark so he careful picked his way across the broken glass that littered the area and opened a door to one of three miniature rooms in the big room. Stepping on to the little white seat Climber wondered what this room was used for, there wasn't enough room to work unless all you had to do was sit down and think. Climbing to the top of the miniature room which also lacked a roof he threw his ropes over the wall and tied them to a tap, like the one he had at his house,Climer's House he thought, only this one didn't work no matter how hard he turned it. He also noticed the little rooms had legs instead of a wall down to the floor so using those as another anchor point he made himself a nest of ropes in the middle room. Tying one rope from the door to his bed so he'd know if anyone came in he settled down for the night.

#58 EChatty

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Posted 09 July 2011 - 06:35 PM

Viconia was mostly silent on the trip out once Leon and Grianne were ready to go. Once they reached the hotel and found it furnished she chose a small room close enough to the others so she wouldn't be isolated, then spread her own blanket on the bed. She made a meal out of some dried meat and fruit she brought along, then had some water, then she lay in the bed and tried to relax, but it was hard when she missed Jez and wanted him there beside her.

Leon kept busy looking out for danger as the group traveled to their first stop, which was a comfortably furnished, recently abandoned hotel. After he and Grianne chose a suitable room, he shared a meal with her. "We should take turns with watch tonight." He said, giving her a snuggle.


#59 Mikoto

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Posted 09 July 2011 - 09:12 PM

"Good idea." Grianne agreed with Leon after they had chosen a room and shared a meal together. She was missing her cub already but she reminded heself that Leonne was being well taken care of by Tashu. After finished her food she snuggled her mate and considered. "I think RDJ-1 is on guard duty as he doesn't need to sleep." She said thoughtfully. "But if it makes you feel more secure we can take turns watching." She rested against him comfortably.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Sam got some food from the wagon and ate some of it as she returned to her room. She sat at the table and finished eating the remainder of her food. She didn't feel quite safe as she always didn't when they were out and about travelling far from civilisation such as it was. But after her experiences since leaving the Vault she felt that it was understandable that she felt a little uneasy. Nevertheless Sam finished eating her dinner and changed into a set of loose fitting trousers and shirt that served her as pyjamas and crawled into bed. Her fingers curled around the knife she had tucked under her pillow as she drifted off to sleep.

#60 EChatty

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Posted 10 July 2011 - 08:22 AM

"Yes, he is, but an extra pair of eyes and ears never hurt anything." Leon said. It was dangerous out here and even the robot's sensors weren't infallible. He cuddled Grianne, missing Leonne and the cuddles he'd give them both, but this was important. They were being led into some kind of trap and he didn't like it, it made him jumpy. At least he was almost sure it was a trap, why else would a village hold an innocent man on charges that were clearly false? He would cuddle and snuggle Gri for awhile longer, then take a watch for himself.

Tim finished a small meal in the room that he had chosen for himself-small but it would do for him. He'd never really been out beyond Chitina hardly at all, but for his friend he was risking it. He'd come to know Jez and Viconia and knew they were both wonderful people who only cared about keeping the people well. He crawled underneath the covers after removing his shoes and lay there trying to relax and get some sleep so he wouldn't be too tired to travel in the morning.



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