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Explorers of the New World


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So a quick note from me. I’ll continue adding more when I’m able, and the story won’t just follow a set amount of characters. Often I’ll be bouncing around between settings along the same timeline. Some interactions between other characters at similar times in different locations and whatnot. I’ll be exploring my Lore further and character growth.
Chapter 1
The year is May 3rd 2300. With Mr.House’s victory in Vegas twenty years prior the Legion has begun to fall into collapse. Caesar has died and Legate Lanius has assumed control of most of the Legion’s forces, while the NCR has elected a new President focused more on Exploration than war, he has the majority of the public supporting him and has developed more advanced agriculture and deepened relations between the New California Republic and New Vegas. Bringing electricity and water into barren lands. Christopher Briggs the the President of the NCR has sent a few expeditions along the coastline heading North avoiding Legion lands. They have discovered many new lands and peoples, some will make good alliances and others will become new enemies. However upon landing on the shores of Alaska they will come to realize the new dangers that await them.
The Vaults atrium was packed with new recruits all longing to become Arctic Rangers, to wear the starred wolf badge and earn a living for their families wherever they may be; standing above them all on the second level was a man in his late forties with black hair braided in parts and a full beard covering his chest. He wore the armor everyone in the room envied or respected; for he was the High Chief of the Rangers themselves. North Ashland, decorated, respected, and capable tactician. He strode about back and forth inspecting the bunch of rag tag Wastelanders who had gathered, many in leather armors holding single shot rifles.
North stopped squarely in front of a microphone and spoke commandingly.
“Welcome all! You have made a brave choice to gather here today. The life of a R anger is a perilous one, and you will be expected to fulfil your duties. Get shot slap a bandage on it. Lose a limb tape up the wound. Die, and walk it off. This is not a job! Nay I say! It is a way of life. We are a lifeline to many and the only Law most will ever see. You may come from Villages or Farms, you may be Fishermen or Criminals. But this is your chance to turn your life around, to devote your life for the people. For there is no one besides the Rangers that has taken this task. During the next year you will enter basic training. It will test you and weed out those unfit for duty. From there your real training begins. Good Luck. You will need it.”
North lingered on but a moment as the new recruits shuffled on out. Some inspired by his speech others more confused than before.
Elsewhere in the War Room. Arctic Wolves Jonathan and Claire sat awaiting North’s return.
“Claire!!” Jonathan bellowed out. “Feet off the Table!! According to subsection..”
The sound of Claire’s boots hitting the floor with a thud and subsequently his voice interrupted Jonathan’s rantings.
“Oh will you shut up about the rules and regulations! Not everyone is as uptight as you are.”
Jonathan’s brows furrowed as wrinkles spread all across his face.
“WE! Are the epitome of the Arctic Ranger! And as such must present ourselves as..”
As Jonathan continued his rant he was interrupted by High Chief Ashland when he walked into the room.
“Jonathan!” North said with a chuckle. “Do I need to get you two a room? So you could continue to profess your love to each other.”
Jonathan fell silent as he saluted the High Chief while as he did Ranger Claire just gave a quick two finger salute.
“Yo. Good to see you North, I thought Jonathan here would yell my ears off till they bled.”
North let out a slight chuckle. “Well seems like I saved you from your imminent death. So now that you’re done flirting, I have a mission for you two. Should you survive that is. I’m starting to doubt that now.”
“Sure North, what’s the mission?”
“I think I’ll live being paired up with Claire.”
North smiled as he set a folder down on the table. “We’ve seen reports of small ships of unknown origin. A landing party was seen near Cordova, dressed in Riot armors similar to ours. No hostile actions so far, we must assume that might not last for long. Especially once they encounter Lythropes or Bloodpack raiders. So you’re to investigate and make contact if they seem affable.”
The two Rangers read through the report thoroughly before either of them spoke. While North simply drank a full stout of wildberry mead.
“High Chief?” Jonathan spoke raising his head. “It says the initials N.C.R were seen on the shoulders. Might they be from some Government”
North shrugged.”That’s what I assume. Anyways finish reading that and gear up. I want you two moving shortly.”
The Rangers nodded as they continued flipping through the papers.
Chapter 2
Somewhere in the forests near Cordova combat boots stomped all around a campsite where tents had been pitched the previous night. The Troopers and Rangers that made up this expedition were only twenty strong and had basic armaments; the Rangers being the only exception to this as they were decked out in the signature Veteran Dusters and possessed Brush guns as well as other arms befitting their ranks.
“This place ain't so bad there’s plenty of trees and look!” The Trooper held out a canteen of water. “Checked the radiation levels of a nearby creek and well, it’s just fine. Has some residual radiation, but it’s well within acceptable levels.”
“Good find Private Beckard.” A tall Ranger with clean cut hair said as he smacked Beckard across the back. “Alright if anyone needs to top off their canteen ask Beckard to show you the way, then show anyone else that asks. Lets get this campsite packed up. I want to see if we can find some locals. Keep your guns loaded and ready for trouble don’t know how civilized these people may be.”
A collective “YES SIR!!” Echoed throughout the campsite.
The Troopers moved about briskly as the site was cleaned up within an hour. Tents were rolled and dirt was shoveled onto the firepit, one of the Privates stopped to inspect something he saw out of the corner of his eye. An odd large white mushroom that seemed to have strings or webbing of some kind attached to it. As he peered closer it jumped up from the ground and scurried off leaving the Private flat on his ass gasping for air.
One of the Rangers darted over to his side.”Private are you injured!”
He shook his head as he caught his breath.”N..No Sir. What the hell was that, some kind of bug!?”
“Did it bite you Private?”
“No Sir. Just took off as soon as I got close.”
“Well.” The Ranger said taking a look at the direction the Private was pointing. “Let this be a lesson to all of you, don't go poking your noses where they don’t belong. We have no idea what the native flora and fauna is like. Best to assume it’s dangerous till we figure out otherwise.. Right then let’s get a move on, we’re burning daylight.”
The Troopers filled in a line as they nervously looked over their shoulders, this was a strange land it had only been a few days and things had already become quite odd. The forest would sometimes have an eerie clam with nothing but the sound of wind blowing through the trees. Other times eyes would peer out from the branches belonging to birds that had a gray plumage.
They would march on for hours before they made their next camp, and as they moved closer towards the big cities more and more Factions would take note of their presence.


Chapter 3
“So?” North spoke setting down his stout of mead. “I assume you know the details by now.”
The two Rangers nodded, while North continued speaking.
“Good then, I’ll be taking my leave.” He began to stand when he was called out to.
“High Chief!?” Jonathan spoke up. “Should we be concerned that we may have a tag along?”
North stopped his hands had barely left the table when Jonathan addressed him. “No. If you’re referring to my trouble making Daughter she’s off to see her Girlfriend, I think she brought ales and Ashe told me she had plans to keep my Daughter busy for the day.
“Ah. Things seem to be going well for them.” Claire spoke with a slight smile.
“Verily so. My Daughter Vivian and Ashe have been seeing each other for a few months now, I think she does Ashe well, Vi tempers her; keeps her from overdosing on Chems.”
Jonathan solemnly spoke. “I read the file on her. It’s simply a miracle she still has her sanity, what she went through as a mere child would have broken any grown man.”
“Quite.” North murmured. “But that was long ago, Ashe has good people supporting her now. Now however It’s about time you all get ready.”
Jonathan stood first followed by Claire who rose to his feet sluggishly.
“Right boss, we’ll hit the armory and make sure we have enough firepower for whatever is thrown our way.” -- “Jonathan, need anything?”
“Certainly! I have plans to pick up my shoulder mounted machine gun, and missile launcher.”
“Seriously!? You planning on wiping out an army?”
“I see why not. 10 mm rounds are plentiful and if we come across something foul indeed, a well placed missile will end it thoroughly.”
“Okay. You do that, I prefer weapons with more tact, you know a Dragunov and a old fashioned revolver break action chambered in trusty .357 rounds. Not all of us are built like tanks you know, Mister Mad Titan.”
“You two have fun duking it out here, In the meantime I’m sure nothing bad will befall these strangers.” North said snarkily
Claire stopped speaking and Jonathan stood still.
“Now I trust whatever issues you may have you can put them aside. I do have other Rangers to command.”
“Forgive me North, got a little carried away.” Claire said before turning to Jonathan. “Sorry about that, you know. Being rude and all.”
“Say no more, our gripes will have to wait for later. But don’t call me Mad Titan again, that’s not who I am anymore. My abilities serve a higher cause than myself.”
“No more mushy stuff than?” Claire asked.
“But I like mushy stuff. Hugs create camaraderie.”
“Coming from you they just create broken bones, that and your Pysker powers tend to give off a different vibe.”
North began to walk towards the doorway before he stopped and looked back, it was a big gamble. But Claire needed to fit in with the other Arctic Wolves. He was part of an elite group composed of only seven members, every other Wolf before him has partnered at one time or another. That was how bonds were made, North only hoped that it would all work out in the end.
Hours had passed since then. And with Jonathan and Claire both equipped in the traditional Arctic Ranger armors, which long ago were Winterized Riot gear now just covered in a long duster and customized to each ranger’s preference. Claire liked minimal gear, just the standard armor and duster. Jonathan on the other hand had the pauldrons of the T-45d powered armor built into his armor’s shoulder joints, and wore thick furred boots. Belts of 10 mm ammunition hung off his waist, and missiles filled their pack.
As they walked through the Vault, the murmurs of it’s residents echoed throughout the halls.
“See that. It’s Jonathan the Mad Titan. They say he can grow to the size of a giant.”
“Quit being stupid. We all know it’s some mind trick, otherwise how could he walk these halls. He’s one of those Psykers, the ones with strange powers.”
“Who's the wimp next to him?”
“You mean the guy with the crimson hair? He’s Claire. Got quick fingers and quicker aim they say. Guy could pick your pockets before you knew you had any.”
“How’d he become a Ranger?”
“Same as anyone. Started over and proved himself.”
“He’s young though.”
“Hot too.”
“Hey quiet all of you. They’re looking this way.”
Claire chuckled while Jonathan simply walked on. “There goes the rumor mill again. Right what preference of transportation do you like? Wanna go for something simple like the Horse?” Claire said.
“I prefer the Worcas.”
Claire raised a brow.”The Wolf, Orca mutant hybrids?”
“Yes. They hold my weight, and don’t get spooked easily.”
“Alright. Not as fast as a Horse or Northern Stag. But works for me.”
The door to the Vault slid open as they entered the security room. One of the guards addressed them.
“Good Hunting to you boys.”
The two Rangers walked through the entrance and over to the stables ready to set out.
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Excellent, very interesting, I look forward to reading more.


Only one point to clarify; I take it that there are two sets of 'Rangers' being Arctic and those serving the NCR; why the similar titles?



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Excellent, very interesting, I look forward to reading more.


Only one point to clarify; I take it that there are two sets of 'Rangers' being Arctic and those serving the NCR; why the similar titles?



In my Lore, during the battle of Anchorage, Alaska State Troopers, and Police Officers were trained by Texas Rangers to handle new challenges. The protection of the Pipeline, hunting down Chinese Sleeper agents and Soldiers in hiding. As well and specialized tactics. Essentially these branches of the Police forces were to hold Alaska while troops were sent overseas, just in case the Chinese tried something again.


Quite a few Texas Rangers were in the middle of creating a branch similar to their own in Alaska and were trapped here when the Bombs fell. To be honest though, I really liked the idea of Desert Rangers in Alaska. But I made it work.


Chapter 4
One thirty five PM, Anchorage time. A woman with long raven hair and voluptuous curves sat at a desk while she ran her left palm over her face in exhaustion. Reports had come in all throughout the last few days of what was foreign troopers called the NCR, her scouts had hung back and performed reconnaissance collecting as much information as they could without making direct contact. The folder that compiled their findings had already been sent off to the Arctic Rangers at Vault 118. What ever these foreign troops wanted with Alaska it was best that the Rangers confront them first.
Her faction the Bush Company had a long history with the Rangers, in fact she herself was a Ranger roughly ten years prior. She had taken the mantle of Madame after the previous one had passed away, and she has not regretted her choice. In fact she felt a sense of pride, solidarity even among the working class girls who strutted about half naked. But sex was not the only service they performed, it was well known that the Bush trained and employed Spies and Assassins to do the dirty work of others. They would of course never accept a contract to kill anyone lawful but everyone else was fair game.
Since the arrival of the NCR other factions had begun to move, her greatest fear would be if Zhang forces intercepted these foreign troops and executed them. For they long had held a grudge with all those born on American soil. These former Chinese sleeper agents and Soldiers that evaded capture founded their own settlement in the state’s capital of Juneau. Contact with Stonewall; Juneau’s Major faction of former raiders indicated increased activity on their side. It wouldn’t be long before they made a move she thought. As a knock rapped on her door.
“Madame Valmet? It’s Red Rose, may I enter?”
Valmet sighed and set down the papers and brushed aside the strands of hair that fell in front of her face. “Enter.” She said showing signs of her fatigue.
“Madame, a new report for you. The Vanderbilts have sent agents to investigate the presence of NCR troopers.”
Valmet balled her hand into a fist and rested her jaw on top of it. “Just what I need, what could the arrogant and egotistical self proclaimed Mafioso gain by sending out his agents.”
Red Rose was about to speak before she was cut off by Valmet. “Perhaps he wishes to expand his influence, yes that might be it.”
“Madame, that does seem to be the case. Given his past dealings with other Factions and his rapid expanse over the criminal elements of the region; it is a possible conclusion.”
Valmet dropped her head silently into her hand, taking but a moment to think this through.
Her head quickly raised and she addressed Miss Rose. ”Radio this information to North, he needs his men to intercept these troopers before Vanderbilt does, there’s no telling what he’d do to get his way. More importantly I am worried about the Zhang. We don’t need any other factions clashing over this.”
“Understood Madame.”
Red Rose rushed out of the room and headed down to the communications room. As Valmet lounged back in her chair. “Two hundred years. Two hundred years, and nay a peep from the outside world. What will the future bode for us now.”
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Chapter 5

6:37 PM Cordova time

NCR troopers have just reached a lone Cabin out in the woods, that they had cautiously approached. “Ranger Veilmont?” One of the Troopers asked. “Should we move closer, the place looks abandoned?”

Matthew Veilmont sat crouched in tall brush alongside the other troopers. He raised a pair of binoculars and eyed the windows. Small windows, glass partially exposed through the boards nailed on the outside. Veilmont thought to himself as he lowered his arm and turned to the others.

“We go in, you three.” He said pointing them out. “Move around the left side. The four of you.” He said pointing out four other men. “Go around back, the rest of you with me; we’ll advance slowly.”

They crept up towards the Cabin unsure of what to expect. The troopers gave out hand signs giving the all clear. Rangers Veilmont and Samuels breached the door as it opened with no resistance. The other troopers called out. “All clear!!” They began scanning the rooms.

Once they had opened every door they gathered in what appeared to be a Living room. “Everything's all clear.” Veimont spoke.

Samuels turned to one of the troopers. “Lieutenant Richards! Check this place for supplies, bring Beckard with you just in case you find trouble.”

“Yes Sir! Come on Becard, let’s see if there’s anything in the fridge.”

One of the troopers spotted something on the table. “Veilmont, Sir! Might want to take a look at this. Seems to be a map.”

Veilmont strode over.”Good find Private First Class Harper . Let’s take a look. Hmm, it’s marked. Looks like we’re at this marker. Cabin number three hundred and five. That means there’s a lot of cabins.”

While Veilmont looked over the map, Richards and Beckard were in the Kitchen going through the cabinets. “Not much food here Richards, just loads of, homemade beer?”

“Wildberry Mead.” Richards said looking at the label. “Yeah all homebrews. They must really like their drinks.” Richards said as he cracked one open taking a whiff of it.”Whew, smells sweet. So wanna bet a shoeshine this is drinkable?”

“Ha! I’ll take that bet.”

“Well Beckard, here you go, bottoms up.”

Beckard held the bottle and prepared himself to take a drink form it. “Let’s hope I don’t get sick.”

Richards egged him on as Beckard took a gulp and downed a mouthful of Mead.

“Ahh, way too sweet.”

“You feeling alright though Beckard?”

“Yeah, i guess. So wanna tell the Rangers what we found?”

Richards nodded and the two walked back into the main room.

“We’re a ways off from any civilization.” Veilmont spoke. “Looks like there’s a small village in Cordova about a day and a half out from here. But these.” He said with his finger on a point on the map. “These are starred, unlike the dots scattered about I assume these mean cities or major settlements.”

Richards and Beckard walked on in.”Were back, didn’t find much just Cram, stale chips, and loads of Homebrewed Alcohol.”

Ranger Samuels looked over to them. “Well this map has been useful, that radio in the corner not so much. Wires have been chewed on, rodents or the like. For now let’s assume these people have a radio station or two, and see what we can pick up in the morning. Lieutenant Duran, see if you can’t re-wire our radios into the antenna."

“Right away SIr!” She saluted and pulled out a tool kit.

Veilmont turned to their Field Medic Jessie Keller and spoke.”Keller, see what medical supplies you can find; pair up if something were to happen.”

Keller nodded, and took another trooper with her; while the others began to settle in for the night. Wood was brought in from the pile outside. And if they needed more there was an axe and saw to fell a tree.

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Chapter 6
Writer's note. I censored a few words here and there, hopefully I can use the word Stripper without concern. Nothing smexy, and no 18+ content. Just mild cuddling.

7:03 PM Anchorage time. Bush Company Headquarters.

Vivian and Ashe were holding each other in an embrace on a metal framed bed with Ashe resting on Vi’s ample bosom. As they finished an old Holodisk scavenged from the Library just blocks away. Vi who was part Caucasian and Yupik as was her father had her hand resting on Ashe’s waist.

“Still can’t believe you found one of these old things, I thought almost all of them had been lost to time.” Vi spoke softly over the ending credits of the Holodisk.

Ashe the short raven haired girl, who had more scars than cleavage on her athletic body. Lifted her head.”Found it behind a collapsed wall, no one looked behind it because no one could move the wall by themselves.”

The light flickered across the wooden walls of the small room devoid of decorations. While Vi sat there staring into Ashe’s eyes for a moment's time.

“You dosed up on Chems didn’t you, for that?” Vivian shifted her weight and began to sit upright.

“No, for you. But since you’re so ungrateful maybe I won’t bother next time.” Ashe furrowed her brows and her scars wrinkled slightly.

“Ashe..” Vi said as she sighed and tried to speak more calmly.”You know that’s not what I meant, I get worried when you dose, I know you can take the toxins but it still scares me. Anyone else but you would probably die.”

“I am fine. I’m always fine. Chems don’t work on me like they would you.”

“I don’t want you relapsing, I’ve seen what happens when you relapse. You’re just not you, you have an unnatural hunger for chems and it drives you mad.”

Ashe snapped her head towards Vi, out of indignation.”I’m not like the others, their blood may run through my veins, unlike them I have my sanity, and my anger. I won’t lose myself before I do what must be done.” Her eyes glanced over to the empty bottles of mead and ale, as she was looking for an excuse to storm off and cool down. “We’re outta Ale, I’ll be back.”

“Ashe..” Vivian said as she leaned forward.

“I said I’ll be back.”

Ashe stood up from the bed, and stormed off slamming the door behind her making her way downstairs from her room, past the moans and squeaking beds for paying customers that were being entertained in private rooms. The hallways were dimly lit giving the wooden walls a warm sensual feel, and the wooden walls have been replaced numerous times over the centuries that almost no one knows where it all came from.

Once Ashe rounded the corner into the main lobby where topless women served drinks and women danced on stage over tossed bills. Lights strobed up and down the stage as customers eyed the spectacle that was Rave Mouse, she may not have been as endowed as the other Strippers, or as tall but the rainbow of color that dyed her hair and the piercings that covered her body tantalized and titillated the audience and she gyrated on stage with unnatural movements.

Ashe walked past without batting an eye at the scene. She knew Mouse, and although she quite enjoyed the wild dancing on stage it was pure torment on her bones. But that’s not what she was here for a bar overloaded on drunken patrons lay just before her, and a woman with spiked hair worked the bar as Ashe walked up.

“Evenin’ Ashe. What can I do you for?”

“More drinks Evelyn , maybe some strong ones.”

The Bartender eyes her a bit, but then reaches under the counter.

While she sets the bottles of alcohol on the counter top. Another patron just farther down is acting like a drunken fool. “Soo I says to the wh***, just get down in the water and we’ll ride your ass across the river.” The few other men all dressed in work garments and one with a workers tool belt, belted out a drunken laugh. “Hey, what? That one of ‘em freaks. Yeah, one of them damned Bloodpack Wh*** Children.” The room fell deathly silent as not a sound was made, Rave Mouse had even stopped dancing on stage.

“Even have that.. Wh*** Friend of yours. Yeah what was her…”

The man barely spat out the last word as Ashe’s smaller scarred hands had already wrapped around his neck with a speed that stunned the onlookers. Her own inhuman strength lifting him off the floor. One could say in this moment Ashe’s Jade eyes were black as coal from the seething rage. The man’s face turned blue as the life was chocked out of him while he struggled to no avail. Not a single soul intervened nay did anyone move a muscle the Bush’s Enforcer wasn’t one to be angered. She didn't wield a nearly nine pound twin headed spear for show after all. And in the Bush Company disrespect was punished severely, even death was an acceptable form in unique situations such as this. This would be the last time a drop of alcohol touched his lip as his hands fell to his side and his eyes rolled back into his skull.
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Chapter 7


May 4th 5:36 PM Wittier - Vanderbilt City and Gambling Hall; formerly the Buckner Building.


Inside the halls of Alaska’s largest city under a single roof a former Military barracks that had all the amenities one could ask for. Indoor pools, Shopping centers, Repair shops, and of course Gambling. The Buckner building was to have everything but most of all it sheltered most of Whittier’s residents during the final hours of the Great War. A nonessential target as the building was merely city property kept in shape through the budget as a Historic building.


These halls contained many souls all under the influence of the Vanderbilts, after Jordan Bates the previous President of the Buckner Building had an unfortunate accident. Or so his daughter tells the story. Everyone knew of course that her father was a tyrant, who drank and beat his own wife but never his daughter. He spoiled her, though no baubles could erase her own fear of the man; only herself and Barron Vanderbilt knew what really happened, that Carol fell in love with the hired help and begged the man to murder her own father.


Barron who under his own greed and lust for power expanded the operations of Carol’s gangs of thugs and drug runners. Taking the entire city as his territory; greedy as Barron may be his people either love him or fear him, but never without reason. And deep in these halls the sounds of bones breaking and knuckles slamming against flesh resounded through the building. As a large crowd bet and drank watching two men duke it out in a ring under spotlights all who suffer from the strongest bare knuckle brawler disease.


A man tall and slim approached a spectator who watched intensly while the current Chap fought it out for everything. The title, his wealth,his home. His raspy voice spoke. “Worried about the Boss are you? Don’t be, just look at him. Although his opponent is a Samoan, one of biggest I’ve seen in fact; Barron is handling him quite well. He adapted his style for accuracy and defense. And that stance of his is like a Hoplite; left arm held out like a shield to deflect blows, right arm poised to strike at a moments notice.”


The woman obviously befuddled turned and spoke. “What is a Hoplite, Wraith?”


He cursed under his breath. “Smoothskins.” Before speaking in a manner that she could hear.”Before your time, well before your time.”


The woman dismissed the Wraith’s ramblings and continued on watching the show with eager anticipation. As Barron ducked under a right strike deflecting it up and off to the side, his own right impacted the Samoan’s jaw sending out a resounding echo of smashing flesh as his head recoiled back and he took a step back regaining his footwork.


The Samoan went for a left hook as Barron side-stepped back with his right foot only to have the punch clip his left shoulder sending him off balance as he twirled to the side and the Samoan went in for a uppercut. Barron against the chain fence of the ring shifted his stance to his favored left straight connecting with the Samoan’s face and nose, while his uppercut went through the air.


Barron watched as the Samoan fell to the ring floor with a heavy thud. As the crowd stood speechless. They had been at it for six rounds, the farthest anyone has made it thus far. The crowd cheered and broke out into a roar, as Barron walked off the stage and spied a Wraith over to the side of the ring. “Boss. Good fight for a warmup. Should’ve ended it quickly.”


A smirk ran across his weary face.”That would be no fun Smithe. And I aim to please my fans. But enough about that, I trust you have news for me so let’s talk elsewhere.”


The Wraith nodded as they strolled to Barron’s office. Where Pictures of old lined the walls, and a liquor cabinet filled to the brim. Barron sat in a wooden chair hand engraved and decorative, with a firm but yet comfy cushion.


“The boys will make land tonight, they sailed across the channel and as we estimated will reach these visitors before North and his Rangers.”


Barron poured a glass of Whiskey into a glass of ice, and offered Smithe a glass.


“Good, I’ll be sure to make our guests feel right at home in my stockades. We’ll know our enemy and what riches their lands hold.”


“Sure thing boss, so long as they don’t mobilize en mass against us.”


“Let me worry about that, once I show North how hostile they can be I’ll make him march off to war.” Barron grinned as the whiskey glass pressed against his lips, the ice clinked as the liquid flowed from the glass.

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Chapter 8


Forests of Cordova 6:53 AM Earlier that day.


Alma Duran had worked through late in the night splicing wires and soldering metal. The rooftop antenna that connected to her field radio gave her a spotty connection at best. But the Rangers appeared happy enough with her work given the limited materials she had to work with. The burned tips of her fingers turned the knobs and she kept adjusting till she found a signal.


“Thi.. Mag.. ..dio Here wi.h the ne.s. Re.orts.”


One of the Rangers spoke up interrupting everyone attempting to listen to the broadcast. “Anything you can do Duran? We can barely make out that garbled message.” He said with a slight irritation in his voice.


Duran nodded and pulled Harper closer. “You’re going to need to hop on the roof and turn the dish, it should be mounted on a pivot. Turn it slowly and listen to my directions.”


Ranger Samuels looked to the man.”Be careful up there soldier. Take Private Ira Kane with you.”


“Of course Sir!” Harper responded with haste. As they went outside and climbed up on the roof.


As Harper scrambled up on to the roof, Duran began shouting orders.”Start by turning it clockwise..” Duran and the others listened to the broadcast as it’s reception worsened. “STOP!! Turn it counter clockwise!” The signal jumped about until it stabilized. “STOP!! STOP!! Don’t touch it any further! We got the signal! I repeat, we have the signal!”


Ranger Veilmont stood by the window peering outside as Kane helped Harper off the roof, whilst the radio broadcasted clearly. A gust of wind blew through the trees on an otherwise clear summers’ day.


“That’s all for the news, see you all in an hour, till then here’s some music, What a Wonderful World. By Louis Armstrong…”


Ranger Felicia Buck walked back inside after scouting the nearby area, taking off her helmet she joined the group. “Wow, we got music now. Good job Duran. Anything of note Veilmont?” She said as her boots trailed in dirt.


Disappointed Veilmont spoke. “Not a thing Buck. We missed the show.”


Buck sat down on the floor next to them. “I say we stick around for a few more hours, give Keller a bit of rest eat and then move out. Using the directions you gave me I scouted on ahead, didn’t get close enough to the Village, everything looks clear at least. No Raiders, no Beasts. It’ll likely take a most of the day before we reach the location.”


Ranger Veilmont nodded in approval. “Sounds good, Duran get some rest.”


Duran stepped away shoulders slumping in exhaustion, towards the bed rolls laid out the previous night. The sun shining on her back while the others sat around and discussed their plans.


-- Current Time 8:23 PM - Cordova Time --


Heavy boot steps from the NCR Troopers stomped over dirt and grass while Ranger Buck whacked away branches with a machete. Until they reached the outskirts of the Village, all wooden buildings and ramshackle shacks. Nets and Tools laid about with the smell of manure and fish lofting in the air. The one thing that stood out among all of that, was not a soul in sight. No Villagers, or Fishermen. The Rangers took positions and sprinted towards cover, the back walls of houses and some log piles provided plenty of cover.


“Samuels. This isn’t right, could be an ambush.” Buck whispered from behind a shed.


Samuels scanned the area and cocked his head to look at Buck. “May be, May be. Keller, hang back. Veilmont see that wheelbarrow in the street? Try and reach it, tells us what you see.”


Veilmont nodded and rushed the wheelbarrow. Pushing himself against it. With a better view of the Village he could see that something had been dragged through the dirt roads, shoes and weapons littered the road. “Something attacked. Bullet casings and articles of clothing lay in the street, hold on.. You hear that Samuels?”


“I don’t hear a thing, what does it sound like?”

“If I had to guess, buzzing.” Veilmont took a second to listen longer. “And it’s getting closer.”

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Chapter 9


Writer’s note. There’ll be something interesting next chapter.. I can’t wait to write it out.


Cordova 7:23 PM. Barn Restaurant and Inn.


Old Man Burris, or Nathan to his friends had gathered what townsfolk he could, those fortunate enough not to have been killed. A man named Redding had tried to make a run for the gun shop on the other side of the village past the shacks and markets on Ingress street and Chase Avenue, but the Bald Giant Hornets had already honed in on him, impaling him with their propelled stingers. Steve watched through a telescope and grimly relayed what had happened.


“Damn it Redding. I told you to stay with the group.” Nathan spoke with a clinched fist.


“Grandfather, calm down please. You don’t want your heart to give out.”


“Constance, my dear. It’ll take more than this for me to keel over.” Nathan turned to another resident Kevin Wyatt. “My friend how much food and ammo do we have?”


Kevin shook his head dishearteningly.”Not enough Nathan. We’ve plenty of ammunition, but for Thirty people we’ll run out of food before the week. Unless we can get to the shack out back we simply won’t have enough.”


“Damn the Harding brothers! Fools the lot of them. They brought this upon us.” Nathan yelled out as he gripped his chest.


“Come now Nathan, you should listen to Constance, can’t go having you kick the bucket yet. The Hardings are dead, the first to die after the Hornets swarmed the place. Don’t know how the hell they got their hands on the Queen, but the rest took care of them.”


“Your. Right. Let’s get the doors barred off before these insects try to barge their way in. Someone grab the nail gun in the hall closet, and break a few tables for wood. Gonna need to keep them at bay long as we can till the Rangers arrive. If they ever arrive. I don’t know if they heard our signal, we lost the tower before we heard back from them.”


“Let’s get a move on people, they be coming any minute…” As Nathan stood by the door alongside a few other townsfolk, shots rang out. Automatic fire, a grenade even. “Hold on, who's out there, give me the telescope!” Nathan took the telescope from Kevin's hand and peered through the lens over by the gun shop armed men in unusual military style fatigues, and Riot Gear fought back the encroaching swarm.


“Buck!! Do you have any more grenades, I’m all out!”


“Just one Samuels! And it looks like I’m going to be using it, SHRAPNEL INCOMING!” The grenade’s explosive power shredded a box full of glass bottles, sending shards in all directions.


“Get down Beckard!” Duran yelled as she tackled him to the ground.


“Just what are these things, this swarm is massive! Running low on ammo, these things move far too quickly. Can’t get a bead on any of them.” Veilmont said as he chambered a few 45.70 rounds into his gun.


As Nathan watched them face off against a full hive of Hornets, he knew they wouldn’t last. “Constance.. Bring me the loudspeaker.”


“Grandfather. But.” Constance was cut off by her Grandfather's stern face. “Yes Grandfather.”


Nathan took the loudspeaker in hand and flipped the on switch, as he opened the door. “REACH THE OTHER SIDE OF THE VILLAGE!! HURRY!” He set down the loudspeaker and the other men at the door understood what needed to be done. They and Nathan picked up flamers and sprayed a burning trail of fire through the air keeping the Hornets away from the entrance.

Veilmont looked across the village lot which had numerous houses to see men setting fire to the gigantic black and partly yellow insects. If they were going to make a decision it had to be now. “DO AS THEY SAID! We make a mad dash while we can!” The other Troopers were quick to agree, as they ran wildly across the land. Wilbert was stung and lifted into the air by one of the bugs, as Buck yelled out.”WILBERT! They got Wilbert, damn it all!” Wilbert wasn’t the only one Orville O’Harris took a stinger in his leg after a Hornet shot it from its abdomen. Samuels ran over and threw him over his shoulders all while the other troopers covered them best they could. They felt the immense heat coming from the streams of fire as they ducked into the building. Nathan and the others right behind them.

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Chapter 10

Off the Shores of Cordova, Prince William Sound 6:59 PM

Off the shores of Cordova a ship sailed ever closer to its docks. A Pre-War personal Yacht the size of a large fishing boat. The crew all Vanderbilt’s men dressed in fancy suits wielding submachine guns, shotguns and rifles. There were fifty men armed and ready to go ashore and unknowingly into the nest of Giant Hornets. As the boat cruised into the docks the only thing to greet them was a flurry of stinging insects. The men went into a panic taking limited cover on the boat.

“There’s too many of them! We can’t dock!!”

“We must the Boss wants these newcomers.”

*Thump* went a stinger as it pierced the port side of the boat.

“There must be hundreds of them!! Why Cordova! Why now!”

“No way of knowing now, but we can’t take this assault and there’s no way we’re storming the docks and overtaking the Giant Hornets. We have no choice we’re turning back.”

“Bring us around!! And quickly! They’ll swarm the ship!”

The boat pushed through the waters as it turned about and made it’s way out of Cordova’s port.

“The Boss won’t be pleased.”

“No. No he won’t. Let’s just hope he’s already let off some steam. It’s our only chance.”

Barn Restaurant and Inn 7:39 PM

Survivors rushed the door holding planks of wood taken from just about whatever they could find, popping nails into the door as fast as they could. Samuels turned to their saviors clearly bothered by the giant insects.”What were those things!?”

Buck spoke right after Samuels so quickly that Nathan had no time to speak.”What he means to say is thank you for helping us.”

Nathan gave these outsiders the once over before speaking up.”Well you’re welcome, wish I hadn’t though. We were already short on supplies, and your injured friend likely has poison coursing through his veins. Those things are Bald Faced Giant Hornets, and they’re exceptionally venomous. I’m Nathan. By the way.”

Veilmont sat crouched next to Keller as she removed the stinger.”We need to apply antivenom Veilmont. Help me hold him down.” She said as she quickly wrapped his leg applying ointment before making it taut.

“Of course.” Veilmont said as he held O’Harris down by his legs and torso.

Kevin rushed over a bottle in hand.”Not sure I’d do that. Your antivenom might not work. Unless it was made with the venom of the creature that stung him, in this case the Giant Hornet.”

“And what do you propose, let him die?” Keller said angrily.

“No.” Kevin said as he kneeled closer.”Here give him this Waxen Jam. It will purge the toxins from his system, it’s also quite unpleasant. It will save his life.”

Keller looked into Veilmont’s eyes and said.”You trust him?”

Veilmont nodded.”If they wanted us dead, they’d have left us to the Hornets. We’re trusting you stranger.”

Kevin steadily poured the concoction into O’Harris’s open lips. As it collected in his mouth the taste was far from being unpleasant, it had a slimy consistency and above all it smelled like someone’s feet. The Trooper tried to cough it up, but Keller and Kevin held his mouth shut as he gulped it down.

“It has a rancid smell. How long?” Veilmont said while he plugged his nose.

As Kevin stood up he spoke casually.”Not too long, should be healthy in a few minutes.”

O’Harris began to speak, coughing and gagging for fresh air.”That’s the worst thing I’ve tasted in my life. It smelled worse than Beckard’s feet.”

“You alright O’Harris?”

“Yeah Doc. I’ll live, but I’ll need something to wash it down.”

“Well good to see your friend will make it, but I still need to know who you people are? Your definite strangers to this land. What are your goals?”

“We’re..” Buck said looking at O’Harris. “With the New California Republic, and we’re here to make contact with the local powers. Specifically the friendly ones.”

Nathan began to sweat, he showed signs of agitation at the words NCR. But never could he imagine the New California Republic would make their way to Alaska.”I.. Uh - see. Uhmm.” He said as if to clear his throat. “You’ll want to find the Arctic Rangers then, hopefully they’re on their way. We sent out a distress signal right before the Hornets took out the radio tower, we still don’t know if the Rangers received our message.” Nathan said partly distressed as he concealed his Colt 1911.

Veilmont joined them.”Those Giant Hornets why are they here?”

“Couple of idiots managed to sneak a Queen out of her nest, and after getting her to town the rest of the nest followed. My guess whatever they used to calm her down wore off, and their plans for her went up in smoke after that. Anyways, I um need to check on our supplies, adjust the rations for more mouths.” Nathan said eagerly looking for a way out.

“Thank you again Nathan, to all of you.” Buck said as she eyed some markings on Nathan’s gun. “That symbol.” She said inquisitively. “It’s the thirteen commonwealths. The symbol of the Enclave. Odd, that mean anything to you?” Her tone taking a more aggressive approach.

A defensive Nathan spoke. “No it’s just an old handgun. Many guns are, um scavenged. It’s just something old I swear.”

“Now miss.” Another Villager walked up. “You’ve no right to speak to Nathan like that. We saved your skins it’s best to not stir up any trouble.”

Buck reached for her gun as the other Villagers did the same. Veilmont stepped in hoping to defuse the situation.”Look. It was just a question. We’ve no need to resort to hostilities. Any chance you're mistaken Buck?”

“Could be sir. Not about that symbol though, I would recognize it anywhere. It could be something scavenged.”

Veilmont inched forward to Buck.”Then we’ll leave it at that. Just a misunderstanding. Apologize to the nice people Buck.”

“I was simply mistaken. That’s all. Forgive my misunderstanding.”

“Good. Good Buck. Let’s all just calm down. We’ve no need to resort to violence. We already have giant insects outside the doors.”

Nathan grabbed the arm of one of the Villagers.”Let’s worry more about the Hornets. It was a mistake.” The crowd quieted down but the tension was still thick. Outside however in the edge of the forest something was stirring in the trees. Hornets would soon be the least of their worries.

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Chapter 11


- Vault 118 -- 7:23 PM -


A woman with a sleek waist and curly feathered blond hair that touched her shoulders walked past a table as she gingerly ran her fingers over the top of the large oaken table. Carved and cut into sections from massive tree trunks. She held reports of the various goings on regarding far flung villages and the movements of the highest ranking Rangers.


And in his chair sat North Ashland a platter of hot food to his left a warm drink to his right and in the middle more papers. He looked at her weary eyed.”Miss Heartgrove? What reports have the Rangers sent in?”


Sera stopped and sat on the edge of the table one leg over the other just a ways off to the right of North. “Just general reports sir.” North picked up his drink and took a sip as Sera continued reading. “Lance Thompson seems to be off the grid again, he’s likely charging into raider territory somewhere. - Cobra, however checked in from Nome. He took care off a Tyrant - or Kushtaka in Inuit tongue. -”


“I’m well aware of what a Kushtaka. Poor Otter. Animals shouldn’t get too comfortable around Humanoids, it just causes trouble and death.” North commented. Interrupting Sera as she spoke.


“Yes of course. Just being accurate. Now then - King stopped by Mendoza’s territory in Huffman. The reports Mendoza files can’t be right, spectral beings, walking dead. Hogwash. I’m sure it’s just Cultists using some hallucinogenic gases. King will report her findings, and give Mendoza a hand in rooting out some entrenched Cultists.” Sera stood up stretching her back as she slowly sauntered about the room again.


“And finally. The White Swallow. She hasn’t checked in for weeks now. Either she’s gone on one of her Walkabouts. Or somethings happened to her.”


North sat down the fork he was using and turned to Sera.”Swallow, in danger. Unlikely. She’s a resourceful one, that and few want to bother with her. She’ll fry anyone one her bad side with a few zaps from her fingers.”


Sera gave a slight nod, and spoke unconvinced.”Yes a powerful Psyker she may be, still still resorts to swords and crossbows. Not as effective as more modern weaponry. Good for animals she may encounter not well armed raiders or slavers.”


“Now onto Claire and Jonathan, they’re still a days out from Cordova. Which means Barron will already be in the lead.” Sera said finally reaching the last page as she set down the clipboard.


“We’ll be playing tag with Vanderbilt soon enough then. He’s greedy and short sided. He knows not what could happen. Godspeed you two. Before anyone else begins to move.”


- The Forest - A Days Out from Cordova - 7:41 PM -


“We’ll be making camp soon, want to play another round of poker again tonight? I’ll go easy on you - for a while that is.” Claire said with a wide grin.


Jonathan distorted his face at the thought in annoyance.”After last nights game, no. I owe you twelve bottles of expensive ale you swindled out of me.”


“Hey.” Claire said gleefully. “I gave you the chance to gracefully bow out, but nope. Still kept going. I swear gambling was made for suckers like you. - Wait. See that over there? Those docks are new.”


“I do see them. And they seem to be crawling with Santa’s little Slavers. They’re up to no good that is for sure.”


“Let’s go and introduce ourselves, I’ll make for that nearby tree line, you charge down the middle. I’ll cover with my sniper.”


“Sounds like a plan.” Jonathan said.


“Don’t go dying on me, I still want those twelve bottles.”


Jonathan smirked and whispered.”Ever the Con Man.” Before riding off.

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