Another bright and clear day starts at dawn for our young Cass, although thanks to the hills on every side of her, I still can’t tell which way is West.
I head back up the hill to what I suspect is the North for what turns out to be an exciting morning, with Bomb Lady reappearing after 12 hours of apparently running around screaming, and asking for help again. It’s only when I refuse, and later try to sneak up on her to pick her pocket, that she finally gets round to exploding. Oops.
Fortunately I’m out of the blast zone, and as nobody comes to investigate, I go to see if I could pick those funky goggles off her corpse. It’s then that the Raider opens fire.
Raider! I take cover behind a pile of scrap and shoot back with my pistol. Despite taking a bullet, I win! Our Cass gunned that sucker down like a very panicky pro. Hell yeah. It looks like he was alone, too, so I go to see if he was carrying anything useful.
Turns out he’s a she. Damn, sisters really are doing it for themselves. She has a better pistol than mine, but it’s in pretty lousy shape, and carries different ammo. Three bullets. She also has some armour, a baseball bat and some goggles, which I hastily strip from her still warm corpse and take into the shop to get changed in peace.
Huh. I see Raiders adhere to the ‘crappy fantasy novel’ definition of ‘armour’. Some decent plating around the shoulder and legs, but nothing to cover my back, stomach, chest, or basically any vital organs at all. You may sigh wearily at this kind of pandering, however it actually makes sense. You see, exposing one’s sternum and as much of the abdomen as possible will lead your attackers to believe that both are impervious to bullets. It’s the same reason nobody ever shoots Batman in the chin. Thus, in a combat situation one must cover only the least vulnerable parts of the body. And the sexiest parts, naturally. Mary Whitehouse’s descendants may well have survived the apocalypse, and without law and order to stop them, who knows where they’ll draw the line?
I’ll not have a bad word said about the goggles, though. Just so that’s on the record.
In any case, this is more protection than the cloth I was wearing, so it’ll keep. It also looks pretty fierce, so maybe I’ll look like less of a target for any other chancers. It’ll certainly stop unsolicited buttock slaps.
Time to see what Bomb Lady left for me. Her funky goggles are nowhere to be found, nor is the head they were attached to. Or her arms. Or feet.
This is not a nice neighbourhood.
She had very little on her, aside from another lead pipe. I take it and realise I have no way to carry all this stuff, and just as I’m pondering what to leave behind, I’m jumped by a FRICKIN’ HUGE scorpion.
After swinging wildly with my new bat I connect several blows on its enormous claws, doing some real damage, but I take a couple of stings and a slash myself. Then another bunch of scorpions show up. A few pistol shots do nothing to deter them, so I enact plan B.
Dropping both my lead pipes, I run like buggery back towards camp. Thankfully, they don’t give chase for long. A glance at my health shows how close this encounter was – I’m down to a mere sliver already. I chug my bottle of healing (and highly addictive) buffout and clumsily use a blood pack to keep me from death’s door.
Rough day, and it’s not even noon. I’m low on water and ammo, and completely out of healing supplies. Ulp. Nothing for it but to rest for a few hours and get over the worst of the damage.