Stepping back inside the Crack Shack, I find it well stocked with food and misc. On the way back to Megaton I weigh up my options. Quite literally in this case – carrying four weapons around simply isn’t practical with so little inventory space.
No point having two pistols, and the rifle is too large for my purposes, so I’ll get the dead bird’s gun patched up and sell everything else.
Bigger matters, now. I’ll have over 600 caps once I sell this lot. My initial thought is to buy that portable bed Mad Moira is selling, but something holds me back. Yeah, I want to get away from the cultologists, but kipping outside isn’t exactly safe. And then, as I zoom out to take a screenshot, it hits me.
I have to change this ridiculous “armour”.
I buy the best protective wear I can afford: a leather outfit in mint condition, over twice as effective as the idiotic tit-wear I was using, and lighter to boot. It costs over half my account, but it’s worth it.
Stumping up to have my new revolver repaired and cleaned comes next, and after some deliberation, most of the remainder goes on on a stimpack (healing) and a large backpack, consigning my rather tasteful bumbag to history.
Now to try on my new duds. I’m looking forward to wearing some professional gear for a change instead of the pathetic schoolboy fetishwear I’ve been forced to use up unti… oh for fuck’s sake.
Look, all I’m saying is that I will stop complaining about nonsense like this when game developers start making male armour wearers run around with their pecs open to the elements and their bollocks swinging freely in the breeze. It’s only fair.
Sigh. Well, it’ll have to do, as nobody’s selling anything better that I can afford, and it’s certainly an improvement over the Scrapheap Strippergram look. I spend the last of my cash on more ammunition.
On the way out I stop briefly to get started on the Explorer. The Explorer motorbike is my only form of fast travel (discounting the escorts I can pay exorbitant sums to for transport between a handful of settlements), but to use it I will have to scrounge up plenty of scrap for repairs, and then the ingredients to mix up some fuel. It’ll probably be a long-term project, not least as I need to find the fuel recipe first.
I use some metal on it now, taking its condition to 1%. Woo! Get your motor runnin’!
Back in Springvale, I discover that I can refill my water bottles from a hydrant, and it’s no more radioactive than the stuff in Megaton. Free supplies!
I continue scouring houses for salvage. Nothing too exciting in the next few houses, however I do see that the town’s school is largely intact, and appears to have occupants.
Sneaking up for a closer look, I detect raiders. I count at least two on one corner, and another two inside. For the first time, I’m feeling confident about my chances in a fight, so I prepare the battleground with my two remaining frag mines, and move closer.
My approach is spotted too soon, so I shrug and run for cover, cackling as the first mine detonates.
The second mine goes off as I round another boulder, and to hurry things along I sling all of my frag grenades blindly. I hunker down, ready to pick off any survivors as they round the corner. Only one does.
One shot misses. The second disarms her, giving me time to take this screenshot, and then a far less benign type of shot. Raider down. I quickly pat her down for ammo, mindful of the danger nearby.
Time to pull out, regroup, and assess the damage.
My plan to dash back to Megaton and let the caravan guards outside polish off any pursuers is amended when I see a lone woman charging to my aid with a sword. A frickin’ sword. I may be new to this wasteland wanderer thing, but every natural survivor knows on an instinctive level to never, ever go up against anyone crazy enough to bring a sword to a gunfight.
I let her get on with it while I trade with the caravan. She casually walks back a while later, unscathed, with a bloody sword. Must remember to ask if she’s single.
I pass some more of the red armoured guys I saw yesterday on the way back. They wander past, along with their horrifying brain-bot.
I am suddenly rather glad I didn’t murder their friend yesterday.
Keeping my pistol ready, I creep around the rocky area between Megaton and Springvale School, surveying the damage. Between my explosives and the berserker charge of Sword Broad, there are three raiders down. Looty looty!
It’s getting late in the day, so I take it easy for a little while, chasing around another molerat and doing a little more scavenging. I also punch out an angry cow. Maybe Deitrek is onto something after all.
It seems clear that Springvale’s Crack Shack only had the one occupant, but with those raiders just a stone’s throw away, I’m reluctant to bed down there, even if the alternative is sleeping with the Megaton freaks.
So screw it. I have armour, ammo, and a stimpack, and with their numbers whittled down, I think I can take them.
The rear of the building is blown open, and I manage to sneak up to its entrance, spotting two of them patrolling on the first floor.
I’m seen before I can get a kill in, but they’re trapped, so I hold position and have a brief stand-off with the guy hunkered down behind the pillar. A second charges with a melee weapon, but Cass puts a bullet in his mouth at point blank before he connects, putting him down instantly. I’ve lost track of the third raider, so pull back a little to regroup.
She gets the same idea, and runs out of the ruins to take cover at the other end of the building. We exchange inaccurate fire for several tense moments. I’ve taken a hit or two already and with every shot from her hunting rifle a potential killer, I need to shut her down fast.
Dashing from cover to cover between her slow-firing shots, I close some of the gap, but can’t get a good angle – her cover is too good. With ammunition limited, I need to exploit her weakness.
Hunting rifles are slow, and terrible at short range. So…
With a flaily, but still fatal one-four combination, Cass leaves that sucker on the scrap yard where she belongs. Damn straight. Not sure I dig the Ned Kelly look, but it’s certainly more protection than my goggles offer. It’ll do for now.
I look around for the first raider, who it turns out I’d killed with my last shot before his friends appeared. Blind fire kills now! And to think I woke up a fearful pauper.
There are probably more of them inside, but I won’t push my luck any further today. Besides, I’m hungry. Back to Megaton, where I relax with a meal and beer in the Brass Lantern…
… and prepare to take care of a little matter that’s been troubling me all weekend.