I do it all for the Glory II
As daybreak commenced, the journey to Ridgeton did too. Richard lead the way, as Greg and his Brahmin followed the remaining three guards. Mile after mile, Greg kept wondering if Elizabeth was the one. She kept gazing back over her shoulder from her fathers side.
Despite the nuances of her watching him, Greg imagined a future with her behind a stove, slaving away at his dinner. “Elizabeth, I’m hungry!”
“Yes, master Greg, your food will be ready soon,” she would reply, sweat dripping from her brow as the heat from the oven battered her frail yet supple body. Her bosom, bouncing in the tight French maid outfit Greg salvaged from a ruined adult video and clothing store.
“Good, I’m hungry, and afterwards we can work on more children. Fourteen isn’t nearly enough!” Greg soon broke from his daydream as he realized he had a sinister chuckle going on in the real world and people were beginning to stare.
“Fantasizing about something we should know about?” One of the guards, who revealed himself as Timothy earlier spoke from behind Greg.
“Er, nothing very important.” Greg, downplayed the severity of his daydreaming in front of Elizabeth’s father. Who with each passing moment seemed to become more and more protective of his voluptuous offspring.
It seemed like Rick was about to say something, when the silhouette of Ridgeton outlined the horizon. Greg could only think to himself what kind of person would live in such a terrible run down and decrepit town as this. However, it was decently fortified, seemed to have fertile soil, and a decent water tower above it.
“Welcome to Ridgeton,” the third guard, who still remained unnamed spoke from Greg’s left, “Our little piece of life.”
“Your little piece of crap” Greg muttered as quietly as possible. If he was to make Elizabeth his woman, he would have to convince her to run away and elope with him. Then he could put the reins on and bend her to his will. Or at least that was the plan.
“It’s not exactly the Hilton, but it’s safe, and self sufficient.” Rick shouted back.
As they slowly closed the gap, Greg began to notice people. Things came into clearer detail, and yes, the town really was as shoddy as it seemed from a distance. Nothing like patchwork buildings that would collapse in a gentle breeze to call home. Did these people even have any dignity or pride? It’s not like finding decent building materials was difficult.
At least not for Greg, it wasn’t. But Greg had a survivalists instinct, as he recalled an event from his past, involving certain greedy super mutants bent on collecting a “passage” fee from him. He paid it with active C4 explosives. Of course, he held the trigger on himself, and detonated it from a safe distance, ensuring he never pay a passing fee again.
While most people had a shoot on site instinct when it came to super mutants, and ghouls, Greg had a more passive approach where he could take advantage of them. For instance, he once came upon other scavengers in his turf, and sent some hungry ghouls to a picnic. The ghouls got lunch, Greg got their belongings. All is fair in love and war right?
As Greg became aware of his surroundings again, he soon realized they were already at the gates of Ridgeton, and gaining entry. Nobody even questioned Greg because he was with Rick. Tim and the other guard were greeted by their supposed wives, as another woman began weeping uncontrollably. Obviously now a widow.
“Well, welcome to Ridgeton. Safest town for over a hundred miles, probably. I wouldn’t venture that far myself, but you’re more than willing to.” Rick talked, and obviously had his daughter in his mind, hoping Greg might not find this town to his liking.
“Well, it’s certainly worth staying a while. I’m sure you’re going to be busy, so maybe your daughter could show me around?” Greg seemed pleased with his idea, and Rick seemed to be displeased.
“Well, I’ll have to admit, I will be busy with a widow and paperwork.” Rick spoke with great distaste, and begrudgingly gave his approval, “Elizabeth will show you around, and that’s it. She has chores to do later, and her wares to put up in her shop.”
“Yes Father, I will show Greg around town before I get back to my duties,” she smiled, and gave Greg a wink. Greg knew he had this one in the bag. Around town, around her clothing, and into her bed.
Oh, the terrible things Greg wanted to do at this very moment. How easy would it be, to just shoot the three strongest men in the town, and take away this daunting young girl? Probably not that easy as he noticed more men, most armed, approaching the gates.
How would he carry out his plans to seduce his dearest Elizabeth, and take her away from this place? Well, as Elizabeth guided him through the down, he would contemplate and formulate a plan worthy of his ingenious.
“This here is the town general store, and the only store. I built it myself, it's my life's work and accomplishments.” Elizabeth grinned at her excuse for a life.
Greg fought back desires to point out how absolutely pathetic this building looked. Did she design it with radioactive crayons? “You do know, you spelled 'General' incorrectly right?”
“G-e-n-o-r-i-l?” She seemed confused, as she pronounced the word in her head and spelled it allowed. She really needs a book or two, which Greg had plenty stashed.
“Well, I suppose it's close enough, it's not like anybody in this town can probably read anyway.” Greg snarled.
“Don't talk about them like that, they're hard working people, trying to sustain a life!” Elizabeth snapped back with a tone of anger in her voice.
“This is living? It seems more like barely surviving. A bit of education could take this town a long way.” Greg was getting annoyed with her, and was feeling the desire to strike her in the face. “Of course, I'm not insinuating this way of life isn't worthwhile.”
Elizabeth frowned, she seemed to think her town was one of the greatest. “What are you talking about?”
“It'd be really hard to explain it in words, it'd be better if I showed you.” Greg paused and thought for a moment, “I know, I'll show you. You should leave with me and I'll show you the world!”
Elizabeth laughed a seemingly innocent but delightful laugh that stirred in Greg's loins, “As if my father would ever let me leave?”
This annoyed Greg, could he imply the concept of running away without her father's permission any more thoroughly? “You father wont know you're gone until it's too late, and he wont be able to track me.”
“Are, you serious?” She blushed, he cheeks picking up a heavy hue of red, almost like a glow that could melt the coldest of hearts. “I’ll, definitely have to think about it.”
“Well that’s certainly understandable, you’d be uprooting and leaving your entire life behind. Take a few days. In the meantime, I’ll help the people of this town abandon any suspicion of me.” He tingled inside, with remorse. He had read in books that women were incredibly emotional, but this was rather absurd.
Her tour ended at the barber shop and clinic, “and this is our marvelous piece of life in the wastelands. Of course, you’ll be staying in the Sheriff’s office. Which is where my father works, he’s the sheriff.”
Greg had to fight the urge to say “Well no duh.” Instead, he bit his tongue and responded kindly, “Well, I surely thank you for your hospitality, Elizabeth. I’ll be sure to see you around. For now, I’m going to go look for work.”
Greg easily thought of a way to procure almost limitless supplies, by finding what this town really needed. Some electricity. How pathetic could these people be, to have not attempted to acquire electricity yet? Besides very.
So Greg approached a reasonable seeming man, that being one of the guards from earlier, “Tim.”
“Yeah, what can I do for you?” Tim scratched his beard as he wondered what Greg had in store for him.
“Well, this town seems to be all out of electricity, and I’d like to fix that for you. I was wondering if we could round up some people for a scavenging expedition into the nearest city. I’m almost positive we can procure the proper necessities to supply electricity to all or most of the town.” his words seemed to strike the common sense portion of Tim’s brain.
“That sounds like a brilliant plan, we haven’t had working lights except for flashlights.” Tim seemed amazed that Greg had the know-how to get this hooked up. “What exactly are we going to need for this little scavenging mission of yours?”
“Manpower. People willing to die to bring hope and prosperity to their town.” he paused, to think a moment before continuing “and possibly a vehicle that runs, if you have one.”
“Well, you’ve got my support, and I’m sure I can round up some others. Imagine the stuff we could do with the power of electricity. As for a vehicle, we don’t have anything of that nature. We do have plenty of Brahmin though.” Tim whistled to a friend, who came over right away. “Scott, we need some people for a mission into the city.”
“A mission? Into the city! Are you out of your mind?” Scott recoiled, frightened and astonished by what Tim just said. “There are mutants, and ghouls, and raiders, and they all wouldn’t hesitate to kill us.”
“Relax, we have with us, and experienced scavenger.” Tim seemed to be beaming with a sense of pride, for whatever reason, perhaps his courage. “And he promised he can get us electricity.”
“Electricity you say? Hrm, I really don’t want to go into the city, but if you support him Tim, I’ll support him. I’ll go round up some people, and you two go get supplies.” Scott finished talking as he turned and ran off towards a group of savage looking creatures who somehow called themselves men.
Greg, on the other hand was all man. He was suave, intelligent, cunning, and overall probably the most attractive man this side of the wasteland. His beard was lush and full, but trimmed by an electric razor to a short and manageable length.
Tim on the other hand came off as slightly malnourished, and didn’t seem to believe in personal hygiene. One should always try to not smell like ass, that was Greg’s personal belief anyway. It also made it difficult for your enemies to smell you, and so Greg would have to fix these men up first. He didn’t feel like getting caught immediately.
As the supplies were gathered, the men came around. God they looked like scrubby hobos from the 21st century. Yet these men had homes, did they not have any pride?
“Okay, I’m not going to lie to you men. You all smell ridiculously terrible. So terrible, unless we fix that offensive odor you wont be able to accompany me on this trip.” Greg motioned to a box in front of him, “In this box are some items I scavenged a while ago. We call it soap, tooth brushes, and deodorizers. They should all be fairly self explanatory. Go use them and meet up by the front gate for the briefing.”
“Hold on a second.” Rick grabbed Greg’s shoulder, a bad move as Greg used some jujitsu he learned from a book to pull Rick over his should using Ricks weight for all the momentum. Gravity did the rest as Rick landed on his back.
“I apologize Rick, self defense instinct that’s kept me alive up until now.” Greg seemed to have a smirk on his lips as he helped Rick to his feet.
“I just wanted to talk, “Rick seemed to be biting his tongue in a bit of anger now, as he brushed himself off, “you seem to have the men riled up, with promises of a better life if they face certain danger.”
“That would be correct, go on.” Greg was trying to understand Rick’s point here.
“The point I’m trying to make is, you better not be leading my men into the slaughter just to impress my daughter.” Rick seemed to have gotten a lot off of his chest.
“I admire your desire to protect both your daughter, and this town sir. However, I am fully aware of the risks in this mission. I am not doing this solely to impress your daughter, I am doing this to help save this town and make it a possible future for myself and my future family.” he seemed to be getting his point across. There was no need to bother persuading Rick though, as he already seemed to agree.
“Good, I just wanted to make sure you wouldn’t be doing anything foolish for a beautiful girl. Good luck out there, it’s dangerous.” he turned his back, and seemed to exhale, a lot of tension released. Rick definitely seemed like a good guy, but he definitely wasn’t the right man to lead a town to success. At least not without some education.
Greg had no intention of staying and holding this town’s hand though. They were all good natured people, but ignorant as hell and that annoyed Greg. He would do this one good deed, try and get Elizabeth into bed, and then flee into the night. Maybe.
The horizon seemed to be washed with hues of orange, red, pink, blue, and white with swirling clouds and a marvelous setting sun. It seemed when all was said and done, he had twelve men remaining. Those twelve men stared at Greg, as a strong gust of wind whipped sand up around Greg as his brahmin hide trench coat fluttered making Greg look like a real badass.
“We travel at night, in stealth, and silence. I think we’re all capable of that, right?” He called out over the heads of the admiring men. It was seeming like Greg had a bit of leaders instinct in him. “The city is approximately six hours away. We’ll reach the city before sunrise. When we reach the city, we will make a camp in a building in it’s outskirts. This will be known as Patrol Base Redemption.”
The men silently nodded as Greg gave them a moment to intake this information. “From there, I will begin scavenging immediately, with one other person. More than two people, and we’ll have too many.” He paused again, “I estimate we’ll be in the city for two to three days. I don’t know what will happen. We may be attacked, it may go off without a hitch. We just don’t know. So I need all of your courage. Your reputation as men is on the line. Let’s move out!”
Heavy worn boots picked up and stomped the ground, kicking up a bit of dust here and there but remained overall silent. The stars were bright this night, Greg probably wouldn’t need to use his night vision scope he acquired from some sort of militaristic military depot a few years back. He didn’t have many batteries left that would fit it anyway.
Traveling at night seemed to have other benefits, other than stealth. It was nice and cool and prevented the men from sweating. It was also preserving their water rations. It seemed like time was flying by too. Navigating in the dark was a pain in the ass.
Yet, it didn’t take long before they were on the perimeter of the city. A docile looking mess of collapsed buildings, twisted pillars of concrete. As expected, raiders.
They were greeted in a ill mannered fashion, and the leader of this pack approached with such terrible posture. His attire even worst, and his odor quite horrendous. “Now, now, now, which ones of yous guys is the leader here?”
Greg stepped forward, the other men absolutely petrified. “We’re just here to scavenge. I have four crates of whiskey, is that enough of a payment?”
“Four crates? What, do you want a building too or something? Shit, take use two buildings.” The raider seemed to pull out a red scarf with the Kahn symbol on it handing it to Greg. “You’re under our protection now, happy scavenging.”
The men seemed astonished, they had no idea they could just bribe raiders with alcohol. Greg on the other hand, remained nonchalant about the whole matter. “You know this city right? A bottle of vodka, and you tell me where we can find farm equipment?”
“Well, depends, you know any chem smuggling routes?” This raider was getting greedy now.
“Depends, do you know the patterns the mutants move about?” Greg pulled out his map, the raider pulled out his map. They marked each others maps. Greg handed the raider his bottle of vodka and they parted ways.
The men seemed far more relaxed now that they knew what Greg was capable of, and how he held his ground in the wastes. They came upon a structurally sound building of four stories, and claimed it as their patrol base. “Redemption, begins here. Tim, you’re coming with me. The rest of you will clear out that building, clean it up, and prep it for business.”
Greg walked off, and Tim scurried along behind him. Tim seemed like a reliable guy, and would definitely follow Greg’s orders. It was only a matter of time before Greg located the “Home Depot.” It definitely seemed to have been rummaged through many a times. Hopefully it would still have some equipment that he could build a generator out of.
Unfortunately, the biggest problem was, getting there. There seemed to be many ghouls, all of them were feral. There would be no talking his way through this one. So he would be forced to sneak their way around. The alleyways would keep them concealed, but it’d also keep threats concealed. It seemed like the buildings would be decent enough to move through, at least to get closer.
So, Greg picked a lock, the door swung in. As they entered, the door seemingly slammed itself shut behind them. As Greg’s eyes adjusted to the light, he heard a scuffle, and the sound of vertebrae snapping. That was definitely Tim’s body falling to the floor.
“Well, good morning, mutants.” Greg was in a really tight pinch. Hopefully these Mutants were reasonable. If they weren’t he wasn’t getting out of this without at least one broken bone.
“We talk good business, we hungry.” Yeah, definitely a mutant. “You tell us, location friends, grrrrr.”