All things Bright and Beautiful

God, getting up in the morning for work is such a goddamn chore… even in a computer game. But there’s nothing for it – if I want roll with the gangstas in the strip I need to gets up and gets some bank, boi! (EDIT: Okay – that felt wrong even as I typed it. I’m sorry. It won’t happen again.)

I leave bulk of my gear under Veronica’s trustworthy gaze and trudge off once again into the desert.

I'm thirsty. But not this thirsty.

I'm thirsty. But not this thirsty.

Just as I consider turning back in abject defeat I spot something moving out of the corner of my eye. It’s a gecko! Those wonderful mobile care-packages of meat and hide. The last time I saw a gecko was back around the waters of Goodsprings, and I’m kinda shocked to see one scampering about out in the desert.
I don’t recognise my horrible, horrible mistake until after Joe had already fired his first shot.
Those lizards aren’t green…

They're not green!

They're not green! THEY'RE NOT GREEEN!

At first I thought I’d missed – it didn’t look like the little beastie had been hurt at all. Regrettably I had hit the little blighter; the problem was just that my ammunition was apparently about as much use as a one-legged man at an arse kicking competition. It’s lucky that the geckos are only young, because even at half-size they are a match for my feeble flailing. If it hadn’t been for my high vantage point I might have been in a bad way.

BOOM!

BOOM!

The reward for my hunting is a pair of gecko stakes and some classy golden hide. Not the lost riches of an empire, but better than being trampled by a herd of cows.

They looked a lot bigger on the gecko.

It looked a lot bigger on the gecko.

The next morning I’m off again.
Just as I pass by the gate I’m attacked by a brigand whom is easily despatched with a few well-placed shots. I haven’t been writing about it, but this is a disturbingly regular occurrence in Freeside. If the Kings are around during attacks they’ll step up to enforce the peace, but since the attackers are inevitably dressed in rags carrying pipes as weapons.
I’ve been carting all their bodies to the same bin, and it’s starting to get crowded. If only rags and pipes were items in demand, I’d be rich as a king. Like… a real King. A King of a Kingdom, not one of the local criminal fraternity.

Some people collect stamps...

Some people collect stamps...

To shake things up I decide to drop into North Square, a fortified area that isn’t too far from Freeside.

Quite the depressing location really. It’s a run-down area that has almost nothing to recommend it. The only advantage it has over the waste is the walls to keep out the wildlife. There are no traders or any real points of interest. No point sticking about.

Errrm... where are all the people?

Errrm... where are all the people?

Potential store location... rejected.

Potential store location... rejected.

Trudging off into the ruins I manage to get turned about and spend half the day wandering in a massive circle. I end up on the other side of the Vegas strip, but have mostly only traversed previously covered ground. What a waste of daylight!
I should head back to the safety of the stall, but I don’t want to return to my business partner empty-handed. Instead I bunker down in an old camp ground to wait out the night.

Sure, this place looks safe.

Sure, this place looks safe.

I’d get no rest (since resting doesn’t help fend off exhaustion like sleeping does), but I can set out early and I’ll head back as soon as I can. As night falls Joe starts to feel hungry and thirsty. It won’t matter though – one night in the wilds won’t hurt, right? Right?
The next morning I am awaken early… by the buzzing of wings.

O. M. F. G.

Are you freaken kidding me?! For those who have only ever explored the Capital Wasteland or the West Coast – this is bad. Like, Deathclaw bad. Like “I-hope-you-had-fun-reading-my-wasteland-diary-because-it’s-come-to-an-abrupt-end-and-my-bones-now-line-the-desert-floor” bad.

Shit

Oh, S***.

There’s no way I can back-peddle fast enough, but I rife round after round into the flying monstrosity until the rifle runs out of ammo. After the rife is totally empty I’ve hardly scratched it.
I fall back to my trusty 10mm pistol.
In the spare moments between breaths I pump myself with every drug I have – a handful of stim-packs and a single med-x is all that I have on me for this trip and I use them all.

Going to need more then that...

Going to need more than that...

Joe can’t believe his luck when it falls to the ground. My leg is crippled, but my resultant health isn’t looking too bad due the drugs I’d been quaffing. Good thing, right? Not really.
The cazador’s sting is not the real risk – the giant wasp had injected me with poison and I’m helpless to do anything as I watch my health tick downwards. I’m all out of drugs, so as the gauge drops I’m sure that it’s going to be the end of Joe’s adventures.
In my pack I eat anything I think might help. The ongoing effects of the drugs and the food I eat helps counter-act the poison a little, but not enough.
Unbelievably, just when I think it’s all over, it stops. Once the poison burns itself out this is the state I’m in:

Stay away from the bright light, Joe!

Stay away from the bright light, Joe!

That is one HELL of a close call and I have no freaken clue how I survived it. If I’d had slightly less stimpacks or hadn’t had the med-x this would have been the last diary entry ever. Joe limps as fast as he can back to Freeside, avoiding any ruin or location that looks like it might pose any risk at all.
He deserves a rest.

"No, I don't want to talk about it."

"No, I don't want to talk about it."

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One Response to “All things Bright and Beautiful”

  1. Malcolm Rivera Says:

    And here I thought Joe would live a boring life! Awesome job!

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