"My life began when it ended." That's gonna be the first line in my memoires. Or maybe it should be "... when I was murdered"? Will be thinking about that, it's not correct either way, cause I'm obviously alive. It was close, though. If it wasn't for Mr. House, or to be more precise, his securitron Victor, who dug me out of the grave, I would not be breathing today. And I killed them both. Well, I'll have to live with that, telling myself that it was for the greater good and all. In retrospect, however, I am not so sure that it was, but at the time... it certainly felt that way. Maybe I was just tired of being pushed around. Anyway, I'm getting ahead of myself, I was trying to keep this ordered to some degree or another.
My name is Ranger, at least it is since I woke up in that clinic in Goodsprings, and Doc Mitchell asked me how he should call me. It is not the name given to me by my parents, of course, but it was the first thing that came to my mind, so I just said it. And kept it ever since, because I really feel that my life truly began on that day. You know, in my youth, I dreamt of joining the Desert Rangers - until they joined the NCR Army, because they were getting beaten badly by Caesar's Legion (although, being an ignorant little teen with her first crush on a neighbor's daughter, I did not realize that, and was very angry about them joining the NCR). Joining the military was not something I was interested in; I could already see myself becoming some grunt being ordered around by some higher-ranking idiot, while trying to rise through the ranks and finally, after some years, applying to the NCR Rangers, who probably would have rejected me anyways. So, after my parents decided to move into the republic, I stayed here, in the Mojave, running courier jobs for richer people, always afraid of taking risks.
But that changed on that day in Goodsprings. Probably the result of the bullet going through my brain. I am still capable of feeling fear - a Deathclaw Broodmother charging at me at full speed is a terrifying experience - but the fear does not paralyse me anymore, I just keep aiming at the head, shooting as fast as I can (running away wouldn't do me any good anyways, those things are a lot faster than any human). So I decided to go after Benny, the guy who very nearly succeeded in killing me. I swore to take him down, no matter the cost... and sometime later, I did. Wasn't that satisfying, though, cause on his own, he was just a little wimp, trying to run away from the evil woman who had risen from the grave to haunt him. Well, I'm getting ahead of myself again.
And, more importantly, I swore that from that day on, I would fight anyone who would use their power to abuse and hurt other people, and that I would do my best to protect the helpless and the innocent - basically, I would uphold the ideals of the Desert Rangers, become the "Last Ranger", so to speak. I never could have imagined how far that would take me.
|Ruelle - Where do we go from here|
After recovering, I found out that there was a man hiding in town, Ringo was his name. He was a survivor of an attack on a Crimson Caravan by a group called Powder Gangers - I had never heard of them. Unsurprisingly, because they were a group of criminals who had broken out of the NCR Correctional Facility while I was out. Anyway, for some reason they were still after him, and an attack on the town was imminent. In the old days, I would have just slipped out of town and let others deal with the problem, but my new self could not. I organised the townspeople into a militia, and helped them fend off the attack of the powder gangers, leaving none alive. I had never killed before, but, surprisingly, I did not regret it. My mind was focused on the task - keeping the town (and Ringo, though he was hurt badly in the fight) safe. And, all in all, it felt pretty good, being the hero of Goodsprings.
Forgot to mention Sunny Smiles, who helped me with my recovery and gave me a Varmint rifle (which I use - heavily modified - to this day!). Must admit, I had a little crush on her (hispanics are just too beautiful! Although, being hispanic myself, that sounds a little vain. I'm not ugly either though!), but, sadly, she showed no interest at all.
- Status today
- I'm staying in contact with the townspeople, some of my securitrons are keeping them safe. The town is prospering from the trade between the NCR and New Vegas. With the Powder Gangers and Caesar's Legion defeated, there aren't any serious threats around for them, though, so I basically let them do their thing. I have no desire to have them "join my nation", or whatever the NCR calls it when they annex a town.
- I'm still thankful to Doc Mitchell for saving my life. Whenever he is short on supplies, he just has to ask, and I send him what he needs.
- Ringo returned to the Crimson Caravan headquarters, and as far as I know, he is still working as a guard there. When we meet, we still play a few games of Caravan, but I try to keep the bet low, cause he almost always loses, and I don't like taking his hard earned money. He refuses to play without bet, though.
- Sunny Smiles still lives in Goodsprings. From what I heard, some guy moved in with her not long ago. I wish them the best.
Since the road north to New Vegas, where I expected to find Benny, was blocked by Cazadors, Deathclaws and whatnot (Victor came to my rescue once again, when I tried to travel north anyways, and was attacked and nearly killed by a cazador), I decided to follow the advice of Doc Mitchell and take the route south to Primm. Getting there was still dangerous, especially since I took a little detour to scout the NCR Correctional Facility and found Ringos ambushed caravan on the way, with some Powder Gangers still scavenging the remains. I killed them, with headshots, undetected, from a distance. An ambush, if you will. They deserved it. No regrets.
Arriving at Primm I ran into some NCR soldiers who told me that Primm was overrun by escaped convicts some days ago. Instead of helping, the soldiers were waiting for new orders, considering that Primm was not officially part of the NCR. Typical. So I went over the bridge (which the soldier dimwits had trapped with mines, if you can believe it!) into town, killed a few convicts who attacked me, and had a little chat with good old Johnson Nash and his wife Ruby Nash, who told me that the convicts had murdered the Sheriff (RIP McBain) and his (beautiful) wife (RIP) in their sleep, and captured Deputy Beagle, the brother of McBains wife. The townsfolk were bunkered up in the Vikki and Vance Casino, while the convicts had taken up residence in the Bison Steve Hotel. Obviously I offered to free the deputy (and punish the murderers in the process). Fighting the surprisingly well-armed convicts in close quarters taught me the benefits of a shotgun, and I learned to keep away from enemies wielding flame throwers. Nonetheless, after all the convicts were dead (a lot of them did not see it coming - I was really getting good at sneaking up on people), I freed Deputy Beagle - who turned out to be an idiot (I had never spoken with him before). The only useful information he could give me was that the guy I was after, Benny, had come through town and left for Nipton - so I was not the only one trying to avoid the Deathclaws.
I was not done here, though. Johnson asked me to find a new Sheriff who could protect the town. He had three solutions in mind: Ask the NCR to protect the town, reprogramm Primm Slim, the protectron of the casino, or seek out the convict Meyers in the NCR Correctional Facility. As crazy as it sounds, I decided to go with Meyers, cause he didnt seem to be a bad guy. As Johnson put it, Meyers had killed some criminals and got arrested for it by the NCR. Also, he did not seem to have taken part in the revolt, and stayed in the prison afterwards. Only problem was, I had to get inside the prison, and the powder gangers already knew my face (the body count in the hotel did not match up against what the townsfolk had told me about their numbers, so I had to assume that someone escaped). So I just dressed up with some of their gangers outfit and pretended to be one of them. Not one of my smartest moments, cause it used to be a male-only prison, and thus the gangers were all guys... Oh well, the first guard I encountered immediately attacked me and forced me to kill him. After that, I took off and adjusted my outfit, dressing up with the type of guard armor some of them used, and a helmet. This time I fooled them long enough to find Meyers, who agreed to become the Sheriff of Primm. Back in Primm I was scolded by Beagle, who had hoped to become Sheriff himself, and was instead immediately fired by Meyers, who appearently doesn't like to put up with idiots any more than I do. Ignored him, mostly. Johnson approved of my choice, though, and offered me a broken robot he had laying around. I did not have the parts to repair it at the time, so I promised to come back for it. Visiting the casino again, I was confronted by a group of NCR deserters, led by a dirty woman, who told me to get out of their territory. I sympathised with their decision to leave the NCR army, but I disapproved of their notion of what they should do now - they thought they could use their guns to take what they wanted from lesser armed people. I did not let them leave alive. Meyers approved, as did Johnson. The NCR probably did, too, but I did not ask them for their opinion. Instead, I offered them my help in retaking the prison, which they hesitantly agreed to (I just could not let that prison be a brooding ground for those murdering criminals!). After the assault on the prison was successful, I learned that some of the prisoners had already left it, led by Samuel Cooke, the leader of the revolt. Keeping that in mind for the future, I returned to Primm to get some rest before traveling to Nipton. The NCR soldiers left the town shortly after.
- Status today
- Johnson, Ruby and Meyers run the town, and they do it well. Primm too profits from the trade between the NCR and New Vegas, and I even stationed some Securitrons there to help Meyers out if he should need it.
- Former Deputy Beagle still lives in town, but I don't know what he's up to, cause he never talks to my Securitrons, and Meyers never mentions him either.
On the way to Nipton I got ambushed by some thugs, and suffered some serious injuries. Having patched myself up with makeshift bandages, I decided to take the road to the Mojave Outpost, which was not as far away as Nipton. Considering what was waiting for me at Nipton, it was a good choice.
After getting patched up properly at the outpost and admiring the huge statues built in remembrance of the Ranger Unification Treaty, I met Cass at the bar, though our first chat wasn't all too friendly. Never thought I'd meet her again at the time.
Outside, a sniper on the roof caught my eye: Ghost was her name, or at least, what everyone called her. I was fascinated by her - the first NCR ranger I had ever met. So when she asked me to scout Nipton for her (she was worried about the black smoke coming from that direction), I immediately accepted.
- Status today
- The outpost is still there, heavily fortified, and serves as a trading post between the NCR and New Vegas.
- Ghost might still be stationed there, but I wouldn't know, because I'm not all that welcome there, after taking the dam from the NCR and all. Sometimes I wonder what happened to her; I'd hire her in a heartbeat, if she'd ask.
On the way to Nipton I found a little hut with some supplies and a note written by Mayor Steyn, in which he admitted to plotting against the NCR and the Powder Gangers with the Legion. With a bad feeling about the whole thing I continued on.
Approaching the burning city, I met a crazy Powder Ganger, who just yelled at me that he won "the lottery" and ran off. I followed him a bit, not expecting anyone else in the city to be alive, but that guy was fast. Not as fast as the nightstalker he ran into, however... after killing the beast which had killed the man, I searched him, but only found a lottery ticket.
So returning to the town, I noticed some legionaries standing in front of the town hall, between some crucified, but still living powder gangers. Approaching them, one of them, who called himself Vulpes Inculta, told me everything about what they had done to the town: How they conspired with the mayor, only to betray him later, and how they had butchered the townsfolk along with the NCR soldiers and the powder gangers in this dumb lottery of theirs (appearantly, the tickets would decide how they would murder you, and a few tickets were the "big prices" and the ones drawing them would get to live), just because the Legion did not like their lifestyle. Vulpes seemed to be very proud of the whole thing, and told me in an arrogant tone to tell everyone of what had happened today, and how mighty the Legion is. While he and his four soldiers (and two wardogs) started to leave, I thought about the whole thing and decided to not stand aside this time either.
So I pulled out the .44 Magnum (my most powerful gun at the time), aimed at their heads and started shooting. The following fight was one of the most difficult of my life. Although they only used melee weapons and I killed the dogs, Vulpes and another soldier before they could get near me (running away while shooting to keep my distance, and using the ruins of the town to my advantage), the remaining three soldiers wounded me heavily before I could kill the last one. While tending to my wounds, I was not feeling victorious, cause I knew I just had declared myself an enemy of the most powerful man in the Mojave: Caesar. I calmed myself by thinking that probably nobody had noticed this fight, and even if, the "great" Caesar would not be paying attention to me. I was wrong. A scout must have had watched it, and, considering Vulpes was an important part of his plans, Caesar did care.
After a little rest I began searching the town for survivors. The crucified gangers were beyond my skill to save them, so I mercy killed them instead of letting them suffer. The town hall was infested by wardogs left behind by the Legion, as well as traps and some corpses of townspeople who had tried to fight back. In a nearby building I found some dead NCR soldiers, obviously murdered. Exploring the town I also found two dead Legion soldiers, one who had tried to enter a heavily trapped building (some paranoid guy had obviously lived there), and one who was shot by a laser rifle - the wielder of which lay dead a few steps away. Finally, in the general store, I found a powder ganger named Boxcars, who had his legs broken by the Legion. Reluctantly (he knew that I was "the woman" who had led the assault on the prison) he asked me to free two other gangers, who were held captive in a Legion camp not far from here. As bad as the gangers were, the Legion was worse - so I agreed. Surprisingly, the Legionaries there largely ignored me - an armed woman, approaching them while not looking too friendly... they must've been very arrogant at the time. Still, there were three of them, and the memory of my fight with Legionaries at Nipton was still fresh. While I was pondering my options near the camp, three NCR soldiers came out of nowhere and started attacking the camp. I promptly joined them and started shooting at the Legionaries. A few seconds later, they were all dead. The soldiers thanked me and moved on, ignoring the two prisoners. I hesitated a moment before setting them free, cause unlike Boxcars they could walk and thus attack other people. But since I simply could not execute people I had no evidence against, and I certainly could not just leave them to their fate, I cut them loose and told them about Boxcars. They left for Nipton, while I left for the Mojave outpost, telling Ghost of what had happened to the town. She was impressed that I had decided to fight the Legionaries instead of just scouting the town, which she had asked me to do, and wished me good luck on my travels.
- Status today
- The town is still in ruins, used as hideout by Boxcars and his two friends. I decided to leave them alone, as long as they dont start harrassing other people. Having a reputation as a "ghost town" now, Nipton surely won't attract too much interest from settlers.
Ranger Station Charlie
Next stop on the road to New Vegas was Novac, although on the way to that town I was double lucky (if I think about it, I've been always very lucky; I wonder why that is?): I noticed four heavily armed Legionaries in the distance, following me, starting to run when they saw me. Starting to run myself, I came across a NCR outpost - which turned out to be a ranger station when I cried for help and the bullets came flying towards the Legionaries pursuing me. It was a hard fight, though, cause the Legionaries had guns this time, too. While fighting, the leader shouted that Caesar wanted me dead - so I really had made a powerful enemy with my actions in Nipton. I barely survived and was patched up by the rangers, who told me that this had been an elite squad of the Legion, and asked me what I had done to attract that much attention. When I told them about Vulpes, they were shocked and explained that if I told the truth, I had killed the leader of the Frumentarii, the Legion's infiltrators, in the Mojave. That certainly explained why the Legion started sending this kind of firepower against me. Much more than I could handle on my own. After a few days in which I got to know a ranger named Stella (who seemed very nice for a ranger, contrary to her commanding officer Stepinac), I left the station towards Nipton.
Following a request by Ranger Andy in Novac a few days later (I will come to that), I returned to the station only to find it in ruins, the rangers killed of by the Legion, who left a few traps and a mocking holotape in which they claimed to have taken Stella prisoner.
Some time after that the Legion moved in and used the station as outpost for their purposes - but I would not stand for that.
- Status today
- After I personally assaulted the Legionaries who had taken up residence in the station, I stationed a few Securitrons there, who now protect the route to Novac.
- Stella offered to work for me after I rescued her from The Fort - and I accepted. She now trains the "Mojave Rangers", which I hope will soon protect the borders of the Mojave better than the Securitrons can.
Finally arriving at Novac, I was greeted by Dusty McBride and his wife Alice McBride, which I have known for a long time now. So when they asked me to help them defend their Brahmin against someone shooting at them with a big gun every night, I immediately aggreed.
Because it was not night yet, I proceeded to the hotel run by Jeannie May Crawford, who told me what had happened since my last stay (after I rented a room, of course): Apart from the brahmin problem and the usual craziness from No-bark Noonan there were four interesting new inhabitants in town: Daisy Whitman, an old lady, Bruce Isaac, a singer, and Manny Vargas and Craig Boone, two ex-NCR soldiers from the 1st Reconnaissance Battalion, who used to be friends, but now barely talked at all. Also, Ranger Andy was still in town, and Cliff Briscoe was still running his shop in the big dino building. Also, I met Victor outside of the hotel. He claimed to be traveling to Vegas, and that meeting me was a complete coincidence. I was skeptical, but said nothing.
Speaking with the new guys I agreed to do two tasks: Manny Vargas asked me to investigate some ghouls who appearently had taken up residence in the REPCONN test site and prevented the townsfolk from scavenging there (he would then tell me more about Benny, he promised), and Craig Boone asked me to find the one responsible for the kidnapping of his wife (which had been sold to the Legion, he was strangly sure of that; I agreed, cause I have always had a thing for sad love stories). Additionally, Andy asked me to check up on Ranger Station Charlie, cause they went radio silent a few days ago. I assured him that I had been there just a few days ago, but since he was very concerned, I promised to go there again.
Asking around town for Craigs wife I learned that she appearently had been difficult to deal with, basically nobody liked her, except Craig. Talking with No-bark, strangely enough, gave me the hint I needed: At night I broke into the hotel reception building and lockpicked Crawfords safe. I found a contract that proved that Crawford was responsible for the kidnapping - worse even, she had made money off of selling that poor woman into slavery. It took a moment to process, but then I was sure that this woman, who I had known half my life, had to die. Telling Boone, who was on night shift up in the dino, about it led to him asking me to lure her in front of the dino, so he could shoot her without anyone else noticing. I agreed, woke her up and led her to the place where she was killed by a bullet she never saw coming. In that moment, seeing her bleeding on the ground, I felt oddly cold - the thought of what probably happened to the wife of Boone while she was a slave kept me from feeling sorry for Crawford.
I then went up into the tower again and spoke with Boone about the whole thing. He gave me his second 1st Recon beret (which I proudly wear to this day) and told me that he would now leave this town, nothing was keeping him here. I suggested that he could keep me company, and, after a little thinking about it, he agreed.
With my new companion in tow I went to the farm and found an invisible, insane Nightkin talking to himself about needing to shut up the brahmin. Since he refused to talk to me und started walking up to the brahmin pen, I had no choice but to kill him. Boone helped, of course, with his deadly accuracy.
After a good night's rest we headed back to Ranger Station Charlie and found it devastated. It was not explicitly said in the tape the Legionaire's Commander left at the station, but I strongly suspect that the fact that the rangers helped me with killing off that elite squad a few days earlier might have prompted the Legion to attack that station. Back in Nipton Ranger Andy thanked me and promised to take the bad news to the NCR army.
Boone and me then took the road up the hills to that REPCONN test site and were attacked by some feral ghouls along the way. More puzzeling, however, was the scene we found at the entrance to the facility: There had obviously been a fight between ghouls armed with energy weapons and dressed in some kind of robes, and a lot of Nightkin armed with rebar clubs (the ghouls had, obviously, lost). I told Boone to keep watch on the outside, and went in, stealthy.
Inside I found a real mess: Ghouls who had barricaded themselves in the upper levels, Nightkin that were searching the basement for something, und inbetween some feral ghouls. After being contacted via intercom by one of the ghouls, I made my way up them and was surprised to find that a bold human named Chris Haversam was among them. Believe it or not, he believed himself to be a ghoul, cause he had lost his hair way too early, and he was helping them on their "great journey", at least that was what the leader of the ghouls, Jason Bright, told me. He also asked me to get rid of the Nightkin in the basement, so that the ghouls could continue this "great journey". Curious about the whole thing, I decided to help, and entered the basement, where I met the leader of the Nightkin, Davison, who was obviously crazy, cause he was talking to a brahmin skull as if it was giving him orders. Nonetheless, having done enough killing the last few days, I was willing to find a peacefull solution, so I accepted his deal: I get rid of a ghoul barricaded in a nearby room, and the Nightkin leave (the only thing they were looking for was a shipment of Stealth Boys). This ghoul was named Harland, and had yet another task for me: He was not willing to leave without knowing what had happened to his "sexy friend" who was taken prisoner by the Nightkin. My patience was wearing thin, but as I was certainly not gunning down someone who worried about his friends (and who had killed two Nightkin already), I accepted again (remember, sad love stories...). Sneaking around the basement, I had to kill a particularly nasty Nightkin who was guarding the cells. I only found a dead female ghoul in there, and returning to Harland, I told him this. He mourned, but accepted to leave the basement, joining the other ghouls in the top floor. Looking around his room, I found that the shipment had been redirected before the war. After telling Davison this, I managed to convince him to leave this place without making any more trouble.
|Richard Wagner - The ride of the Valkyries|
Having dealt with the basement, I returned to Jason Bright, who led his "flock" to a place only reachable through the basement: A rocket launch site. And by that, I mean space-travelling rockets, believe it or not. Jason told me that they were preparing to search for a land for their own, a land for ghouls, so to speak. Somehow, he hoped to find a place like that out there (after visiting the REPCONN Headquarters, taking the tour there, and reading some pre-war books, I seriously doubt that they will find another habitable place in this solar system; but whatever, if it makes them happy, why not). Chris Haversam then told me that he was missing a few key components for fixing the rockets, and asked me to help. I hesitated for some time, but agreed with the condition of them giving me one of their fancy space suits.
The parts he needed were easy to get in Novac, or, more precisely, in the Gibson scrap yard. While travelling there with Boone, I thought about what Jason had told me about Chris: The ghouls had not told him that he could not come on the journey with them, cause the radiation would kill him. Jason had asked me not to tell him either, but that just did not feel right. So, after having a little chat with Old Lady Gibson (she was happy to see me, as always) and buying the parts, I decided on my way back (Boone decided to stay in Novac, telling me that he had to "settle something") that I was gonna tell him. It took a while to convince him that he was not a ghoul, and that everyone around him knew that, and that they were protecting him from the radiation in the rockets because of that. He nearly flipped, talked about killing them all, but I managed to calm him down, finish his work and bid them farewell - and so he did. After Jason held a little speach, thanking us both, we watched the rockets launch from the control tower (I corrected a little error in their flight path which would have resulted in at least one rocket crashing)... and it was surely a sight to behold. Afterwards, Chris traveled with me to Novac, talking about settling there.
After a good night's sleep, I talked with Manny about Benny - he told me that Benny (and the Great Khans who helped him - I only then remembered that indeed Benny had not been alone when he tried to kill me) was heading to Boulder city. Boone and me were already gearing up for traveling north, when I remembered the robot in Primm and went to visit Old Lady Gibson once again. She had the necessary parts, which I bought, and so I decided to travel back to Primm (I've always had a thing for robots... well, that sounds a little dirty, but it's not meant to be; don't believe me? Well, I don't care). Boone didn't say much (in fact, he did not talk much at all in our travels), but I could see that he was questioning my reasoning. He did seem to change his mind, though, when we arrived in Primm and I fixed that little robot, who turned out to be a hovering machine with the designation ED-E. Will talk about him later, too, for now I'll just mention that this little robot had a somewhat nasty laser weapon attached to him, which he used regularly (and to great effect) on my enemys. On the way back Boone mentioned that Manny had been with the Great Khans once, so it probably wasn't a coincidence that he knew where they were heading - he had probably spoken with his old comrades.
So, returning to Novac once again, Boone, ED-E and I finally travelled north, having a little chat with Old Lady Gibson on the way - which somehow triggered an audio log inside ED-E of an scientist named Whitley. ED-E claimed to be unable to give me any more information about him, so I let that slide.
I should also mention that I used that hotel room Crawford gave me to store some excess equipment and memorabilia for a while; cleared it out as soon as I reached the Lucky 38, though.
- Status today
- Novac was attacked by a small Legion force during the battle of Hover Dam. Although Manny and Andy fought bravely, and Chris' automatic defenses took the worst of the attack, sadly the McBrides were killed by a stray legionary. My securitrons arrived a little later, cleaning the surroundings of any Legion soldiers, and have been stationed there ever since. As with Goodsprings and Primm, I'm letting the people of Novac do their own thing - which mostly means scavanging the rocket test site.
- Old Lady Gibson is especially thankful for the securitrons, not only does it give her protection from raiders, but it also gives her the means to contact me whenever she wants. And she does that very, very often. I don't mind much, cause I always liked that old lady. (Plus, she regularly asks about her dog... will come to that later).
- Cliff Briscoe took over the hotel after the death of Jeannie May Crawford. Managing the hotel and the shop at the same time proved to be too much of a hassle for him, so he soon gave the shop to Chris Haversam.
- Ranger Andy took over the night shift after Boone left, and now feels much more useful than before.
- Manny Vargas had a fling with Ada Straus, a doctor staying in town, and suddenly found himself to be a father when Ada moved in with him.
- No-bark Noonan told a reporter of Radio New Vegas that he saw some rockets in the sky, belonging to "religious ghouls, looking for a land to call their own." Despite being correct, he was laughed at. He still lives in Novac.
- Never again heard from Jason Bright and his ghouls. Sometimes at night I look at the sky and wonder where they were going. A few nights ago I even saw a Big Ship flying in the sky, but it didn't look anything like the rockets the ghouls used. Worries me.
On the way north I was intrigued by the sight of HELIOS One. Approaching it, I ran into some NSC-soldiers, who told me that this was supposed to be a solar power plant, but it had to be repaired before being useful. Inside, I met their "chief technician" Fantastic, who was absolutely clueless about the whole thing, but somehow managed to convince the NCR to trust him to get the plant running (after I did what he should have been doing, everyone in the NCR even gave him credit for it; doesn't matter, HELIOS One is under my control now). So he clearly was an idiot, but his assistant Ignacio Rivas was not. Speaking to Ignacio, he revealed that he was a member of a group called Followers of the Apocalypse, who wanted to lead humanity towards a better future - a worthy goal, I think. Ignacio also told me, that HELIOS One could be used as a weapon, and that he was tasked by the Followers to keep watch here, to keep the NCR from finding this out. I promised to him that I'd keep that secret, and went into the main tower with Boone and ED-E. A few security systems were active, but quickly deactivated. Calibrating the tower, I made sure that it could not be used as a weapon, and that it would send it's energy to every community in the Mojave, instead of only sending it to Camp McCarran and the New Vegas Strip, which the NCR would have preferred. Ignacio thanked me for that, and told me where I could find more Followers, if I was interested in their philosophy. I was, at the time. Their pacifist ways did not sit right with me though, in the end.
- Status today
- The NCR abandoned HELIOS One shortly after the treaty of Hover Dam. They tried to sabotage it, but were fought off by the security systems I had activated after leaving the tower. A large force of my securitrons now guards it against anyone trying to enter it.
- The plant, combined with the Dam, assures that there will be no energy shortages for the foreseeable future in the Mojave.
- Fantastic left with the NCR troops; don't know what he does now... I really hope they didn't give him anything important to do, but I somehow have the feeling they did, considering that they really believed he activated HELIOS One.
- Ignacio returned to the Old Mormon Fort. Last I heard, he left for some important mission in the west.
188 Trading post
Crossing the El Dorado Dry Lake, I was attacked by yet another elite group of legionaries. This time, though, Boone and ED-E had my back. It was a hard fight, but we managed to stay victorious. I was later told by some traveling merchant, who had watched the fight from a distance, that she was not surprised at all seeing two 1st-Recon-soldiers and a flying robot being able to kill four legionaries; she did not know, of course, that despite wearing the same outfit as Boone at the time - combat armor, the beret and sunglasses (yes, I was impressed by him and dressed like him, so sue me!) - I did not earn that rank, and it was a lot closer than it looked. After the fight Boone dragged me to the 188 trading post north of the lake, where a travelling doctor who never told me his name patched me up. Recovering, I met Samuel Kerr and Michelle Kerr (father and daugther), the owners of this little trading post, who were decent people and showed me the way to boulder city. On the day I was getting ready to leave, I met Veronica Santangelo. I spoke with her briefly, she claimed to be looking for supplies for a small community, and asked me "by the way" what I thought of the Brotherhood of Steel. I do not remember exactly what I said, but it must've been something nice, cause she later told me that she liked my response to that question, and only because of that decided to travel with me. But that was later; on that day I left with Boone for Boulder city, but not before conducting some business with Alexander, a jerk of an arms dealer from the Gun Runners. I needed ammunition, though, and thus had no choice.
- Status today
- The trade post is still there, prospering. I've dispatched a couple of securitrons to watch over the Kerrs, now that the NCR is no longer protecting them. Last I heard, they're building housing for some new residents.
- Alexander is probably still there, too. Don't care, takes more than a few snarky comments to spark my wrath.
Arriving at Boulder City, I was shocked by the destruction that had been afflicted upon this town. Sure, I had heard about the rangers blowing it up in the First Battle of Hoover Dam, but I had never visited the site, and had always thought the story to be exaggerated. It was not, the town was in ruins. There was, however, a nice memorial in town, honoring the soldiers fallen in the battle. Also, I met Victor again. He still claimed to not be following me, but I did not believe it. The owner of the securitrons, Mr. House, was surely watching me, so I knew I had no other choice but to travel onwards to New Vegas.
But first, I was looking for Benny and the Great Khans who had worked for him.
Exploring the town, I met a NCR officer, Lieutenant Monroe, who tried to keep me from entering the ruins, because there were hostages held by a few Great Khans. Being a neutral party, I offered to help defuse the situation (I needed them alive, they were, after all, probably the ones I was looking for). Monroe was skeptical at first, but Boone intervened on my behalf and assured the officer that he (Boone) was absolutely certain I was up to the task (he probably wasn't, but I appreciated his support nonetheless). So Monroe finally let me go into the ruins (Boone stayed behind, telling me that a Great Khan would probably start shooting a NCR soldier at sight). Inside I found a few starving, dirty, injured Khans (their leader McMurphy had already died) being sieged by squad of combat ready, if somewhat young, NCR soldiers. The only reason the Khans were still alive were two young soldiers they somehow managed to capture. The new leader of the Khans, Jessup, instantly recognized my face, and was, as you probably can imagine, very surprised to see me alive (he was the one who dug my grave). We talked a bit about Benny, who had broken his contract with the Khans and abandoned them when they encountered the NCR (and probably left for New Vegas). Jessup still had his silver lighter though, and gladly handed it over to me when I told him that I intended to kill Benny. That topic resolved, I tried to convince him to release the hostages, because, after all, that was the only way these Khans were getting out of this mess alive (and, somehow, I wanted them alive - Jessup seemed like a decent person; also, I did not want those two young, frightened soldiers to die; and yes, one of them was a good-looking woman, stop looking like that). At first he was reluctant to do so (to say the least), but after I promised him to help him fight the NCR if they did not agree to let them go (mentioning that I had a combat robot backing me up probably helped - I did not mention Boone though, for obvious reasons), he agreed to the plan. The hostages hastily made their way to the squad, with me following them. Monroe thanked me, but did not intend to let the Khans go - "orders", he said. So I appealed to his honor as a soldier and managed to convince him to not shoot down those ragged survivors (me mentioning that their leader was already dead probably helped). He orderd his soldiers to stand down, and the Khans wearily left the ruins. It was a somewhat awkward situation, walking besides them past the NSR soldiers who glared at them.
The Khans relaxed somewhat after leaving the town. I accompanied them until we reached the 188 Trading post, and we talked quite a bit. They were not nearly as savage a group as the stories about them made them to be; they were no saints either, though, that was for sure. They mentioned the Red Rock Canyon, and invited me to visit them there some time. I agreed, though at that time I was not sure if I would actually willingly travel to a camp full of raiders up in the mountains.
- Status today
- Lieutenant Monroe fell in the Second Battle of Hoover Dam. I was kind of sad when I heard of this, he was a decent guy. But that's life, people die. Even more so in war. Which is why I am going to prevent another war in the Mojave.
- Jessup and the other Khans safely arrived in Red Rock Canyon; will talk about them there.
Shortly after leaving the trading post the road to New Vegas turned north, and since the Khans intended on going west, we said goodbye. Not long after that Boone and I spottet some robots outside of REPCONN headquarters, which sparked my interest. I had always been afraid of going near that building, because it was said that the guard robots were still activly shooting anyone that tried to enter. But this time, using my newfound bravery, I decided to at least have a look. Approaching the robots outside of the building was kind of scary, but they did not turn hostile. After a short argument with Boone I decided to enter the building, where I not only found several dead raiders, but also a friendly robot offering me a tour of the museum. Boone was not happy at all about hearing me accepting that offer, but it was the right thing to do. I learned a lot about our solar system, knowledge that once must've been common, but now was mostly lost. After the tour Boone convinced me to not try to enter the restricted areas, so we left the building.
The next stop would be the Grub n' Gulp rest stop, or so I thought. But while we were on our way there, Boone spottet a group of legionaries approaching from the east - another kill team, appearently. I quickly decided to run back to REPCONN headquarters - maybe we could use the robots as cover? Boone approved the plan, and so we ran like our life depended on it (because, well, it probably did). Reaching the headquarters, we found good cover near one of the robots and started shooting at the approaching legionaries (they were a lot closer than before - the Legion really trains their soldiers well). They returned fire, and as I had hoped, the robots felt threatened (maybe one of them was hit by a stray bullet) and opened fire at the legionaries. With our combined firepower, the fight was pretty one-sided (thinking about it, never once did a legionary try to surrender - not that the robots had accepted a surrender anyway... but sometimes the last survivor of those kill groups would try to run away, so their moral was not unbreakable after all).
After the fight, Boone and I discussed our travel plans while searching the dead attackers for valuables. It was clear that the route east of New Vegas would not be as safe for us as I had thought it to be, so I thought about using the west route. Boone warned me that he had heard that the Fiends had gotten a lot stronger in recent weeks, and even threatened Camp McCarran. I didn't really believe that, because the Camp was, after the Dam, the second most important installation of the NCR in the region, so I decided to take that route anyways.
It turned out that Boone was right, though. We had several hard fights against those raiders, who somehow had gotten themselves a hold of energy weapons. Luckily, they were almost always drugged up and somewhat easily flankable. We did even rescue a NCR patrol who was getting overwhelmed by Fiends.
On our way to Camp McCarran we also stumbled over three camps of Fiends, each led by a particularly nasty leader: Violet (a woman feeding her dogs with people), Cook-Cook (a big guy with a flame-thrower), and Driver Nephi (an idiot attacking us with some kind of pre-war sports metal club). I only later found out that Cook-Cook was a brutal rapist, and regretted that his end had come so quickly - I was really getting good at shooting people (and yes, Boone and my robot helped).
Having killed a lot of fiends already, we finally arrived at Camp McCarran, where we were greeted by Major Dhatri. After having a little chat with him (he knew Boone and briefly talked about the Bitter Springs Massacre, but Boone did not respond to that), he told us about his problems with the fiends, and that we could make some caps if we killed some important ones for him. He then described the three leaders I already mentioned, to which I answered that we had already killed all of them. At first he did not believe me, but when Boone backed me up, he changed his mind (seems Boone is not known for lying) and payed us the bounty (which more than made up for the few injuries Boone and me had suffered during the fights).
Dhatri then also told us that the 1st Recon Alpha Team (Boones old squad) was at the moment stationed here to deal with the fiends, but would now probably be ordered to the front line. I decided to pay them a visit - Boone did not approve, but followed me anyways. They were quite a memorable bunch: Lieutenant Gorobets (a very competent commander), Sergeant Bitter-Root (who was adopted by Dhatri after the Bitter Springs Massacre), Corporal Sterling (an Ex-Ranger who had been captured and tortured by Legionaries), Corporal Betsy (a tough woman who immediately hit on my pretty hard - she was not my type, though), and 10 of Spades (a young soldier with a stutter).
Talking to all of them, and telling them about how Boone and I killed the Fiends' leaders, led to Betsy reacting pretty heavily to Cook-Cooks name. Gorobets then told me in private that Betsy and 10 of Spades were on a mission to kill Cook-Cook a few weeks ago, but failed. 10 of Spades was knocked out, and Cook-Cook then brutally raped Betsy, attempting to cook her alive after that - she only barely survived, because the rest of the team assaulted Cook-Cooks hideout and the Rapist had to flee. Ever since then, she was acting like everything was alright, but everyone could see that she was suffering. She denied getting treatment by a psychologist, though. Gorobets hoped, that I, being a woman who had appearently also earned the right to wear a 1st Recon beret (I said nothing to that), could maybe convince her to change her mind. So I told Boone to stay behind, and had a long, private chat with Betsy. At first, she just tried to get me to go to bed with her, but when I insisted on talking about her trauma, she finally broke down in tears and admitted that she could not cope with it on her own, but that she did not want the others to think that she would be a burden to her team. I then convinced her to accept treatment, and told her that I would make the arrangements. The obvious place for that was the New Vegas medical clinic (which I had never visited before, being a poor courier), so I made a note about going there as soon as possible.
After this, all I wanted to do was leave this place as fast as possible, but Boone wanted to have a look around - appearently a lot had changed since he had last been here. I hesitantly agreed.
The first thing I noticed after entering the big building was that it was very dark in there (I did not have my night-vision helmet yet). Taking the steps to the second floor we met Lieutenant Carrie Boyd, who told us that she was ordered to interrogate a captured centurion who surrendered during a fight with the NCR (which appearently had never happened before, they preferred to commit suicide - fanatic idiots that they are), but she was getting frustrated because nothing was working. Being curious about talking to one of those Legionaries for a change, I offered my help. Boyd really must've been desperate (or the beret once again left an impression), because she immediately accepted. She even gave me permission to beat the prisoner up - which, of course, I didn't intend on doing. Instead I managed to convince the guy (who thought himself to be much smarter than "those women" - meaning Boyd and me) that I was I spy send by Caesar to kill him for his treachery. It didn't take long, and he spilled the information Boyd wanted, telling me everything in a desperate attempt to convince me that he had not betrayed Caesar. "Now you did. Because I am not a spy after all." I answered and left the room. Boyd later told me that his morale was thoroughly broken after that. Which is good, those savages deserve nothing less.
Continueing to explore the building we met Private Morales, who was grieving the loss of her husband. She told me that he had been killed by fiends, who were letting his bode rot in the sun, as a lure for more NCR soldiers. I volunteered to retireve the body - I had killed a lot of fiends already, so I was not worried about killing some more. For the moment, though, we continued exploring Camp McCarren, because the body of her husband was somewhat far away - near the REPCONN headquarters.
Next we met Dr. Hildern and Dr. Williams, the Director of Operations of the Office of Science and Industry (OSI) and his assistant. Hildern was an arrogant little asshole, who appearently did not think that I could understand his advanced scientific theories (which were wrong, if you ask me - he was not an idiot like Fantastic, but he was wrong nonetheless), but he did give me a good paying job anyway: He wanted me to retrieve some data from Vault 22. I did get suspicious why a simple job like this would pay that good, and his assistant Williams confirmed my suspicions shortly after that: Appearently did Hildern not only already send a few dozen people on this exact mission, but there was also a NCR researcher missing, Keely. Confronting Hildern with this led to an even higher pay, but he did not apologize - instead he mused about firing Williams (that little shit - I mean Hildern, of course).
Anyways, our conversation was interrupted by ED-E, who played another audio log, this time talking about some important information stored inside the robot. Hildern was intrigued, but I flatly refused him access to ED-E and left. The robot would not tell me any more about this, though, either.
Continuing our exploration, Boone and I finally met the Camp's commander, Colonel James Hsu, who even took some time out of his schedule to talk to us. He was a nice, competent guy, and after thanking us for killing those fiends, he asked us if we would be interested in looking into some other problems this camp was having. Solving the NCR's problems did not really appeal to me, but since he asked nicely (and Boone immediately accepted), I did not say no.
The first thing he wanted our help with was, of course, the attacks by the Fiends. More specifically, he wanted us to kill their leader, Motor-Runner, who was based in Vault 3, a heavily fortified and guarded location. Appearently they also had already sent a NCR ranger named Anders after him, who had not reported back for weeks, so we should look for him too. Not feeling confident that a frontal assault would work, I accepted the task, but intended on doing this only if I found a way to sneak inside the vault.
The second thing was more easily solvable, at least for us: Hsu suspected the Legion to have a high-ranking spy in the camp, but his most trusted advisor Captain Ronald Curtis so far had been unable to track him down (you probably already suspect how this story ends...). Considering my recent run-ins with the Legion, I was much more eager to find this spy. After asking around, my best lead were some break-ins at the tower every night, so Boone and I decided to watch the entrance this night. Since we still had some time, we went back to Sergeant Daniel Contreras, who we met during our little investigation. Since he was in charge of the supplies of the Camp, we resupplied ourselves, and also sold some stuff we had taken from legionaries. While doing that, he offered us some shady deals. I remembered Boyd talking about her suspicion that something was off about the supply of weapons, so I played along. While Boone was then buying his stuff I snooped a little and found evidence on Contreras' computer, which I downloaded and gave to Boyd. Didn't take long until Contreras was in a holding cell. Thinking about it, why did I do this? As I have already said, my sympathies for the NCR aren't that great. Maybe the reason was that I had way more sympathies towards Boyd than towards Contreras?
Anyways, after a quick lunch in the concourse (and fixing the food processor for Corporal William Farber along the way), Boone and I had a look around the airfield to find a good hiding-place for tonight. After we found one (some stacked boxes not far from the tower), we waited silently until Midnight, when we saw someone sneaking into the tower. I told Boone and ED-E to wait outside and cover my back, while I sneaked into the tower. Hardly inside, I already heard Captain Ronald Curtis talking on the radio with some Legionary, assuring them that the bomb on the monorail had been planted. I immediately confronted him about it and shot him in the head with my shotgun when he reached for his weapon (it made a big mess). Very quickly I ran outside and towards the monorail, with Boone and ED-E following probably confused, but silently. Thinking about it, it really was a dumb idea to run towards the bomb, but like I already said - Goodsprings changed me. Anyways, I found the bomb and disarmed it (I wouldn't be writing this, obviously, if I hadn't). Reporting to Hsu, he was shocked that Curtis had been the spy, but relieved that I disarmed the bomb. As a reward, he gave me the key to a safehouse of the NCR Rangers in the hills south of New Vegas, and an emergency radio, which I could use if I ever was in trouble, and which would alert any ranger near me to come and help me (I never used that; probably should have, in some situations, but I never remembered I had it; and I highly doubt it still works now).
That being done, Boone and I had a good night's sleep at the Camp and left south the next day, in order to retrieve the dead husband's body. When we reached the place a few hours later, there were two soldiers wasting their time guarding it from afar, who warned us that the Fiends were on the rooftops of the buildings that surrended the body, and that they had heavily trapped the place. Boone and I did not say much, approached the buildings, found good cover and picked the Fiends off from a distance. When the last of them realized that they were under attack, it was already over. We then proceeded cautiously towards the bode, disarming any trap we found, and carried the dead soldier back to the waiting guards, who were surprised by how easy we had defeated the Fiends. We wished them a good day and left north.
- Status today
- The NCR left the Camp after the Treaty of Hover Dam. Out of spite they sabotaged the walls a little, but they left the monorail intact - probably guessing that destroying the train would prompt me to give my securitrons the order to kill them (which I would have done).
- The Camp is now owned by a private company, charging passengers for the use of the monorail, and offering luxurious rooms in the renovated terminal building. Since my securitrons provide the security, I, of course, take a small share of the profits.
- All the base's NCR staff left when they evacuated, and as far as I know, they are still alive.
- The 1st Recon Alpha Team left shortly after I left the Camp, and participated in the Second Battle for Hover Dam. Will talk about them there.
- The only one staying in New Vegas was Dr. Angela Williams, who now works at the dam for me (and she is doing a good job).
- Status today
- Craig Boone was the first to join the Mojave Rangers under the command of Stella.
|Enya - The Humming|
"Speak softly and carry a big stick." And that's exactly what I intend on doing.