The last normal day that anyone would ever have was five very, very long days ago. You are not entirely certain who fired the first intercontinental potshot, the US or the USSR, but you know more than most – that it was rogue Cosmonauts attacking the Tellus-Tessera base that started a cycle of tit-for-tat military reprisals that eventually went nuclear – all told, it took about 48 hours after the supply raid on Venus for things to boil over into a Nuclear World War back here on Earth.>Backroads to the East of Mooseleg Lake, Piscataquis County, Maine>Heading to Greenly's Farm, Kossuth Township>11:39 on 11/2/2020>No Wind, Slightly CloudyYou had just started unsolicitedly sharing one of your favorite stories about your Grandfather with Sucec, your group’s Chief Engineer, who is currently moonlighting as a driver-mechanic for your expedition, when you were suddenly and rudely interrupted by a gunshot. By several gunshots, actually. You can tell, quite easily, that these shots are coming from your left flank, and from what you know about the layout of the land here, you would bet anything that the attackers have concealed themselves inside the treeline, no doubt taking as strong of a position that they can, overlooking the road and your convoy. “All of you, get in the vehicles right now, but don’t leave until everyone checks in, got it?” The response that you do get is uneven and harried. It is what you should really, half of your men a professionals, and half of your men are basically civilians, though with everything that has happened, you have to wonder if ‘civilian’ even means anything anymore. Further down the road, you can see your mother drive off prematurely, in defiance of your explicit instruction. For a moment, you contemplate telling her to wait, but with the 400 gallon diesel trailer that she is towing, perhaps it is best that she gets a head start. The whole reason you did not want anyone to leave immediately is that you are worried about leaving one of your men stranded without cover, exposed in the middle of the road. Of course, no one would by trying to take cover by a fuel tank during a gunfight, so – “Mantle, if the two of us are back here working on this mook, then whose going to drive this piece of shit?” Big Nate. Big Nate with a very good point. “Anderson! You get behind the wheel – when I give the go ahead, drive us out of rifle range, you got it?”
>>4880169He says something in response, but you are already back on the walkie-talkie, trying to coordinate with the rest of the vehicles, make sure that everyone got in alright. After a moment or two, he stops – then all you can hear up front in the cab is movement, hopefully him getting behind the wheel. It takes another ten or so seconds before you have confirmation that everyone is on a vehicle. Once you have that, you immediately order everyone to get the Hell out of here, and follow your mother and head back towards the lake. As your convoy scampers away, Keane, the Guard that you have manning your M85, asks an astute question.He says something in response, but you are already back on the walkie-talkie, trying to coordinate with the rest of the vehicles, make sure that everyone got in alright. After a moment or two, he stops – then all you can hear up front in the cab is movement, hopefully him getting behind the wheel. It takes another ten or so seconds before you have confirmation that everyone is on a vehicle. Once you have that, you immediately order everyone to get the Hell out of here, and follow your mother and head back towards the lake. As your convoy scampers away, Keane, the Guard that you have manning your M85, asks an astute question.“Why’d they stop firing?” Huh, he’s right … after those first three shots, there was not a single round fired for the fifteen, twenty seconds it took for you to get the confirmation that everyone was on a vehicle, nor was there a single round fired as the lot of you retreated down the road, presenting a pretty generous target to the gunmen in the timber. It is strange … really, really strange. Those people caught you completely off-guard, they had an opportunity to do serious damage, to your men or your vehicles … and they just give up? What’s going on? Please pick ONE of the following: >Whatever it is, it is their loss, not yours. Tell Keane to stop distracting your medics ... and you, for that matter. You have to plan the next step here after all.>You are not completely sure … but you have a hunch. (Write-In) >Previous Threads can be found here:>>http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive.html?tags=TrashQM%2C+Survival%2C+Apocalypse%2C+Retro+Futurism%2C+Cold+War[spoilers]Welcome back everyone, sorry for the lapse in communication. I posted in the general, but apparently, people had already moved over to the new one, and didn't see what I wrote. Basically, I got a summer job and my hours the first week were crazy. Should be better going forward, I hope. Also, as you can see, this vote is a bit different from the ones that I usually have. I wanted to try something new - incorporate player feedback in a different way.
>>4880169He says something in response, but you are already back on the walkie-talkie, trying to coordinate with the rest of the vehicles, make sure that everyone got in alright. After a moment or two, he stops – then all you can hear up front in the cab is movement, hopefully him getting behind the wheel. It takes another ten or so seconds before you have confirmation that everyone is on a vehicle. Once you have that, you immediately order everyone to get the Hell out of here, and follow your mother and head back towards the lake. As your convoy scampers away, Keane, the Guard that you have manning your M85, asks an astute question.He says something in response, but you are already back on the walkie-talkie, trying to coordinate with the rest of the vehicles, make sure that everyone got in alright. After a moment or two, he stops – then all you can hear up front in the cab is movement, hopefully him getting behind the wheel. It takes another ten or so seconds before you have confirmation that everyone is on a vehicle. Once you have that, you immediately order everyone to get the Hell out of here, and follow your mother and head back towards the lake. As your convoy scampers away, Keane, the Guard that you have manning your M85, asks an astute question.“Why’d they stop firing?”Huh, he’s right … after those first three shots, there was not a single round fired for the fifteen, twenty seconds it took for you to get the confirmation that everyone was on a vehicle, nor was there a single round fired as the lot of you retreated down the road, presenting a pretty generous target to the gunmen in the timber. It is strange … really, really strange. Those people caught you completely off-guard, they had an opportunity to do serious damage, to your men or your vehicles … and they just give up? What’s going on?Please pick ONE of the following:>Whatever it is, it is their loss, not yours. Tell Keane to stop distracting your medics ... and you, for that matter. You have to plan the next step here after all.>You are not completely sure … but you have a hunch. (Write-In) >Previous Threads can be found here:>>>http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive.html?tags=TrashQM%2C+Survival%2C+Apocalypse%2C+Retro+Futurism%2C+Cold+WarWelcome back everyone, sorry for the lapse in communication. I posted in the general, but apparently, people had already moved over to the new one, and didn't see what I wrote. Basically, I got a summer job and my hours the first week were crazy. Should be better going forward, I hope. Also, as you can see, this vote is a bit different from the ones that I usually have. I wanted to try something new - incorporate player feedback in a different way.
>>4880213I just caught up to this quest last night, we need to loot a sporting goods store and get a cup also this quest really reminds me of Lucifer's Hammer
>>4880213Buggery, I forgot to vote >Whatever it is, it is their loss, not yours. Tell Keane to stop distracting your medics ... and you, for that matter. You have to plan the next step here after all.
>>4880213>Whatever it is, it is their loss, not yours. Tell Keane to stop distracting your medics ... and you, for that matter. You have to plan the next step here after all.
>>4880213>>You are not completely sure … but you have a hunch. (Write-In)Maybe they want to talk? Have someone from the rear wave a white flag of sorts and attempt to diffuse the situation
>>4880169We have that trait from the moose that gives us a big bonus when we use a small calibre to take on big targets right? Could we be a god with a .22 machinegun?
>>4880213>You are not completely sure … but you have a hunch. (Write-In)That might want to surrender, but we should be very cautious.
>>4880391I think the bonus is something to do with shot placement, making even low cal guns useful. Don't think it means we'd be using a 10/22 better than the right arm of the free world though.
>>4880391Too bad Mantle's collarbone is borked. The less guns we fire till its healed better, the better it will heal.
Alright, votes closed. Mantle has a sinking suspicion that these people might want to talk (or surrender). So, with this, there is a secondary vote: should Mantle take the time to try to talk it out with these people, or not? It is currently 11:39 am. Greenly has enough fuel to last until 2:00pm. >Please choose ONE of the following:>Yes>No
>>4880886>>YesSo long as we keep it short and sweet.
>>4880886Sure, a ceasefire and notification of a...guest in our custody >yes>>4880803Sure, that does make sense, I'd love to pick up a .308 C1A1 (Winterized for his Volcaic-Nuclear Winter pleasure) instead of running around with a million rounds of .22 in some kind of mini gatling gun that was possibly made for civil war Ants>>4880857Yeah, that reminds me we should pick up and or make a bullet resistant vest to hopefully prevent or reduce the severity of this happening again to our little autistic handyman and his own little autistic handyman
>>4880886>No. Its time to run. Sticking around will just get our people killed.
>>4880950>>4881030>>4881198Still working on the post, should be up sometime tomorrow. Oh, and consider the vote closed, obviously.
>>4882045If its not too much trouble, could we have a more specific outlook on the equipment we (our Commune or whatever) has for rifles, it'd also be a good idea to employ the Kipling Picket (one man on the road being overlooked by a sniper, if the first man puts his hands above his head then the sniper shoots whoever the guard is talking about) also we should plant blackberries around our property line, they've got big thorns and act like living barbed wire
>>4882948Yeah, that is definitely something that I should do. I've been meaning to pull together a basic report of what the group has for you guys. As for the update, I'm still working on it, going back and forth on how I want this to play out. It's going to need a little more time - sorry about that.
>>4883926No worries boss, take your time>>4882948this guy is right though, previous attempts at inventory making have been way too detailed, wasting your time and effort for something no one is autistic enough to read. So very okay to take it rough (for example: "30 daily rations of food" rather than "5 cans of peaches, 40 pounds of rice...... ")
>>4884224>something no one is autistic enough to readY-you too
>>4884224*Autistically screeches in Collapsing*Whichever way you want to do it QM. :)
>>4883926Looking forward to it man. Take your time.
>>4883926Can't wait, I've been reading stuff about naturalistic ways to defend homes
Hey guys - just wanted to give an update on the update. Should be done for tomorrow, (hopefully) along with a basic report on the equipment that we have. I'm having a much harder time of it than I thought I would making time for writing, and on top of that, I've still been going back and forth on how I want this encounter to work out. But baring some new calamity, we should be able to get back on track tomorrow, and then resume the traditional daily update going forward. Thanks for being so patient.
>>4889281That's cool, I can't wait until the roads become impassable due to Ashfall and then get massively radioactive from the fallout
>>4889281crush it brah
You gave the order to move in to intercept this latest group of Outsiders, knowing that you did not know if they were with the Highwaymen that forced your first expedition to retreat. You had to make a split-second decision. Had you taken a less aggressive opening stance, you might have been able to communicate, to talk things out … but the risks and the stakes are high enough that you could not accept that gamble. And in that at least, you feel like you made the right call. You must keep the convoy safe, and you must keep the convoy on schedule – there is so much riding on your mission, riding on your shoulders here. Had you tried to amicably approach the Snowplow and the Minivan, and they turned out to be hostile, things could have gotten violent. That plow was more than enough to force any of your vehicles off the road. And you still do not know how many men were in the Minivan, and how well armed they were. No, with what you knew then, you definitely made the right choice … But with what you know now? It seems almost certain that you made the wrong choice. Even if the Minivan was carrying fighting men – or men capable of fighting – the damned thing bolted like a rabbit at the first opportunity, leaving the plow behind to fend for itself. And the plow … had the driver made the effort, he could have forced his way free, probably even after you had him boxed in with the buses. But instead, he panicked and … well, no, actually, he did not. If he panicked, he probably would have tried to force his way out to escape anyway. He just … sort of shut down. And that is what is sitting like a lead balloon in your stomach. You could, and probably would have written off the Minivan leaving and the passengers on the plow bailing and making a dash for the timber as some sort of contingency orders for the Highwaymen – things to do if they ran into a force on the road that they could not overwhelm. But the Highwaymen that you had fought against were some serious customers. They were perfectly willing to kill you on sight. These guys, on the other hand, they could not even run away properly, let alone try to fight or kill. And while there were the shots fired from the treeline, there were only three, and no one has mentioned any injuries. It seems more and more likely that those were warning shots – because if they were firing in anger, or trying to actually neutralize a threat, then you are sure that even with the precautions you were taking, they would have had at least one more opportunity to shoot at your men. And even if they did not, they could have shot at the vehicles themselves. But no – nothing more. From what you have seen of this group, you cannot even discount the idea that the shots could have conceivably been an accident. Perhaps one of them ND’d, and the other, thinking that they were supposed to be shooting started firing as well. You would not put such sloppiness past them.
>>4890940But you would put it past the hardened shooters that you encountered earlier. You cannot accept that this batch of Outsiders are Highwaymen. Which means that here, in this encounter at least, you were the Highwaymen. To be sure, you tried to talk to them … as you boxed them in, chased after them, and leveled military hardware at them. And even if you and yours did not want to kill them, as the Highwaymen you encountered earlier seemed to want to, had things gone differently, they might have. All of you were and still are on hair triggers – the ruined jaw of the Snowplow’s driver is a testament to that. In fact, all things considered, he could have lost his life as easily as he lost his jaw. And on top of all of that, you stole one of their vehicles and made off with one of their men. Oh Jesus Christ, what the Hell have you done here? You take a series of deep, deep breaths, as deep as your injuries allow and try to focus your thoughts … while you studiously ignore the sounds of Gunther and Forsythe murmuring, jostling and snipping as they continue their work on your captive Snowplow driver. It is just like you said earlier – or thought, rather – if you knew what you knew now, you never would have gone out guns blazing like that. But with what you knew, what you and your men tried to do was a reasoned and balanced response. As for the disfigurement of the Snowplow driver … while it was more than unfortunate (for him, as well as Gunther), and definitely undeserved, it was at the very least, justified. It does not make it any easier to stomach, of course, but you suppose that is a good sign in of itself. A man, an (almost certainly) innocent man has been grievously disfigured, probably doomed because of a call you made. You would not want this to get easier, to be easy. And you are acutely aware that these things can become easy. In drastic situations, things inevitably become a race to the bottom. And while you do not think that you would ever turn out like the Highwaymen you encountered earlier, you also did not think that you would be maiming and stealing from innocents today either. Of course, now that you think about it, you have already fallen quite a bit. It might have been easier to ignore, because you were stealing from abandoned businesses as opposed to your neighbors, but you have been stealing. It was morally questionable, to be sure. Of course, that is also how these things work. Things get rough, what was untenable yesterday becomes maybe, possibly tenable today, you start to feed yourself and anyone who will listen lines about how you would never, but, and the next thing you know …
>>4891035“We need to go back.” The soft noises Gunther and Forsythe are making as they tend to the driver abruptly stop. They are probably looking at you, but from your current position, with your neck in a brace, you cannot see. However, you can see Keane, the Guard you have on the M85 turn to look at you, and conveniently enough, he is the one who speaks up, as the two Paramedics, one overqualified and one underqualified return to their work. “Whadda mean, ‘go back’?” “Go back the way we came. Go back the way we were going, as we originally planned. I … I don’t think these guys are Highwaymen. In fact, I’m almost certain they aren’t. Those guys had much, much more fight in them then these guys did.” As Keane reflexively looks over his shoulder at the captive, you can hear his suit crinkle, even over the sounds of the engine. It is almost painfully obvious as to what he is thinking about. “I know. But … if these guys aren’t Highwaymen, then that means the roads here might be safer than we thought. And, if we were to go back, we might get an opportunity to try to set things right.” “What, you got a new jaw to give him?” “No, but if the two men who bailed from the back of the Snowplow are still out there in the woods, then we might be able to talk to them. Let them know that this was an accident.” “And that will make things alright?” “No, I doubt it will. But it is still the right thing to do here, ain’t it? And if this guy isn’t a Highwayman, then he should be returned to his group. Besides, we will have an easier time getting information from people who can actually talk to us. And we need any actionable intelligence that we can get out here. All of our attention has been around Mooseleg, to the point that just outside of our territory we’re practically flying blind. That’s untenable. So, we go back, and see if we can’t talk to them. And even if they don’t speak a syllable to us, then we still come out ahead, because we’re back on the planned route.” “I don’t know about – ”“You don’t need to know, Keane, this is my call here. I get your concerns, but if they wanted to shoot us, make a fight of it, then they had their chance to, and gave it up. You yourself said as much, not even a minute ago.”
>>4891102Having completely resolved yourself by talking things out with Keane, you relay your orders to the drivers. You do have to repeat yourself, more than once, and in the end, you have to pull ‘rank’ (such as it is) on them, but you get the convoy turned around quick enough. Within a minute, Anderson, the Guard you have replacing Gunther behind the wheel of your Farm Truck, announces that he can see where the shoulder of the road was torn up by the buses pinning the Snowplow. On your order, everyone slows down and comes to a stop. To your relief, there is no welcoming gunfire … but by the same token, there is nothing to indicate that the two men from the back of the Snowplow are still there. >Please choose ONE of the following: >You should be the one to try to speak with them, even if shouting might be a bit rough on you. >Keane has a decent voice, and he is right here. Let him be the one to do the shouting. >This might actually be a good job for your mother. You could tell her what to say over the walkie-talkie. >Please choose ONE of the following:>Have everyone remain hunkered down. It is unlikely that these guys are going to start shooting you, after giving up such a great opportunity, but it pays be safe. Unfortunately, you will have no situational awareness. >Have someone poke their head out of cover. There is a non-negligible risk, but you will have a chance to see what is going on out there. >Have everyone (besides yourself, the Paramedic and the “““Paramedic”””) poke their heads out of cover. There is a non-negligible risk to those that do, but you will have situational awareness of the scene. >Write-ins on what to say here will be accepted, so long as they are reasonably in character.Still working on the equipment report. Everyone should expect that with tomorrow's post. Glad to be back in the swing of things.
>>4891109>>Keane has a decent voice, and he is right here. Let him be the one to do the shouting.>>Have everyone remain hunkered down. It is unlikely that these guys are going to start shooting you, after giving up such a great opportunity, but it pays be safe. Unfortunately, you will have no situational awareness.I actually thought we hadn't moved on yet, don't know that i would have picked to turn around the convoy to go back and try to talk to them.
>>4891109>>This might actually be a good job for your mother. You could tell her what to say over the walkie-talkie.>Have someone poke their head out of cover. There is a non-negligible risk, but you will have a chance to see what is going on out there.
>>4891109>This might actually be a good job for your mother. You could tell her what to say over the walkie-talkie.If we have a friendly elderly women with us that will reassure them that we are civilized people>Have someone poke their head out of cover. There is a non-negligible risk, but you will have a chance to see what is going on out there.Do it after the speech and we see what their reaction is.
>>4891109>You should be the one to try to speak with them, even if shouting might be a bit rough on you.>Have someone poke their head out of cover. There is a non-negligible risk, but you will have a chance to see what is going on out there.We do NOT put our mom out there when there's a chance she might get shot
>>4891328Ditto, a raider group probably wouldn't have an Old woman but they definitely wouldn't be carting around an injured man
>>4891607For the record, your mom isn't that old. She's in her early forties.Who speaks?>>4891194 Keane 1>>4891254 Keane 1 Mother 1>>4891322 Keane 1 Mother 2>>4891328 Keane 1 Mother 2 (you) 1>>4891443 Keane 1 Mother 3 (you) 1Who peeks?>>4891194 Nobody 1>>4891254 Nobody 1 Somebody 1>>4891322 Nobody 1 Somebody 2>>4891328 Nobody 1 Somebody 3>>4891443 Nobody 1 Somebody 4Alright, I'll get to writing this up.
>>4891443Actually, I want to change my vote tov>Tell keane he's right and we need to keep retreating.
>>4891844She'll be way over the Median within a year and speaking of old dudes, we need to speak to our crazy friend he's anti Social but obviously prepared not to mention that we need to lock down the valley (?) we're in and he has the expertise to help do that
>>4891846I'm fading fast and I don't have the write-up or the report satisfactorily done yet. So much for back to regular posting. >>4891846Anon, that vote was closed almost a week ago, I can't change that now.
>>4892570>So much for back to regular posting.No worries on my end. Been busy lately. Cokeanon reporting in. Name doesn't really fit now, I've been sobering up, I quit smoking 13 days ago and don't really screw with anything besides alcohol anymore. Hope that summer job is working out for you as well man. Writer's block is rough but I know you can get the ball rolling. Good luck dude. I might not be around to vote often, but this absolutely is my favorite quest. Call me crazy, but I've legitimately been dumpster diving lately due to this quest getting me into the idea of salvaging. Day drinking, got half a case of beer and a can cozy that says Alaskan King Crab on the side. I just found the thing on the ground somewhere, lol. >>4891880>we need to speak to our crazy friend Definitely. We just need to find out how to reach him without getting shot first. If we look verrry non threatening as someone transports our stretcher in, visibly unarmed we probably will be alright. Probably.>we need to lock down the valley (?) we're in and he has the expertise to help do thatAround the homestead? I think it's fairly open really, there's just that ravine near the front of the property with the bridge over it, unless I misunderstood. Just forested around the rest of it. There's the logging access road in the back as well, iirc. Tinn could provide some good insight, we could do something similar to his schizophrenic entrance with the blackberries on either side of a zig/zaging driveway with the pointed brick teeth on the sides of the thing. And clear out foliage in the surrounding woods for less cover?
>>4893467No, I thought the town we're in was in some kind of valley
>>4893614It's at a lake. we're Lakers.
>>4893619One doesn't cancel out the other
>>4893729lookin to entirely block off whatever valley we may be in is pretty slick but that's the long game man, we need to look after us an ours in the short. we need to take over more immediate surroundings so there aren't cocksucking raiders that shoot us up 30 minutes within our main population center before we look into blocking off routes into whatever valley we may be in. we should absolutely try to gatekeep our territory a bit more however
>>4893742Yeah, if we can seal off our Valley a bit more then we should be able to starve out any Raiders in the area, also since we told everyone else in our town to move on then every other community around us should be super vulnerable to collapse from the increased population so hopefully after that happens we'll have a dead zone around us. Raiders closer than a day's walk are too close for comfort. Also, just as a general note, we really need to make sure we don't end up on the wrong side of Serfdom which this town seems to be going towards.
>>4893795>Yeah, if we can seal off our Valley a bit more then we should be able to starve out any Raiders in the areaThat won't require any help from us, once things get bad we'll be lucky not to starve ourselves. We're going to need to do a lot of work with hydroponics, greenhouses, and all that. Hopefully we can work fish or these crabs into a hydroponics ecosystem. I know it's done with tilapia But I'm sure crabs would be helpful too.>Also, just as a general note, we really need to make sure we don't end up on the wrong side of Serfdom which this town seems to be going towards.I for one look forwards to being among the new landed aristocracy.
>>4893802Exactly, we need a medal or something for everything we've done for the Lake community including taking a bullet to the gut (and nearly losing a Ball) although maybe a proto Neo-Castle could work well enough.
>>4893802>I know it's done with tilapia But I'm sure crabs would be helpful too.On the subject of food production, we really need to keep this stuff on the down low. If everybody knows Mantle has food production beyond just owning livestock such as cattle and ducks, we will be hassled. >>4893802>>I for one look forwards to being among the new landed aristocracy.Fine wine financed via crabs>>4893972>Neo-CastleI like the way you think
>>4894092We're supposed to be a big booky nerd right? We probably have books on Castles, their construction, and maybe even armour
>>4894185>We probably have books on Castles, their construction, and maybe even armourArmor would be pretty neat but with the main threat being firefights, I doubt anything that could be reasonably blacksmithed would be effective against gunshots. Fleckkers had the right idea with that improvised bullet-proof vest. If we can salvage some steel plates and had the time to make a decent design, we could roll with making some of those.
>>4895143I absolutely love the design of Vietnam era flak vests and since we're in a Retro Future hopefully the Army is still using them Also if we capture any Bandits I vote for hanging them from the streetlights going into town with "Bandit" signs around their necks
>>4895173>Also if we capture any Bandits I vote for hanging them from the streetlights going into town with "Bandit" signs around their necksSeems VERY extreme, we're not even 6 days into the collapse just yet. Might make some of our people discontent, but would definitely scare off at least some trouble from our territory. Depending on how civil the national guard is currently, that might piss away any slim chance for diplomacy we could have with them. Maybe not common bandits, as there seems to already been a misunderstanding with the snowplow encounter, but if we can get our hands on some proven firebugs, I'll fully support a public execution/lynching. I'm personally partial to Vietnam era helmets. Classic.
>>4895178If anything, I'd be surprised if the Natty G isn't shooting civilians en mass for Rioting or some kind of insanely old ruling from 1722 to justify executions or banishment. Bandits are Murderers, killing them is a net positive and it's only getting more positive as food runs out and Cannibalism becomes more attractive.
>>4895143against low calibre fire, you don't need too much steel, and it might just save lives in a pinch
Where does he see himself after the revolution? Making lattes? Being a uniform designer? Board member? He'll be in the labor camps if he survives, alongside the rest of the tribe.
>>4892570Hey Trash, in the future if you're not too busy, can we get a rundown of what's in the town? If we want to be able to keep shooting guns after 6 months we'll need a chemistry station (a serious one too) in order to make Smokeless Powder
>>4901384I can definitely do that, as well as the summary of what the group already has. Seems to me that they kind of compliment each other. It has been difficult, finding the time to sit down and write this week, but I will have the post up tonight, barring some other calamity.
>>4901782Awesome, and your picture reminds me, Caffeine is about to become a seriously precious item due to the fact that no-one's going to be growing it anywhere near us
>>4901941cigs, booze, coffee, chocolate. convicts always knew what's up.
>>4902278Don't forget TP, that shit's gold badum tiss
MEMORANDUMDate: October 30th, 2020To: Erwin Parasol, CEO of the Debouche Lakers GroupFrom: Annabelle Andrews, Probational Laker and Executive Secretary CC: Members of the Debouche Lakers Steering Committee Re: Preliminary Report on Manpower --------------------------------------------------A Preliminary Report on the Manpower of the Debouche Lakers Group Population and Demographics of Debouche, Maine and surrounding areas. According to the 2010 All-American Census, there were 1,643 people who had their primary residence in the Town of Debouche, with 192 of those being incarcerated individuals living in the Consolidated Somerset-Piscataquis Jail (later here-in referred to as “Mt. Kineo”). Additionally, the 2010 All-American Census listed 482 people with their primary residences in one of the other 13 municipalities around Mooseleg lake (later here-in referred to as “the Lake”), with the most in living Seboomook and Northeastern Carry Townships. Altogether, this is a total of 2,137 people with their primary residence around the Lake in 2010. It is reasonable to assume that there was a similar number of people living around the Lake on the morning of October 28th, 2020, when the Soviets launched their preemptive Strike.The 2010 Census also provides demographic information. The median age in Debouche is 54.2 years old, nearly a full decade older than the median age of the State of Maine, which is already the oldest in the Union, at 45.1 years old. Debouche is 96.37% Caucasian (99.44% Caucasian, if you exclude those living in Mt. Kineo), 87.23% of the population are High School Graduates, (93.43% if you exclude those living in Mt. Kineo), and 49.82% of the population has some College or more (58.27% if you exclude those living in Mt. Kineo). Membership and Demographics of the Debouche Lakers GroupThe Debouche Lakers Group (later here-in referred to as “the Lakers”) as of writing has a Roll Call of 299 Full Members from around the Lake, with an additional 7 Probational Members from Mt. Kineo. The current Roll Call does not include the four Firefighters who lost their lives in the Boat House Ambush, but it does include the Animal Control Officer Reginald Mantle, who is MIA and is presumed held captive in Bangor by the Maine National Guard, as well as his mother, Dawn Mantle, who received a Full Membership as a sinecure for the injuries her son received in service to the Lakers. Of the 299 Full Members, only 111 have specific skills (118 counting the Probational Members). There are 18 Lawmen (this includes the Sheriff and the Junior Undersheriff), 26 Guards (this includes the Warden who is also the Senior Undersheriff), 11 Firefighters (again, this does not include the four killed Firefighters, or any Volunteer Firefighters), 6 Paramedics, 8 Nurses, 3 Doctors, 11 Mechanics and 28 Specialists (this includes the MIA Reginald Mantle). The remaining 188 are family members without specific skill sets.
>>4902409Some point while I was working on the reports, I realized it would be fun to have them done up as if they were in-world Memorandum. And as I had already introduced Parasol's Executive Secretary, Annabelle Andrews at the Steering Committee (even though you never actually bothered to speak to her), I figured it would be a perfect fit. As an additional autistic detail, most of the demographics of Debouche echo the demographics of the real world Greenville Maine. I'll try to get the rest of the reports out with the post sometime after dinner.
>>4902453I love it, I'm a sucker for in universe information, we should also get cozy with the Sec in the future it's usually people in those weird jobs that have inordinate amounts of pull in organizations, hopefully we can bribe her with a piece of moose jerky in the future also "Steering Committee" unsettles me in an unspecific way
>>4902453>>4902588I too love detail such as this, being a spreadsheet autist I'm naturally drawn to it I guess.
>>4902453this still alive?
Yeah, I'm still here. Still trying to get the next scene right - I'm not 100% on how I want it to play out. Didn't have the time I thought I would over the weekend, but it seems like my schedule is starting to get a bit less chaotic. Regular posting should resume soon, hopefully once I finally get this scene to play out right.
>>4906287Looking forward to the update Trash, take your time.
>>4906287Hows it going Trash?
Well, it was good while it lasted ig
Rolled 5 (1d6)You did not give an explicit order to do so, but you know that everyone in the convoy is hunkered down, trying to squeeze what protection they can from the questionable cover of the walls and doors of their vehicles. Which is good, of course, no one wants to take any chances here. But … if this does go south, then for everyone’s safety, you need someone to know where those two are. Someone is going to need to take a chance after all. And on your orders, too. With this thought, comes the now-familiar, sinking feeling in your gut. The worry that you are not cut out for command, and the abject fear that you are going to needlessly get someone killed. In fact, now you have had the time to think about it, then it is probably only a matter of time before someone dies under your command, on your orders. Even if you make it back to Mt. Kineo with everyone today, then starting … what, the day after tomorrow? Yeah, you’ll be going outside the wire with crews to loot, strip and demolish abandoned houses, as you were ordered to do by Parasol. At the time, all you were really concerned about was the prospect of all that sweet salvage. But after seeing how dangerous things can get, you have seriously soured on the idea.The worst part of it is, that in your current position, if anything does go wrong, if you do make a mistake, then not only are you going to be unable to fix it by fighting or driving your men out of it, but you are also the least likely to suffer for it. You are not going to be the one in the unsecured houses – in fact, odds are that you will never leave the safety of an uparmored vehicle. That is what is chewing you, chewing your guts like a cow chews cud. When it inevitably happens, odds are, you are not going to be the one to pay for your mistake.And this decision, right here, right now – this one could be that mistake. But you have to make the call. You have to make all of the calls here. You have to give the orders. You have to keep moving forward … er, figuratively forward, in this case. You will need every advantage you can muster to get the convoy there and back again safely, and the prospect here of learning more about how things stand on this stretch of road is too good to pass up. And in case this does not pan out, in case this turns violent, someone is going to need to try to find where the two runaways are … assuming they are still even here. You have been going on and on, in circles, long enough – both inside and outside of your head. Right now, someone needs to take a risk. That someone cannot be you … and you are just going to have to deal with it. “Anderson, I’m going to have my mom call out to these guys. I want you to keep an eye on the woods. You see any movement let me know. And if they start shooting, then lay on the horn – hard, for five, ten seconds straight – and then you drive off, okay? For shots, you don’t need to tell me, you just need to get us out of here, alright?”
>>4925513Once Anderson gives a terse confirmation, and you explain the signal to the rest of the convoy, you tell your mother that she will be the one doing the talking for you. She is understandably nervous, but once you start feeding her lines over the radio, she complies and starts shouting out what you tell her … sort of.“Tell them if they are still here, we want them to know that this was a complete misunderstanding, and we want to talk things out.”“IF YOU DARLINGS ARE STILL HIDING, PLEASE KNOW WE’VE MADE A TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE MISTAKE, AND THAT WE’RE HERE FOR YOU.” “Mom, don’t call them ‘darlings’, they’ll think you’re being condescending! Just … just tell them that the Snowplow driver is still alive, and we are providing him medical attention. And say exactly what -” “YOUR FRIEND IN THE PLOW IS STILL ALIVE! YOU DON’T NEED TO WORRY ABOUT HIM, WE HAVE A NURSE AND A PARAMEDIC WITH US, WITH A BUNCH OF MEDICAL SUPPLIES. I’M SURE THEY’LL BE ABLE TO PUT HIS JAW BACK TOGETHER!”Perhaps this was not your best idea. But as you and everyone else with a radio is pleading with your mother to stop her editorializing, and just to stick with exactly what you say, Anderson gets on the line, and starts shouting over everyone. “Movement! I see movement! Someone is still in the woods!” With that announcement, everyone – including your mother – goes quiet, and the only sound from the convoy is the idling engines. Seconds crawl by, and after what felt like an eternity, a minute passed. While they have not shot at you, they have not responded to you either. What do you do now? >Please Choose ONE of the following:>Simply continue to talk to them, to try to explain your mistake. (Dawn will not editorialize anymore)>Ask them who they are, and what they are doing out on the road in strength.>Tell them that you will remain here, as long as it takes to get the Snowplow driver stabilized, then you will leave him here. (Takes 8+1d15 minutes)>Tell them that you will remain here , as long as it takes to get the Snowplow driver stabilized, then you will leave him here, along with the Snowplow. (Takes 8+1d15 minutes)
>>4925530>>Ask them who they are, and what they are doing out on the road in strength.
>>4925530>Ask them who they are, and what they are doing out on the road in strength.Glad this is not dead
I guess most people abandoned ship, perhaps a new thread is in order?
>>4926072I was thinking about that, but as it seems we got at least three players left, that's enough for me. Look for the next post tomorrow.
>>4926210i've been a little less busy lately. new phone so i might be able to post from work now. hopefully
>>4926210Well alright broski
>>4925589Ditto, I'm worried about bandits but unfriendly neighbours are even worse
Lying on your stolen hospital bed, the seconds continue to crawl by. If the two men who bailed from the back of the Snowplow are in fact still in the woods, then them refraining from shooting at you has to be a good sign, right? And while you are worried that they have not actually engaged you in conversation yet, you do realize that you – or your mother, rather – has not actually asked them any questions yet. But before you try to communicate again, you want specifics from Anderson, as to where exactly these two runaways are. You get back on the radio, and ask Anderson to tell everyone where exactly he saw the movement. He does his best to explain, using the vehicles in the convoy as a point of reference. It is certainly not pin-point accuracy, but if this does turn into yet another shootout, then you should have a fighting chance of returning fire adequately. With that out of the way, you resume feeding lines to your mother, after reiterating the importance of saying exactly what you tell her to. Thankfully, there is no editorialization this time. “Ask them who they are, and what they are doing out on the road in strength.”“Uh… wait, what does ‘in strength’ even mean?”“It means armed, and in a group … like, uh, ‘in force’?”“Why don’t I just say that – or will that be another issue, Reggie?”“Mother, please … fine, ‘in force’ is fine. Just hurry up and say it, before they leave…”“Well excuse me! I didn’t want to do any more dangerous editorializing – ”“Mother!”“WHO ARE YOU, AND WHAT ARE YOU DOING OUT ON THE ROAD IN FORCE?”The Farm Truck has been idling long enough that the exhaust is starting to irritate your lungs, and for the first time, you can notice a distinct smell of blood as Gunther and Big Nate continue their ministrations on the injured Snowplow driver. Suffice to say, the air is almost impossibly tense already. But as that admittedly blunt question sits and stews in it, unanswered … it somehow gets even tenser. Your mind is racing a mile a minute, trying to figure out what to say next, what you, if the roles were reversed, would respond to. You do have an idea, unfortunately…>Please choose ONE of the following:>Words are not going to be enough, what is needed here is a brave gesture. Demonstrate some trust by having one of your men leave the safety of the convoy to address the runaways. >Words are not going to be enough, what is needed here is a reconciliatory gesture. Demonstrate that you do not see them as targets or prey by relinquishing the Snowplow.>Words are not going to be enough, what is needed here is a caring gesture. Demonstrate your humanity by having Gunther and Big Nate operate on the Snowplow driver in the open, to prove that he’s still alive. >Words are not going to be enough, but all you can afford right now is words. You have a schedule to keep, and you have already wasted enough time here.
>>4926744>>Words are not going to be enough, but all you can afford right now is words. You have a schedule to keep, and you have already wasted enough time here
>>4926744>>Words are not going to be enough, but all you can afford right now is words. You have a schedule to keep, and you have already wasted enough time here"Hey can we just have a truce for a minute, you guys did shoot at us first, but we're kinda in the middle of something, we have a hostage that we're rendering aid to and are more than happy to negotiate the release of"
>>4926744>Words are not going to be enough, but all you can afford right now is words. You have a schedule to keep, and you have already wasted enough time here.
>>4926913>>4927034>>4927145>>4927198Okay, so you will have your mother make one more attempt to initiate some sort of negotiation, and if that falls through, then you'll head out. Look for the next post tomorrow.
Words are not going to be enough to convince them to come to the table. What is needed is a gesture, something big, something that demonstrates your sincerity, that proves beyond a reasonable doubt that this whole thing was truly just a misunderstanding. But what can you do? You could order one of your men – preferably Anderson, but realistically whoever you could convince to do so – to leave the safety of the convoy, and stand out in the open, to demonstrate your trust. Or you could have Gunther and Big Nate haul the driver out of the Farm Truck and work on him out in the open, to demonstrate that they can trust you. But your personal fears about sending your people to their deaths needlessly aside, the fact of the matter is that you do not trust these two. You cannot trust these two. You may have wronged them and their friend, the Snowplow driver, but just because you have inadvertently played the part of the villain here, it does not necessarily follow that these men are ‘heroes’. Even if they are not affiliated in any way with the Highwaymen that prematurely ended your first expedition - which you still do not know for sure – you cannot in good conscience order someone to risk their lives in such a display of blind faith.With those gestures off the table, the next best thing would be to return their property to them – the plowless Snowplow. It is the right thing to do, obviously, and it you could do it without putting any of your people in danger … or any more danger than they are already in, you suppose. But, and this pains you to admit, you need that Snowplow. After the loss of the Short Bus, not to mention the superficial damage that has been done to the rest of the Buses under your watch, you need something to offer up to the Armorers. If you have nothing to give them, you fear that they will distance and perhaps even close themselves off to you and the men of your Homestead, just as it seems that at least some of the Motor Pool has started to do, after you went over Beety to get these Buses in the first place. You could always offer them more crabs, or work out some settlement … but you have already taken on a lot of debt, between outfitting the expedition and buying back your stolen gasifier. At the rate you are taking out ‘loans’, you are going to bury yourself and your operation. Considering that you are the only food producing Satellite at the moment, you doubt that Parasol and the rest of the Steering Committee would let you crash and burn – but the prospect of being forced to tread water, not being able to stockpile or save any of the food that you produce, or the salvage that you pick, especially under these dire circumstances … it is a complete and utter non-starter. You are unable to bear the prospect of taking on any more debt. So where does that leave you?
>>4928481Between a rock and a hard place, or perhaps just in the land of gestureless assholes. You cannot afford or risk anything ‘big’ enough to get these boys to talk. All you could do here is keep trying to talk it out, but these runaways (quite reasonably) are not putting much stock in your words. If the Snowplow driver could do the talking, then maybe you might have been able to get them to come to the table … but that man does not even have enough jaw left to wire shut – not to mention that the only wire you have in the Farm Truck is scraps of phoneline from an old job. If the driver survives this ordeal, he is almost certainly going to be a mute. So that is out too. You have tried. You made a genuine effort at reconciliation here. And while you could have tried harder, by risking or offering more, the cruel, hard truth is that you should not. You are not responsible for Outsiders. And while it pains you to treat them like this, in this terrifying ‘new normal’ you need to put your own people first, always. They need to come before others, and they need to come before your pride. That really is all there is to it. But there is still one more question that remains. Now that the chance of any reconciliation is effectively nil, there is the question of what to do with the driver … your prisoner. Despite the material cost of the medical supplies required to save the man’s life, he is still valuable, both as a potential source of intelligence and as a hostage. Obviously, you want to see him eventually returned to his friends, though that might not be possible … or safe, for that matter. Of course, if you are going to return him, you are going to need to be careful. While he is still presumably in a state of shock right now, eventually he will come out of it – and when he does, he will be listening and watching everything. Might be worth transferring him to another vehicle, considering that you are coordinating everything less than two feet from where he lays right now. But those are future concerns. What you need to worry about right now, is what you say about him to his friends. Do you tell them that you will bring him back here, to another specific location, like your group’s last checkpoint on the eastern road away from the lake, or do you leave things more open ended then that? Should you ask for a ransom? Perhaps you should just leave without saying anything. That might be the safest option, but it will seriously complicate any effort to eventually reunite your captive with his group. Of course, if you were seriously considering this being a … one way trip for him, then this would be the obvious choice.
>>4928482>Please Choose ONE of the following: (Please note, this is simply what you are telling them, this is not binding … though saying one thing and doing another would further sour relations) >Inform the runaways that you will return to this very spot, three days from now, to return their driver. >Inform the runaways that you will return to this general area three days from now, to return their driver. >Inform the runaways that you will be at your group’s easternmost checkpoint three days from now, to return their driver.>Inform the runaways that you will release their driver three days from now. Provide no more specifics.>Do not inform the runaways of your intentions, simply leave the scene.>Please choose ONE of the following: >Ask for a ransom (write-in what you believe to be an appropriate price for a maimed, mute human) >Do not ask for a ransom>>4927254I know I said that I was going to have Dawn make one more attempt at trying to get these guys talking, but I realized that the write-in >>4927034 was incorrect. Someone in your party (either Anderson or Gunther, you do not know which) shot the driver, long before the two runaways started taking potshots. With that point, and how the actual vote contradicted the write-in (stop talking vs. try talking some more), I decided to just ignore it after all.
>>4928485>>Inform the runaways that you will be at your group’s easternmost checkpoint three days from now, to return their driver.>>Do not ask for a ransom
>>4928485Ah bugger, I thought they shot first sorry>Inform the runaways that you will be at your group’s easternmost checkpoint three days from now, to return their driver.>No Ransom
>>4928485>>Inform the runaways that you will be at your group’s easternmost checkpoint three days from now, to return their driver.>Do not ask for a ransomPriceless.
>>4928942>>4928701>>4928506Alright - consider this closed. I will have the next post up later today. I also need one roll of 1d100 and one roll of 1d5, to determine the next encounter. Remember, anything under 30 is dangerous, and anything under 20 is an attack.
Rolled 39 (1d100)>>4929288
>>4929291If you are still around, you can roll again, if you like. If the modifier comes up as -10, then that means that means another dangerous encounter. There is 1 more +10, 2 more +5's, 1 more +0, 2 more -5's and 2 more -10's.
Rolled 2 (1d5)>>4929579
>>4929602Okay. Going to get an early dinner, then I will get to writing.
No, no – you cannot seriously entertain the thought of killing your captive, simply to prevent him from passing along information back to his group. It would be completely and utterly unconscionable to do so. You will just have to be careful what you say around him. Of course, this is all assuming that he survives, which is anything but guaranteed. So, if he survives, if he can be interrogated … er, interviewed, then he should be returned back to his people. As a matter of diplomacy, you do not want to antagonize these people (whoever they are) any more than you already have. And as a practical concern, you do not want to feed him any longer than you absolutely need to. So … should be about two days to recover from this unfortunateness, and another day to give your people time to try to coax something from him - three days. As tight as things may be, you are fairly certain that the Lakers can feed one extra mouth for – oh, uh, well … good thing you were not saying any of this out loud for him to hear.Anyway, moving on – with the question of ‘when’ having been settled, the next question is ‘where’. You could arrange to do it here, either in this exact spot, or maybe just in this stretch of road. Probably would be the easiest, but you are aware that committing yourself to being in an unsecured location at a specific date and time is presenting the other party with an excellent opportunity to set up an ambush for you and yours, if they were so inclined. And they very well might be. Better to tell them to come to your group’s easternmost checkpoint, just a few minutes by car further down the road. The location is secured and perpetually manned by one of Bean’s Deputies and one of Polk’s Guards. You are not one hundred percent comfortable telling them where the checkpoint is without you getting the opportunity to warn the checkpoint, but with any luck, you will be back before too long to put them on the alert. With that squared away, you briefly consider asking for something in exchange, to help offset the material and manpower cost of his treatment, but considering that you are trying to foster what little goodwill you can, and that (as far as you know at least) the shooting was an overreaction on … either Anderson or Gunther’s part, you are not sure who – you decide against it. Not to mention, you are personally uncomfortable with the idea of asking for a ransom. You relay all of this to your mother, who for once just does exactly what you want her to do, and repeats it verbatim without any quibbles. As it was before, there is no response from inside the tree line. After realizing that you should specify what time, you tell your mother to tell them ‘at noon’. With that, you order the convoy to move out, and resume traveling on the original route that Fleckkers and Norton took. It is 11:54 am. Just as it turns to 12:00 pm, an uncertain-sounding Anderson gets on his clip radio to make an announcement.
>>4930058“Uh, attention - someone has been cutting down the powerlines on this stretch of road. Looks like some of them are still on the road. Debris in the road too. Splinters and wood chips, odd bits of metal, and the actual powerlines themselves – the wire. Strewn everywhere. It is possible that it could be driven around, but we’d be risking a blowout. Or blowouts.” Gunther asks no one in particular if the convoy still has all of the spare tires that it set out with the first time around, which it does – you have spares for everything except the Snowplow. But it sounds like it would be a question of each driver’s skill if you managed to get through this mess unharmed. Now, the obvious alternative would be to send people out to just get the road clear, but a scavenger like yourself has already picked up on an opportunity. The powerline. If the Seboomook dam is eventually going to be converted to generate hydropower, then it stands to reason that some high voltage cable will be needed somewhere during the conversion. To be sure, there are plenty of powerlines around Mooseleg Lake, but if some time down the road, there was an effort to re-electrify the area, then it would be much, much easier if the existing powerlines had not been cannibalized. You are not sure what kind of price you would get, in fact you are not sure if the Steering Committee or whoever would even be willing to buy the cables right now. But you are certain that once things began moving on the conversion, they would be willing to entertain reasonable offers.>Please choose ONE of the following: >Have your drivers attempt to navigate around the hazards on this stretch of road (Easy Vehicle Skill test for all of the drivers).>Have a group of your hirelings get out and clear the road, leaving the salvage behind. It might still be there on your way back, it even might still be there a week from now. Or not. >Have a group of your hirelings get out and clear the road, taking the downed powerlines and anything else worthwhile.
>>4930061>>Have your drivers attempt to navigate around the hazards on this stretch of road (Easy Vehicle Skill test for all of the drivers).
>>4930061>>Have your drivers attempt to navigate around the hazards on this stretch of road (Easy Vehicle Skill test for all of the drivers).we can think about loot later.
>>4930332Ditto, we seem mostly set for loot right now and we can always cannibalize the outskirts of town.
>>4930061>Have your drivers attempt to navigate around the hazards on this stretch of road (Easy Vehicle Skill test for all of the drivers).
>>4930702>>4930619>>4930332>>4930115Well this seems unanimous. The next thread, Collapsing IX, or considering how short this thread turned out to be, perhaps Collapsing VIIIS would be more appropriate, will start with this crossing. Unfortunately, it looks like my schedule is going to go back to being all over the place again. So rather than accepting sporadic posting and week-long lapses, I'm going to temporarily switch over to an easier to run and write alternate quest, one that I have plotted and even some pre-writing done for. My hope is that while running this alternate for the next month, I will have some time left over at some point to do plotting and a bit pre-writing and mechanical work for this quest, so when Collapsing resumes in about a month, for it's one year anniversary, it resumes smoothly, with the inventory and the fact sheets I've been promising for the better part of the last six months. If any of you were around after my previous Quest, Space Scrapper, was abruptly concluded with the death of the MC due to a really bone-headed and senseless write-in, you might recognize this quest as one of the suggestions I had for what I did next. Inspired by the worlds of the Darkest Dungeon and the Dishonored games, I hope you will consider checking out The Graverobber's Daughter. Either way, I'd like to thank everyone for continuing to be so patient with me as I work things out.
>>4930792>Either way, I'd like to thank everyone for continuing to be so patient with me as I work things out.No worries man, take your time. I'll definitely be checking out the new quest in the meantime.