Your crew joins Rutha in her safe house hideout that lies outside of Crater Town. She has enough food and supplies to get you all patched up. Figrin is able to rendezvous with your crew, and be brought up to speed on the chaos that erupted in Crater Town. A dim kerosene lantern lights your crew in the low-ceiling dugout where you all have taken refuge.
You begin to create a plan to sneak into the vault. Rutha is able to confirm that the apartment itself would not have the ability to hold many of the rangers, they would be camped at the base of the apartment building. It’s a deep dive into the Ruin, moving overland is treacherous, and there is the option of sewers, but this leaves most of the journey by foot, in the mysterious underground tunnels beneath the city.
Rutha shifts in her cross-legged position, getting comfortable on the canvas floor, dirt underneath.
“So what are you thinking? Through the tunnels or take the scenic route in the van?”
We barely made it out of town with our lives. Jax had no idea how over the head he was when he accepted to meet with Rutha, but now that things are moving, there’s really no choice but to proceed. Luckily, we were able to find refuge in Rutha’s safe house. A half-buried storage unit on the edge of the Waste. It was there we met back up with Figrin and set to work on a plan.
According to Rutha, we could either proceed to drive our way to the apartment or sneak through the subterranean tunnels that stretch throughout the whole city. Taking to the streets would be faster and provide a clear idea of what we were getting into, but we’d be at the mercy of whatever the Rangers had set up. They were sure to have secured the area and Jax wasn’t sure we’d be able to face their arrows again. Alternatively, we could avoid the Rangers by going underground, but it was risky. You could easily run out of supplies or get lost. Plus no one would ever be able to find us if the fog or some other dark thing made a mess of things. In the end, the tunnel would be our path forward. The Rangers were too big of a threat.
Rutha dropped us off at the tunnel entrances and granted Jax her codex of notes. Years of knowledge gathered as a Slagger would be of great use to the team and Jax would safeguard that knowledge. He felt much better carrying a notebook than a gun, which he refused to carry and handed off to Figrin. It suited him better anyway. With our gas masks on, we dove into the darkness.
The tunnels were intended to have some kind of sense to them. Follow the pipes. Find a hub. Choose the right path. Repeat. But even with Rutha’s notes, the architects and builders clearly had different ideas. We got lost very quickly and found an old hovel, set in an alcove of the tunnels. Curious. It was clearly occupied and well-supplied. Figrin found a pair of well-oiled boots, but the whole place seemed off. It smelt terrible and there were signs of blood everywhere. Who could live like this?! A slagger girl, that’s who.
She appeared from the darkness like a shade and wasn’t too happy that we were rummaging through her stuff. Jax understands the need to scavenge and that the Waste isn’t kind, but at what cost? Were we no better than the Rangers by taking this girl’s belongings? Jax was not cut out for these kinds of situations so he trusted Fang, Dim, and Figrin to handle it if things went south, but this girl was clearly not right in the head. Her whole body seemed to be stained with blood that Jax didn’t want to know from where. Jax couldn’t help but feel relieved when we finally left, but something about that girl made him wonder if they’d ever see her again…
Jax finally saw the sense in Rutha’s notebook and was able to warn the rest of the group of what was ahead. Some great speedy thing was noted to be lurking in the waters ahead. If they could all move quietly, there wouldn’t be an issue. It wasn’t until it was too late that Jax realized all the capable fighters he had with him meant an assortment of loud, clanging gear came with them. And of course, that drew the attention of…the beast.
In reality, Jax had no idea what it was. By the time the thing’s tongue slammed into him and back into its mouth, he was already racing to the other end of the chamber. Sure, he lost his zippo lighter, but it could have it. Jax could hear the others scuffling with it and he was pretty sure Fang dove into the water, which is insane, but before Jax could catch his breath, the beast was gone. Phew!
Continuing on into the darkness, after several hours of walking, we finally made it to the base of the apartment building. Rutha said that we’d just have to climb through a covered tunnel and we’d be in. Looking around though, her description didn’t match the scene. There were tubes and big machines everywhere we looked. Pumping out acid and pushing the smog up on the streets. Jax was curious about what the operation was since this level of machinery was pretty rare in the Waste. With some luck, he found a journal lying on a desk that might provide some answers. Books always have the answers.
…despite setbacks, the work must continue. They don’t understand what I aim to accomplish. That I’m trying to save the Waste. Not destroy it! Do they not understand what is possible? That I could make a new paradise out of this place. That I can hold back the madness and the insanity! It could all be burned away!
The Ruin and its smog show great potential. The Howlers, in particular, show promise. They handle my alterations the best, but I still need Luther’s secrets… The Rangers can have all the rest. Guns! Pitiful, when one could attack the mind. Still a true test of their potential is needed.
And that’s where you come in, dear reader. Thank you for the valuable data.The Chemist
Now, Figrin had been telling Jax and the others stories about the Chemist. He’d just gotten back from defeating him. Burning him alive and throwing him down a deep, dark pit. But how could that be when this note was directed at Jax, by the Chemist? There wasn’t much time to think as great hulking brutes emerged from some stasis tube and marched through the acid unaffected.
In the next few minutes, Jax’s attention was split between researching the journal for some clues on how to defeat these things and watching Dim and Figrin, and Fang attacked by these hulking experiments. There was a great explosion and one erupted into a ball of flame. The other used some length of wire to pull Figrin and Dim into the acid. In his panic, Jax found the right page and noted a safeguard to disable the things. Fang was close to it. A switch on the far side of the room would remotely shut it off. As the lumbering brute descended on Dim and Figrin, Fang leaped through the acid and flipped the switch. The creature slumped.
Beep. Beep. Beep…
Shutting those things off wasn’t all that switch did apparently. A countdown had begun. A single security camera watched as Jax and the others ran up and out of the chamber to street level. A boom was heard below. We had made it. We had made it back to see the sun…
Dim (War Dog)
MIA Figrin (Boomer)
Historian and Chronicler