Sunday, 18 March 2012

Wasteland: On the Atchison, Topeka, and the Santa Fe

This time, I decided to head to the Rail Nomads and see what they were about.  It seems that three clans, the Atchison, Topeka, and the Santa Fe clans had found an ancient train and travelled about the rail system, pulled by oxen.  When they came to a place they liked, they would set up their great tents for a time.  Immediately on entering the camp, we were accosted by a man calling himself the Brakeman.  Paragraphs, as always, here.

Do you hear that whistle down the line?
I figure that it's engine number forty-nine.
She's the only one that'll sound that way.
Although I had decided to accept the job, something was a little off, so I decided to ask around a little about the clans and the brakeman.  I met the Engineer, a friendly and seemingly trustworthy man, if a little closed-minded.  He mentioned his distrust of both the Brakeman and the Topekans.  Apparently, the Brakeman would frequently dabble in arcane matters, even daring to suggest that the nomads pull their train via an engine, rather than the correct and traditional method of oxen, which would surely bring down the wrath of the gods.

On the Atchison, Topeka and the Santa Fe.

There was also a hobo oracle, who would offer prophecy when given alcohol to drink.  I'm sceptical, but if nothing else, it'll make the poor man happy for a few hours.  Having no alternative if I wanted to find out more, I headed to Quartz.  Entering Scott's Bar, I was greeted by the liveliest sight I had seen in the Wasteland.  The Ranger Centre came alive only during training and drills, Rockpool was peaceful, the Agricultural Centre too concerned with it's problems, and most of the nomads stayed inside their guarded tents.

Not wishing to be distracted just yet, I headed straight for the man who was most likely to be the Head Crusher.  The Head Crusher had little to say, simply sending me back to the Nomads to presumably receive my rewards.

I checked at what appeared to be the Atchison tent, and gave them my password.  The guard had little to say, simply giving me a shovel, telling me to stand on a certain point on the railroad, and walk south a certain number of steps.  I followed the instructions, and found I was expected.

After digging up the reward, which consisted of various expensive items worth selling, some thugs jumped out of hiding, forcing me to split them open with my trusty "ax".  And that was it.  What was the point of all this, I wonder?   I remember hearing somewhere that the Head Crusher eats Visa Cards, which may or may not be true.  But even if it is, why didn't he pay me himself?  Why did the conspirators try to kill me when I went to claim my reward?

Stay tuned, when next time the conspiracy becomes even darker, and we look at a few issues with violence in Wasteland.

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