It was a bright early morning snuggled upto Danny’s pistol, the safety kept on all night long had him restless with the fraught feeling of danger encroaching during night time.
Danny knew he had to leave Sanctuary Hills at some point for his son’s sake, he had grown comforted with the sofa being his safe place where he could see all he needed to between the empty window frames of the front and backyards.
Codsworth had agreed in the morning to keep the home front secure, the last thing Danny ever wanted was no safe place to return to. He had his gun ready and decided to leave the baton behind, he was slim being the fact that Danny could carry astoundingly little, he did an earlier sweep yesterday before bed that ended up lucrative with extra pistols found in the other homes he decided he needed to be stashed around his.
Walking alone up the bridge, everything behind him was confirmed dead. It rose to Danny’s thoughts that if his scouting was unsuccessful aside from Shaun’s reconnaissance, he also had to deal with the factor that Concord may be picked clean of canned food to eat. The cram he ingested last night tasted odd, it had an after taste that made his stomach feel queasy, the medicine was rather parching meaning Danny had to be on the look out for any possibility of fresh water.
Wandering down the road led Danny to the nearby Red Rocket Truck Stop, it was mainly their nearest gas station back in the day although the place had seen better days.
To his surprise, Danny saw the first non-irradiated animal that he didn’t have to put down, a dog. It must’ve had flea’s or perhaps a medical problem but it looked like a rather well kept German Shepherd.
The dog approached him as Danny thought it best to holster away his weapon, he crouched down to it petting his hand rather separated from the fur, checking for ticks as he comforted the dog.
“Lose your owner, buddy? c’mon if you like boy, my wife always wanted a dog like you”.
Danny went scavenging around the truck stop, he found a plated lighter although it took a bit of friction to get started he felt better by the comforting heat he now had access to fire and cigarettes again. Near it, outside was a cigarette bin with an old pack laying on top, he checked to see a couple of fags were missing from it but he added what he could to his own carton. Danny wondered a few things such as how savage were the people of this new Boston? Should he hide the smokes? what about his back story if anybody asked?
He couldn’t help but put a fag along his lip as he cupped his hand trying to keep the friction of heat steady for a smoke. Coughing but with a sigh of relieved stress, Danny felt that his head was swimming in comfortable nicotine that all smokers could relate to. The dog started barking as he ran around in different directions, he whimpered looking back at Danny, he must’ve wanted to tell him that there was something he wanted Danny to see.
There was a small first aid kit just laying between the fuel stations, nothing but bandages but it was a start in the right direction.
He went around to the garage with the fag balanced and expelling smoke between his fingers, there was a Power Armor stand in good condition but left empty.
The dog was still barking but this time he refused to stay silent, as Danny searched what looked like the office, he found a stash of bottle caps making no idea what to do with it but he felt it best to maybe come back for it later.
The ground shook and dirt flew out in the open, even breaching concrete. Enlarged mole rats came surfacing from beneath, they organized in packs and scampered around looking for their smell of prey and the one pack pouncing onto the dog.
Danny drew his gun, he was a lousy shot for something moving around unpredictably, he got close enough to the window frame before tapping on his Pip-Boy and activating a feature Vault-Tec called V.A.T.S – Vault Assisted Targeting System.
Danny’s left arm was out of his control as the Pip-Boy gained command of his limb pressuring it to support the pistols butt as it centered onto each mole rat and with a percentage of success calling out to each body part, Danny had a fair idea which body part he positioned his arms to.
In the manner of an experienced gun slinger, the Pip-Boy did most of the work in killing each mole rat in seconds.
With a new companion in toe, Danny pressed into town as his four legged new friend cantered behind and sometimes ahead of him. The dog was fearless, they came across the sight of what looked only in raw description of a blooded red cow with it’s ribs exposed on the side of the road and what Danny guessed were enlarged mosquito’s… it was hard enough to tell with such a gory sight.
Smaller houses nearby, some were bordered up whilst a few were open for the picking. He proceeded up the stairs of a ruined home, looking as if someone once called it their home. There was a yellow box splattered in blood, in plain it read in faint black paint “My Chems!”. There were injectors and a stimpak but the other looked far from it as sophisticated as the former, Danny could only agree with the dog’s non-opposing disposition that if anything went bleak in town, they’d come back to this exact spot in case of emergency.
Banners came to view in tattered condition as they got closer into town. The hearing of gun shots was within ear shot distance. Danny crouched down, petting the dog on the head to stay low as they ventured together cautiously they kept their heads down and covered looking for a spot to observe.
A dead body was rather close to the sandbags, Danny rushed over ready to pick at his body, the dead man wore bizarre pieces of leather and some pieces like a sacked hood must’ve been for something Danny couldn’t figure out.
Like the corpse, the people up ahead wore things like rags and leather jackets underneath their armor, he grasped the idea and figured it best that at least if he couldn’t use it to protect then he would assume it as a bandolier for more pocket space; himself knowing jingling ammo in his vault suit wasn’t ideal.
The pair, advancing forward in cover. Danny pulling the trigger with his eyes closing and opening, his shots were embarrassing misses but it distracted the enemy long enough for who ever was sniping with lasers on the roof to take advantage and dispatch the enemy.
Picking one by one on the corpses, Danny scavenged around comparing which fit of arm guard would fit around his own arm.
A man was yelling from the balcony, it was hard to hear but something about trapped settlers caught Danny’s attention. He came this far, the dog whimpered running ahead, Danny had little choices but to follow.
After rounding skirmishes of kill after kill with an enemy around the corner, with the help of Danny’s Pip-Boy and V.A.T.S, it was practically a siege.
His bullet’s were running on the low side, he had grabbed a makeshift weapon the corpse had on him, he looked like a friend or at least an ally of the man on the blacony so he saw no objection to burrowing it.
The crank mechanism on it’s side was simple enough to grasp, just a method of crank and shoot, more the crank the more powerful the shot.
To his amazement, Danny had no idea till now how much destruction the Pip-Boy on his arm did for his behalf compared to an entire service dedicated to the military, made him wonder why the scientists weren’t fighting in the front lines? by that logic.
Specifying his left leg, torso and a bit of muscle pain, the Pip-Boy didn’t take into account his physicality or health, Danny was aching internally on the toll that the device could amount onto him but he pushed forward using V.A.T.S one last time as he shot one of them with his own aim trying to knock down the door leading to the balcony and the other was shot dead by V.A.T.S.
An African American man stood before him dressed in a cowboy like attire, he was holding a better version then the makeshift laser rifle Danny was holding in his own hands.
“Man, I don’t know who you are but your timing is impeccable. Preston Garvey, Commonwealth Minutemen.”
Danny was taken a little aback with laughter, the gravity of his situation didn’t hit deep enough to phase him at the irony in front of him.
“Minutemen? So now I’m traveling backwards in time?” Danny gave a chuckle.
“‘Protect the people at a minutes notice’ That was the idea.So I joined up, wanted to make a difference. And I did, but… things fell apart. Now it looks like I’m the last Minuteman left standing.”
Disoriented in his own thoughts, Danny didn’t exactly know what to believe with himself.
“The worlds changed so much. None of this makes sense.”
Preston snapped his fingers in front of Danny bringing him back to reality, his gazing into nowhere has done nothing but become worse since then, he was reminded of his military service as a recruit having his dog tags being flushed down the latrine by his ‘army buddies’.
“Who’s around that could find a missing?” Danny inquired.
“There may’ve been a few before but a month ago, there were twenty of us.Yesterday there were eight. Now, we’re five, First it was the ghouls in Lexington. Now, this mess”.
“Sorry, sounds rough”, not knowing anything else to say.
The mechanic behind Preston interjected as he was working hard on the computers, he suggested there was an idea to put an end to the people outside they call ‘raiders’.
Plan required a few requirements to get started but to the subject at hand, Sturges suggested that there was a suit of T-60 Power Armor abandoned next to the crashed Vertibird on the roof. If Danny could theoretically use the servo’s in the arm’s to rip the mounted mini-gun off the Vertibird, then the raiders could be sliced up like Christmas turkey by the hailstorm of bullets.
Catching interest, Danny noticed the elderly woman dressed in a gypsy attire; it was interesting group he came across complete with a schizophrenic and an insufferable whiner.
“Mame? is he your dog?”
“Oh he ain’t my dog. No sir. Dogmeat, he’s what you’d call his own man. I know he’ll stick with you now, I saw it!”
“You ‘saw it’?”
“It’s the chems, kid. They give ole Mama Murphy the ‘Sight’. Been that way for as long as I can remember”
Danny was feeling the pressure weigh down around him, it got to him a little hearing words of flight and fancy overcome a real reason.
“It can help you kid and right now I can see there’s something coming. Drawn by the noise and the chaos… and it… is… Angry!”
It was a mixed bag of reaction, he wanted to believe Mama Murphy but it sounded like a trick or just something charismatic to say.
After a grueling battle, it came to an end, there was silence in the air and blood filled soaking the street running along bullet casings from both sides.
Sustaining damage internally, Danny just couldn’t believe how easily he was co-ercable, screaming into his helmet that only dogmeat could hear, he sulked inside it wishing for his old life back… fighting Death claws was just something he never signed up for; the psychological pressure stipulated onto him.
He cleared his throat, he wasn’t a man for adrenaline junking but he decided as he was to open the doors that staying with this group was going to be a death sentence and he wanted to take Dogmeat away from that life.
“That was one hell of a display, and I hope you don’t mind me but I wan’t to show my thanks”.
“I’m on my own side, Garvey”
“Fair enough, but at least let me pay you some caps, you’ve earned this”
They made it hard for Danny to reject much from them, they seemed genuinely grateful regardless but thinking for his own safety wasn’t going to deter his decision.
“I didn’t do this for the money”
“Alright, you just reminded me of my friends, like all the other minutemen they did this for the sake of others over themselves.”
Mama Murphy comes into the conversation sitting along the side bench, adding her advice.
“Everything you’ve said, well, that much is true. Cause I’ve seen your destiny and I know your pain.”
“Don’t give me that ‘destiny’ crap” Danny snapped.
Preston speaking his mind right up to Danny’s Power Armored Helmet,
“I just saw you go toe-to-toe with a twenty foot tall irradiated lizard. You telling me you can’t keep an open mind after all that?”
There was nothing more on Danny’s mind then to remind Preston it was him who saved their asses and ‘no’ they couldn’t just tell him to keep an ‘open mind’ after near death and situational pent up angst.
“The sight can show you the way kid. The Great Green Jewel of the Commonwealth, Diamond City. The biggest settlement around.”
Danny gaining some composure back, he decided to give Mama Murphy a chance and asked her a question for Shaun’s sake.
“Do you know where my son is? where is Shaun?”
Mama Murphy was giving her input but she was feeling frail and tired, warning Danny that she needed to rest up again before using the sight again.
Danny was feeling at a desperate cusp, his information for his son was so close so he pushed the subject again.
“Mama Murphy, please. I’m working from nothing and could use all the information I can get.”
She was just to tired telling him again the same things.
They were ready to move out as a group with the way cleared thanks to Danny. Preston asked if he would like to come to Sanctuary Hills with them, but he declined.
“I might see you guys later, but you can find me at the Red Rocket Truck Stop if needed. I… I just need some time to myself.”