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Author Topic: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)  (Read 20325 times)

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Offline Scrasamax

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Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« on: November 08, 2010, 08:30:00 AM »
After sitting in recharge mode for close to nine years, Eva reached 100% charge and her systems restarted. Like Rip Van Winkle waking from his decades long slumber, her world was vastly changed. The comfortable suburban home she powered down in was in ruins. The windows were broken, and there was a hole in the ceiling. The engineer (Name: Data Missing) wasnt home. No one was, and it was obvious the power was out. That wasn't much of a surprise, the power had been going in and out regularly Calaway. Power logs indicated that running direct power access was taking as long as 3 days to reach 100% charge. Her body was covered with a layer of dust and fine debris. The solar charger was laying on the floor, half in the shade. Between shadows, dust and some of the cells being flat out broken, no wonder the charge cycle had taken so long. It did seem odd that (engineer) did not repair the charger, or even just sit the unit back in the window.

Outside was much the same. The community of Calaway was ruined. The houses were shattered, burnt, falling in on themselves. There was no sign of human life, nor was there indication of livestock or pets.

[Anomaly Detected...

Processor network unstable
Irregular activity in SPU sectors 11, 17, 21, 22, 24, 35, 39, 44
Corruption detected in multiple sectors
...running corrective diagnostics]

Eva stood perfectly still, her neuro-electronic brain sorting through millions of lines of code and running file correction software.

[Corruption Unresolved...

Recommend return to home Charge station and access HitomiTech software support for data restoration]

Eva smirked, an involuntary twitch, mirth. HitomiTech had been offline for thirty some odd years, (engineer) had done all her maintenance. He made constant comments about tech support being useless, and that all the corrective software installed, and his code would keep her brain cobweb free.

She guessed he was right. Basic operation procedure should have been to sit in the chair until someone interacted with her.

Then someone did. Lost in operational updates and memory restorations, someone all but snuck up on her.

"You look lost," a (female) voice said, "You an arco-exile?" By appearance, the gender of the speaker was well concealed by heavy clothing, and her face was covered by goggles and a scarf. Temperature registered as 'cold'.

« Last Edit: November 12, 2010, 10:54:21 AM by Scrasamax »


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Offline EchoMirage

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2010, 01:44:45 PM »
[Engineer] and her had left the arcology fifteen years ago, not on good terms with several influential individuals, and not entirely voluntarily.
Hence, the truthful answer was more 'yes' than 'no'.
Some footage from that time she had flagged as important, though whatever had happened in between put innumerable errors in them. Time and power permitting, she would analyze them again. She'd have to analyze a lot, to sort the memories, and find out what transpired - and what course she should take.

There was concern in the stranger's voice, and she did not seem to be a threat.
"Good guess - it happens to be true" Eva smiled, brushing the debris and dirt aside. "Please forgive me - I am not in a very presentable state ... and my 'home' offers little comfort I could share."
"Captain, the buttocks are moving from the pink into the red and purple spectrum! We cannot maintain this rate of spanking any longer!"

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Offline Scrasamax

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #2 on: November 13, 2010, 09:18:32 PM »
"Yeah, there isn't much sharing these days, its all either trade, or flat out taking." the (female) said. "The name's D'Shannon. used to live around here when I was little, barely remember it. There were trees," she said looking at the charred and shattered stumps. "But it looks like lumber-rats, and fire took care of those."

"Did you live around here? Do you know what happened to some of the people here?" she asked.

Eva detected the sound of internal combustion engines, most likely matches being single seat velociped, small engine lawn tractor, or personal motor-bike. Logic deduced that the first two were unlikely, meaning that there were raiders coming.


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Offline EchoMirage

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2010, 03:49:51 AM »
The last question might have been tricky - but Eva had pondered it to length previously, and not once. The answer was 'yes, I am' - she had to maintain homeostasis, responded to stimuli, was partially biological, even could grow to a certain degree, comparable to that of an average adult, and with a workshop, spare parts and sufficient time, she might be able to reproduce.

"Eva is my name, and yes, I did - this was my boss' house - which leads me to the fact that we should visit the cellar, and hide; unless you wish to have our lives cut short. Several bikes are coming in fast, and rarely are they without a rider; biker gangs were never good news, and now even less so. Follow me."

She took D'Shannon's hand, and led her to the hidden stairs to the cellars; [Engineer] used to store supplies there and prepare it for hiding, in case [They] would come after him.

She concealed the door again, and felt up the flashlight in its docking station. There was a distinct possibility its accumulator would not be entirely empty.

"Now we can talk - but in a whisper."

With one ear to the door, Eva explained:
"Arlene Arbuckle moved to the arcology after a prospect of marriage, Cale Bellefleur and Katrina Bellefleur went to California; Reverend Derier sought to organize the Heights on Hallow's Hill into a fortified armed community - from what I know, he failed; Erica Esper I chased away... silent now, here they come."
"Captain, the buttocks are moving from the pink into the red and purple spectrum! We cannot maintain this rate of spanking any longer!"

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Offline Scrasamax

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2010, 08:47:37 AM »
The motorcyclists indeed turned out to be raiders, they stopped not far from [engineer]'s house. There was some shouting of orders, and the sound of things being broken, likely one of the battered fences was being torn down for campfire fuel. After a few minutes, Eva was able to determine that there were three such raiders.

"Alright, we got a few hours to kill," [leader] said. "We can scavenge this s**thole, see if there is anything left in this place. I got a pack of smokes for either of you if you find some whiskey or skin mags." The others went out of her hearing range, but were undoubtedly going through the shells of the houses, looking for anything of value or interest.

"So," D'Shannon said in a whisper, "Do you have anything to eat?"


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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #5 on: November 15, 2010, 01:49:24 PM »
There was a certain temptation to say "yes I do" and keep sitting, though that avenue of humor was best reserved for [Engineer] and most people's reactions to it were rather poor. Celeste had been provocatively literal-minded like that when it suited her, though she was dead, taken by the accident.
Eva loved linguistics, for the nuances and fine points of human speech were so unlike programming, which left no room for error; indeed, language felt alive, and using it likewise.

Turning the flashlight to its lowest setting, she examined the shelves - apparently, there was canned food and some gear; she'd have to make an inventory and choose what to take along after the bikers left and it was safe to make noise. There was no sense in staying here; locations were not home - people were.

Slowly, she opened a can of peaches, luncheon meat and sweet corn, placed them on a piece of cloth, folded old newspapers to resemble napkins and two more pages into simple flowers, which she placed in an empty paint can.

Wiping two spoons and handing D'Shannon one, she sat next to the meal and prompted her: "It is served - sadly, I can currently do no better; please, take no offense."
"Captain, the buttocks are moving from the pink into the red and purple spectrum! We cannot maintain this rate of spanking any longer!"

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Offline Scrasamax

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2010, 07:49:20 AM »
"Take no offense? This is splendid," D'Shannon whispered, "I've been eating snared squirrels and wild cherries for days, taste is good but one too many cherries and you spend more time 'sitting'.

There was a rattle at the door to the safe room, one of the raiders was trying to check them out. D'Shannon dropped her spork and pulled her 10mm pistol.

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Offline EchoMirage

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #7 on: November 16, 2010, 11:14:56 AM »
'May Asimov turn in his grave' Eva thought, and withdrew the shotgun [Engineer] stored there for just such occasions from the locker. Loaded it was, the oily rags it was wrapped in removed swiftly. She'd have to forge some better hardware in the likely case that the situation outside deteriorated further during her sleep.

Though she was aware of the laws of robotics as they were penned, such situations necessitated weighing the sides - her inaction would see D'Shannon harmed, that was likely; the behavior of the looters would answer another - whether they were actually a detriment to the human race.

She turned off the light, and waited.
"Captain, the buttocks are moving from the pink into the red and purple spectrum! We cannot maintain this rate of spanking any longer!"

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Offline Scrasamax

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #8 on: November 16, 2010, 01:05:04 PM »
Three days Eric had hunted the Raiders, they were sloppy, and slow. Instead of making good time, they stopped constantly. He didnt even have to stay close to track them, if they stopped moving they either lit a fire or shot at things. If there was neither, they were scavenging ruins that had been scavenged a dozen times over. Lazy, stupid, violent.  They had shown up at the edge of his freehold a week ago, traded shots with the patrol and seemingly fled. The next night they rode in like demons and had burned down half of the buildings with molotov cocktails as well as killing or wounding a dozen freeholders, more than half of them women and children.

The boss seemed to be content smoking cigarettes and tossing trash into the shell of a burning tire, the two others were more intent on breaking open a locked cellar door, (Survival, Observation) it looked like the area was inhabited, or had been recently. People who huddled in these ruins seldom made it obvious that they were there, but a trained eye could spot the details, unbroken windows, cleared hedges for line of sight, obstructed main doors, the like.

If there werent squatters hiding inside the cellar, there was more than likely something of value down there.


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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #9 on: November 16, 2010, 03:06:23 PM »
Eric stepped quietly closer, drawing into the shadows of an abandoned building about 50 yards away; easily within the killing range of his bow.  Running his hand absently over the smooth wood, he studied the raiding group.  Picking off the leader might throw the others into confusion long enough for him to draw and fire again, perhaps.  But killing them here would also deprive Eric of his lead back to their base, and he was determined to wipe out the whole stinking hive if he could. 

Though he burned for their deaths, Eric was a patient man.  He slowed his breathing, clearing the anger from his head.  Their deaths would come soon enough.  Leaning back against the wall, Eric watched the men with a predator's eyes, keeping an ear out for any new arrivals.  He hoped that whoever had been in the area recently had cleared out, or had sense enough to hide.  As the two lackeys began breaking down the cellar door, Eric also loosed his old pistol in its holster, just in case. 

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Offline Scrasamax

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #10 on: November 17, 2010, 08:11:39 AM »
After a few heavy thuds, the lock and door frame gave in. The door slammed against the side of the cellar door. The two raiders rushed into the room, first one in get dibs on the best stuff in the cellar.

(D'Shannon is going to shoot one of the raiders with her pistol, Eva will be able to act first)



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Offline EchoMirage

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #11 on: November 17, 2010, 04:33:42 PM »
Concealed in the darkness below stairs, Eva aimed at the intruders; with a simple alteration of her voice modulator, she yelled at them with a rough, deep and stern voice: "Get the hell out, before I blast you to pieces, you gorramn punks!"

Whether it would work or not, it would help her decide - no sense in shooting desperate looters, after all.
"Captain, the buttocks are moving from the pink into the red and purple spectrum! We cannot maintain this rate of spanking any longer!"

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Offline Scrasamax

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #12 on: November 18, 2010, 09:29:39 AM »
"Give it up, pops!" the lead raider shouts suddenly backing out of line of sight, "You're outnumbered and outgunned."

"We'll just take your food and booze, you get to keep your life if you give up, now!" the second raider shouts.

d**nation, the leader thought, hearing all the shouting. Looks like another badger nest, some old bastard holed up in a cellar. They usually had some good loot, but getting out with all the guys you went in with was pretty slim. Close quarters, their turf, and the sons of &^%$@es usually had some sort of trap system, or a shotgun. Or both.

And that was why God saw fit in invent things like dynamite and hand grenades. He stubbed out his smoke, and headed for the cellar.


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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #13 on: November 18, 2010, 10:30:37 AM »
Eric groaned inwardly when he heard the shouting, cursing his luck.  He really didn't want to kill the raiders yet -- not without questioning them at least -- but he'd be d**ned if he stood by and let them kill any more innocents.  Knowing that he could only risk a few shots in this cold before the string snapped, Eric nonetheless nocked an arrow and drew the bow back, taking careful aim at the raid leader.  An arrow to the chest would kill him more slowly than a hollow-point .38 special, and Eric still intended to get his answers.  With a quick prayer to the All-Father, he set the arrow loose.

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #14 on: November 19, 2010, 02:12:03 AM »
Well aware of treachery in the leader's voice, Eva just got behind a metal cupboard, and pressed it to obstruct the entrance.
"Please, hide in the back room, D'Shannon, I will join you shortly."

Then, she withdrew likewise - if the raiders intended to come down, they well might, but would stand in the light, unable to see anything.
"You're not getting me kids, ye bastards!" she shouted, and joined her surprise guest.

"I used to do acting, back... well, before. Pretty good, don't you think?" she inquired sheepishly in her normal voice.
"Captain, the buttocks are moving from the pink into the red and purple spectrum! We cannot maintain this rate of spanking any longer!"

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #15 on: November 19, 2010, 09:30:40 AM »
D'Shannon nodded, those bastards didnt know how many might be down in the basement. From surprise, the 10mm was a heck of a weapon.

The two raiders made room for the boss, the first and taller of the two grinned. It was always a surprise when they smoked out a badger nest. Flashbang? Smokebomb? Hand grenade? Dynamite? The best so far had been a handful of stink bombs, the cowards had come out puking like party wimps. The the boss jumped.

The arrow was an easy shot, lower ribs, backside.

He shouted, he pulled his gun and fired blindly into the trees, @!#$ing Michigander primitives with their bows and godd**n tomahawks!

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #16 on: November 19, 2010, 02:07:11 PM »
As the leader spun and began wasting ammo into the nearby tree cover, Eric was already nocking another arrow.  Figuring he had one, maybe two shots left before the raiders figured out the direction they were coming from, Eric lined up another shot at the leader's unprotected side and fired again.

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #17 on: November 19, 2010, 06:11:19 PM »
"Sounds like deliverance alright - and there I was, thinking that we would have to sit out the siege. Sit tight, this may be over soon."
"Captain, the buttocks are moving from the pink into the red and purple spectrum! We cannot maintain this rate of spanking any longer!"

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #18 on: November 20, 2010, 12:09:58 PM »
D'Shannon held for a moment, her nerves twitched, her hand sweating on the grip of the pistol. Someone outside was shooting at the raiders, it might be more raiders, it might be help. Ha! Help. There was only help for those who helped themselves. She checked the slide action of the gun.

"I'm not hiding down here and waiting for the winner, I dont think you should either. You wont like what they do to women," D'Shannon said. She turned and went up the stairs, slowly. She paused at each step, eyes open wide, staring up and out. There was another scream, but no gunfire...

The Leader dropped his pistol, he had been shot with a gun before, and that was preferrable to godd**ned arrows. The bullet, if it stuck in you, was pretty small, and didnt keep you from moving. It could still very easily kill you. But the arrow, the godd**ned arrow was right there, sticking out of his side, and then there was a second arrow. The second was a bad hit, vitals, it would take meds to heal from that kind of hit.

Two gunshots rang out, the hard loud report of a 10mm magnum pistol. Pain, d**ned the arrows. Becker was on the ground and there was one of the badgers, gun in his hand, her hand... Becker's brain was blown out and Carson was on the ground, blood spurting from his neck...

Eric was shocked to see someone come sneaking out of the cellar, a slab sided pistol in hand. The second raider never saw the bullet that blew his brains out and the second turned in time to see muzzle flash and catch a round in the neck. The Leader wavered, and fell to his knees, the cellar dweller holding the gun on him, but not firing...

"Much thanks, Robin Hood!" the cellar dweller was a woman...


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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #19 on: November 21, 2010, 02:06:59 AM »
Eva considered D'Shannon's course of action idiotic - running up from darkness into daylight through a narrow ascending corridor with potentially noisy stairs into an unknown number of enemies was a substantial health risk right there.

Not grabbing the reckless woman's arm Eva considered a failing of hers, for a millisecond, before charging after her into the fray. Apparently, the raiders were far too oblivious to notice someone running up the stairs, and only their leader was alive, barely so.

"Spill your guts" she aimed the shotgun at him "before you do so literally... who knows, if you talk, we may even save you. After all, I do have a medical degree." She thanked her designer, for her face was excellently suited for enigmatic smiles.

"To you out there - we are very gracious, and it's unnecessary to shoot more arrows at us, thank you!" she shouted thereafter.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2010, 12:01:06 PM by EchoMirage »
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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #20 on: November 22, 2010, 07:44:59 AM »
Eric slowly rose up out of the half-crouch he had assumed after firing his second shot, his face registering mild surprise that the two cellar residents appeared to be women.  Deciding that the man he had heard earlier must still be downstairs somewhere, possibly wounded, Eric slung his bow carefully across his back and strode forward to meet them.

"No thanks are necessary, ma'am.  But I'm grateful that you didn't kill all of them -- I have business with that one there."  Eric turned cold eyes on the wounded raider before him.  "I'm betting that you're in a lot of pain right about now.  If you answer my questions, I can end that for you.  If not . . ."  Eric left the threat hanging, and waited for the raider's response.

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #21 on: November 22, 2010, 08:11:39 AM »
"Ah hell, you are one of those d**ned Neo-Europeans," the raider said. "When you say end it, I am betting you ain't talking medical care like hotcakes there,"


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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #22 on: November 22, 2010, 09:43:33 AM »
"I suggest you do not anger the threatening gentleman with the bow, lest his wrath might chase us - feeble women - off, fearing for our honor and bodily health" Eva supported the stranger's position with a dead-serious face. "If he lets us help, there may be hope for you - so, best hurry."
"Captain, the buttocks are moving from the pink into the red and purple spectrum! We cannot maintain this rate of spanking any longer!"

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Offline Dossta

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #23 on: November 22, 2010, 10:31:14 AM »
Eric nodded in the woman's direction, acknowledging her before crouching to look the raider in the eyes.  "While peace-loving folk like these have little to fear from me, you and your kind are a different matter.  I have little hope for your survival with a shaft in your guts, but I may permit this lady to try if she deems you worthy.  Sounds like that will depend on how well you cooperate.  So, lets start with the easy ones: who was with you the night you attacked my folk, and where are they now?"
« Last Edit: November 22, 2010, 04:19:29 PM by Dossta »

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Offline Scrasamax

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Re: Pontiac (Post-Apocalyptic Arco)
« Reply #24 on: November 23, 2010, 09:14:31 AM »
Well, two of 'em are right there on the ground," the raider former leader said. "There were two other groups, Sal's band of roughriders and Kevin and his mob. We split ways about a day south of your Little England camp." He looked at the arrow in his side.

"If you want more than that, you should let them see what they can do. There are a few medical supplies in my saddlebags on my bike."


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