"Thing is... the game was rigged from the start." I hear a gunshot accompany a muzzle flash, and the man in the checkered suit with the gruff tribals who ambushed and accosted me were replaced by pitch-black darkness. I am empty, as empty as the stretch of road I occupied on my trek to New Vegas, tasked with delivering my last package as a Courier, on the lonesome road to Vegas. I honestly don't remember anything between the flash and waking up to the cool air of a humming ceiling fan flowing over my face.
"Good, you're awake!" A man with a somewhat gruff, yet gentle voice, seems satisfied with my state of consciousness, and further inquires, through routine medical procedure for patients who have received some form of cranial trauma, whether I retained my mental capabilities, such as who I was. Unfortunately, though I tried my best to rack my memory, I couldn't remember much of my past except for mere fragments and blurry images that didn't make cognitive sense. I could not even remember my name. Though I was disheartened, a singular phrase kept appearing across the canvass of my mind: "The game was rigged from the start." I look up at the elderly medical practitioner, still waiting for me to utter a syllable to let him know I had not lost my verbal abilities, and in that instant, gave myself a new identity, one that reflected and conflicted my homicidal, smooth-talking assailant's last words before pulling the trigger that robbed me of my life, both figuratively and literally.
The good doctor, though scoffing at my new identity, seemed relieved that I could retain rational thought as well as answer a question, and therefore hold a conversation. The doctor, who said his name was Mitchell, handed me a complicated looking device that, to my knowledge of advanced technologies, allowed me to view my head at different angles, with amazing accuracy. I had to admit, the man could definitely handle a needle and thread, as I could barely make out the long scar interlinking two faint impacts on the flesh of my forehead. I assume the man who shot me felt one 9mm bullet to my skull wasn't enough, and it appears that another at point blank range didn't fulfill his preference for leaving me as a corpse, further solidifying my choice of new name to defy his claim of rigging things into his favor.
Doc Mitchell proceeded, rather hastily in my opinion, to test my balance and capacity for walking, by asking me to make my way to what looked like a Pre-War physical aptitude game. I silently questioned the mental state of the man who supposedly repaired my recently perforated cranium, but immediately dismissed these surmises as I am sure no singular medical practitioner in the Pre-War Wasteland could have at his or her disposal a full arsenal of proper medical equipment, and would therefore have to make due with what was available. Surveying the room, I spot the operating table I most likely occupied during the operation. I was astonished that the man who performed an almost immaculate surgery with such a stunted array of surgical instruments was housed in the same small building in which he lived, and not in a prestigious clinic such as the ones I had heard of in the Commonwealth.
Before I can question him about his training in the field of medicine, he urges that I operate the machine in front of me. I now firmly trust the elderly doctor, and proceed to work the "Vit-O-Matic Vigor-Tester," and notice that there is a delay in the time between pressing the buttons and the turning of the tiles, probably caused by a damaged circuit in the relay board. I hunch down and feel the sides of the machine for the door panel, my head swimming slightly from the sudden movement, and quickly assess the inner machinations and processes of the ancient machine. After a few tweaks, I test the buttons again and find that the delay is practically unnoticeable, and present, with a flourish, to the doctor the newly revitalized and invigorated Vit-O-Matic Vigor-Tester, keeping this pun to myself. He is quite astonished and thoroughly convinced that I have either retained my faculties or perhaps benefited from the near-death experience.
I decide to keep it a mystery, and follow him into the next room with a couch and a lounge chair that could also stand to be refurbished and a music stand. He asks if I would take a seat to further process and evaluate my mental capacities, and I comply, quite eager to discover if there is a way for me to regain the more familial aspects of my memory. The evaluation is quite extensive, utilizing Pre-War techniques such as Rorschach's ink-blots, personality statement affiliations, etcetera, followed by a family-history trait identification test. I gave as much information as I could, ignoring the fact that the doctor made a crude remark about my non-comedic incident three days ago, and handed the sheet back to him. "Hmm... Extensive training with firearms of a wide range of calibers... You've pretty much proven your skill with technologies and repair... Experience in debate and deliberation methods..."
After the evaluation is complete, Doc Mitchell informs me that, aside from a possibility of (he stressed this for some reason)minor hallucinations while making my way to wherever I was going, it was practically impossible to tell that I had been shot in the head. He walked me to the door and handed me my possessions, at least the more important of my belongings, and told me that, if I intended to make the trek to New Vegas to search for the man responsible for placing me in a coma, I might want to get acquainted with surviving the Mojave, suggesting I contact a woman by the name of "Sunny Smiles" as she would likely be the best source of information on survival. He also mentioned that it would probably be a good idea to wear something before walking out into the open. I suddenly noticed I was down to my underwear, and the doctor handed me a blue jumpsuit with yellow or gold trim, which upon further inspection, had the number twenty-one in gold trim on the back. This meant most-likely that Doc Mitchell was once a Vault-Dweller, which explained where he could have obtained his extensive medical knowledge. I put on the jumpsuit, which adjusted perfectly to my body, and Doc Mitchell went to open the front door for me. "Good luck." The door is opened, and I am engulfed by the intense light of the Mojave sun as I step out onto the porch. Time for me to learn how to play the Mojave and hit the jackpot.