Chapter I · Chapter II · Chapter III · Chapter IV · Chapter V · Chapter VI · Chapter VII · Chapter VIII

The raiders and Enclave were doing business together. What’s next? It might as well rain mole rats.

I plan to follow them, see where and when they are going to meet the Enclave to hand over their captives, who I had still not seen.

After some more talking, two raiders of the group head to the other side of the truck.

One of them yells, “Get up! We’re moving again. You, you better not misbehave or you know what’s going to happen.”

Pff, so there were the captives.

They all start walking again, the captives at gunpoint by the raiders. They continue on the street for awhile before turning at another intersection.

I manage to keep up with them, snaking through the rubble alongside the street, careful to make as little noise as possible.

When I got a decent view of the captives, I notice there are six of them – four females and two males.

Too bad all the females are around my age. One of them had to be Jill, although I’m not sure which...

After a few eternities they reached the harbour and stopped there.

Some time passes before I hear the distinctive sound of an ugly-ass Vertibird cutting through the quiet Boston air.

Everyone, including myself, looks up at it. I’ve never seen one so close in the air without it being shot at. The Institute guys had anti-aircraft guns all over the city, so eventually the Vertibirds stopped flying over Boston. This must be one of the uncovered areas, or the Enclave was taking the risk.

Suddenly, a thought erupts in my head: Shit. They’re taking the captives.

Once she gets on that Vertibird I’ll really never see her again.

At this time, the two male captives decide to act.

They attacked one raider each, but one of them drew his pistol so quickly it was as if he expected it…

One of the male captives goes down.

The other male captive tackled the other raider to the ground, where they being to struggle over the raider’s gun briefly, before the other raider shoots this captive too.

Well, that didn’t last too long.

But now I needed to act.

I knew those guys. They fought and were killed.

Their names were Will and Tony, and I knew them, and even spoke to them a little. Right when they began to move a part of me wanted to help. I wanted to attack those raiders, but I couldn’t. I was unable to.

Never again.

And now hear comes the Vertibird. And out from it comes the Enclave officer.

I recognised the uniform from all the anti-Enclave posters around the city, put up by the Institute. It was all grey and quite bland, but held authority in its fibres.

He begins to speak, “Good day, gentlemen. I see you have brought the goods in relatively good condition. Don’t worry about the males, we didn’t need them anyway.”

The temperature of my blood began to rise. Goods? ‘We didn’t need them anyway?’

One of the raiders speak up, “Alright, whatever. Just give us the caps and we’ll both be on our way.”

“Right down to business I see,” the officer replies, “Very well then.”

He motions to the pilot, who carries out a large suitcase with the unmistakeable clatter of bottle caps inside.

“3,000 caps, just as we discussed.”

One of the raiders steps forward to take the suitcase. He opens it, and witnesses what’s almost certainly the greatest amount of money he’d ever seen in his life. He shows it to his partner, who nods.

“Looks good,” the raider with the suitcase says, and then motions to us, “Well, they’re all yours. Where are you taking them anyway?”

“Syracuse,” the officer replies, “and if that’ll be all, we will start loading the goods and be on our way. It’s been a pleasure doing business with you.”

The raiders without another word turn around and begin to walk back, when the officer draws his plasma pistol and shoots both in the back of the head. Then he walks over and retrieves the suitcase.

I tried to move in closer. The Enclave officer and raiders were engaged in conversation. I hide behind some rubble within hearing distance. Thankfully all this debris lying around has provided enough cover to even get this close.

I am still, so I can catch bits of their conversation. “3,000… discussed… Looks good… Where are you taking… Syracuse… Please doing business…”

Before I peek up from behind my cover, I hear shots. Not from any gun, but a plasma weapon. My father and I a long time ago had found one with some spare ammunition, and we used it to defend against a pack of dogs that very night.

Then I peek over and I see the two raiders on the ground, dead. The Enclave officer is holstering his plasma pistol and walks over and picks up the suitcase.

He then turns to the captives, “Everyone, get on the Vertibird. Now.”

They began to board.

There was nothing I could do.

Before one of the remaining captives climbs into the Vertibird, she turns back and looks right in my direction. It was almost as if she knew I was here…

He picks up the suitcase and tells everyone to get in the Vertibird.

With any hesitation, the others climb in. I’m last to get on, and before I go, I take one more glimpse of the city. The city I was raised in, where the place closest to what I’d call home was located.

There was this weird feeling, like someone was watching all of us…

Frustrated with myself, I sit against the remains of a wall, defeated.

I hate that feeling – being powerless, unable to do shit.

There was really no other purpose my life serves. I live by no one, for no one. No one depends on me, no one cares about me.

Except her.

I had to find her.

I try desperately to recall some details of the conversation… “3,000… discussed… looks good… Syracuse.”

What the fuck is Syracuse?

Without another moment wasted I begin running back into the city, back to the Institution. They’re the only ones who can help me now.