WIP: So my brain wanted to do some Fallout fanfic...
|I laid flat on the ground and peeked over the edge of the crumbling concrete surface. I could see the raiders below, their voices floating up to me as they laughed and called out to each other. They kicked my meagre belongings around the campsite, picking through everything. I always tried to carry my food and water with me in my backpack; which was now sitting next to me on the cool concrete surface. There were five of the raiders scavenging through my campsite. I decided that even from my vantage point, it was too many to try and take on myself. I prayed that they wouldn’t find the access point to where I was hiding. I had made sure to keep the foliage in place that was covering the way up, for this very reason, my safety. Raiders could be very unpredictable and dangerous.
I was pressed against the rough surface of an old crumbling overpass, a lot of it had collapsed but some sections still stood, towering over the wildlife that was reclaiming the area around it. I was currently hiding on top of a tall concrete pillar that would have held up a section of the overpass. Parts of it had crumbled away revealing the metal structure underneath and the section of road remaining on the top of the pillar formed a lopsided pentagram shape. One side had completely fallen away and detached from the pillar but the other side was still hanging by the wire mesh grid. This pillar was a solitary one, not connecting with the others around it. The ones in this area were all heavily damaged or turned to rubble, but further along others were in better shape, remaining upright and even connected in places.
“Oi, Daz, there’s shit all here, the fucker is probably dead.” The others laughed in response, I let out a sigh of relief, with that comment they would be moving on soon, and then I could climb back down and gather my things. Hopefully with them thinking the campsite is abandoned they won’t come back this way for a while. I purposely didn’t have my campfire on top of the pillar as the flames would be like a beacon to everyone who saw it. I really didn’t want to draw the attention of those whose intentions were to harm and pillage. It was sometimes hard to tell the survivors from the raiders. In these desperate times even a survivor could turn on you if you pissed them off enough. There were a few places that you could visit without fear of being killed, usually heavily guarded with tall, strong walls surrounding the settlement.
I watched the five raiders gather together, discussing where they were headed to next. I didn’t care, as long as they left me alone. One of them kicked a can; it bounced off the pillar and then settled on the ground. I had just made it up the pillar before they came trampling through my camp. I had heard them coming. The pillar and still attached part of the road amplified the echoes, making getting away and hiding much easier. If they had been quietly stalking through the wilderness then I, more than likely, would not have heard them. Being in the group of five meant that they were being loud and rambunctious as they trekked through the wilderness, seemingly announcing themselves to others in the wasteland. Raiders often saw themselves as untouchable or invincible so they saw little reason to be quiet or stealthy.
On occasion that way of thinking could get them in trouble and other times it could work to their advantage. They never approached the settlements in groups as they were more likely to be fired upon or denied entry as they would be seen as hostiles. The best way to approach a settlement was with your weapon holstered or down by your side, if you couldn’t put it away. The wasteland creatures rarely ventured close to settlements so there was little chance of being attacked by anything other than the raiders, or settlers themselves. As long as you had some caps to spend you were always welcome to enter the settlement, some were larger and had more to offer like medical help and supplies, shops, hotels, and cafes while others were smaller or more family based; happy to offer you a meal or a place to sleep for the night. As long as you didn’t skip out on your bill you were always welcomed back.
The raiders finally started to walk away. They had completely trashed my camp, and had pocketed some of my belongings. I would have to wait till they were out of sight before I could go down to assess the damage and loss, but this was why I kept food, water, caps, and anything else of importance in my backpack which came with me wherever I went. I listened as one of the raiders sung loudly along with a song that played on one of the few radio stations; he must have been carrying a portable radio. I liked to tune into one of the stations, the host was funny and tried to keep the mood light, considering what the world was like these days, I appreciated it; it helped keep the monotony of the situation fresher at times and made me feel less alone in the world.