Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Koreshi Chronicles - Chapter VIII: Character Traits

“It's hard being a son of a bitch. But it's harder still to be a nice guy. Better not to care, better to mind your own damned business and stay out of the way of others and make damned sure they stay outta yours. That's the world we live in, that's the world the Earth made when they abandoned Terra Nova, that's the reality set in by the bickering city-states and warring polar forces. Being stubborn, unwelcoming, and generally unpleasant is how the Badlands have stayed in the hands of regular folk. Folk who have, by circumstances and by choice, become tough sons of bitches.

“Then the Earth came back. And like a drunk father who leaves you scarred and bitter when he abandons you, it's worse when the violent thug comes home and knocks you around again. The Badlands got knocked around for damn sure during the war. So, tough and ornery sons of bitches get worse, get vengeful and callous. That's what happened here.”

Ennick listened to the man whose red nose and trembling hands would identify him in any circumstances, though those clues weren't necessary when he was slurring his speech and spilling his drink at ten in the morning.

Ennick didn't judge. He had no right. He'd been in that place more times than he could remember and he knew that he was just one moment of weakness from stumbling back there once more.

He listened patiently, something he had had to learn to do. He didn't need the history lesson or the folksy sociology, he knew where this was leading. Every town affected by the war had a story to tell about the revenge killings that happened in its wake. Collaborators were quickly and often viciously dealt with. Again, Ennick had no right to judge others. The man he had killed was a collaborator, but he has also been used, just as Ennick had.

In the last two cycles he had been investigating the other pawns the Bear used to play his game. What his end goal was didn't factor in; Ennick would leave that to others to figure out like the Doc, Grey Cub, or Ti. But Ennick could figure out where the pieces were on the board.

Everybody he found got him one step closer to finding the queen. Recently, he had found some rooks. This gave him precious information that needed to be shared in person with one of Ti's Lelland Kin. He was waiting for a contact to come through these parts when he got the call.

“Well hello, Doc, I was waiting for your call.”

Ennick was one of those tough and stubborn sons of bitches the old timer had talked about. He wasn’t easily shocked and he wasn’t easily surprised. But there were a couple of people out there that still caught him off guard and they were both as tough and stubborn as any Badlander could be. On behalf of one, he was about to meet up with the other.

Heavy Gear Roleplaying Game


Hermes 72 - Heavy Gear RPG - Most artwork Copyright 2002 Dream Pod 9, Inc.