Holotape Entry 3:
Date: August 19, 2279
Finally I find other people...yet their situation has made apparent the harsh world this moral-less wasteland provides. The day started out slow, with me and Dioje leaving our freeway refuge towards what looked like a desolate are of ruined office buildings. I figured I could find some salvage or some real food in such a big mess of rubble and re-bar. A while of flipping over large pieces of rubble and searching through dumpsters left me with nothing to show for my efforts. As I rounded the most intact building I heard a gun cock and a women yelling. I grabbed my gun out of its holder and jumped behind the closest barrier.
"You there! Keep your hands where I can see them!" the women yelled as she thrusted her assault rifle forward to emphasise the threat. She looked to be about middle-age with a rough look about her. I guess that's what I should expect to see from anyone surviving in this world though.
"Alright! Don't shoot!" I yelled back, quite unheroic. I placed my pistol down slowly and kept my hands up, waiting for her reaction.
"What the hell are you doing out here?" She seemed to calm down, though her weapon wasn't removed from its position.
"My name is....Devs....and I'm looking for a place to rest and get my barrings. You see my squad was on a mis...." I was cut off.
"I don't give a crap. Hannibal says we HAVE to let your types in. Just come in and don't even think of trying anything funny!" She lowered her assault rifle at this point and went out of view.
I picked my pistol up from the group and gave Dioje a reassuring pat on the head, for he seemed tense through the whole thing. Truth is so was I.....never had a gun point at me before. I looked around before heading to the closest gate, apparently the entrance to this hostile building. As I got closer the women came back into view and unlocked the gate, sliding it slowly.
"Name's Simone, now go talk to Hannibal." she said gruffly and without emotion. As if she had given this speech a thousand times already.
I was cut off before I had the chance to ask any other questions. She motion to the stairs and I slowly followed her command. The building was dilapidated and a complete mess. Dumpsters were placed around and desks seemed to be laying anywhere they fell. I figured this place must have been an old office building, but a worn sign that read 'Temple of Union' had me wondering otherwise. The second I went above the stairs, I found the area a lot more pleasant. People were chatting and working, tables set up and things were set around neatly. Apparently the main living quarters, I almost cried at the sight of some civilization. I got closer to the group, stunned with joy, as they all became silent and looked at me. A man with a rough beard grabbed me and pulled me aside from the group before I could say anything. He explained he was Hannibal and that the people here were all escaped slaves. He made me promise him an oath to never rat them out to slavers. I quickly pledged, for slavery is one of the most horrid crimes I could think of.
"I would love to have you around, but we don't have the room. You are welcome to stay the night, but any further would cause a problem. If only we could make it to the Lincoln memorial!" he gave a deep sigh and looked me up and down. I glanced around wondering what he was getting at. I decided to try my luck.
"Yes! The resting place of The Great Emancipator! We could easily fend off slavers from there and keep plenty of people but...."
I would like to point out that at this point I could guess what he meant and that I had already been thinking it through. Truthfully I really don't want to risk myself, but it seemed in my best interest to help these people.
"....and then there's the super mutants! I just need someone....someone like you to go in and make it safe! We could then move down there and have a real safe haven for escaped slaves! You would be doing something for freedom!" He went on as I slowly drifted off.
President Eden always said the Enclave's duty was to ensure freedom and democracy, but the task seemed out of my league by an infathomable mile. If I remember my geography correctly, the Lincoln Memorial was deep in DC. Could I really make my way into a deeply contested area, clear out an entire area, and then make it back in time for the slaves to get there safely? It seemed a noble goal, but an impractical one. I told Hannibal I would think about it and that ended it.
After our talk, I walked over to a fire-pit everyone was crowded around and sat down with the group. I don't even remember saying anything to be truthful...it was just so fulfilling to hear other people talk, joke, and just plain socialize. Dioje was a valiant companion, but his lack of speech made for long periods of silence. Our of the group I found one to be the stand-out of the group. Her name was Alejandra and her beauty only matched her intelligence. I first saw her arguing with that animal Simone about violence. She used the phrase, "the pen is mightier then the sword" which had been one of my favorites. She replaced sword with assault rifle though, which made me laugh for the first time since I was back in my lab. And the rest of the night was spent like that, jokes to help me forget my situation.
The others consisted of: Bill the janitor and cook, Four Score the dog that looks a bit like Dioje, and Caleb the faithful yet illiterate guard. I offered to teach Caleb the art of reading and literature, but he turned me down saying Alejandra was already helping him. She is so considerate of others! I chatted with Bill for a bit and quite honestly he is a stereotypical old man. Or at least what I have read from pre-war books. Almost all of the Enclave don't live long enough to become old. I always prayed I would be the odd exception, yet i volunteered for my mission. Ironic in a way, but sad in another. Dioje and Four Score seemed to hit it off and they ran around, happy for some brotherly company. I wonder why they named it Four Score? I'll have to remember to ask sometime.
Slowly I became attached to this group, but the idea of such a risk to get them a safer home still bothered me. As much as I wanted to help these people....especially Alejandra...I don't have faith in my abilities to. I'm a scientist, not a warrior! I'll sleep on it and make me decision tomorrow, for now Bill made me something on a stick. I'm guessing it was a small animal, but meat is meat and I quickly devoured the thing. It's getting late and I have to sleep on an old mattress, but trying to sleep now with my decision is proving quite difficult. I figured making a holotape record would make my tired like it always has, but tonight there is to much to think about. Signing off for now, this is Devs, the most conflicted man in the world.