Philip's daily record (general gameplay story)
Daily record by Philip Kindred.
World gone crazy. That, or i did...
There was noone around when i woke up. But there was that... mutant, i guess. That, or old werewolf stories are true? It (he?) attacked. In a short hand-to-hand fight, i managed to strangle it to death. I just reacted instinctively, not even fully awake from my long freezing slumber. It feels that i am not skilled in any martial art or cold weapon combat, - even under adrenaline rush, my moves were not as precise as quick as i'd want them to be, given the situation. The creature cut my left leg a bit, below the knee, and bruised my hip before i managed to grab its neck from behind, at which point it had no chance to get out of my iron grasp.
Good thing my strength was not reduced by cryogenics - i can feel lots of strength in my muscles. Still, i think i was lucky to kill the thing while taking so little damage.
Then i went out of the cryogenic facility. Hoped to find someone. Outside i found only broken windows, rain, and it was DARN cold. Noone anywhere. There were few buildings south-west, so i went there. Again, not a soul. Inside those buildings, i found plastic bag, some dirty rags, a pair of blue jeans, large sleeping bag, dozen strings and ropes of good length, and some other junk.
Then i realized there may be more of those creatures lurking around, and so i need some weapon to deal with them, if need be. "Dogmen", this is how i'll call them. I thought about getting a gun somehow. That thought instantly made lots of information about target shooting to appear in my mind. Apparently, i am a skilled marksman, or something like that! Yet i don't have a gun now.
After couple minutes of thinking, i arrived to the only logical conclusion: right now i am my only gun, myself. Throwing rocks, given my strength, is not a useless option, and i can enhance the force by using a sling. So i quickly made one out of some rags and strings, picked up several dozens pebbles, and made some practicing throws. Several minutes later i was able to reliably hit a building's door with more force than i expected out of this crude sling. It's not a gun, but it would sure hurt anything it'd hit. May be even break a bone, especially if using larger stones.
Then i went back to Cryo facility - the dogman had some fur on him, and i don't like the idea of traveling far under chilling rain half-naked. I skinned the corpse. Then tied pieces of hide together, poking holes in them with a sharp glass shard. Rude fur coat, if i can call it that, was the result. Wearing it made me feel way much better, - hospital gown was the only thing on me when i woke up. With few little fur pieces remaining, also made a glove, but there wasn't enough to make another. After some doubts, i carved some meat from the carcass, too - if there are no people for miles, then who knows what's the situation with the food supply. Even with my slower than usual metabolism, i'll need to eat sooner or later to stay in shape. How exactly i know about my slow metabolism, though? That, i have no idea about...
Then i tried to find some clues within the facility. Found working terminal, with some data about people who were put to sleep, including myself. Also checked for tracks, and found some! Very strange tracks, unlike any tracks i have even seen. This is when i realized i have seen lots of them - apparently, i am much experienced in tracking. Well, this couldn't hurt, for sure. I also found rather hard to spot room, which i think can be great as a sleeping place.
With plastic bag packed to capacity and dogman-hide tunic warming me up, the idea to go somewhere else seemed reasonable. Past south-west buildings were open fields and hills, so i decided to pick some other direction. Visibility towards south and north-west was low, deep forests those directions, it seemed. Myopia at its best, too... To the east were wide open fields, as well as to the north. Going east, i'd face rising sun - it was mostly cloudy morning, but the rain stopped, and the sun was sending its blinding rays through breaks in clouds now and then. Well, at least the sun didn't go crazy and looked totally normal, good to see... I headed north.
Years of athletic training were not for nothing, i thought then. So, i am an athlete! And kind of marksman in the same time. Hm... Biathlonist, was i? But then why i know how to read tracks. May be i was serving in special armed forces at some point? But then i'd definitely know at lest few things about melee combat, yet i don't. I tried hard to remember who i was in the past - people, events, achievements - but nothing clear came up in my mind.
It felt good to walk towards chosen direction, after i went into a rhytm, even despite no shoes on my feet. After walking through couple acres of forest, something like half an hour later, a dog rushed towards me. Hungry one, by the looks of it. I spotted it only when it was rather close. Used the sling and killed it without mercy - ain't no walking dog's meal here.
Few more clicks of open field, and then a hill. I walked on top of it. Obvious sounds of distant human activity filled the air, and, soon, i walked to a sight of many buildings further north. I thought i'd be glad to meet anybody, but seeing lots of ruins to the north and north-west and lots of plant growth along the streets, caution suddenly kicked in. This is when i finally understood that civilization as i knew it is definitely dead. So, i decided to go around, checking outskirts of the town, see if i can find some clues or get a peek on what is happening there before going well in.
Another dog ran towards me when i was going downhill, with upper lip lifted and teeth all open to see. This time i spent less pebbles, hitting dog's forehead with one. Finished it with few more pebbles and went on to outer parts of seemingly dying town. Scouted through more than a dozen of buildings, some practically intact, others badly damaged, looking for anything of use. Found a boot and a shoe - going around barefoot was getting uncomfortable to say the least, given all the concrete around. Then found one really useful thing - a cigarette lighter. Working cigarette lighter, and half-full with gas! When i was looking for a place to make a fire to fry that dogman meat - don't want it spoil sooner than i'd get hungry - someone walked by.
Initially the guy didn't notice me, despite appearing just several steps away, from behind a corner, and stopping for a moment. He didn't look friendly. I sneaked away bit by bit, but then the guy finally noticed my presense. I then tried to talk with him. He did not reply; instead, he took cover and started to move towards me, staying in cover as much as possible. Spear in hand, with a grim face. I then sprinted away in two quick bursts, building distance. The guy kept moving to me. Are people so uncivilized here they turned to spear-wielding primitive-language tribe men? Anyhow, i offered to talk, he did not respond a word, and was following me with a weapon in hand. So i started with my sling. Very 1st throw of 3 pebbles had two pebbles hitting his head, and one of them - breaking through his skull, probably sharp edgeded one cutting through... The guy died in an instant.
So much for "friendly meeting" with "intelligent life"... But i was sure glad that at least it wasn't me ending up dead as a result of "1st contact" between people from different times.
Made a fire and roasted some dogman meat. Still didn't feel hungry, so put it back into plastic bag. Smelled good. Boiled some water, then boiled a rag, washed the cut on my leg and bandaged it. Read a couple old newspapers i found in nearby ruin. Detroit Mega City? Things were really bad for authorities to build a wall around whole Detroit... I wonder, are there any authorities left, by now.
Half a dozen buildings later, when i was going through another ruin of what looked like appartment building, its roof collapsed on me. I was very careful not to disturb the building, and used the lighter to see where i'm going, but it didn't prevent the collapse. Bruises, two significant cuts and lots of pain was the result. I didn't have anything to wash or disinfect those cuts with, but thankfully i found first aid kit with 6 proper bandages in one of previous buildings, so i used two of those to stop the bleeding. With the hope the pain will go away, i continued to search outskirts of the town for anything useful.
Less than an hour after that, two men ambushed me. Fortunately, there was still some little distance when i spotted them - barely enough to have time to sprint away from them. Then they gave chase, but failed to get close even despite me tripping once. So i built some distance and started to hurl pebbles at them. One was badly hurt after few throws, visibly bleeding - he retreated. I then switched to hit the other. Few throws crippled his leg and made wounds all over his body, and then he spoke to me! Begged for his life. And i let him go. In his state, he won't be a threat to me for a long time, and may be his friends will learn a lesson - or even two: 1st, it's bad idea to ambush Philip Kindred, and 2nd, i am reasonable person and am not hostile to them, unless they behave in a hostile way themselves. Besides, the 1st guy - one who ran away - would tell his friends about me, if those two were not alone, so there was no big point to silence the 2nd guy, anyway.
That fight was intense, and i felt tired after it. Cuts and bruises from collapsed roof were still painful enough to slow me down. Still, i went on with more looting.
Almost two hours later - another ambush. Another man, wielding a flashlight of all things, jumped on me from nearby building entrance. And once again, it was barely enough distance between us two, initially, for me to be able to run away from him without being hit. He chased, running as fast as he could, but i was faster. This guy was different than earlier enemies. He looked much like them, but his will to catch me was fanatical. He survived more than dozen pebble hits, after which he was bleeding much and coughing out blood. I then demanded his surrender - he did not respond, charging towards me instead, covered in his own blood. I finished him off - what other choice i had? This world definitely went crazy...
Roasted dogman meat chunk and some blue berries which i ate - tasted just alright, though. Open air effect, of course, but still - yummy!
In one of nearby buildings, i found a map. And i found the area i was in, on it - the irregular shape of the town, outskirts of which i was combing, was difficult to miss. It's southern Michigan alright. Detroit is several dozens kilometers south-east. I probably need to go and see if there is any civilization left there - but surely not today, and not tomorrow. I want to get back to the town up north and see if i can find something better than plastic bags to carry my things. Dozens of buildings i searched through today - did not provide anything of the sort, and both of my plastic bags are full or nearly full - all the time.
After few more buildings searched, with the Sun getting low behind now rather thick clouds, i ran away from the town - back south, to the cryogenic facility. I left the sleeping bag there, and did not find another. Plus the idea of sleeping in ruins with those agressive men lurking around - was not the most appealing one. I spotted some tall buildings to the north-west from the facility on my way - somehow i didn't spot them at dawn. Going to check those tomorrow.
Running made me weary, but i still managed to hide my tracks before getting close to the cryogenic facility. There was a dog near cryogenic facility itself - i didn't see it when i went close to facility, initially, but i heard it. Then i saw it. I looked frail, vulnerable, feral and sick. Half a dozen thrown pebbles ended the dog's problems for good.
Using remains of dogman fur and more fur cut from the new dog corpse, i made another fur glove. Then i set up small fire and roasted some more chunks of meat, hid my tracks again, and went down to that hard-to-spot room i found in the morning.
And so there i am, sitting in dark "Exam Room 17", writing this down on bits of paper, burning some dried twigs for light, with an old pencil found in ruins of once beautiful american town. Very tired and still in significant pain from cuts and bruises i suffered today, - but very happy! I guess nothing makes a man more happy than living a day against many odds, eh. This world may be crazy, but i feel that there is a place for me, under the sun. I won't give up! Now that's one thought i'm OK to go to sleep with.
Hopefully, i will wake up in one piece.
P.S. -ooc- picture of the day: a dog who died twice. Hey, cats have 9 lives - who said dogs can't have two! :)
... our lifestyles, mores, institutions, patterns of interaction, values, and expectations are shaped by a cultural heritage that was formed in a time when carrying capacity exceeded the human load. (c) William R. Catton, Jr