Saturday, June 30, 2018

Finding a New Home: Life and Death in the Wastes (2.5 of 3)

The Lt figured that they could make about 8 miles per day, and figured that they had 1-2 additional days before HQ would conduct a search outside the bunker.  With any luck they would be 40 miles or more south, before anyone came looking.

As it turned out, the team had put 60 miles between them and the bunker, before the extraction team headed off in the wrong direction to look for the Lt's team.  The team had left some confusing remnants behind before heading south, just to make the puzzle more fun for the extraction jokers.

The team had about  two week's worth of supplies, and had already begun supplementing them by foraging off of the land.  Additionally, they had old maps and had done additional research about survival in the Before, prior to going on the mission.

The team had now traveled eight days without incident, knowing that sooner or later, some excitement would find them.  In the mean time, they just took in all that they could and marveled at how much they had missed, living in the complex.

A view of the countryside.

And from the other side of the table, the team can just be made out, strung out 
along the lower center of the photo, South is to the right in this case.

As they followed a small stream south through a shallow canyon, they happened into a band of feral warriors.  The Lt speculated that they were either mutants or some sort of genetically engineered survivors, given their size and the oddness of their features.  They also covered themselves in green paint, which seemed to make little sense in a yellow and brown wasteland.

Spooky in the lead, spots something...

… big green somethings!

As near as they could tell, the team hadn't been detected, and after a brief talk, they simply decided to backtrack a ways, find a way out of the canyon, and just go around the green behemoths.

Shortly after they turned around, they ran into a second group of the green guys coming from the north.  This group could not be evaded, and upon being spotted, the green guys opened fire on them.

Surprise!  More green things.

The scene was very chaotic, as neither side had been expecting a fight, and both forces were awkwardly strung out at the time of contact.  The green warriors were particularly savage in their manner, and reveled in battle.  They alternatively yelled, chanted and sang, during the fight, and seemed to almost enjoy the wounds that they received, rather than being impaired by them.

It rapidly became clear that these things were not human.  they didn't really bleed much from their wounds, and would only stop fighting after receiving massive traumatic torso or head wounds. Gunshots, and even loss of a limb, seemed to only irritate them at the most.

The battle progressed as follows:

Lt. Rogers saw Spooky just ahead, suddenly drop to a knee and begin shooting, but the target was out of the Lt's field a view.   A second later, a 7 foot tall green heap of angry leveled a gun at the Lt.  Rogers, Spooky, and someone behind him all fired simultaneously, at point blank range, hitting and dropping the green thing.  

Instantly more green things appeared, from around both sides of a large rock.  To the Lt's right, Joe blasted one of them, probably the leader, with his plasma gun, turning it into a flaming inferno of rage, which continued its charge.  Spooky took a hit just in front of the LT, more shots hit the inferno to the right, and it fell down, struggling to crawl toward the team.

A small green thing took a hit and squealed, running back towards where it appeared from. Shots rang out from all around, and it was a miracle that the team wasn't shooting its own.  

More of the big ones appeared, with two of them dropping instantly, one after receiving a head shot.  Rinkman took a hit from a monster shotgun, and went to the ground.    A couple more of the big guys advanced, taking hits.   The plasma gun took out one, and then Tinker took a hit, but got back up and returned fire.

At around this time, Rinkman, laying on the ground, bleeding and in agony, screamed out that their are more to the team's rear,  Chucker and the LT both turned and fired at the nearest target, both hitting it, and watching as it shrugged off two strings of holes in its body, and kept coming, firing wildly.

Someone, maybe Obradavich, dropped the last of the green guys to the north.  Spooky took another hit, but not bad.  Chucker, the Lt, and Joe all fired, most shots hitting at such close range. A green thing fell, another was up in flames, but sort of still coming.  Tinker tried to carry Rinkman away.

Shots were fired in a continuous frenzy, the plasma gun overheated, and Joe took a hit, two more green things dropped, then a huge green thing with a giant machinegun came out of the stream and fired a burst at Obradovich, almost cutting him in two, and killing him instantly.  

Joe got the Plasma gun back to life, and it cooked the big dude with the MG, before he took apart the rest of the team. A volley of shots hit the Lt, Chucker and Cummings, and it started to look really bad.  Everyone in the team had at least a minor wound.  

The Lt ended another green thing, while Joe took another hit and fell; Chucker  immediately picked up Joe and tossed a grenade with a couple more greenies falling.

The last few green things advanced, as the Lt took another hit and went down.  Tinker showed back up seconds later, having handed Rinkman off to Spooky, and pulled the Lt out of the fray.  Cummings, already hit, covered the retreat, firing like a madman.  The last two green things closed on Cummings, who took another hit,  when Spooky fired from on top of the canyon wall, killing one of the green things with a head shot.  But Cummings missed the other shot, and was hit fatally, before Spooky could fire again.

In an instant the shooting stopped, Sgt Cummins was dead.  And Spooky was overcome with anguish.  A half second quicker and Cummings would still be alive. Tinker and Chucker sat with their wounded comrades for a moment, tending the wounds as best they could, and let Spooky regroup.  The shooting had ended, but ore green things could show up.  

The team had lost two of their number, and had three members wounded badly enough, that they needed help to move.  The team found a secluded spot amongst the cliffs, and tinker went to work, a little more seriously now, on everybody's wounds.

They would all live, at least for awhile, but the team was suddenly a lot less mobile.  They would need a couple of days rest, before pushing on.

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Finding a New Home: The Escape (2 of 3)

The mission involved finding an entrance to an abandoned research bunker located southwest of the complex, make contact with any squatters, and identify materials to be recovered.  The team will be extracted five days after insertion.

In the past the team would have had its own wheels, but things had changed since that day with captain Martell.  The team would be delivered to the target area, left on their own to complete the mission, and then picked up.  To keep track of things, the team would report to HQ each evening.

After drop-off, they performed a quick recon of the area, then proceeded to try to locate the bunker entrance.  The secondary entrance consisted of a single man sized door in a recessed concrete entryway, a sort of escape hatch for the bunker. 

The team enters from the top right of the photo, 
the bunker hatch is near the center of the table.

The team decided to operate per the mission requirements for the first day, locate the hatch, check in as directed, etc.  They had some concern that they might be watched by HQ, and wanted time to determine if this was so.  As the team neared the likely location of the bunker entrance, they heard voices in the distance.  The Lt saw the gang members near the entrance just as he cleared a rocky intrusion from the valley floor, waving the team into position immediately.

A gang sighted in the distance.

The team advanced briefly, with the intention of gaining a tactical advantage and them giving the gang opportunity to surrender, but it wasn't to be.  A gang member sighted them as they moved, and fired immediately.

Shots are fired as the team tries to spread out.

With the team's two snipers, plasma gun, and advanced body armor, the gang was at a distinct disadvantage, in an eight on eight match-up.  Upon the ganger firing the first shot, Spookie, one of the snipers, hit the ganger square in the chest and dropped him.  The gang leader hit the Lt with a pistol round that didn't penetrate his armor.  Both sides moved into better positions.

Using a periscope to check Spooky's line of sight.

Obradovich, moving to the Team's left flank, took a minor hit, but continued to fight.  A ganger near the hatch took two hits from Spookie and Rinkman and collapsed.  Fire was exchanged with Obradovich hitting another ganger, while taking another minor wound, any further wound would put him out of action.

The team advances, exchanging shots with the gang.

The team continued to advance, while a couple of gang members tried to move to the team's right.  the gang leader took a hit, which seemed to just make him angry.  He was armed with two pistols, which got a freak long range hit for no effect on the Lt's armor.

The gang leader.

Shots continued to be exchanged, with the gang leader taking two more hits from Spookie and the Lt, and went down.  The ganger at the team's extreme right also took two hits and collapsed.

A view from the gang's perspective.

At this point, the remaining gang members were feeling a little lonely and started to run.  The Lt halted fire, and the team advanced on the hatch.  Spookie, the Lt, and Flamin' Joe (with his plasma gun) got into position, the outer hatch already unlocked, was opened, only to find an empty chamber.  The inner hatch was still sealed, and entry into the bunker was not immediately achieved.

The team continuing to advance, 
several gangers have been hit by this point.

Tinker, who served as both medic and mechanic to the team,  tended to Obradovich's wounds, while the gang's leftovers were investigated.  Each of the team members tended to their own needs, and at the directed time, Lt checked in with HQ, updating them about the firefight, and the status of the outer an inner bunker hatches.  Lt informed HQ that the team would attempt to breach the inner hatch in the morning.

The team opening the outer hatch.

That evening, Tinker managed to open the inner hatch, which  was located at the top of ladder recessed into the floor.  There was a long drop, maybe 50 feet, and a God-awful smell.  The power grid in the bunker appeared to down, and no further investigation was made. 

Tinker and the Lt inspecting the inner hatch.

The team arranged their watches for the night, keeping check on the outside world, and the doorway to the one below them.  During the Lt's watch, he noted how clear the night sky was, and marveled at the multitude of stars.  He loved the night sky; something seen by so few in the complex.  His heavenly companions would watch the wastes with him for the next two hours, and then he would sleep.

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Finding a New Home: The Meeting (1 of 3)

This post introduces what I expect to be a new faction in my post apocalyptic world.  Assuming they don't get killed off early, two or three more stories should follow along shortly, and then we will revisit them from time to time.


Lt. Rogers switched the audio jammer on, and turned, looking at the group of men that he had called together.  These men, huddled together in his cramped quarters were all good men; they did their jobs well, and were dedicated to their cause.

All of them also had expertise in the wastes; at least, more than most living in the Colorado Region Federal Defense Complex (the CRFDC or "complex' as most referred to it).  This made them unique in that they had a broader perspective of the of the post apocalyptic world outside, broader than that of  their own leadership, most of whom, hadn't ever stepped outside the hatch. 

Life was actually pretty good in the complex, probably better than almost anywhere else in the world at the moment.  They had, or could make almost anything that they might need.  Fusion reactors yielded endless power; technology, in some cases, was actually more advanced than it had been in the Before. Their single shortcoming had manifested only in recent years, as they consumed available resources.  Despite extensive recycling, they had been forced to start "recovering" resources from outside the hatch.

The problem was something a mixed blessing, in that it committed the complex to finally start reclaiming and re-establishing the nation.  They established allies, mostly impoverished villages that happily submitted  to the complex for the aid that was offered.

Those who resisted were destroyed, hopelessly out-gunned by the highly effective weapons wielded by the CRFDC forces.  To this point, the only thing limiting the CRFDC influence was the small population inside the complex that provided manpower to their forces.

Officially, the mission was to re-establish the nation through the reclamation of territory and the liberation of the survivors in the wasteland, through unifying wellfare and technology.  Unfortunately the cause quickly became more … imperial in practice, than did the mission statement.  Likewise, the CRFDC leadership had become less tolerant, less accessible, and more demanding as "progress" was made.

That was the reason that these men crowded into the little compartment this night.  Just as had the Lt, each of them had at some point, hinted at their reservation about how the leadership was choosing to progress, about the validity and integrity of execution of some of their recent missions.

The Lt surveyed the collection of tough looking men,  and greeted them, " Gentlemen, thank you for coming here tonight.  I have something that I need to share with you..."  And he proceeded to share his own hint of reservation, and the circumstances that it had brought about between he and Captain Martell (who by the way, had never been outside the hatch).

The Lt then shared his desire to leave the complex to forge his way in the wastes, and his willingness to forego the comfort and security of the complex, such that he might be true to himself.  And... if he was right about those that he had invited, all would join him for this new expedition.

Only Sergeant Wallace seem particularly conflicted about the proposition, but he was the youngest and least experienced, and after some discussion, it was agreed that the Lt's feeling was shared.  CRFDC leadership had lost its way.  More discussion resulted in a plan; they simply had to wait for the right time.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

A Few New Wanderers of the Wastes

Here are a few of the figs that I recently struggled to paint, the first is a fig from Moonraker, the second I believe is from Hasslefree, and the rest are Gaunt's Ghosts from GW.

I painted these up to form part of a faction for my "After" post-apoc storyline.  The last five of them were purposefully painted in subdued uniform bits that make them truly unremarkable to look at, but will set them apart on the table, and make them not too obvious as well hiding in the terrain.

With any luck, they will show up soon in a game or two, as I'm just about done with a terrain piece that will let me finally play a game.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Slow Progress on the Painting Front

Well, my Christmas wave of mojo finally ran out.  I loaded up my painting table five weeks ago, with expectations of a painting frenzy, and in all that time have painted only 13 miniatures.

A bunch of game scenarios that I want to play await one bit or another to be finished before they can be played, but just can't work up the juice to get much done.

I have been doing a bit of reading, re-visiting some of Drake's Hammers Slammers stuff, cruised through "Fighting for the French Foreign Leagion" by Alex lochrie ( a great read by the way), and continuing (of all things) my 40k adventure with the Horus Heresy series. Quite the departure from my usual peace loving sci-do fare from Arthur C. Clarke and whatnot

Anyway, Horus heresy; I sort of got bogged down in the first half of "Fulgrim", but otherwise have quite enjoyed it thus far.  I've always struggled with the pageantry of 40K, and the way it manifested in the game, but the books have actually helped reduce my struggle a little.  I could do with a little less repetition of the magnificence of the space marines every bloody time one of them walks into the room though.

I even considered jumping back into 40k briefly, despite not having played since the days of Rogue Trader. After a bit of digging, I considered painting up some salamanders ( I had s great idea for a paint scheme where the flames world have broken up the green into a scale pattern on parts of the armor), but found that my force would cost upwards of $4500 and kind of scrapped that idea.

Would have been nice to be able to game at the local shop, but then again, I could buy almost none of it through the shop, and that doesn't seem right to me.

I've also been researching for a WWII Barbarossa campaign with some focus on and around Smolensk, but trying to find detailed maps for tactical games has been a pain.  Maybe for the time being, I should just stick to 1940 France; I've got lots of maps for that.

So that's what I've been spinning my wheels on lately, instead of painting.  Hope you've had a little more mojo than I have.  I'll try to get some pics of something interesting up soon.

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Military and History Books for Sale

It has gotten to the point where I can't function again in my book room, so I am selling off some books to make room (for more books, no doubt).  I've created a google web page listing books by historical period with photos.  Historical subjects vary, but this batch has a fair number of modern, WWII, and ACW titles among others.

The page is located at:

irishserb's Books for Sale

Please-mail me at to order and ask any questions that you might have.  For those who might have to pay overseas shipping, I am located in the US.