Last night didn't do my ribs too many favors. In fact, it did the exact opposite.
I hate this town.
I don't remember much of anything after the window stunt, but Serena, my new horse, headbutts me awake. I jerk myself up while holding my already pounding head. I'm in a barn apparently, with a note on my chest.
"Your horse dragged you here. She seemed pretty protective of you, so we left you with some painkillers and left. Give us all call when you're up! -Sera"
"You could've taken me to the hospital ya know," I say to Serena.
Serena angrily neighs at me.
"I know I know. Thank you, I'll give you two apples today."
A pleading whinny escapes Serena's mouth.
"Fine, three. Can't say no to you." I pet her. She seems happy.
"Ok, I gotta go to work now, ok?" I whisper to her. I shag the three apples from my bag and give them to Serena. She eats them happily as I leave, popping a painkiller to ease the slight pain in my ribs.
Serena is an Akhal-Teke. Her dark golden shine is a great appeal to most. We've only met for about a few days, but I like her. She seems to feel the same. Must've been hell back at those raider camps. I've seen the scars across her body.
It's another hot day in Nevada, not too surprised. I wonder, when is it gonna rain? Who knows? walk over to the Miller Corps area of town. It seems to be dirty like the people purposely litter here. Guards are also high-string since they aimed guns at me as soon as I was in sight. I flashed the courier's bag and they started yelling. "Who's the mail for, Courier?"
"Major Kyle Tann. From his lover," Is all I say. One of them walks into the tent. After a few moments. He walks out of the tent giving the all-clear signal. I then walk into the said tent, seeing Major Kyle Tann for the first time. Tann was younger than most, maybe in his mid-to-late 20s. He was leaning on a table, back to me, looking at a map of the local area. "Dopeman. Aka, Foolish Courier. I heard what you did with those Desert Demons and the raiders. Nice work out there." Tann turns around to shake my hand. He was clean-shaven, but he has heavy bags under his eyes. His black hair was short and shaggy. It was mostly covered by the green beret on his head. "Now, I assume my wife sent me something?"
I nod and hand him the letter. He reads it over and looks shocked at the words on the paper. "It seems that... I'm a father. I got more waiting for me back home." He puts the paper down and sits down for a drink of water, quickly soaking in the information.
"Congrats, man. I hope you'll see them soon." I give a quick bow and turn to leave, but Tann stops me. "Ah, Dopeman. Before you leave, I understand there's a bounty on you right?"
I turn and raise my eyebrow. "Yeah, why?"
"Must be hard to do a job with a 500,000 gold bounty on your head."
"I've been managing so far."
"Only a matter of time before that luck runs out."
I fold my arms. "What are you getting at, Major?"
"I want you to help us claim this land. We need Southland for tactical advantage against the NRF."
"Ah yes, the Nation of Righteous Fighting. Listen, I don't have a horse in this race. I'm not a fan of war."
"You won't be in the war itself, don't worry. I just need help in Operation: Usurp Heaven. Godless areas are running wild on the west coast. I see nothing of the sort in the east. The NUSA government needs to come over here...We're getting tired of constant animalistic behavior here!" Kyle looks passionate when he speaks on his hate of anarchy. "This war against the raiders is necessary. The war on the NRF is a requirement."
"War this war that. All war will ever do is just lead people to more and more death. You can't control these people man, Society as we know it is dead now. I'll do it only because the raiders are messing with the people. The only reason." I feel uncomfortable agreeing to take part in a war. It's for the people. I couldn't care less about the bounty. "Great. I'll give word when it's time for your mission." I soon leave and walk over to a much smaller bar to chill with Sera and Fisher for a few hours. I told them what happened.
"This is great!" Sera yells while drinking her water. Almost choked.
Fisher agreed. "This is good. With our help, we can crush anything. Cheer up."
"Wait," I snap out of my slump to look up. "Our?"
"Yeah, we're joining you. There's no way I'm letting you die out there." Sera says.
Fisher chuckled. "If only you could say that to me."
Sera turns to him. "Shut up before I choke you."
"Please do..." He says in return, practically drooling at the threat.
"Alright!" I shout. I did not want to go down that path. "If you want to join fine. God, I hate war."
Sera leans in. "Why?"
"If it wasn't for war, I would be in my house, with her. She's just skull and bones now. Because of war. Because these damned bombs."
"Dani. My girlfriend."
I stand and leave. I don't feel like talking about Dani.
The girl with the white hair.