Characters in this post
View character profile for: Cassandra Jones
View character profile for: Evelina Stone (Away)
View character profile for: Dr Jade Black
View character profile for: Jamie Eastlick
View character profile for: Dr. South
View character profile for: Samuel Jade Beckett
Jamie cleared his throat. “So what have we decide to do? Join the Alamo no, or wait for the rest of the crew?”
“Maybe you should ask him.” said the blacksmith from the bar. He gestured to a dark figure moving towards the saloon doors who pushed them wide apart and stood in the shadow of the doorway.
“Jay?” Cass half rose from her chair, her eyes alive, but as the stranger stepped inside, bringing the cold night air in with him, she sat back down again with a grunt of disappointment.
The piano started up, plunking bawdily away in the corner, as the man strode across the room towards the bar, his spurs clinking with each step that he took across the bare floorboards.
“We don’t want to speak to him” Cass murmured, eyeing the man’s travel-stained greatcoat, worn over an equally shabby looking military uniform.
“What?” Jade shot back Why?”
Aware of the Dwarfer’s collective scrutiny, the man briefly acknowledged them with a terse nod, as he moved past.
“Doctor Brown” he drawled, a smile creasing his features.
“Colonel James Neill” the other man said, the pleasure evident in his voice as he warmly shook hands with him “It’s so good to see you again” he gestured towards where the Dwarfers were sat and began guiding his friend over towards them “Allow me to introduce you to some acquaintances of mine”
“I’m sorry Emmett... folks” Neill tipped his hat to the Dwarfers “I’m afraid I don’t have time for no socialising. Our scouts are telling us that De Santa Anna is on the march, and I’m here to try and rustle up some reinforcements”
“I’m sure these good people would be more than willing to help” Doc Brown insisted.
“Whoa. Hey” still peevish from South’s revelations, Cass banged an angry hand down on the table and pushed herself to her feet “We’ve agreed nothing of the sort”
“Begging your pardon, ma’am” Colonel Neill grinned “But there’s only so much use that a skinny little thing like you could be”
This was greeted by a chorus of wolf-whistles, from the saloons other patrons, making Cass scowl in distaste and self-consciously fold her arms over the plunging neckline of her bodice.
“Sexist, primitive wankers” she snarled as she sat back down.
“Now, your menfolk” Neill continued, gravely “I could use”
Snickering, Eve leaned to her side to whisper “Ride ‘em cowboy” in Jade’s ear, making her snort and nearly choke on her drink.
“Y’all hear me!?” the Colonel continued, raising his voice as he strode forward, into the centre of the room “De Santa Anna’s army is on the march and is heading this way. We need men, good men, to fight for the Texan Republic – your home.”
“Are we doing this?” Jamie asked in a low, insistent voice as the Colonel continued his recruitment speech.
Everyone turned their eyes towards Cass, who shrank back from their gaze.
Sometimes, she hated having to lead.
“I dunno” she shrugged.
From their expressions, Cass could tell that this wasn’t what they wanted to hear.
She sighed inwardly.
“I’m not happy about being involved in the Alamo siege” she said after a moment “If I remember right, the defenders were outnumbered ten to one and they all got massacred. It’s too high risk”
“Artemis is already at the mission” Jade observed in the uneasy silence that followed “The scouts will no doubt find the others and summon them there too. Jay as well”
Cass scowled. That was a low shot.
“We could do with finding him” she conceded “Some of the more advanced time drives come with a null-space equipment cache. That’s probably where all our weapons and other shit is being held”
“I’ve still got my MACO pistol” Eve said happily.
“It’s alright for some” Cass paused to briefly glower over her shoulder as Neill strode past behind her, still holding forth with his speech “I’m missing a nanosuit and a whole load of other stuff”
“Maybe the cache has extra equipment in it?” Jamie said “We could do with it if we’re going to hold off a couple of thousand people wanting to kill us”
“That’s a fucking big maybe”
“I say we do this” South chipped in “We need to screw up history – This is an ideal opportunity”
Cassandras eyes betrayed some of her irritation as he said this. As far as she was concerned, this was not a democracy.
“And what happens if Jay isn’t there with the time drive and the equipment cache?” she demanded “What happens if we just wind up trapped there and massacred?”
“Yeah, but what if he is there?” Jade asked
“Are you going to do this all night?”
“Well, Jay’s not here, so someone’s got to keep you on your toes”
In spite of her mood, Cass grinned “Piss off” she said, good humouredly.
“You know,” South said “In all seriousness, Ms. Black does make a good point. Mr Chrysler is the only one with a time drive and were he to get captured or even worse...”
“Chrysler?” Sam queried “The Captain?”
“Yeah, that’s the one” Eve nodded
“The dead one?”
“Long story” Cass said dismissively. She lapsed into silence, while Colonel Neill built to the triumphant conclusion of his speech.
“Are you with me!?” the man yelled to a chorus of cheers from the other patrons.
“Well, it’s good to see that there ain’t no cowards here” he continued in more conversational tones “Now, I’ll be taking names as y’all leave tonight. The Republic expects you to do you duty. We ride for the Alamo at first light tomorrow”
“He’s fucking desperate” Cass murmured, slowly shaking her head in distaste as she watched him take up position by the doors, the general hubbub in the room slowly resuming.
“We need to do this” Jamie said firmly.
“We should wage a guerrilla campaign – Sabotage, harassment and attrition. We don’t need to be cooped up, getting the shit shot out of us with artillery”
“But, Jay and the others...” Jade began
Cass held up her hands “We leave with the other recruits tomorrow morning. We swing by the garrison and pick our own up. After that we take stock – If we have the time drive and an equipment cache, we see what we can utilise and wing it from there. If Jay’s not there, I think we should we get the hell out as quickly as we can, and see what we can do on the outside”
She paused to glance over at Colonel Neill taking the names of a couple of new conscripts. “Failing all that, we can always execute that historically significant fucker and see what happens”
Ignoring, for the moment, Cassandra’s brutal pragmatism, Jamie jerked his head in the direction of where Doc Brown was loitering at the end of the bar, just holding a shot of whisky.
“What are we doing about him?”
“I don’t trust him”
“What!?” Eve said, shocked “He seems nice”
“He was way too keen to get us involved in the siege,” Cass retorted “but we need equipment; maybe we can use some of the shit in his forge?”
Jamie nodded in agreement “It’d be worthwhile bringing anything along that would make our job easier”
“I want a look at this alleged time machine as well – There might be a few parts we can strip”
“We could do with more appropriate clothes as well” Jade pointed out “Especially you, Cass – Even this far south it gets pretty cold during the night and we don’t want any cases of hypothermia”
“Okay” Cass held up a hand to count off on her fingers “We need horses, weapons, clothing and any equipment that we can use in siege or guerrilla warfare” she looked between the Dwarfers all sat around the table “South’s fancy credit card isn’t going to work out here, so we’re going to have to get creative”
Apologies for being quiet this week - work was mad busy, only for some manager to turn around at the last minute to say that they don't need the code completing and put live after all
I'd be lying if I said I wasn't bitter
So, we’re on an equipment scavenge - What do we find around town that'll help and how / do we pay for it?
What’s Doc Brown’s story?
Why is he so keen to involve us in the Alamo massacre? - what are his motives?
Does he he have anything useful back at his forge? – does he help us or are we going to have to kill him?
We aren’t going to be able to create steam powered weapons of mass destruction in just a couple of days before the siege stars, so let’s give ourselves (and Artemis) a leg up, in the hours we’ve got, before we leave for the Alamo...
I only tagged those previously mentioned, but if you want to write yourself in, go for it
If your character isn’t in town with Cass and the others, where are they and what are they doing?
Where’s Jay got to...?