War Zone: Look Around You

The Garrison of Makaio Stygian
The Garrison of Makaio Stygian

Recently, we’ve noticed the ghoulish Arena Master stirring again.  Makaio Stygian has been silently stalking the sand dunes of his realm, Hambone Slash, in the last few weeks.  I’ve long suspected and now conclude that he’s an elusive creature, sinister and cunning. Oft times, Stygian’s dark mind is turning and churning somewhere else, preoccupied…tinkering or modifying some strange device or tool designed to inflict pain.

In the northeast of Hambone Slash, I’ve investigated the strange ruin he’s uncovered near the pipeline.  The ghoulish Stygian apparently tolerated the presence of this human as I watched.  He moved quickly to fortify the broken walls with timbers and sandbags, while the fiendish Gutterblood Spoonhammer arrived with disgusting steel drums, carried easily on his shoulders.  Makaio used these and his own materials for barriers and obstructions in the structure and upon its roof…silently nodding at his work with apparent approval.

When I dared to ask Makaio what was this place, a wicked smile flashed below the dark hair hanging over his eyes.

“This is the Garrison. This is my home. Wastelanders are welcome here…and free to kill each other within its walls.”

We both expected the Garrison would play a key role in the next War Zone.  The Wastelanders eagerly fulfilled those expectations.

Two weekends ago, Wastelanders gathered about the Potato Farm for another difficult evening of War Zone in Hambone Slash.  From the chaotic crowd, NeoBokrug Elytis gathered up enough scavengers to form two teams.  Tonight’s War Zone would be a Best-of-Three Elimination Battles.  Once a team member falls from their wounds, their carcass is dragged back to the Potato Farm where the spectators chuckle at the unconscious bodies piling up. Whichever team survives to defeat all members of the opposing team(s) will win that Elimination Battle.  Whichever team is the first to win two Battles claims victory at War Zone.  Each team was allowed to equip only one rifle for the battles.

Team One contained the ghoulish Pirate Graves of the Black Market and three Renegades: Psycho Baroque, Robin Varriale, and Vexx Tendaze.  Robin was appointed leader of Team One.

Team Two was a diverse mix of Wastelanders: Aposiopesis Fullstop of the Trade Post, VoidTraveler Seetan of the Scarabs, Facekick Haystack of the Black Market, and Vissy Adamczyk of WasteMART.  VoidTraveler was appointed leader of Team Two.

The first battle was utter chaos as curious wanderers stumbled into the heat of battle.  The Metal Man hovered fast over the sand and the Arena Master scoured the dunes.  They dragged and nudged the dazed and confused to watch the fighting from the rare security of the Potato Farm.  Soon, the bodies of the fallen began to appear at the arena.

Aposiopesis, Robin, and Vexx quickly fell in defeat as the sand whipped up during the chaos jammed their ripper pistols.  The two teams converged on the aforementioned fortification, eager to fight for its cover and security.  Pirate succeeded in defeating VoidTraveler before dropping from his own wounds.  Before anyone knew it, the first battle was over and Team Two emerged the victor.

Team 2: Facekick, Vissy, VoidTraveler, and Aposiopesis (l to r)
Team 2: Facekick, Vissy, VoidTraveler, and Aposiopesis (l to r)

The teams regrouped, treating their injuries, and repositioned themselves in the region at NeoBokrug’s direction. At his call, the next battle began.  Once again, the two teams headed for the Garrison.  Clearly, they hoped for an advantage by gaining control of the structure.  Team Two reached it first, some taking positions within or waiting patiently near its walls while Team One cautiously split its forces, some cresting the hill to train their weapons below while the remaining two approached the fortification under cover of the pipeline.

Robin and Facekick were the first casualties as the two teams engaged in combat.  Pirate soon joined the pile of bodies.  The wary Pyscho and Vexx remained to face Team Two.  Void and Vexx were next to fall followed by Apo as the fierce fighting circulated the ruin, spreading out over the dunes as combatants chased each other.  Facekick and Vissy were the last to fall, allowing Psycho to claim this battle for Team One.

Team 1: Robin (front-center), Vexx, Psycho, Pirate (rear-l to r)
Team 1: Robin (front-center), Vexx, Psycho, Pirate (rear-l to r)

The final battle would determine the victor of this War Zone.  The two teams followed a similar strategy, neither unable to resist the temptation to fight over the Garrison and use it to their advantage.  This time, Team Two was rapidly decimated by Team One with Facekick, Apo, and Vissy quickly defeated.  Regardless, the members of Team One revealed a weakness: deficiency in “MATHS”.

They forgot one.  VoidTraveler Seetan.  The sly Scarab hid within the ruins, keeping a watchful eye on Team One as they returned to the Potato Farm, oblivious to their mistake. Seeing an opportunity, Void stalked the assuming victors and fired upon their backs.  Perhaps in different circumstances, Team One’s mistake would have been fatal.  Regardless, they quickly recovered from the confusing rain of bullets and set upon the lone warrior, finally finishing off Team Two and securing their victory of this War Zone.

For their efforts, Team One received the War Zone platter of med-kits, bullets, and two highly coveted Boards with Nails.  For their inability to count, Team One’s members were given a homework assignment to watch one of Giuseppe’s old films, Look Around You, for basic MATHS skills.  Question:  Four Wastelanders are fighting four Wastelanders at the Garrison.  Three Wastelanders suffer defeat at the pipeline.  Makaio wears sneakers and NeoBokrug wears pants.  At the end of the fight, how many are left standing?  Stop fighting…now.  Write down the answer in your copy book.  Answers will be collected on April the 4th of September.

((Drop your answers off at one of the Press mailboxes.  The first Wastelander to answer the question correctly will receive a pack of 3 medkits and a box of bullets ammo.))

Look Around You: MATHS