It started as a quiet sundown in the Junkyard. I was running, looking for salvage, when I noticed a small group gathered around the old man, Gill. Aposiopesis Fullstop and Agustsa Jun stood near acting as Gill’s bodyguards. A discussion was going on with an number of Wasteland folk, and no small number of bystanders, including Clarington MacIntyre, Malice Shepherd, Paytrok Ghost, Sandling Honey, Leovinus Skytower, Pirate Graves, and Tonks Mann.
Discussion wandered but turned to the subject of “watches” or “clocks”, old age devices for time measuring according to Gill. Maybe the heat got to folk or just the some desert wildness, but folks started talking about building a “death clock” and somehow killing the Tin Man. Gill seemed, to me, to encourage that wild talk, mostly from relative newcomers to our parts who may not have really understood the Tin Man’s powers. They were soon to get a vivid lesson.
Gill suddenly halted the talk, saying that he sensed something wrong, and needed to get back to his camp immediately. A ragged procession followed him up to his enclosure in Fort Stygian.
Gill poked about his trappings and checked to ensure the Salvager still worked — yet he still asserted that something was wrong, or missing. Just then, the fox-eared Sandling said, “I smell someone approaching.” Gill was visibly nervous. On the horizon appeared two grim figures. It was none other than the Tin Man himself and Gutterblood Spoonhammer — carrying a rifle I had never seen, but had heard of: a Slugthrower.
Consternation filled the crowd. Some who minutes earlier had been calling for the death of the Tin Man became very quiet. Others blustered a bit and suggested they rush the pair and, somehow, destroy them. Some fled. While there was some conversation, no one intervened as the fearsome duo of Gutterblood and Tin Man made their way to Gill’s camp.
Gill himself became almost hysterical, screaming “I hate you!” at the Tin Man. In a desperate frenzy, he pushed his salvager over the cliff, into the burning pool of fire. Mass confusion ensued. Some ran to check the Salvager; others ran towards Gill, others ran towards the Tin Man and Gutterblood. Gill himself fled toward The Junkyard, surrounded by a hail of bullets from the Slugthrower. He was trailed distantly by Apo, who reports he made a getaway.
The crowd was stunned at what seemed to be the loss of the last working salvager known to exist; cries of distress were heard. The Tinman, dauntless, headed into the fiery pit and dragged the masheen out. The many onlookers then helped him and Gutterblood drag, push, and kick it to a new home in Junkyard. Gutterblood then told the crowd of “fleshbags” (to use his terms) to disarm and disperse, and the Tin Man produced some tools and began his work on the damaged remains.
(( OOC Editor’s note: Photos and supplementary assistance by Agustsa Jun and Aposiopesis Fullstop. More photos of this and other Press-covered events can be found here. – A.S.))