The group debated which objective to follow: rescue Dr. Powell or track the Starfall or head to Purgatory. The Starfall was probably already claimed. There was a very good chance that Dr. Powell was in serious trouble and quite possibly being held in Purgatory. Purgatory and Haven not on the same vector from Deadwood but with Axel’s drone we could search for Dr. Powell while heading in the general direction of Purgatory. We decided to trace Dr. Powell.
After chatting with Hadley the prospector about the geography of the Wastes and trading for water, we set off in Axel’s van to search. Axel drove the van while Whisperer used the drone to scan for visual signs of our favorite medic. Coyote, Will, Hedda and Coral scanned out the windows in all directions looking for anything. Unfortunately, soon after we left the environs of Deadwood a giant sandstorm became evident to the North, exactly where we wanted to go. Old Man Coyote noticed big black helicopters circling around the edges of the sandstorm. The Legion is known for big black helicopters and not known for being friendly. The storm will over take us before long. But, Axel is resolute, Legion or no Legion, storm or no storm, we will continue the search for Dr. Powell.
The drone picked up a set of tracks. We stopped to take a closer look. Axel thought the tires could be ones that he put on Dr. Powell’s car. The treads matched the treads of a batch of tires Axel put on several cars back in Deadwood. In the sand, Axel found Dr. Powell’s jade necklace, the necklace matches the ones worn by the Elder and Vortigus. There are several more tracks of different vehicles. These tire tracks lead north-northeast in the direction of Purgatory. The conclusion seems to be that Dr. Powell and probably Jonah have been taken to Purgatory.
By this time, the storm was on top of the group. We hurried back into the van and brought in the drone. We started off into the edge of the storm to avoid the helicopters head off into the general direction of Purgatory. Every so often we felt/heard/sensed something moving around in the sandstorm. Maybe a giant flying thing in the heart of the sandstorm. The group readies armaments. Whisperer takes over driving skillfully keeping us in the storm, away from the flying thing and on course. We never got a clear look at the thing in the sandstorm. Eventually, the sandstorm moved on.
Old Man Coyote’s Geiger counter sounded the alarm that we were encountering radioactivity. The sandstorm whipped up radioactive dust and we were approaching the radioactive area where Purgatory was found. Once the sandstorm moved on, Coyote’s Geiger counter calmed down and indicated that the radioactivity was only just over normal here. We should be okay as long as we don’t stay for long.
Then we saw just where we were, a gigantic boneyard, “The Secret SuperMutant Graveyard.” The odor was overpowering and smelled like rotting mutant. Some of the skeletons were completely devoid of soft bits, others were fresher. Whisperer drove through a few of the larger skulls while everyone in the van stared around in horror. Several people, not Coral of course, saw some movement around the edges. Some places seemed to have piled waystones, almost like guideposts or markers. Some of the larger skeletons were rigged up like shelters, occasionally with snares and carcasses. The traps and snares were stronger and more elaborate and usual, but recognizable as traps. Traps set by who? to catch what?
The van began to vibrate. Axel’s equipment registers a huge thermal signature behind the van and gaining. The nearby bones begin to shake. We were being chased by a gigantic mutant T. Rex intent on having us for lunch. Whisperer poured on the speed and evasive maneuvers. Hedda and William Tell pulled out the big guns and took several shots. MutantRex caught up and spit out a glue bomb onto the van. Whisperer evades some of it but the van gets tossed. Hedda, Coral and Axel got a bit injured in the accident. Coral being useless in a fight runs off and hides. Coyote and Hedda get to a safe hiding places with their weapons. Specifically, Hedda snagged the rocket launcher. William Tell, Axel and Whisperer ran away from the van with their weapons and nothing else. After several rockets and shots are fired at the MutantRex, Axel fired the killing blow with his plasma rifle.
The group emerged from their assorted hiding places to assess the damage to themselves, the van and their supplies. The van is hanging about 30 feet up from a ribcage of some sort. Coral and Axel scavenge as many of the supplies that flew out of the van as possible, focusing on water and ammo. Coyote and Whisperer maintained watch around the area. They remembered all the edge of vision movements they saw earlier and they realized how vulnerable we were at that point. At about the same time, the two of them noticed a figure wearing canvas, breathing apparatus and carrying a gun approaching us.
A tense conversation ensued with Gerard of the Sand Spiders. While he was impressed with the killing of the MutantRex, we were invading Raider territory. Coral explained the Bloody Hand invitation and our interest in talking to the Raider King. Gerard conferred with the other Sand Spiders on patrol and they decided to allow us to continue ahead. The Sand Spiders assisted us in getting Axel’s van down from the bones. Luckily, Axel can work miracles with machinery and he was able to get the van running again, at least enough to get us to Purgatory. Gerard gave us directions to get to Purgatory and how to get past the first set of guards. As a parting shot, Coral makes a date with Gerard for a drink in Purgatory when he comes in from patrol.
We limped on to Purgatory suddenly realizing that we had no plan. Back in Deadwood we discussed why we wanted to go to Purgatory. We think the Raider King probably has the Doomsday Device or Vortigus’ ‘weaponized mutagen’. Plus, we knew nothing about this Raider King so we were curious about him. Whisperer postulated that he might be a ‘mind-control phage mutant’ and that is how he amassed all this power. We might also have to rescue Dr. Powell and Jonah from his clutches. But we never actually came up with a plan of action when we actually got to Purgatory.
The outskirts of Purgatory came into view. We were greeted by human heads on spikes and a great many guards and debris. Not exactly welcoming. Coral showed the guards the Bloody Hand fabric and mentioned meeting with the Sand Spiders. This only got the group through the first set of guards. We were told to continue into the parking area. Purgatory was quite the sight. Fires everywhere, roasting meat – don’t look too closely. Rank upon rank of raiders. Thumping music. Crowd bumping into van, jumping on top of the van. We finally crawled to the edge of a clearing and had to stop. A loud gruff voice shouted, “GET OUT!”