- Craig: Pacifist Super Mutant, seeking his life purpose in tribal religious beliefs, undertaking a vision quest in the wasteland at the behest of his spirit guide;
- Dexx: Young but experienced thief, hoping to start a new, prosperous life as a scavenger after having recently left behind the street gangs of the Angel’s Boneyard;
- Rhiannon: Vault 21 outcast, thrust into the harsh, unknown wasteland, planning to retake her Vault and end the oppressive Overseer’s tyranny;
After a rough night out in the wilds, the party started once more early in the morning, continuing their way west along the deserted highway. Before long they encountered various other travelers, some of which were headed in the opposite direction. Dexx especially wanted to put as much distance between them and Landfill as possible, but Xena, the mercenary the group had met in Landfill, saw little of interest in their plan to head for the Hub. Thus she decided to tag along with a small convoy going east which they had met along the road. After a short goodbye they went their separate ways, perhaps to meet again before too long.
Down to four, Craig, Dexx, Rhiannon and Paul pressed on, and making good time, reached the NCR border before . A small border post, built along the ruined interstate, lay ahead of them, the Bear flag flying proudly above it. Dexx debated for a while whether it would be wiser to try and avoid official inspection, but in the end the group joined the short queue lined up near one of the manned windows. The bored-looking border guard halfheartedly welcomed them to the NCR and let them pass; to Dexx’ relief they managed to cross the border without being burdened with paperwork or taxed. Further ahead in the rest area they found without much trouble a caravan going in the direction of the Hub, which they were happy to join up with for the rest of the distance.
During the rather leisurely journey Dexx made use of the opportunity to have Rhiannon look over his ill-gotten gains, without however revealing their true origins. Immediately the odd, palm-sized metallic sphere drew her attention. Entirely smooth on the outside save for some illegible markings and a button, the device’s function was a mystery even for someone with her level of technical expertise. Though Dexx wisely cautioned her against pressing the button without knowing what the thing did, she went ahead anyhow. The sphere started flashing with a bright red light, fading in and out in intervals of approximately a minute. After the initial consternation, they decided it was probably not a bomb after all, and Dexx pocketed the object once more, hoping to learn more about it once they reached the Hub.
After three days the caravan pulled into the Hub, one of the largest cities of the known wasteland and the commercial center of the NCR. The group took full advantage of the fact, planning to browse the many weapon shops in the downtown district and sell off their excess weaponry and other finds. Rhiannon had the superior sales pitch, getting a good deal on selling everything as one package. Everyone was given their agreed on share, more than enough money for a comfortable few weeks. Paul immediately took off to invest his newfound wealth in the nearest bar, while the others decided to look for the man referred to as “Mad Pete” in one of the notes they found on the Ghoul’s PipBoy. Tracking Pete down turned out to be a fairly easy affair, as he was indeed to be found in the Falcon, a rather classy bar and hotel right there in downtown. Craig, Dexx and Rhiannon, now three, went over to the establishment and celebrated their success with a fine pre-War whiskey courtesy of Dexx.
Keeping an eye out for Mad Pete, they soon noticed a scraggy looking prospector of advanced years, already in high spirits even though it was just early afternoon, looking fairly out of place in the bar. The three of them took a seat at the table next to the man, and after a short introduction the old-timer was indeed the Mad Pete they were looking for. The prospector was quite the jovial and seemingly clearheaded fellow, not quite sure himself why the moniker “mad” had been bestowed on him. The years of digging around ancient ruins had left him with a sizeable amount of money, enough to comfortably retire. It took little prompting for him to start spinning tales about his former life as a scavenger. Some of the places Pete had visited, located far out east, weren’t familiar to them, and his description of a place called Dog Town especially caught Dexx’ attention. He gladly gave out advice and answered their questions, mentioning good places to visit and more exotic locales, said to be treasure chests for the enterprising scavenger. Despite his undeniable expertise, he couldn’t tell more about the mysterious object which had come into Dexx’ possession, though he thought he recognized the markings as Chinese script and suggested they’d take it to the Shi in
. Inquiring about the note from the Ghoul, Pete told them about his last scavenging mission to an abandoned military base north of New Vegas called Area 5, where all the others of the group had been killed and he himself barely made it out alive. After some more words of warning he drew them a rough map and wished them well on their further journeys. San Francisco