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The Journeyman (Again)

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  06:35:33  31 July 2007
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Jhaxavier
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On forum: 05/31/2007
Messages: 188
The Journeyman (Again)

Yarr, I decided to make more life snippets of the 'Journeyman'. So far I've made the following, but it's not done yet...I'll build on it when I have time and enough sleep.

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I sighed and looked at the weathered sign of the 100 Rads Bar.

Someone had tacked up some large naughty magazine spread on top of it, and it was attracting a small crowd of Stalkers outside the entrance. Even that cranky hard-ass who guards Voromir’s was interested. I haven’t seen him with such a grin on his face since last month when a newbie pissed himself right in front of him in fear.

I pushed past the transfixed Stalkers in my way and made my way to the entrance. I walked down the steps and, as usual, there was Anatolli sitting behind his barrier reading his book. I came up and tapped the border of the window.

He looked up. “Hey! I haven’t seen you in ages. How’re you holding up?” he said, taking off his headphones and leaning towards the window.

“I’m doing fine, thanks man. The scientists have really been pushing me hard to get all kinds of crap for them…all these artefacts I have on my list are rare or otherwise suicidal to get,” I said, rolling my eyes.

“Hah, I’m sure you’ll do fine,” said Anatolli, sitting back. “Come on in, don’t stand there,” he said, with a wink.

I nodded and walked down to the warm bunker that was the bar. It wasn’t very packed at this hour, mostly because everyone else was outside looking at the porn.

The Barman noticed me and waved me over.

“Hey Journeyman, there’s someone to see you,” said Barman, gesturing to the left. A man in a grey jacket sat before me. He had a brown beard that was going slightly unruly, along with horn-rimmed glasses that made him look like a cross between a scientist and a soldier. The curved head of a crowbar poked slightly out of his backpack.

Upon hearing the Barman, the man looked up and saw me. He had piercing green eyes and a very calm face. He reached out to shake my hand and I obliged.

“I’m the Journeyman,” I said, “and you are…?”

“The guy’s called ‘Freeman’,” said Barman, “but it seems he’s deaf-mute or something, he hasn’t spoken a word since he came in…he likes to write little notes to talk though.” Barman raised his eyebrows and grinned.

Freeman shot a look of slight annoyance at Barman but then turned his attention to me. He seemed to be waiting for me to say something. Then it struck me…

“Oh yeah, you’re the guy the scientists were talking about! That scientist-turned soldier, has a Ph.D. in theoretical physics from…what was it…” Freeman quickly wrote on a piece of paper in front of him ‘MIT’ “Ah yes, MIT, my bad.”

Freeman began scribbling quickly for a few moments then turned the page to me, which was in English.

‘I wanted to meet you because I heard that you are an artefact hunter working for the scientists. I need a guide for the Zone, someone who can get my ass from here to the Chernobyl Power Plant, I have an important mission to do there.’

“Well, Dr. Freeman,” I said, running a hand through my hair, “I’m afraid I can’t really help you with that,” - Freeman said nothing and seemed to be listening intently - “there are Stalkers far more experienced and well-armed than I am who could help you a lot better. I’m just some runner boy surviving with the scientists at Yantar; I could recommend someone to you though.”

Freeman nodded and wrote, ‘I understand. I haven’t seen many really experienced Stalkers so far. Who is this person…?’

“Ah, that’d be the Guide,” I said. “He’s said to be one of the first Stalkers to have penetrated the Zone back in about 2009. He’s lasted this long and they say he’s survived one of the worst blowouts since the Zone’s beginning.”

Freeman mulled this over and nodded to himself. He then wrote, ‘So where can I find the guide?’

I shrugged. “Haven’t got a clue. You could ask the Barman, or ask around with the more experienced Stalkers, they probably know where he may be.”

Freeman nodded, gave a small smile, and shook my hand again. Then he stumped up the stairs and was gone.

“Well…” I said, “That was a rather interesting conversation…”

“Heh, no kidding; I guess that’s what they call the ‘strong and silent’ type,” said Barman, chuckling. “You want vodka or the usual?”

“The usual.” I took off my pack and began rummaging around inside, feeling the artefacts I had inside. “You want any of my artefacts? I got a bunch of cheap stuff here, some Jellyfishes, even a Stone Flower or two…”

“Nah,” said Barman, who had brought out my favorite energy drink, “I’ve been swamped in tons of artefacts brought on by treasure hunters who think they’re so cool. Not to mention they kept insisting on being paid more for common artefacts, bunch of pricks,” he said, shaking his head.

I was enjoying the sweet and strong flavor of the energy drink when a huge gloved hand landed on my head. I quickly looked around.

“Hey hey! How’s the Journeyman doing, eh?” said the massive, armored Scarecrow cheerfully, clapping me on the shoulder. He looked like a walking tank, and his Groza didn't help either.
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To be Continued.

  19:12:59  1 August 2007
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Jhaxavier
Senior Resident
 

 
On forum: 05/31/2007
 

Message edited by:
Jhaxavier
08/01/2007 19:14:10
Messages: 188
Alright, finished.
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“Hey hey! How’s the Journeyman doing, eh?” said Scarecrow cheerfully, clapping me on the shoulder, causing me to jump and spill a bit of my drink on the counter. Scarecrow gave a muffled laugh from behind his gas mask and plopped onto a seat beside me.

“What’s up Scarecrow?” asked Barman, now cleaning a glass.

“Ah, business has been good,” said Scarecrow. “Freedom’s been kinda pissed at me lately ‘cause of the safaris I’m doing, but they’re too chicken to come out and fight, they’d probably need me to transverse the wilderness beyond their base!” he said, sniggering.

I grinned and finished my drink. “So seen anything interesting I could pass onto the scientists?” I asked, turning to him.

“Well,” said Scarecrow, tilting his head left and right to loosen his neck, “I did see something really strange the other day.” He turned his head to face me. “I was in that village near the Freedom base, the one with all those bloodsuckers,” he said, now leaning towards me, “then I saw something weird moving through the air. I thought it was some kind of mobile anomaly or something, but then a trashcan threw itself at me. I’m not kidding!” he interjected, looking at my expression of incredulity. “Soon enough all the shit in the village was throwing itself at me, even the bloodsuckers were being chased by them…” he shrugged.

“Hmm…” I said, “I’ll definitely tell the scientists about it…you didn’t by any chance take photos, did you?”

“Nah, had no time,” said Scarecrow. “Some crazy psychic motherfucker trying to beat the hell out of me with a stovepipe and a car door was enough to get me out of there. Thank God for this armor,” he added, tapping his helmet with a knuckle.

He then turned to Barman. “Oh yeah, do you have that equipment I requested a week ago?”

“Yeah, it’s in the back, give me a minute,” said Barman, dropping his rag and going to the back.

“Did you see that spread outside?” I asked, grinning.

“Hah, yeah, but Petrenko took it down.”

“Whaaa?”

“Yeah, that half-wit of a colonel’s probably going to use it for his private ‘purposes’, hah,” offered Baldy, laughing raucously.

I shook my head and laughed too. These Duty guys, always thinking they’re so big, just, and mighty, when they could still be on the same level as the Freedomers.

“Well, I’ll be off guys,” I said, “I need to find all these damn artifacts for the scientists by this coming Thursday.”

“Alright, take care man,” said Scarecrow, giving me another hard clap on the shoulder and turning to talk to Barman.

I walked up and out of the 100 Rads Bar. The crowd was gone, but I noticed a throng of Stalkers at the entrance to Voromir’s, presumably demanding the magazine. I shook my head and grinned. Some things never change in people, even if it’s your duty to fight the Zone.
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Hope you liked it, I might make more if I get enough good ideas
  01:55:00  2 August 2007
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nunokas
Senior Resident
 

 
On forum: 02/12/2007
Messages: 287
cool story, Freeman "da mude" appearance was nice to
are you spanish? because of you nick has a latin flavour
  04:15:12  2 August 2007
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Jhaxavier
Senior Resident
 

 
On forum: 05/31/2007
Messages: 188

---QUOTATION---
cool story, Freeman "da mude" appearance was nice to
are you spanish? because of you nick has a latin flavour
---END QUOTATION---



Haha, thank you. Nope, I'm not Spanish, I'm American, actually, but I feel more at home in Singapore
 
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