| 12:00:24 24 June 2010
On forum: 01/22/2008
In the End, Part 3|
They walked through the old Ukrainian countryside, there was a quiet peacefulness here that could not be described to anyone who has never been there yet there was also a sinister feeling that followed the wind. Nikolas fiddled with his radio, which was slung like his rifle around his shoulder, there was a cracking noise and old soviet war marches started to play.
"what the hell kind of radio station is this?" Pavlik asked
"uh let me see" Nikolas replied looking at the radio "1854.1920151813"
"no wonder why your barely getting any signals" said Mitya "turn it lower or something"
"how would you be able to get a signal that high?" Pavlik asked
"I dunno and frankly don't care" said Mitya
Nikolas changed the station to another playing Jimi Hendrix, All along the Watchtower. The three of them walked to the top of a hill and looked down, they saw several houses, a few missing roofs. They looked closely and saw people wandering from house to house, sitting around bonfires and playing guitar.
"a stalker camp" said Pavlik
"a friendly stalker camp?" Nikolas asked
"probably" said Mitya "one way to be sure"
Mitya kept his hand on his holster and ran down the hill, Nikolas and Pavlik right behind them, both keeping their hands in similar positions. They ran along the fence and slowly emerged, revealing them to the stalkers, the stalker watching the entrance merely raised his rifle slightly but no more than necessary to get the message across, don't try anything. They moved their hands from their holsters and walked in.
"well, they seem friendly" said Mitya
"a little paranoid though" said Nikolas
"well they have a right to be cautious" said Pavlik "it is supposed to be a dangerous place here"
"I don't see much danger" said Mitya
"neither do I" Pavlik agreed
"are we forgetting the rock?" Nikolas asked
"what rock?" Mitya asked
"never mind" said Nikolas "I guess your egos are getting in the way of your memory"
"Either that or your paranoia is getting to yours" Mitya retorted
"guys shut up, lets just hang here and see what we can learn" said Pavlik
"you there, rooks, come over here" said a cold, weathered voice
They turned their heads to see an older man, in his forties, he was wearing a brown protective suit and his face was heavily scarred, he had a cold, calculated look and also looked like he had seen a lot. He called them towards him, his eyes were dark and despite his almost emotionless appearance seemed sad.
"you talking to us?" Pavlik asked
"yes, what is your name?" the man asked back
"Pavlik, this is my friends Mitya and Nikolas" answered Pavlik
"well, I am Stag" said the man "I am perhaps the most experienced one here"
"it shows" said Pavlik "so Stag, what can you tell me about this place"
"this is the very edge of the zone" said Stag "theres a anomalies but they are few and apart, the mutants are fairly docile but are still dangerous, the more deadly mutants prefer to keep to the northern area"
"hmm anything else?" Pavlik asked
"you will need to worry about bandits here, and the military have started to shoot us on sight" said Stag "there are also a lot of renegades in the area and rumors of mercenaries in the north"
"bandits? renegades? mercenaries?" Pavlik asked confused
"well bandits are stalkers who prey on the weak in order to find profits" said Stag "renegades are basically the same thing but want to do it their own way and mercenaries... well they will do pretty much anything to get paid, any more questions"
"who's in charge?" Pavlik asked
"talk to Galileo" said Stag "hes in the large house over there, keeps to the attic"
"okay well see you Stag" said Pavlik
"perhaps if your lucky" said Stag walking away
They walked to the large house Stag had pointed to and climbed up the ladder. They reached the top and found themselves climbing into a furnished attic, the walls were lined with sandbags and metal bars blocked them off from the rest of the attic. On one side of the bars was a desk and what seemed like hundreds of boxes, on the other side were a few chairs not unlike a waiting room. Sitting at the desk was an old man wearing a ragged brown robe, Pavlik noticed through the tears he was wearing a protective suit not unlike Stag's underneath the robe, he was busy writing something, occasionally tugging on his thick white beard or scratching his bald head.
"hello" said the old man "I am Galileo, I will be with you in a moment"
"uh.. okay.." said Pavlik, he caught Mitya's eye and shrugged.
The three of them sat down and waited for a few minutes, Galileo finished what he was writing and looked up.
"you are new I take it?" Galileo asked
"uh yes" said Pavlik
"names" Galileo asked though it sounded more like a statement
"I am Pavlik and these are my friends Mitya and Nikolas" said Pavlik
"okay" said Galileo quickly writing something down "I take it your here because you need the rubles and are looking for a job"
"uh I guess" said Pavlik
"well I can help you out" said Galileo "I am in touch with a lot of people, from rich bastards to traders to politicians and generals"
"and you're telling me you can communicate with all of them from here?" Mitya asked curiously
"yes, I have the equipment behind those boxes" said Galileo "but the important part is relaying that to stalkers such as yourself, as you are rooks it will be harder for you to find jobs, there is a simple system in the zone of course"
"which is?" Pavlik asked
"Rooks have other people find jobs for them, veterans find the jobs themselves and masters have the jobs find them" said Galileo
"funny" said Mitya "so are there any jobs?"
"well lets see" said Galileo, he pulled a laptop out of a desk drawer and skimmed through it "well theres a few reserved for the more experienced but hmm..."
"so..." said Pavlik slowly
"no one currently needs anything done but let me just check something... hmm..." Galileo paused before continuing "well we have been trying to secure an farm from bandits for some time... I was going to send a team but we were doubting whether we could pull it off with so few numbers... three more could make a difference..."
"so... do we have a job?" Pavlik asked
"are you guys any good with those?" Galileo asked pointing at their rifles
"well I'm not half bad" said Pavlik
"I guess I'm okay" said Nikolas
"I'm great with mine" said Mitya
"hmm... well I will let the team know that we are going to do it, meet them outside, I am sure they will be pleased" said Galileo
"whats so important about this farm?" Pavlik asked
"The dirt is fertile there, we take that and we can farm our own food" said Galileo "you will understand the importance of that once you spend time here"
"okay well, we will be back when we are done" said Pavlik
"we shall see" Galileo replied
They climbed down the ladder and turned around, there were stalkers staring at them, lots of them. They looked around at the many faces looking up at them, a lot of them looked hungry, others worried, a large group approached them.
"well, you're the ones who convinced Galileo to let us take that farm" said the leader of the group
"yeah I guess..." said Pavlik
"great, I hope you know how to use those rifles, we will need every gun we can get" said the leader "the name is Sheriff"
"I'm Pavlik" said Pavlik
"Mitya" said Mitya
"Nikolas" said Nikolas
"well" said Sheriff "lets get going, a lot of people are hungry, lets not let this go on for longer than a harvest"
They walked out of the camp, the people watched them leave, some were in tears, it was as if they were walking to their own funerals.
They walked over several hills and stopped, the group crouched to the ground. Now that their were less people around Pavlik managed to get an accurate number of how many there were, about twenty.
"right down there" said Sheriff pointing to a large farmhouse, a barn and a large field, he watched through binoculars
"how many bandits?" Pavlik asked
"about a good dozen covering the barn, another dozen patrolling the field, they seem to be growing potatoes and there is about twenty or so in the farmhouse, and those are just by the windows" said Sheriff "it is going to be difficult, might even need a miracle and not all of us are coming back alive, but its for the sake of our village"
Pavlik looked over at Mitya and Nikolas, Mitya looked slightly bothered but Nikolas was shaking in fear.
"well lets get this over with" said Pavlik
"yeah, thats pretty much all we could do" said Sheriff
They walked slowly and quietly down the hill, keeping low and rifles raised. They reached the field and kept very still. Sheriff examined the potato plants and whispered excitedly.
"jackpot, they are ready to harvest" said Sheriff "lets take the farm before the bandits eat them all"
They slowly crossed the field, the aimed with their rifles and fired, what happened next could not have been expected. The stalkers took the bandits by surprise, the bandits in the field were quickly killed but the ones in the barn and farmhouse laid down suppressive fire, what was remarkable was when another set of automatic fire was heard as renegades came running down another hill opening fire on the bandits and the stalkers. The three way war was about to get worse when sniper fire came from the western hill, Pavlik looked over to see six shapes firing down the hill. The timing turned worse when a military patrol walked by at just the right time at the wrong moment. One 7.62 round from one of the snipers hit a soldier in the side of the head, the others opened fire, bullets were spraying everywhere.
Pavlik ran through the field and dived next to a stack of boxes, he reloaded his SKS and turned his head, he could barely see anything, we wiped a lot of blood off of his face and blinked for a few moments, several bullets missed him by inches, he turned to see the snipers aiming at him, he crawled back and fired several shots. He jumped to his feet and ran to the farmhouse and ran inside, he ran right into a bandit who hit him in the face with the stock of his shotgun. Pavlik stared up at the bandit, who's shotgun was aimed right for his head, Pavlik closed his eyes and a loud gunshot was heard.
Pavlik opened his eyes and saw the bandit slumped against the wall, he turned his head to see a man staring down at him, his vision focused revealing Stag holding a large revolver.
"it seems I showed up just in time" said Stag helping Pavlik up
"yeah" said Pavlik, the sounds of the firefight returned to his ears
"well if you will excuse me" said Stag as he turned and walked up the stairs, there were loud gunshots after that
Bullets shot past Pavlik again, Pavlik ran to the back room and tripped. He fell down the stairs of an open trapdoor and hit the floor at the bottom, he hit his head and his vision blurred, right as he landed however his rifle fired and he heard someone shout in surprise. His vision blurred more and more until it eventually darkened and he saw no more.
Pavlik woke up, he saw the familiar face of Mitya looking down at him.
"OI WAKE UP" Mitya shouted
"washappanin" Pavlik mumbled
"we won" said Mitya "and thanks to you the village is safe"
"whayousay" Pavlik mumbled, he turned his head and saw a bandit slumped against what looked like some sort of radio transmitter, a large hole in his back, Pavlik noticed a small trail of smoke exiting the barrel of his rifle.
"come on, everyone is celebrating" said Mitya lifting him up
"why didn't anyone wake me sooner?" Pavlik asked
"well you were unconscious and Sheriff was worried you might have a concussion and of course that would probably make you useless in a fight so we just locked the trap door" said Mitya "and it kept you alive"
"so what happened?" Pavlik asked
"well the bandits and renegades killed most of each other, the snipers killed their fair share but the military practically did it all, we were screwed until Stag showed up and killed them all with a single burst of his rifle" said Mitya "then he ran into the farmhouse and the rest of us ran up the hill to attack the snipers"
"you ran towards the snipers?" Pavlik asked
"yeah, Sheriff figured they wouldn't be as accurate up close and turned out to be right" said Mitya "then we ran inside and found you lying downstairs unconscious with the dead bandit and Stag had already wiped out about twenty bandits inside"
"so there were more than twenty?" Pavlik asked as Mitya helped him up the stairs
"yeah, more like forty" said Mitya "we spent several hours carrying bodies out and burning them that we kind of forgot about you"
"what made you remember?" Pavlik asked
"Nikolas asked why you were so quiet" said Mitya
"ah... great..." said Pavlik "the hero is already forgotten"
"don't worry, apparently the bandits were growing these potatoes for other purposes than eating" said Mitya
"what do you mean by other purposes?" Pavlik asked
"drinking" said Mitya "there is a whole distillery operation going on in the barn"
"huh so I am guessing thats where all the stalkers are" said Pavlik
"yep, well whats left of them" said Mitya
"how many did we lose?" Pavlik asked
"about half of us" said Mitya "we probably would have all died if Stag didn't show up"
"well than we are all thankful he arrived, he saved my life earlier, I almost ate a shotgun round" said Pavlik as Mitya helped him out of the farmhouse "where is he anyways"
"he left afterwards" said Mitya "didn't say a word"
"I think I can walk now" said Pavlik steadying himself
The two of them walked into the barn, inside were about a dozen stalkers, their suits were red and their hair was matted, they were sweating heavily but were smiling brightly, they each had a bottle of vodka. They all cheered when Pavlik entered the room. Pavlik scanned the room, he noticed a face missing.
"where is Sheriff?" Pavlik asked "shouldn't he be here?"
The stalkers quieted, their grins faded.
"Sheriff was killed when we rushed the snipers, he was shot in the neck, we... we couldn't stop the bleeding..." said Mitya
Pavlik sat for a moment then grabbed a bottle and raised it.
"To Sheriff, and everyone else who died here" said Pavlik
Everyone muttered the toast and drank. They stayed for a few hours but decided to leave before dark to get their payment. They walked across the field, watching as the stalker quickly extracted the potatoes and carried them into the barn for storage, they would clean them and bring them to the village tomorrow. The three of them walked to the village, Nikolas turned the radio on, Neil Young Heart of Gold was playing. They saw the village just over the next hill, they walked up to the top then slowly walked down the hill, they were going to get payed for their first job...
I'm back baby.
| 14:52:14 24 June 2010
On forum: 01/22/2008
In the End, Part 4|
The three of them walked down the hill to the village, they heard shouting and quickly reached for their pistols. They slowly walked to the center of the village, they found a crowd of stalkers formed in a circle. They pushed their way through the crowd to get a better look. There was a stalker standing in the middle, completely circled by the others. The stalker was slightly smaller than the others in size and build, the others were staring hungrily, the stalker's voice was distorted by a gas mask.
"this is insane" said the stalker "why are you doing this"
"we are hungry, the others aren't coming back and there will be no glorious harvest, we won't last the week, let alone several months" said head of the mob "no one knows you, you just got here"
"theres got to be something else to eat" said the stalker, clearly afraid
"there isn't and we're not going to pass off such an important opportunity" said the head of the mob
The mob leader stepped up and ripped the gas mask off the stalker, revealing the face of a pretty young woman, possibly in her early twenties, her eyes were watering. The mob leader pulled out his hunting knife and raised it up, he swung down in a stabbing motion, there was a loud gunshot. The mob leader fell over, knife flying out of his hand, blood sprayed all over the mob, the bullet went right through his skull. The crowd turned to look for the shooter, Pavlik looked down at his Colt 1911, smoke was still hanging from the barrel. The mob scattered and returned to their shelters leaving Pavlik, Mitya, Nikolas, the young woman and the corpse alone in the courtyard.
"thank you" she cried in relief, running over and hugging him
"you're... uh... welcome" said Pavlik
Mitya checked the body of the mob leader and grabbed his knife, he passed it to Pavlik who quickly caught it. Pavlik pushed the young woman back and looked into her eyes, they were a stunning bright blue, the likes you rarely see.
"you okay?" he asked
"yeah I think" she said quietly
"Hi I'm Pavlik" said Pavlik, he noticed Mitya rolling his eyes
"I'm Sasha" she said
Pavlik smiled slightly, she smiled back, Nikolas tapped him on the shoulder.
"we're supposed to be getting payed?" Nikolas asked
"oh... uh.. right.." said Pavlik "well Sasha, we're just returning from a job"
"oh... right" she said
"you can come with us if you want" said Pavlik eying the many faces looking out the windows
"thats probably a good idea" she said, understanding what he meant
"AND TO ALL OF YOU HIDING IN YOUR HOUSES" Pavlik shouted "FOOD COMES TOMORROW"
They walked over to the ladder, they each climbed up and into Galileo's office.
"I received word it was a success" said Galileo
"yes, the farm is secure" said Pavlik
"I also hear you saved the town by preventing the bandit leader from calling reinforcements" said Galileo
"yes he forgot to lock his cellar door" said Pavlik
"well for that I owe you a lot" said Galileo "its a shame about Sheriff, I will need to find another strong lad to defend the village but I am a man of my word and here is your payment"
Galileo opened a safe and pulled out a stack of rubles, he pulled out two thousand rubles.
"I trust you can decide on how to split it?" said Galileo "oh and just a curiosity, what was that gunshot I heard?"
"oh... uh..." said Pavlik "one of the villagers was trying to eat another and... another obviously disagreed with him"
"hmm" said Galileo, staring at him through his bright green eyes and seemed to see through his lie but smiled "I guess so"
They climbed out of Galileo's attic and looked at each other, Pavlik was holding the rubles.
"so how do we split" said Pavlik
"he couldn't of given us an easier number to split into three" said Nikolas
"four" said Pavlik
"you have got to be kidding me" said Mitya
"its okay I'm fine" said Sasha
"you don't even have a weapon, you won't be able to survive without one" said Pavlik
"but she didn't attack the farm" said Mitya
"we almost died trying to get that money and your giving a whole quarter away" said Nikolas
"we can't leave her with nothing" said Pavlik pointing to the corpse "she will just fall prey to something like this all over again"
"just this once" said Mitya "however she has to earn it in the next job"
"does this mean I am coming with you?" said Sasha
"seems like it" said Pavlik "if you want to survive I guess so"
"fine" said Nikolas "now there are four of us"
"and the bill gets smaller and smaller" said Mitya
"at least its easier to split four ways than three" said Pavlik
The other two grunted as if agreeing but refusing to acknowledge that, Sasha looked back and forth uneasily.
"I say we should find a place to sleep, its getting dark" said Pavlik looking at the setting sun
"where though" said Nikolas looking uneasily at all the hungry faces
"I heard a few minutes before the cannibalism attempt that the bar offers bedrooms with locking doors" said Sasha
"theres a bar here?" Mitya asked suddenly paying more attention
"yeah just at the end of the street" said Sasha pointing to a sign that said 'Bar'
"ahh there it is" said Mitya with a big grin “well after me”
Mitya half skipped to the bar, the others running afterwards, they reached the bar and opened the door. It was almost empty save for a single man sitting behind a counter. The man was young and looked like he was losing hope, he looked up at them, he had an otherwise friendly appearance. His eyes were hazel brown, but had dark bags under them like he hadn't slept in a long time and his hair was messy and light brown. He looked slightly hopeful when he saw them.
"HineedaplacetostayIamViktorthisismybarhowareyouareyouthirstytiredmaybeIamViktor" he blurted out
"uh..." said Mitya "can you say that slower?"
"with a break between each word" said Nikolas
"and maybe take a breath" said Pavlik
"sorry, your my first customers in a long time and the energy drinks haven't helped much" said the bartender "I am Viktor, and this is my bar... its not much, I haven't had any customers since I opened... the only one who ever stayed was Stag but I think that was just out of pity"
"well your in luck, the four of us are tired and would like to rest here, how much" Pavlik asked
"5 rubles a night" said Viktor "each"
"not bad" said Pavlik "I spent time in more expensive places that were worse than this"
They payed Viktor who thanked them happily.
"Viktor, have any drinks?" Mitya asked
"I have a few bottles, not much though" said Viktor
"lets open one" said Mitya putting twenty rubles on the counter
"okay" said Viktor pouring some drinks
"so Viktor..." Pavlik began "how long have you been here?"
"a few days, maybe a week" said Viktor
"and you opened a bar already?" said Sasha "thats pretty impressive progress"
"not really, it didn't take much work to open up, I just strapped a sign to an abandoned building, talked to Galileo and made a deal..." said Viktor "I thought it would be a good idea"
"what do you know about Galileo?" Nikolas asked
"well he looks after his town, but he is a difficult person to understand" said Viktor
"what do you mean?" Nikolas asked
"well like I said, he looks after the town but he looks after himself more" said Viktor
"really?" Mitya asked "how so?"
"he hoards years of food in his attic and the town is starving" said Viktor "but bandits come and he personally kills them to protect us"
"maybe he is protecting himself" said Pavlik
"maybe, but he needs the stalkers to keep people from attacking, no one wants to hit a large group like this" said Viktor
"except for him" said Pavlik
"what do you mean?" Viktor asked
"we hit the farm earlier" said Mitya
"you did? were you successful?" Viktor asked
"would we be standing here if we weren't?" Mitya asked
"well theres a point there" said Viktor "so its true about it being fertile"
"yep, the who field was filled with potatoes" said Nikolas "and they converted the barn into a distillery"
"so theres lots of vodka" said Viktor
"yeah but the garrison there probably drank it all by now" said Mitya
"damn, I could certainly use more drinks" said Viktor
"don't worry things will get better" said Sasha "I think I'm tired, which room is mine?"
"uh upstairs first door on the right" said Viktor passing her a key
"thanks, goodnight everyone" said Sasha
"goodnight" they all said
"which room is mine?" Nikolas asked
"upstairs third door on the right" said Viktor passing him a key
"yeah I think I'll go to sleep too" said Mitya
"upstairs fourth door on the right" said Viktor passing a key
They left the room, Pavlik drank some more vodka, Viktor joined him.
“so why are you here?” Viktor asked
“why?” Pavlik rhetorically asked “my life out there was over anyways, no heat, no power, no job, no car, no family... big guy with a baseball bat and a .44 magnum”
“most people only have one of those problems” said Viktor
“I'm not most people” said Pavlik “I am just Pavlik”
“what about the others?” Viktor asked
“Well Mitya and I have been inseparable since we were kids” said Pavlik “where I went he followed, when I got in a fight he would finish it for me”
“sounds like the good kind of friend” said Viktor
“yeah, I got our boss killed, so we both entered unemployment together” said Pavlik
“what about your other friend?” Viktor asked
“Nikolas?” Pavlik asked “hes the person that usually started all those fights”
“of course” said Viktor
“what can I say” said Pavlik “hes a nihilistic bastard but a good friend all the same, he moved to Omsk and well we haven't heard from him until a few days ago he showed up at my door with Mitya”
“what did he do in Omsk?” Viktor asked
“I'm not really sure” said Pavlik “he does this all the time though, finds something he believes he is destined to do and then shows up at my door when it falls apart, he doesn't show it but it bothers him”
“and the beautiful lady?” Viktor asked
“what about her?” Pavlik asked with a sudden unintentional coldness
“nothing meant by it” said Viktor “but who is she?”
“I have no idea” said Pavlik “I just met her”
“where in the zone could you find a woman as beautiful as that?” Viktor asked in surprise
“just down the road” said Pavlik
“in this village?” Viktor asked
“yeah seriously just outside your door” said Pavlik
“I gotta get out more” said Viktor
“are you kidding” said Pavlik “you got a forgettable bar”
“ouch” said Viktor “though that has a nice ring to it, forgettable bar”
“if you name the place that I will sue you” said Pavlik
“ouch again” said Viktor
“sorry I guess this place is getting to me” said Pavlik
“how so?” Viktor asked
“a few days ago my life was horrible but it still had a chance, I had a family but I threw them away, I had a job but I ruined it, I had a car but its long gone, I had an apartment but I left it” said Pavlik “now I am a killer, I helped kill over forty people then killed a starving man just outside”
“you killed someone from here?” Viktor asked
“he was trying to eat Sasha” said Pavlik “I saved her”
“I guess chivalry ain't dead after all” said Viktor
“yeah well I wasn't thinking” said Pavlik
“don't worry man, life gets better eventually” said Viktor
“but I am killing people and the worse part is it feels right” said Pavlik
“don't worry” said Viktor “you killed bandits, murderers, thieves, thugs, convicts... the list goes on, and all in self defense... actually selfless defense, you saved this village”
“but couldn't there be an alternative?” Pavlik asked
“this is war” said Viktor “each man must find peace within and for peace to be real must be unaffected by outside circumstances”
“that was beautiful” said Pavlik “you come up with that?”
“no it was Gandhi” said Viktor
“”smart guy' said Pavlik
“yeah he knew his stuff” Viktor
“sure did' said Pavlik
“well Pavlik I assume you will need your time alone, I need to get some sleep anyways” said Viktor “I haven't slept in a while”
“goodnight” said Pavlik
“don't forget to pay for your drinks” said Viktor laughing as he walked upstairs
Pavlik drank his vodka, he thought on Viktor's words, he heard footsteps behind him.
“mind if I join you” said Sasha's soft voice behind him
“why not” said Pavlik pouring her a drink
“its getting late, why are you still up?” she asked taking a sip, her expression changed
“strong stuff” said Pavlik
“definitely” said Sasha “and flavorless
“thats Vodka for you” said Pavlik “and I am just thinking over some things”
“care to share?” Sasha asked
“I am trying to figure out what I am doing” said Pavlik looking up “Viktor may not look it but hes gives good advice”
“I am sure he does” said Sasha “but what is it your wondering?”
“I left a lot behind” said Pavlik “I want to know if it was worth it”
“did you leave anything or anyone?” Sasha asked
“everything” said Pavlik “my family probably disowned me, except my brother Petrov, he may not agree with my decision but he would never abandon me”
“I left a lot too” said Sasha
“what happened?” Pavlik asked
“I was with my older sister and...” Sasha began slowly, Pavlik could tell this wasn't going to be a happy story “we were at a small cafe, in Odessa and she went inside for a moment, I dropped my phone and went to pick it up... next thing I knew I was on the ground bleeding, the entire cafe had exploded... apparently there was a notorious gangster having his morning coffee in the same cafe, the government decided that a few casualties were worth taking down his criminal organization, my sister was gone and I realized there really wasn't anything left for me, if the government could do something like that, why live within their reach”
“I'm sorry” said Pavlik
“I'm okay” said Sasha “it took me a while to get over the pain, but it is behind me”
“and just like that you forget about it?” Pavlik asked
“what else can we do?” said Sasha finishing her glass “I think I am going to go back to bed, goodnight Pavlik”
“goodnight Sasha” said Pavlik
He watched her leave, her philosophy is so simple and obviously flawed but he realized that even if only slightly, it helped. He picked up the keys on the table and stood up dropping twenty rubles on the table and stumbled off his seat, he drank a lot.
Pavlik stumbled drunkenly up the stairs, he passed the other doors. He reached his door and unlocked it, inside was a wire cot, no mattress. He stared for a few minutes but reasoned he was too drunk to care and locked the door, he climbed onto the cot and closed his eyes, his mind drifted from the day before yesterday, to the wailing noise he heard upon entering the zone, to the farmstead and Sheriff, to Stag saving his life and ending with Sasha, he saved her life, he saw her smiling at him, her eyes sparkling blue but otherwise sad... he was beginning to think this trip was worth the risk after all...
I'm back baby.
| 15:19:04 24 June 2010
On forum: 01/22/2008
Did I ever tell you zat ze geztapo wil zagrifize ze hundred kittenz of ze Perzia, juzt for your enjoyment? I love the fact that some authors mix girls and love and all that stuff with the Zone,an you are one of them buddy.
Also write more next time these cliffhangers hurt, like write 5 parts and post the one after another.
Well a story needs motivation both in writing and in plot, if the main character is just running through trying to do some dangerous task for no reason it leaves a disappointing tale, but if he has a true motivation, something overall good then it makes it interesting and gripping.
As for writing it I am pretty much done this entire story but I realized it needs refinement, the last half of part 4 I literally just added for what I think was a great improvement, not to mention a good extra length. I am making sure this story is good, even if I have to deal with the Gestapo, wisdom is waiting for success rather than rushing into failure and as a wise man once said, wisdom begins in the end.
I'm back baby.
| 11:17:49 25 June 2010
On forum: 01/22/2008
In the End, Part 5|
There was a horrific wailing noise and Pavlik woke up sweating. He looked around the room, the lighting in the room was blood red, he turned around and looked out the window, the sky had turned red and there were bright flashes of light, he heard shouting below and a loud echoing roar. He climbed out of bed and opened his door, he heard screaming below and instinctively grabbed his rifle. He walked downstairs and looked at the front doors, it was banging as if many people were knocking on it. He heard a faint voice behind him, he turned around to see Viktor carrying a lupara crouched behind the counter, he was humming a song to himself and shaking in fear, there were many screams of agony outside. Pavlik walked towards the door and put his hand on the handle. There was a crash as the door smashed open, Pavlik jumped out of the way and rolled behind a box, he looked up to see many shapes moving quickly into the bar, they didn't seem human.
The shapes were almost transparent, he could make them out in the darkness but for the most part the shapes were simply a pair of floating eyes. Pavlik aimed his rifle and fired, it let out a deafening crack, he heard Viktor fire his lupara, there was a bang as a creature roared in pain, Pavlik ran passed the creatures and jumped over the bar counter, he looked at Viktor and nodded, Viktor nodded back and the two stood up and fired. Bullets ripped through the transparent shapes and blood sprayed out, but they kept coming. He heard footsteps upstairs and knew his friends were waking. The two of the fired several more shots, one of them jumped up onto the counter, Pavlik looked up as the monsters became visible, it had horrific tentacles where its jaw should be, he stared up in fear as it lowered its tentacles towards him, there was a loud crack as one of its tentacles was blown off, the creature jumped back in pain, Nikolas ran down the stairs cocking back his rifle, he ducked behind the counter with them and the three of them fired their rifles over the counter.
Mitya came running down the stairs with his Toz and fired several shots, he jumped behind the counter. They fired several volleys pushing the monsters back outside the doors. Sasha walked down the stairs.
"Sasha come here quick" Pavlik shouted as he saw glimpses of the monsters returning.
Sasha hurried to the counter but was lifted up into air and slammed into a wall by seemingly nothing, the four of them fired their rifles where she was just standing and blood sprayed everywhere, she crawled quickly behind the counter, Pavlik passed her his Colt and several .45 magazines. They fired over the counter as more of the monsters sprinted inside, blood sprayed everywhere as the monsters one by one dropped dead. They stared at the doorway, suddenly a stampede of boars and dogs poured through the door, several round mutants on spiny legs came in afterwords. They fired their rifles everywhere but there were too many of them, a large wolflike creature jumped on the counter, they fired their rifles only to have dogs swarm in from behind, Pavlik felt a dog bite his left shoulder, he felt blinding pain, there was a gunshot and the dog dropped dead.. Pavlik looked around to see everyone fighting off the dogs, they were overrun. His Geiger counter was clicking hysterically.
"WE HAVE TO FIND SHELTER" Pavlik shouted as they fought off the mutants "IS THERE A BASEMENT?"
"YEAH, ITS BEHIND THE BAR" Viktor replied "WE HAVE TO GET PASSED THESE MUTANTS"
"I GOT IT COVERED" Mitya shouted firing his Toz into the crowd.
They ran quickly through the openings they made, they ran behind the bar and found a trapdoor, they jumped down and closed the hatch as dogs bit at them. Nikolas locked the hatch and they collapsed in relief. Pavlik looked at the others, they had cuts and bruises across their bodies, Pavlik looked at his shoulder, it was bleeding really badly, he was losing lots of blood.
"huh... thats... not... good..." Pavlik panted as his vision blurred, he heard panicked shouts and everything went black.
Pavlik woke up, his left shoulder was heavily bandaged, he saw several bloody coats that were obviously used as makeshift bandages before they found the real things. He looked around to find the others asleep, they looked like they didn't get much sleep. He looked over to see Sasha humming to herself silently, she suddenly jerked her head towards him when she noticed he was awake.
“hey” she said quietly
“aren't you tired?” Pavlik asked
“I am but...” Sasha began pointing up, echoing roars were heard
“I know” said Pavlik “I am beginning to see a different side to this place”
“what do you mean?” Sasha asked
“there are two sides to every coin, the zone is no different” said Pavlik “one side is beautiful, peaceful, tranquil. It is a world of mystery and intrigue, a world of hope and a world that grants everyone a second chance... on the other side is a world of terror, fear, chaos, it is a world of despair and a world that shows no mercy”
“so how is the zone two different sides?” Sasha asked
“well its the first side, the beautiful side but the anomalies and storms are the second side” said Pavlik “a sudden change from hope to despair in a blink of an eye”
“so the zone is bipolar” said Sasha
“pretty much” said Pavlik “it doesn't know what it is or what it truly is capable of or even why it is here... kid of like me I guess”
“why are you here?” Sasha asked “you're a smart man, you wouldn't go to a dangerous place because your friends said you can get rich there”
“well yes I am here for the money but...” Pavllik began
“I sense an ulterior motive” said Sasha
“I rarely talk about this but eight years ago my brother went to work and never came back... he went to work at the lenin memorial power station” said Pavlik
“Chernobyl NPP” said Sasha with dawning understanding
“yes” said Pavlik “I came for the money but I also came in hope of some answers”
“and do you feel hope now?” Sasha asked, there was a deafening roar
“I feel despair for the zone has abandoned all hope tonight” said Pavlik
“don't worry, things will get better, hope will breach this storm” Sasha whispered into his ear before walking to a corner and curling into a ball.
Pavlik watched her sleep for a few moments before lying down himself, he slowly closed his eyes and drifted off into a sea of hope.
Pavlik woke up, there were shafts of light coming through the trapdoor and he heard shouting outside, the roars and screams were over and the sun had returned,. He climbed to his feet, it hurt to move his left arm. He grabbed his pistol and climbed up the trap door, he looked around, the sun was beaming through the entrance to the bar, it as a massacre, blood was everywhere and dead mutants littered the ground, blood trails led to other rooms, also full of dead mutants that had bled to death, he walked out the doors to find the street littered with the dead, mutants and stalkers. Blood stained the dirt, he saw several stalkers near the campfire, he saw the stalkers from the farm bringing in food, with a few stalkers from the village gathered round, he also saw Galileo for the first time out of his 'office'.
Pavlik walked to the group, they looked disheartened, they turned around when they heard Pavlik's footsteps.
"Pavlik, you survived the blowout" said Galileo "how?
"we hid in the bar's cellar" said Pavlik
"we checked the bar for survivors, it looked like a bloodbath" said Galileo
"we defended it for as long as we could but it was too much" said Pavlik "what happened"
"a blowout happened, and hundreds of panicked mutants ran straight into our village" Galileo said slowly, thinking about it
"a blowout?" Pavlik asked
"a radiation storm, and this was a big one, judging by my equipment it covered the entire zone, and the mutants came from all over trying to escape" said Galileo kicked a dead bird
"so now what?" Pavlik asked
"now we have nothing more to do than record the dead" said Galileo "I counted about twenty bloodsuckers, fifty three dogs, four pseudodogs, seventeen boars, twelve flesh, forty seven rodents and a pseudogiant"
"a lot of mutants" said Pavlik
"the list of stalkers is worse, thirty five, all by name" said Gallileo slowly "I will be in my office"
Pavlik walked back into the bar, Mitya walked into the room and turned around.
"Found him" said Mitya "don't wander off like that, especially when your wounded like that"
"I'm fine" said Pavlik "we lost thirty five stalkers and about a hundred and something mutants are dead, the rest left in the morning I guess"
"what was that" Mitya asked as Nikolas, Viktor and Sasha entered the room with relieved looks.
"a blowout, it covered the entire zone and drove all the mutants insane" said Pavlik
"really" said Nikolas yawning "thats great, this place seems roomier now"
"yeah and now my bar is gone" said Viktor looking at the damage
"it will be fine" said Sasha "you will get through this"
"I doubt it, who would want to visit a bar that looks and smells like a slaughterhouse" said Viktor
"shouldn't you say is a slaughterhouse" said Mitya
"shut up Mitya" said Sasha "how are the townsfolk"
"other than being insane cannibals?" Mitya asked
"shut up Mitya" said Pavlik "the few remaining townsfolk are enjoying their food shipment, their is now a surplus"
"Now what" said Nikolas slowly
"I say we go" said Mitya "leave here, find somewhere else"
"and leave these people to their suffering?" Sasha asked, clearly disgusted at the thought
"there's nothing we can do, this place is falling apart, we need more rubles, lets just find another town" said Mitya
"I agree, there's nothing more we can do, the potato farm is theirs, they can feed their people" said Nikolas "lets just go"
"fine" said Sasha "I don't like this but you have a point"
"okay well we should get ready, Viktor wheres the nearest stalker camp?" Pavlik asked
"there's on in a valley to the east" said Viktor "you don't mind if I join you? theres nothing for me here now"
"sure, we can use the extra gun" said Pavlik
"I'll get my things and meet you outside" said Viktor
They walked outside, Sasha went to Galileo's to buy a weapon, she came back with a Glock 17 and an MP5. Viktor left the bar carrying his lupara and a Coonan .357. They looked at each other and took one last look at the village, they walked out of the town and turned their back on it, they press on east, to a dark valley. They walked across the hills passing a several villages, buildings, factories and vehicle yards, they walked until they saw the dark path to the valley. They walked along the path towards the valley. They left a small village and are now heading for another. They walked for hours before they found themselves in a dense forest, it was hard to see anything.
"the plants re overgrowing here" said Viktor "I suspect we are near the valley"
"suspect, I thought you knew where we were going" said Nikolas
"I said I was here a week, I learned of this place from Stag" said Viktor tripping over a root, there was a loud cracking noise that did not come from Viktor.
"what was that?" Sasha asked
"Probably Viktor spraining his frail ankles" Mitya replied
"shut up, I heard it too" said Pavlik raising his rifle, shapes began to emerge from the bushes all around them, they raised their guns and formed a circle but were completely surrounded, men in black longcoats climbed out of the bushes, rifles raised.
"Well if it isn't the one who killed Knuckles" said the leader of the bandits
"who?" Pavlik asked
"the one you shot at the farm moron" said the bandit leader "what do we do with a killer like him"
"normally we recruit him but seein' as he killed are own" said a bandit
"we take him to the holding cells" said the bandit leader "and we let the boss decide"
"oh great" said Nikolas "were screwed"
They dropped their weapons and had their hands bound, they were almost dragged through the forest, when they finally left the forest they found themselves staring at a large valley, several structures and pig farms scattered across it, they saw a pickup truck waiting for them, they were loaded in the back and the truck slowly began to drive away, the drove to the main road to a large factory area, bandits were crawling all over the place, they looked to each other in fear, it was one of those places you doubted you would leave alive...
Meanwhile, something sinister was at work in the zone, and the world was none the wiser.
I'm back baby.