As I said earlier, we didn't have much of a strategy to discuss, since we didn't know what to expect. So we went in and prayed for the best. As we followed the road that would lead to Nellis a man stopped us. He told us he had some information that could help us get to the Boomers - the tribe - without being killed. He'd only give it to us for a wager though. And I'm not the wagering type. I wished him a good day and prepared for the worst, as we went up the road.
As we entered the open area, filled with ruined buildings, we heard a noise. An howitzer being fired noise. We ran to cover on the nearest building, covered behind an almost totally destroyed wall. We counted the shots that were needed before they had to reload. We both had had experience on this. When the last shot was fired we ran to another building, because we figured we didn't have that much time. And we didn't. As soon as we hid the howitzer started firing again. We waited like before and then ran, this time towards the fence. They wouldn't shoot there, so close to their base.
When I got to the gate the guarded pointed a missile launcher at me - not a slick move - and started asking questions like who were we and how did we survive. After he got his answers, his superior, Raquel, took me to their leader, Mother Pearl.
Mother Pearl was probably only a few years older than me, but still adressed me as "child". She was a nice lady, overall. She said she was having trouble in some parts of the camp. I took the chance, if I assisted them then it would be easier to convince them to fight for us, the NCR. She told me that they had many problems and gave me directions to where I could help. I decided to start by making on of their younglings happy, just by listening to their people's history.
I went in the "Boomer's museum. Inside there was a painted wall and Pete, a little child. He was cute, heh. I asked him to tell us all about his people, like he was so eager to do. After his speech we talked for a long while about these Boomers people. They were actually very interesting. Their plans for the future were to restore a Pre-War bomber plane that crashed in Lake Mead in 1948 and use it to blow up "savages". That could be of use. I told them that if they attached ballasts to the plane it could re-surface and then they could get it. Pete said that that was exactly what Loyal, a man I was still yet to meet, wanted to do.
My next stop was the ill clinic. I knew that there I could be useful. The good doctor, Doc Argylle, filled me in. There were three injured men who got to that condition by fighting some giant ants that were nesting on their generator. Yet another problem I had to take care of. But first things first. I had to ampute a leg, treat an allergic reaction to the ants' venom and treated an infection. All in a days work heh?
Then I was off to meet Loyal. Frisky old man, probably even older than Mother Pearl. He told him I could look into the solar arrays that got broken They were directly above the generator, where the ants were. So I went there. It was farther than I expected, since it should be all nearby in a base. On my way there I found Raquel and she also wanted me to kill the ants, but I told her I was already on it.
We decided to first kill the ants and turn on the generators and only then repair the solar arrays. Best that way. We went in there and started shootin' ants. When we thought we had shot every single one more appeared. And this just repeated. Then I finally, not on purpose, shot one of the artillery shells. The ant died, but my leg got pretty messed up. I was able to patch it up, with Craig's help. He turned on the generator and we exited the building. We headed to the roof and I fixed the solar arrays without a problem. Then it was begining to get dark so we wanted to sleep. We reported to them first though. Raquel was still on guard duty and Loyal was about to leave his post to go to his house. They were both satisfied with my work and told me I should return to Pearl. And so I did.
Mother Pearl decided I could be trusted. She trusted me with her people's dream. By the morning I was to talk to Loyal about bring the bomber to Lake Mead's surface.
When I talked to him he gave the ballasts I had think of too when talking to Pete and sugested me to talk to Jack about a rebreather, if I didn't think I could hold my breath. I talked to Jack and he said he needed a pressure cooker to savage parts to complete the rebreather. So I went in the Boomer's kitchen to see if I found anything. Since I didn't, I left and hoped my old lungs could take the dive.
We left Nellis and headed South. The location was almost directly South of Bitter Springs, so it wasn't very far.
On our way there we found ourselves in deathclaw territory. Shit. We tried to sneak our out to the otherside and succeeded. Fortunatly. We did not have the firepower to deal with one of those, let alone the 10 that were around us.
Then we arrived at the place that Loyal indicated us, a dock by the Lake. It was swarming with cazadores. We killed 'em off. Then I had to go in the water "bare lunged" and attach the ballasts in the plane, which was at the bottom of the lake. Craig admited to me, kind of ashamed, that he couldn't be of much help underwater. I attached the first ballast on one wing and quickly went back up. My chest hurted just before I got to the surface. Many deep breaths. Went back down again. Attached the other ballast. Returned to the port, very tired. Handed the detonator to Craig for him to push while I recovered my breath. It worked, heh.
We headed north through Bitter Springs, to avoid the deathclaw territory. We couldn't avoid it, but luckily there wasn't any deathclaws in the area no more. Probably took shelter for the night. Lucky us,
Back at Nellis, I talked to Loyal at the hangars, about midnight. He said he'd send robots to carry the plane back to the base. Then I was off to report to Mother Pearl. She was very happy with my report, thought it was a miracle. When I asked about helping the NCR she didn't hesitate to accept. She was eager to try out the bomber plane too.
Me, Craig and ED-E are spending one last night at Nellis, before returning to Ambassador Crocker.