Tuesday, April 27, 2010

American Apocalypse IV - Heartland - Chapter 3b

We cut back around the backside of the hill we were on so we could approach them from the road. No use in advertising that we had been sitting up there spying on them.  Some people might take that the wrong way.

We walked toward the town with me out front and Ricky and Loco back about six feet.  Ricky and Loco liked wearing their rifles so it looked like they hung off their chests instead of slung over their shoulder like I did. I understood why but I didn't care for it. They, and I thought it was a disadvantage, were totally focused on the rifle as their weapon of choice.

Myself, I figured if I was engaging people at rifle range then I had fucked up. I preferred getting up close. My range was 15 feet or less. At that distance it was personal which worked in my favor.  I wasn't a target then. I was a flesh and blood man who was armed and with in range of more than just their eyeballs. I was there. They could smell me, see me, and read me on levels they were not even aware of probably. The reality that death was just a split second away and looking straight at them was unnerving to most people. Not all, but most. The ones that it wasn't were the ones I shot first.

I was thinking about this because we had been spotted and the lookout was beating on a trash can lid with a piece of wood.  I noticed they had left their flag up all night. Well, one less chore to do in the morning I figured. From a couple of houses men came busting out the doors trying to dress while holding on to their rifles at the same time. Impressive it wasn't. I heard Loco snicker.  Not a lot of body armor in this bunch. While they rushed around I realized we were going to have to tone down the military look some. Out here it made us stand out to much. Camouflage was the wrong camouflage. Looking around at the villagers approaching I realized modified Gander was what we wanted. 


  1. There certainly is an advantage to looking the part of the weary traveler-- maybe a few goods to trade, wanting any information to be had about the road ahead. Scouts and spies shouldn't advertise their occupations.

    Intimidation is the stock and trade of an advance party. Everything about them should signal that whatever comes behind us is going to wipe you out, unless you comply now.

    I'm not sure where Gardner's group falls in the spectrum between a scouting party and an advanced guard. With this little hamlet, it probably doesn't matter. If they come upon larger settlements or better prepared opponents, how they present themselves could be the difference between getting good intel or dying without purpose.

  2. I'm glad to see a Gander Mountain reference. Did you pick them because of their position on special tax breaks?


    "Unlike its two larger competitors, Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's, Gander Mountain has achieved impressive growth without seeking targeted tax incentives from state or local governments."

  3. d^2,

    Yeah, I haven't figured that out yet. Intimidate or just be locals...

  4. Trey,

    No. I just like the company. Cabela's is good too... I didn't even know about the tax incentives.