Welcome To Lazarus

Instead of a "BANG", humanity is passing away with the shuffling of dead feet, and hungry moans. Desperate men and women fight against the rising tide for the newly risen dead.Sometimes, though, the undead are not he most dangerous things out there. Civilization has failed the test; the only thing left is survival.

Lazarus is just one of many places where humanity holds on by a thread, and life and death come as easily as a roll of the dice.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Orpheus Reborn: Meat Wagon, Pt 2 (Zombie Fiction)

As Williams worked on the patient and called in, the police officer gave a shudder.  His body convulsed then lay still.  Williams tried to find a pulse, but couldn’t.  He relayed the info to hospital on the other end of the radio.  Much to their surprise, they were told to not continue live saving activities.  If the man had expired, they were to take the body directly to the morgue.  JD looked at Williams through the rear view mirror and saw he was as confused as JD was.  Williams pulled a sheet over the man’s face, so he wouldn’t have to look at his face and ravaged neck.  Blood quickly soaked through the white sheet.

        With traffic, the morgue was fifteen minutes away. They talked through the pass-through between the cab and back of the ambulance, as JD drove. Williams noted that the whole incident just verified that things were quickly getting out of hand in the city. JD had to agree. They were only about two minutes out and Williams was doing the paperwork, when he saw movement out of the corner of is eye. He glanced up sheet covered body across the compartment from him. In dis-belief he saw movement under the blood stained sheet. "What the??" His exclamation was loud enough to cause JD to look in the rearview mirror. He saw Williams lean across the compartment and grab the sheet. He pulled it down, exposing the body underneath.

        To JDs shock, as soon as the pulled back the body of the expired police officer sat bolt upright. Its arms reached for Williams. JD could hear a raspy growl come from the back of the ambulance, as the body lunged across the compartment for towards Williams. "Holy shi…" Williams bellowed as the body slammed into him, teeth gnashing. The momentum of the officer’s body caused them both to fall back out of JDs view in the mirror. Luckily, JD’s attention came back to the road. He cursed as he wrenched the ambulance to the right. In the seconds he had been fixated on the rear view mirror, the ambulance had drifted across the center line and into oncoming traffic. JD over compensated. His eyes widened as the ambulance barreled towards a parked car. He swung the wheel to the left, in time to sideswipe a minivan, instead of slamming into it full on. He saw a blur in the rear view mirror, and could hear Williams grunt as both he and officer flew to the opposite side of the rear compartment.

        JD’s arms locked straight and he slammed on the brakes. He turned the wheel, as the ambulance started to skid. From behind he heard a scream of pain and terror. He could tell it was Williams. That single thought caused fear to ripple through him. He knew Williams was not the type to do that. The ambulance skewed across the traffic lane and came to halt. In a flash, JD had undone his seat belt and was turning towards the pass-through. As he fully turned, what he saw momentarily shocked him into inaction. The officer and Williams were on the floor, leaning against the back door, with Williams on the bottom. The fingers of one of the dead man’s hands were buried deep into Williams left eye. The wrecked mass of the eye was spread across Williams’ cheek. The policeman withdrew his fingers and stuck them in his mouth. JD could hear a sickening slurping sound. The officer’s head then bent towards William’s neck. Williams looked at JD, with a mixture of shock and pleading. Williams’ head lolled to the side as he lost consciousness.

JD came out of his daze and lunged forward and grabbed the man both shoulders. He pulled the body backwards, trying to save his friend. The man’s body came away from Williams. As they separated, blood sprayed from Williams’s neck, covering the back and side of the compartment. As they fell back, looking upside down at him, the man’s eyes locked onto JD’s. His lips curled, showing its bloodstained teeth. In an instant, JD realized the look on the face was one of feral hunger. ‘Get away from it and kill it, now" ran through JD’s mind.

        JD backpedaled across the cramped compartment. He lost his footing of some loose webbing and fell backwards. The man’s attention had turned from Williams to JD. He fought to untangle himself from Williams’s limp form, and the sheet which had covered him, which was still wrapped around his legs. As the man thrashed to get free, JD scuttled back into the cab of the ambulance. As he watched the officer roll over and start to crawl towards him, JD’s hand fell upon Williams’s kitbag. ‘THE GUN!’ JD could feel its form through the canvas bag.

        Grabbing the bag with his right hand, JD used his left hand to pull himself across the passenger side seat. His back pressed partially against the dashboard, and partially against the door, he pulled the bag onto his lap. In actuality it took mere seconds for JD to unzip the bag, and remove the pistol. In JD’s mind’s eye it took an eternity. As he fumbled with the zipper, he felt a hand grab his leg. He looked down at the blue clad arm. He tried to pull his legs up to his chest, to get out of the reach of the man in back, but only partially managed. The man’s fingers clawed at his leg. He could feel the man pull himself forward. JD could see the bloody claws wrapped around his right calf. The man’s head came into view.

        JD yanked his leg free as the man’s teeth snapped, in an attempt to take a bite of JD’s flesh. JD’s left leg snapped out once, then twice into the man’s shoulder. This caused the man to roll to his side, exposing his chest. JD could see the damage that had been wrought on the man before. ‘There was no way this was happening, the policeman was…should be…is dead’, JD thought. Both hands on the pistol, he racked the slide, and thrust it forward between his knees. He pulled the trigger, twice. In the confined space of the cab, the roar was deafening. JD could see the slugs tear in to the man’s chest. The man was forced back a bit, but started to roll back towards JD, his hands searching for him once more.

        JD’s right leg pistoned out and caught the man in the chest. He pinned the body against the driver’s side seat, and pulled the trigger once more. This time the bullet caught the man above the right eye. A neat little hole appeared, as the man’s head snapped back. Microseconds later, a crimson spray erupted across the driver’s seat and door. JD could feel the hands that were clawing at his leg fall away, and as the body went limp. He could see bits of gray matter splattered across the upholstery and door.

        He turned a bit and pulled the door handle. He rolled out and quickly regained his feet. As he stood, he kept the pistol pointed into the cab, in case there was any fight left in the already dead man. He quickly gained his senses and moved to the rear of the ambulance. He could see blood smeared across windows. As he opened the doors, Williams spilled out backwards into his arms. His face was deathly white, from loss of blood, and he had a jagged tear across his face and neck. His left eye socket was a bloody mess.

        Williams’s mouth moved, as though to speak, but all the came out was a strangled gurgle. JD gently laid him on the ground. "Don’t say anything, we’ll get you patched up and to the hospital. Don’t worry, man, I’ve got your back."


Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Orpheus Reborn: Meat Wagon, Pt 1 (Zombie Fiction)

Author's Note:  There is some vulgarity in this story.  No worse than what you'd hear on TV now a days; still there none the less. 

  "Man, I’m telling you things are getting friggin’ weird. Some guy attacked Johnson, you know from bus 12, and bit his ear off. City Hall is trying to keep a lid on things, but it’s all coming apart. That red headed cop, what’s his name from Central Division, Tomlinson…whatever...he said that they were under orders NOT to talk to the press, and that that everyone was working a double shift, as of this morning. You can’t deny that business has picked up in the last forty-eight hours. And I don’t mean "full moon" busy, I mean "there’s some creepy stuff" busy."

        Jan Davidson, known as JD, looked sideways at the large man in the paramedic uniform behind the wheel of the ambulance they sat in. Williams was always talking about squirrelly stuff; alien abductions, government cover ups, etc. This time though, JD knew he was on the money. Things had been getting weird in the city, really quick. "Yeah, but what are you gonna do? You’ve got a job, and need the paycheck. We’ll just deal with it, like we always do." It was JD’s manner to take things in stride, even when things got hairy. Williams was always amazed at his capacity to remain if not calm, at least controlled under most circumstances.

        "It’s different this time. I’m telling you, I’m worried. I even got Alice starting to get things we might need if it hits the fan. I also brought this". Williams reached into his kit bag, which sat on the floorboard between them. He pulled out Colt .45 1911 pistol. JD sat up a bit straighter, tension visibly crossing his face. "What’s a matter Mr. Ex-Marine; afraid of a little gun?" Williams said, with slight mockery. Williams enjoyed ribbing JD about being a Marine, as he had spent 4 years in the Army.

        JD reached across and used his open palm to ensure that the pistol was pointed away from him and towards the floorboard. "I’m not afraid of any gun. I’m afraid that your dumbass is gonna shoot one, or both of us. Plus," he continued, "if you get caught with that thing in the bus, you’re gonna get both of us fired; in a heartbeat."

        "Don’t worry, that won’t happen. Besides, it gives me peace of mind. Promise me one thing." JD eyed him sideways and gave him the "what now?" look. "We’re tight, no matter what happens, we got each other’s backs, and when it’s time to go, we go together…I’m serious"

        "Ok, drama queen, now put that damned thing away," JD replied shaking his head in amusement. Williams smiled and did a quick press check and ensured the safety was on. As he was putting the pistol in his kitbag, the radio crackled to life.

        "Unit 14, multiple victims at 63rd and Prospect. They say that one is a police officer in critical condition. You’re the closest, hurry."

        JD keyed the mic and responded, "Roger that, on our way," as his other hand reached up and hit the switches for the lights and siren. Williams turned the key and put the ambulance into gear. Pulling into traffic, they headed towards their destination. Several blocks later, they saw the lights of police cars. As they drew closer, they could see police tape already up and a crowd gathering. An officer doing traffic control waved them past, as they pulled as close as possible to the incident site.

        Pulling to a stop, they both jumped into action. The two and a-half years they had ridden together had made them a well-oiled machine. They entered the small house.  There was an elderly black man slumped in a chair.  The side of his head was missing; he was obviously beyond help.  In the middle of the room, there was a large woman face down, with three blossoms of blood on here overly large smock.  Williams began to check her out, when a policeman intervened; “Leave, one of ours is in the basement, barley hanging on”, he said pointing to an open door in the hallway.  They moved towards it, stepping over a third body; this one missing the top of its head.

        They maneuvered their way down the narrow staircase and saw a group of officers huddled over another, who lay on his back.  JD shouldered his way passed, and they gave the paramedics room to work.  As they began stabilizing the victim, an officer explained the situation. A patrol car had received a call a possible abduction.  When they arrived they entered the house and found a small time thug wanted in connection with a recent murder.  He had viciously attacked one of the officers and the mother had attacked the other.  The incident ended when the second officer shot the perp and the husband shot the mother, then himself.

As the paramedics worked over the victim, they looked at each other. Williams frowned and shook his head. JD knew what he meant; the man did not have a chance, he had lost too much blood. He doubted he would last long enough to get him into the bus for the ride to the hospital. Blood frothed at his neck, with every ragged breath. His trachea was punctured and his aorta was shredded. JD was surprised he still had a pulse. JD didn’t like losing anybody, especially a cop, but sometimes he knew it was hopeless for the victim. This was one of those times.  They needed to move fast, as there was nothing they could do on site

Williams and JD quickly placed the officer on the stretcher.  Hurriedly they moved it up the stairs and through the house.  Time was against them as the man’s life slid further away.  They placed the stretcher in the back of the ambulance. Williams started to head around to the driver’s side. JD stepped in front of him and placed is palm on his chest. "Uh-uh," he said shaking his head. "I’ve had to ride in back the last 3 times and either do paperwork or work on the patient. This time, I drive and you fill out the forms." Williams acquiesced with little argument. He and JD shared responsibilities evenly, and it was long past his turn. He crawled into the back of the bus, as JD shut the doors and got behind the wheel.

To Be Continued...

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Lazarus ATZ Campaign Map and Resource Page Added

I've added a Lazarus ATZ Campaign and Resource Map page with a map and resource list to the blog.  When I get into the campaign proper, I'll be using it to track the movement of the survivor group(s), and trigger encounters.  I'll also keep track of what resources are found/used as time goes by.

Map of Lazarus
The map is actually a map of the town I live in (with modifications), and the names are for the most part actual names in the area.  The streets on the map represent major arteries in the big city of Lazarus.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Orpheus Reborn: Hunters and Prey, Pt 2 (Zombie Fiction)

It was a little after midnight, and business had been slow.  It always was when a storm was rolling in.  They had just finished sweeping, and Mr. Kim sat behind the counter, mindlessly flipping through a sports magazine.  Suddenly the front door burst open.  Two young black men charged through.  Instantly, one of them had a large pistol in his hand, pointed at Mr. Kim.  He froze, not out of fear, but rather out of habit.  Being next to a rougher part of town, Kim's Liquor had been robbed 15 times in the twelve years he had owned it.  Only once had things escalated to violence.  Usually, there was just  lots of cursing and the loss of maybe a few hundred dollars and some alcohol.  Insurance paid for it all, and it wasn’t worth losing his life over.  As long as nobody did anything stupid, everything would be ok.

The one with the big pistol strode towards Mr. Kim, while his friend took up a position by the first aisle, looking like he was ready to bolt in an instant.  "GIMME ALL THE CASH, B'FORE I BUST A CAP IN YOU, GOOK!" he screamed.  Mr. Kim's hands came up next to his head in a sign of surrender.  He flashed a nervous grin at the robbers, trying to not look scared.  The man  repeated his command a second time and thrust the gun in Mr. Kim's face.  He reacted by moving to open the register.

James watched as Leroy threatened the clerk.  The man had a nervous grin on his face.  For some reason, even though Leroy had complete control of the situation, James felt wrong.  He shook his head, trying to clear his mind; everything seemed to be moving in slow motion.  Suddenly, James was jerked back into normal time.  The bell that went off when the door opened had  just chimed.  James whipped his pistol up and drew down on the man who had just entered the store.  Leroy and the clerk both stopped and turned their heads to look.  The Korean stood there with his mouth agape.

In the doorway stood a white man in pajama bottoms and a torn tee-shirt.  He stood there, unsteady like he was drunk; one hand holding onto the open door.  He was covered from head to toe in mud; leaves caked into the mud.  His hands an feet were cut open, yet there really wasn't a lot of blood.  Where there was blood was around his mouth and down the front of his shirt, as though he had been feeding on something, recently.  To James's surprise, what appeared to be the jagged end of a  bone protruded from his upper left arm, which hung limply at his side.  As horrific as that wound was, it wasn't what caught James’ attention.  What transfixed James's attention were the man's eyes and face. His eyes were clouded over, and his face showed no expression.  James froze as the man's dead gaze swung across the room from James, to Leroy, to the clerk.

"Holy, F***", Leroy said as he brought his gun to bear on the man.  "DON"T MOVE, CRACKA, OR I"LL BUST YOU UP WORSE THAN YOU IS!"  James saw the man's expression change.  It went from blank to one of feral viciousness.  The man stepped into the store, letting the door swing shut.  He raised is good arm; his fingers making a claw.  He let out a moan that sent a chill down James's spine, as he moved towards Leroy.  "STOP MOTHER F******!" Leroy screamed, panic starting to cross his face.  As the man stepped closer, Leroy pulled the trigger on his gun, three times in rapid succession.  The three rounds slammed into the man's chest, taking him backwards.  His right leg caught on the corner of a snack rack, and he toppled back.  His arms flailed and drug the rack down with him, spilled chips and crackers across the floor.

NO!, screamed Mr. Kim's mind.  Instinctively he ducked down behind the counter.  He saw the man thrashing around on the floor; looking like he was trying to get up.  The two robbers stared at man on the floor; mouths open.  Through all this, no one noticed the two swinging doors at the end of the counter part.  A black barrel poked slowly through the opening. Leroy swung his pistol back towards Mr. Kim.  It looked like he was ready to shoot, again.

BOOM! Flame jumped out, as the No.4 12 gauge round left the barrel poking between the doors.  In his nervousness, Mr. Kim’s son, Eric had aimed off his mark.  The pellets spread out and caught the gunman high across his right thigh.  Even so, he was knocked back into the end cap.  He half sat, half fell into the display; a look of astonishment on his face.  Mr. Kim's son stepped through the door and racked the slide on the shotgun.  Leroy raised his pistol and fired off a round.  It hit  Eric Kim squarely in his left shoulder.  Eric half spun under the impact of the round.  One handed, he managed keep the shotgun trained on the robber.  Simultaneously, Leroy and Eric Kim pulled their triggers.  Leroy's round entered below Eric's right eye.  As it exited, it blew the contents of Eric's skull all over the swinging doors.  Eric's head rocked back,  as he fell backwards.  Eric's aim was better the second time.  The pellets from the shotgun hit Leroy squarely in the chest.   Even though they were small, the force of them all hitting Leroy from the distance of about 10 feet lifted him off the  display and flopped him on the floor.

Through this all, James had stood transfixed.  It was just like watching a movie.  The second round of shooting snapped him back.  He saw Leroy lying on the floor.  The man with the shotgun lay on his back, half way through the swinging doors.  He moved quickly to Leroy.  As he knelt over him, he could tell that Leroy was gone.  His chest was a bloody mess and blood trickled from the corner of his mouth.  His eyes stared blankly at the ceiling. 

The crack of the pistol sounded like a cannon going off.  James felt the round pass by his head.  The pistol barked again, and he felt a tug at his hoody as he stood up.  James saw the clerk standing behind the counter aiming a revolver at him.  "YOU BASTARDS!!" the man screamed as he pulled the trigger a third time.  A jar of salsa exploded down the aisle.   James raised his pistol emptied all the rounds in the magazine.  Three found their mark and the Korean dropped down behind the counter.  Quickly, James bent down and retrieved Leroy's .45.  He moved to the counter.  He looked over and saw the Korean sitting, back against the bottom of the cigarette rack.  A blood spot blossomed on the front of his white button down shirt.  The man looked up at James.  James raised the pistol and fired one time.  After looking at the man for a second he  turned to leave the store; panic was setting in.  As he neared the door, he felt arms wrap around his legs.

He fell to the floor, just short of the door.  Rolling half over, he saw the bloodied man that Leroy had shot clawing his way up his legs.  The man bit him on his thigh, sending pain shooting up his leg.  James began to pummel the man's head with his hand and the pistol butt.  The man's arms flailed, trying to grasp James.  Suddenly, he got a hold of James's left hand.   He drew it towards his mouth.  In an instant, his teeth closed around the last two digits.  There was a sickening crunch as he bit down.  James screamed in pain and looked in terror as the man began to chew on what moments before had been his pinkie and ring finger.  He brought the pistol down, almost into the man's right eye, and pulled the trigger.  More blood and gore spread itself across the wrecked store.  The man went limp. 

Frantically, James crawled from under the man.  Dropping the gun, he clutched his ruined left hand.  In complete panic, all James could think of was getting away from the mad house the store had become.  He slammed into the door and into the night.   Through the pain, he pushed his legs forward.  All he could think of was getting home.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Orpheus Reborn: Hunters and Prey, Pt 1 (Zombie Fiction)

The body made its way clumsily through the underbrush.  The well manicured lawn had given way to scrub brush and saplings.   The creature's arms reached out, using trees as support, as it made its way through the woods.  Even so, it still fell forward on its face several times; cutting and gouging exposed skin.  There was no pain; there was no thought; only a hunger that pushed it forward.   The wind was blowing, making the trees rustle in the night.  The sound of distant traffic could be heard over the noise the leaves made.  The sound had no meaning to the creature, beyond an innate knowledge that food could be found where the noise was.  Soon, the twinkling of lights could be seen.  Shadows played through the woods, as cars passed by.  The creature felt what could only be described as excitement; food was closer.  Its movement became more purposeful and agitated.

The woods suddenly sloped downward.  The creature picked up even more speed.  By now the wind had picked up even more.  The creature strained through the darkness and could make out a pool of light at the bottom of the hill, with two figures huddled together under it.  Its mind had no recollection of what made the light; it only understood that food was at hand.   It picked up its pace even more, careening down the hill.  Suddenly, as it put its foot down, it found itself stepping into nothing.  Its weak grip on a sapling could not keep it from pitching forward.  The body tumbled down, landing in a heap in a shallow stream with a splash.  A snap, and a twist and the jagged end of a bone protruded from its left arm.  The creature ignored the damage.  It began to struggle to its feet.

Leroy handed James the small pistol, keeping the larger one for himself.  James looked at it under the flickering light on the side of the liquor store, then back at Leroy.  "We really gonna do this L-Roy?"

"Yes, we is", was the reply.  Leroy had to speak up, as the wind rustled the leaves in the nearby tress.  It smelled like rain.  A gust of wind almost drowned him out completely.  "Don't go soft on me, nigga.  We's gonna walk in there, and I's gonna stick this gat in the Korean's face and gits us the money.  You watch my back, and make sure nobody comes in while I is takin' care of  bizness.  Now come on."  Leroy turned and headed around the corner of the building, towards the front. 

As the body made it to its feet, it could see the figures standing not far away.  They huddled together, talking.  The creature’s mind could not make that distinction.  All it was aware of was that food was almost within its reach. It viewed the two individuals as nothing more than prey.  It clawed at the muddy bank, pulling itself out of the stream bed; always keeping an eye on its prey.  Suddenly, the two turned and started to move away, out of the pool of light.  They made their way around the building they stood next to.  As the first one disappeared from view, the creature's actions grew more frantic and it gave out a moan of frustration. 

James stopped by the corner of the building.  He thought he heard something in the woods behind them.  He thought that he had heard a moan.  The wind had really picked up, and rustling through the tree tops was loud.  James nervously swallowed, maybe Leroy was right.  Maybe, he was going soft.  He had no desire to go back to lockup, especially on a two bit armed robbery.  He looked at Leroy, who had made it to the door already.  He realized that at this point, he really didn't have a choice.  He was committed and to back out now would forever label him as a pussy in the hood.  Loosing cred was worse than doing time.  He swallowed hard, gripped the handle of the .25 auto in his hand a bit tighter and headed towards the door.

To Be Continued....

Monday, June 4, 2012

On The Workbench 6/12

May was one of those months that puts truth to the saying "The best laid plans of mice and men often go astray".  I fully intended to go on a blitz last moth and finish a bunch of small projects. It didn't happen. Between the hobby cave flooding, due to torrential rains, family emergencies and obligations, and a temporary change in my work schedule not much got done.  When I did have time to paint, the motivation to do so was not there.  All month long, I managed to fully paint just 9 minis, with another 20 or so primed up with smatterings of paint on them.  Thank God for scheduled posts, or I wouldn't of even had any postings last month at all.  Oh well these things happen. 

The work schedule will be back to normal in a week, family emergencies are still happening (Mrs. FF is in Arkansas right now dealing with one), and the Hobby Cave has been (hopefully) water proofed.  I am going to try to get back into the swing of things this week (at least an hour a day), and see how things go.  The up side of it all is that I didn't lose anything in the flooding, I didn't add anything to the "pile o' minis" and I drank a lot of beer, and Caribbean rum (the Mrs. went on a cruise and came back with 5 bottles of the good stuff) last month.

The new items and projects that I added stuff to are denoted by an * next to them.

On the Workbench for June 2012:
(This is all stuff that is partially finished; in no particular order)
27 Gnoblar Fighters - After selling the metal ones, I decided to paint up the plastics to see what I could get for them.

21 x Khurasan Zombies - 21 excellent sculpts for 15mm zombie gaming
24 x WH40 Tyrnaid Termagants - I got these in trade for the Gnoblars I painted a couple of weeks ago.
10mm Ruins Project - I got a pile of old Epic plastic ruins, which are replacing the foam core ruins I was going to build and use for my Mech Warrior project. 
4 20mm Ruins - Plastic 20mm ruins I am building for resale. 
8 Acheson ATZ Minis - More minis for paint and review.
6'x4' Zuzzy Mat - Gaming Mat for my TEOTWAWKI project. 
15 28mm PA Survivors - 3, 5 man packs from Lead Adventure Miniatures 
18 Heroclix Figs - Figures for conversion into sci-fi and horror gaming minis
6  Pulp/Steampunk Minis - 6 figures left on the commission painting of some Fiendish Fabrications figures
20 Mantic Ghouls - Mantic Ghoul Regiment 
6 28mm Survivors - Obelisck Nighthawk gang
28mm Post Apoc Ruins Project - Ruins made from Gamecraft's Foamcore 6 story building.  This one is half done.
28mm Vehicles - 6-8 vehicles for my survivors
15mm Suburbia - Paper/foamcore houses for suburban Lazarus. 
50 20mm WWII Russians - Minis for a semi defunct NUTS! East Front project I planned
2 T-34/85s - Same As Above
Various Fantasy/Sci Fi minis - I have a box of old minis I use to try out techniques and hone my skills.  I have quite a few half painted figs that I'd like to finish

May's Finished Projects/Minis 
(I will be posting these up through out the month, as I get photos and such) 

4 x Acheson ATZ Minis - 4 down, 8 to go!
5 x GWFB Gnoblar Fighters - 5 down, 27 to go!

If you don't see the above posted here, now or in the future, you can check out Zero Sum Solutions for them.

Hedges - Quick and Easy Tutorial

Foam Padding - Electronic Packing material (free)
Woodland Scenics Course Turf (aka Flock) - From local Train Shop ($9.99/32oz Shaker)
Large Freezer Bag - Pilfered from Kitchen (free)
Spray Adhesive - From Hobby Lobby ($3.00)
Spray Matte Finish or Clear Varnish(not pictured) - From Hobby Lobby ($3.00)
Sharp Knife (not pictured)- For cutting foam
Disposable gloves (optional/not pictured) - Pilfered from work

Step 1 - Cutting The Foam
Start by cutting the foam into strips. The strips can be any size you wish. In this example, I am making hedges for use with 28mm figures. The foam strips measures roughly 4.5in x 1.25in x .5in. Cut them slightly smaller than what you want the final hedges to be; I will explain in a bit. Also, they don't need to be exactly the same size. Variation is good.

Step 2 - Texturing The Foam
Take your thumb and forefinger and start tearing chunks of foam off the strips. You'll want to do this along all the edges, and randomly across the flat sides. They should look as below:
 Step 3 - Applying the Flock
Now we need to turn the foam strips into our hedges. Fill the freezer bag about half full with the flock. In this case, I am using a 50/50 mix of Woodland Scenics Light and Medium green. One at a time, liberally apply each foam strip with spray adhesive. I wear the gloves at this point, because it can get rather messy, if you don't. It's up to you, though. Then take the foam a put it in the freezer bag. Give the bag a good shake, so the foam is completely covered with flock. This is where cutting them smaller comes into play. As it sticks to the foam, the flock will make the finished hedges that much larger than the foam. Place the hedges to the side to dry.
Sorry for the blurry pic. It's hard to get good help at 8AM on a Saturday around my house :-)

Step 4 - Finishing The Hedges
After the hedges are sufficiently dry (tacky to the touch is OK), liberally spray them with the Matte Sealer, or what ever you wish to use. I used Krlyon Oder Free/Clear Finish (the small can in the middle) that I had from a previous project. This will act to keep flock from coming off as the hedges are handled.

Basing the Hedges
At this point, the hedges are done, and ready to based as you wish. I usually base my on large craft sticks that have been finished as described in my Basing "how to" here on WTL:
Figure Basing - Basic Technique
The hedges can also be used as part of a larger display, if you wish
Finished Examples
Below, as some close of of some finished hedges (prebased) of different sizes:
w/ 28mm GW Space Marine
w/ 25mm Cowboy and 20mm Liberation Mini
All in all, it took me about 25-30 minutes (including drying times) to make the six hedges in the tutorial. This is a simple project, and is very quick and easy to do.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Diamond Tread base Tutorial

Here's a repost of a tutorial I did about 4 years ago on how to make make Diamond Tread bases, for use with modern and SciFi minis.

The Materials
You will need:
  • A Base (slotta or not) - I am using a slotta base in this example
  • A square of nylon window screen
  • Super/Krazy Glue
  • Tape - if using a slotta base
  • Hobby Knife
  • Nail Clippers
  • Sand Paper - not pictured

Step 1 - If using a Slotta Base...
you need to cover the slot. Take a piece of tape (I just used some packing tape that was handy) and cover the hole. Next, take your knife and cut off the excess, leaving the hole covered, like so:

Step 2 - Take the Nylon Window screen...
and lay it across the base. Take the Super/Krazy Glue and apply it liberally to the base. We want to cover the entire base. 
You can use a bit of scrap paper to smear the glue around. This will get glue down into every square of the Nylon Screen. You can see that I use two fingers to hold opposing corners down, while I do this. This will keep the screen from sliding around, or wrinkling during this step. Be sure to let the base completely dry after this step.

 Step 3 - Trim the excess screen away, by....
Flipping the base over and using your knife to cut away the excess. Try to get as close as possible; although you can leave some excess behind.
 After trimming with the knife, take the nail clippers and finish trimming away the excess. You should make the screen flush with edge of the base. After trimming the excess away, take the sand paper and sand down the edges. Use a downward motion only. Going up and down will cause the screen to fray.

Step 4 - Painting the base...
Is the last step. If you used a slotta base, flip the base upside down and prime it black. This will blank out the clear tape used in step one. Next prime the top with black, and dry-brush. I used a three color scheme that uses 1) Neutral Gray 2) Dove Gray 3) Sand. You can use whatever colors you like. (Note, I've since added Burnt Sienna for a rust effect)

Finished Examples:
Here are several repainted/rebased Clicky mini on home-made Diamond Tread base:

Based on a 1" Fender Washer
Based on 25mm Round Slotta Bases

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Orpheus Reborn: Homecoming (Zombie Fiction)

Travis White was feeling a little piqued. The convention and long flight back from New York had seemed to take a lot out of him. All the shop talk, and partying was just a little too much. He must be getting old, he chuckled. Shoot, he'd only slept with one hooker this time. His wife was out of town, at her mother's for another day, so he was home alone. He figured that he would sleep it off, and be fresh in time to go to work in the morning. He didn't eat dinner; even though there was a de-thawed roast in the fridge for him to cook. As he lay on the couch, flipping through the channels, he barely noticed the 5 O’clock news story about strange attacks on the East Coast. He had broken out into a fever, and was preoccupied with that. He seemed to be going down hill, quick. At 10PM, he stumbled off the couch: barley making to the restroom to wretch in the toilet. He tried taking some aspirin, but his hands were shaking violently. In the end, he dumped the bottle into his hand, and crammed the pills into his mouth; many spilling onto the floor.

Had he not been on the verge of delirium, he probably would have called his wife, or the 24 hour nurse. As it was, he careened towards his bed, knocking some items off the dresser as he went. His knees hit the edge of the bed, and he pitched forward, losing conscience at some point before he hit the bed. As the night wore on, his fever continued to go up. He sweated profusely and shook hard enough to make the headboard rattle against the wall. His breathing became labored. Eventually, though, it was nothing more than a hitch; barely noticeable.

Travis didn't hear the alarm, when it went off. When his work called shortly after 10AM, to see where he was, he didn't answer. He was close to death. Shortly there after, his body spasmed and he drew a strangled breath then expired. As his body lay there cooling, the Orpheus Virus continued to work its way through its system. After some time, the eyelids began to flutter and the hands began to twitch. The eyes opened. The body sat up and slowly surveyed it surroundings. Saying that nothing was behind the eyes that used to belong to Travis White would not be exactly correct. There was something there, but it was not human. What was there could best be described as a feral hunger. The body let out a low moan and clumsily crawled off the bed.

Melinda White arrived home from her mother's house late that night. She always went to her mother's house when Travis was away. She was a little ticked at him, as he hadn't answered the phone all day. She knew he was home, because she began to receive a busy signal late in the afternoon when she had called. She had given up some hours ago, as she was headed towards home. He could be an inconsiderate prick sometimes, but she loved him. As she pulled in to the driveway, she noted that all the lights were off, except for the glow of the TV in the front room. Travis's truck was sitting in the driveway, so he was home, probably asleep, after a couple of beers. She turned the car off and went to the front door, quietly opening it so as not to wake him, and went inside.

She set her bag down inside the door and quietly went around the corner. The couch was empty. She looked around quizzically. There was a faint glow from the kitchen, at the end of the hall. She softly tread towards the kitchen; expecting to surprise Travis. She rounded the corner and pulled up short, in shock. The kitchen was a wreck. Travis sat on his knees in front of the open fridge. Its contents had been spilled out onto the linoleum. Egg yoke, broken glass and spilled milked made a mess across the kitchen. She could hear a wet smacking noise as Travis put something to his mouth, with both hands. The tone from the phone receiver that had been knocked to the floor sounded distant.

"WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON HERE!!!” she loudly proclaimed, her face flushing with anger. With a start, Travis turned towards her. By the light of the fridge, she could see that he held the roast she had left him in both hands. Blood from it ran down both of his arms, and was smeared across his face. He chewed twice then looked at her slack jawed; half chewed meat and saliva running down his chin. He let out what was a cross between a mournful groan and a growl. Travis stiffly began to get up off the floor. Melinda stood transfixed, her right hand fumbling for the light switch. "Travis..." she said suddenly afraid.

Travis, or more rightly the body that used to belong to Travis White, made it to its feet. It stood 6 inches taller than Melinda White. It took a step towards her, with a hungry growl. The hands twisted into claws, and its lips turned into a snarl. Melinda's hand found the light switch and flipped it on. As the light came on, she lost her breath. Before her was Travis, only it wasn't Travis. The eyes were clouded over, and the skin had a grey pall to it. A look of savage hunger crossed the face, as the body lunged. Melinda was able to make a half turn to escape, before her former husband slammed into her. The momentum knocked her off her feet. Out weighing her by more than 80 pounds, the wind was crushed out of her lungs as they hit the floor. She tried to scream, but it was choked off.

Melinda heard something snap, and felt a sharp pain in her ribs. She didn't have time to dwell on it though, as that pain was replaced by others. Her attacker's hands raked at her; tearing her clothes and ripping her exposed skin. She felt a fetid breath on her neck, a mere fraction of a second before it exploded in pain. This time, she was able to scream. The two bodies tumbled on the floor, the larger one wrapped around the smaller one. Blood fountained in the air, as Melinda feebly tried to push her attacker away. Her throat and shoulder continued to be ravaged. Melinda's struggles quickly became weaker, as her heart pumped her blood out her torn arteries.

It took less than a minute for her to lose consciences. After she stopped fighting, her attacker went to work on her; as it didn't have to hold its prey. It went about tearing at the soft tissue on the body; ripping pieces off where ever it could. It stuffed those pieces hungrily into his mouth. After a time, it felt a change in its prey. The body it straddled began to stir. The eyes opened, and they were clouded over. Melinda White's former body let out an angry growl and clumsily swiped at the larger one's face. The attack had no meaning, as the larger body had begun to move away; having suddenly lost interest in its meal. It stood up and looked around the room. It spied the discarded roast sitting half eaten on the floor. It paused as though contemplating something then turned towards the back door.

Its hands fumbled with the door knob, and finally succeeded in opening the door. It was early spring, and the night air was chilly. It stepped out onto the back deck. Dead eyes took in the surroundings. The house was situated in a new development. There were no back yard lights to be seen in the neighborhood, and the close vicinity was quite. The yard sloped downhill and disappeared in to the dark woods. The creature cocked its head, as though listening. In the distant, there was the thrum of traffic. It had no idea what it was. Somewhere deep inside what remained of its intellect, though; it was able to equate the sound with food. Hunger arose inside it. It let out a mournful moan and stumbled off the porch. It trod purposefully down the yard and entered the woods.

Author's Note:  I changed the original title from Undead Vignette: Homecoming, to what you see here.  As I've written several of these stories, I decided to link them together.  Each one is separate; a vignette within the larger story of the Zombie Apocalypse.  They each carry the story forward; each one a stitch in the larger piece.  The name will denote stories born from the original Orpheus Reborn story.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Spring Recruits 2012, Convention Reports

Spring Recruits 2012 was held over the weekend of March 30-Apr 1.

I've made a series of posts on my other blog; Zero Sum Solutions, about it that you may find interesting.  There is nothing zombie related in it though.  This was the first time in the last 5-6 years of the semi annual convention that there were no zombie games to be played.  It wasn't for want of one, though.  I heard several people lament the fact.  I may have to run another one, next fall, just to represent the undead.

Still, there was lots to do, and much eye candy to be had.  Click on the links below to read the 5 part series:

Recruits Spring 2012 - Pt 1 - Highlighting a couple of vendors, whose products where just a bit above and beyond the rest at the convention.

Recruits Spring 2012 - Pt 2 (Ambush Alley BatRep) - BatRep of an AA game played during the first session.
Recruits Spring 2012 - Pt 3  (The Games) - Highlighting some of the games that were played/demoed over the weekend.
Recruits Spring 2012 - Pt 4  (FNG Vietnam BatRep) - BatRep of the THW FNG game played on Saturday afternoon.
Recruits Spring 2012 - Pt 5  (The Vendor Eye Candy) - Some of the eye candy vendors had on their tables this year.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

On The Workbench - 5/12

Didn't get much done last month; just a couple of projects.  Between work, family obligations, putting the garden in, being a bit under the weather over a long weekend, and what is becoming a really intrusive addiction to Modern Warfare 3, I only got 2 projects done last month.  This month should be a bit better, though.  Work is settled down.  The garden in and going like gang busters.  Graduations are happening towards the end of the month; they shouldn't be a hassle, though.  And best of all, I am back into good health and have a definite drive to get as many little tasks off the table as possible.

The new items and projects that I added stuff to are denoted by an * next to them.

On the Workbench for May 2012:
(This is all stuff that is partially finished; in no particular order)
21 x Khurasan Zombies* - 21 excellent sculpts for 15mm zombie gaming
24 x WH40 Tyrnaid Termagants* - I got these in trade for the Gnoblars I painted a couple of weeks ago.
10mm Ruins Project - I got a pile of old Epic plastic ruins, which are replacing the foam core ruins I was going to build and use for my Mech Warrior project. 
4 20mm Ruins - Plastic 20mm ruins I am building for resale. 
12 Acheson ATZ Minis - More minis for paint and review.
6'x4' Zuzzy Mat - Gaming Mat for my TEOTWAWKI project. 
15 28mm PA Survivors - 3, 5 man packs from Lead Adventure Miniatures 
18 Heroclix Figs - Figures for conversion into sci-fi and horror gaming minis
6  Pulp/Steampunk Minis - 6 figures left on the commission painting of some Fiendish Fabrications figures
20 Mantic Ghouls - Mantic Ghoul Regiment 
6 28mm Survivors - Obelisck Nighthawk gang
28mm Post Apoc Ruins Project - Ruins made from Gamecraft's Foamcore 6 story building.  This one is half done.
28mm Vehicles - 6-8 vehicles for my survivors
15mm Suburbia - Paper/foamcore houses for suburban Lazarus. 
50 20mm WWII Russians - Minis for a semi defunct NUTS! East Front project I planned
2 T-34/85s - Same As Above
Various Fantasy/Sci Fi minis - I have a box of old minis I use to try out techniques and hone my skills.  I have quite a few half painted figs that I'd like to finish

April's Finished Projects/Minis 
(I will be posting these up through out the month, as I get photos and such) 

11 x Khurasan "Not The Walking Dead" Survivors - I had get them; what with being a zombie fanatic
8 x GWFB Gnoblar Trappers - These minis were part of a FCM Challenge Trade

If you don't see the above posted here, now or in the future, you can check out Zero Sum Solutions for them.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Khurasan Survivors Painted

It took me longer than I wanted; my work schedule and Modern Warfare 3 kind of threw me off this week.  Ultimate, though, I finished them.  My figs are not nearly as nice as the one on the Khurasan site; still, I am happy with them.

I used a simple wash to finish them.  I may buy another set and give them another try.  I'd like to see if I could come close to the examples on the Khurasan site.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Orpheus Reborn - PT 4 of 4 (Zombie Fiction)

Security arrived moments after Stephanie’s breakdown, and the police arrived 5 minutes after that.  By the time the paramedics arrived, Mr. Owen had gone into deep shock.  The paramedics weren’t sure if he would make it to the hospital.  A second team treated Stan’s arm.  They suggested he go to the hospital, but he refused.  He had a terrible dislike for hospitals; feeling that they where sick people went to die.

The police detectives that questioned him were looking for answers he didn’t have.  They questioned more people as they arrived at work.  Everyone was in wonder that Dr. Goodson could do such a thing.  The police cordoned off the third floor.   Stan’s boss arrived, and after talking to the police walked over to Stan.  After shaking his hand, he told Stan to go home, and call in Monday. The police detective gave him a card and told him to call him, if he could think of anything else.  By 1PM, Stan was sitting alone in is 2 room apartment.  Stan sat there waiting for the shock of the day’s events to sink in.  By 5PM, he had felt nothing.  He actually had begun to feel anxious.  "It’s Friday, time to get going," he thought to himself.  After showering, he packed a bag, as he did once every month, and headed out the door.

Stan spent the night, and next day wandering around Manhattan.  He always enjoyed these trips, because he always saw something new.  After a long day, he went back to his hotel.  He was feeling a little ill, and wanted to rest, before "his girl" showed up.  Candi arrived at 8PM sharp.  He had been with her before and despite feeling ill, was looking forward to the things she could do with her tongue.  Stan laid the money on the dresser and then proceeded to partake in his monthly ritual.

The sex was labored.  Candi pretended that it as the best she had ever had, as she did for every trick.  She could not help but think that his heavy breathing was indication of him being sick.  When his forehead touched her chest, she couldn’t miss the heat caused by a fever.  Stan’s body tensed as he finished his business with her.  After a bit, Candi got up from the bed and went to the restroom.  Normally, she would take the man’s condom off, and disposed of it.  This night was different.  Stan always paid extra for a prostitute that would not make him wear one.  Candi knew the risks involved, but the extra money, and the fact that she could not have children made it worthwhile.
After washing herself, she began to reapply her makeup.  She could hear a racking cough from the other room.  "Honey", she called, "I hope you didn’t give me that crap you got.  If you did, I’m gonna have to cut you off."  There was no answer.  She finished and came out of the bathroom.  Stan had already fallen into a restless sleep.  She took the stack of money and stuffed it into her bra.  She found his wallet and checked to see if there was any more there.  It was empty; she tossed it back onto the dresser with a sigh.  Unknown to her, though, Stan had given her more than just a nights pay.  The virus from the Orpheus Serum, which the good doctor had transferred to him, was now working its way through her body.  Adjusting herself, she left the room.  There was a convention across town, and she wanted to make it over there, before all the horny conventioneers had blown their wads, so to speak.

Candi made it to the convention, and had at least 5 more paychecks that weekend.  By the time she was finishing with the last trick on Sunday evening, Stan lay wheezing in his rented bed.  His forearm was festering, and he had an extreme fever.  He was too weak to even call for help.  By the time Candi was at home showering, Stan was dead, ravaged by the Orpheus virus, and her weekend tricks were on their way home.  Several of the conventioneers had dipped into other women, and shared the present that Candi had given them.  As she read the Sunday paper that night, she saw an interesting story about a crazy man from Chicago, who had been pronounced dead at a Long Island hospital, only to get up and attack several hospital workers, before being killed.  She had no way of knowing but Stephanie Nielson lay dieing in a hospital bed as well.  By Monday morning, there would be another story, asking how it could happen twice, as a young woman in the same hospital had attacked and either killed or wounded several people.

The manager of the hotel Stan had been staying in would be dead by Monday afternoon, and 3 others would be in the hospital with bites.  Candi would read about the attack in Tuesday’s paper, but had no idea that Stan was involved.  On Wednesday afternoon, she was cursing Stan, as she had begun to feel a little under the weather.  She pulled a couple of escorts that night but hung it up early.  By the time she took to her bed several of the conventioneers had passed Orpheus to their wives.  One of the wives had additionally given the secret gift to her tennis instructor.

On Friday night, Candi took her last breath.  By the next evening, there had been reports of crazed, cannibalistic attacks in several cities.  One of those stories involved an escort worker in New York City who had attacked and killed 3 people and sent 5 to the hospital, before being killed herself.  News of these attacks was overshadowed by a major power outage on the East Coast and events overseas.  It wasn’t for another week that authorities began to become alarmed by these attacks. By that time it was too late, Orpheus had already slammed into humanity with a vengeance.


Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Orpheus Reborn - Pt 3 of 4 (Zombie Fiction)

At 07:05AM, Stephanie Nielson pulled it the parking lot of a squat 4-story medical research facility in western Long Island. She was running late, so she jogged up to the building and through the double doors.  Surveying the lobby, she saw a nice dressed man with a briefcase sitting in the waiting area.  He looked up with a smile as she approached; hand out stretch.  "Mr. Owens? Stephanie Neilson; I am sorry I am late, traffic was terrible." she said shaking his hand.

"It's quite alright, I understand."

Pointing to the elevators, she said, "Let's head up and find Dr. Goodson. He can give you a brief rundown of what he has and the sample."  They walked past a security guard who was busy reading the morning sports section.  They reached the elevators and she pushed the up button.  They made small talk as they waited for the elevator, which arrived shortly.  The door opened and Stephanie stepped forward, only to pull up with a start.  She had almost run into a janitorial cart.  A middle-aged maintenance man sheepishly said, "Excuse me" as he moved the cart to make room for them.  "Which floor, Miss Nielson?" he asked after they had stepped in.

"Three, please, Stan", was the reply.

"Ah, that’s where I'm going, too."  

Once the car came to a stop, the doors opened.  All three and the cart exited the elevator.  Stan, the janitor, stopped in the lobby area of the 3rd floor and started to mop, while Stephanie and Mr. Owens continued down the hall.  They went halfway down and stopped at one of the doors.  The door was unlocked, which was unusual, because the doctor had a habit of locking it if he came in before normal business hours.  She said nothing.  In the office were a number of desks and workspace, which are normal fare for a medical lab.  On the back of one of the chairs hung a worn jacket, Stephanie made note that it was the same one the Dr. had on the day before.  Had he worked all night, she wondered silently.  "Dr?" she said, only to receive no answer.  "He must be in back; in the clean room.  That's where we keep the serum", she said leading Mr. Owens around the corner.

They rounded the corner and faced a wall with three hooks.  From 2 of the hook hung smocks and clear plastic face masks, the third hook was empty.  They turned to face a wall, whose upper half was glass.  In the middle of the wall was a door, with a magnetic swipe lock next to it.  On the other side of the wall were several tables, cabinets and a refrigerator.  Several things struck them as odd as they surveyed the scene.  The first was that there was no one visible, from their vantage point.  The second was that the door to the refrigerator stood open and it looked as though the contents had been dumped.  Lastly, and most alarmingly there was a dark substance smeared, which looked like dried blood, across the window of the door.  "Omigawd! Dr.!" Stephanie said loudly.  Stepping forward she could see more of the room.  There was a figure crouched beside one of the tables, it appeared to be inspecting some sort of liquid on the floor.  With excitement in her voice she pounded the window, "Dr. Dr., what's wrong?"

The figure slowly stood, as though in a stupor, and turned.  Stephanie struggled to get her mag-card out.  She swiped it through the reader, and the door made an electric click.  She pushed the door open and entered.  Mr. Owens who had been standing behind her followed her.  As she entered the room the figure had made it completely around to face them.  There was blood down the side of his smock, and his right hand was bloody.  Stephanie took a step forward, then stopped as she looked into the doctor’s face.  There was something not quite right.  His mouth was agape; lips dried, and his skin had a grayish tone to it.  Most striking were his eyes.  They were clouded over, as though covered with a film.  The Dr.'s arms reached out, hands forming into claws.  As he stepped forward, what can only be described as a hungry growl came from his throat.

Stan enjoyed working the early shift.  It gave him time to be alone.  Slowly wiping his mop back and forth, he swabbed the floor.  Being Friday, his mind wandered to what he would be doing this weekend.  This weekend was his monthly trip to the city.  He liked his trips to the city, because he could see "his girl".  His girl wasn’t actually his.  She was actually any number of girls working for an escort agency that Stan frequented.  He called the working ladies of New York City "his girl", in order to not feel guilty about paying for sex.  Stan was shocked out of his thoughts by a blood curdling woman's scream, followed by the crash of glass.  "What the...?" he said aloud.  There was another cry, this time from a man.  Stan reached down and took the walkie talkie off his belt.  Pressing the talk button he said "Bob...Bob...get security on the horn.  There is something going on up here on three."
"What is it?' a crackling voice asked.
"I ain't sure, just do what I asked, you idiot" Stan snapped.  Holding his mop with both hands he cautiously went down the hall.  Once he reached the door Ms Nielson and her guest had entered he stopped.  He put his hand on the knob and took a deep breath. Behind the door he could hear the sounds of a desperate struggle.  He flung the door open and jumped through the opening.  He tried to look as fierce as possible, but it did little good.  In front of him were 2 men grappling with each other.  He recognized one from the elevator, and the other was Dr. Goodson.    He opened his mouth to say something just as the Dr. clamped his teeth on the man’s forearm.  Even through the man’s suit, Stan could tell it was painful.  The man threw his head back and screamed.  Dr. Goodson released his bite and sprang upwards.  In a flash he bit down hard on the man’s neck; blood fountained from a gaping wound.
With that, Stan sprang into action.  He swung the heavy end of the mop and caught the doctor across the shoulder.  The mop handle splintered; the head smashing glassware on the table across the room.  The blow was enough to knock Dr Goodson off the man’s neck.  Stan fought the urge to wretch, as he watched skin and muscle pull away with the doctor’s teeth.  He turned towards Stan, with what Stan could only later describe as "dead eyes".  A guttural growl came from between blood drenched lips.  He lunged forward, slamming into Stan.
Stan raised his arm instinctively.  The doctor’s teeth wrapped around Stan’s bare forearm; pain shot up his arm.  Terror gripped Stan.  In desperation he swung the broken mop handle up as hard as he could.  The sharp tip entered the bottom of the Dr’s jaw.  The momentum of the strike pushed the handle through the soft palette of the his attacker’s mouth and into his brain cavity.  Blood poured down Stan’s hand, making the handle slippery.  Dr. Goodson straightened and his grip on Stan relaxed.  Stan pushed as hard as he could and the Dr. toppled over the edge of a desk, taking a stack of papers to the floor with him.

Stan fell to one knee, holding his bleeding arm.  He looked at it in shock.  Despite the pain, the wound wasn’t as bad as it looked.  Much of the blood wasn’t his.  He scuttled across the floor to the man the doctor had been attacking.  He lay on the floor, withering in pain.  He was holding his neck trying to stanch the blood flow.  He heard a whimper to his right.  He turned to see Ms. Nielson tucked into a corner.  She had cuts and scratches across he face and neck.  On her upper chest was a round hole, which looked as though someone had taken a bite out of her.  He went to her and touched her leg, at which point she screamed and went into total hysterics.

Too Be Continued...

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Mob Rules: ATZ Campaign Day 8

“The natives are getting restless”, the watch supervisor announced to the ragged looking officers in front of him.  The men in front of him and spent the last 48 hours trying to contain the craziness that had erupted in the city.  The department had already lost a hand full of men; dead and wounded.  Many civilian had also suffered the same fates, as well.  “They want more action, and they want it yesterday.”

“Well what are we supposed to do”, replied one of the men, “with all these killings and attacks, were spread so thin, we can barely take care of ourselves.

“Word is that they want the city to arm them, so they can protect themselves…and that ain’t gonna happen,” was his answer.  “A CI says that a group plans on going to the Mid Town sub-station and demanding arms.  We are going to send what manpower we can over there and see if we can nip this in the bub.  The last thing we need right now is a bunch of armed civilians running around the city.  Baakus, take these 5 men, draw riot gear and get over there ASAP.”

Baakus nodded, thinking to himself, “Great”, as he tiredly rose and headed to the armory.

Special Rules:
Using the Mob rules from eh “ATZ: Haven” book

Setup Up:
The board shows the street leading up to LPD Mid-Town sub-station (left end of board)

Baakus and 5 other officers have set up barricades and formed a line.  They are equipped with riot gear, with one of the men carrying a tear gas launcher.  Baakus stands next to one of the patrol cars, so he can use the mike to try and persuade the gathering crowd to disperse.

Down the street a crowd has gathered around a burnt out truck in the intersection.  It is the only evidence that anything is out of the norm in this part of town, as most of the attacks have taken place in Downtown and Westside.  The crowd mummers, as it builds up the courage to move on the police station.

Turn 1: (Police 1, Mob Mo Move)
Mob Rep: 3        
Police Move:  Officer Baakus gets on the loud speaker and tells the crowd to disperse

Turn 2: (Mob 3, Police No Move)
Mob Rep: 2
Mob Move:  The mob mills about but doesn't advance (Pass 1, Mob Move)

Turn 3: (Police 4, Mob 2)
Mob Rep: 2
Police Move:  Officer Baakus again tells the mob to disperse.
Mob Move:  The mob moves slowly towards the police officers.

Turn 4: (No Move)
Mob Rep: 2

Turn 5: (Police 4, Mob 1)
Mob Rep: 3
Police Move: Once of the officers retrieves and readies a tear gas launcher
Mob Move:  The mob mills about in place (Pass 1, Mob Move).

Turn 6: (Police 3, Mob No Move)
Mob Rep: 2
Police Move: Officer Baakus again tries to tell the crowd to disperse and told his men to don their masks.

Turn 7: (Mob 1, Police No Move)
Mob Rep: 1
Mob Move:  Officer Baakus's words seem to have an effect, as the mob stops and mills about for a moment(Pass 1, Mob Move)
Police Move:  The police stand fast

Turn 8: (Mob 3, Police 1)
Mob Rep: 1
Mob Move:  The mob surges forward again
Police Move: Officer Baakus gives the word to fire the tear gas.  The officer takes aim at the front row and pulls the trigger. The gun goes "BLOOP" and a smoking canister sails down the street.  As it reaches the front rank, it exploded, creating a billowing cloud a acrid smoke.  The first two ranks break and head away from the burning gas.  The mob rep drops to 2.

Turn 9: (Police 1, Mob No Move, Zombies No Move)
Mob Rep:  The crowd disperses, as the tear gas wafts down the street (Pass 0, Mob Rep)
Zombie placement:  From the back room of the convenience store, by the Police Station, rises and surveys its surroundings.
Police Move:  The police officer with the tears gas launcher readies to fire a second round. 

Turn 10: (Police 4, Zombies 2)
Police Move:  The police officers stand watching the crowd dissolve away
Zombie Move:  The zombie makes its way to the front of the store, and peers out the window.

Turn 11: (Zombies 3, Police 1)
Zombie Move:  The zombie charges out the ajar front door.  Surprised, none of the officers could react in time.  The closest officer had his back to the door.  The zombie crashed into the officer's back; it's weight knocking the man to the ground.    The zombie clawed and snapped, tearing at the man' exposed flesh at the nape of his neck.
Police Move:  Roused from their shock, the men moved to help their comrade.  The man with the tears gas launcher raises it above his head.  With a grunt, he brought the butt of the weapon crunching down on the zombie's head, killing it a second time.

As tear gas wafted through the air, and the crowd disperses down the street, the police render aid to the man who was attacked.  The men who were still under the impression that this was just civil unrest looked in disbelief on the dead zombie.  Staring at the ravaged form, with its skull caved in, Most of them came to realization of what Baakus already knew; this was worse, something much worse.  Several of them made comments about taking their families and getting out of dodge, before things got worse.

Game Notes:  I am not sure I played the mob rules correctly, or if I just had some really crappy rolls.  The crowd never worked itself up to actually attacking the police, and I played Baakus in a very conservative manner.  I figured with all that was going on, he didn’t want to cause things to escalate, unless he and his men were actually in trouble.  As it worked out, he held the tear gas back, until the mob got quite close, and just happened to have a really low Mob Rep.

I may play this type of scenario, again, just to see what happens.  if I do, I am also going to to add in my intrepid film crew, as this is the stuff that sells big time on the major networks.

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