Amanita stared into the flames of the crackling fire. The plants that grew here on the outskirts of Mutantchester burned with a sickly green flame; she didn’t know why, and wasn’t sure she wanted to. Life was hard enough without worrying about things you couldn’t change. She hadn’t wanted to lead her gang this close to the crumbling ruins, but competition for resources was fierce, and a new gang like the Sisterhood just couldn’t compete against the larger, more established gangs. Eventually, hunger had forced them into the ill-omened place.
At first it had looked like being a straightforward scavenger hunt. They’d raced forward, managing to find enough supplies to keep them fed for at least a couple of weeks, but then Amanita had seen something that looked promising in the big ruin and gone to investigate, and Nomi had followed – they had been inseparable since they met three years ago. Alice had flanked right, and Joker had taken up an overwatch position on the left. When she had started taking fire, Amanita couldn’t even see where it was coming from. Before she and Nomi had been able to find cover she had suffered several minor flesh wounds, and it was only sheer good luck that had saved her from worse.
Skirting the side of the same building, Alice had nearly run headlong into the opposing gang before she realised how heavily outnumbered she was. Fortunately she managed to grab what she’d come for and pull back before they could mount an effective attack. Amanita and Nomi had finally made it to a covered firing position, but their return fire was ineffectual.Joker, however, had taken down one of the enemy gang members, catching them in the open with her sniper rifle.
At that point, things were looking good, and Amanita was confident of seeing off the other gang, but when Joker was knocked out by a lucky shot, the balance tilted against them. They’d already done pretty well out of the day’s scavenging, and it wasn’t worth risking what they’d already got for an unknown gain. Deciding that discretion was the better part of valour, Amanita gave the order to retreat, picking up Joker as she pulled back.
It had been a close run thing, and Amanita had picked up several minor wounds trying to scavenge enough to feed the Sisterhood. Nomi had done a good job of patching her up, though, and she smiled fondly down at the younger woman’s head where it rested in her lap, gently stroking her face. She’d done equally well bandaging Joker’s rather more serious wound, as well. Maybe when they met up with the trader tomorrow they should pick up some decent medical supplies – a combat medic was always good to have in a gang, and Nomi certainly seemed to have what it took.