Chapter 1: Escape!

Date: August 17th, 2277 AD, 06:04

"Wake up! Come on, wake up!" The blackness of dreamless sleep was broken by a familiar, yet shrill voice. Groggily, the sleeping young man awoke. "Amata?... What time is it?" he asked, his voice droning.

"Come on, you've got to wake up!" the girl, Amata, demanded in a higher pitched voice, laced with fright, that got the boys attention, and set the hairs on his neck to stand on end.

"Huh? What's wrong Amata?" he asked, his voice losing it's groggy drone immediately.

"You've got to get out of here! Your dad is gone and my father's men are looking for you!" Amata hastily said.

The man's eyes widened slightly. "What do you mean my dad is 'gone'?"

"He's left the Vault! I don't know how, but he's gone, and my father… he's kind of gone crazy." Amata replied, and the fear she was projecting was palpable.

The man stepped forward, concerned look on his face. He realized that something more was happening for Amata to act this way. "I've never seen you so scared, Amata. What's happened?"

"It's Jonas, Will... they killed him! My father's men. They took him, and... Oh my God, you have to leave, now!"

Will's eyes suddenly went cold, and his mouth formed a tight line. "What? Jonas is dead? What the hell is going on?" Without another word, Will went to his dresser and quickly, mechanically began pulling on a fresh Vault 101 jumpsuit.

"My father's men think Jonas helped your dad escape. They caught him and brought him to my dad's office and they... Oh my God…" Amata had trouble keeping her composure, and started quietly sobbing. That sound drove a pinprick into the back of William's mind. "My God, they killed him... They just beat him, and beat him, and wouldn't stop…"

Will's hand suddenly slammed the dresser drawer shut. "Tell me who killed Jonas…" came Will's cold voice suddenly, in a tone that cut through Amata's panic like a hot knife through warm butter.

"I don't know! Some of my father's men. Look, that doesn't matter right now! You need to worry about getting out of here alive! Revenge will have to wait." Amata's fear and exasperation were building. She saw the look on William's face, a look he only mildly got when dealing with Butch Deloria and his insufferable Tunnel Snakes gang. This time however, she saw it in full. William was going to kill someone.

"Are you going to be okay?" Will asked, that cold voice made the question sound so strange.

"Yeah. Don't worry about me. I'm just sorry you had to find out like this. I know Jonas was your friend." Amata replied, calming down somewhat. "But we've got to go, now. My father's men will be here any minute!"

"You're right. I can't stay here..." William said as he began to pack a long duffle bag with supplies, clothes, food, water, and some stimpaks. "But where can I go? Alphonse can track me anywhere within the vault."

Amata's eyes turned downcast. "I'm sorry, but I think you'll have to follow your dad. You'll have to escape from the Vault. Listen... maybe it isn't any of my business, but didn't your dad tell you that he was leaving?"

William stopped packing for a moment to look Amata in the eye, and shake his head from side to side twice. "No, I had no idea he was planning to leave."

"Oh. I'm sorry. I'm sure he had his reasons. Maybe Jonas was supposed to explain everything to you? But it doesn't matter. I can help you escape. I have my own plan!"

"Ok. Escape the Vault. How?" William asked getting back to packing.

"Listen. There's a secret tunnel that leads directly from my father's office to the exit. You'll have to hack the computer in his office to open it." Amata then reached into her pocket, and produced a matchbox, handing it to William, who opened it to reveal several sets of bobby pins. She also handed him a small flathead screwdriver. "Use these to get into his office. That's how I always get in." Amata explained with a slight smirk at the admission of breaking into her father's office.

William returned the smirk slightly, the only break from that cold mechanical glade, as he pocketed the items himself. He then went to his desk to collect the last items he'd need. His old BB gun, a small canister of ball bearing pellets, and his baseball bat.

"Oh, one more thing. I stole my father's pistol. I hope you won't need it, but you'd better take it just in case." Amata said as she produced the weapon.

William looked at the N99 10mm semi-automatic pistol and frowned slightly. "No, you keep it. You may need it more than I do." he said to Amata. "I have all the firepower I need right now." he added as he cocked the BB gun and holstered it alongside the duffle bag, and had the baseball bat at the ready.

"Well... okay. I guess it may come in handy if I run into any Radroaches. All right. I'll try to meet you at the exit. Watch out for security. Good luck!" Amata said before taking off into the corridor and disappearing.

William looked out into the corridor, before taking a breath, and looking at the hickory wooden bat in his hand, he sighed, before stepping out of the only home he'd ever known.

However, as soon as he got 2 steps from his front door, William saw the first of the Overseer's men round the corner.

"There he is! Hold it right there!" shouted security officer John Kendall.

Will's hand tightened on the grip of his bat as he prepared for the first real fight of his life, and not some scuffle with Butch.

But, just as he was about to rush Kendall, the security guard shrieked. "Criminey, more roaches!" he yelled, and started swinging his baton into a trio of small Radroaches as they started biting into his legs.

Will took advantage of the distraction. He ran up the corridor like a bat out of hell, and while stomping on one of the oversized insects, he rammed his shoulder into Officer Kendall's side, knocking the lightly armored man over. With two quick thrusts of his bat, Will dispatched the roaches, and approached Kendall. It was then that the officer realized he no longer had his baton in his hand.

William wasted no time. He grabbed John by the collar of his vault suit and pinned the man against the wall. "Did you kill Jonas?" came Will's question, in a voice so cold and malicious, John would swear he heard the devil's rage behind this 19 year old's voice.

"N… No! No I didn't!" Kendall protested his innocence.

Will reared John back, before slamming him into the steel wall again. "Then who did?" Will asked once the echo subsided.

"Stevie! It was Officer Stevie Mack! He beat Jonas to death under orders from the Overseer!" Kendall said loudly.

"Thank you." William replied, before jabbing the point of his bat into Kendall's stomach, driving the wind out of him and rendering him unconscious despite the security armor he wore. The unconscious Officer Kendall slid to the ground in a heap, and Will quickly rummaged through what he could of Kendall's inventory, but only having time to take the security helmet and the baton. Will placed the baton through one of the utility hoops on his vault suit belt, and proceeded down the corridor towards the atrium.

As William passed the communal restrooms, he saw the last person he wanted or expected to see during this crisis. Butch DeLoria, wearing that obnoxious jacket, and greasy hair slicked and combed into a ostentatious pompadour. However, this time Will saw the absolute fear on the bully's face. As soon as Butch saw Will, he ran up to him in a rushed panic. "You gotta help me!" Butch gasped out in desperation. "My mom's trapped in there with the Radroaches!"

Will was half tempted to leave Ellen DeLoria to her fate if only to spite Butch for all the years of abuse and bullying, but Will wasn't a spiteful person. Besides, he didn't have time for personal self gratification. "Come on. Let's go see if we can help her." Will said, and made to move towards the DeLoria residence.

"No, I can't go back in there. It's... it's dark, and there's Radroaches." Butch said sadly, fearfully.

Will looked at Butch like he had grown a second head for only a moment before he stated flatly, "Don't worry, Butch. I'll get your mom out of there." He then went past the former bully as he seemed elated and relieved.

"Oh my God, thank you. I didn't know what to do. You're the best!"

Will wasted no time on further pleasantries, and quickly stormed Ellen's room, where the screaming woman was being slowly nibbled away by a trio of the insects. "What's happening? Ow! That hurts!" Ellen slurred out drunkenly as one of the bugs but into her forearm as she feebly attempted to protect her face and head.

Will immediately stepped on one of the insects, and it's head exploded in a spray of yellow and green gore. A swing of the bat at a second bug sent the carapace careening into the cubicle window minus its head and legs. The final bug was pinned down by the point of the bat, where it struggled to get out from impotently. The struggle didn't last long, as William slowly applied pressure, and the creature's body cracked, before exploding in gore.

Ellen stood up and looked around the desecrated room in a drunken haze. "Where did those ... things... come from? Ugh. I need another drink." she slurred out and started looking through the various bottles around the floor, until she found an unopened bottle of vodka. She then turned and as if noticing for the first time that William had helped her with the Radroaches, she said "Come on, sit down and have a drink with me."

Those words seemed to be enough to get Butch to finally man up and open the door. "We did it! My mom's gonna be okay! You're the best friend I've ever had, man!" Butch blurted out in happy relief. "Hey, I know it isn't much, but I want you to have my Tunnel Snakes jacket. Go ahead, take it."

William took the leather jacket, and with a slight nod, he shrugged the thing on, before placing the shoulder strap of the duffle bag back into place. With a slight wave, William resumed his trek out of the vault.

Following the corner to the diner, Will could see into the darkened eatery. The body of Mrs. Taylor lay splayed out on the tiled floor. Surrounding the body, and nibbling on it were more Radroaches.

Unholstering his BB gun, William took quick aim, and fired into the brain pans of the bugs in rapid succession. With the roaches now dead, he examined Mrs. Taylor's body. There was nothing he could do. Mrs. Taylor apparently died of a heart attack, and the bugs were merely scavenging her corpse. With a sigh, he stood up, and continued down the corridor.

The next area was the hallway that led to the atrium upstairs. While climbing the stars, William could hear shouting, and more bugs screeching and attacking.

When Will had finished climbing the stairs, he could see Andy, the resident robot torching groups of the roaches with his flame unit, protecting Stanly, while Officer Herman Gomez was busy swatting stray bugs with his baton. Will watched as the large group of the detestable insects was dispatched roughly, then Gomez came up to Will and said "You're lucky it was me who found you Will, the others won't be so forgiving. I don't know what you're up to, and I don't wanna know. Just clear out of here, and I'll pretend I never saw you."

Will nodded his head. "Thanks, Officer Gomez. I always liked you."

"It's a real shame it's come to this" Gomez said with some sadness in his voice. "I can't believe what they did to Jonas… Officer Mack was just out of control… But your a good kid. You didn't do anything to deserve this. Go, find your dad, if you can."

Will nodded again, and proceeded towards the Atrium. However, this is where things made a turn for the worse. "We should just go back to our quarters" came a woman's voice.

"It's our only chance, don't you see? We're getting out of here, just like the doctor. I'm not going to let anyone stop us." came a man's reply. Then he heard footsteps receding.

"Tom! Be careful!" shouted the woman. "It's me! Tom Holden! Just let me through!" came Tom's voice, a little more distant. "What are you doing? Are you crazy? We'll shoot! Dammit, Tom." A new voice, far more distant and echoed sounded. Then Will heard the popping sound of gunfire.

"Tom! No!" came the woman's voice, followed by more pops, and then silence. Will's blood turned to that cold ire again. Two of his fellow vault dwellers had just been murdered by people with guns. That meant Security. And that meant…

"Damn you Alphones!" Will hissed through clenched teeth. He crouched down low, and snuck down between the benches and overturned tables. He looked over the lip of one of the tables down the corridor that lead to the vault exit. There they were, two of them, standing over the now deceased bodies. William calmly and slowly shouldered his BB gun. This distance needed a better shot than what he used earlier on the roaches, but he had to make the shot. Otherwise he'd get shredded by their 10mm pistols.

He gripped his run and took in a deep breath before holding it, and activating his Pipboy's VATS. He took careful aim at each of ge guard's main hands, the one holding the weapons. And squeezed off two lightning quick shots. The aim flew true, as the BB rounds disarmed the officers in quick succession and a sharp yelp of pain from each one.

Darting over the table, Will slid his baseball bat into his right hand, and the security baton went into his left. And with a vicious swing, the hickory stick smashed the face visor of Officer O'Brian, sending shards of plastic all over the floor, along with flecks of blood from his now broken nose. Meanwhile, Officer Richards got worse, when Will jammed the tip of the security baton into his windpipe, crushing his larynx, and sent the man choking to his death, unable to breath.

William bent down and took hold of one of the N99 10mm pistols. He calmly pulled the slide back to check the chamber, and it was indeed loaded. Letting the slide go back into place, he aimed the weapon at O'Brian. Will's cold eyes spoke of the officer's fate before he even pulled the trigger. Will fired a pair of rounds into O'Brian's skull, before rummaging through the bodies. He found a few clips worth of rounds for both pistols, some stimpaks and little else of value. He returned to the atrium from the tunnel. It would seem Amata's plan was the only way now.

Will ascended the stairs to the upper atrium through a pair of blocked doors. He had both pistols in his hands now, and was picking off the occasional Radroach as he made his way to the catwalk. Once there, the corridor to the security offices and the Overseer's personal area came into view. A sudden dull thumping on tempered glass got his attention, along with a heavily muffled voice.

"You! This is your fault! You and your stupid father! He had to go and leave, didn't he? He had to mess things up for everybody!" Allen mack shouted through the glass, while beating his fists against it. "Guards! Guards, he's over here! The doc's stupid kid is over here! He's trying to leave the Vault! Don't let him get away!"

Will sneered in open contempt, and continued to walk into the security maintenance area. More radroaches awaited Will, along with another dead Vault Dweller. This time is was engineer Floyd Lewis. The poor guy got ambushed by the roaches. He was a wiz at fixing stuff, but not so good at fighting. He never stood a chance. Will knelt next to Floyd's body, took off his glasses, and closed his eyes. When he stood back up, he saw Security Chief Hannon approach. With a sigh, Will raised the gun in his right hand, and blew out Hannon's knees, sending the chief of security tumbling to the ground in pain.

"I've no time for you chief. You're not the ones I'm looking for." Will said with a chilly tone that froze Hannon's blood cold. He knew Will was going to kill someone today, not realizing that two of his men were already dead.

When will rounded the next corner, and the security office came into view, he could hear Amata, her father, and Officer Stevie Mack inside. Good, both targets and a friend he needed to rescue. Will crouched down low so as not to be seen through the window, and he could also overhear anything he needed to.

"I told you, I don't know anything!" Amata said in a panicked voice.

"Be reasonable, Amata. Officer Mack may enjoy this, but I don't. Just tell us where to find your friend, so we can talk to him." Alphonse replied.

"He's my friend. I was worried about him. What does he have to do with any of this anyway?"

"Probably nothing. Which is why you need to tell me where he is, so I can talk to him." There was a slight pause, before the Overseer's tone changed. "Again." he ordered.

Then, Mack's voice came to Will. "You need to learn some respect."

"Just get away from me! I don't want to shoot you but I will. I swear I will!" Amata's voice cut through Stevie's intimidation tactic as she drew the gun he told her to keep. Will frowned, she didn't need blood on her hands. Not like him, even if Mack deserved it. But Mack would find justice at Will's hand anyway.

He took the safeties off both pistols, and opened the security office door.

"That will do, 'Officer' now get away from Amata." Will said, his voice coated with venom. Alphonse backed into a corner, while Amata, relieved at not having to kill anyone, took off like a rocket down the corridor toward her quarters. Meanwhile, Stevie seethed like a rattlesnake at being caught by this punk flat footed!

"You fucking little punk! I'm going to…"

"Officer Stevie Mack" William interrupted, his eyes went cold like a pair of green icicles. "You murdered Jonas without reason or just cause. For that reason, I'm going to kill you."

The Overseer spoke up "Jonas was dealt with on my orders!" he said.

"You'll get your turn, Alphonse, until then, you'd better shut the fuck up, and listen." Will replied, not taking his eye off of Stevie, whose eye twitched madly when he called the Overseer by his name.

But William no longer cared. He reared his right hand back, before pistol whipping Stevie across the face, sending the security guard to the ground right in front of the Overseer.

With one gun for each of them, William pressed his boot right between Officer Mack's shoulder blades.

"Now, the only reason you continue to breath, 'Overseer' is because of Amata. So, you should thank her after I leave this place. Just give me the keys to your office and your password. Then I'll be going." Will said with a flat voice.

Alphonse's voice took on a mocking ton, to his credit. "Oh, is that all? Is there anything else I can get you while you're here?" he drawled out in false pleasantries. "You'll get nothing from me. I'll die before I see the safety of the Vault compromised again."

"You're right. You will die if you don't give me that password. In fact, I'm pretty sure I'll kill everybody in this place." Will warned. Then a sick and twisted grin crossed his features "Amata trusts me. If you don't give me what I want, I'll hurt her. Bad. She'll be the first one to fall."

That wiped the smugness off of the Overseer's face.

"Then again…" Will said as he seemed to think about something, before he pulled his boot up, before powering it down in a vicious stomp on the back of Stevie Mack's head. Officer Mack's head exploded all over the overseer's shins and boots. The event was horrendous!

"My God, you're a coldblooded little shit, aren't you? I think you'd actually do it!" Alphonse said, clearly shaken. "Here. Take them and leave the Vault. I'll have you shot on sight if you ever come back."

Will took the card and key from Alphonse roughly. "As long as you don't give me a reason to come back, then I will be quite happy out of your little hobbit hole." he snapped back. Will then started ransacking the security lockers. He took out a fresh set of security armor, and all the ammo he could find for the pistols, as well as the medical supplies. Once he'd finished packing back up, he gave one last disgusted sneer at the Overseer, to which Alphonse reciprocated in kind.

Rounding the last corner to the overseer's office saw the body of Jonas on the ground, lying in a pool of his own blood. His face and hands were covered with purple bruises from the baton Officer Mac had beat him a sigh, William knelt down next to the corpse of a friend again. He manually closed Jonas' eyes. "Rest now. I killed Stevie for what he did." Will then saw that Jonas' hand was clutched around, what looked like a holotape. And he remembered what Amata had said earlier.

"Maybe Jonas was supposed to explain everything to you?" Will grimaced.

"Thank you Jonas. Goodbye" he said, standing up.

Will heard Amata crying from her apartment. And as soon as he approached her, Amata threw her arms around Will's neck, surprising him. "Thank God you came along when you did. I don't know what I might have done…" she quickly sobbed into his shoulder. She pulled back and quickly thrust another pistol into his hands. "Here. Take the gun. I don't want to find out what I'd do if I still had the gun when my father comes looking for me. You'd better get out of here. I'll try to meet you at the vault door. If I don't make it... good luck."

"You too." Will said a little woodenly, unable to get a word in before Amata disappeared again. He looked at the gun, before pocketing it and turning to Alphonse's office.

He used the overseer's office key to get in easily enough, then he used the password to crack the computer. What he downloaded was astonishing. If Will wasn't in a hurry, he'd go over the files with a fine toothed comb, but instead, he downloaded them into his Pipboy's memory for later examination. He then released the safety on the secret access tunnel, and watched as the Overseer's desk rise up, and part the ground into a stairway leading into a tunnel.

Killing a few more radroaches in this disused tunnel, Will made his way to the Vault Door chamber. There were a few rooms leading off from here, but all William was interested in now was the massive cogwheel shaped door. There was a control terminal console mounted on what looked like a metal lectern by the catwalk leading to the door itself. Will looked at the controls, then at the door, before he threw down the lever.
Immediately, orange strobe lights and a siren started sounding. A large metal arm descended from the roof, fitting itself to the door, even as Amata appeared. "Oh my God... you actually opened it…"

Will smiled. "I couldn't have done it without your help."

Amata smirked sheepishly, but it faded to sadness and admiration. "No, you didn't need me. If anyone can survive out there, it's you."

"Why don't you come with me?" Will asked.

"It's tempting, but... my place is here. The Vault needs me more than you do. I'm the only one who has a chance to talk some sense into my father. Listen, if you do catch up with your dad, tell him I'm sorry. For... you know, Jonas, and my father, and everything. Goodbye." Amata explained, sad tears in her eyes, as she hugged Will one more time.

"Goodbye, Amata. We will meet each other again someday." Will said, and in a strange way, the conviction of his statement reassured Amata that he would indeed come back.

But, for now, no further words need be spoken. William Mitchell disappeared into the darkness of the rocky tunnel beyond the door of Vault 101, and once he could no longer be seen, Amata pushed the lever back up, resealing the vault.

~Chapter End~


Author's Notes: Howdy people! Darkstorm is back! Now, I anticipate many questions, I'll try to answer as many as I can. First, when I play any bethesda game, I tend to utilise a lot of mods, so don't be too thrown off here. Secondly, I am mixing and matching all the techs from the Fallout games. I do this to create some kind of mechanical consistency in the world. Same for when we do eventually go to Skyrim. But please, don't let that deter you all, read, and then review, leave a comment, let me know what you all thought! I'd love to hear constructive criticisms, it helps me improve! :)