Author's note: Well, let's call it a trilogy. This story may be completed much slower than the other two but I aim to get it done. If updates don't happen for a month at a time, someone yell at me. However, understand that SundayWinterChild is also editing these. (Please send a thanks her direction.) Also, since I foresee this to be a rather lengthy and complicated final installation, I'm opening up the floor for you readers. Basically, if you ever have a question for any of the characters, their back story, likes, what not, send it my way. I will either answer it in the story or at the very least compile them into a good interview at the end. This is so that you can help me develop the characters. I can't think of everything myself.
Anyway, what belongs to Bethesda render unto Bethesda.
...The memories of days long gone by...
"They call us the Liberators. That's Sven over there in the padded duster and flame tank. We call him Slightly Psycho Sven for a reason. The giant behind me? Carl Thompson, our heavy weapons expert. That's James and Julia Vanderbraun over there, both of them are medics but James is our marksman while Julia gives us electronic support. Myself? I'm Adam Anders. Trust me, if you're on my bad side, you won't see me and if you do, it's already too late…oh, and that's Rat over there. He's our mascot…"
"Are you absolutely certain this robobrain is set to safely watch over our children?"
"Of course I am, Julia. Sven is positive himself."
"That's not very reassuring, James."
"I only let him program the combat part of its wiring."
"And that's suppose to make me feel better?"
"…All right, you got me there, but I'm certain it's ready to go, honest!"
"What is wrong, Rat?"
"Where are you leading me off to- Holy crap!"
"James, what's wrong?"
"Erm…seems like Isaac got his hands on a laser pistol…"
"The boy is only two years old! How did he do that? Why isn't that machine watching him?"
"Because it's currently got its hands full making sure Lowell and Evelyn don't go near Isaac."
"Well, get over there and get the weapon out of his hands before he hurts himself!"
"I understand why you're hysterical, trust me I am too…I'm just trying to figure out how to do this without anyone getting hurt."
"Rat, why weren't you watching him better?"
"Hahahahaha! I figured it out!"
"Figured what out, Sven?"
"Irradiated napalm, Carl! Irradiated napalm!"
"…Why would you want irradiated napalm? Wouldn't the burning kill off anything before the radiation could do any damage?"
"Don't you get it? You get actual radiation from the fire and atomic radiation from the…nuclear stuff! It's double the radiation!"
"…It seems like I keep learning how disturbing you really are…"
"You know what's really disturbing? The fact I did not think of this earlier."
"Well, you got our attention. Is there a reason you wanted us all here, Francis?"
"Yes, Adam. Simply put, I've thought about this for a long time and I've decided to launch a pretty ambitious project."
"Which one of your projects has not been ambitious? This is the very same way you got together to send us to New York City."
"Yes, well, this time I'm sending you guys to Albany. We're going to rebuild the city."
"…Oh…well, that's going to be fun…"
"And I'm going to have to separate you guys on different teams."
"Why doesn't Rat have a name?"
"He does have a name…Rat."
"But what about a real name? Why doesn't he have one?"
"…I don't know…we've just called him Rat ever since we met him."
"But what if he wants a real name?"
"He seems perfectly happy being called Rat. Rat, do you like being called 'Rat?'"
"I don't understand this Francis. A year ago you sent us to Albany with a force of other regulators. You had everyone working together to rebuild the city. Carl was tasked with helping my wife keep the waterways clear around the city. James, Julia and Sven have worked on the infrastructure. Now you're grooming Mark to take your place."
"You're wondering why I've kept you on missions."
"Bluntly put, yes."
"Adam, I'll be honest with you. You're a good trainer and field leader. You have no interest in heading this organization and all your skills are in eliminating of targets. You're still an assassin through and through. Sure, you have people skills and that's why I'll send you on a diplomatic mission when I can, but none of them have turned up yet. Well, I'm right, aren't I?"
"…Yeah, you're right…"
"What happened to your hand? Why is it metal?"
"I lost my arm to a monster, that's what happened."
"Like a super mutant?"
"But how did you get a robot hand? Did you fix it yourself?"
"No, mother fixed that for me."
"…So mom really does fix everything."
"Sort of. Though occasionally I fix her dinner."
"So why did mom fix your arm for you? Did you ask?"
"You know…why don't you ask your mother that?"
"Sven, do you suppose you could somehow recreate an internal combustion engine?"
"Why do you ask, Francis?"
"Because that was a means of transportation before the fusion powered cars we see on the roads everywhere."
"But what is an internal combustion engine?"
"It's basically a large metal block with cylinders that allow for a contained explosion which spins a shaft that moves the wheels."
"What do you not understand?"
"Why would you ever, EVER, want to contain an explosion?"
"Clearly this conversation is going to go nowhere."
"Well, clearly the same must have happened to the internal combustion engine, as they stopped using it."
"Um…James…Julia…I got a problem…"
"Problem, what kind of- HOLY CRAP, Carl! You're leg is about to freaking fall off!"
"I gathered that, James…bad run with a bunch of pirates out on the river."
"Julia, hurry and get something to stop the bleeding and stabilize him. Carl…you do realize we're going to have to amputate this leg?"
"That's why I came to you guys. You think Julia can do to my leg what she did to your arm?"
"Oh good…cause now not only can I slam things with my hammer, I'll be able to kick things with my metal leg."
"Let's just concentrate on getting your real leg off for the moment."
"James, are you sure we're making the right decision?"
"What do you mean?"
"Sending the kids off to the Brotherhood? Having them become knights?"
"Julia…we've had this discussion numerous times."
"I know, I know. Yes, it'll be dangerous but it's safer there than here in Albany…but still…perhaps we could teach them to be Regulators or doctors or something?"
"And be stuck out here with poor medical technology and little protection?"
"I know, I know! James, I'm their mother. It's my job to feel like I need to be around to protect them."
"I love them just as much as you do, sweetheart, but remember, Isaac's 17 and the twins are 16. They can watch after themselves for a bit."
"Honey…we've taught them well. It's hard for me too but we need to get them to take off for a bit now."
"I know…I also know that you're holding me now because you know that makes me feel a little bit better."
"Would you rather I do otherwise?"
"No, but I'm still going to hate you for it. For the moment at least."
"I love you, sweetheart."
"I love you too."
"How many years has it been? We were once heroes. Now I'm reduced to an assassin, an exalted blade for hire. Sure, a good blade for hire but a hired blade no less. My friends and I have been spread apart, turned into teachers trying to salvage something I'm pretty certain has been completely lost."
"And what is that, Adam?"
"The world before the bombs fell, Alexandra. I know Francis has been working so hard to bring civilization back, trying to make this world a better place but…is it really possible?"
"Isn't that why you and your friends are known as the Liberators? You were working to make the world a better place?"
"Why does it seem like a fool's errand?"
"Seems like you have all been just the people for the job."
"You're welcome, dear."