Alright, first crossover! I love Fallout, and I adore Legend of Korra, so I thought, why not see if they're two great tastes that taste great together? Anyway, without further ado, I present…
The Price of Failure
Part I: Separate Threads
Mako's day could have been going a bit better, all in all. He was used to the relatively cool climate of Republic City; wherever he was now, it was hot and dry. A firebender though he was, he preferred the cold to suffocating heat. The manacles around his wrists were staring to chafe a bit too.
He grasped the iron bars of the cell he was being held in and rattled them as hard as he could.
"Hey!" he shouted. "You wanna tell me why I'm in here? Or are you going to let me dehydrate just a bit more?"
A man was sitting in a chair across from the cell Mako was imprisoned in. He wore a heavy-looking tan uniform with a bandolier slung across his chest, along with a pith helmet on his head and a pair of dusty goggles around his neck. He looked at Mako with the same impassive face he had shown the entire time he had been sitting there.
"Look, kid, as soon as Jackson gets in here, we can get this all sorted out, and I'd wager you can leave. Until then, just keep your cool and sit down." He cocked an eyebrow at Mako. "And let me tell you something- if you feel like getting uppity and goin' all burning man or whatever, don't. We want information, but the NCR doesn't take kindly to assaulting its soldiers. And personally, I wouldn't lose a wink of sleep if we filled you with lead."
Mako grimaced, and reluctantly sat back down. Going "burning man", as the soldier had said, had been tempting, but these people had some sort of weapon that he had never seen before. Through the tiny window in his cell, he had seen the tan soldiers mercilessly slaughter opponents wearing crimson with them.
For now, he would wait.
Rory McKinnon was living the high life. He sat in the cocktail lounge of the Lucky 38, nursing a glass of wine. Things were definitely looking up compared to his past self. Two years ago, he had been a lowly courier, delivering a package to New Vegas. Intercepted in Goodsprings and shot in the head…events had certainly taken a turn for the better. With Rory's help, Mr. House had secured Hoover Dam, the Strip was as vibrant as ever, and there was finally hope of advancement for the Mojave Wasteland.
Plus, he had picked up a new friend in Freeside, a sparky brunette named Korra. Said she was from Republic City; he had no clue where that was, but hey, the wastes were a big place. Maybe it was in the Commonwealth. Or in Texas, or somewhere. Honestly, he could care less where she came from. What mattered what that she had seemed a bit lost, though not in the least vulnerable. Korra sat next to him on a bar stool, opting for a Nuka-Cola instead of scotch or vodka.
"Okay, Rory," she said, spreading her palms questioningly, "one thing I don't understand are those Security-thingies."
Korra nodded. "Yeah. Those. What are they? I mean, I've never seen anything like them."
"Uhh, robots? They're kind of everywhere."
Korra gave him a deadpan stare that silently said that was hardly helpful.
"Okay," Rory said, taking another sip of the wine in his glass, "I take it you've never seen a robot before."
"Took you that long, huh, genius?"
Rory stroked his ginger beard for a second. "Okay, I'll try to explain. A robot is..uhh…okay. A robot is an artificial life form created when someone writes a program that can dictate how they'll respond to the world around them. They can be programmed for fighting, for domestic work, whatever. A robot is a very useful tool."
Over by the window, ED-E bleeped angrily in protest.
Rory put his hands up. "Except for you, buddy, except for you. Anyways, so that's what a robot is. The Securitrons are Mr. House's robots that act as security on the Strip and around the New Vegas area. That clear things up a bot? Err, a bit?"
Korra scratched the back of her head. "I guess. Okay, that answers the question of what the Securitrons are, but I still need to find my friends."
Rory nodded. "Right. What were their names again? Bolin, and, uh…"
"Bolin, Mako and Asami," Korra finished for him. "We got separated, and I have no idea where they are now. Can the Securitrons help at all?"
Rory was about to answer when the face of Mr. House popped up on the viewscreen that sat on the wall.
"I believe we can do that, Miss Korra. You see, you have displayed some very interesting abilities, according to my lieutenant here. Your comrades possess the same abilities, do they not?"
Korra blinked in confusion a few times before responding. "What, you mean, can they bend? Well, I mean, Bolin and Mako can, but Asami can't."
Mr. House's face remained static. "I see. Could you possibly show me what they look like? Do you have any photographs of them?"
Korra furrowed her eyebrows in thought. "Photographs? You mean, like, with a camera? Cause I don't have a camera, but I could draw them for you."
After being handed a pencil and a pad of paper, Korra quickly sketched three painfully bad portraits of Mako, Bolin and Asami.
"Well, that's…better than nothing, I suppose. Since the NCR and Legion have been routed from the Mojave, my Securitrons can search all the way from the Dam to the Mojave Outpost. If your friends are anywhere in the Mojave, rest assured that we can find them, and bring them back here." House's face winked out.
Rory turned to Korra and grinned. "Don't worry yourself," he said. "I get the feeling that your friends will turn up perfectly fine."
Bolin was backpedaling as fast as he could, but the monster chasing him was faster than anything he had ever seen before, and it could lunge an impossibly far distance. The beast was over ten feet tall, with a horns curving forward over its head. Its legs were thick with muscle, but those weren't what concerned Bolin. What concerned Bolin were the long lanky arms the thing had, and more specifically the terrifyingly large and sharp claws at the end of those arms.
The thing lunged again, and Bolin instinctively shot a chunk of stone at the monster. It hit it square in the chest, knocking it back temporarily. Bolin turned and sprinted as fast as he could away from the beast. Despite that, it was back on its feet in the blink of an eye, and rushing after its prey once again. Bolin tried to turn around and attack again, but a stray rock tripped him up, and he fell over backwards. Thing monster lunged again, and Bolin closed his eyes and flinched.
But he didn't hear the sound of claws slicing into flesh. What he heard was a resounding crack! that echoed through the canyon. He opened his eyes, and saw the animal lying in a heap directly in front of him, a grievous wound on the right side of its head. He turned to the source of the sound, and saw a man in a brown uniform, with two bandoliers slung across his chest, and a bright red beret sitting atop his head, which was closely shaven. In his hands, he held a long, black, metallic weapon of some sort.
The man looked at Bolin. "Hey," he said. "Looks like you had a bit of a close call there, pal. You okay?"
Bolin jumped up and ran over to the man, hugging him tightly. "Oh man!" he yelled."You saved my skin, lemme tell you! Okay, new best friend! Well, maybe second best friend, but definitely in my top two!"
The man squirmed uncomfortably. "Hey, look, pal, I'm glad you're okay, but keep shouting like that and you'll wake up every single deathclaw in the quarry!"
Bolin coughed and backed away sheepishly. "Well, uh, thanks again. Oh!" He held out his hand. "Name's Bolin- pro earthbender and almost deathclaw chow. That's what you said that thing was, right? A deathclaw?"
The man nodded, and shook Bolin's hand. "Yeah, that's them. Name's Boone, Craig Boone. Not quite sure what an earthbender is, but I'd guess it has something to do with that thing you were doing to the deathclaw. Never seen anything like that before."
Bolin cocked an eyebrow. "You mean you've never seen a bender before?"
Boone shook his head. "Is that what you are? Anyway, if I had, I'd have told you, don't you think? Also, what exactly are you doing in Quarry Junction at high noon? Not really the safest place in the Mojave to be."
Bolin folded his arms and frowned. "I wish I knew. Me, Korra and my bro Mako were sitting in City Hall. It was some sort of big meeting. Don't know why they needed us; I mean, Korra's the Avatar, so I guess having her there makes sense, but we had been asked to come too. Anyway, we were sitting in there, and bam! Felt something hit me in the head, blacked out, and next thing I know, I wake up with Ugly McSmellsalot sniffing me like I was a big bowl of catgator stew! Thanks again."
Boone nodded. "Okay, I got most of that. But you said someone was that avatar?"
"Yeah? What about it?"
"What's the avatar?"
Bolin stared at Boone. "You're joking, right?"
Boone shook his head stoically.
"You know, reincarnates whenever the previous one dies, been going on for thousands of year, can bend all…four…elements...Huh." Bolin scratched his chin. "I guess if you've never even seen a bender, not knowing who the avatar is isn't much of a stretch."
Boone looked over Bolin's shoulder. There were several deathclaws that had heard the gunshot, but hadn't seen the duo yet.
"Okay, Bolin, what say we scramble before any more deathclaws try to hug you? I'm on my way to New Vegas; you can come with me if you'd like. You'll have to explain the rest on the way."
Bolin turned and froze. "Uh, yeah, I have no idea where New Vegas is, but anywhere's better than here! Let's split!"
Boone and Bolin quickly made their way down the sandy slopes leading away from the Quarry to the road, and started off toward the Lucky 38 that was visible off in the distance.
Doc Mitchell leaned back in his chair and cleared his throat.
"Whelp," he said, "I think I've patched you up as best I could, so I can't see any reason to keep you any longer. I put all your things in that footlocker next to the door, so you can feel free to pick it up on your way out. Oh, and I also took the liberty of giving you a few stimpaks, so if you get injured, you should be okay."
"Thank you, Doctor. It means a lot. I'm sorry to have inconvenienced you."
He shook his head. "Not at all, Miss. I'm the doc, after all. It's what I do."
Asami stood up from the couch and handed Mitchell the clipboard that had her medical history on it.
Doc Mitchell chuckled. "You know, you're a lot like another fella I patched up not too long ago. He was roughed up a bit more than you, but he had a real fire inside him. Anyways, I'd figure you've got places to go, people to meet, that sort of thing." He started to put his tools in the bag next to his feet. "So what's next for you?"
Asami thought for a second. "Well, finding out just how I got here is important, but for the moment, I'd say I need to find my friends."
Mitchell nodded. "I can understand that. A fella needs his friends, after all. Good luck to ya, Miss."
Asami nodded. She walked to the front door, and took her things out of the footlocker. As she opened the door, a brief pain shot through her left arm where the wounds had been. As quickly as it came, it was over, and Asami brushed it off. She stepped through the door into the Mojave wastelands.
Step one: Find the team.
Step two: Find out how to get back to Republic City.
Asami sighed and frowned. She had no idea where to start looking for information on the others. Still, she had a job to do, and she would do it. When she looked out toward the horizon, the sun quickly setting, she saw a city of bright lights, and a tower that was taller and brighter than the rest. That was probably New Vegas, the city that Doc Mitchell had talked about. If there was information to be had, that was where she would get it. She grimaced, and strode forth into the wastes.
Well, there you have it. Part one of The Price of Failure! Criticism is welcome, and suggestions even more so. Also reviews. Reviews are good.