The Keystone Division after WW3


Some OOC info RE: Halfway Dam and RT 192

The road is about as beat as any other road in PA in 2003. The last maintenance was perhaps 2 years ago -- lots of potholes, etc. There are numerous washes and rockslides, especially as the road gets steeper, going up the mountain. Your pickup is a 4 x 4. Berger is driving without night vision goggles, but the headlights have been partially blacked out, and the moon helps with vision.

Sherman will do up a map for the Route Recce, noting bridges, culverts, towns and other important features.

Where needed Sherman will signpost (using a can of spray paint or house paint, marking an arrow on a tree etc) along the RT 192 to ensure the convoy can easily follow it.

The townships of Buffalo Crossroads, Cowan, Tannertown and Forest Hill will be observed to see if they are inhabited, where possible if an alternate route can be found we will avoid passing through places with people. Sherman will maintain coded radio contact with Wiz to keep them informed and pre-warned of any trouble spots.

These towns are all quite small -- really just a few houses and farms here and there along the road. Buffalo Crossroads can be skirted by going thru fields, roughly 400 meters north of the village. There are a few lights, probably fires, and some sounds -- dogs barking, a clunky generator running -- so Berger doesn't even ask, and leaves the road and bypasses the village. Farm Country. You inform Wiz of the activity there... He confirms. You mark the bypass with paint.

Cowan is dark and silent. It consists of about 12 burned out houses....

Tannertown is also dark and silent. About 6 burned out houses is all that's there...

Both little villagettes are farm country, with a few more clumps of forest.

At Forest Hill, the road noticeably starts to incline into a hill, and there is forest (ha!) on both sides of the road. Berger chuckles as you pass the intersection with RT 45. There is a mom & pop grocery store there, and a gas station. Before you ask, no, it's completely burned out and has been for about 2 years. Berger says there were quite a few hunting cabins / camps here pre-WWIII, but it seemed pretty quite 2 weeks ago when he last was here.

Berger again chuckles, then lets you in on why. He remarks that Forest Hill is one of those unique hick towns that can boast (nearly) a bar for every house in the village. You pass no fewer than 4 bars in about 250 yards, and count about 10-12 houses. He said it was a rough little burg in it's day -- as his hums the banjo theme from the movie Deliverance.

(sorry if the crude story offends -- but it happened and I always think of the poor little girl when I go thru the place.)

"They take are of justice their own way, here. Some hick raped another hick's 12 year old daughter -- violated her backside. The guy only served time till the court date, then got out cos the little girl was too scared to get it together on the stand. He went into the Forest Inn there and bragged about this to a barfull of other hicks. Well, the dope didn't know one of them was the girl's older brother. This brother rounded up brothers #2-4, stretched him over the pool table in the back room, and gave his backside a taste of a Budweiser beer bottle. That's how they were before things all went to Hell, and I'm sure things haven't improved since..."

Sherman listened solemly to Bergers story. To his mind he cannot condone the action of the brothers. The law should have been able to do more, vigilante justice was never the way.....

No lights on in Forest Hill, but smoke from somewhere to the north (righthand side of the road). "There is a creek just off the right side of the road. Pretty good trout fishing there", Berger remarks. "And we'll probably start seeing cabin lights here and there. They shouldn't bother us..."

Barring any unforseen events. If we arrive in Halfway Dam, Sherman and the advance party will best as they can patrol around the area to see what is there and make sure it is secure.

NOTE: Halfway Dam is part of the Raymond B Winter State Park.

Yes they are one in the same. Also called McCall Dam. The geographic features are easier to remember than the dudes these parks were named after. The common names are better known for that reason, and compounded by the large number of State Parks in the area.

05 MAY 2003 / 0230 hours
3/103rd Camp, Lewisburg, PA

The remaining military types had gotten their act together, and formulated a plan for their trek to the Recreation Area at Halfway Dam. Sherman and Berger would take a pickup truck, recently made workable by Petey Slade, and they and four militiamen would form the advance party, scouting the area ahead of the main caravan.

[Sherman] A suitable site will have to found for the main convoy. Somewhere near to water, defenseable, have some buildings in it already and room to construct more.

Sherman was intrigued by the smoke, which emanates from the north (righthand) side of the road, about 1km up the side of the mountain, but Berger chimes in as to Forest Hill's merits.

[ooc] He aced both his local area knowledge and persuasion rolls!

[Berger] "This place isn't readily defensible. Heck, people could swarm in from all sides. There's the stream for water, but I'm not sure there's enough for everyone in our group. That stream looks smaller and smaller when you think about watering horses and cattle, and keeping everyone clean and hydrated. Halfway Dam has at least 4-5 springs in addition to the underground ones that feed the lake. There's basically one way up and one way down -- easier to control with a blockhouse at either end of the RT 192 access. The Ranger Station was intact -- we even got a generator and few maps from there. There's also a Nature Center there. Could turn into housing for 20 or so people in a pinch. There's changing areas for the beach, which could be improved with a little work, and some stone and log cabins. There's housing for nearly everyone and everything we have. Somehow, most of it was intact 2 weeks ago when I was last there. And think of all the deer out there, just waiting to be roasted over a slow fire..."

Berger might not be Regular Army, but he could argue convincingly. Especially when he was right. A little more distance between the towns of Lewisburg and Mifflinburg could only help matters at this point. Not to mention the height advantage. Or the prospect of a little more meat in one's diet.

[Berger] "The Ranger Station is up ahead on the left, and here's the park. I'll show you the Nature Center first. It's the nicest building in the lot. From there, we'll hafta dismount to check out the rest of the place."

[GM] The two SGTs with their four man team continued up RT 192, until Berger turned right, into the park. Berger wheeled to the left, near a sign reading "Beach Access", just after crossing a little stream. Here he came to a stop in a large gravel parking lot, near a modernish-looking building with a strange, skewed-peak roof. Berger cut the lights and engine.

05 MAY 2003 / 0230 hours
Nature Center, Halfway Dam
West of Lewisburg PA on RT 192

"This is the Nature Center. Shall we have a look?"

Note that Boyer Gap Rd, McCall Dam Rd, and Sand Mtn. Rd are all unimproved (unpaved) roads, and given the lack of maintenance for 2-3 years since TSHTF, they can be considered usable to people, but impassable to vehicles or horses. Winter State Park Rd, (connecting Boyer Gap and Sand Mtn roads) is paved (at least pre WWIII), has been somewhat maintained, and is usable for both people and vehicles.

The dense canopy of hemlock, pine, and "1000 year old" oak trees effectively blotted out the moon. These trees stretched out above your head, leaving only a small rectangle of starry night visible above the gravel parking area. The smell of the forest was cool and enticing, scented with pine. Fallen leaves, wet beneath your feet, caused you to pause and be sure of your footsteps. From your position outside the Nature Center, you could hear water running nearby, probably within a few meters. The 4 man scout detail stretched their legs, and began milling about. No doubt they were sore from bumping along in the back of a pickup for the last 45 minutes or so. Berger contacted Wu on the radio, briefly letting the Camp know they were in place. Wu acknowledged, saying LT1 Jackson gives the A-OK to continue.

"Well SGT, what would you like to see first?...:"


05 MAY 2003 / 0120 hours
River Road, near Railroad Bridge
Lewisburg, PA

After about an hour of stress induced sleep Robbo had awoken and called in to the HQ, and managed to arrange a meet in town.

Robbo, now seated next to Valdez while Yates 'personed' the M60 shrugged his shoulders.

"I wonder why they didn't just let us into the compound? Something's rotten in Kislev, I'm sure of it. Ah well, you know where this petrol station is, don't you?"

Yates wrinkled her nose at the Aussie, but then smiled. "Yeah, the gas station -- it's 5 minutes away. Intersection of RT 15 and RT 192. You doin' OK? You still look abit peaky to me. We have time. Lemme get your vitals."

Robbo feels fine after his combat nap. About as fine as anyone would upon seeing most of his unit cut down in front of his eyes, or at least, gone missing.

Yates checked Robbo over, and did the same for PVT Yarmouth. Yarmouth had taken numerous fragments when a grenade had landed a few meters from the HUMVEE. Judging from the form lying very still beneath the tarp, PVT Sneed didn't fare as well.

Valdez looked as his watch, and waited for Yates to finish. "We'd better get going."

Valdez 'personed' the MG, and Yates hopped into the driver's seat. Yarmouth was awake, but reclined in the back of the vehicle. Robbo had "shotgun", beside Yates. Yates turned the engine over, and tore off thru the backstreets of the town. Sporadic shooting was heard to the south, roughly from the location of the 3/103rd Camp. Yates pressed onward, toward the Sunoco station.

05 MAY 2003 / 0130 hours
Buck's Sunoco Station
RT 15 / RT 192 Intersection
Lewisburg, PA

Cunningham cursed his bloody awful luck. It would be the undoing of him yet. He had been shanghaied into this unit just two days ago, and things had gone from bad to worse almost immediately. He had been placed under house arrest, forced to give up his weapons and Harley Davidson, and forced to pitch in with this US Army unit. Really it was a few officers and enlisted, and a whole lot of green civilians. How those citizens had been deluded into thinking they could fight toe to toe with the "Mutineers" across the river was anyone's guess. They hadn't much in the way of training, proper weapons, ammunition, and that was just a start. Sean's "journalist sense" had kicked into overdrive upon hearing the story, and something was indeed rotten in Kislev, as he had heard someone say a day or so ago...

Sean had parked his cycle inside the building next to the Sunoco, a CVS Pharmacy with the entire glass front window missing. He and Guiness, the only companion he truly trusted, had squeezed thru an opening in the fence between the CVS and the Sunoco, and had taken up position between two junked cars. The position offered a good view of the intersection, and easy access to RT 192 should anything bad go down. Which it only could, given Sean's near-magnetic attraction for ill happenings. Now, rather than run from Fate, Sean had met it head-on. He had volunteered to be in the rear security party, which would cover the main force as they headed for the hills. And then there was another small unit of the 3/103rd, apparently coming in from a mission. They had wounded, and were evading the same unit who had attacked the Camp. Sean felt no loyalty to the Army, per se, but to these people, trying to outrun a superior force, he did feel something. Maybe a sense of empathy, as he often found himself alone against overwhelming odds. So he had volunteered to stay behind...

After hunkering down for a half an hour by Seans wristwatch, he was ready for a stretch. And to check in with the others. A few other souls had likewise volunteered to stay behind, that others might escape. Some were utterly hopeless. One older man had most of one of his legs shot off, and various other wounds. He knew he wouldn't last long, and vowed to take as many of "the Basstuds" along with him as he could. Others in the small group had that crazed look in their eyes, or the "faraway stare". So Sean dislodged himself from his spot, stretched, and staying in the shadows, worked his way to where the doomed old man lay, propped up behind some tires near the gas pumps.

The old man smiled at Sean. It was friendly but pained smile. The old man reached into the pocket of his scroungy coat, and removed a flask. His voice was breathy, and nearly inaudible. "Would ya share a drink with me son?... I thought everyone had left, but I'm glad you're still here."

Left? What a friggin' load of bullshit!!! thought Sean. He asked the man exactly what did he mean, everyone had left? The man repeated what he said, saying he guessed they were just too scared, or they wanted to catch up with the main group. The old man again held up the flask, offering it to Sean. Well, at least Sean and Guiness weren't totally alone in this one. They had this old guy, leaking like a seive, to protect them. It was as reassuring as any other news Sean had heard lately. Sean made sure the old man's shotgun was loaded and cocked, and did the same for his own weapons.

Sean heard engine sounds approaching fast, and in mere seconds, a HUMVEE had skidded to a stop a few meters away. It was Valdez, on the M60. The other guy was an Aussie, can't remember his name. And who could forget that Nurse that looked like Sharon Stone. Hey, she could tend my...

Other vehicle sounds could be heard further south on RT 15.

The Hispanic man was in a hurry to get going. He scanned the road with his starlight scope. "Are you all that's here? C'mon. That looks like an M113 down the road. We've gotta book. CPL Robinson, get ahold of LT Jackson, and let him know we've linked up with rear security."

[CPL Robinson]
"He's on the line now. Says to get everyone loaded, then... this might sound crazy, but... to go in the gas station, find the cash register, and light a fuse you will find there, then throw the three switches. They look like common light switches, but they're mounted on a board, and have a bundle of cable leading out, which goes to a couple of other suprizes. So find that thing. He says you can't miss it. And don't waste time waiting around to see what happens. It's about a 3 minute delay, and it's linked to a bunch of goodies at the Sunoco station, and various points along RT 192 in Lewisburg -- Mostly stuff to knock down telephone poles and delay any pursuers, and cause quite a ruckus. He's very emphatic, though. Get everyone loaded, set the goodies off, and get the Hell away. SGTs Sherman and Berger are scouting a possible new location for the unit to dig in. We'll catch up to the main unit, and provide rear security "on the move" for them.

05 MAY 2003 / 0300 hours
Halfway Dam Recreation Area

About an hour later, the rear guard had climbed the mountain road to the new site, some in the HUMVEE, Sean in his cycle with sidecar. Here they met the main force-- people, vehicles, and animals -- which had arrived about 15 minutes earlier. All were dead tired, but everyone other person was "volunteered" to pull guard duty while the area was further secured, and the basics of life in their new home were put in place.

05 MAY 2003 / 0300 hours
Halfway Dam Recreation Area.

Out in the carpark directing traffic. Sherman ensured that all vehicles were parked in an orderly manner. The last vehicles to arrive were the rear security element. Sherman glanced at the weary faces in the Humvee and directs them to park it near the Nature Centre. All of them are regular army all that is except for Cunningham.... Sherman heard the unmistakeable throaty growl of Sean's Harley, sounded like it could do with a new muffler. Sherman gave the man a cold stare as he rode in, surprised that Cunningham even bothered to show up at all.

(Sean) As Sean rode by Sherman he replied to the military man's cold stare with a traditional biker salute, one finger held high, you guess which one. "Your rear has been guarded....sir!"

(Sherman) Its not worth it thinks Sherman showing no reaction to Seans taunt. "Thats Sergeant, Cunningham." he replies almost absently. With every vehicle now in the parking area Sherman heads over to the Humvee. "Okay people. No doubt the LT would like a word with you."

05 MAY 2003 / 0230 hours
Nature Center, Halfway Dam West of Lewisburg PA on RT 192

"Well SGT, what would you like to see first?...:"

Sherman looked up at what little night sky is visible. He rubbed the back of his neck and stretched his arms. Damn I feel tired, he thought.

"Lets check out the Guest House, Jack. The main convoy will be here soon."

Sherman called out the militia.

"I know you're tired but we still have work to do."

Sherman instructed the militia by name. They directed the convoy into the nature Center carpark using torches to guide the vehicles and showing them where to park. Everything will be done orderly.

Sherman and Berger entered the Nature Centre for a quick look around before the convoy arrived. For the moment, there was relief. Well, more accurately, alot of work, and a bit of relief. Or was there?....


05 MAY 2003 / 0700 hours
Former 3/103rd Camp
The fires in the former camp area had either been extinguished, or had burned out on their own. Bodies, friend and foe alike, had been piled at several points outside the camp. These were soon to be set ablaze. Several who had survived the attack were lined up, and after their belongings were removed, they were tied together and were marched eastward under guard.

An SUV careened into the area, and a tall silver headed man in a long leather duster got out, along with several others. This small group was noticably cleaner and better armed than the rest of their fellows, but their intent was the same, perhaps just a bit more harsh. The group, minus the leader, approached the line of prisoners, kicking them and whacking them with rifle butts. Their search of the line complete, they returned to the leader and made their report.

[Sgt Malone]
"Don't see any of them sir, they all look to be militia or civilians. They'll break easily tho, I'm sure of it."

"Well, get what I asked for, but don't kill them before I get it. Understood?"

The leader approached the piles of bodies, kicking them aside, studying faces, as if he was looking for someone. One body groaned slightly -- it still lived. The leader, a bird Colonel by the silver eagle on his collar, trod on the man's hand, grinding his boot into the hapless soul's fingers.

"Where were they headed? Speak, man, or it can get alot worse."
In a flash the injured man's free hand was out, and the knife it concealed slashed at the Colonel's leg. The Colonel's long coat became entwined with the blade, and turned a crippling wound into a mere annoyance. The Colonel spun away from his attacker, delivering a crescant kick to the hand wielding the blade, which suddenly flew into the sand several meters away.

[Man wielding knife]
"Stryfe, you bastard! You traitor! You sold us out. I'm done for, but they'll get you! STRYFE!!!"

[Colonel Stryfe]
"You are correct in two respects, you scum. I sold you all out. The compensation was simply too fabulous to pass up. As for anyone getting me, I believe that is highly unlikely anytime in the near future. But as to your other point, yes, my man, you are DONE!"

With that the Colonel drew his Ruger .44 Magnum, and put a slug squarely in the middle of the man's chest. This nearly coincided with two other men raising a flag over the camp, a strange alteration of the red Keystone emblem of the 28th Division -- this version had a black, demonic-looking skull and crossbones etched into the middle of the keystone. COL Nathan Stryfe picked up the knife, tucked it away somewhere on his person, and continued.

"Now clean this mess up, and be quick about it. That area was the Intelligence Center. Bring any and all papers you find their. Also should be a laptop. Set up the MG's here, and there, and clean out the mortar pit -- there's probably some 81mm there in the ammo pit. You, over there, check that bunkered area -- that was the armory. Anything of use, we take. The rest, clear away. And if you find any others from this ragtag bunch of fools...

...bring them to me."

[OOC] The unit organization is written elsewhere but repeated here FYI:

The 28th Division is composed of several Brigades:
2nd -- mech inf. located in Western and North Western PA. Fairly strong. Robbo's parent unit.

55th -- comprised of the 1/109 mech inf, 2/103 mech inf, and 3/103 armored (that's you)

56th -- surely decimated when the Greater Philadelphia area was nuked. Sherman's parent unit.

Aviation -- helicopter infantry. Ft. Indiantown Gap, Harrisburg. Maj Tyler's unit.

DISCOM -- Divisonal Support Command. Ft. Indiantown Gap. LT1 Jackson's parent unit.

Then, among the 3/103, formerly commanded by COL Stryfe, there were 3 Companies, plus a support platoon. "A" Company deserted, (bloodless mutiny) and headed north for Williamsport / Mansfield, according to best intel. "B" Company (that's you) stayed in Lewisburg, but now has relocated to Halfway Dam. "C" Company were the active mutineers, and are based in Sunbury, Northumberland, and now on this side of the river, in Lewisburg.

There was a mutiney last Christmas, where part of Aviation Brigade (foot infantry at the time) stormed Wash, DC. This mutiney of Colonel Stryfe's is then actually the third in the 28th Division's history.

So how does it feel to be hunted by a Green Beret?.......


05 MAY 2003 / 0300 hours
Halfway Dam Recreation Area

Robbo climbed out of the hummer and looked around into the darkness. Slowly, like a man in his old age, he slowly turned back to the Hummer, and dragged out his pack and rifle. He managed a sly grin at Yates up behind the M60 before nodding at Valdez.

"I owe you two, you risked your butts to drag my sorry wet behind out of that town. If I can do anything for you, just ask. But not until I've got some sleep."

[Valdez](in his comical exaggerated Hispanic voice a la Cheech and Chong
"Don't mention it *mate*!"

"Get some rest. Any bumps or boo boos show up in the morning, I'll patch ya up."

With that Robbo turned towards one of the pavillions, and staked out his sleeping spot. Almost too tired and cold to bother, he unrolled his whimp mat and sleeping bag, before sliding into the cold cocoon, hoping to warm by morning.

05 MAY 2003 / 1030 HOURS
Halfway Dam Recreation Area

Mercifully, the Gods-of-No-Sleep are held at bay by older, stranger Gods, the One-Eyed Gods of the Old Testament, who themselves never sleep, only watch...


[OOC] That was my Richard "Rogue Warrior" Marchinko imitation. How'd I do?

Berger made the rounds later that morning after the 3/103rd relocated to Halfway Dam, waking key people in the nearly decimated unit. He, and roughly half the garrison, had gotten no sleep, zero, zilch, nada, and Berger was ready to remedy that situation. Dawn had arrived a few hours ago, and there had been no attack. There had been a few key developements, and he would appraise the key people as to what the were, shortly. So those that HAD the opportunity to sleep would be awakened. On principle, He stopped at the officers area first. He figured correctly that officers deserve less sleep. And his work there was quick and simple -- LT1 Jackson was the only officer who survived the attack, and made the journey to the relative safety of the mountain. Berger was unsure about LT Jackson, or more exactly, was unsure about his capacity to lead. But the Army had collected alot of unlikely personell within the last year or so. Berger included himself, a High School Chem teacher, and his best friend Mike Wu, a computer programmer for Lockheed Martin, in that group. Situations forced people to adapt, or perish. So the LT would be someone to watch in the future. Him watching the Camp for an afternoon and evening while the other officers played cards was not much experience, and now LT Jackson had the reins for real. In his defense, he was way smarter than most of the Regular Army types, and possessed a creative mind that was unhindered by traditional problem solving. Or so the teacher in Berger thought...

Next, he woke SSG Sherman, apparently second in command of the unit. Sherman was a likable fellow, competant, honest, and always ready to help. Berger decided he liked the man.

There was the joker Robbo Robinson from Australia, an interesting man to say the least. He had alot of practical experience, was a competant gunsmith and communication specialist. In all, an intelligent and important man to the unit, in terms of skills. Berger instantly liked the man, and decided he'd have to spend more time with him, learning whatever he could from Robbo.

Then there was the biker dude Sean Cunningham. Berger remembered some of his CNN broadcasts from the Second Battle of Gettysburg, as well as the man's work with the Federcion del Sud campesenos down in Mexico. The Irishman seemed to sympathize with the underdogs, no matter what nationality or faction they supported. Plus he was a drunk, a doper, a crazy or all three. That would be enough to send up red flags in anyone's eyes, except for the fact that Sean had pretty much singlehandedly knocked out two enemy MGs, and stifled the assault on the southeast wall last night. The jury was still out on this one. Berger seemed to pity the man's dog more than he actually liked the man.

All of these personal thoughts aside, Berger had two items of information for the group, before he could turn in and get some sleep for himself. He woke each of the key people, and gave them the following brief info:

"Goodmorning. Glad to see you're alive and rested. We've not been hit since we got here, but I have two important things to say. I'll make it quick cos I'm tired. First, our pickets captured two prisoners. They didn't appear to be part of a larger group, but interrogating them is someone else's job. They're secure, and have been kept "sterile" like MAJ von Fischer instructed us to do."

Berger paused for a moment, sleep heavy in his eyes.

"Next, we've had some volunteers offer join us, some on the march early this morning, and others that appear to live in the area. Again, I'm kicking all of this upstairs for decision and directions. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to sleep. I'll be back on duty at 1600 hours. Thanks..."

With that Berger left.



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