Title--Sentenced in the Wasteland
Fandom--Fallout, specifically Fallout 3.
Characters--Way too many to list. The Lone Wanderer is in a lot of them.
Rating/Warnings--PG-13. Drugs, sex, swearing, slash, and, of course, death.
Pairing(s)--A few are mentioned.
Summary--The many stories the Wasteland holds don't always need to be told in epics. Sometimes, just a sentence can capture the hell that hundreds call their home and thousands call their grave. //1sentence fic.//
#01 – Comfort
In the Wasteland, comfort is brought about by chemical means far more often than by other people.
#02 – Kiss
The Lone Wanderer's first kiss is taken by none other than Death himself.
#03 – Soft
The bed in Tenpenny Tower is soft, the softest she's come across since she left Vault 101, but the Lone Wanderer still finds herself unable to sleep that first night; the thought of what she did to earn that bed is haunting and all she sees when she closes her eyes is Megaton going up in a radioactive cloud.
#04 – Pain
"Just take this, it'll make the pain go away and get you to shut up," Leo Stahl's father growls at him, pushing a pill into his son's hands before shoving the boy away.
#05 – Potatoes
Doctor Li frowns at the brown, rotten potatoes briefly before asking Carlos to throw them out, frustrated that yet another one of her food experiments failed to produce anything edible.
#06 – Rain
It doesn't rain in the Wasteland often, but when it does people take cover as quickly as possible; those that are foolish enough to stay out or misfortunate enough to not have anything to hide under soon learn the scorching pain of irradiated water falling from the sky.
#07 – Chocolate
Though it's not a large loss in their diets, the day that Vault 101 runs out of chocolate pudding is the day many of its residents realize just how bad their situation can turn if the food runs out before they can leave.
#08 – Happiness
As the Lone Wanderer wanders through the wreckage that is Vault 101, he stumbles across his old room; he only sees a photograph of a much younger version of himself and his dead father before he bolts back out, tears prickling painfully in his eyes at the memory of happiness that was shattered on that fateful day so long ago.
#09 – Telephone
"Moira, that isn't a 'Brain Draining Apparatus', it's what people used to use to talk to each other over long distances," the Lone Wanderer calmly explains to an increasingly upset shop owner, "and it won't work without any phone lines."
#10 – Ears
Though the Brotherhood of Steel's Knights are endlessly loyal to their Elder, many complaints privately arise among them, particularly about how the helmet they have to wear most of the day crushes their ears and makes them ache all night.
#11 – Name
The Lone Wanderer found that, three years after she left the Vault, she no longer went by Jessica; she had stopped introducing herself by that name a month into her Wasteland stay, when Three Dog started to sing his praises for her over the airwaves and people stopped bothering to ask what she went by other than her radio nicknames.
#12 – Sensual
Sarah Lyons frowned down at the Squire, offering no help to the crying boy other than the advice her father had given her long ago in regards to tough training sessions: "cut yourself off from your senses, from the pain, and focus only on moving forward, even if it's just a step."
#13 – Death
The Wasteland holds the stories of a million horrible, indescribable deaths; few think of this fact when they cross its barren, hilly landscape, only seeing the corpses that remain after the tales end.
#14 – Sex
Nova's first time, from what she can remember of it, wasn't particularly special aside from the fact that it marked the start of the descent of her life from bearably unpleasant to downright terrible.
#15 – Touch
Lucas Simms was walking out the door to start his daily rounds when his five-year-old son's hands gripped at his duster, causing the sheriff to pause for a moment and look down at the heartbroken face of his child before working his sleeve free of his grip, softly apologizing, and leaving.
#16 – Weakness
Moira Brown has seen what drug addictions do to people—just look at that poor Vault boy, she often thinks to herself when the Jet-addicted man wanders into her shop dazedly—but finds that the knowledge disappears from her mind when it comes to the boxes of Mentats that find their way into Megaton and, ultimately, into her.
#17 – Tears
James's clearest memory of his late wife is of her lifeless face, freshly-cried tears shining from the harsh light of the room's fluorescent lighting.
#18 – Speed
"Just 70 caps a canister, you know," Murphy offers to an annoyed Barrett, who replies kindly with a "shut the fuck up, you moron, I'm not an addict".
#19 – Wind
Dogmeat holds his nose to the wind for a moment before growling and shifting into a fighting stance; the smell of blood in the air and the loud, raucous laughter that follows are signals enough that whatever's coming is not to be trusted.
#20 – Freedom
When James clambers out of the entrance cave to Vault 101, with the sun blinding him and the slightly irradiated air burning his lungs, he can't help but think of freedom before thinking of the daughter he left behind.
#21 – Life
"I'm sorry, ma'am, but your son was posing a threat to the Purifier workers," the Brotherhood of Steel Knight explains to the sobbing mother, her dead son laying behind them and speckles of his blood on the Knight's armor and gun.
#22 – Jealousy
The almost predatory look the Vault kid shoots Flak when he first walks into Rivet City's Marketplace is almost enough to make Shrapnel pull out one of the store's assault rifles and use it on the bastard because damn it, Wastelanders can't just hobble in here and look at people's boyfriends like that.
#23 – Hands
When she explains to a naively curious Wanderer why she hasn't "worked" with Gob, Nova leaves out the fact that it's his hands—his gnarled, decaying hands—that are the biggest turn-off the prostitute has in regards to the bartender.
#24 – Taste
The Lone Wanderer finds that, upon returning to Vault 101 and managing to pay her way back in as a resident, the automated food that Andy dispenses always tastes off; it's only a few weeks after she re-begins her Vault life that she realizes it's because the food doesn't have any sort of radiation, so unlike what she subsisted on in the Wasteland.
#25 – Devotion
Charon studies the Ninth Circle's new patron, trying to determine whether the man is asking about his relationship to Ahzrukhal to be a jackass, determines that he isn't, and replies with a simple, honest answer: "Devotion is a very misused thing."
#26 – Forever
"Forever," Colin responds, answering Gob's question of how long he was to be in debt to him as if someone had asked him about the non-existent weather.
#27 – Blood
The Brotherhood Outcasts wear their armor with black and red painted on the steel; black for the oblivion they see the Brotherhood of Steel as having slipped into and red for the blood spilled while Elder Lyons pursued the light he saw in it.
#28 – Sickness
"If I listen closely, I can hear my genes dying," the Lone Wanderer complains to Moira, who smiles delightedly (and, he thinks to himself, insanely) as she writes down his statement along with "subject is slightly GLOWING!".
#29 – Melody
The sad tone of The Ink Spots floats throughout the ruins of an office building, weaving an endlessly ironic melody among the cracked walls and caved-in floors.
#30 – Star
Sarah Lyons, though considered to be the Brotherhood of Steel's shining star by all of its East Coast members, is still resented by some of the lower Knights, though rarely aloud and never to her face.
#31 – Home
Amata can only pray to a God she barely knows that the friend she helped escape so long ago will come back and save Vault 101 from itself.
#32 – Confusion
Elder Lyons internally sighs as Sarah glares at him defiantly, wondering why he brought up that damned "Confusing the Sexes: 10 Sure-Fire Ways to Cure Any Homosexual Feelings in Your Child" book in the first place with someone as hard-headed and sure of herself as his daughter.
#33 – Fear
It is a fear that few humans ever have the misfortune to experience that the Vault 106 residents have pumping through their veins as they stand in the room between the Vault and the Vault door, hoping in vain that it opens before the pounding fists from behind the barricaded hydraulic door burst through and kill them all.
#34 – Lightning/Thunder
The Ghouls that are old enough to remember the Great War often remember only the intense brightness of the nuclear bombs dropping on Washington D.C. and the roaring sound of planes, explosions and death.
#35 – Bonds
"I'd like to buy all the kids," the Lone Wanderer calmly tells the Slaver guard, pulling out a bag of caps and handing it to the man while the enslaved children look on in distrust.
#36 – Market
Paulie has tried so many times to break into the Marketplace at night and get at his store's stash of chems that the security officers have started drawing broken pencils each night to see who will go and deal with the strung-out junkie.
#37 – Technology
After the schism, Elder Lyons insisted more than ever before that each Knight keep their armor free of any stains, particularly any red or black ones; any Knight found with "dirty" armor would have the privilege of wearing it taken away for one week and be forced to live as an Initiate, leading many of those Knights with poor grooming habits to curse the Outcasts while meticulously scrubbing their equipment night after night.
#38 – Gift
"What you call a bomb, lost child, is what we of the Church of Atom call His greatest gift," Confessor Cromwell tells the visitor to Megaton, frowning as she fixes him with a suspicious stare and backs up a step.
#39 – Smile
Even when Moira Brown's trademark smile and eccentric personality are dampened after a visit from the newest Vault escapee, few take notice and no one asks her about the sudden change; unsurprising, considering that in the Wasteland survival is first, wealth is second, stability is third and happiness is fourth in order of importance, and as far as most of her customers are concerned the shop owner has plenty of the first three.
#40 – Innocence
The few Mungos that have been allowed into Little Lamplight often note the contradicting nature of MacCready's gruff, crude attitude towards them and the relative innocence of the rest of the children inside.
#41 – Completion
It's an odd situation for the Lone Wanderer, sitting outside her home in Megaton, reliving her glory days to anyone new enough to listen and dealing with the all-too-new feeling of completion and boredom that has filled her post-retirement life.
#42 – Clouds
Burke is all but jumping up and down with excitement over the far-off mushroom cloud that is rising where Megaton used to be, the tinkling of caps and promise of glory replacing the image of destruction in his eyes.
#43 – Sky
Brian Wilks often sneaks away from C.J. and James during the day to go and sit alone on the flight deck, watching the endless blue sky and wondering, like many other Rivet City residents do, what tomorrow will bring.
#44 – Heaven
Every so often one of Three Dog's sources tells him of their encounter with the Lone Wanderer and swears up and down that they saw an angelic white glow and halo around the man as he walked off after helping them.
#45 – Hell
Every so often one of Three Dog's sources tells him of their encounter with the Lone Wanderer and swears up and down that they saw a violent red glow around and horns on the woman as she walked off after terrorizing them.
#46 – Sun
Nova sighs as a drunken Jericho slurs something about being hotter than the sun next to her; it seems that terrible pick-up lines have managed to claw their way through the nuclear war that wiped out just about everything else.
#47 – Moon
Most of the Wasteland residents residing in small cities or settlements only know the moon from stories passed down through the years or by reading charred books that describe its beauty; they know that to go out and gaze upon it themselves is often asking for trouble or worse by any wandering criminal.
#48 – Waves
The waves of the Lone Wanderer's actions ripple throughout the Wasteland, upsetting some and thrilling others.
#49 – Hair
"We ought to wear those goddamn wigs, just to fuck with Griffon," the Ghoul guard mutters to his nervous companion as they look into the freshly broken into cabinet at the sets of clothes and the multiple wigs.
#50 – Supernova
"I was out of town when the bomb detonated," Moira lies to the Lone Wanderer, trying not to think too much of what the man did, of the supernova she had experienced—and somehow survived, while her friends died around her—because this man wanted to make his situation better.
A/N: The bolded, numbered lines are the prompts from the Alpha theme set from 1sentence. Number 16 is a piece of headcanon taken from Keith B. Real's The Adventures of Moira Brown, which is a rather interesting fic in its own right.