• Published 6th Apr 2016
  • 1,499 Views, 42 Comments

Fallout Equestria: Black Cat - Rixizu



Break Point is a simple pony that just wants a simple and easy life. That is shattered when she accidentally causes the death of the son of a powerful crime lord. Now she must fight for survival.

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Chapter 45

“You won’t get away with this!” A raider screamed, pointing a hobbled together rifle right towards Break. The bullets bounced away as her stand punched them away. Yet, the raider refused to surrender after she defeated his fellows. Three others stood unconscious nearby, ready for the authorities. Break didn’t have the heart to kill them despite everything they’d done. It seemed cruel to kill them when they were so outmatched. A single blow to the head rendered the raider unconscious. She used Good Times, Bad Times to load the raiders unto a cart she’d found.

“Forty caps, not a bad haul.” Break recounted them, making sure she hadn’t made a mistake.

It had been lucky finding these ponies while flying across the plains. They’d fired on her on sight, but the distance made it a difficult shot. She needed to show more care while flying. If that raider hadn’t been firing with such a shoddy weapon, it would have gone bad quickly. After salvaging anything useful in the old barn the raiders had used as a base, she loaded them onto the cart and pulled it with her stand towards the outpost she’d discovered earlier. It was a dice toss if Rocky Road would even accept her salvage, but somepony there might want it.

“Hold it right there.” A metallic voice said, and Break froze. She turned to find a Steel Ranger aiming a nasty-looking railgun towards her head. Where had he come from? The rock they’d hidden behind wasn’t big enough to hide that metal armor. Had they used a StealthBuck to render themselves invisible? They didn’t hide a pony completely, but if a pony stood completely still, they were almost undetectable.

“May I help you?” Break asked, more annoyed than scared. It surprised her how little weapons being aimed at her bothered her anymore. It wasn’t something Break wanted to get used to.

“What are you hauling?” The Ranger asked, peering into her cart. His head rose in question when he spotted the raiders. “Are you a bounty hunter? Why are you taking these raiders’ bodies?”

Break snorted. “They aren’t dead. I’m bringing them in to face justice.”

“Justice?” The Ranger snorted with derision. “Do you enjoy wasting your time? The villagers will only hang them later.”

Break fought back her annoyance. “I don’t have any useful salvage if you’re wondering.” She showed the Ranger a random piece of junk from her cart.

Instead of studying the salvage, the Ranger turned their attention to Break. “Aren’t you the infamous Black Cat?”

“Might be.” She made the words a veiled warning.

“The Senior Paladin wishes a word with you.” The Ranger kept their weapon aimed and primed wary of any sudden action. Did they think Break would randomly attack them? Annoyed, Break followed the Ranger and discovered a bunker hidden amongst the rocks. As they approached, two more Ranger moved to greet them.

“Inside.” Her captor showed Break into a small cave containing high tech surveillance equipment. A pony stood at a table overlooking a map. They wore full-body power armor, but this one was painted black and its lens glowed an eerie red.

Oh boy, one of these ponies.

“Black Cat, the demon of the wasteland, correct?” The Senior Paladin said. It sounded female, but with the voice modulation, it was hard to tell. It made their voice sound deep and imposing and was trying too hard in Break’s opinion.

“I don’t know about that. I’m just a simple wastelander trying to make a living.” Break replied, holding back her annoyance. Ponies had such funny ideas about her.

“Really?” The Senior Paladin replied. “I hear you captured an entire band of raiders, by yourself and unarmed.”

How did they know that? Oh, right. They must have a radio built into their suit. Break shrugged. “They got careless and I attacked them from behind.”

The Senior Paladin turned towards their subordinates. “Have you dealt with the raiders, Hazel?”

“Already taken care of, sir.”

Break flinched when the sound of gunshots rang through the quarry answering their questions. A surge of anger flooded through Break. Sure, they were raiders and bad guys, but nopony deserved such pointless and cruel execution. It took several moments and deep breaths for Break to regain her calm.

“Interesting, you care for their raiders’ lives?” The Senior Paladin asked.

Break narrowed her eyes. “Nopony deserves being shot down like a dog while unconscious.”

The Senior Paladin snorted, turning away dismissing her opinion. “What shall I do with you, Black Cat?”

“Look, I have no quarrel with the Steel Rangers.” Break kept her voice even and reasonable. “Release me, and we’ll never meet again.”

“You know what I don’t like about you?” The Senior Paladin asked. “You’re a random factor. You go somewhere, and disaster strikes again and again. I must eliminate this factor to maintain order.”

Without warning, Hazel aimed their minigun and opened fire. Break cried out in alarm and punched the bullets out of the air, redirecting them into a wall. Break readied herself to move towards the door to escape, but the fire abruptly stopped and the Senior Paladin chuckled.

“So, you are a demon as the rumors say protected by some bizarre magic.” The Senior Paladin said.

“I don’t have a quarrel with you.” Break stressed every word, trying to deescalate the situation. She’d been lucky it was only a mini-gun. The Rangers had nastier weapons like missile launchers and grenade-chainguns impossible for Good Times Bad Times to defend against. Several Rangers moved, blocking the door, weapons primed. They weren’t making escape easy.

“Earth ponies don’t have magic.” The Senior Paladin said. “Tell me, is it technology granting you this bullet blocking barrier? Is it some application on your PipBuck? Something else?”

“It’s just something I have.” Break replied, cursing she’d let herself get drawn into this bunker like a total idiot. “Someponies are just born with strange powers.” Steel Rangers learning the secret of stands would be disastrous, deciding to keep her answers vague and unhelpful.

The Senior Paladin stayed silent for several long moments. “Interesting, my instincts tell me there’s something unique about you.”

“The subject is resisting, should we begin the operation, Senior Paladin Edgeguard?” Hazel asked.

“Commence the operation,” Edgeguard said like they were ordering tea and biscuits. “We don’t need her alive.”

Break readied herself for bullets to fly, instead the room filled with gas from a thrown grenade burning her lungs which made breathing difficult. Her lungs burned as she broke into a violent coughing fit. Moments later, she realized how dangerous it made her predicament. Her power couldn’t block bullets if she couldn’t see. The sound of a chaingun winding up hit her ears and she dropped to the floor. It wasn’t a moment too soon as bullets flew past her back. Stars circled her head as a metal hoof collided with her skull. Her head smashed into the icy stone floor and a heavy hoof held her in place. Through the dense smoke, she saw a gun barrel aimed towards her head.

“You have one warning, surrender, or you die.” The pony said. “As the senior paladin says, we don’t need you alive.” Break winced as the metal boot pressed down harder.

Like heck, I’m letting that happen. While the pony had her pinned against the floor, they made a mistake revealing their weapon. Break’s stand punched the barrel hard, bending it at an odd angle.

“What?” The pony stared astounded. They screamed in pain when her power punched them clear across the room.

Break used her gravity powers to fly towards the ceiling. Bullets flew towards her but dodged them thanks to her quick thinking.

“She’s on the ceiling?” A pony said, confirming Break’s suspicions that the Rangers had a device that pierced the thick smoke cover. Before they got a lock on her, she changed gravity’s direction towards the back wall and flipped over the table using it as a makeshift barrier. It wouldn’t provide much protection, but it might buy her time.

“Use more smoke bombs, don’t let her stall them out,” Edgeguard said.

Break fell to the ground, narrowly avoiding the hail of bullets that pierced the table with ease. They swung towards her direction, but her stand punched them away despite Break only guessing where they were. Still, she suspected her luck wouldn’t last. It only took a single lucky hit to finish her and the gas continued to cause fits of violent coughing.

Soldiers cried out in pain and surprise as Break flew forward and kicked the bullet filled table into the Rangers clamoring towards her. She flew toward the ceiling again before they got a bead on her. She fell back down and collected a Ranger crawling from beneath the table. They screamed in pain as bullets clanged against their armor. It hurt them, but the constant flow of painkillers and healing potion healed anything that pierced their armor. Strangely, Break didn’t feel guilty using this Ranger as a pony shield. They were such self-righteous jerks, making it difficult to feel any sympathy towards them. Besides, they still lived, which mattered. Break threw her captive towards the door’s general direction and felt satisfaction as they collided with several other Rangers.

Break flew around dodging and deflecting gunfire and winced as a stray bullet caught the edge of her back leg. As Rangers clamored in her direction, she flew in that direction, punching aside anything she came in contact with. Good Times Bad Times, while powerful, only put serious dents in their power armor. She decided punching a Ranger into submission would waste precious time. Instead, she threw them hard into the wall, momentarily stunning them. More bullets flew and Break used another Ranger as a shield blocking the incoming fire. While powerful, they couldn’t move very fast and their weapons ate tons of ammo. As the firing diminished, she crawled towards the most likely location of the entrance. Several Rangers blocked her path, but she flew under their legs, twisting and turning like a slithering snake. A thick metal door blocked her final escape, which proved harder to punch down than predicted.

“Grenade!” Break heard the clank of a grenade sliding towards her and the nearby Rangers jumped to safety leaving Break dead center in the explosion’s radius. After realizing she’d never find it in the smoke, she threw herself away towards the center of the room and howled in pain as intense heat bombarded her body and something cracked as her body crashed into the wall. Her left shoulder erupted in blinding pain and her ears rang, leaving her blind and deaf. Helpless. Worse, the explosion hadn’t even blown down the door. She laid on the ground playing dead, hoping to buy the necessary time needed to recover. Her hearing recovered but left the world around her indistinct and muffed.

“Is she dead?” A Ranger clanked up towards her. “She isn’t moving.”

“Check if there’s a heartbeat,” Edgeguard replied, “I’m still detecting a heat signature.”

The Ranger pressed some device against her chest and she realized it must be a stethoscope. It would detect her racing heart in moments. Desperate, she grabbed her heart with her stand and squeezed, hoping to slow down her heart rate. Unbelievable pain burned in her chest as she forced her heart to stop beating.

“She’s still alive!” The Ranger concluded. “Her heartbeat is weak but detectable.” Obviously, the monitor was too powerful to fool, but ignored the pain and kept squeezing until they pulled away the monitor from her, keeping up the deception for a moment longer. The weak heartbeat might fool her enemies into thinking Break was dying or unconscious.

“Give her a bullet in the head.” Edgeguard gave an unpleasant laugh. “The scribes can dissect her.”

“That seems needlessly cruel.” The raider who examined her said surprising everypony in the room.

“That’s an order.” Edgeguard snapped. “You forget we’re dealing with savages and this one is a mutant freak.”

Before anypony could react, Break threw her limp body across the room. She painfully rolled over everything on the floor, but she didn’t care. They fired on her, but her sudden movement delayed them enough that they hadn’t the correct timing to hit her. She smiled as she hit the door and noticed the grenade had damaged the door enough that punching it off its hinges was easy. Daylight, clean air, and freedom awaited her and she flew in a random direction to safety. Screams and curses followed her, but the increasing distance making hitting her impossible.

----


Hazel grimaced as the Black Cat fled towards safety. Somehow, despite the overwhelming odds, she escaped. He hadn’t believed the rumors of her luck and prowess, but she survived an encounter with the deadliest ponies in the world. Senior Paladin Edgeguard wouldn’t be pleased. From her silence, Hazel knew this to be true. Several moments passed as they awkwardly waited for the tirade to come. Instead, Edgeguard laughed amused by something they didn’t understand.

“Whatever mutation caused those powers, they were formidable,” Edgeguard said, “gravity itself was her servant. Yes, we must study her.”

“How?” A brave Ranger asked. “Her speed was incredible and she can fly higher than we can ever reach her!”

Edgeguard turned her gaze towards the pony that spoke. They couldn’t see her face but knew the scathing look the speaker was receiving. “She’s also an untrained civilian with no real understanding of tactics or planning. She survived only by luck alone.”

“Besides, she can’t hide from us forever.” Edgeguard addressed the group and the senior paladin stood on the stairs leading outside, looking down on her subordinates. “We can search for her later. Instead, we will focus on learning if more ponies have a similar mutation. Do they have similar powers or different ones? We might have lost the Black Cat, but my instincts tell me there are more of her kind out there. Get moving. I want a full report by the end of the week.”

Everypony saluted and Hazel left to interrogate the bandit prisoners. They’d tricked the Black into thinking they’d coldly executed them, but that had been only a ruse to unnerve her. No, the Steel Rangers still had use for them. Rumors said Lion Heart, the former leader of the 1000 strong bandit army, had strange powers. They would determine the validity of those rumors. The bound and gagged raiders squirmed in fear as Hazel approached and a nearby Ranger freed their mouths.

“Please, let us go!” A raider said. “We promise to never bother anypony again!”

“Yeah!” Another raider waved his head in agreement so hard his head might break off. The other two made a similar gesture, terrified for their lives.

“Were you part of the Raider army led by Lion Heart?” Hazel asked. They’d been lucky Black Cat had routed the army, for he wasn’t sure even the Steel Rangers could defeat them.

“Yes!” The terrified first raider said. “We weren’t that important though, just grunts. Lion Heart spoke and we went.”

“Tell me, did your leader have any strange powers?” Hazel watched his prisoner closely. From their expressions, he’d hit something.

“Well, maybe?” The raider replied. “I saw nothing myself, but I’ve heard rumors.”

“You saw nothing?” Another said incredulously. “He picked up ponies with crazy mind powers and crushed them to death!”

Hazel turned toward that pony. “Explain.”

“Beats me.” Sweat gathered on the second raider’s forehead. “There was no magic light or nothing. They lifted into the air on their own. Sometimes, the pony would stop breathing, like something prevented them from breathing or something!”

A Ranger wrote this information down and gathered everything they could on the bandit leader. Somehow, these psychic powers could crush steel with ease. With a look, Lion Heart froze ponies in place, leaving them helpless. These powers made him gain followers quickly who feared his wrath. They were an unorganized bunch with no other hierarchy except Lion Heart, but still dangerous.

“We’ve told you everything we know.” The first raider said. Please let us go.” The other raiders gave their captives pleading looks.

“Kill them.”

The raiders screamed as Rangers gunned them down, and Hazel felt no remorse. They were Steel Rangers and this was the Wasteland. Mercy was a foals’ concept. The war was still unfinished. Unlike Blues who’d shown foalish sympathy, leading to Black Cat’s escape, Hazel wouldn’t hesitate.

“Give this info to the commander,” Hazel said, “there’s a raider nest nearby. I’ll check to see if their story collaborates.”

---

Aurora adjusted her cloak for the hundredth time, scratching at a spot that particularly annoyed her. It was a wonder the surfacers hadn’t killed themselves being forced to wear such garments regularly. Still, the ponies that passed her didn’t even glance her way as she passed, so she supposed the disguise had worked. Primrose was a busy little town and ponies bustled with their daily business. Cosas thugs patrolled the streets, but their presence wasn’t as bad as she’d expected. It wasn’t hard to learn why. Keeping the peace and protecting their assets had spread the criminal group thin. They’d had a recent surge of fresh recruits, but not nearly enough for the current workload.

It didn’t take long to find the meeting point, a small bowling alley converted into a restaurant. Aurora always found it amazing how the surfacers made use of anything and everything for their purposes. They had removed the bowling lanes to seat more ponies and the place was busy with customers.

“Take a seat.” The proprietor, Supreme Shimmer, gestured to an empty booth which she took. “I’ll be right there.”

The menu had some interesting items but didn’t even come close to what her wife cooked daily. Still, she couldn’t afford to go hungry and ordered baked apples. As she waited for her meal, a pony took the seat across from her.

“Aurora?” The pony said. She only nodded.

“Name’s Wrecking Ball.” The gruff earth pony said. “Heard you’re interested in some work.” This was the code message.

Aurora shrugged. “If the caps are good.”

Satisfied with the response, her contact nodded. “I need a pony to help me build some new buildings. The Cosas need a training area and they pay well. I figure a pegasus would be handy.”

“Sounds good.” It was her cover while she investigated the town. It was easier to spy if she blended in. Besides, pony lips were looser if you were part of the community. Her new employer ordered something for himself and they ate in silence, waiting for the restaurant to clear before speaking more freely.

“Glad to see you here Aurora.” Wrecking Ball said. “Things have been mighty odd around here lately and I would appreciate the help. Is it true you have strange powers? You might consider me a foal for believing this junk so easily, but I’ve seen stranger.”

“How so?” Aurora raised an eyebrow.

“Well, for the last few months, ponies have spontaneously combusted. No sign that any weapon killed them.”

Sounds like a stand power. Wasn’t spontaneously combustion an old mare’s tale, anyway?

Her new employer pulled out a handkerchief and wiped his brow. “It gets worse and even stranger. There have been mysterious murders. A few here, but most in a town nearby called the Yellow Star’s Destruction. It’s a new town of former slaves. Been twenty deaths already with no sign of stopping.”

“How?”

Despite being a large imposing stallion, Wrecking Ball turned green. “Turned inside out. Not even criminal scum like the Cosas deserves that. They’re clueless about solving it.”

“I’ll deal with it,” Aurora swore she’d bring this monster to justice. Just as she feared, some ponies would use their stand powers for no other purpose than senseless murder.

“You make your nation proud.” Wrecking Ball beamed at her. He was a second-generation pegasus born. Though he’d never seen a cloud city, the stallion was a proud Enclave citizen.

Aurora looked around her surroundings and remembered how Break had a bowling cutie mark. Strange she’d find herself in a place like this. She finished the rest of her food before joining her new employer to meet the other ponies she’d be working alongside. They seemed nice enough ponies and they didn’t question her about her background or wings. She promised to go out drinking with them after her first work shift. It would give her more opportunity to learn the ponies of this town and gather more information about the mysterious deaths.