It's a hell of a thing to see people come together for a purpose. On a small scale, all survivor communities are examples of this. The last day, we've seen it on a large scale, and the willingness of people to go out of their way to help is pretty astounding.
I've got commitments from Sparta to provide fuel. Half a dozen communities within a reasonable distance have agreed to provide the manpower and vehicles for transport. No single community can absorb the sheer numbers of people from Black Mesa, so we're having to separate people into groups. I'm very proud to say my people at New Haven estimate that with the recent influx of trade goods and food, they can accommodate up to fifty Black Mesa residents.
It's a big undertaking, but the kids here and their small cadre of teachers are working through the details pretty quickly. I don't know if the other communities willing to take them in are going to do so permanently, but I've got promises to see them through the winter. That will give all of us time to work out something if needed.
Another piece of news that goes along with this: a group of marauders has offered to help. They claim they've never taken anyone captive, only killed when needed. I tend to believe them only because they openly admitted to stealing from others, hijacking caravans and the like. Their leader contacted me late yesterday, and we talked on the phone for a good long while. The name he gave me was Kincaid.
Kincaid has offered his help, and we'd be stupid to turn it down out of hand. I talked to my team, and Steve was the first to pipe up. He suggested that we put severe restrictions and security measures on Kincaid's group, so tight and restrictive that they'd have to be sincere to accept. I'm going to pose them to him this morning and see what he says.
His reasoning for wanting to help is sound and seems genuine. Kincaid told me he and his people were stunned by the news that a large group of kids was out here. He's tried to keep his crew from spiraling into something worse, closer to what other marauders are. I'm prepared to take a leap of faith. Partially because we need them. Partially because I want to believe there is hope for people like Kincaid and his crew.
That being said, we're not taking that leap blindly. Or without caution. We'll pose our demands and see what the response looks like. All there is to it.
We need every body and vehicle we can get. Since The Fall, I don't think anyone has tried to move so many people at one time. The local zombies are a greater threat than I think any of us can fully comprehend, and their numbers are slowly dwindling as the strong devour the weak. Observations lead me to believe they're planning something.
I really hoped there would never again be a point in my life where I was worried about zombies, re: dead human beings animated by an organism of unknown origin, actively using mental prowess to formulate a complex action. Now we're in that place again, much as New Haven was a few short months ago, where an unknown number of them could come down on us at any time, forcing us to fight.
Oh, and add to that the clearly spreading strains of mutation, making them stronger, tougher, smarter, and more cohesive as a unit.
Fun times, right? I wonder if this place has any whiskey...