In the year 2209 the world as we once knew it changed when the Big One fell to Earth, causing half the living creatures of the world to mutate. Most of the world became a wasteland. Cities that survived became known as Oasis's.
"Hey Stumpy! Who was that girl you used to run around with?" yelled a fat drunk to Stumpy, who was sitting at a table with his left leg up on a stool as he cleaned his revolver.
"Never you mind, Bill," answered Stumpy. "She's long gone. I got a good woman now."
Molly smiled at him from behind the bar as she grabbed a bottle of hooch.
Bill gulped. "Ah.. sorry Molly.."
"It's okay Bill," Molly replied as she poured Bill another glass. "People like hearing stories about Red Cat Jane, the scourge of the Banking Elite."
"Never mind that woman," said Stumpy. "I don't have time for people who have to steal to make a living. I made my cash the old fashioned way. In the great Scrap Rush of '49, I came all the way from.."
The bar collectively groaned. 'Not this story again.' 'Always going on about the Scrap Rush.' 'I like this story.. hey don't throw things at me.'
Stumpy finished his long story, "and that's why they call me.."
"Stumpy 49er!" came a brutish voice from the door.
Stumpy looked over at the owner of that voice, a large mutant; half man, half ram. Three large, mean looking men came in behind him. They had matching tattoos, MPG, which stood for Meat Packing Gang, a vicious gang that formed at Abomasum's Meat and Cheese Packing Factory just outside Golden Gate Oasis and not far from Clementine. The ram man was a top enforcer for MPG, known as Slag the Head Crusher, since he liked to head butt his victims to death.
"My pal Swiss warned you to pay your protection fees," Slag threatened Stumpy, pointing at his tall, mutant buddy, Swiss, who had over a dozen eyes on his face and neck. "Since you haven't paid us yet, Boss Abomasum sent me here to remind you that we all need protection."
As he said this he put his hand on Bill's shoulder, who quickly fumbled for his wad of cash to give to Slag.
Stumpy continued to clean his revolver, with his bum, left leg still up on the stool. "I don't need protection. I've always done fine on my own."
"You do need our protection," Swiss spoke up. "I hear you've been having trouble with the Bird Man Clan, lately." Slag gave Swiss a mean look for talking out of turn.
"I've handled them just fine. Like I said 'don't need protection, don't want none." replied Stumpy.
Slag laughed. "Well, that's fine. Boss Abomasum told me to tell you we don't really need you to pay for protection, if you don't want none. However, we do need you to pay our beer tax. You see, anyone selling alcohol to the good people under our protection need to pay their taxes."
"I pay taxes to the settlement of Clementine." replied Stumpy.
"Well, now you'll pay taxes to MPG as well." said Slag.
"No I won't!" replied Stumpy as he finished cleaning his revolver and started putting it back together.
The bar patrons all got up and began to leave. Slag walked up to Stumpy and grabbed the revolver out of his hand.
The bar was empty now except Molly, who was still behind the bar, the four MPG thugs and Stumpy.
"I was hoping you'd say no," Slag said. "Swiss, grab the girl, we're going to have some fun today."
The lanky, multiple eyed mutant walked toward Molly. She reached under her dress and pulled out a red handled revolver with a cat emblem on the side. "Stop right there."
"Holy crud!" Swiss gasped. "Slag, I recognize that emblem."
Slag looked over at Molly. "Put that gun away, girlie. You don't want to mess with the Meat Packing Gang."
"Slag! I'm telling you I recognize that gun," Swiss interrupted. "Hell, I recognize her from the old Wanted posters. She's Red Cat Jane! The Lawboys will want to know about this."
Molly winced hearing that name. "Big mistake, Swiss face!"
She shot Swiss between the eyes.
Stumpy lifted his bum leg toward the other three thugs and pulled a switch, firing a shotgun blast that blew two of them backwards.
Slag, who had begun moving towards Molly, got a little bit of buckshot in his hip. It barely slowed him down as he rushed toward the bar, leapt over it and tackled Molly to the ground, slapping the revolver from her hand.
She struggled to keep her arms between her and his dangerous forehead and horns, putting a broken bottle up to his chin to keep him from head butting her. He wrestled with her to keep her arms pinned to the ground and reared his head back for his crushing head butt.
His head exploded.
Stumpy was sitting on top of the bar, his bum, fake leg pillowing smoke out the barrel, pointed at Slags headless body. "Two barrels, Head Crusher!"
Stumpy helped Molly get up.
"Great! Now what do we do?" she asked.
Stumpy kissed her. "We had to do it. That one recognized you, Jane."
"We've got the Banking Elite after me. The Lawboys are still searching for me. The Bird Man Clan hates you, for some reason. Now we've got these MPG thugs gunning for us," Molly said. "We just attract trouble. Where do we go from here?"
"Start over again. Burn down the bar. Collect the insurance. Move to another settlement," Stumpy answered. "I hear P-Town is nice."
Molly sighed. "I was really starting to like Clementine."
to be continued..