Book V: A Tale of Two Vessels - Chapter XIII: Nothing is Ever Easy
12.26: The reckoner and dog soldier fight to hold off a large pack of slither dogs as Ransom ascends the side of a broken, toppled building with Jones. They enter the building and make for the excavated tunnel while Horkos and Fenris make their stand by a broken window finishing off the slither dogs. Emerging from the old theater, Ransom and Jones spots a trio of wasters in gyro-copters on the hunt. They manage to reach the personnel carrier unseen. With Jones driving, they manage to move into a position close enough for Ransom to ambush one of the copters using his rocket belt. He slams into the pilot and knocks him out of his seat plummeting to his doom as Ransom seizes the gyro. After first trying to drive off the other two, Ransom shoots one down with his ripper gauntlet before the other flees. Meanwhile, Jones picks up the reckoner and dog soldier in the personnel carrier. Scouting ahead in the gyro-copter, Ransom spots two weapon’s nests along their path in ambush. He drops a bomb on one and the dog soldier hoses the other one down with his pulse cannon. As they roll out of the ruins onto old 80 by the lake of salt, a war truck blocks the road and Ransom picks up a number of other vehicles lying in wait. They attempt to outmaneuver the ambushers and come under heavy fire. The reckoner extends a psychic barrier around the personnel carrier and they reach Fort Lake. Against her better judgement, Jones is convinced by Ransom to make a copy of the Janic scroll. A few hours later, under cover of darkness with Mckenzie Barrows’ rig in the lead, they make a run a across the salt bound for a ruin at the foot of the mountains on the western side of the desert. There they run into Barrows’ trap. A mech waits in the center of the ruins crossroads. After letting Barrows pass, the mech-driver, White Snake, demands they hand over Jones and surrender. Despite Barrows attempt to counter, Ransom strikes a new deal with White Snake. The treacherous Barrows does get the last word just before White Snake obliterates his rig with him in it. Led by the mech, they reach Black Rock Station, pay off the mech-driver, and call for extraction.
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