For decades, the KFS Army hasn’t fought anything but “starving river pirates” and slave rebellions. These pirates and escaped slaves live in Mocambos. A typical Mocambo is Leetown
The first – and still biggest – Red Stripe operation.
This Red Stripe facility is known as “Intersection Market & Motel”. It is located on the outskirts of North Platte Nebraska, near the intersection of I-80 (east-west) and I-83 (north -south)
The facility is robust even by Red Stripe standards of fortification: the walls are concrete and reinforced with steel rails (taken from the nearby marshalling yards of Union Pacific). The only external decoration is a stripe of red paint around the upper edge of the exterior wall
Initial impression: A hollow square, 2 storeys high, and over 150 metres wide.
The “courtyard” is approximately 100 metres square and open to the sky. Once inside, the visitor is welcome to visit any of the stores and businesses that operate here. The more established enterprises have permanent facilities in the many niches and openings that line the walls, while other entrepeneurs operate from temporary stalls that are dotted around the courtyard. Some of these stalls might only be present on Market Days (about once a week)
Red Stripe Motel: The upper floor is mostly used for accommodation. Many merchants pay to live “above the shop” (and appreciate such decadent luxuries as indoor plumbing) but there is enough space to provide 30 private rooms and two dormitories. For the convenience of Badge or Slaver customers, each dormitory is lockable from the oustide and only has (small) skylights
Red Stripe Stables: food & shelter for horses. A small blacksmith shop is also found here
North Platte Bodyworks: Craftsmen working with wood, plastic or sheet-metal can provide all your repair & maintenance needs (they manufacture & repair horse-drawn wagons/carts, also repair the bodywork on trucks & cars)
Intersection Fuel and Service: Mechanics and distillers. This business has both the equipment and the skills needed to perform routine maintenance on most vehicles (although Bikers & Truckers usually just rent the space and tools and do all work themselves). They make ethanol fuel, and “brew up” biodiesel. One valued service that they provide is the repair of tires.
Red Stripe Savings Loan & Pawn (SLAP): You can’t run an economy without some sort of money and this is where the “money” is stored. Currency used within the Trading Post is “Red Stripe Cash” or RSC. All other currency (anything from scrap metal to manufactured goods to gold to KFS credits to Texas Dollars) is converted into RSC and becomes basically a bookkeeping exercise – this avoids the problem of bartering (“I’ll give you 2 sheep for that saddle” “But I don’t need sheep, I want a revolver”). The SLAP also provides a valued service by issuing “certificates of deposit” . It’s a lot easier for merchants/truckers to tranport a piece of paper to another Trading Post than transport the goods they exchanged in return for their original stock. Bandits are also discouraged because these certificates can be queried by other Red Stripe Trading Posts (the network operates a crude morse code radio system). Certificates can be cashed at any Red Stripe facility
US Mail: Local mailmen operate from this establishment. It is a safe place to leave/collect mail and staff will make local deliveries (they have horses and a couple of motorbikes with sidecars). They also provide a writing/reading service for customers who are not literate. At least one Mailman will be designated to escort any mail which is being forwarded on to the next Red Stripe facility
Slaughterer: Animals are killed and processed here. Meat and raw materials are sold to a wide range of businesses. Some of the businesses include: butchers, tanners, candlemakers (and biodiesel makers), catgut makers, glue makers, etcetera
Red Stripe Mall: This is where the Red Stripe sells goods to the general public on Market Days. They like to showcase rare/expensive items
Law Office: Disputes, arbitration, contracts and accusations are dealt with by the “Judge” , her staff of clerks and 5 large, quiet men with steel clubs. The judge is also a representative of the local Overlord and has a great deal of influence.
Freddies Bar & Grill: a restaurant/cafe/bar, “Freddies” is usually busy and is renowned for having the best beer and the prettiest waitresses (some of whom may be available for “other services”)
Keela Bakery: Producing bread daily for the facility and local families. The bread is rumored to have medicinal powers. (advertising slogan “Electric Bread made with ELECTRIC ovens”)
Red Striper Brewery: The Platte river isn’t ideal drinking water – but the products of the Brewery are a lot safer to drink than the local water. Most of the “beer” is pretty weak (and often diluted further by customers) but it’s not a bad way to rehydrate after a day’s work
Power & Light: The facility’s electric hydropower generator is controlled from here (most Red Stripe facilities use hydropower and this location uses a generator attached to the I-83 bridge). Customers can also charge batteries.
Clinic: An Emdee & a couple of nurse/midwives are welcome guests of the Red Stripe Corporation (no rent is charged)
Security: A dozen men & women patrol the facility. They are usually armed with clubs & revolvers – but have access to heavier weaponry
Types of Market Traders
These are stall-operated businesses and are often only present on market Days – many are operated by local farming families and craftsmen
Cutlery (knives a specialty – handles are made from horn)
Gunsmith & Ammo (after a few unfortunate accidents, Red Stripe policy is not to allow ammunition manufacture inside the facilities)
Cheeses & smoked Meat
Glass goods (modern manufacture)
Jams & preserves
Printer, Bookseller & Bookbinder (some old, some new)
Paper (poor quality stuff – more like papyrus or parchment)
Tailors (also sell buttons, thread)
Rope & strings (rawhide & catgut)
Smokes (dried tobacco and ‘herbal’ substances)
Plastic-worker (melts & recycles old plastic)
Bone-worker (needles, buttons, buckles, decorative handles)
Hardware (nails, screws, hinges)
Candles & Lanterns
Kindergarten – a safe place for kids while you shop or go to the bar
When the Truckers, Bikers, Salvagers and Wanderers come by, the Courtyard Market is a crowded, noisy place – with a wide range of goods & services available. It’s a particularly BIG day if some Balloonists make an entrance or a tribe of Amerindians appear.
An Encounter with Townspeople. Or are they “Badges”, “Slavers” or even a “University”?
The City of Poplar Bluff – “The Gateway To The Ozarks” – is one of the many trading communities that have appeared along the Interstates and rivers that lead to and from ‘civilized’ areas such as the New Confederacy, and the KFS. It provides a market and a way-station for river traders and Gypsy Truckers. The City has survived – and even prospered – because it ‘enjoys’ a number of advantages. It has a strategic location: the city is at the crossroads of U.S. Highway 60 and U.S. Highway 67. The surrounding area is commonly called the “Three Rivers” . The three rivers (Current River, Black River, and St. Francis River) are about 60 kilometres apart and Poplar Bluff is near the the center (located on the Black River).
Poplar Bluff has 3 Other assets that may impact any Morrow Project operations in the Three Rivers area
1. Three Rivers Community College provides training and education to the brighter/luckier/wealthier members of the community. As well as general education and some professional courses, it has a well-respected paramedic course. Each year, the top paramedic student is accepted for further training in the KFS.
Three Rivers College also trains craftsmen, mechanics/technicians and gunsmiths.
The City is extremely proud of the college and most of the local elite are alumni. They meet for monthly reunions and contribute a tithe to college finances – all of which gives the College staff an immense amount of influence on local politics
2. Troop E of the Missouri Highway Patrol has been headquartered just outside Poplar Bluff since the 1930’s – and now recruits exclusively from the City. All new recruits must be graduates of the Community College’s “Criminal Justice” course (which includes training in weapons use, law, and the operation of motor vehicles and small boats).
The Patrol attempts to enforce laws for the protection of travellers and to ensure that Highways are safe and the 3 rivers kept navigable. Unfortunately, this laudable activity involves some questionable interpretation of legalities and – if arbitrary fines cannot be paid – involuntary work on repair gangs. Even more regrettably, it’s common for these “repair gangs” to find themselves allocated to other work. Some of the more troublesome (or attractive) workers have been “leased” to the Kentucky Free State or the New Confederacy. Few of these convicts ever return
Incidentally, it’s difficult to say which is the best customer. The NC only wants to “lease” Black convicts, which limits the opportunities for trade but they do provide trade goods that the KFS won’t.
3. Poplar Bluff Municipal Airport. The KFS has negotiated rights to use the Airport as a Weather Station and an emergency landing zone for its aircraft (a P47 visits at least once each year). The KFS pays rent in 2 ways: a little refined fuel and regular weather forecasts (both important to a farming community).
A KFS watchtower has been constructed at the Airport and is home to a small garrison of specialists
ANNOUNCER: Good evening Listeners, thank you for joining us for the latest in our series of live interviews. Tonight we’re privileged to have a most unusual visitor in the studio. I’d like to introduce the leader of the group that everyone has been talking about: Team Leader Petra Charendoff, the commander of Morrow Project Recon Team WY-R-148.
Sacagawea produces a limited range of weaponry
Pistols: for the forces are usually revolvers – considered only as concealable backup weapons. The Amerind Empire uses a copy of the snubnose S & W Model 10, in 38 special. Wealthy individuals sometimes possess semi-automatic pistols, but this is more a question of fashion.
The Sacagawea paramilitary forces use a 6-5mm bolt action rifle.
Sacagawea is a city of approximately 50,000 people. It straddles the Snake River (on the sites previously occupied by Lewiston, Idaho and Clarkston, Washington).
In Sacagawea, there are few laws – except for those that concern property. Penalties are harsh. beginning with flogging, or a day tied to a post in the Market. The more serious penalties include branding, mutilation or death. Citizens can be exiled for crimes against the City or the Empire.
Sacagawea has a Chief, who is selected by vote from all citizens. Only landowners above the age of 35 can stand for election. The Chief serves for 5 years – and cannot be re-elected.
The Sacagawea upper class is composed of those who are major landowners and have a claim to Amerind ancestry. Most come from the Nez Perce tribes, but there are also members of the Coeur d’Alene, the Kootenai, and the Shoshone-Bannock Tribe.
The cities of Lewiston and Clarkston were lucky enough to be far enough away from the nukes. However they were situated on excellent communications routes and were in danger of being swamped by refugees.
Law and order rapidly collapsed – only the State College functioned as a provider of (tenuous) stability and government. The two cities were dying – until the the second winter after Death Day – when the tribes came off their reservations and brought food and security.
Continue reading “Sacagawea history and The Snake River Valley”