These transcripts are for your enjoyment, but please do not reuse, readapt or reproduce without express written permission. ~ Ken
CAST & VOICE TALENT
KEN: This is Kenneth Vigue and we are a little under 2 weeks away from the start of our season. I wanted to first say that I hope you all are well. I know this has been one hell of a year. So many of you that I’ve talked to have been dealing with the emotional and mental repercussions of a year that just wouldn’t quit. This month is suicide prevention month and I mention it because many of you have sent me personal notes saying how much this show and our stories have helped give you a break from reality. I can’t tell you how humbling that is. I wanted to also say that everyone needs to talk and everyone needs to be heard. Friend of the show Pete Hines is a board member of TakeThis.org an organization dedicated to decreasing the stigma of and increasing the support for mental health in the gaming community and industry. If you are struggling, I encourage you to reach out. Because they are there to listen. This hits close to home for me, as we are unfortunately running a little behind schedule due to a situation I was dealing with last month that took its toll on me. Our YouTube and Facebook page has a video explaining it, but now that the situation as has been resolved, the cast is right now recording episode 1. In the meanwhile, I wanted to share another of Simon’s Lost Journals, discarded by him over a year ago on the outskirts of an Appalachian mountain town called Helvetia. For reasons that will become clear, the horror of his experience there last year for a parade of the damned kept him away from the town…until now. Hear that? The parade is about to begin, so grab a mask…and light the fire…then grab a mask….and light the fire…then grab a mask and light the fire…light the fire….light the fire…fire…fire….
SCENE #1: EXT. ROADWAY.
SFX: GRAVEL WALKING.
SIMON: Well Legs….we’re here. Helvetia. Come on…let’s scope out the buildings. Be ready for anything though…it’s too quiet here.
SFX: CHIPS NOISES
SIMON: What’s that? Yeah….one year ago. Slow and steady now…
SIMON: Seems pretty quiet. No decorations or anything up yet. I don’t understand…this place should be swarmed with critters and bots.
SFX: CHIPS NOISES
SIMON: Yeah…look…I want to thank you for finding me. If you hadn’t found my tent and got me out of that stash box I….well let’s just say there are worse places to end up than dead.
SFX CHIPS NOISES
SIMON: (Laughs) You can say that again. It started in the 1860s. German and Swiss immigrants fearing that their culture and traditions would fade over time being absorbed by the city of Brooklyn, New York where they had settled. So, they trekked on out here and built Helvetia.
SFX CHIPS NOISES
SIMON: By the 2000s though the place had become a big tourist trap. I left something behind last time, something I found, but didn’t understand at the time. Let’s go inside the Post Office here. It should still be in here.
SFX WALKING ON WOOD
SIMON: There. Post Office Box 12.
SFX RATTLING KEYS. DOOR OPEN
SIMON: YES! It’s still here!
SFX CHIPS NOISES
SIMON: Before I…well…I wanted to leave a record behind, as a warning, but the Overseer’s ranting during the trial reminded me of something. I don’t remember everything that happened here, it’s like it’s been blanked out…I just remember a name. Blackwell.
SFX TAPE TRANSITION NOISE
SIMON: Appalachia, Day 95: 61F, overcast. I am…still haunted by my time in that…place. I don’t feel comfortable in camp with that pink princess bed just sitting there reminding me of what I did. What happened in that Atomic Shop. I was wandering aimlessly when I stumbled on several Vault Dwellers headed east. I cautiously greeting a party of them and they informed me they were headed for Helvetia for a parade and festival. I asked them why and they got this glazed and bewildered look on their faces and one of them said, “For the masks.” I asked him, “what masks?” He said, “the Masks.” As I again asked what masks, one of them explained a little more about this parade called Fashnicht….Fashnocht….I don’t know. He kept correcting me on how I was butchering how it was pronounced in German and after he had well getting irritated, I started calling it the Fäatslüut Parade, which only see to piss them off. I again asked him what was so great about these masks and why they had to gather them. As I pressed on, they seemed to be getting increasingly agitated with my questioning. One of them was getting itchy with the trigger of his shotgun, so I beat a hasty retreat without saying goodbye. This parade has me curious though and I could use with a distraction. Paying a visit to an abandoned library nearby to see what I can dig up before going over there.
SIMON: Appalachia, Day 96: 72F, sunny. It took a while, but I found an old dog earned book in the library on the history and traditions of Helvetia. It goes something like this. Before the Great War, once a year the people of Helvetia would gather in the fading snows of winter. They would assemble wicker effigies of people that irritated them and create festive masks of paper mache and hard pasta. They would kill all the wildlife in a 10-mile radius and make sausage of a questionable nature. This ritual was designed to fend off the Great Knockers...the early spring door-to-door gypsies, holotape salesmen and children selling overpriced wrapping paper and magazine subscriptions. The festival, called Fasna….Fashnac…Fäatslüut...was ridiculous. But more ridiculous was the tourist trap building that popped up around it that over the year bastardized the town. They had a Richard’s, Believe It or Don’t filled with everything with tasteless trash and exhibits like the biggest hairball in the world and a stuffed Goatsquatch. One of the more curious roadside attractions was the Appalachia Vortex Haus of Mystery. The story goes that before the German settlers arrived from New York, local Native Americans described the place as a cursed spot, forbidden land. Birds would fly around it and horses would panic and refuse to get anywhere near the place. The Haus of Mystery was located in the center point of Helvetia, build by the Cooper family in the 1880s shortly after the town was settled. Very quickly something became clearly wrong when door stopped closing and windows wouldn’t open. One winter during the traditional Faatsluut Festival, the house crumbled off its foundation and its dimensions twisted and distorted before it settled in place at an odd angle. The Coopers abandoned the place and it was empty until a local pitched the idea of opening it as a mystery spot for tourists as the house did exhibit some weird phenomenon. The mystery of this place has me intrigued and I haven’t seen a parade since leaving the Vault. I feel compelled to visit, especially after I spotted a familiar blip headed that way on my PipBoy: Chad.
SIMON: Appalachia, Day 96: 72F, sunny. It was an eventful day. I arrived around 10am to find a town decorated in celebration. Garlands, flags, balloons and streamers. The robots fashioned decades ago were still ticking on with the yearly tradition, unaware of (or unable to) alter their programming post-Apocalypse. There was a Mr. Handy who served as a Master of Ceremonies jetting up and down the bridge yelling, “Happy Faatsluut!” He invited those of us gathered to join them in their celebration by helping prepare for the parade in exchange for these can’t-live-without-masks. He teased me with projected images of the most amazing paper mache and cloth masks I have ever seen…masks that must be imbued with their own secret power for them to be so lusted after. They would be sure to allow me greater skill in smiting my enemies. I did a quick recon of the buildings, armed and ready to fight, but there was no sign of Chad. After selecting decorations, murdering wildlife, smashing beer steins, popping balloons, and gathering branches, we are asked to help build a bonfire. With the task let to me, I gathered wood and fashioned my own Wicker Chad effigy. At last, the parade was ready. Our circular march around the town’s common was repeatedly interrupted by mutated frog-like gypsies and hideously mutated Wilderness Girls…armed with explosive boxes of mass-produced cookies. A cheerful, yet repetitive tune accompanied us along the parade route. As we passed the Mystery Haus, I felt…strange…like walking through water, the air had grown thick and the hair on my arms had risen as if anticipating a lightning strike that never came. There’s something wrong with that house. Anyway, fellow former Vault Dwellers assisted me in protecting the parade route and before long we stood before the Wicker Chad…ready to torch it. Suddenly from behind me…a great beast dropped from a tree. A legendary behemoth sloth, hideously malformed with radiation and a virulent case of dandruff. Before I had a chance to land a hit, a dweller by the name of FupaWonder9 killed it with one strike. Sadly, my attempts at clawing him in the testicles in anger were met only with impotent frustration. As the Wicker Chad burned into the night, I stared down at a crumpled paper bag, festooned with glitter and hard pasta that looked like the face of Elga Huffins, our Vault 76 lunch lady. This was not the mask I was hoping for. By the campfire I had a brief chat with a man about the history of the town and commented on all the voting machines and political posters everywhere. He told me a bizarre tale about a Senator Blackwell that had been investigating some bizarre construction work at the Whitespring and some strange investments by the Department of Agriculture. This guy had found a cave to the East, a hidden bunker. I’m going to head that way next week after I return to my camp for supplies. If that bunker is hidden it’s probably loaded with supplies. But for now, I go to sleep. I’ll return home in the morning.
SIMON: Appalachia, Day 96: 72F, sunny. It was an eventful day. I arrived around 10am to find a town decorated in celebration. Garlands, flags, balloons and streamers. The robots fashioned decades ago were still ticking on with the yearly tradition, unaware of (or unable to) alter their programming post-Apocalypse.
…wait. This isn’t…? I’ve recorded this already. I’m going outside to see what’s going on.
SIMON: Appalachia, Day 96: 72F, sunny. It was an eventful day. I arrived around 10am to find a town decorated in celebration. Garlands, flags, balloons and streamers. The robots…wait. What the fuck?? Something is very wrong here. A tune. A song…vibrating, repetitive and terrifying, claws at my mind. I marched again. I burned the Wicker Chad. I received a sad mask. What is happening to me?
SIMON: Appalachia, Day 96….DOO DOOO DOOO DOOO DAH DOOO DOOO…DOOO DOOO DOOOOO! HAPPY FÄATSLÜUT!
SIMON: Do you like my mask? Let us burn the Wicker Chad! March with me…
…help. The song…the song never stops. A trap. A fold in time. That house…a vortex. Can’t escape. No escape.
SIMON: Appacha…it never stops. This tune of damnation. One way out. I march. I become the Wicker Chad. I burn…to resurrect. Only way to break the endless parade… One way out… I’m going to burn now…
SFX TAPE TRANSITION NOISE
SIMON: Jesus….Jesus Christ…I…I remember now. That was the second time I ended up in the Atomic Shop. Senator Blackwell…that was the name.
SFX CHIPS NOISE
SIMON: You’re right….we need to get out of here before…
SFX MATERIALIZATION NOISES
SIMON: What the hell? Oh no no no….look! There! Garland is appearing…run! Run Legs! We need to get the fuck out of here before the loop closes again.
HANDY: Welcome to Helvetia! Happy Fasnacht!
SIMON: FUCK OFF!
HANDY: Where are you going? Don’t you want to march in the parade?
HANDY: But we have new masks!
SFX CHIPS NOISE
SIMON: Well hold up Legs…
HANDY: Allow me to present this year’s one of a kind collectible, one of a kind masks that you the possibility of winning this year: The Raven Mask, imbued with a dark power of top hat and spectacles because why not? The Deathclaw Mask to terrify your foes and get into some weird kink people are into these days. The Winter Man Mask, to put a cold chill into the hearts of your enemies. The Crazy Guy Mask to don the guise everyone’s drunken uncle at a pool party who wants to playfully nut tap you while guzzling beer. Last but not least, the Father Winter Helmet for those clattering power armor boys out there who are looking for a little variety in their military garb.
SIMON: Oh man….
SFX CHIPS NOISE
SIMON: Come on Legs, let’s just do one parade…then I’m sure we can get out of here…
SFX CHIPS NOISE
SIMON: Get off me! It’s fine I said! Just one parade…I want that Deathclaw Mask.
HANDY: (Ominously) Very well…let the festivities…begin. Are you ready to burn again Mr. Rex? We can’t have escaping again that easily can we? We have a lot of marching to do. Oh yes…a lot of marching. We can’t have you running off though came we?
SIMON: What? How…my legs…I can’t…I can’t move. What’s happening?
SFX CHIPS NOISE
SIMON: No….no…I can’t. My arms….I can’t move my arms. RUN! LEGS! RUN BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE! GOOOO!
SFX CHIPS NOISE.
SIMON: I….I’m….freezing up….can’t move…
HANDY: Oh dear me! It appears you’ve contracted AFK.
SIMON: (Mumble screaming)
HANDY: You know Mr. Rex, they have an old saying…it’s the fall that kills you. The house has waited a year. The house is hungry. It’s the GRIND that kills you. Happy Fasnacht Mr. Rex! Let’s march everyone! Happy Fasnacht Mr. Rex! Let’s march everyone! March…march…. marrrrrcchhhhhhh
CREEPY MUSIC PLAYS.