(2016-03-24) On the Road to Sunray
On the Road to Sunray
Summary: Mon and Piper road trip to Sunray. It's surreally normal, tunes on the cd player, driving a pickup truckā€¦ They're on their way to Sunray to find a dealer in microhydroelectric equipment and liberate (steal) a turbine for the bathhouse/electric project. They find more than they bargain for, and Mon gets to know Piper better.
Date: 2016.03.24
Related: http://5thwave.wikidot.com/log:2016-02-24-to-build-a-bathhouse-pt1

Monica is, just now, upside down in the front seat of the pickup. She was asked to install a radio in a car. Now that /has/ been a while, but this old pickup's electrical system is pretty easy to get into, and its radio is stone dead, so here she is, legs kicked over the back of the bench seat against the back window, doing surgery. The smell of solder wafts up from down there a moment. She holds the butane iron so Piper can grab the handle. "Gimme a second to tape that up, and then try it. Easy on the volume, my head's right up against a speaker.

The soldering iron is gingerly taken by the handle by Piper sitting in the passenger seat as she watches Monica do her thing. She nervously bites on her bottom lip as she nods a moment, then realizes that she probably can't be seen nodding "'K." she replies, leaning over to turn the key into the accessory position, or whatever it's called when the power is on but the engine isn't turned on. Then moves to turn the radio on, but not to loud. She already has a collection of CD's that she has collected, she is a musicphile, and she slides one into the cd player, practically holding her breath while it loads up and cycles itself into position, it's only a matter of seconds before the classic rock tunes of Blondie fill the cab. "Yes!" she hasn't had many words today, but that one is quite clear.

Monica blinks a few times. "Oh man…" She grins and sings along when she recognizes it. She's only a little off pitch… She ducks her head over to the other speaker to make sure it's different… "Awesome. Where'd you find a CD player that works?" With that, she crawls back up out of the footwells and holds out her hand for the soldering iron, eager to cap it before any butane is wasted. It's one of those things on her list to figure out where to get…

Piper bites back a snicker at the pitchy singing, its not a mocking one, but one of amusement. The tool is gratefully handed back then she answers the question as best as she can "Had…" she pats the dashboard of the truck to indicate it "north." probably back when the camp was back in Nebraska. She unconsciously moves to the music playing "Thanks." now she has another source of music, the gramophone in the clubhouse and jukebox in the bar just wasn't enough for her. "Blondie 'k?" she asks and holds out the cds in case Monica wants to pick the music…she is driving. Most of the bands are all pre-1980, though there are a few opera CD's in there too.

Monica snaps the cap back on the soldering iron. Deprived of oxygen, its catalytic heater shuts down quickly. "Ahh, okay. Yeah, Blondie's fine. My parents used to play her a lot." She scootches up into the driver's seat and buckles in after she gets her toolbox buttoned up. "So… Sunray?"

A thumbs up is given and the other cds are stored in the glove box for now. Pulling closed the door she buckles her own self in then rolls down the passenger side window. Piper kinda knows what they are going out for, windmills or some such, but not knowing how long that would take she packed a few extra essentials and of course is armed with her usual pistol and rifle. There is a twirl of finger and she motions forward, a motion she probably picked up from some military themed movie or something in the past.

Monica cranks the engine, checks the gas gauge, and drives out. "This feels weirdly normal, you know?" She keeps the speed down. Nobody's maintaining the roads, and heaven only knows what's been strewn over them in the tornado, to say nothing of everything else that's happened. Her own rifle is in the back in its scabbard. She wasn't planning to hunt today, so the shotgun is back home. But she has her pistol and her Bowie knife. And a toolbox. And her oxy-gasoline torch, because it makes breaking and entering much easier. Mon doesn't take trips, she mounts expeditions. Still. She listens to the familiar old music and drives contentedly for a while. "So you've been with Camp Hope since Nebraska?"

Piper leans back, crossing her socked feet and resting them out the window. Oh talking she knew this was going to happen so she takes her notebook and pencil out. She's learned a new trick on how to communicate when she can't well communicate. She writes and then reads what she wrote. It isn't foolproof, but it's a step in the right direction, "I do." she nods as she reads her own words. "Yes." she didn't have to right that answer down at least the next bit she does, "Since June." obviously of last year. No one knows what she was doing prior that besides collecting children and creating one of her own. "…people. Good…staying." she tries again "Was more people." she must mean back in Nebraska "Good you're staying."

Monica nods and smiles a little. "Thanks. I don't think I'd have lived much longer if I hadn't found Camp Hope, Texas when I did. Hunting was lousy, my teeth were killing me, and I hadn't found enough water to wash in for three months. Thanks. You bet I'm staying." She thinks over what Piper said. "So you guys lost a lot of people then. I'm sorry. Little bastards in Nebraska almost got me, too. So… how did you wind up with all those children? I mean besides the one that you gave birth to. I can figure that one out on my own." Mon blushes. Let's not have another discussion like yesterday's, please, oh please?

"Same." Piper replies sounding a bit grim. But it wouldn't have been the elements, or teen soldiers or Silencers that did her in. She was her own worst enemy when she joined the camp. She's improved since then. Doodling in the notebook, drawing musical staffs and inserting notes and whatnot, as her foot moves to the music that plays, she nods "Ov-er half." she supplies about the numbers. There is a bit of a brow furrow. In over the months she has been with the group no one has asked that, not even Quinton. Of course of everyone she is the most private on account of her issues "Becca…" that's the three year old that could easily be mistaken for her sister, "BFF's…" so she was probably charged with keeping her safe. "Found others..not Caro." Caro is the oldest "Camp already, orphan." and Piper already had the other kids, why not one more. A bit of a stormy or is in angsty, a little of both, look is given to Monica at her seemingly joking about how she came by baby Quinn. It's clearly a touchy subject with her too.

Monica looks at Piper, and her expression falls. She looks back at the road. "Sorry. I wasn't thinking." No matter how that baby came to be, since it's not Quintons (she asked) either Piper loved and lost … or worse. Ugh. She nods at everything else Piper said. "From what I've seen, you're … an awesome mom. It kind of gives me hope for the future. That we'll have one, you know? It's not something I'd given much thought to before everything fell apart."

<FS3> Pied-Piper rolls Alertness: Good Success.

Not Quinton's but named after him. Must be a story there too. The apology is shrugged off but the compliment on her skills as a mother is chuckled at, "Thanks." she can understand what Monica is saying "Told that…" there is a beat "before." she doesn't say by whom. Something about the environment in the truck has her starting to talk easier, even without having to write. With her foot still going to the music beat and her music themed doodling its not a hard one to figure out that it is the music. The feet come out of the window and she leans forward pointing to something(s) sticking up on the horizon "What's that?"

Monica looks up and smiles. "Well. That makes things simpler. If they're small enough, or we can steal a trailer or something."

Monica looks up and smiles. "Well. That makes things simpler. If they're small enough, or we can steal a trailer or something." She glances over at Piper. "Wind turbines. This could be a hell of a trip if we can get both wind and water turbines. That'd mean all I need to do is get the Corps of Engineer guys to go over the town's power lines, turn off all the empty buildings and make sure the lines to the stuff we do want are good. Plus put up a couple 80 foot towers, massive plumbing… but it cuts down the number of miracles that have to happen."

The notebook is set on the bench seat beside her and her county map, with all its markings, symbols and notations comes out of her pack. Unfolding it partially she begins to pinpoint where they are on it and does so within a matter of seconds. Piper looks out the windows, leans over to check the speed and triangulates all the data and marks on the map where exactly the windmills are. Piper glances at Monica as she speaks and at least this time she can follow what is being said. She isn't sure 80 foot towers are a great idea, but ultimatly that isn't her call. "Miracles…every day." she does sorta grin at that. They wake up still alive in a world where the alien menance can kill them at any second. That's a miracle to her.

Monica notes the map. "Or, you can mark on the map where the windmills are and we can come back with a semi or something. Good idea." She drives into the wind farm in search of small turbines. "Looking for small turbines. They'd be about.. maybe six or eight feet, not including the tail. The big megawatt ones, we'd have to get a train put together to move them. They weigh like 40 tons each. The ones we're looking for only weigh a couple."

<FS3> Monica rolls Luck: Success.
<FS3> Pied-Piper rolls Singing: Great Success.

There is a grin given to Monica. Piper notes all sorts of things on her map, from places she found great stuff, to locations of certain plants. Windmills are no exception "Best if.." she isn't totally verbal so has to write some of what she is saying "brought Eva and Elan." they know this mechanics stuff, unlike her, who didn't even know what a soldering iron was. Being told what to look for she nods and unbuckles herself and pulls herself partially out the window to sit in it instead. If Quinton were here she would certainly get a major frowning at for that. As she looks for the smaller windmills she drums on the roof to the music and absently begins to sing the Blondie song blasting at the moment "Roll me in designer sheets / I'll never get enough / Emotions come, I don't know why / Cover up love's alibi / Call me (call me) on the line / Call me, call me any, anytime / Call me (call me) oh love…" there isn't any pitchness there, just a warm powerful soprano, belting out the lyrics, as she looks for windmills.

Monica blinks and tries to keep her eyes on the road. It's an infectious song, arguably the best one Blondie did, and Mon finds herself singing along, quietly so she can hear Piper more than herself. Piper may just be belting it out for her own amusement, but most of the world hasn't been in the cab of a pickup with a professionally trained voice. And the only music Mon's heard recently was Johnny Horton, on the old jukebox. This is much, much better. She smiles, fighting to keep it small enough that cold air doesn't hit her bad teeth, but… for this moment, driving through a wind farm with Piper, and listening to the woman sing… life is good.

Either she doesn't see one or she really isn't paying all that much attention with her singing and drumming like she is. In fact even as Monica is driving Piper gets risky and moves from the sitting in the window and onto the trucks roof, hanging her legs down the passenger side of the window, continuing her singing as it goes from one song to the next.

Monica stops, gently. Piper may have missed it, but Mon did not, and regardless, she'd like not to be the one who has to bring Piper home with broken bones and scrapes. She taps Piper's foot, sticks her arm out the driver's side window and points. "I think we're in luck."
<FS3> Pied-Piper rolls Reaction: Success.

Yeah that would be bad, though it wouldn't be the first time it happened. The foot tapping has Piper looking toward where Monica is pointing and her singing comes to a sudden halt as she truck does. "Great." she stands on the roof and jumps down from it, landing in a crouch a couple feet a way. "Now what?" they found it, but she isn't sure she has what it takes to help Monica dismantle the thing.

Monica looks up at it. "Good question. We should be able to just tilt the tower back down and steal it, then come back for the tower later. But if we have it on the map, how about we go on into Sunray and get the water turbine now if there is one, and come back for this with a few more people?

<FS3> Monica rolls Search: Good Success.
The rest of the shopping trip is boring, and OOCly Piper had to go. Anyway, they go to Sunray, break into the hydroelectric dealer as required, and steal the hydro-turbine, and a spare, and even a few pieces of pipe to go with it. Best not to overload the pickup too much. It's the only one with tunes.

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