|Date of Birth:||2152|
|Date of Death:||2201|
One of the Warlords of Detroit, Killmeister rose from the ruins of his predecessors to claim power. While his reign of terror would ultimately be cut short, he none the less had an impact on the Detroit Wasteland for years to come. Killmeister has the dubious distinction of being the last of the warlords, as well as being the only one of them to have ever been captured alive.
Born to Kill(meister)
The son of a pair of scavengers, Greg Killmeister was born in a community in upstate, rural Michigan. As could be expected, he grew up in a life of abject poverty, his family barely scraping by with whatever resources they could find. As soon as he was old enough, Greg was pressed into service by his parents, used to ferret out salvage by clambering into tunnels or tightly-packed ruins that they were too big or clumsy to get into. This was hazardous and filthy work; more than once Greg was almost killed by a sudden cave-in or dangerous animals lurking in those ruins he was exploring.
There were other hazards in his early life as well. Raiders were a frequent threat and often would come after the community. Having no real way to defend themselves, his family and the rest of the community were forced to hand over a portion of what little they had or face the consequences. As he reached adolescence, Killmeister came to despise his parents for their apparent weakness and inability to defend themselves. At the same time, he also began to idolise the raiders for their strength and willingness to take from others in order to survive.
Following a raid in 2167, Greg Killmeister chose to run away from home and instead follow the raiders back to their camp. He made it back there before they noticed him and captured him; however, Greg simply stated that he’d wanted to be captured so he could join their band. The lead raider, Mean Jean, was impressed with his pluck and determination and chose to give him a chance. Knowing that he’d only have the one opportunity, Killmeister did all that he could to prove his worth, from fighting in the frontlines of their raids to scavenging for supplies.
This success would only last a single year before the Raiders faced a new threat. Their band was targeted by Preah Khan, who was in the process of building an army in order to conquer the Detroit Wastelands. Preah simply rolled over the smaller Raider band, surrounding them and quickly forcing a surrender. The survivors, Greg Killmeister among them, were offered a simple choice; join Preah Chan’s growing army or be killed. To a man, they agreed, and were quickly assimilated into his growing army.
Greg was not disappointed at this turn of events by any means. If anything, he embraced the opportunity, seeing Preah Khan and his dreams of conquest as being a path to even greater power than a small, rural raider gang could ever offer him. Greg was quick to put himself forward, willing to risk his life in return for recognition by Preah Khan that might, in turn, serve his own ambition. Initially, his small size and slight frame made him valuable as a scout, leading the way for the army’s forces. He proved to be adept at this work, helping to clear a path towards the Detroit Wasteland.
Killmeister would find his real fame as the army approached the Detroit Metropolitan Airport. With many of its buildings in ruins and its outskirts a jumble of wrecked aircraft, the airport was seen as both a potential threat and haven. Preah Khan wanted to use it as his base of operations, the staging ground from which his army would conquer the Detroit Wasteland. However, he also wanted to know if it would be safe for them to inhabit; after all, his army would be no use to him if they were being plucked off by marauding creatures.
Knowing full well that exploring the airport would be risky, Killmesiter immediately stepped forward to volunteer his services. His goal was twofold; to advance Preah Khan’s forces, while also showing how valuable he was to the Warlord. He was placed at the head of a scouting team, the rest of whom were other absorbed tribals and raiders like himself. What little information they knew about the airport made it abundantly clear that this would not be an easy operation. Having been damaged by a bomb in the Great War, the facility had been shunned by the inhabitants of the Detroit Wasteland since, being seen as too hazardous to be worth settling or even scavenging.
None the less, Killmeister was determined to prove his worth. His approach to the airport was cautions, but at the same time, determined. Once within its grounds, he found that it was home to a substantial colony of Feral Ghouls, ones that were both those who had been there during the Great War and others that had accumulated since. Killmesiter knowingly and willingly used his own men as expendable ‘bait’ to locate and flush out Ghoul packs, while also investigating the more damaged structures. The result was that his team suffered numerous casualties, but managed to paint an accurate picture of the airport and its inhabitants.
His assessment was that the major passenger structures, such as the terminal, were still more or less intact and that there was no substantial radiation contamination. However, they also were infested with Feral Ghouls. Preah Khan felt that the airport would be suitable for his purposes, promoting and rewarding Killmesiter for his efforts (The losses that Killmeister’s forces had suffered were deemed ‘acceptable’). Armed with this information, his forces advanced on the airport, exterminating the Feral Ghouls and taking it for their own. Preah Khan had his base, and Killmeister was rapidly becoming an indispensable part of his force.
Kill and Killmesiter again
Killmeister continued to lead the way for Preah Khan’s forces as they made inroads into the city itself. He lead the conquest of North Point Village, capturing the small community that had taken up residence there and absorbing them into their army. He also lead strikes against several Raider Gangs, leading to their destruction or absorption. However, his most important achievements would be in clearing a path towards Chryslus Castle, one of the Detroit Wastelands’ major settlements. By the time that Preah Khan was poised to strike at it, Killmeister had become one of his closest lieutenants, and a vital part of his war machine.
However, there was an unexpected complication. Both Preah Khan and Killmesiter had been so focused on Chryslus Castle that they had failed to notice the presence of the Butcher’s army. The rival Warlord had also been moving to take the Castle, and was not about to let somebody snatch her prize from her. Launching a series of pre-emptive strikes, she smashed her forces into Preah Khan’s northern advance, stopping it dead in its tracks.
As the battles between the two forces bogged down, Killmesiter was given the task of finding either a new route to the Castle or alternatively, a new target to conquer. What Killmesiter found was that the Butcher’s forces were more extensive then expected, and had allready moved to encircle the settlement. Seeing that they would not be able to bypass her, he instead took it upon himself to find out as much about her army as he could so that Preah Khan would be able to destroy it. Using the information he had gathered, Killmeister and Preah Khan began devising a plan to crush the Butcher’s forces.
Before they could put it into operation, disaster struck. In mid-2177, the Butcher’s forces annihilated Preah Khan’s northern front, destroying a not insubstantial portion of his forces. In the process, they also killed Bob Murderface, his second in command. Not only was Preah Khan forced to pull back from the Crhyslus Castle front, but they also now needed to find themselves a new second. Seeing how he had loyally and reliably served him, the Warlord promoted Killmesiter to the position.
His first task was to deal with a new threat that had emerged. Preah Khan’s already tenuous position was now being threatened by the arrival of a new Warlord; Bun-Bun the Destroyer. This new opponent represented a whole new kind of threat. Not only did they lead their own army, but Bun-Bun possessed a working Power Armour suit, making the Warlord a considerable menace in and of themselves. Seeing him as an obstacle to his own goals, Preah Khan placed Killmeister in charge of defeating this new menace.
Given considerable leeway to act, Killmesiter launched what he called ‘Operation Kill the Rabbit’, an attempt to lure out and kill Bun-Bun. In order to accomplish this goal, Killmeister armed his forces with stores of heavy weapons from the warlord’s arsenal. His hope was that they would be adequate to bring down the rival Warlord’s Power armour, ending their threat. Furthermore, Killmesiter saw such as an opportunity to potentially absorb survivors from Bun-Bun’s army, which would build hius own powerbase.
Things did not go to plan. It was fair to call Operation Kill the Rabbit a complete disaster. The often poorly-trained and chem-addled soldiers that Killmeister had at his disposal lacked the training and discipline to effectively use their weapons, resulting in a considerable waste of ammunition in failed attacks. Furthermore, Bun-Bun proved to be a lot more canny a foe than expected, and developed something of a knack for spotting ambushes and either evading them or turning them around. The result was a considerable loss of lives and resources for no real gain.
The real salvation of operation Kill the Rabbit proved to be inadvertent and unplanned. Bun-Bun would find themselves drawn into a conflict with rival warlord, Black Alice, who also possessed a power armour suit. While the pressure on Preah Khan’s forces from Bun-Bun had been relieved, it was not due to Killmeister’s efforts. Consequently, while he maintained his rank, his status was somewhat diminished due to his failure.
[THE MIDDLE YEARS]
Great News For All Readers
[The big secret that changes everything goes here]
Killmesiter was in the midst of solidifying the Park Lane front when he received the news of Jimmy Bones’ coup. In an instant, all of his hard work was undone by a usurper who just happened to have been in the right place at the right time and made their move before he could. Jimmy Bones immediately sent out ultimatums to Preah Khan’s surviving lieutenants, Killmeister among them. They could submit to his rule or be destroyed.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, most of them chose to stand on their own, immediately fragmenting Preah Khan’s army into warring factions. Killmeister, who by this point was the oldest and most experienced of these new warlords outside of Jimmy Bones himself, tried to rally support behind him as the better alternative. Several of Preah’s former lieutenants chose to side with him, but the majority opted to stand on their own and carve out their own empires.
This saw the start of a race between Killmeister and Jimmy Bones to crush as many of these groups as they could and absorb the survivors. Each knew that they could not tolerate the other’s existence, and neither could suffer the other to live. For the next year, the pair of them carved up what had been Preah Khan’s army and territories, forcing those that had once served the first Warlord to pick a side between the pair of them or risk being destroyed.
Killmesiter held an early advantage in this race, having played on his past loyalty to Preah Khan to win over followers while at the same time painting Jimmy Bones as a usurper. He also played on racial fears as well, pointing out that Jimmy was a Ghoul and as such, probably also a disease-ridden cannibal that would eat his own followers and go feral at a moment’s notice. While this risked alienating those Ghouls that were still following him, Killmeister knew that since the majority of his army was human that the benefits would outweigh the potential losses.
After hunkering down for the winter, Killmeister made his mover in early spring. He moved to surround Jimmy Bones’ loyalists, cutting them off and then forcing them to surrender or be destroyed. However, he also erred towards mercy and encouraged such from his own forces in order to preserve both their numbers and the potential pool of recruits he could use to make up for his own losses. In many ways, this campaign would be the most careful and measured of all of the Warlords. Killmeister was not only seeking to destroy his enemy, but also planning for where he would direct his army once it was reunified.
After a month of fighting, Killmesiter had cut off the Detroit Airport from the rest of the Wasteland, severing Jimmy Bones’ link with his forces. Those still active in the Detroit Wasteland were given the option to surrender; most chose to do such and were simply reintegrated into Killmeister’s army. Even then, this reunified force was but a fraction of Preah Khan’s pre-coup army; besides those lost to the infighting, Killmeister had opted to bypass or ignore other factions in favour of focusing on the biggest threat. And still others had been lost to the forces of Durham Red or the other remaining warlords.
None the less, Killmesiter was in a position to end this distraction and bring his house to order. His army marched on the Detroit Metropolitan Airport, overwhelming Jimmy Bones’ remaining forces through their sheer numbers. While Bones’ loyalists, many of which were Ghouls, made the invasion a bloody affair, at the end of the day Killmesiter took the airport and crushed their resistance. Jimmy Bones was captured alive but wounded. He was bought before Killmesiter who simply executed him on the spot.
The Last King of Detroit
Having put his house in order, Killmeister set his sights on his actual goal of conquering the Detroit Wasteland, a feat that had eluded the other Warlords so far. The fragmentation of Preah Khan’s empire had left him with a substantially reduced force, but also with a strong opportunity. Time, attrition and constant warfare had taken their toll on his opponents as well. Now there was only a single Warlord left; Durham Red. Furthermore, Durham’s forces were as worn down and spent as his own.
None the less, Killmeister was determined to eliminate his rival. He figured that unlike with every other fallen Warlord, there would be nobody to take Durham’s place. None of his lieutenants possessed the charisma to pull together an army, or the skill to keep it running. Instead, Killmesiter was convinced that without their leader, Durham Red’s army would collapse, and he would be free to pick over its corpse. And then, once it was gone, he would be able to achieve what none of his predecessors could.
In mid-2199, Killmesiter began what he called his ‘end of the century violence campaign’, one aimed at ridding himself of his rival. Having consolidated and rebuilt his forces, he marched on Durham Red’s holdings, seeking to take down the rival warlord through sheer weight of numbers. This plan, while seemingly wasteful, actually played to his advantage. For some time, Durham had been bleeding off forces due to collapsing morale, as well as their leader’s own seeming malaise.
While Durham’s forces did fight back, as Killmeister had predicted, they were weak and disorganised and seemed to lack commitment. In many cases, they would simply retreat after suffering even light casualties, either pulling back to regroup with their fellows or simply melting away into the Detroit Wasteland. Killmesiter’s forces made massive strides into Durham’s territory, while suffering only relatively light casualties themselves.
Killmesiter advanced on Durham’s headquarters, demanding that the other warlord surrender to him. While he didn’t expect his rival to do such, his hope was that they would still be shaken by such a bold display. Instead, Durham emerged, wild-eyed and crazed, clearly pumped full of Psychobuff. After a brief, near incoherent challenge, he charged at Killmesiter’s formation, accompanied by a small cadre of his men. The result was almost anticlimactic, as Killmeister’s forces cut the warlord and his retinue down.
As expected, with Durham’s death his army collapsed. Killmesiter moved quickly to round up the survivors, pressing them into his own forces. He now stood alone, the last of the Warlords of Detroit.
My sister Glory threw up on the bus going to school
After the violence and crushing victory of the Durham Red campaign, many within Killmeister’s army expected him to make his next move immediately. Instead, he did the opposite, and spent the rest of 2199 and all of 2200 on consolidating his forces. The end of the century violence campaign had netted him a large body of troops and considerable holdings, but now he needed to determine their actual value.
Much of his newfound territory was seen as being worthless, and was abandoned so that he could focus on more lucrative goals. Likewise, his army contained many survivors of Durham’s army who were burned out, and thus had questions about their combat effectiveness. These were redistributed so that they would not drag down his force as a whole, while also breaking up any lingering opposition to his leadership.
By the end of this consolidation, Killmesiter’s army was smaller than Preah Khan’s had been at it height, the end result of years of attrition through constant, grinding warfare. Despite this, he also saw it as being powerful enough to fulfil his original goal, the one he had shared with every other Warlord; the conquest of the Detroit Wasteland. With no other Warlords remaining, the way was now clear for him to make his move.
After careful consideration, Killmesiter selected Grand Central as his target, feeling that it best suited his goals, while also being the easiest of the three targets. Chryslus Castle was heavily fortified and protected by a driven and motivated force that were determined that their city would never be threatened again. On paper, Park Lane was less defended than Grand Central, but Killmeister was concerned that if he took the community he then would be in a position where the other two would be able to flank and surround his holdings. Finally, his ego did not want to settle for the lesser target.
The first half of 2201 was spent on careful maneuvering as Killmeister positioned his forces. Then he began to become more aggressive, establishing a series of outposts around the city that served to cut off its trade routes. Having surrounded Grand Central on all sides, Killmesiter then tightened the noose, bringing his forces closer to the city and positioning themselves to strike. However, he did not simply go for an all-out, death or glory charge. Rather, he laid siege to the city, periodically striking at its defences while ensuring that nothing got out. His plan was to wear down the Grand Central Police Department’s numbers while sapping their morale, as well as the morale of the populace. Then, when they were at their weakest, he would strike and claim the city as his own.
His plan was costly, and wore down on his forces as well. Many felt discontented that they were fighting in among the ruins while the city was there for the taking, and Killmesiter had to put down those that questioned him on more than one occasion. None the less, his plan seemed to be working, with clear signs that the GCPD’s resolve was failing. Now confident that the time was right, in June 2201 he ordered an all-out assault on the city, aiming to crush its defenses in one fell swoop.
At first, all seemed to go as planned, with Killmesiter’s forces breaching the walls and pouring into the outer city. The GCPD resistance fell back, apparently outnumbered and out-gunned. Buoyed by this response, Killmesiter ordered his troops to advance on Grand Central itself. In doing such, they ran straight into a trap that the GCPD had laid for them. Rather than the last, desperate remnants that he’d expected, Killmesiter found himself surrounded by a well-armed force that were backed by civilian volunteers, and supported by shooters in the main building itself.
The front ranks if his force were quickly cut down, and the rest quickly descended into chaos. What had started as a well-planned assault quickly became a disorganised, panicky rout as the GCPD and their allies continued to pour on the fire. Force cohesion rapidly disintegrated as an every man for himself attitude took over and those that could escape, or at least thought they could, tried to escape.
Killmesiter was wounded by enemy fire and captured during the rout. Without him, his army quickly fell apart, dissolving into isolated raider gangs and going to ground. Its collapse ended a legacy begun nearly three decades ago with Preah Khan and his first invasion of the Detroit Wasteland. After only a brief respite, he was dragged before a show trial by the GCPD, who wasted no time in declaring his guilt. Killmesiter, the last of the warlords of Detroit, was hung on the 1st of July 2201.
Killmesiter was ambitious and driven, but not to the point of stupidity or hubris. The depravations of his upbringing in poverty gave him a hunger for power and wealth that would propel him forward and define his life. He held himself to no morals or scruples, rather seeing others as mere stepping stones to his own power. Despite this, he also was a canny planner and strategist; he would not simply throw men away for the sake of it, and did his best to conserve his resources and use them as best he could.
For all his skills as a planner, Killmesiter was poor at reading people. This weakness would cost him on numerous occasions, most notably when Jimmy Bones overthrew Preah Khan, something that Killmesiter had failed to see coming. Most of his interactions were clipped and buisnesslike, and he never formed any particularly deep or meaningful relationships. He also disliked ghouls, but this seemed to be born out more from Jimmy’s betrayal than any real biases.
Unlike some of the other Warlords, Killmesiter wanted to capture the settlements of the Detroit Wasteland with the minimum of damage. He saw them as a route to the wealth and power that he so craved, and wanted to rule his empire from luxury, instead of a blasted ruin. He tended to see their people as being soft and not willing to fight, a mistake that would ultimately cost him everything.
After escaping his improvised background Killmesiter rapidly filled out. While not particularly tall, he was muscular and powerfully built. He had rough features, including small brown eyes and black hair. However, he usually kept his head shaved and his face clean shaven. However, few people ever saw his face, given that he usually wore his signature skull mask. Unlike the other Warlords, he tended to hide his scars rather than wear them as badges of pride. Or, of course it could have been just the skull mask.
As a Warlord, Killmesiter had access to the resources of his entire army at his disposal, and rarely wanted for anything. He usually wore heavy scrap metal armour in order to protect himself, especially given that he often would lead his men from the front. While his weapon would vary depending on the circumstances, he often wielded a crossbow for reasons that he declined to explain. Maybe he just liked the twing-twang noises.
For much of his career, Killmesiter wore a skull mask that covered his face and head. It became his signature, and would rate as the third most feared item of apparel worn by a Warlord after Black Mary’s Power Armour and Bun-Bun’s fuzzy bunny head.
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