Even before the collapse, Santa Bella was not an easy place to live. Poverty, crime and a widely ignored drug epidemic held a constant grip on its residents and crushed the spirits of most who grew up there. Opportunity was limited and much of the population made a living working at or in connection to Angel Gate Harbor, the primary hub for international trade on the West Coast. For some this was enough, for many it was the only option, but the real hardship was yet to come.
It was just over two years ago that a quiet man arrived in Palmera with nothing but the clothes on his back. He had been on the move for a long time and it finally seemed like he had managed to lose those who pursued him. Sitting on the shore and looking off past the golden sunset he made a vow. He would never reveal who he was. He would never put anyone in that kind of danger again.
Slowly he settled into his new life in Palmera as ‘Noah’. Though always distant from others, his politeness was respected and he became an accepted member of the Palmera community. Self taught, he picked up the hobby of surfing and would spend nearly every day out on the waves. Even as the sun sank beneath the sea, locals would often see his familiar silhouette as he paddled out again and again until the night hid him from view. Surfing had become his meditation, a way to briefly forget a past he still feared would catch up with him one day. There were times when others nearly succeeded in getting him to open up, but each time he would catch himself and politely withdraw back into his isolation. And then came the collapse.
For a time Noah continued in his seclusion, but as the outsiders tore through the streets of Palmera and his friends began to die, he knew he couldn’t stand by. Locals had organized a resistance movement called the Dawn Patrol and it was on their darkest day, when they were on the cusp of defeat, that Noah emerged and took charge of the operation. But this was a Noah none had seen before.
Through aggressive and brutal guerrilla tactics Noah crushed the outsiders and drove them from the beaches within a matter of days. He turned an inevitable loss into a definitive victory for the Palmera community, but others weren’t sure what to make of this new side of Noah. The once quiet and humble surfer had revealed himself to be a skilled machine of war.
His reputation was a problem he’d have to worry about later, however. This victory had come at a great cost to his community and, worse still, he knew that by revealing part of his identity that he would eventually be located. Even the collapse would not keep the true enemy at bay forever and when they returned, he would make sure his people were ready.
Last updated January 01, 2020
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