[[[ SPOILER WARNING ]]]
I stayed up until 4 am playing Fallout last night because I started getting into the endgame quests. I’m reaching the end of the railroad quests, and I’m also doing the Institute quests, and the two were playing against one another. While having an imaginary conversation with Deacon (my new BFF), I also came to the realization that if I allow the brotherhood to turn hostile, a lot of innocent minutemen and railroaders (both human and synth) will have to die in order to beat them back.
“They’re no match for such a superior fighting force. Instead, the most efficient way to stop the threat was to infiltrate the brotherhood itself under the guise of an initiate, gain audience with Elder Maxson, and assassinate him, cutting the head off the snake before it could even uncoil.
I did this by pretending to befriend Paladin Danse and making my way onto the Prydwen. I stole the most powerful suit of power armor I could find, met Elder Maxson on the fore-deck of his airship, looked him in the eye, and betrayed him, shooting him in the face without warning. I fought my way off of the Prydwen tooth and nail, killing every last brotherhood initiate, scribe, and knight, leaving only a single cat and a single child alive. When I returned to Hangman’s alley (the outpost at which all of my companions are stationed), Paladin Danse awaited me, and we immediately set to battle. It was a fierce battle, reducing much of Hangman’s alley to rubble, but in the end, as he fell to his knees and breathed his last, he said, “Ad Victorium, brother…” To Victory. I know, somewhere deep inside, he understood my motives, but was forced to die for the brotherhood to satisfy his own debt of honor.
I then betrayed my son – my own blood, working behind his back and organizing the escape of his synth workers (slaves) while lying to his face and eventually accepting from him the leadership role of the institute. I used this power to then destroy it from within.
These dual betrayals were necessary to reduce the cost of life among those less equipped to face it – my commonwealth settlers. I now wear Elder Maxson’s coat along with a battered level 3 synth helmet to remind me daily of my dual betrayals, and as a monument to what was necessary to bring peace to my people (it also makes me look a little like Bane). I hope that through sacrificing my own honor I can bring to my people what was once stolen so savagely from me when the institute kidnapped my son and murdered my wife – life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness – words written by Thomas Jefferson, the man after which my custom .308 assault rifle is symbolically named.
I do this because, at my core, deeper than fatherhood and stronger than my own desire for self-righteousness, I am but one thing, and one thing forever – I am a Minuteman.”
The dwellers of Hangman’s Alley have fallen silent as I speak, stopping in the midst of cleaning and repairing in the wake of my battle with Danse. Nearby, Preston Garvey leans against a wall and silently wipes a single tear from his dusty cheek. He removes the Minuteman General’s hat I gave him after promoting him and holds it to his chest. He approaches me with reverence.
“General… sir,” he says, “I’ve heard news of another settlement that needs our help.”