Danse Macabre is a raider tribe cum slaver nation straddling either side of the mighty Mississippi River thanks to its control of the Caruthersville Bridge. It is jointly ruled by Romeo Macabre and his First Bitch Cherry Bomb.
HistoryThe tribe was originally formed when "Iron-Cock Macabre" united two disparate gangs of raiders together by defeating the other gang's leader in a fist fight to the death. Danse Macabre proved to be a persistent nuisance to caravans and travelers throughout eastern Missouri. Eventually an alliance with a third gang gave ol' Iron-Cock a case of serious ambition. He knew that if he could conquer the settlements in the ruins of Caruthersville and Dyersburg (across the river in Tennessee) his gang would command the crumbling Pre-War bridge crossing the river, allowing them to charge a toll over all traffic that hoped to cross. The towns were defended by little more than a shared Sheriff and a small posse, and they proved unable to stand against three combined gangs of hardened raiders. The transition from a nomadic lifestyle to a settled one proved to be a truly life-changing experience for Iron-Cock's teenage son and heir apparent, Romeo. Drawn to the local schoolteacher's daughter Sherri, Romeo began attending classes where he learned to read & write, among other things. Outside of classes, Romeo taught Sherri the finer points of raider lifestyle, including how to hold her liquor, use a gun, and fight with her fists. The two eventually got married, or the raider equivalent of that institution and Sherri changed her name to Cherry Bomb.
While combing through the abandoned Dryersburg High School, Romeo and Cherry found boxes of old educational materials, including punch cards for standardized tests and job placement questionnaires. Romeo was inspired by the find, and with Cherry's help he devised a method of using these tools to refine the tribe's basic slave taking enterprise. With his father's permission, Romeo and Cherry began to implement their procedures. Captives would be taken to the school and separated by literacy. Those who could read would take a series of exams on a terminal, while those who couldn't would be given a verbal test. The captives work assignments were determined by test results, those who were considered useless to the tribe's immediate needs could be sold off (or used for target practice, or fed to the dogs, whatever). Just as Romeo and Cherry had gotten their system in working order, Iron-Cock was killed by an itinerant hero while on a raid, thrusting the duo into the leadership over the tribe.
- Cherry Bomb: "Slaver Queen of the Mississippi" and "First Bitch" of the Danse, co-leader.
- Doc Sledge: "Voice of the Danse", radio operator for 89.1 FM "The Danse", secret agent of Aldrich Whitney.
- Freakshow: "Human Snare", former slave, leads raids to capture new slaves.
- Needles: "Skin Talker", tattoo artist.
Iron-Cock Macabre: "Master of Disaster", "High Fucklord", and "Chief Executions Officer". Founder of the Danse Macabre, deceased.
- Romeo Macabre: "Golden God of the Mississippi" and "First Bastard" of the Danse, co-leader.