- "We just want to live and be left alone. Is that so hard?"
- ―A Deschutes resident about town's attitude
A post-War settlement built on the Deschutes River, Deschutes was originally just a just a small farming community made up of a few homesteads. That was before the town was devastated by tribal and Badlander raids. Now, the town has been greatly reduced in population and has been forced to seek protection from the FNA.
Deschutes was founded in 2252 by a group of enterprising young homesteaders looking to strike out on their own. The site of the town was chosen specifically out of tribal land. Named after the river it lay by, Deschutes started out simply as a community of individual homesteads connected by their owners' friendship and determination. They may have just been farmers, but they worked hard and protected their land.
In the next decade, Deschutes grew into more of a town, most notably gaining a general store which would become the economic heart of the community. The town's farming economy was supplemented by caravans going north and as a result grew. By 2265, the town had grown to one hundred people.
By the time, the people of Deschutes were increasingly hearing of NCR encroachment into southern Oregon, the appearances of Badlanders in Cascadia, and the growing hostility among Oregon tribals. All this news alarmed many of the townspeople, who did not want a war on their doorstep. Some took sides but most people in Deschutes simply wanted to stay out of any war, unlike many other homesteader communities in Cascadia. That was the state the town was in when the War of the Northwestern Alliance began.
The initial fighting of the war avoided Deschutes, to most everyone's relief. However, some of the younger male residents of the town, supporting the Northwestern Alliance and frustrated with the boredom of farming life, formed a volunteer militia in 2268 and left Deschutes to fight. The town did not endorse this and timidly avoided telling anyone about this, hoping to avoid conflict.
Conflict came to them however in mid-2268 when a squad of NCR troopers came stumbling into town, a patrol originally from Grant's Pass that had fled north from a much larger force of Oregon tribals. The people of Deschutes, terrified of the relatively benign men, complied with the troopers' request for food, shelter, and water before heading back south. That was their fatal mistake.
The NCR troopers left the next day after thanking the homesteaders for their generosity. Not three hours later, almost one hundred tribals descended upon Deschutes with torches and weapons in hand. The NCR troopers' heads were born aloft on poles among the tribal horde. The tribals had been tracking the troopers, had seen them enter Deschutes, and wanted to send a clear message: collaboration equaled death. That day more than half of Deschutes was killed before the tribals' bloodlust was satisfied, and they left the town burned and bloodied.
Some survivors left Deschutes immediately after the massacre, seeing the town as unsafe. The ones that stayed behind continued farming and made sure to tell their story to every passing caravan, wanting everyone to know.
Later in the war, the shrinking town of Deschutes came under the attention of a group of Badanders from the nearby Twin Pines Pack. The Badlanders forced the remaining townspeople to pay tribute to them or face annihilation. This made more people leave but some stubbornly remained, even as things became tight.
In 2270, the boys who had gone off to war two years before came back to Deschutes to find a quiet frightened town under the thumb of abusive Badlander overlords. They would not stand for this and soon formed their own militia to force the Badlanders to go away. However, that proved not be enough, and the town reluctantly decided to reach out to the FNA for help. Colonel Mahers arrived with a sizable force of FNA troopers to secure the town from Badlander aggression. He also officially incorporated Deschutes' tiny militia into the FNA and flew the flag above the town. Seeing this, the Badlanders decided the fight (and antagonizing the FNA) was not worth it and left the area.
Since 2270, Deschutes has remained secure with the FNA's protection, but its population has stagnated, and few of the townspeople that left have returned. Luckily, it is too far out to be consistently "taxed" by the FNA and so does not feel that drain of money. The small town militia, FNA pretty much in name only, still protect the town while scratching out a life farming as well. Their days of youthful desire for the glory of war are over as they have seen the results of war wrought upon Deschutes.
Deschutes has no mayor or real town government beyond the occasional meeting among homesteaders. The FNA officially "control" the town, but this is mostly for the benefit of protection with the erratic collection of "taxes". The FNA militia in Deschutes are almost all natives and mostly think of themselves as a town militia, not as a part of the larger FNA.
Most people in Deschutes are subsistence farmers, so the town's economy is firmly agriculture based. The general store and the caravans provide another small source of income but have grown smaller in significance over the years.
Deshutes is less of a town and more of a community made up of a collection of homesteads near one another. The general store is the central part of town and the town's only dirt road runs to there. Near the store is a brahmin pen, a bar, and a stockade for the town to retreat into if necessary.
The people of Deschutes are a determined, stubborn bunch. They and their parents built the town from the ground up, and they are not going to let anyone take that from them, tribals or Badlanders.
The residents' survivalist ancestors influenced the town greatly, and the people of Deshcutes are hardy, able to live off the land if they have a bad farming season. They are naturally distrustful of authority, particularly of groups claiming "supreme authority". They also are mostly ambivalent politically, preferring to just get by without angering anybody. The townspeople will fight if necessary however and do not take slights lightly.
Deschutes in located on the shores of the southern part of its namesake, the Deschutes River. It is located in historical Deschutes County as well.
Deschutes was largely neutral in the Oregon Brushfire Wars but threw their lot in with the FNA (and obstinately NCR) for protection from both sides' marauding forces. The town regards the FNA as allies of convenience, and many in town have sympathies with their enemies.
However, the townspeople see the FNA as the more practical choice, seeing as the FNA is a large group that can come to the aid of the town rather quickly, as well as supply the town militia. The townspeople also enjoy the benefits of their protection with few of the FNA's often unattractive features, such as "taxes" and factionalism. The FNA militia in Deschutes are natives and only loosely connected to the rest of the group. The townspeople hold the NCR in little regard but do not feel the need to fight them like most homesteaders.
The townspeople harbor a seething hate for Badlanders and tribals, bred from their experiences in the war. They will kill either on sight, unless under FNA protection.
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