|Location:||West of the Corpse, Corpse Coast, Texas|
|Disestablishment:||Oct 23, 2077/|
|Factions:||Annaville, Reds (sometimes)|
|Notable events:||The 80's Liquor Boom, Robert Barter's "Election", Robstown Massacre|
|Current status:||Empty ghost-town, Red safe-house|
Robstown, Texas is a ghost-town suburb of Corpus Christi (or post-War, the Corpse) just a few miles west of the city. In its hay-day post-War Robstown was a safe trade post on the way to the Corpse, and at its peak, had a rough permanent population of 150, and dozens of drifters. This was until the town was pillaged, burned, and destroyed in 2266 by the Annaville Reds.
Named after Robert Driscoll, Robstown was founded as a suburban residential area outside of Corpus Christi in 1906. Robert worked with his brother Jeremiah after the American Civil War to develop Texas, particularly around Corpus Christi. Their development boomed the city's workforce as Nueces County doubled its population from 10,500 in 1900 to 22,000 by 1910. During the Cold War many families bought home fallout shelters, especially after the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1961--however, these would not be used for over a hundred years.
At the beginning of the Resource Wars McCarthyism flared up. The Us invaded Mexico. Texas's oil fields dried up. by 2067, after the invasion of Alaska in 2066, records show nearly the whole town had home shelters or registered for vaults. This was touchy subject before the war and no would admit to owning a shelter.
The Resource Wars continued into the seventies the town struggled economically--some families were laid-off and had to move or file bankruptcy. Any pocket of oil found was seized by the military. The blowback of invading Mexico also economically hurt Robstown. According to the 2070 census, Nueces County had a population of just over 550,000 people; Robstown itself had some 60,000, which was considerably lower than twenty years ago.
The Great War
In the immediate aftermath of the apocalypse, costal winds quickly draped Robstown in fallout, covering every home and structure in inches of dust and gamma rays. Nearly everyone above ground died in the following days due to radiation poisoning. A small unit of the Texas National Guard rolled into town shortly after which uplifted the survivors. However, they were only looking for volunteers to aid the evacuation of "the Corpse." Policemen, reservists, and volunteers boarded the military trucks and headed downtown, very few returned.
After this, the survivors grew angry and disheartened; chaos was barely avoided. The old sheriff and his loyal deputies initially kept peace. Towards the end of October the dust settled and families left their fallout shelters to assess the damage, the sight was unimaginable; crops, homes, families, and livestock all lay dead in the streets, frozen in time. Winter set in.
Refugees started visiting in early November, at first escorted by the military (barely). The town, still believing in government, helped as best they could, thinking the world would return to normal in a few months. Their attitude shifted once they saw ghouls for the first time and military escorts ended. Each day more refugees came; the sheriff's office seized the hospital and supermarket to prevent looting and turned away the crowds. Over several days violent incidences occurred and the police (aided by a unified town) turned away the refugees. Several homes and the police HQ was destroyed in the events. Looting and fighting made it all possible for what happened next. The following "nuclear" winter months were very dangerous.
The Top Three Conflict
As soon as the refugee conflict ended, the townsfolk turned on each other. By 2078, despite deputy intervention, gangs rose to power and the conflict between the coined "Top Three" began.
The weakest of the three, the Sheriff's Department reestablished their HQ in the hospital after the refugees burned the sheriff's office. They kept order in parts of the town and helped whoever they could. The officers' families moved into or near the hospital along with any AWOL National Guardsmen and consisted of roughly 30 men and another 30 women and children.
The most powerful of the Top Three, called the Entente by outsiders, consisted of a trifecta of locally powerful "gangs" loosely aligned on the west side of N 1st Street. Made up of mostly young men, the gangs were controlled by John Williams Senior, a father of four who lost one son, a National Guardsmen, in the Corpse reclamation. Including all three gangs, they had some 80 men at their peak- and over a hundred people lived in their neighborhoods.
The third clan were the Survivalists. Considered apocalyptic enthusiasts by the Entente, the Survivalists were originally a group of nine members who formed a pack before the war to survive together on one of the member's farm outside of town. Engulfing the southeast edge of town many others on the east side--especially those who had recently left their shelters--prompted to join and eventually formed a coalition. These scattered woodsmen had roughly forty hunters, survivalists, and gun enthusiasts ready to fight.
The Top Thee politically and violently battled for weeks after a sparking event involving the police in January 2078. The smaller gangs fell and the town was nearly destroyed by the infighting. Ultimately, a cease-fire occurred. John Williams Sr. and the Entente conquered Robstown and he did whatever was necessary for the remaining neighborhoods to survive.
John Williams Senior (2078-2125)
Four-hundred survivors followed John, almost half the town. John has his group scavenge and fortify his areas of town. But there simply was not enough supplies. John would do anything to save his group, and his strong leadership gave them hope. After a year of struggling, John had his group steal and loot the other survivors in Robstown. Over the years, as John's group killed neighbors for supplies, those remaining outside the group fled.
The new "Johnstown," was given a raider's reputation and trading stopped as the 22nd century approached. Unfortunately, with a lack of trade raiding became far more common, and after the Great Clan collapsed in 2090, Johnstown preyed on the Leopards in Annaville. The few hundred survivors in Annaville were blindsided by the raids starting in 2090. This would begin the long hatred of the two towns. By 2125, the tides changed and Johnstown went abandoned after John Williams died due to internal conflict and retaliation from Annaville.
The town would remain empty for another sixty years. Only the occasional prospector, criminal, or drifter would hang out or pick over the town. The Reds tried using Robstown as an outpost to launch raids further south, but lack of logistics and leadership prevented this.
80's Liquor Boom (2180's)
In 2181, a Texan family of moonshiners moved into a bar on Main Street after killing off the snakes. The family attracted other businesses and soon Main Street had some shops that directed customers to each other. This friendly and economic environment caused a resettlement in Robstown over the decade. Crime and supply scarcity became problems as more drifters strolled through to trade. Some townsfolk started farms and law services but in the wasteland, these mostly failed.
Robert Barter (2260-2266)
Barter visited Robstown in 2260 wanting to make major caps fixing their problems. He squatted in a building behind Main Street. Barter then changed his name to "Robert" after seeing it on the town watertower. Robert tried to impress the business leaders, so he could get an audience, but he proved only to be a nuisance. So Barter got bolder.
He infamously killed a gang of troublemakers. They were 17 and a pain-in-the-ass with their vandalism and thievery so Barter shot them dead on Main Street in front of everyone. He finally won over the town by talking the father of one of the boys out of shooting him. Rob introduced himself to everyone as Robert Barter and insisted the town was named after him, not vice versa. Over the next few years Robert ruled the town with a tariff system and a handful of goons.
He set up the dual economic system of endo and exo-currencies, 5.56mm rounds were used internally to trade with other shops or farmers in town while bottle tops were used to trade with foreigners, with a fair exchange rate. By 23rd century Annaville forgot their grudge but a government in Robstown brought back the Reds' attention.
After the first few attacks Robert bought firearms, security, and defenses. He sunk tens of thousands of caps on these defenses and they kept the town safe, but the constant import of captured slaves meant the Reds would remain a threat. The northern edge of Robstown became a warzone: littered with holes and barricades. This stalemate continued until 2266 when Harland Ross lead a surprise raid on Annaville.
Robstown Massacre (2266)
The roaring hay-day of Robstown had long passed by 2266, the Red raids escalated, and trade was down. Robert owed so many caps to his mercs that the tariffs on businesses crushed the economy further. Robert had been making plans to finally resolve the Annaville issue, the only problem is he did not have a fool to lead his suicide team in "Phase 1" of the plan. That was until Harland Ross walked through the door inquiring about the Corpse and The Lexxx. Harland had several guns and a worn duster and cowboy hat, he was a professional. Robert saw his opportunity and convinced Harland to lead this attack team and Robert didn't even need to pay him. Ross would lead this team to Annaville, die along the way, and still trigger Barter's plan: Win-win.
Ross would lead, before dawn, in two days, a well armed team with explosives and head to Annaville and dump the grenades and bombs in the center of their capital. Robert's plans was to weaken and fluster the terrorists, they would counter-attack to which Robert would be ready, as he had built up an arsenal over the past few months, and then Robert would lead his men to counter-attack the counter-attack and finally crush the Annaville Reds.
The time went and Ross left with six others, a retard named Dumb-dumb, two Flour Bluff Blues, and four other local hired guns, to go stir the hornets nest. Now was the time for Robert to ready himself, he gathered his men in the northern buildings, he got extra ammo moved and set up spaced out the handful of automatic weapons he had. Mines and spikes were planted in the Killzone north of town, Robert knew he had about an hour before the Reds attacked. Robert used his final minutes to grab his secret weapon, his personal rocket launcher which he did not know how to use. After some questioning he found a suitable merc to use it effectively, but only after Robert's signal.
Luckily, and unluckily, Harland returned with all his men and were sprinting right into the minefield. Robert waved and yelled but they pressed on, dodging and prancing about in order to dodge the mines. Dumb-dumb wasn't quite fast enough and landed on mine which blew his leg off and knocked him on his butt. He held his stump, ignorant of why it happened, and cried until he bled out some minutes later. Five minutes passed in peace, but then, as the sunrise just finished, the Reds arrived in force with over forty slaves and sixty armed Reds. They used their traditional attack method, slaves in front, Reds in the back. They came exactly as planned. Robert ordered the men to fire, the minefield was for the Reds, not their slaves. The slaves soaked up the bullets rather quickly, but the Reds were well organized this time. They provided covering fire and spread around instead of advancing recklessly.
As the Reds started to encroach they finally activated some mines which halted their advance. Time flew in as men on both sides took shots and killed each other. Bullets whizzed everywhere, lots of men had lost eyes, fingers, hands, or punctured organs in the blink of an eye. Grenades were thrown and collapsed century old buildings. By 8'o'clock the northern part of town was engulfed in the firefight. Both sides were bogged down in all the gunfire, despite losses though the Reds did manage to get on both flanks of the frontline, but they gained little ground.
Being surrounded made Robert too uncomfortable and decided to bring out the secret weapon. The rocket launcher had some ten rockets to fire, the rocketman used them all in under five minutes but they did more harm then good. The force ejected out the rear broke one merc's neck and one of the rockets brought down one of the buildings in town. It was soon after this that the Reds, running low on ammo, bum rushed the flanks and fought CQC in building to building. It took no time for the remaining mercs to flee or be captured. Every person left in Robstown was taken a slave and the place was pillaged and burned.
Currently, Robstown lies an abandoned ruin. The Reds have a large outpost here on the north side but it is only inhabited 50% of the time. The Reds have also decorated the town to their liking with violent graffiti and hanging skeletons of the townspeople from lampposts. Snakes have moved into the southern part of town over the years. Travelers are advised, when leaving the Corpse, to follow Route 44 to Route 77 and head south using back roads to get westward, avoiding Robstown.
When Robstown had government, it was under Robert's law. The town had a simple statute, no murder, thievery, rape, arson, malicious wounding, enslaving, buying or selling slaves in town (but transporting is legal), selling harmful chems (including booze) without a medical or selling license handed out by Robert himself, and just generally causing trouble.
The town's laws would have been enforced by a goon squad of about twenty men, although if Barter needed a posse most the town would volunteer. The punishment for violating these laws would normally result in a beating and being chased out of town. Murderers would normally be chased by a posse (usually to the Corpse), dragged back naked, and hanged. This exact action gave the town a locally legendary sense of safe business and justice, although the reasons were honestly just economical. In some rare cases, perpetrators had been sold to the Annaville Reds; this action is not popular however and has rarely occurred under the strict order of Barter.
Robstown always had a strong agricultural based economy like the historic south, which gathered business, but also promoted raiding from the north. With its mutated cabbage, cotton, and corn, the small time farmers traded with roaming caravans headed towards the Corpse. These crops were also used in distilling liquor, which boosted crime, trade, and population greatly. As traders would roll through this safe-zone on the way to the Corpse, they would often stop by one of the many liquor stores or bars and exchange goods. These traders also enjoyed the fresh crops they could purchase at the local bazaar. Receiving goods like guns, medicine, brahmin, and other merchandise coddled the town's small economy into a greater one, although no one would consider Robstown a hub of any kind.
Being one-hundred-twenty miles away from the border, pesos weren't commonly found here but are accepted. The official currency of the town is 5.56mm NATO rounds as they were a very common, military grade, reliable, "all-American" bullet that the townsfolk could use to purchase things or defend themselves with. Bottle caps were a common substitute though, as they did tend to flood in from Corpse traders. An exchange rate wasn't really used in Robstown as people used the caps/pesos and 5.56mm as two different, incompatible currencies; the 5.56mm was used locally with other residents in town while the caps and pesos were used to deal with outsiders. This dual system did work but did have some small defects, like people couldn't use 5.56mm to buy more 5.56mm and had to rely on outside traders to bring in more rounds and use their caps to purchase them.
Before the Reds brutally enslaved the town, Robstown had a rather deep Texan culture. But, the culture of Robstown never recovered after the Great War. Xenophobia took hold and limited Mexican influence from the south and urbanization from the Corpse. The population stayed uneducated so almost all the books in the town were burned for survival. The residents were also not very traveled, as they were too busy with their farms or managing their liquor stores.
Musically, Robstown thrived from the Great War. With so much liquor about, starting in the 2180's, bottles became common instruments and the term "jug band" took up a literal meaning in Robstown. In fact, one such band became well known and even toured along Corpse Coast and Hill Country. As lovely as the constant stream of soulful music is, lyrically, the town has not a lick of talent. The backwoods people sing about what they know, which consists of shooting, drinking, and growing crops. The high illiteracy rate also does not help here, in fact, the 4 Quarts Quartet only got its name after a trading called them a quartet, to which initially the group thought it was an insult.
In the time before the Great War, Christianity was the leading religion in Robstown, specially Methodists and Baptists churches, although Islam, Judaism, Atheism, and other beliefs were practiced and welcomed. Following the Great War- people took two turns when it came to religion, turning away from it or spiritually absorbing into it. Many believers of God turned away from him while others threw themselves at his mercy. Through the generations this has continued, households that chose to keep their religion still claim they are religious, although God knows no one could quote scripture. Atheism had taken a turn for the majority by the 23rd century, mostly through ignorance and negligence to pass religion word of mouth. When Robert took over he placed no limitations on religion, as long they didn't break any laws (he was mainly concerned about religious speakeasies over cultic sacrifices).
The suburb lies just a few miles west of downtown Corpus Christi and is only five miles south of Annaville.
- John William's name comes from the authors great-grandfather
- The leadership and emotional/spiritual role by John William's is inspired by The Walking Dead's (comic) character: The Governor and (controversially) by James Warren Jones: the man behind the Jonestown massacre
- The relationship between Robstown and Annaville is inspired the relationship between Jericho and New Bern in the 2006 show, Jericho