- "What's flashier than a crow?"
- ―Veronica Vandada on her crew's name
|The Crow Faces|
|Group type:||Raider band|
|Motto:||Let's get paid|
|Location(s):||Rapid City, Badlands Territory|
|Founded by:||Veronica Vandada|
Veronica Vandada was a teen when she founded the Crow Faces, named after the masks she had bought the month before. She originally planned on them being a one-time group for a robbery, but would be identified during it. Forced to flee town, she and the others headed towards the countryside. From there she would cement herself as leader of the group, and take them on several raids.
They would also skirmish with other bands during this time, managing to capture two assault rifles in one encounter. These the Crows would use to target a Rockers patrol, taking the mercenaries' equipment after they killed them. Now properly armed, they would spend the rest of the 2250s hitting caravans around BurnBridge before moving west.
Lead by a young and eager Veronica, the Crow Faces would hit dozens of caravans as they moved to Dupree in 2262. The move was caused by an assertion by the Mobridge Merchants Guild, as well as a desire to recruit new recruits besides from rival crews. From the ruins, they would be able to destroy and absorb several smaller crews, as well as a few scavengers.
As they expanded, however, they would see a downgrade in equipment quality, which Veronica took as a sign. Not willing to become a poorly armed mob, they would attack enough targets to make sure each raider was well equipped and even managed to find a chem brewer in one raid. With guns, chems, slaves and loot to spare, The Crow Faces quickly became one of the most powerful gangs in Dupree, and smaller crews soon started to pay them protection money.
They looked to be a serious threat as time went on, expanding slowly and stockpiling their wealth and supplies as if preparing for war. This would be averted by the unfortunate arrival in the town by Sparks Vandada and his gang. Intending to only pass through, Sparks' arrival and identification would cause Veronica to order her men out, thinking them a scouting party. The Crows came down hard on the intruders, incinerating them as they passed through a narrow alley.
After her scouts had failed to find any sign of a larger group, however, Veronica pulled her men back to their camp and waited for a siege. Her followers were skeptical, but knowing the Vandada tendency to kill relatives, they waited through most of 2266 before protesting much. Scouts were again sent out to placate the raiders, who again found no signs of a camp. Veronica still called for defensive positions, which chaffed many of the rank-and-file.
Frustrated at the lack of excitement or cash-flow, several groups broke off from the Crows, taking supplies as they left. This would finally break Veronica out of her paranoia as she raged at the traitors before leading those still loyal to her to battle. The Crow Faces would use every trick and weapon still in their arsenal to punish the traitors, even choosing white phosphorous to level one camp. They would eliminate all the traitors within a month, but had been reduced to twenty-eight souls altogether.
They had exhausted most of their remaining resources and attracted rivals in their war, so the Crows would again move, this time heading north to a rest stop on highway 65. From here they could pick off caravans traveling through the young RUSA, as well as avoid patrols that came looking. The group would recover some of its previous fortune here, buying anything they couldn't steal. They would stay until mid-2270, when the crew moved into Deadwood. Knowing Custer's views on raiders they hid their identity and hanged out in the seedier parts of town.
They would make their presence known in several locals however, most notably the slave market and Swift Cloud Johnston's Ghoul Cages. Their purchases at the former included Edward Taylor, who would later gain fame on his own. They stayed only for two weeks, moving west and establishing themselves in Wyoming for a time. They would elbow-out a camp among the tribals and monsters, and even recruit a few into their ranks while here.
Word would reach Veronica of another cousin in August of 2274, the courier shaking as he delivered the message. Veronica would rally her raiders, and the Crows would prepare for war. They stockpiled their loot and tribute for two weeks before setting out to Rapid City, passing up raids as they tried to beat the winter. They would just manage to make camp before a snowstorm covered the ruins. Some of the Crows would skirmish with the locals during this time, but the real fighting would occur the next spring.
Having saved their chems all winter, Veronica gave a passionate speech before leading her followers in Psycho usage and an attack on their enemies. For three days they fought, not only targeting the rival Vandada gang, but taking on the locals as well. After considerable casualties and loses the Crow Faces would be ended by a faulty landmine, Veronica and the survivors having been watching the lesson on how to disarm them. Their death would allow their slaves to escape and is indirectly responsible for the creation of Shiver.
The Crow Faces looked up to wealth, even more so than many other raiders or mercenaries. While others want it simply for what they can buy, Veronica and the other original Faces realized that visible shows of wealth impressed people. This is true both in the raider world, where they got dozens of members because of their vulgar displays, and in the normal world, where caravans and travelers gave in more easily to the well-equipped.