Tues Mar 6 2012

Tues Mar 6 2072

Yeah. 1.6 million cubic hectares is a lot of water. It's a lot of pressure on a dam, and Monticello Dam is no exemption. A hundred and twenty years old, the dam has been in continuous use during that time. No earthquake has knocked it down, no environmental study has shut it down, the attempt by the Tir Ghosts in the war to blow it failed. She stands strong and tall at the mouth of lake Berryessa, feeding her water to the agricultural lands of the valley all year long, her hydro electricity feeding the city of San Francisco, rain or shine.

Putah creek flows from Lake Berryessa, cold and frigid, drawn off the bottom of the lake. It flows down the canyon, to the of Winters. An agri-town, Winters has grown extensively since the awakening. Home to farmers, laborers and a Mitsuhama heavy equipment factory, it's not a small town at 45,000 people. Seated in the flood plain of Putah Creek, it's fertile land and the people have packed into it. Ten miles beyond, on that same floodplain, sits the city of Davis. 200,000 people, a university and major air force base, it's a quarter million people and hundreds of thousands of acres of farmland that sit down stream from Monticello dam.

You can tell where this is going, can't you?

GoldRush. It's not just a period of California History. It's a visceral name that's floated up from the chaos of California in the last few years. A small time partisan band that operated in Sacramento for a few years, it went silent about three years after the invasion. The Japanese attributed it to a near complete evisceration of it's leadership, utilizing the standard tactics you use anywhere - find someone and turn them - either by paying them enough or threatening the things they care about. In a series of lightening raids in 2065, GoldRush was brought to its knees. But since 2070, GoldRush has been resurgent. A few small raids in Auburn, then a stronger attack on a military convoy near Modesto, then sniper attacks in Tracy that killed the families of several executives of KamiAgri, a Japanese agricorp.

GoldRush got smart, it seems. Never sticking around after making a strike. Fading away as quickly as they hit. Military precision, the Japanese say. UCAS SeALs, some whisper. More likely, GoldRush is receiving support from the CalFree military, such as it was. The only problem with that, is GoldRush, despite being a 'terrorist' organization is just three times as effective as the Cal Guard. Which is pretty damn sad.

Travis Air Force Base is just outside the town of Fairfield, about midway between San Francisco and Sacramento. It used to be the primary US B-52 base. That means, it had some very… very… very large aircraft that carried very… very… very large bombs. A cold war relic, it was still the largest air force base in California and never shut down. The Cal Guard assumed it when the UCAS pulled out, and when the Japanese rolled through, they captured most of California's meager bomber fleet on the ground. A few aging B-52s, a pair of CFSB-34's. They sat moldering in their hangars for years - preserved in climate controlled environments. Fueled. Maintained. Ready to go. But with no use to the Japanese.

GoldRush has a use. Find out tomorrow what that use is.

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