He wouldn’t leave us alone.
My two melee specialists, Lumi and Prissy, have been getting along rather well. Here they are merrily chatting away as they dismantle a small mech cluster that landed in our backyard.
Prissy once had a boyfriend. In our first year a small group of vagabonds sought shelter in our settlement for a season and she hit it off with one of them, a gentleman called Grub. I tried to give them a shared bedroom, but Grub was apparently part of some weird ideoligion that prohibited sleeping together before marriage. I considered trying to recruit him and seeing what would happen as this was the settlement’s first romance, but at 50 years old and with not a single useful skill he was just not going to be worth the bother. The vagabonds eventually left and Grub left with them. Prissy didn’t seem to mind, but he was still considered her “lover” in her social stats, despite them never having shared a bed
About a year went by and I’d pretty much forgotten about all this, when a quest notification popped up. Grub had been captured by pirates and was being held prisoner in a nearby location. I could send a caravan out to rescue him and he would join our settlement. If I didn’t save him I’d probably never see him again, the game informed me. I let the quest expire. No sense in risking life and limb just to get another frankly rather useless mouth to feed. Prissy still didn’t seem to mind.
Some time later a caravan from the friendly outlander faction Jacoberium passed by. The game notified me that one of the caravan guards had a relationship with one of my pawns.
Grub: Lover of colonist Prissy.
Well that’s nice, he’d escaped the pirates and found a good job with a trading outfit. That would make for a nice happy ending to his story. The caravan stayed for a day. Prissy didn’t even bother to come out of her doctor’s office to say hello.
One day a pirate raid arrived.
Grub was back, again, and he had joined the pirates. The pirates that had killed my dogs earlier in the year. They walked right into my main defences and were massacred. Only five of them managed to escape when they broke and ran away. Guess who was among them.
“Grub and Tony talked deeply about the relationship between love and culture shock”.
Yeah, I guess it is rather confusing when you come to murder the one you love and try to burn her house down, Grub. You prick. But surely he’d gotten the hint by now, running away with his tail between his legs?
Half a year later, the pirates were back. They started setting up mortars to shell my base. Grub was there. Of course he was. He was a “mercenary sniper” now, having moved up through the ranks. I took to the field to meet them, wiping out their mortar positions before they could even finish constructing them. The enemies were all snipers - dangerous at range but not much use in close quarters as Lumi bore down on them with her warhammer and Charissa used her psypowers to make anyone trying to take a shot projectile vomit.
They broke and ran. Grub was still unharmed and heading for the exit. I decided it was time to end this. I would capture or kill him. Prissy wasn’t at this battle; she was in her biosculpting pod getting age-reversal treatment. Would she even know if he died?
In hindsight, sending my ultra-geared brawler to hit him with her warhammer meant a capture wasn’t likely.
Prissy knew. I guess someone told her. She had a mood debuff, but only for a couple of days. The Grub problem was dealt with.
Then Prissy started fighting with Lumi a lot. Insults. Several fist fights. I didn’t understand why, they’d always been friendly. I checked the social stats.
Oh. Of course the game keeps track of that.