Dead... and Back is a survival horror Role Playing Game. The Anarchy Zones is its official setting - aliens, reanimates, and the ruins of 2055 America.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Mr. Williams, School Bus Driver

Aside from his parent (long deceased) Mr. Williams has not a single person that uses his first name. Whether it is a matter of professionalism  in front of the children, or unfamiliarity with teachers, or low rank compared to principles - no one refers to him by something other than surname or "bus driver".

Overweight, quiet, not the sharpest knife in the drawer, he does not seem like one who would outlast the first few hours of an undead uprising. However he is a man of hidden depths and is capable of great bravery for the purpose of protecting children. Mr. Williams is an excellent chef, collecting dozens of cookbooks and even keeping a Dewar flask of liquid nitrogen on hand for fancy molecular gastronomy creations. His creativity extends to model building as well, from ships in a bottle to remote control jets at 1:20 scale. Quite often, he does better than the actual mechanics at diagnosing problems with the school bus' turbocharged diesel engines.


Mr. ---- Williams
  • Strength  3
  • Wits  3
  • Technique  7
  • Quick  3
  • Close Combat  4
  • Ranged Combat  2

  • Animus  8
  • Deadening  6
  • Lucidity  6
  • Pack  10
  • Up-Rise  10
    • Repair: From tiny model engines to a school bus
    • Wood Working: His tall ships are not plastic kits
    • Cooking: If Julia Child has cooked it, so has Mr. Williams.
    • Driving: Certified driver with an impeccable record over twenty years


    Ralph Kramden of "The Honeymooners" would be a good start, though Mr. Williams is older, fatter, balder, and wears rather dated wire rim glasses. Even in his own life, he seems to be just a walk on extra of a generic older man in the background. Most people are so used to seeing him from a short time twice a day - and in a dark uniform hunched over a steering wheel at that - they wouldn't recognize him off duty in khakis and a red sweater. Often he seems like a low budget and elderly version of the human characters from "Mr. Rodger's Neighborhood".

    Mr. Williams would never handle a gun, and would strongly oppose allowing a child to be near one. On the other hand, he is quite adept at handling all sorts of sharp objects from hobby knives to meat saws for parting out cow halves ("You see sir, the meat is better and cheaper if you get it from the farm, and you need freshness for carpachio...") and chainsaws for ice sculptures. His garage is full of tools, electrical equipment for scale railroads, jet fuel, a Dewar flask of liquid nitrogen, a wood burning stove, and old "popular mechanics magazines". His aging car sits under a canvas fly on the driveway. (Likely a Buick of some description.)

    Mr. Williams will preface almost every statement with an apology - as if each time he speaks he is interrupting or acting out of place. Everyone is a sir or madam, maybe a Mister or Misses if the situation is very informal. Much of the time he doesn't even bother speaking to adults. To children he is more of a stern but soft-spoken authority figure. For everyone else, he is at best wallflower.

    As unassuming as Mr. Williams is, he takes his responsibility to keep children safe extremely seriously.

    Use in a Game
    Mr. Williams can provide valuable transportation, and possibly maintenance if coaxed. His house could make for a rather interesting base for those of the "McGuyver" persuasion. Although unlikely to add much to a debate or plan, he is nearly guaranteed to follow it to the letter - with one exception. He will not harm children, and would rather wrestle an abomination the the ground with his bare hands than allow it to harm a child. Its likely that a player's first encounter with him is a valiant attempt to use the bus to evacuate children or otherwise move them to a new home.

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