September 4th, 2077
I did it. I signed the employment contract with Vault-Tec.I'll be going through some employee orientation meetings throughout the next three months.
I have to say, I'm questioning my decision. These people are really, well, I don't want to go too far, but "controlling" is perhaps the best word. Oh well. What's done is done, and we'll make it work.
You said you enjoyed my longer letter, so I thought I'd do one again, on oil, of course, because I'm just such a nutty environmentalist. Of course, soon you'll get to hear these lectures face-to-face, so know that I indulge you (alright, and myself) at the expense of poor proletarian inkpens everywhere. By writing these letters literally in their spilled blood, I prove my rights by dint of oppression to the capitalist class.
Right then. Levity aside...
You say that I worry too much. Honey, it's worse here than I let on. Not as bad as there, no, and it looks like it's getting better, but it's slow. And I try not to worry. But it's hard. It's hard not to worry, sometimes.
I went down to the library and looked up some things on oil, including on the 'nets. I still would really like to get a personal computer. Maybe some Christmas. *hint*. Anyway, it turns out that oil is used to make all sorts of things, such as sulfuric acid - which is used in industry AND to create fertilizer (helps explain why our farms are so much less productive, eh?) - and other industrial chemicals. Oh, and plastics, as we all know. And wax (did you know that wax was used to package frozen food? I had no idea). Asphalt - so we're having to replace more and more of our roads with concrete. And all sorts of various other chemicals - benzene, toulene, stuff like that. Which are used to make even more chemicals.
You. Would. Not. Believe. how much stuff oil is used in. It's used to make paraffin wax, which is used to lubricate bullets, preserve cheese, stabilize high explosives and propel solid rockets, in printer ink, and in neutron radiation shielding. And that's just paraffin wax. Lack of oil is what is keeping us from developing electronics at any great rate, as we need it for the necessary plastics, though we are developing work-arounds. Oil is used to - well, mostly was - make cloth like nylon and elastic and polyester and etc. And you would not believe how many things nylon was used for alone. Well, maybe you would.
I was 5 or 6 when Project Safehouse - the vaults - were started. I don't really remember that. I do remember when, when I was twelve, how everything...just...stopped. There was no gas, for anyone, anywhere. And then the news from the Middle East - after all the religious violence, all the western meddling, after Europe decided to take the oil by force - that it turned out to be all gone. They'd pumped out the very last of it to fuel their war machines, or to sell to China and Russia and Australia for Uranium for their atomics. And, Europe, used the oil they captured for the same things, according to the archived newspapers at the library.
And, of course, I was eighteen when China invaded Alaska. Just getting out of high school, what passed for it. We were still battling inflation and deflation, with barely enough oil to keep bare transportation and essential services going, with the government frantically selling junk bonds to finance vaults and attempting to rapidly build electric mass transit. I know you remember, but it was...more immediate out in California, I guess. Or maybe that's unfair. But I remember them working on the Vaults. I remember that winter, the blackouts.
And then, of course, I went to college, which led to meeting guess who?
Despite all that oil is necessary for, I still recall my feeling of disbelief when I heard that Anchorage had fallen to a surprise attack. And after all the time and money that had been spent on fortifications and preparations. And the sheer arrogance of it, the total greed. The Chinese learned nothing from Europe and the Middle East, and their justifications resemble nothing more than those of Japan over one hundred years ago. What did they expect to happen? Or were they just that desperate? I thought we were desperate, how much worse must it be under Communism?
Well, this will be my last letter, I think. With you heading home soon, any more would probably cross paths with you. Be safe, and I'll see you at Boston Airport.