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|The following is based on Van Buren and has not been confirmed by canon sources.|
Though some people think she is insane, the genetic knowledge she turned into a religion is actually helping the wasteland. She lives in the American southwest, in a place called Ouroboros. The Daughters of Hecate are her prime servants, spreading Hecate's will to all the tribes. The Vipers, raider exiles from the West, have become Hecate's fanatical army, and will crush anyone who challenges her. The other tribes fear Hecate's power, and rightly so.
The Twisted Hair tribe was one of the most domineering tribes in the wasteland. They regularly raided their neighbors for food, supplies, and slaves. They were merciless in their efforts and the other tribes began to fear even the mention of their name.
It was during the reign of the Twisted Hairs that Caesar's Legion rose to power. The Legion taught the tribes to fight back, and the Twisted Hairs were soon driven from their lands. Weakened and on the retreat, the Twisted Hairs were then set upon by the Legion and destroyed. No one was spared, although one woman did manage to escape. She later became the supposed goddess known today.
She wandered the desert passing from tribe to tribe trying to find someone who would take her in and give her a home. The tribes spurned her and turned her away. They told her that she was cursed, that the Legion had marked her, and that she would bring death to any who provided her help. Consumed with anger and hatred she fled back into the desert from which she came. None of the tribes ever saw her again.
The wasteland consumed her. All that she was became lost to the unforgiving sun and burning sands. Her mind left her and she forgot who she was, feeling parts of herself drifting away day by day until nothing remained. She fought to hold on to herself but to no avail... until she remembered the anger and the hatred. The Legion had taken all that was dear to her. The tribes had called her cursed, death maiden, dark mother... she would show them all... someday... Finally she paused in her wanderings, collapsed, and let the desert take her.
She awoke in paradise. She found herself at the edge of a lake surrounded by trees. Water fell from the sky in torrents and filled the lake, as waves rolled across its surface. Everywhere she looked the world was green. Plants and trees that she had never seen before stretched as far as the eye could see. And from among the trees strange animals gazed at her, their eyes filled with curiosity, not the hunger of the wasteland.
As she stood looking across the landscape, she heard a whirring sound behind her. When she turned to look, she saw a shining metallic thing, watching her.
"I see that you are awake at last," it said with a woman's voice. "I am Diana. Can you tell me your name?"
"I... I don't..." She paused as she tried to remember who she was, struggling with the blackness that was her mind. "Dark Mother," she blurted at last. "They called me the Dark Mother."
"Did they, now? Well, I shall call you Hecate then. Do you mind?"
"Yes. Forgive me, I know you don't understand, but I find it amusing. You see, I am Diana, and she was the goddess of the full, or bright moon. Hecate was her opposite, the goddess of the new, or dark moon. She was also known as the Dark Mother. So, I thought I would christen you Hecate."
"Yes. Both were goddesses of the moon... Forgive me; I must be confusing you to no end. I've been alone for centuries and I find myself babbling now that I have someone to talk to. Come. Let me show you my world and we will talk and get to know one another. There is much that we can learn from each other."
Hecate gazed at the shining one, nodded, and began to walk with... her. She had found paradise, a goddess, and had been elevated to the status of an equal. Now she was being offered knowledge. It was knowledge with which to gain vengeance over those who had wronged her.
When Hecate had collapsed in the desert, she was near death from dehydration and heat stroke. Fortunately for her, she was near the Nursery when she collapsed. Diana had been performing a routine survey of the Nursery surroundings, when she happened upon the tribal lying in the sand. She immediately dispatched a worker robot to collect her and bring her back. She spent the next couple of weeks tending her until she regained consciousness.
Diana spent the next several months teaching Hecate about herbs and plants, as well as their uses in treating ailments. She also spoke of breeding among animals, what to look for to ensure strong future stock, and how to recognize congenital traits that could be eliminated by proper breeding. When Hecate asked if the same technique could be applied to humans, Diana admitted that it could, but spoke of the virtues of love and free choice. She did not realize that her words now fell upon deaf ears.
Diana did not realize that Hecate had sunk into madness. In her loneliness and innocence she continued to teach her everything that she asked for, and Hecate absorbed it all and twisted it to suit her own needs and desires. Eventually she told Diana that she needed to leave, but would someday return when the time was right for her to do so.
Hecate braided her hair in the fashion of her lost tribe, and then painted her face so that none could recognize her. She traveled to the very same tribes that had rejected her and aided them with her new found knowledge of midwifery, and herbal medicine. Once she gained the trust of a tribe, she began to preach her life/death/rebirth religion. She asked that young women of the tribe join her, and aid her in helping all the tribes of the wasteland. Thus the Daughters of Hecate were born.
Eventually the Daughters began to decide who could marry and who could not, who could have children and who could not. Only a Daughter was allowed to deliver a child into the world and it was done in a birthing tent set apart from the rest of the tribe. No males were allowed in or near the tent. Anyone who disobeyed their edict was either stricken with impotence or their wives bore sickly children. If a Daughter was ever harmed or killed, the men of the tribe were rendered impotent until a new Daughter was assigned to them. And so the Daughters grew in power and infamy.
Unbeknownst to the tribes, the Daughters were taking the best of their children and replacing them with the weak or infirm. The best of the males were taken to the Ouroboros to become warriors in the Hounds of Hecate, while the best of the females were taken to become Daughters. Over the years Hecate watched as the tribes grew subtly weaker, and her followers grew stronger and stronger. Soon, vengeance would be hers.
Her plan was simple. When the tribes were weak enough, her Hounds would sweep down upon them, and annihilate them from the face of the earth. The same would come to pass with Caesar and his legion. When all who had wronged her were gone, she and her people would march upon paradise, and reclaim it as their just reward.
Interactions with the player character
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Appearances in games
Hecate did not appear nor was mentioned in any of the published games, but was to appear in the canceled Fallout 3 project by Black Isle codenamed Van Buren. The player could take her down and free the people from her tyranny (and possibly weaken them in the long run) or let her religion prosper (and build a hardier stock of people that could better survive the rigors of the wasteland).
It is not certain if it will appear in any future Fallout game, but it is known that Bethesda Softworks received all Van Buren design documents from Interplay and might re-use some of the background from them.
Behind the scenes
- Hecate is a reference to the Greco-Roman goddess of the same name who is associated with magic, witchcraft, necromancy, and crossroads.
- Drake dialogue file
- Fast-Hands dialogue file
- Simple organizations
- Ouroboros design document/1
- Ouroboros design document/2
- Boulder design document/3
- Twin Mothers tribe PIPBoy entries
- Blackfoot tribe PIPBoy entries
- Blackfoot Tribe design document/3
- Blackfoot Tribe design document/4
- Twin Mothers design document/1
- Twin Mothers design document/2
- Mesa Verde design document/1
- Mesa Verde design document/2
- Boulder design document/5
- No Mutants Allowed posts on Van Buren
- Van Buren leaks at the No Mutants Allowed forum.
- GameBanshee interview with John Deiley.