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Could be that NCR found some blood on me, and none of it mine. Could be that a few of those Khans didn't die from NCR bullets.

Sergeant Bitter-Root is a sniper who is currently assigned to Alpha Team of NCR First Recon that's stationed at Camp McCarran in 2281.


Bitter-Root is a sniper with the NCR's First Recon at Camp McCarran. He is not very friendly and does not like to talk; however, if asked about it, he says that he does not "mean anything by it," and that it's only his nature.[5]

As a child his parents were members of the Great Khans living in Bitter Springs. His father was a sadistic murderer with an alcohol problem who used to take Bitter-Root out shooting members of the NCR, military personnel and civilians alike, since the age of three, later laughing with his fellow drug addicts about the killings. Bitter-Root's mother was an insipid person whose only useful quality to the group seemed to be her being, to quote Bitter-Root's father, "a smokin' hot piece of ass," attempting unsuccessfully to sell her son into slavery on numerous occasions in exchange for Jet. He loathed his parents and the upbringing he received.[6][7]

Bitter-Root was "liberated" from this environment during the Bitter Springs Massacre by the NCR troops and then-Captain Dhatri, who took him in as his son. He claims he does not remember anything about the massacre, but when pressed he admits that after the battle the blood he was covered with was not necessarily all spilled by the NCR and that perhaps he had seized the opportunity to settle some of his own scores.[8] He doesn't feel bad over the massacre, furthermore he has grown to hate the Great Khans for their way of life, which he describes as lazy, trumped-up, raiders, who if they aren't actively taking chems they are selling them.[9][10]

Bitter-Root's name is part of an old Great Khans ritual; upon reaching the age of adulthood, one is severely beaten in a rite of passage, and if surviving, afterward they choose their own name. Although too young to undergo the beat-down himself, he chose the name Bitter-Root and feels that the Bitter Springs Massacre was his ritual and that the Great Khans "owe" him his name. His choice of name has a double meaning, referring both to his bitter roots as well as to the traumatic event that he considered his rite of passage - the Bitter Springs Massacre.[11]

Bitter-Root's past haunted him long after being taken in by Captain Dhatri, to the extent that he would eventually seek therapy from Doctor Usanagi of the Followers of the Apocalypse. With her assistance, he was able to work through some of his demons.[12][13] He loves his job, as he believes (or wants himself to believe) that he is eliminating people who deserve death.[14]

Interactions with the player character

Interactions overview

FO76 ui icon quest.png
This character is involved in quests.


Effects of player's actions

Upon completing the Driver Nephi portion of the Three-Card Bounty quest by claiming Nephi's bounty, Alpha Team moves to Camp Forlorn Hope to help with the Legion at Nelson. Bitter-Root can then be found in the Camp Forlorn Hope barracks.


Apparel Weapon Other items On death
NCR armor
1st Recon beret
Hunting rifle


Sergeant Bitter-Root is the only active member of First Recon that actually sleeps at night. The others simply stand or sit around.

Notable quotes


Sergeant Bitter-Root appears only in Fallout: New Vegas.


  1. The Courier: "I didn't mean to offend. You don't have to tell me, if you'd rather not."
    Bitter-Root: "[SUCCEEDED] It's a Khan name. You know... the "Great Khans." That's what my parents were. I figured I grew up around the bastards... they owed me a name, after all they put me through."
    (Bitter-Root's dialogue)
  2. Bitter-Root: "I'm Bitter-Root. First Recon. You got a reason to talk to me?
    (Bitter-Root's dialogue)
  3. The Courier: "Where can I find some work around here?"
    Bitter-Root: "You a merc? Then I guess you'd want to talk to my, uh... father. Major Dhatri. He's our CO."
    The Courier: "Your father is your commanding officer? Is that allowed?"
    Bitter-Root: "Yeah, look... he's not my real father. He just looked after me, for a while. It's a long story. And I'd get tired of talking before it was through."
    (Bitter-Root's dialogue)
  4. The Courier: "I heard you're Bitter-Root's father."
    Dhatri: "Adoptive father, yes. I was very proud when he made First Recon. I know that every time I send them out, I could be sending him to his death. But, if it's not me, it'll be somebody else. At least this way I get one more chance to see him."
    (Dhatri's dialogue)
  5. The Courier: "Not too friendly, are you?"
    Bitter-Root: "Guess not. I don't mean nothing by it. You really want to talk to somebody, try 10 of Spades. He's always got plenty to say."
    (Bitter-Root's dialogue)
  6. The Courier: "Losing your parents must have been hard for you. I'm sorry."
    Bitter-Root: "You're sorry? Well, that makes one of us. Bitter Springs was the best thing that ever happened to me. Best thing that ever happened to my parents, too. They were as bad as the rest. Worse, maybe."
    The Courier: "You don't really mean that, do you?"
    Bitter-Root: "Don't I? Mister, you never met my parents./Don't I? Beg pardon, ma'am, but you never met my parents. My dad, he got himself fucked up, every chance he got. Always started with folk for no reason. Hell, he was the one who taught me to shoot. You know how? By taking potshots at NCR. And not just soldiers. Civilians, too. Even kids. Then he'd get high with his buddies and swap tales about the folk they killed. Bunch of animals. And my mom... couple times she tried to sell me to some waster, just to score some Jet. Even the other Khans said she was useless. Only reason they kept her around was because she was a... how'd my dad say it... "a smokin' piece of ass.""
    (Bitter-Root's dialogue)
  7. The Courier: "What happened to your parents?"
    Bitter-Root: "They're dead. Got themselves killed at Bitter Springs. Served them right, if you ask me."
    (Bitter-Root's dialogue)
  8. The Courier: "How did you survive the massacre?"
    Bitter-Root: "Guess I could tell a pretty good story, if I had a mind. But the truth is, I don't know. Just got lucky. They brought me to Dhatri after the battle. He was just a Captain, back then. Guess he saw something in me... knew I didn't belong with the Khans. Maybe he felt bad, too. About how his men killed my folks. I told him he did me a service, but he didn't believe me. Still doesn't. He's a good man, Dhatri. Doesn't act like it sometimes, I know. But he didn't have to take me in."
    The Courier: "You're not telling me something. You couldn't have forgotten the whole massacre."
    Bitter-Root: "It's like I tell Major Dhatri. Best not look under a rock, if you don't really want to know what's there. Could be that NCR found some blood on me, and none of it mine. Could be that a few of those Khans didn't die from NCR bullets. I had scores of my own to settle... deeper ones than NCR ever had. Don't bother asking who they were with."
    (Bitter-Root's dialogue)
  9. The Courier: "What do you know about the Great Khans?"
    Bitter-Root: "They're scum. Lazy, trumped-up Raiders. Most of the time, they're drunk or high, and when they're not shooting chems, they're selling them. Used to have a settlement up at Bitter Springs, 'til they pissed off NCR and got slaughtered for their trouble. Lot of us got killed at Bitter Springs. Lot of them, I mean. My parents died, too."
    (Bitter-Root's dialogue)
  10. The Courier: "Tell me about happened to them at Bitter Springs."
    Bitter-Root: "It was massacre. That's what a lot of NCR folk will tell you. Most of them feel plenty bad about what happened. But I was there. Saw it myself. I don't care what anybody says. The Khans asked for Bitter Springs. They wouldn't leave the NCR be. My damn parents, too. They were just as bad as the rest."
    (Bitter-Root's dialogue)
  11. The Courier: "So your name... it comes from Bitter Springs."
    Bitter-Root: "In the Khans, you're not fully grown 'til you've taken a beat-down. Everybody gathers round and hits you until you're damn near dead. After that - if you haven't begged for mercy - you get to choose a new name. One you'll use for the rest of your life. When NCR slaughtered the Khans at Bitter Springs, I hadn't got my beat-down yet. I was still too young. Way I see it, Bitter Springs was my beat-down. So afterward... I gave myself a name. It's all I've got from the Khans, and it's all I ever want."
    (Bitter-Root's dialogue)
  12. The Courier: "I'm trying to get Corporal Betsy to go see a doctor. I heard you saw Usanagi yourself."
    Bitter-Root: "10 of Spades really ought to keep his mouth shut, but he's right. There were a lot of things in my past I just couldn't leave behind. It helped. A little. Well, more than a little. Betsy ought to pay a visit to Usanagi since it can't hurt none."
    (Bitter-Root's dialogue)
  13. The Courier: "I'm trying to convince Corporal Betsy to go see a doctor. Any ideas?"
    10 of Spades: "Oh, b-b-because of what that fuck Cook-Cook did? W-well, it's n-not the same thing, but D-Doc Usanagi helped me with my s-s-stuttering. The d-doc has a c-clinic north of here. Can't m-m-miss it. You should t-talk to Bitter-Root, too. He's b-been to see the doc, too."
    (10 of Spades' dialogue)
  14. Bitter-Root: "That's one less drugged-out waster. Best part of this job - shooting folks who deserve it."
    (Bitter-Root's dialogue)