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Here's the situation:

  • I finished Cass's quest (Heartache by the Numbers) peacefully, with stealth. I was not caught by the Crimson Caravan nor the Van Graffs with my sneaking around for their secrets, and Cass and I reported them both to NCR.
  • I am idolized by both NCR and (I'm not sure how this happened) Crimson Caravan.

I popped into Freeside to go looking for Rex, because I thought I needed him for Jimmy's Well (oops, didn't), and the Silver Rush Crier started shooting at me. I took him down, and as I approached the Atomic Wrangler, a bunch of Van Graff thugs appeared outside the Silver Rush. I dispatched them, went inside, and Gloria, Jean-Baptiste and their thugs were all trying to kill me. Well, being an NCR guy (erm, this run) through and through, I wiped them all out.

But my question is why. They didn't catch me when I was stealthy (I was using a stealth boy and showed [HIDDEN] the entire time), they didn't catch me stealing (why not, I was using a stealth boy already), and I got away clean with Cass. So why were they hostile the next time I entered Freeside?

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maybe they smelled you? hygiene doesn't seem like a big thing in the wastes –  Xantec Jan 12 '11 at 5:04
    
Was Cass with you? I just had this same thing happen last night. She was with me, and I think she may have shot first... –  Zoredache Jan 12 '11 at 9:01
    
@Zoredache Han shot first: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Han_shot_first –  Batophobia Jun 21 '13 at 16:06
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5 Answers

up vote 10 down vote accepted

The Van Graffs and their thugs are set to become hostile as soon as you complete the quest in a negative way for them.

If you need an in-game explanation, they might have an informer in the NCR army.

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That's it. Seems like this was changed in Patch 1.2.0: fallout.wikia.com/wiki/… –  Wilerson Jan 12 '11 at 13:12
    
It's possible to get both perks this way actually. Completing the quest the peaceful way, and ending the quest, locks it in and she gets that perk. Then, if/when they attack you, you get the Hand of Vengance. I saw on, I believe it was the wiki, that you actually get both this way, despite that the first no longer shows up in the perk list. –  Selonianth Jun 9 '13 at 3:36
    
Am unsure what ending you get out of it though. –  Selonianth Jun 9 '13 at 3:36
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The van Graffs get hostile after ratting them out to the NCR, and that's fine with me, it's pretty logical really.

The thing is that the quest to peacefully "take down" the van Graffs and the Crimson Caravan (Birds of a fether) fails as you enter the part of Freeside that has the Kings, the Wrangler, the entrance to the strip and the van Graffs (kind of hard to avoid for the rest of the game), even if you don't shoot back since the van Graff thugs will get attacked by every other Freeside NPC after they attack you.

This means that you can't really finish the game with the peaceful Cass quest, since it will fail forever if you even enter the above mentioned part of Freeside. Basically they patched the game to atomatically break one quest, or at least that's how it looks to me, taking all things into account. Am I wrong?

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Yes, they are automatically set to become hostile after the patch. Just kill Gloria first and Cass will want to kill the Van Graffs. Choose to loot them. You can then wipe them out and steal all their stuff without penalties. Plus you get both of Cass' perks if you do peaceful first. That may be a bug, but it is proven you keep both. Not sure what will happen if you go back to the outpost. About to check it out, but by the looks of it, nothing, since it didn't give me any NCR infamy.

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As of patch 1.2 taking the non-violent path to "Heartache by the Number" makes the Van Graffs hostile to you even if you weren't caught during the mission.

Be careful because killing Gloria will result in Rose of Sharon Cassidy wanting to complete the quest the "violent" way. On the upside it is possible to get the Hand of Vengeance perk if you have changed your mind.

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Is it possible you were dressed as the NCR or some other faction?

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