"Beth, seriously, I think Baby-Grimes has had enough attention for the day!" Vicky says, while she throws her pen to the ceiling.
"Her name's Judith" Carl says, a little annoyed, but also proud. I give him a smile. He's probably the one who came up with it. Unfortunately, Vicky doesn't think it's very special.
"Yeah, whatever. The poor kid's gonna get so confused, with all those different names. First Lil' Asskicker, then Judith, now Baby-Grimes, Pumpkin-Head, Muffin-Princess…"
"Did you come up with that?" Axel says, as he tip-toes Vicky. That guy gives me the creeps. He asked for my age earlier. Freak.
"Yeah, who else? Your dead sister?"
Axel's face turns pale, and he blinks with his eyes, confused. "How…why….what…"
"She sometimes comes to visit. She's really annoying, but she's funny."
"Does it matter?" Vicky says, annoyed, throwing the pen in the air. Her diary lays next to her, with two pages written, and I can see drawings of walkers and smileys. "Have you fixed the boiler yet? I'm smelling like something dirty."
"Uh….what? Boiler, yes. I should get going." Axel stands up, and leaves the cellblock. Carl shakes his head.
"That was a bit harsh, Vick" he says carefully. And again, Vicky doesn't care. She shrugs. I walk towards one of the cell, where my father is making her dinner.
"Beth, can we go outside? I'm bored. Let's go on patrol!" I roll with my eyes at the annoying voice. My dad chuckles, as I hand him over the little baby.
"That's maybe a good idea. Carol deserves some rest too."
"What?!" I say loudly. "No. I don't wanna!"
"C'mon, it can be fun" he says, while he shakes the bottle. "Besides, I'd like you to learn some skills, and I think Vicky is the perfect mentor."
"Are you crazy?"
"He's not, but you are, if you don't come outside" Vicky suddenly stands next to me. "I can teach you some…stuff. And we got lots of practice material up by the fences."
I look at my dad, but he avoids me by looking at Judith. I let out a long breath.
"I take that as a yes." Before I can reject, Vicky pulls my arm with her, and a second later, we stand outside in the night. Carol already walks towards us, carrying a big gun, or something. I don't know what it's called. I'm a girl, okay?
"O, maybe I can teach you how to use a rifle too!"
So that's what it's called.
Carol walks inside, after short instructions I already forgot, and we walk towards the outside fence. There are not many walkers this time, at least, there are not more than this afternoon.
"Can you catch?" I turn around, and see a knife flying through the air. I jump aside, into the fence, and immediately there are two walkers pulling my hair towards their teeth. I yell, and Vicky laughs.
"Wow, you're a natural worm!" she says, as she picks up the knife. She doesn't even worry about me getting eaten an inch further. Like she has all the time of the world, she stabs the two walkers, and pulls me away from the others who are coming our direction.
"Why did you do that?!" I shout, holding in my tears.
"Well, you reminded me of a worm. I dunno why. I guess it's because fishermen always put at the thing where they catch fish with."
"You really need to work on your vocabulary" I say, as I turn around and start walking away.
"Oh, c'mon, you're pissed already? We haven't even practiced yet!"
"What was that then?" I shout turning around. The walkers at the fence are starting to crowd at the place where Vicky stands, but she doesn't notice. "A warming up?!"
"Something like that" she says, shrugging. I grunt frustrated, and turn around again.
"Go do patrol yourself."
So, my plan worked. Beth believed me, now hates me, and left me alone. Now I'm on the other side of the fence, in a tree, walkers crawling at the bottom. Gotta find a way to distract them. I wish I had muffins. Muffins are the answer to everything. Maybe not walkers. But what if the muffins are made of human flesh? See, there are muffins for everyone!
I hope this Governor-guy-problem can be solved with muffins too. Maybe I should make a poisoned one, or a really big one and push it in his mouth, so he chokes in it. Or make a swimming pool full of muffins, and make a huge one and attach it with a rope around his ankle, so he drowns in muffins while there's a giant muffin holding him down.
Or I could go after Rick and Daryl and Michelle and Oscar. Of course, Rick told me to stay in the prison. But he can't command me. I mean, I'm not even a part of their group.
"You need to hold her a little up, let her head rest at your upper arm. Yes, that's right. Careful now."
Hershel gives me instructions on how to feed my little sister. I feel really dumb, not knowing that if I hold her lower she could choke. If Hershel wasn't here, I probably killed her.
"Don't worry, you're doing fine" he says, as he lays a hand on my shoulder. He probably noticed my worried face. I smile at him, quickly, and look back at my sister, as if I look away too much, I do something wrong.
Suddenly, Beth storms into the cellblock, almost bumping into Carol.
"Sorry" I hear her say, as she walks towards the cellblock where we are in.
"Beth, sweety, what happened?" Carol asks, and I see Hershel's face getting pale. His eyes widen, and he carefully stands up. Beth stands in the doorway, her hair all messy, her eyes big and full of fear, and I see her shaking all over her body.
"It's Vicky" she says, with a trembling voice. Hershel spreads his arms, and Beth walks towards him and buries her face in his chest.
"What did she do?" Hershel asks. He softly rubs over Beth's hair, and she's does her best trying not to cry.
"She almost killed me. She threw a knife at me, and I jumped away. But I jumped at the fence, and the walkers…they touched me! They grabbed me! I was so scared!"
"Are scratched? Bitten?" Carol asks, as she walks into the cell too.
"No, I'm fine. I'm scared."
"That's OK, honey, I understand." Carol rubs Beth over her shoulders. "Let's get you something to get your nerves down."
"Wait" I say, and they turn around. "Where's Vicky?"
Beth suddenly isn't that scared and hurt anymore, but seems annoyed by the fact that I asked for the other girl. "How would I know? I left as soon as I had the chance."
"You left her alone?!" I say loudly. Judith drops the bottle, and starts crying, scared of the loudness. Hershel bends over and takes her in his arms.
"I was scared, okay? I wanted to get out of there, away from her. Didn't you hear what I just said?"
"Yes, I heard you, but she can't be left alone! She'll escape!"
"How could I know?"
"Stop it, both of you" Carol says, with a motherly voice. She looks us both in the eyes, and then at Hershel. "What should we do?"
"Where did you see her for the last time?" he asks Beth.
"The outside fence. You don't think she…climbed over it, right?"
"I got the keys," I say, pointing at my belt. "If she really escaped, that's the only possible way."
"Then I say we do nothing" Hershel says, with a look at Carol. "We wait, see what happens. Maybe she'll find the others. Maybe not. But we can't leave. We stay here. All of us."
With the last words, he looks at me. I look at the ground, knowing that is meant for me. Crap, I really hate this.
I look over the car, the lights of the town reflecting at the front. I can see the shadows of the guards, walking on top of a barricade which is about four, five food high. Michonne says she knows a way in, but suddenly left.
"What do we do? Jus' attack 'm?" Daryl whispers. I narrow my eyes, and make a quick count.
"No, too many. We need another way in."
"Shouldn't we distract them or somethin'?" Oscar says, and I try not to sigh.
He looks at the ground, and grunts a soft 'No'. I suddenly hear something move behind us, and we all turn around, holding our weapons up. It's Michonne. 'This way' she mimes.
We follow her, walk in a big circle around the barricade, staying in the shadows. She leads us to the back door of a building. I see the door is already open. I walk towards it, but without me touching it, it flies open.
"Hi, Rickie-boy, how yah doin'?" Vicky smiles.
"Oh shit" Daryl whispers angrily.
"Found her here" Michonne says, somehow a little amused. "After a quick apology for throwing my sword in the toilet, she helped me find a way in."
"How did you get here?" I ask the red head. She shrugs.
"Been here before. I knew a quicker path to here. I followed a guy through the woods. You just drove, like, five miles extra."
I sigh, and close my eyes for a sec, thinking. I don't want Vicky here for a reason, and that is because she can't do stealth. She just can't. With her here, our whole plan could go wrong. We could end up dead because of her.
"Why are yah here?!" Daryl whispers loudly, his head turning red of anger.
"What do yah think? I don't wanna miss all the fun!" Vicky chuckles. "And I thought you could use my help. I know the way in, and stuff."
"Thanks for the offer, but we already had a guide" Daryl replies sarcastically. I see a twinkle in Vicky's eyes, and I realize she's enjoying this.
"A guide who leaves her tour? I think you're gonna get fired, Michelle." Michonne rolls with her eyes, and Vicky's lips curl into a smile. "C'mon, how long has she been in the prison? An hour? Two? You already seem to trust her more than me."
"I don' see why that's surprising" Daryl grunts.
"Yeah, well you don't see a lot of things" Vicky says back. Michonne sighs.
"How the hell did you get here so fast?"
"While you were stuck in that little house in the woods, I carjacked, drove a shortcut, and waited for you guys. You really need to work out more. Seriously, I waited here for like, an hour."
"Why are you here?" I ask, repeating Daryl's question.
"Well, I wanna go in there too….to save Glenn and Maggie, of course. But I also wanna see what the Governor looks like, 'cause I'm guessing that if he really is a bad guy, he must have an eye patch."
"That's why you're here?" Oscar asks, a little stunned. I realize that we're already used to the crazy plans of Vicky, but Oscar isn't.
"Yep. But I don't think the plan's gonna work" she says, crossing her arms. "See, we're outside this town, discussing over nothing, while Glenn and Maggie are in there, probably getting tortured, or even worse. I like them, they're cute. I don't want them to die yet. That's not fair."
I look at Daryl, and he shakes his head. Not a good idea, bro.
I look at Michonne, she looks back at me, narrowing her eyes. It makes me a little uncomfortable, but I stare back. I then look at the ground, and imagine me looking at myself. What should I do?
"Okay, well, let's get inside, then. We have enough trouble already. We don't need to make this one too."
"For fuck's sake" Daryl sighs, not happy with my decision. Michonne glances at me, and shakes her head. Oscar doesn't know what to think, and only stares at the red haired girl.
"Yes!" Vicky happily throws her hands up in the air. "The Avengers are back!"
He said I'm going down. What does he mean by that? Can't he just say 'I'm gonna kill you'? Maybe he wants me to think about it, maybe he wants me to go crazy.
I heard sounds earlier. A fight. I heard Glenn shouting, and I think there was a walker too. And later, there was nothing. I'm really scared he's dead now. I hope not. I like him.
Maybe going down means they're going to throw me in the pit. A few miles out, there's a pit where we catch biters in. Maybe they're going to throw me in there, and watch me get eaten by the biters.
Or maybe they'll throw me off a building, so that I splash into the ground like a pancake. Or maybe they'll put me in a coffin and bury me alive. Is that what 'going down' means?
I don't know. I don't know. I cover my ears with my hands. I don't know.
I suddenly hear sounds, shouting, footsteps, and then gunshots. I slowly step back, and sit down in the corner of the room. What is going on?
From under the door, I can see smoke coming into the room. Fire! There's a fire? There's a fire! Call the firemen! Wait, there are no firemen. They're all dead, or undead, or still alive, but not firemen anymore. And they sure as hell don't have a phone anymore.
Suddenly, the door flies open. More smoke is coming inside, and I try to hide in the corner. There's a shadow, a black mass, in the smoke. I try to shout, but my voice is stuck in my throat. The figure comes closer, but not close enough to be in the light. My heart is bumping in my ears, and I can't breathe properly. I make myself small, as if the walls can protect me.
The figure suddenly lets out a laughter. It's a happy laughter, as if something's funny, or it's something wonderful. The person steps into the light, and the first thing I see, are two blue eyes, surrounded by hair red as flames.
"What the dump? Hey, I know you!" the red haired girl stands in the doorway, hands on her hips. "You're Dan, or Danny, or something, right?"
I blink with my eyes. Is this real? Am I hallucinating? She walks towards me, and looks down. "You don't look so good, friend."
Did she just call me 'friend'? Is it really her?
"I understand. I would look the same if I was in here for too long" she says, looking around the room. "It's very boring. C'mon, come with me. I'm sure you'll like it more where I'm going."
I see her move her arm, and I hold both of mine in the air, protecting myself. I wait for a hit, a slap, a fist. But there is none. A couple of seconds, maybe a minute long, I wait for it. But when I look, I see Vicky standing with her hand held out to me, offering me to help me up. She has her eyebrows lifted.
"Are you coming or what?"
I hesitate, but take her hand. With a surprisingly amount of strength, she pulls me up.
"T-thank you" I stutter softly. I'm still trembling all over my body. Vicky gives me a smile.
"No problem. You helped me out too."
The way she says it, it seems like I helped her in a good way. For her, it probably was, but it only got me in trouble. I don't say it, I just keep it somewhere in my memory, to say to her later. If there is a later.
We walk into the hall, which is full of smoke.
"Stay close, and don't make a sound." I feel awkward when Vicky grabs my hand, but she doesn't care about awkward. She softly pulls me with her, into the smoke, staying low. We're avoiding a couple of men, but not all of them.
At the end of the hall, in the room where I last saw Glenn, two men shout at us, and grab their guns.
"Okay, not good" Vicky says. "My homies left me. Sorry guys, can't stay for the party. Gotta run!"
Vicky pulls me behind her, as she drops something on the floor. Another smoke grenade.
"Oh, this is so much fun!" she says, and without any warning, she stars running across the street. It's filled with smoke, and I can see the guards on the barricade pointing their guns at us.
"Vicky! Wait!" I shout, as I run after her. Bullets fly around me, scraping my clothes. I don't know how I did it, but I made it to the other side without getting shot.
"We have to get outta here!" I say to her, as we hide behind a pillar. "The Governor will kill us if we stay here any longer!"
"Chill out, nothing will happen to us" she says calmly. "Besides, I have to find my neighbours. Wouldn't be very fair if I left them here, right?"
I suddenly think of my mother, and my little brother. Shit, they are still here too. I can't go to them, it's too far to the apartment. But I can't leave them here. Or can I? My mother is happy here, so is my little brother. He finally found some friends to play with. My mother finally smiles again. Can I just take that away from them?
Wait, no, it's not good. Not with everything they don't know. There's a lot more going on with the Governor than just a charming man who runs a town. And my mother doesn't know about it. But I can't take her out there again. We got ourselves almost killed for too many times. I can't do that to her. Staying here probably brings both of them in more danger than taking them out there again.
"Yeah, you're right" I eventually say. "Let's go find them."
"Is Merle this Governor?"
I can't believe it. Merle. My brother. My big brother. He's alive. He's here. And he is in so much trouble when I get him in my fingers.
"No, he's somebody else" Maggie says, kneeling down next to Glenn. "Your brother is his lieutenant or something."
"He was in there?" I ask, feeling cold as I look at the blood on Glenn's lip. "Does he know I'm still with you?"
"He does now" Glenn says, hardly speaking. "Rick, I'm sorry. We told him where the prison was, we couldn't hold out, we-"
"Don't" Rick says, hunching forward. "No need to apologize."
I stand there, as a statue. Merle. Fucking Merle. The happenings around me fade away. Movements are blurred. I hear talking, but don't understand the words. My brother. He's still alive.
"Hey" I say to Rick. "If Merle's around here, I gotta see him!"
"Not now" he says, helping Glenn up. "We're still on dangerous territory."
"But he's my brother, I ain't-"
"No! Look what he did! We gotta get outta here, now!"
"I gotta talk to him, work somethin' out!"
"You're not thinking straight. Look, how are we gonna make it out? Glenn can barely walk, Vicky's still out there, if we get overrun by walkers, if this Governor catches up with us….I need you! Are you with me?"
I look at him. The sheriff. The man responsible for me losing my brother. The man who handcuffed him to a roof. The man who became my friend. The man who saved my life more than I can count.
I nod. "Yeah. I'm with yah."
He nods, with a soft thank you. Helping Glenn towards the door, he waits. I walk towards the bag of gear, and grab one of our last smoke grenades.
"Stay tight, on three" Rick whispers. He counts down, pulls the door open, and I throw the grenade outside. As soon as it hits the floor, smoke comes out of both the ends of the tube. We start running, staying close together.
"There they are!" one of the men on the barricade shout. Immediately, there is shooting. Bullets fly around in the air, shouting and small lights when guns are fired fill the streets. We run. I shoot with the gun I'm holding, knowing that with every shot, I could hit my own brother.
Thanks to Diclonious57 for a new phrase; 'what the dump?'
And a little question; I need a nice name for Daniel's little brother. Got any suggestions? Leave a review, or send a message! I'll pick the coolest one!