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Of All These Yesterdays

An Old Friend

The scorching, unforgivable sun loomed overhead as I made my track through the dense and desolated Georgian woods. With the back of my hand, I wiped the sheen of sweat from my forehead, groaning at the unrelenting pain in the soles of my feet. Soon or later, I would have to find a place to rest my achy feet, but for now, I pushed the throbbing ache aside to focus on the task ahead - staying alive, which I knew better than anyone else.

Ever since I could remember, I had practically lived and survived out in the woods. With having an abusive, alcoholic stepfather and irresponsible mother, I and my older brother, Sam welcomed the woods as our safe haven away from the devil himself. My brother had taught me the ways of the woods, which he had obtained from our birth father before he died in a fatal car crash. Sam had a better, clearer memory of our father before his untimely death, but I had only been an infant at the time. I wasn’t even old enough to understand what death was.

A few years after his death, our mother met our stepfather. The man seemed fairly nice at first, but by the time we learned of his true colors, he and our mother were married. From there, our mother’s attitude changed toward us. She didn’t care that the stepfather mistreated us, and never did she raise a hand to stop the beatings. Our own mother allowed the abuse, which we ensured day in and day out. The woods back then had truly been our escape from the reality of our awful home life.

Nothing but the sounds of the forest surrounded me as I trudged on, not quite knowing where I was going at the point, but all I could think about was creating distance between me and Atlanta. The city was truly gone. Luckily enough, I escaped right as the bombs were dropped, sealing the fates of many civilians still trapped inside, but this had occurred weeks and weeks ago, and I have been hiding and making my way through the woods with only a backpack on my shoulders. I knew tracking through these woods required packing lightly. Aside from the only spare pair of clothing inside - the backpack had been at one time filled to the brim with nonperishable foods and water bottles, and now, I was on the very verge of running low. With this in mind, I knew I would either be left to scavenge a nearby town for supplies or starve to death. Either one would lead somehow to my demise. Who knew how many infected could be wandering in one of the towns nearby?

Keeping my eyes peeled for any immediate signs of danger, I couldn’t seem to brush off the uneasiness that expanded in the pit my stomach. My heart thumped against my ribcage and my sweaty fingers tightened on the trigger of my compound crossbow, which was aimed at the ready for any signs of the “walking dead” or “walkers,” which I had become accustomed to calling them. Whoever thought the dead would come back, and rise up from their deaths? Far-fetched was what it was. Never would I have been able to foresee such an event happening. We had all been taught that the dead were supposed to stay dead and now, that they were walking around eating the living, no one was ready for it – not me, not the army and surely not the whole entire world.

I had witnessed this the day I escaped Atlanta. The army, they had been outnumbered in so many ways. The dead just kept coming at them in hordes to feast upon their flesh; no amount of bullets could subdue the onslaught of decaying, flesh-eating monsters. These things were truly unstoppable in large multitudes and they had displayed this against the United States Army.

Feet crunching the underbrush, I came to terms with what needed to be done in order for me to survive this catastrophe, which I still had little hope would end. My sore feet protested in going any farther, but I carried on, pushing back the insufferable pain. I noticed I had been walking awhile and I had covered more ground than I ever imagined. Judging by how high the sun was in the sky, I assumed it to be mid afternoon Previously during this morning, I had left my perch high up in a tall, sturdy tree where I had slept the night before when the dawn’s early light ignited the sky. I found it safer to elevate myself far from the ground encase of any wandering walkers, who might venture into the forest when I turned in for the night.

Up ahead, I came to a break in the woods at a rock quarry whose waters glistened invitingly in the evening sunlight. How I wanted dive right into those waters, clothes and all! This smothering hot was so intolerable, but I knew I shouldn’t. It would be foolish of me in a time like this to be thinking about taking a dip in the rock quarry. Who knew how many walking, cannibalistic corpses were wandering around nearby? I couldn’t chance it, I thought, shaking my head, regretfully as I gazed longingly at the waves that lapped at the shore.

Walking to the water’s edge, I knew it couldn’t hurt to quench my sudden thirst. Also while I am at it, I could wash the sweat and grime off my face, and maybe even dip my feet in to soothe my aching feet.

While I was caught up in my thoughts, I didn’t notice the sudden movement from behind me, and before I even noticed them, they were upon me. I froze in my tracks as I felt them behind me, moving in light on their feet. Hunter’s feet. This wasn’t a walker because most of the time they made their presence known by their distinctive guttural moans. Knowing this, made relief flood my whole entire body, but at the same time, it made me grow apprehensive of this stranger’s intentions.

I have always been the one for mistrusting people, especially their motives. Sometimes I believe my stepfather made me this way. He had abused me so much that I couldn’t open up to anyone. From this experience, I locked away all my feelings and never ever let them out. The only person I had the ability to confide in was long gone – my brother, Sam. He knew exactly how to calm and comfort me when there wasn’t anyone else to go to. My big brother had always been there for me even when he left for the army, which I had begged him not to enlist in. I wanted him home to protect me from our stepfather’s drunken rage, but somehow, I had survived those few years when my brother gone off to war.

The day Sam was released from duty, I had anticipated on seeing him home. I had even set up a small party for his arrive with a few of his best friends, but he never showed. Later, our mother called, informing me of the horrible news – my brother was dead, killed in a fatal head-on collision from a reckless and road rage induced driver. That day I broke down, screamed at the top of my lungs for the brother who would never come home. I felt that a piece of me was gone, shattered away by the untimely and unfair death of my brother, who had been only twenty-five at the time. I had been eighteen, straight out of high school.

“Stay where ya are, drop ya weapons and put ya hands in the air, lady and I won’t have to put an arrow through your head.” He warned, sternly in a heavy southern accent, which seemed so familiar to me.

Begrudgingly, I lowered my crossbow to the ground, and in the calmest undertone I could muster, I said while raising my hands in surrender, “Look. Mister, I don’t want no trouble. I was just passing through. Let’s just forget you saw me, and I’ll forget I saw you, how about it?”

“Nah no can do, missy,” He scoffed adamantly. Even from behind me, I could feel his glower drilling holes into the back of my head. My heart sped up inside my chest, so that I could hear its pulsating beat inside my head.

“Why?” I dared ask the man, who seeming brooding and ill-tempered.

“’Cause, lady you might be bit?” He accused, curtly, and when I didn’t reply fast enough for him, the man shot at me, severely, “Are ya? Have ya been bit?! Show me now!”

“No, I ain’t been bitten, ya dumb redneck!” I shot back, irritably at his accusations. I was done with playing nice. This man couldn’t just point the finger at me and get away with it.

Before, I knew what was happening, I was being jerked back by the forearm to face my accuser, who had rage in his clear cerulean eyes, and that’s when it hit me like a ton of bricks. I knew who this man was.

“Daryl Dixon, is that you?” I asked in amazement. The world sure was small. Who would’ve thought I would meet up with my next door neighbor and old friend at a time like this one? What were the odds?

At first Daryl stared at me in thorough bewilderment, but once he scanned my dirty, suntanned face, realization clicked in that brain of his. Smirking, the redneck said, “I’ll be damned, if it isn’t Sammy O’Shea’s little sister, Elena. Damn this shit would sure is small.”

Daryl released his tight, iron grip on my forearm. I bent down to pick up and replace my crossbow to its rightful place - slung on my shoulder, just as Daryl was doing with his. The crossbow must have been pointed directly at my back when he was interrogating me.

“You had me scared there, Dixon,” I admitted with a smirk. “I actually thought you was going to shoot me.”

“I wasn’t gonna, but if ya were someone else calling me dumb redneck, I might’ve shot ya right between ya eyes.”

Notes

Sorry, no Glenn, yet, but he'll probably more than likely be in the next chapter.

Thanks to those who have subscribed and voted!:DD Also special thanks to two of my commenters, Thewalkingdixon and CrossbowWings! I appreciate your feedback and I am glad that my readers are already enjoying this fanfic!:DD

Don't be a Silent Reader! I love and appreciate feedback from you guys!XD

Comments

this is good

Nina Nina
5/6/14

@dixiewolf
Thanks so much for the comment!:) Glad you enjoyed the update!XDD I was afraid this update wouldn't be good enough for my readers. I had really, really bad Writer's Block, and that was the whole reason why I had not updated in quite awhile.

I was so excited to see that you had updated! I'm glad Elena and Glenn are starting to interact. I'm sure he'll be able to break down the walls she's putting up around herself. Can't wait for more! :)

dixiewolf dixiewolf
5/2/14

@Blakeray
I am about to update right now!:) I hope you enjoy!:D Sorry, I haven't updated in quite awhile! I've been having terrible Writer's Block!:/

dracovengeance dracovengeance
4/30/14

please update

Blakeray Blakeray
4/18/14