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I'll Keep You Alive If You Show Me The Way

Chapter 2: Carl

My eyes fluttered open. It was morning, the sun was streaming down through the branches of the surrounding trees, stinging my eyes slightly. I looked over to the boy as he began to stir. I mustered all the strength I had left and pulled myself into a sitting position. The boy looked over to me.

"Morning," I croaked, rubbing the back of my neck.

Damn, I missed my bed. He smiled slightly and looked down. A lone walker was circling the bottom of our tree. I threw my head back and groaned.

"Do they ever piss off?"

They had the be the number one most irritating thing roaming this planet. I watched as the kid took out a bottle of water. I eyed it licking my lips.

"So, what's your name kid?" I questioned not taking my eye off the bottle.

"Carl, you?" he said, handing over the bottle.

I almost snatched it out of his hand. I brought it to my lips and took several gulps.

"Harleigh," I replied wiping my mouth. I passed the bottle back to him.

"How old are you?" I asked squinting at him through the sunlight.

"Thirteen,"h e replied.

"And how, may I ask did a thirteen year old survive all this," I said waving my hand in air.

"My group... We were separated last night..." he paused for a second.

I swung my legs, watching the creep below.

"Could you... Help me find them again?" he asked quietly.

"Nothing else planned for today!" I said cheerily.

I loaded my bow and shot the guy below us. I clambered down, helping Carl down too.

"So, I think we should head back to the camp," he said fixing his sheriff's hat.

I shrugged and walked after him.


It seemed that we had walked for several hours. Now we were sitting on a large rock in the middle of a clearing.

"I can't remember where the camp is!" Carl mumbled in a shaky voice resting his chin in his hands.

I lay back on the rock. I felt my stomach gurgle slightly. I reached down and held it. I wondered about Sam and hoped he would find me again.

"Where'd ye get your fancy hat, Carl?" I asked, hoping to distract him.

I couldn't deal with human emotions right now, especially some kid crying over his lost group.

"My dad," he said shortly.

Congrats, Harleigh, you've got your tears. I watched as one tear drop rolled down his cheek. What do I do? Pat his back? Carl is the first human being I've interacted with in ages. Even before this, I didn't know how to deal with people. In fact, I went out of my way to avoid them.

"We're never gonna find them," Carl sniffed, obviously trying not to get upset.

"Sure you will, they're probably out looking for you right now," I said, optimistically.

"If we do... I can ask if you can join us, I mean if you want."

I hummed in reply. Honestly, I don't care either way. If we did find them and they let me stay, great, if they didn't, even better. I was starting to feel a bit dizzy, black spots were crowding my vision. My stomach growled again.

"Shut up," I muttered.

"Are you hungry?" I heard his voice ask.

I felt like punching him, of course I was, it was the apocalypse. Instead, I just nodded.

"The others will have food,"he said quietly.

I nodded again and sat up. We began our search again.


It was nightfall once again. My body felt heavy as I dragged it through the forest in search of this damn group. They were kinda the only hope for me now anyways so I wasn't too pissed. But I did notice Carl glancing at me every few seconds. I sighed.

"I'm fine," I whispered to him.

He nodded a little and started walking ahead of me. Suddenly, adrenaline shot through me as loud footsteps were coming towards us from the left. I heard barking to my right.

"Carl!" I shouted. "Follow the sound of my dog ok? He won't bite he'll know you're alive."


"Go!" I shouted at him.

He nodded and took off leaving me by myself. I reached behind me and grabbed an arrow. I loaded my bow, realizing that I was slowing down with every move I made. It was a struggle to get the arrow onto the bow and an even bigger struggle to hold it up and anchor myself. My arms were screaming in agony, my only hope was adrenaline which had not kicked in properly yet. I heard a twig snap behind me. Twirling around I came face to face with a man and his crossbow.

I was aware that my arms were shaking, I probably looked pathetic and weak, but I did not lower my eyes from the blue ones opposite me. We glared at each other for several seconds, until I heard a click to my right. I didn't even flinch, I don't think I had the strength to give a shit if I died or not.

"Drop your weapon," a man's voice said beside me, I presumed he was the one holding a gun to my head.

I crouched down slowly and put my bow on the floor. Not sure if I would be able to get back up again, I knelt down beside it, feeling the damp soak through my jeans. Another man, rushed forward, picked up my bow and took a few steps back, not taking his eyes off me. I still held the crossbow man's gaze, realizing it was making him uncomfortable. I smirked slightly, happy I could do something. The man to my right lowered his gun.

"Are you alone?" he asked, quietly.

"Obviously," I replied, Carl had to get away, to get back to his group.

"She's lyin'," the redneck crossbow-man grunted.

I looked around me.

"Am I? Oh they must be hiding because I don't see anyone coming to help me."

He opened his mouth to reply but the guy to my right raised his hand, silencing him.

"There's no way she's by 'erself, look at 'er," Crossbow-man argued waving his crossbow at me.

I raised my eyebrow at him. The man to my right crouched down beside me. I turned my head to look at him. He was filthy, although not as bad as me, he had black, curly hair and striking blue eyes. He wore a white shirt and blue jeans, both were torn from whatever this world had thrown at him.

"Are you alone?" he asked again, slowly.

I nodded. His face was close to mine, He stared into my eyes, as if looking for something. Good luck mister, doubt you'd find anything, pretty sure my eyes are dead in my skull.

"You're not part of a group?"

I shook my head.

"Lyin' bitch!" Crossbow-man spat. "Rick! Look'a 'er! I thought she were a walker! No way she's on 'er own!"

"Well I am. And I have been. Since the start. Asshole," I snapped at him. "If I wasn't on my own I'd look more like you guys. Dumbass"

The third man spoke: "She has a point."

"Shut up."

"What's all this hollerin' about?" another voice said.

An older man with white hair appeared on the path. He spotted me and nodded. My eyes connected with Crossbow-man again as he spoke.

"I say we shoot 'er. Righ' in the mouth."

"How charming," I commented.

"Shut up," he said, raising the crossbow again.

"Daryl. Quit it. She's not some animal you can put down."

I froze, Daryl? Didn't Carl mention... Aw shit. Daryl noticed my change in expression.

"What's up with ya?" he questioned.

Okay. Maybe there are two Daryl's roaming around these woods.

"Is one of you a cop?" I blurted out.

"Rick is," the quiet one said, pointing to the guy crouching beside me.

I turned and looked him in the eyes.

"I'm not alone."


"I found Carl."

Rick stood up quickly and raised his gun again.

"Where is he!" he shouted, not asking, but demanding.

"I dunno! I told him to run when I-"

"Get up," he yelled, roughly dragging me off the ground by my arm.

I was a bit stunned, since earlier he was talking so softly.

"I was patient with you and you lied. WHERE IS MY SON?!" he screamed in my face.

Shock turned to anger.


"Daryl take her back to the camp," he ordered.

"Ya sure ya wann'er to know-"

"She's not dangerous! Glenn come with me."

Rick shoved me towards Daryl. I tripped over a twig but Daryl caught me before I hit the ground. I yanked my arm away from him, glaring up at him.

"Dumb bitch," he muttered, shaking his head.

"C'mon ol' man. Keep up," he called, walking away.

The older guy walked up beside me. He frowned at me slightly. If I had my strength I could easily overpower him, take his gun and run, but I didn't and that's probably why Daryl wasn't walking beside me. We began to follow him. Me, stumbling along behind the older man. He reached a grabbed my hand helping me climb over a fallen tree. Daryl was walking ahead without any struggle what so ever. I glared after him.

"Name's Hershel," the man said kindly.

"Harleigh," I grunted.



"Is uh... Carl alright?" he asked.

We reached Daryl who was waiting impatiently ahead of us.

"Yeah, saved his ass from a bunch of walkers," I said, my eyelids sliding shut.

They shot back open at the sound of Daryl scoffing.

"Y'know if I was feeling better I'd kick your ass."

"Why y'bit?" he said, spinning to face me, aiming his crossbow at my head.

"No asshole," I said using what was left of my strength to slap it away from my face.

He looked slightly amused before turning away again, looking around. If we were lost I was gonna laugh so hard.

"When was the last time you ate?" Hershel asked.

I shrugged and looked away. Daryl turned and was watching me now. I suddenly became aware of how small I was. My hip bones stuck out between my shirt and my jeans, my collar bones also jutted out along with my cheekbones, and my long black hair lay limp and lifeless, framing my face. Daryl was right, I'm basically a walker. I didn't like how the two men stared.

"Are we lost or something?" I sighed, folding my arms across my chest.

Daryl just laughed and continued walking.

"Thought y'needed a break!" he called back.

Okay, move walkers down to second place on my list of "Most Irritating Things Roaming This Planet."


We made it back to the camp. It was in another clearing, with tents and a fire. Hershel sat me down on a log beside the fire, told me he was getting a blanket and left. I was aware that Daryl was watching me closely as other people got up out of there tents. It would be dawn soon.

"Carl?" a woman questioned Daryl and Hershel.

Hershel shook his head as he draped a green hairy blanket over my shoulders.

"Carol, would you mind cooking some soup or something?"

My eyes began to shut. I felt really hot, like I had a fever.

"Is she bit?" another woman asked.

"No, we need to get food into her or she's going to die of starvation."

"Why are ya helpin' 'er? She's not our problem!" that irritating voice spoke.

"Can't just let the poor girl starve," a gentle voice said.

I heard pots hitting against each other. I felt a hand touch mine. I jumped thinking it was Daryl, but realized they are be too soft to belong to him. I opened my eyes and I looked up at a worried woman.

"I'm Lori, Carl's mom."

"Carl s'okay. With Sam."

"Who's Sam?!" Daryl yelled.

I saw that he was standing right beside me. I batted his knee weakly.

"Don't get your panties in a bunch. Dog."

"Did y'jus' call me a dog?! I'll-"

"No! Sam dog,"I muttered, too tired to form an actual sentence.

"Sam is a dog?" Lori asked.


"Hey, stay awake," I heard Hershel say.


"You have to. You might not wake up for us to feed you. And you will turn into one of those-"

"I'm not bit, Santa Clause," I snapped. I heard Daryl laugh.

"We're all infected," Hershel said calmly.

I stared at him for a second and burst into hysterical laughter.

"Of course!"

I was very aware they were all giving each other weird looks. I had lost my mind. Why should I care if we're all infected? World's gone to shit anyway.

"Daryl hold her up."

Had I blacked out?

"Don't want a hill billy," I muttered.


I felt Daryl behind me, holding me up in a sitting position by my waist. I could feel him breathing in my ear. It made me feel sick. I wanted to get sick, but my stomach was empty. Still.

"Good lord, y'boney."

"Shut the fuck up, fat ass," I spat.

"Tha's not very lady like."

"Bite me."

I felt him chuckle. I opened my eyes and a woman with short grey hair was sitting in front of me. She smiled at me. I liked her already. Not sure if it was because she looked just plain adorable or she was trying to feed me soup.

A while later and the tin was empty. I felt well enough to push Daryl away from me. The group jumped when Rick came marching into the clearing pointing a gun at me.

"Aim for my head please," I asked dully.

"Enough of your shit," he growled. "Where is Carl?"

"Dunnah," I replied lazily.

I heard the gun click. I didn't flinched.

"Shoot me and I'll definitely be of no use," I shrugged.

He glared at me.

"I'll shoot you anyway."

I smirked and saw his finger tighten around the trigger. I saw Soup Lady cower behind Daryl, covering her ears.


Rick lowered his gun and turned.

"CARL!" he yelled running towards his son.

Sam sprinted to my side and I fell to my knees patting him. He wagged his tail and licked my face.

"Okay, okay," I giggled.

I looked over to Carl, Lori and Rick, realizing that I should go, I got up from the ground but Carl raced over a threw his arms around my waist. I was slightly taken aback, unsure of what to do, I just patted his head lightly. I noticed Daryl raising and eyebrow at me.

"Did you eat?" Carl asked.

I rolled my eyes.

"Yes, Carl, I'm fine."

"I told you they'd help," he smiled.

"Uh... huh."

I looked at the ground for a second.

"So... uh... Can I have my bow back?" I felt like a child asking for slingshot or something. The bow belonged to me for chrissakes.

Rick nodded slightly. Glenn handed it over.

"Seeya 'round Carl," I muttered, turning away.

"What? You're leaving?" he asked.

"Yep!" I answered not looking back. Sam trotted by my side.

"Take a bag," Rick said.

"What?" Daryl and I said in unison. Daryl glared at me.

"We don't know this girl, what if she goes back to 'er group-"

"I have no damn group asshole," I snapped.

"Carl?" Rick asked, holding a bag.

Carl nodded. Rick tossed the bag to me. I caught it and slung it onto my back. Rick nodded at me. I turned and left the small clearing.


I'm super sad because I've realized this may never get updated. It's legitimately the best story on this site

wolvesyroses wolvesyroses

Oh I really love this story. I hope it gets updated >< please update!

Gilyflower Gilyflower

This is the most amazing story ever on this site ever please update. Harleigh is amazing and you are a great writer.

reddeadwalker reddeadwalker

Amazing writing, as always.

SierraaDixon SierraaDixon

Holy crap please update!!! This is one of the best I've read in a long time!!!

elissa_mirinda elissa_mirinda