I Ain't Gonna Let You Die
I stayed up all night watching for biters and keeping an eye on Merle. Through out the night, he would stir and shake violently. I would rub his arm and whisper that he was okay until he stopped and settled once again. Thankfully though, there were no intrusions of biters or any other living/non-living thing that night. Just myself and Merle. I always said he was my trashy lucky charm…
Once the sun was just peeking its way into the sky, I decided to try to wake Merle up. I poked at his bicep a bit and spoke softly into his ear.
“Merle, we need to get up and get back to camp… Daryl is probably flipping shit. We cant stay here anymore.” I whispered. He did not respond. “Merle…”
Merle’s eyebrows furrowed into an angry look and his jaw muscles twitched. He pursed his lips then barred his teeth. I rubbed his arm, trying to get him to open his eyes. After a minute of him trying to fight against the pain, he whimpered slightly. I grabbed the opiates and dumped two into my hand.
“Merle, I have some more pee-kays for you. Can you sit up for me, please?” I tried. He breathed out loudly and grunted as he forced himself up into a sitting position. He swayed back and forth slightly before steadying himself. He looked at me through half open eyes and tried to smile the best he could.
“How are you feeling?” I asked him, opening a bottle of water and putting the pills in his mouth, allowing him to swallow them.
“I’ve been… I’ve been better.” He mumbled. He blinked a few times and sighed. Merle lifted his arm shakily that was mangled the previous day to examine the now bled through bandaging. The look on his face turned from delirious to shock and sickness. I frowned and touched his leg. Merle snapped his head at me and glared.
“What?” He growled.
“Merle, let me see it.” I told him. He glared at me harder and tried to hide his arm then stand up. He struggled very hard to get from his sitting position to standing. I felt tears pricking the corner of my eyes as I watched him grow angrier and struggle more to do something so simple.
“You lost a lot of blood, you need to be careful. Don’t strain yourself!” I scolded him, then stood up and helped him to his feet. He kept glaring at me.
“Are you feeling okay enough to try and get back to camp?” I asked him lightly. He just nodded once. “Good. Now let me look at your arm.”
If looks could kill, the one that Merle had given me would have done so two times over. He cussed under his breath, mumbling to himself about how I am a bitchy nag and how I should mind my business. I shook my head slightly and took his arm into my hands gingerly when he finally offered it to me. Before, he was passed out when I bandaged him but now he was awake so I was unsure of how both of us would react. I gave him a sympathetic look, biting my lip as a stared at him.
“What?” He snapped at me.
“Thank you…” I whispered then refocused on unwrapping his wound. As I finished taking off the stretch gauze and starting to peel away the napkin gauze, Merle tried to jerk his hand away. I fought against his pulling and he slowly stopped once the gauze was off fully.
“For wha’?” He asked bitterly, clenching his teeth at the pain. I dabbed his wound softly with the wipes and he hissed at me in response. He smacked the side of my head out of defensive reflex then gasped sharply. I just flinched a bit and went back to it. “My… My bad…” He mumbled through breaths as I reapplied a few layers of gauze.
“It’s fine.” I said, trying to shake the loud ringing out of my ear. “Thank you for saving me-- us.” I looked up at him with saddened eyes.
“Hush it now, woman.” He spat, trying to sound angry and not sentimental. “Had to do it.”
“Yeah, well, still…” I tried to push the subject but he just looked away, focusing on the window that I had shattered the previous day. “Thank goodness for them killers, huh?” I changed the subject.
“Mhm.” He muttered, clenching his teeth again as I finished wrapping the stretch gauze. “It was worth it… I‘d do it ‘gain…”
I looked up into Merle’s eyes to see a mixture of physical and emotional pain. He frowned then looked away from me again, grabbing his half empty water bottle and chugging the rest. He shook his head lightly, tossing the bottle to the floor. I went to grab his shoulder but he jerked it away and began to walk slowly to the storefront door. I followed Merle then stepped in front of him, looking into his eyes sternly.
“Are you sure you are okay to get out of here? We may have to run and kill some of those dead fucks… We can stay here another night if you feel better doing that.” I told him, caressing his cheek lightly. Merle just looked at my blood stained hand and shook his head, beginning to look mad again.
“You know only a Dixon can kill a Dixon,” He started, raising his injured arm. “See? You was there… I’ll be golden. Les’ jus’ get a move on it.”
Before we had left the store, I slung the messenger bag of goodies that I had found around my shoulder and also grabbed two long knives from the kitchen for Merle and I to have for protection. We went out the door and started to run down the street as quickly but as quietly as we could. After we got a few stores away from the blood ridden pizza shop, we began to slow to a light walk, sneaking into a back alley. Merle looked around in a paranoid fashion and I kept close to every building’s wall.
Since Merle and I were both very under the influence, we had not registered just how deep we were into the large city. I assumed that it would be a quick run out of there and we’d be kicking rocks back to the quarry but it wasn’t that simple. From the looks of it, we were about six to seven miles in and a long ass walk for our lives to the outskirts of the city.
I looked at Merle over my shoulder to see if he was still close to me and I saw him looking at his wrist sadly. He must have caught me looking because his look of sadness turned to one of anger and defense. I smiled lightly at him and he just looked away again. I turned back in the direction we were traveling and bit my lip until it almost bled to fight back a whimper of guilt. I pinched the bridge of my nose hard, exhaling loudly.
Merle and I continued to weave in and out of back alleys silently for about half an hour. I stopped half jogging when a large dumpster came into view and turned to face Merle. He was a few paces behind me, heaving in a loud state. I squinted at him then rummaged through my new bag. I pulled out the last water bottle we had and extended it to Merle. Once he slowed to a stop beside me, he took the water and drank aggressively from its opening.
“You wan’ some?” He asked, offering the almost empty bottle to me.
“Naw, I’m alright.” I smiled to lightly, clearly lying and licked my chapped lips. He nodded curtly then raised his shaking hand to his mouth to finish off the water. Merle readjusted his stump to be pressed to his chest once more. I tilted my head and an idea came to me.
I took off my mock bullet belt and tightened the draw strings of my black cargos. Merle had a playful look on his face but it quickly faded when he saw that I was just going to use the belt to pin his bad arm to his chest securely. After doing that, I looked at Merle and smiled.
“Oh look at you, you Rambo redneck.” I joked. He just shook his head.
“Told ya’ you’re a damn tease…” He muttered then looked around quickly, trying to find the sound of an engine echoing through the quiet city. We looked at each other then ran to the opening of the alley.
Merle and I poked our heads around the brick building we crouched by and squinted to see what was making the noise. A not so familiar van came into view about five to six blocks down and we could see several people exiting it. I let out a quiet, “hm…” and Merle crept back into the alleyway. I soon followed suit, looking at Merle as if asking him what to do about that.
“You want to keep going?” I asked him.
“Uh-uh. I got me an idea…” He spoke lowly, shooting me one of his signature smirks. “Follow meh, sugar.”
I must apologize about that crazy delay...
Lack of adequate WiFi can ruin a person.
Here is another one for you all amazing people!
After this one, my story will be going completely into AU (alternate universe) until certain events.
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Thank you for reading!