Hours were spent convincing the inhabitants of Woodbury that they needed to leave, in the end Rose was the only person they'd listen to. She described, in very vague terms, being cautious of the children surrounding her, how The Governor had turned. How without warning he'd fired at the people who had supported him the most. At first they thought she was lying, siding with Heather, trying to get them to fight against the Governor. When she had finally convinced most of them it was the hard task of getting together everyone's belongings.
You wouldn't think you could accumulate a lot of things during the apocalypse, Woodbury proved that wrong. There were trinkets, bedding, even pots and pans that people were very reluctant to leave behind. In the end it was decided that they would take only what was necessary, all other items were to be left behind, either to be collected at a later date, or unfortunately left behind.
Merle had woken up a few times during this period, each time Heather forced him to drink something and have something to eat, and each time he told her 'to quit fuckin' fussin'. She continued to 'fuss' he was pale, and Heather couldn't be sure how much blood he'd lost before they found him. He had various wounds across his legs and back, cuts and scrapes. His metal arm was missing, revealing the puckered shiny skin underneath. Heather was so used to seeing him, with his arm encased in metal that he looked oddly fragile now.
The plan was a school bus, this particular bus had been in Woodbury since Heather had lived there. It, as far as she knew, had never been used. One side of it was propped up by bricks. Daryl had his head under the hood for a good few hours, he emerged covered in oil but with a quick tire change he had it running, if not smoothly, smooth enough to get them back to the
With all of Woodbury's remaining inhabitants loaded onto the vehicle, Daryl, Heather, Rick and Michonne stood at its side, so many questions ran through Heathers mind.
"You sure this is a good idea?" Michonne asked for her.
"What else can we do? Leave them here?" Rick replied, pacing up and down as the inhabitants of the bus looked on.
"I'm just saying..."
"I know, I know." He carried on pacing as a loud bang came from the bus, looking up Heather saw Merle with his hand flat against the window. Daryl made a gesture to which Merle reciprocated the same.
"I think it’s the right thing to do." Heather finally said "These people...Woodbury has been so safe for so long, leaving them would be writing their death sentence."
"You did it." Daryl replied.
"I had Merle...even when I was alone, he'd taught me so much. Woodbury is, was comfortable."
"She's right." Michonne agreed "They won't survive, most of the people who supported them are gone."
"It's decided then?" Rick asked.
"It's not up to us..." Heather looked at him, then at Daryl, who just shook his head, making his way to the bus.
Heather followed him, having to practically skip to keep up with his long strides, she left him at the front of the bus as he took up the non-envied position of driver. Making her way towards the back she could easily see where Merle was sat. Next to him was almost the only empty seat on the bus, people were chosing to stand rather than sit next to him.
"You scare 'em all off on purpose?" She asked, as he lounged lazily in his seat.
"Gotta save a seat for English don't I?" The bus took off as she waved at Michonne next to them in the truck with Rick, Tyrese sat in the back, his head hung low.
Heather sat down, taking care not to bash into Merle, being very aware of just how injured he was.
"Never been better" he said, staring directly at her.
"We'll get you straight to Hershel."
"I'm fine English."
"I'll let him tell me that."
The bus kept going, however slowly, towards the prison. Heather couldn't help but think about how close they'd all come, how quickly the world was still changing.
Finally they pulled through the gates of the prison, Glenn's confused face started at them through the windows as he held open one of the gates to let them pass, she smiled meekly at him, trying to tell him subconsciously that it wasn't all that bad, that everyone he knew had survived their trip.
Heather let everyone leave the bus before they did, supporting Merle as they walked down the narrow gangway he was limping heavily, his breath coming quickly now he was moving.
"Still fine?" She asked, as they made their way down the steps.
"Always sugar" his raspy voice came as his hand found Heathers lower back, moving lower as she shook her head.
"Hershel?" She called as the finally stood on the hallowed ground of the prison.
"He's inside." Glenn called, looking over Merle, Heather was surprised to see he didn't even look smug, even a little worried.
She dragged Merle in, he was suspiciously quiet as she called out for Hershel.
"I'm up here Heather..."
"Let me help" Daryl came up behind her, she felt his hand push Merles back as he lifted him off the ground.
Chasing up the stairs behind him she could here Merle swearing at his little brother, which Daryl ignored as he made the last few steps toward Hershels cell.
"Lay him down." Daryl followed the orders as Merle complained loudly.
Hershel ignored him as he turned on the battery powered torch, laying it down gently on the chair he'd taken into the cell.
"Merle...what happened?" Hershel asked as he moved towards Merle
He glanced in Heathers direction, a pained look spread across his face.
"You got anythin' else ya should be doin' English?"
"You don't want me here?" She asked as Hershel bent down, lifting the bloody vest off of Merles abdomen, Heathers eyes met Merles as he winced.
"Maybe it's best if you aren't" it wasn't Merle who spoke, but Hershel, as he turned he still stood directly in front of the bed, hiding anything from Heathers eyes.
Okay so this is a little weird? I haven't updated in 6 months apparently? And I decided to pick it all up again? My laptop broke, had a lot going on, then it was Christmas, then I went on Holiday...I dunno I had a lot of reasons to put it off and now I have none not to pick it all back off again :D
It may take me a little while to get back into the swing of it, I've re-read the whole of this story and I'm planning to get back and read all of Kindred just so I re-fresh myself on what's going on.
Hopefully there are a few new Walking Dead fans out there with the new series...which I have not watched.
I'll attempt to keep going...