There wasn't much to do between now and their mid-day meeting. Heather busied herself, bringing any of the things she may need into Merles cell so she could stay there while he recovered. While she did this Merle didn't stop complaining. He hated being useless, especially he hated doing nothing.
Merle could not sit still, he was always shuffling about, sitting up and lying back down again for something to do.
"You want a book?" She asked.
"Non of that sci-fi shit, you're worse than Carl."
Heather just sighed.
"Rick's holding a meeting later."
"Officer Friendly still the appointed leader then?"
"Yeah, yeah he is."
Merle didn't say anything, but his face remained annoyed and unimpressed.
"We're going to try and get a group together to go out tomorrow, we need supplies."
"I know, I know I ain't allowed to go."
Heather almost laughed "We wouldn't want you there Merle, how are you gonna save me from a walker when you can't put your own socks on."
"Yeah, Me, Daryl, Glenn, Maggie, hopefully a couple of the tougher guys from Woodbury."
"Why'd ya need to go?"
"Need to? I volunteered."
Merle just grumbled to himself.
"You don't want me to go?"
"I just don't want ya gettin' hurt."
"Daryl will be there."
"I can protect myself you know? I was out there, on my own, for two weeks after Woodbury."
Merle didn't answer this, he turned in his bed, staring at the wall instead of engaging in conversation further.
Great, Heather thought, she really wasn't in the mood to look after a surly Merle. After about twenty minutes of trying to ignore Merle and carry on making the cell more liveable for two, she gave up. Sighing heavily she took one more look at Merles back, hoping he was actually sleeping and not just pretending she left the cell.
"You going down for the meeting?" She heard from behind her.
Heather turned, it was Lisa. The girl looked younger than Heather remembered from Woodbury, or maybe it was just that she wasn't wearing the disdainful look she normally had on her face when talking to Heather.
"Yeah, yeah I am..." Heather didn't know what to say. When she had been at Woodbury her and Lisa had hardly been best friends, however, she knew what it felt like to feel out of place, and in someone else's 'territory'. "You wanna sit with me?"
Heather chided herself, she sounded like a teenager.
"Yes! Please, I mean, thank you."
"S'okay..." Heather carried on walking, checking behind her as they both went down the stairs.
"Is Merle okay?"
"He will be...just need to keep him chained to the bed." Lisa laughed, a noise Heather didn't
think she'd heard before.
Thankfully, Heather spotted Rose and Tilly at a practically empty table, leading Lisa over, she could read the confused look on Rose's face when she saw who Heather was with. Heather tried her best to tell Rose that she'd explain later with her eyes, sure she just looked unhinged.
"You all getting settled?"
"Oh Heather it's so strange, being here, in a..." she lowered her voice now "prison."
Heather laughed "You get used to it."
"I'm not complaining, it's just..." Rose was about to say something when Hershel joined them.
"Creepy?" He finished, sounding offended.
Rose looked mortified.
Heather just laughed along with Hershel while Rose tried to back track.
"It's okay Rose...he's messing with you."
"Rose, Tilly, Lisa, this is Hershel, Hershel...well you know their names. Tilly here is the smartest kid in Woodbury."
"Nice ta meet y'all." He settled himself at the table, making Heather smile. She was worried, apart from Michonne and Merle (who Heather wasn't sure counted), Tyrese and Sasha,
Heather was the only very tenuous link between the residence of Woodbury, and those of the jail. She would understand the animosity on both parties. The occupants of Woodbury had it drilled into them that the prison was a threat to their survival, that Rick, along with all of the other occupants, were going to attack and pillage their town. Where as the group at the prison knew what The Governor was really like, and how he had convinced a lot of his town to storm the prison, with every intention of taking out as many of them as possible.
She was realising now that a lot of her worries were for nothing. Hershel and Rose were talking now, swapping top tips for 'natural pain relief'. Lisa however was sat in silence, her eyes following every new person that came in to join them.
"Are you bunking with someone Lisa or did you get your own room?"
"You mean cell?" She spat, before practically covering her mouth, a few of the people sitting around her shooting her dirty looks.
"I...I'm on my own."
"Figures." It came from behind Heather, she instantly recognised the voice and cringed, she really didn't want to have to deal with a fight between Merle and a 20 something year old girl right now.
"How'd you get down her.." She asked before turning, Merle, supported by Daryl, made his way into her peripheral vison.
"Couldn't miss the Queens speech right English? It's tradition."
Heather glared at Daryl, blaming him for Merles appearance, sure he'd be more than happy to heckle. Daryl just shrugged before pulling out a seat for Merle, sitting him down gently before sitting behind him.
Luckily it wasn't too long before Rick stood at the front of the group, it had grown now to what Heather felt was massive proportions, she'd never seen all of them together, now it seemed manic.
"Thank ya'll..." Rick tried to say, realising he wasn't quite getting to the back row, he stood on a chair, looking uncomfortable. "Thanks...for coming, this ain't easy, I know a lot of y'all are still uneasy about bein' here, but I assure you we're all invested in this." He took a sweeping look around the prison, Heather tried to give him a reassuring look she was sure he didn't see.
The meeting went on...and on. Heather could feel herself getting stiff as Rick laid out plans, rules and tried to get a good idea of who he was dealing with. By the end of it she was sure he'd made himself a few fans, Merle was as far as Heather could hear, the only one grumbling. But every time he did a sharp look from Heather and a quick kick of his chair legs from Daryl and he soon shut up.
"This is by no means a dictatorship, I ain't looking to be A number one here, Hershel is lead of council here now, along with Daryl, Sasha, Carol and Glenn. They are the real decision makers here, I'm just the puppet." He smiled "We gotta make this work, anything you can do to help would be greatly appreciated."
With this, Rick gave a small, self-conscious wave, stepping down off of the seat, someone behind Heather started to clap, soon enough the whole prison was filled with the sound. Rick looked embarrassed. Trying to help Glenn stood up next to him, not long the whole council were up there too minus Daryl. Heather looked towards him, smiling as he shook his head.
"Go on Daryl, you’re a huge part of this."
"I ain'tlookin' for applause."
"S'right...this is all bullshit."
"Merle, shut the fuck up. Daryl, go up there...Rick needs you." Daryl gave a wary look at Merle. Heather stepped in for Daryl, kicking the leg of his chair, distracting him from giving Daryl the death stare.
Daryl slowly and quietly shuffled up to the group, standing uncomfortably at the side.
Once they were back in the cell Heather couldn’t shut Merle up. He wasn't happy, not at all, but for what reason Heather couldn't really grasp, from what she could tell he was jealous, but she'd never say that to him.
They spent the evening in the cell, Heather not wanting to force Merles bad mood on the rest of the prison. Daryl joined them, and after a good half an hour of chiding Daryl for being fame hungry, it all blew over. Heather enjoyed spending time with the Dixon brothers, Merles laughter was infectious, even if his jokes weren't.
"I'll be callin' it a night." Daryl said, taking the dishes and mugs they'd used. Ya get a good night's sleep Heather...s'gonna be a long day tomorrow."
Heather nodded and wished him goodnight, Merle looked surly but didn't say anything. As they both got ready to turn in Heathers eyes roamed over Merles various wounds and bruises.
"I'll be fine English...s'long as you're here, s'long as ya safe. I'll be fine."
Merle did something now he generally avoided doing, he reached out to her, lifted her head so her eyes met his.
"Ya can do that for me?"
"I promise if you do."
"Promise." He said, his head ducking slightly, pulling Heather in as he enveloped her in a hug. He was still shirtless, she could feel the scars and stitches under her fingers and she reached her hands to meet across his back.
It was over so quickly, Merle turned back to his cot, grabbing his vest, leaving Heather standing in the middle of the cell trying to catch her breath.
Just a warning, I know I got this chapter up super quick but its just kinda a filler chapter (sorry not sorry as I love writting all these little interactions between Heather/The Group/Merle)
BUT these 'fillers' are crucial for my BRAIN, as the next chapter fingers crossed is gonna be FUN I'm excited to play around with all of the time I have between series 3-4 I cant remember how long that time period is (I used to have such a good online timeline I followed but I have lost the link) but I'm gonna hazard a guess AT LEAST a month!!
Is there any suggestions as to what you'd like to happen? I'm all ears :D
Thank you SO SO much for the comments they keep my fingers tapping