Fitting in with the group was easier than I thought it would be. For the most part, everyone was very welcoming. Most everyone was open to teaching us the ropes.
The old man from before, his name is Hershel. He is the father of Maggie, Glenn's girlfriend, and a younger girl named Beth.
Rick has a son. He's a younger boy named Carl. He seems pretty mature for his age though. Rick also has a baby daughter named Judith. Beth seems to take care of her most of the time.
There is a black woman with long hair and a long sword. She is a real tough chic. I think Michonne is her name.
There is a short-haired, middle-aged woman named Carol who takes care of a lot of the housekeeping.
Another brother and sister pair like Logan and I, Sasha and Tyreese. Apparently they were the newest people to join the group before us.
However, the most interesting person I've met here is Daryl. He never goes anywhere without his crossbow and is tougher than everybody here combined. He is a real redneck asshole sometimes but there is just something about him. It's like there is a constant battle going on inside his head between the person he once was, and the person he is trying to be.
It's been about a week since our experience in the city.
I awoke to the warmth of sunshine creeping through a crack in my tent's opening. I didn't know what time it was but since neither Maggie nor Beth were still sleeping next to me, I figured it was late enough.
I took off the pajama pants that Maggie had given me and attempted to put on my jeans while laying down. It was a struggle but I dressed myself. I put my wavy brown hair up into a messy bun and left my tent.
The sunshine hit me in the face and I had to squint at first. My eyes soon adjusted and I began walking around camp.
I could tell that some people were still sleeping, while others were already hard at work.
I walked over to Carol who was hanging clothes on a line.
"Good morning," she said.
"Morning," I replied.
I watched as Carol scanned the line for my old tank top and felt it to see if it was dry. When she saw that it was, she took it off of the pins and handed it to me.
"I washed it just yesterday. The sun warmed it up this morning," she said lightly.
I brought the tank top to my face and felt the warmth on my cheek. I closed my eyes and smiled to myself.
"Thank you," I said to her.
I then turned back towards my tent to take off Maggie's t-shirt and change back into my familiar tank-top.
That afternoon, after I had already spent the first part of the day helping Beth look after Judith, I went to go find my brother. But first I came across Hershel sitting on a tree stump reading his bible.
"Hershel, have you seen my brother anywhere?" I asked.
Hershel looked up from his book and looked at me softly.
"I think he went with Rick to practice his shooting," he replied, and pointed towards the woods.
"I think it would be wise for you to join them," he added. "Just stay out of your brother's line of fire."
Hershel smiled to himself and then went back to reading his book.
I walked to the edge of the woods and searched for Rick and Logan. I didn't see them but when I heard a faint gunshot, I followed the sound and it lead me right to them.
I found Logan standing a good distance in front of a tree with a little red target drawn on it, his gun up in ready position. Rick was at his side telling him to move his stance to the left. Logan pulled the trigger and shot the tree. Rick walked up to the target and gave a big smile when he saw that Logan had made it inside the red circle. Then he noticed me.
"Your brother is getting good at this," Rick said to me.
"It's about time one of us learned how to shoot," I replied, grinning.
"It'll be your turn next, okay Holly?" Rick said, walking back to Logan.
"Tomorrow," I replied.
Then I turned back around to walk back to camp. From behind me I could hear Rick critiquing Logan again. I heard another gunshot, and then Logan's proud laugh.
I was very happy that they were going to teach us to use weapons. I was ready to feel confident about protecting myself. But there was still a part of me that felt like I wanted to contribute in my own way.
I just didn't know what I could do to help. So far I had been a part time babysitter, and a wanderer. I had spent most of the week getting to know the group. But now I felt like I needed to do something more.
I ran into Tyreese and Sasha who had just driven up to the road's end in a pickup truck.
"Hey Holly," Sasha said.
I waved at them. They had left earlier that morning to go on a run. They left on foot so I assumed they found the car with enough gas mileage to make the trip back.
"Find anything?" I asked.
Tyreese walked up to me and let me look in his bag. I found a few cans of food and some water bottles. Also a box of baby formula.
"Excellent," I said smiling.
"We took down a herd of walkers for this stuff," Tyreese said proudly.
I watched as they walked back into camp and went to show Carol what they had found. If I could go on runs like that, then I could finally help out. I decided to pitch my idea to Rick later on.
That night, Daryl had come back from hunting and brought our dinner. He had shot a deer that needed to be skinned and cooked.
When we were all sitting around the fire, eating and talking, I went over to Rick quietly and asked him what had been on my mind all day.
"Hm?" he replied, biting into his piece of meat.
"I was just wondering... I remember how you said that we all needed to pitch in around here. And I guess I feel a bit unproductive. I was thinking that maybe I could start going on runs to get supplies from the local neighborhoods and downtown areas."
Rick took a second to think about what I said, and then with a mouthful of meat, he replied.
"First we have to teach you how to shoot. Once you are comfortable using a weapon, then you can go on a run if that's what you want to do."
I smiled to myself and nodded. I was about to stand up and walk back to my chair next to Logan when Rick said something else.
"You know Holly, we go on runs in teams. No one goes alone. So don't go wandering off, okay?" He looked up at me this time.
"Yes sir." I nodded.
I went back to my chair and finished my dinner. That night I felt satisfied. I was happy that I had found something I could do to help the group.
Tomorrow I would practice using a gun for the first time, and then pretty soon I could travel outside camp and bring back valuable things.
I couldn't wait to prove that I was useful. I couldn't wait to prove that my brother and I belonged there with them.
But first, we had to earn our stay.