I don't know how long I sat there, crying as Carl tried to comfort me. It could have been 5 minutes... or it could have been 5 hours. My brain just shut down, I stopped caring about what was going on around me. I wouldn't care if a zombie came stumbling at me... I wouldn't have even fought back. I wouldn't care if Casey's brother came back and tried to shoot me... I would have let him.
Everyone I love gets taken away from me. The only person I have left is the boy right beside me. Carl. He's all I have left. I love Judith... and the rest of the group... but he's the only person keeping me from going completely insane... keeping me alive.
The pain in my chest that started when Rob was about to kill me has done nothing, but gotten worse, the pain more intense. Like someone is taking a knife from inside me and slicing it through my chest... my heart. So much pain. So much death. Too much. It's all too much.
"Izzy... baby it's okay... I'm sorry, I'm so so sorry, but we cant stay here. It's too dangerous. W-we can take him back to the house and bury him," Carl says, his voice so soft it actually surprises me. He puts a finger under my chin and lifts my head up so I'm forced to look him in the eye. He brushes the hair that was glued to my face by tears, back behind my ears and sighs, moving his face a little closer to mine. His lips brush against my softly and as fast as they're there, they're gone. "I love you, okay? It's going to be okay," he says the last sentence more forcefully, more determinedly.
I bite my lip slightly, forcing the tears to stop streaming down my face, and nod. "Okay."
I know it's a lie. I don't believe everything will be okay... I don't think it ever will be... but I said it anyways. Not because I want to lie to Carl, but because I need to believe, because I need something to hold onto that will keep me going everyday... even if it's a lie I've forced myself to believe.
Slowly and shakily I start to stand up with the help of Carl's arm around my waist. For the first time I actually look around me and find that the others are all crying too... everyone loved him. My brother... he was my brother... my crazy, sweet, protective brother... and now he's gone. The boy I found in the woods, the boy who once raced Carl down the street, the boy who almost died and lost his dog to save me and Carl and the kids, the boy I could go to whenever I needed him... the boy who died for me.
That thought. That last thought sends me into a ball of anger and sadness and guiltiness. All the progress I had made with standing up fails because I fall back to the ground beside him, the tears returning. "WHY?! Why did you have to push me out of the way Casey?! Why couldn't you just let me die? I-I should be laying there, not you... he was going to shoot me... why?" I squeeze my eyes shut, tightly, and take a deep breath. "I'm so tired of people dying for me..." the last words come out as a strangled whisper, forced out through clenched teeth and streaming tears.
I stay there a few moments, catching my breath and slowly letting the tears stop. After a couple minute's I'm back to normal and I sigh as push myself off the ground, wiping away the remaining tears. I turn to see a look of pain, plastered on Carl's face, but as soon as my eyes catch his he puts on his poker face. I turn to Glenn and I don't even have to say anything and he's walking over to where Casey's lifeless body lays. I grab each of his legs in one hand and Glenn grabs his arms as we start to carry him back.
I feel a light hand on my shoulder that causes me to jump. "Sorry," Carl chuckles. "You should let me take him Izzy, you need to take it easy."
I shake my head quickly. "No, I've got him, it's fine."
Carl sighs and instead of pressing on and arguing with me he leans down and grabs one of his legs so I'm only left holding one. I don't say anything about it though because I don't want to argue with Carl right now. I just want to cry and sleep and then... get revenge. There's no way I'm going to let that shithead get away with this. He's going to wish he had never even come looking for Casey. He's going to wish he'd never met me and most of all he's going to wish to hell he'd never pulled that trigger.
By the time we get back to the house the sun is starting to go down so everyone just decides to wait till tomorrow to bury him. I wasn't surprised by the reactions we got when we got back to the house at all; crying, sadness, anger... everything I was feeling only I was feeling it 10 times more.
I don't talk to anyone when we get back and Carl follows me silently as I trudge up the stairs and kick off my shoes and fall in bed. He doesn't say anything as we both lay down and I snuggle up next to him, holding onto him for dear life. He doesn't say anything at all. And I'm grateful for that because I don't know what I could have said. So Carl was just there and that's okay because he's letting me know he cares without the words that couldn't possibly explain our feelings right now. And even though I'm so, so angry and miserable a little part of me is okay because he's there.