Not Far

Jean is subjected to a rude awakening when she parts ways with her best friend. She makes her way to Washington D.C. before finally running into a group of survivors, but is she in for more than she bargained for? Will she slowly lose her mind in this lonely world of devastation and no hope?

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14. Sleeping Beauty

   The urge to scream and cry was getting worse. He limped beside me, his arm over my shoulder. Every two moments we had to stop so I could kill another walker or two, it did help me deal with my overwhelming feelings. He lost his footing and fell, I caught him, but it didn’t matter. I collapsed beside him, bursting into tears. My entire body shook with sobs, my attempts to stay quiet only made things worse.

  “Jean… it’ll be fine.” He tried to reassure me, it didn’t work. Most would ask why I am so distressed, well… it’s quite the simple answer my droogs… we didn’t have any medicine. There was a good chance he was going to die. That fucking scratch is going to get infected… and he’s going to die. This woeful realization made me openly weep into my hands. Beside me, he sighed.

  “If you don’t get up now I might as well be dead.” He told me. I removed my head from my hands, looking over at him with a solemn look on my face.

  “Aren’t you already though?” I asked genuinely. He furrowed his eyebrows, attempting to stand on his own, clearly upset by my remark. I wanted to help him, but I didn’t see the point. What’s the difference between him dying out here or dying at home? To me, there was none.

  “Fucking hell, Jean. I’m still here, I refuse to go anywhere yet and I won’t if you take us back to the base!” He snapped. This sudden outburst finally brought me back to reality. I stood, helping him up and letting him lean on me once again. I bit my tongue, my inner cheek, anything to stop me from crying out in the emotional pain I was currently in. I shouldn’t be so selfish, however. The only one who should be openly expressing their pain here would be my dear sweet Owen, but he wasn’t. He was staying strong.  Now, on the path leading up to the gates I realized that I had to leave him. I had to open the gates and get help. I wouldn’t leave him far from the gates though, that would be stupid.

  “Help!” I called out. After a few seconds of walking up to the gates, I had to call out again. Only this time did I see a few people gathering around the gate, after realizing who it was calling for help, Edward opened it. As I got closer, I was able to recognize the others who surrounded Edward, the ones who now looked on in shock. Aphid, Arno… and Pammy. Once we were inside, Edward slammed the gate shut and dropped to his knees beside me as I laid Owen down on the ground.

  “What the fuck happened, Jean?” Edward inquired. I fought my tears once more, preparing myself to tell them what happened.

  “We were looting some cars, he got knocked over by a walker-” Everyone gasped, assuming he was bitten.

  “He killed it. He didn’t get bitten or anything like that, but he got cut by the bumper.” I explained. Owen was barely conscious, and I knew that we had to stop the bleeding. I stood as Arno picked him up.

  “Do we have any bandages?” I asked Edward. He dug into his pocket for a brief moment.

  “You’re lucky. We picked these up today.” He told me.

  “Thank you.” I thanked before nodding and rushing to Owen’s side. I held his limp hand, getting used to the feeling. I felt as if I would have to get used to it just in case this doesn’t work out. My heart ached as we walked inside. Arno cleared a table and placed Owen on it. He barely opened his eyes and I doubted that he could actually see me, but I still smiled a bittersweet smile, trying my best to show that I had faith, even though I didn’t.

  I lifted his shirt, viewing this potentially fatal wound for the first time. The gash went up his left side, and blood was seeping out of it. I took a small, white towel and placed it over the wound, holding it there with the right amount of pressure applied. I looked over at Arno.

  “Grab him, lift his torso so Aphid can wrap the bandages around him.” I commanded. Arno nodded and grabbed him, lifting him. As if on cue, Aphid began to unwrapped the bandages from the roll and wrap them around Owen. As soon as the bandages were over the towel, I moved my hand and took over. I made sure they were tight enough before tying them off. I looked around at the nervous faces around the table. Arno scurried behind me to grab Owen.

  “Take him to our room, you know where that is, right?” I asked. He nodded and walked off toward the narrow hallway. My gaze met the gazes of others surrounding me, and I felt as if I were going to break right then and there under the weight of their stares. It was obvious that they wanted to know more, but I told them all that there was to know about what happened.

  “Now we wait.” And wait we did. I didn’t bother leaving his side, hell, I didn’t want to leave his side. This all was starting to take a toll on me, yet again my world felt as if it were falling apart. My fingers were tightly laced with his, I was sobbing into the soft blankets that were draped over my beloved and the bed he laid on. There was a gentle creek that echoed from the doorway, making me raise my head slightly to see who was there and why they didn’t bother knocking.

  “Hey…” Pam greeted gently. I didn’t answer her; I didn’t want to be too loud out of fear that I would wake my beloved.

  “How’re you doing?” She asked. I shook my head, it bothered me to no end that she was asking about how I was instead of worrying about the one who was actually hurt, the one who risks his life day after day to look after these people and make sure they had enough supplies to survive; their leader. But no, am I okay? Am I okay is the question she asks, not how is he doing or anything of the sort. No. I’m more important then, aren’t I? I am not. All that matters now is him. So I stood out of shock, it was unbelievable that she would be so ungrateful and uncaring about someone who provides and looks after her.

  “That doesn’t matter. Are you not worried about him?” I questioned while gesturing to my sleeping beauty. She briefly glanced at him before looking at me again. A few moments had passed before she answered me.

  “I-I am.” I glared at her.

  “You hesitated.” I pointed out hastily. She huffed and crossed her arms before glaring at me.

  “I’m not gonna deny that I worry for you more than him.” She admitted. I gasped, quickly becoming offended and enraged by her mere presence. I turned away from her and ran my hand along the side of his face.

  “I won’t be okay until I know he’s better. I owe a lot to him. I love him.” I told her.

  “Is that how he feels? Did he tell you he loves you?” She asked. I thought about it, thinking back to our time together, everything. He’s only said it once.

  “He said it back to me. That doesn-”

  “You said it first. Jean, has he ever told you how much he loves you by himself or have you started it every time?” She continued. I looked over my shoulder at Owen’s sleeping form. I suddenly felt confused. I wasn’t sure how to react. Was I supposed to tell her that he’s never told me that he loved me? I always thought of it as an unspoken thing. It didn’t have to be said, but to Pam that isn’t enough.

  “I… I said it first.” Pam rolled her eyes and turned her body slightly. I didn’t appreciate the attitude she gave me, it was uncalled for and quite rude… and it was getting on my last nerve. He may not be dead yet, but I was still grieving. So much could go wrong here, and I am sitting here wasting my time arguing over such a stupid topic. So what? He never told me he loved me and only said it back to me, so what? As long as I knew he loved me, it shouldn’t matter. But why was I still arguing then?

  “He didn’t have to say it, though. I knew, there was a mutual understanding between us, we always knew!” I continued, raising my voice in the slightest. Pam took my hand within hers and held it close to her, staring me in the eye with a worried and sympathetic look.

  “Do you not remember anything I told you about him? What he did? I don’t know what he had planned for you when he first picked you up but I know it wasn’t because he loved you. I know it wasn’t because he was attracted to you. He had something planned for you but you wouldn’t comply, you wouldn’t bend. I don’t want you to fall into his trap, I know that he’s-” She couldn’t finish, for her blood spilt from her neck faster than the words could escape her mouth. I knew I would regret it, we all would. She was our only gardener, but I couldn’t stand to hear her speak of him like this. I knew I’d be punished for this in some way but it was worth the rush, it was worth the feeling of her blood spraying onto me as if it were water coming from a hose on a hot summer day. It was worth it.

  Her body fell to the floor with a loud ‘thump,’ and my knife with a ‘clank.’ Her shocked expression will be etched into her face until she finally turns, and I had every intention to use her reanimated corpse as a trap somewhere out there. There was no way that such a traitorous woman would be allowed to guard the very person she had talked so lowly of. He may not be awake, but I was. I was awake enough to get offended for him, to deal with such a loose cannon for him.

  After I had finished cleaning my knife, there was a disturbing, familiar growling sound that came from the floor behind me. I smirked to myself, turning around and kneeling next to the reanimated Pam. I took the rag from within my back pocket and carefully placed it around Pammy’s mouth to avoid any unwanted bites, then I roughly grabbed her arm and tugged her upward to her feet, before finally dragging her stumbling corpse down the long, narrow hallway. Everyone had to know what happens when they spoke poorly of their leader; when they try to turn others against him.

A/N:

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Owen is out cold and Pam is now dead, what else could happen to Jean in the next chapters? Well, to say 'a lot' would be an understatement. Alexandria is only two chapters away!! This means that Negan isn't too far either!

Thanks for reading!

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