Hi Fandom Family,

I’ve decided to mix it up a bit and offer up some of my Wattpad stories here on Fridays. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I do writing them. Here’s the first chapter of a The Walking Dead fanfic piece that’s entered into the #WhatHappensNext contest. It takes place at the beginning of season seven.

+++++++ The One My Father Didn’t Kill +++++++

1 – Just Another Blood Bath

As I watch from my perch in the RV, Dad walks the line of his kneeling captives. I look at each face. I figure this is the least I can do for them — the people who live in terror or die because of what my father has become. Because of Negan and Lucille.

The ones that catch my eye are the boy with the patch. He’s safe. Dad hasn’t progressed to killing children — girls either. Why? When they can join his harem as “wives.”

I shiver. Dad was a one-woman man, or I think he was. Since losing Mom, I’m the only female safe from him. If I think too much about that, I may scream. Generally, I steer clear of my own sex these days — I steer clear of everyone these days.

The next face that catches my eye is the woman. The one with short, dark hair who they carried out of their RV on a stretcher. She doesn’t look like she has long to live. She’s the lucky one.

It’s the third face I pause on that catches my breath. His hair is a sweaty mess and hangs mostly in his face. His eyes stare at the road. He’s hurt bad, I can tell by the translucent onion-white tone of his skin. Dad pauses on him, skewing him from my view, pointing Lucille at his dejected face. And I find myself thinking for the first time, Not that one.

A strange sensation that I thought was all but gone, like soda bubbles, shoots up from my stomach into my heart.

My father passes him, moves on, and in a glimpse of a moment, the man’s eyes rise from the ground and look straight at me.

My initial instinct is to gasp and hide, pretend I’m not watching, but I can’t pry myself from the window. This man is dangerous. Probably more dangerous to me than anyone else. But I’m not scared because the likelihood of my ever seeing him again is next to my ever seeing Mom alive and well again or Dad turn into the loving man I remember. So I stay. Locked in place. Staring right back into those dark blue eyes.

I’m frozen in time, wondering if he really sees me or just his reflection in the RV window. It’s so dark, I can’t tell. I don’t notice until the blood splatters in the air that Dad’s picked his victim — his example of what happens when he’s not obeyed.

Reluctantly, my eyes tear away from the stranger. As perverse as I know the thought is, I’m glad it isn’t him. At least he has a chance now. As long as he listens to Dad. Maybe he can even escape — once he heals.

Stop, Abby. You can’t think like that . Not of him. Not of anyone. Caring is dangerous. Caring is deadly.

Setting my eyes on the scene that sickens me, I force myself to watch. To see the man my father has become. The maniac. To be glad he’d never think of hurting me, that he thinks he’s protecting me. And to decide once again to never become that person myself. No matter what happens.

The man with the red hair. The army-looking one lasts longer than anyone should. He’s strong. That, I think, is why Dad picks him. He is too strong. To obstinate to control, to be broken. Deadly. Dad doesn’t like competition in that arena.

When it’s over, I take one last glance at the blue-eyed man. He’s staring at the ground again. His shoulders rise and fall as the sobs push their way out. He cared about the red head man. He’s much better than me, and that’s why he’s going to die. Not today, maybe, but eventually. And not of natural causes.

I retreat to the couch and pull out one of the books my father brought me. I’d forgotten how much I loved Harry Potter. Now I have the entire collection, and I only feel partially bad for whoever had to give it up for me.

Deathly Hallows used to be my favorite, now I find myself venturing to Order of the Phoenix more often than not. There’s something dark and sinister in Harry I can relate to since the end of the world — the sane world. I’m on the Luna Lovegood chapter when the RV door opens.

I glance up to see what kind of mood my father is in. Sometimes killings physic him up, occasionally they depress him. But it is not my father who walks is — stumbles in, I should say. He can barely hold himself up.

The blue-eyed man’s face is swollen and wet. He takes a momentary glimpse of me. His expression is screwed up in grief. I can tell that he doesn’t care who I am or if I’m about to kill him. He’d welcome death right now.

Dad shoves him onto the couch opposite me, and then nods for me to go back to the bedroom.

I silently get to my feet. My heart beats through my chest. It’s all I can hear as I do something I haven’t done since Mom died — I pray that somehow this man will make it out of this mess alive. I can’t explain the reasons why to myself, but my last shred of hope that there is still something to hope for in this world seems to have attached itself to the blue-eyed man I don’t even know. Live or die, he’ll take that hope with him.

And that is very dangerous.

+++++++

For more of my stories and the rest of this one, you can check me out on Wattpad (@ScribbleInkwell).

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