|Not All Those Who Wander Are Lost
Author: Jane Willow PM
Walt is recruited by Alice - a woman as myserious as he is - and told to gather people on the list. Some, like Charlie Hume, as easy. Others, like Clementine, will take convincing. But one thing is certain - they are going back. Complete.Rated: Fiction T - English - Adventure/Mystery - Walt & Aaron - Chapters: 12 - Words: 42,001 - Reviews: 32 - Favs: 10 - Follows: 4 - Updated: 02-04-10 - Published: 01-23-10 - id: 5690457
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
"It only ends once. Anything that happens before that is just progress." - Jacob, "The Incident", season five.
Aaron's eye snaps open, his pupil dilating rapidly as the light nearly blinds him.
The back of his head screams with pain.
He tries desperately to think of where he was and how he'd gotten there. He is laying on something – something hard, yet it moves beneath him as he struggles to sit up. His hands dig into the surface as his still foggy mind works hard to find the word for it – sand.
He struggles to his feet, fighting to see past the little lights that popped up in front of him.
Staggering forward, squinting through the light that was not dazzlingly bright, but still more then he was used to, he tries to make out the dark figures in front of him.
But a sound reaches him first, a sound that is unmistakable, as if he'd heard it every day for years. Waves.
"Beach," he mumbles to himself, still staggering drunkenly over the sand, fighting for balance as the back of his head throbs.
A tall black man and a thin man with blond hair each had the arm of a very pregnant girl over their shoulders, helping her out of the water.
A woman with long, sandy blond hair is on all fours, coughing up water, her entire body heaving painfully.
A pretty Asian girl sits in front of another woman.
He struggles to make any sense of this. He tries desperately to remember who these people are, or if he knows them at all, but the pain in the back of his head keeps his thoughts sliding away from them. He looks around the beach, as the figures slowly come into focus, searching for someone else. Who, he wasn't sure, but he knew there was someone else.
The Asian girl sits facing the water, screaming desperately, though she stays with the woman with flaming red hair, who seems to be unconscious.
She was calling for him.
He drags himself forward, trying to call back to her, whoever she was, but his mouth wouldn't form words.
It's enough; the girl turns her head, stands up, and runs to him.
She grabs him as he nearly looses his balance.
"Aaron! Oh, thank God, thank God," she pants. Her eyes are wild, panicked. "I thought you were still out there! I didn't see you, I…"
She stops talking, though Aaron doesn't notice. He's taking in her pretty face, trying so hard to remember why it means so much to him.
"Aaron," she says again. He likes it when she says his name. "Aaron, you're head…"
Aaron brings his hand up to the back of his head. It's hot and sticky wet. He brings his hand back and looks down at it. Red.
Before he could put these pieces together, make any sense of them, the beautiful girl's face starts to swim before him. Everything is blurred as he feels his knees give out and feels sand again.
Then black, then nothing.