Disclaimer: I don't own Pitch Black! I truly don't.

I am glad so many people love Rain and Riddick's interactions. I shall do my best to keep more great moments coming. Thank you all for reading! Please Review!

Italics = Inner most thoughts

Bold Italics =Thoughts of the 'Beast'

Chapter 14

Riddick wishes Rain didn't have such a weak heart for the others. We'd be out of here already if we hadn't let her convince us to go back for them. Twice. Damnit, don't remind me. Can we rethink this whole keeping her around thing? Riddick's beast bares its fangs and growls. Yeah, that's what I thought. Wasn't really serious anyhow.

"Anyone not ready for this?" Riddick scans the faces of those gathered round. Rain is closest to him; having abandoned the umbrella in favor of one of the whiskey bottles filled with the blue glow worms. Jack hunches close to her, sharing her light. Carolyn and Imam bring up the rear; Imam clutching the other worm filled bottle.

The group has decided to forgo the fire and umbrella in favor of the safer option of the harmless worms. Their expressions vary from fear, determination, and acceptance, but they seem to be as ready as they'll ever be. Riddick gives a signal for them to follow, and moves out.

It's slow going. Riddick drags the cells, dividing his attention on fighting his way through the mud and keeping close watch on the creatures circling them. The rain has made the ground a muddy mess that clings to the cells, weighing them down. They slow to a near crawl when they hit an incline, and Imam finally heads to the front to help him.

"It will be faster if we work together." Imam grabs the rope to help Riddick pull the cells, handing his bottle off to Jack.

They manage to move faster with both men pulling the cells, but luck is rarely on their side, and they soon encounter a new problem.

Rain nearly trips on the cells when Riddick and Imam abruptly stop. Gah! Jack and Carolyn manage to avoid her example. "What's the hold up?" She questions Riddick's back, holding her light higher to try and see around him.

"A group of them. We could get through if we timed it right, but not with the cells." Riddick murmurs.

"What does that mean?" Jack whispers back.

"It means we need a diversion, to distract them long enough to get the cells through, up that final hill." Riddick replies. "The settlement is just over the top."

We're so close and yet so far. Rain worries her bottom lip, shifting from foot to foot. What should I do? Should I volunteer to distract those things? Will Riddick even let me? Rain's mind is in turmoil. She struggles with the idea of speaking up, but doesn't want to anger Riddick again. Why is everything so difficult in this place?

"I'll do it."

All eyes turn to Carolyn. Carolyn?

"C-Carolyn?" Jack murmurs.

"I'm the captain. It's my choice." Carolyn has a determined look in her eyes, resolute. She glares at each of them, and then settles her gaze on Riddick. "What do I need to do?"

Rain stands helplessly with Jack, Imam, and the cells, as Riddick and Carolyn hash out a plan a little ways away. Is it alright to let Carolyn do this? Riddick and Carolyn return after just a few minutes of talking.

"So what's the plan?" Jack is eager to keep moving.

"I'm going to draw them away with fresh blood. A cut to the palm, after climbing to the top of the canyon; lure them out of your path." Carolyn replies.

"But you'll join us afterwards, right?" Jack sounds unsure.

"I'll take one of the bottles." Carolyn assures them. Good.

"Yeah, you can hide it until they get close, and then scare them away at the last minute." Jack smiles, handing her own worm filled bottle to Carolyn. "Sounds like a good plan."

Rain searches for some way to contribute. "Here." She steps up to Carolyn, sliding the blade and sheath from her wrist and handing it to her. "For when you get to the top." I'm glad I've kept it this long. I knew it would come in handy. Rain chews her lip, worried about Carolyn's new task. "Be safe…and thank you."

Carolyn quirks her lips in a half smile and nods once to Rain. She hugs Jack, smiles at Imam, and finally turns to Riddick. "I'm ready. Let's do this."

Riddick gives Carolyn a boost up the side of the canyon. She climbs the rest of the way slow and steady, the bottle of light shoved tight in the back of her pants, protecting her, Rain's blade in one pocket.

"Get ready to run." Riddick gathers the cells, handing part of the rope to Imam, and motions for the others to prepare.

When Carolyn gets to the top, she turns to look at the others one more time.

"Take care of them, Riddick." She calls, pulling the bottle of light from its spot at her back. She tosses it down to Riddick with a cynical smile.

WHAT THE HELL!? Rain panics at watching Carolyn vanish into the dark.

"Stay in the light." Carolyn's final words echo around them.

Prepared, Riddick catches Carolyn's bottle, then tosses it back to a stunned Jack. He ends with a solemn order to them all. "Let's move."

When Carolyn had volunteered to be the distraction to get them to the skiff, Riddick had given it to her straight; there was no chance she'd be making it through with them. She had shown surprising acceptance. Probably trying to make up for trying to kill us all in the beginning.

The plan they'd devised was running smoothly. Carolyn must have cut deep enough, because the creatures have no problem scenting her blood, taking to the air in pursuit, and leaving the path out of the canyon clear. Riddick and Imam struggle through the mud with the cells, while Jack pulls a stricken looking Rain along behind them.

You know she's going to be pissed when she realizes we let Carolyn give herself up. She'll forgive me. Who could stay mad at this face? Riddick's beast rolls its' eyes.

With much struggling, they eventually reach the top of the hill overlooking the settlement. About fuckin' time. Enough of your lip.

"Almost there." Jack sighs.

"Keep moving." Riddick replies, taking a quick glance at Rain's expressionless face, before moving forward again. Yeah, she's clocked out. At least she's not screaming; like last time. True.

It's dark…pitch black.

Rain is numb…lost…confused.

Have I been here before? The answer flutters just out of reach, like a fragile butterfly.

I don't understand…why am I even here? Why does everyone but me, keep dying?

Did I do something wrong?

Is there a way to fix this?

While Rain is adrift inside herself, Riddick is busy leading the group to the skiff. Riddick and Imam drag the cells right up into the skiff, out of the rain and mud, immediately working to hook them up and get full power. We'll be outta here in no time.

In her excitement, Jack abandons Rain outside the skiff, running and joining the men. "We freakin' made it." Jack is eager, smiling. "How soon can we get the hell outta here?"

Riddick pauses in hooking up the cells, looking at Jack and noticing Rain's absence. "Where's Rain?"

Jack looks confused, glancing behind her. "I figured she was behind me."

Riddick glares at Jack, storming past her to find Rain. We better not have lost her in the final fuckin' minutes of the run.

Riddick finds her where Jack had last stopped dragging her along, just a few yards from the skiff, looking like a drowned kitten. "Rain? You comin'?"

No response, just a blank stare. What now? Deal with it later; just get her on the skiff.

For once, Riddick follows the advice of his inner beast. He pulls the bottle of light from Rain's unresistant fingers, tosses it aside, then scoops her up and carries her bridal-style to the skiff.

He's halfway up the ramp when she starts to struggle.


A/N: So close! Why can't things just run smoothly for poor Riddick? Perhaps I should be adding 'Drama' as a genre for this fic? :) Can you predict what's going to happen next? Please Review !