Disclaimer: A nod to the genius Robert Kirkman for creating this wonderfully dark, post-apocalyptic world. I do not own or have rights to any of the characters/plot of this series. I'm simply a fan indulging in my post-apocalyptic fantasies.
Thank you Nicole137137 for editing for me! XOXO
Prompt #121: Confession
Beth stoked the fire, prodding the new pieces of food with a long stick, and gazed thoughtfully at the flames. She could hear Daryl sharpening his blade on a whetstone while he sat beside her. They had their perimeter marked with twine, the plastic hubcaps from an abandoned car they'd come across after the prison fell, threaded through the string. They'd added a few tin cans and plastic bottles, allowing them a bit more security.
They had a good system going, Daryl would hunt, Beth would help him clean and then cook the meat. Then they'd eat while having casual conversations about absolutely nothing; sharing bits and pieces about life before. Beth partook in the conversations more than Daryl, and she had soon figured out that Daryl wasn't the type to reveal anything of his own accord. He'd give her short, vague snippets to appease her, but nothing of great relevance to his life. That's when she had decided to start asking him questions. If she asked about parts of the story, it made him elaborate, and she was eventually able to paint the whole picture.
He shared with her more willingly now, realizing she wasn't going to let him get away with one word responses, and she felt like they knew more about each other than she had known about most of the other people that were…had been in their group.
Beth glanced over at him. He was methodically wiping his knife against the whetstone, but seemed more lost in thought than actually sharpening the blade. She decided they had sat in silence for long enough. She needed to have a conversation and he needed to come back to the state of Georgia from whatever planet he was currently visiting.
"When's your birthday?" She asked quietly.
"What?" Daryl blinked a few times and turned to look at her.
"When is your birthday?" She punctuated each word calmly.
"In January," Daryl replied.
"What day?" Beth inquired.
"Tha' sixth," he answered.
"What year?" Beth tried to feign indifference.
She had secretly been trying to get him to tell her his age for several weeks now. She didn't understand what the big deal was. She wasn't asking him for some sort of deep, meaningful confession. She just wanted to know how old he was and for whatever reason, he flat out refused to divulge the information, which in turn made her want to know all the more.
"In tha' twentieth century," he remarked smartly.
Beth rolled her eyes, "I'm gonna' get it out of you eventually."
"You can try," Daryl smirked.
"Is that a challenge?" Beth narrowed her eyes.
"Take it as you will," Daryl's smirk widened into a semi-smile.
Beth eyed him wearily. He ignored her and inspected the blade of his hunting knife; scraping the edge across his thumb to test how much it had sharpened. It sometimes bothered her that he rarely asked her questions of his own. She wasn't sure if he just wasn't interested in knowing that much about her or if he felt like he was prying.
"What's your middle name?" Beth asked the next question that popped into her head.
"Don't have one," Daryl didn't seem startled by her randomness, having adjusted to her impromptu train of thought.
"Really? What about Merle?" She tested the waters.
Daryl glanced at her, but she made sure to keep her expression simply curious.
"He didn't have one neither," he said quietly.
"Well," Beth began, "it's not uncommon. Lots of people don't have middle names."
"Hell, I's lucky just t'get a name period," his snide remark laden with a resentful undertone.
Beth remained quiet, allowing Daryl the freedom to end or continue the conversation.
"My mom didn't much take care of us. It was always just me and Merle. Or just me if Merle was in juvie" Daryl explained.
Beth nodded, not wanting to offend Daryl by presuming anything and asking an inappropriate question when she was treading on thin ice by mentioning Merle.
"I don't put much stock in people's names anyway," Daryl finished.
Beth brought her knees to her chest, resting her chin atop her frayed jeans, and chewed on her bottom lip, "My name means a lot to me."
He stopped fiddling with his knife and looked up at her. She wasn't sure if he was waiting for her to continue, wanting to know the importance of her name, or if he knew she would eventually elaborate.
Deciding not to dwell on her thoughts, Beth peaked at him, "Beth Ann Greene. Ann is short of Annette…for my momma."
There was a heavy silence.
"I thought Beth was short for something fancy," Daryl admitted; having turned back to the fire.
Beth recognized the subtle change in his demeanor. He was worried that his previous comment had offended her. Deciding to put him at ease, she said the first smart comment that came to mind.
"I'm full of surprises," she teased.
Daryl snorted, obviously amused with her, and she was relieved her comment had taken away his discomfort.
Their conversation died, both of them staring into the fire, in a comfortable silence. Beth went back to prodding the fire and Daryl had pulled out another knife to sharpen. When he hesitated mid-swipe, she glanced at him.
"When's yer' birthday?" He asked after a brief pause.
"August thirteenth," Beth answered with a smile.
Maybe he cared more than she thought.
A/N: Two uploads in a twenty-four hour period! I'm gonna' spoil you guys! Lol
No those are not really Daryl and Beth's birth dates. They are Norman Reedus' and Emily Kinney's birthday's. Thought it'd be a fun little twist. Let me know what you think! XOXO