A/N Imagine Daryl Dixon and Beth Greene meeting in 1958. He works in a motorcycle sales, repair and chop shop, she works at the drugstore and fountain across the street. Will these opposites find common ground? This fic is for a prompt on bethylnetwork for Bethyl AU Week.
It was a scenario that had played out every day for the past two months, ever since she started working there.
He was watching for her out of the corner of his eye, just like he did every morning at 7:45, and then he spotted her walking up the sidewalk to her job.
She worked at Ripley's Drugstore and Soda Fountain. It was just across the street and two doors up.
He didn't want to be looking at her, well okay that wasn't quite it, he wanted to look at her. What he didn't want was to feel like he HAD to look at her. But shit he couldn't help himself.
She was just so damn pretty. Her blond ponytail kind of swayed side to side when she walked, and she wore a little colored scarf tied around it. He liked that.
She looked all cute and perky in that uniform she was wearing. A red and white check dress with a little white apron, and those white bobby socks with black and white saddle shoes.
But hell, she was way too young and way too wholesome looking. He was 26 and he had no idea how old she was, but he was guessing maybe 18. Legal but still too young. Well he was just looking anyway, not touching. Shit he didn't know the first thing about girls.
Even if she wasn't too young and too sweet looking he'd still never have the nerve to talk to her.
She always tried to be sneaky so he wouldn't know she was looking at him. She shouldn't be looking at a guy like him anyway. For golly sake he was a lot older, somewhere in his mid 20's. Plus she was sure he was one of those bad boys, a tough, a person could tell just by looking at him.
His hair was way too long. What boy wore their hair that long? And the jeans with the white t-shirt and black leather jacket, those black boot things. Well all of that just screamed bad boy. And he rode a motorcycle. Everyone knew what that meant, if they rode a motorcycle they were hoodlums for sure. And she was pretty sure that's just what he was, a hoodlum.
He worked at the motorcycle shop across the street. A real rough looking bunch of guys went in and out of there. Well of course they would look rough, they were just like those Biker guys in the Marlon Brando movie, The Wild Ones. Yep, they all looked like a bunch of scary hoodlums to her.
She'd be scared to death if he ever asked her to ride on that motorcycle with him. But as much as she'd be scared, she kind of sort of wished he would, you know, ask her sometime, because she'd go.
He came into the fountain every day for lunch and she was pretty sure he had no idea who she was or what she looked like, he hardly ever even looked up. Why he never even looked at the menu, he just always ordered the same things, a cheeseburger and fries, or a bowl of chili or a ham stack, and always a vanilla coke.
She tried to be real polite and nice, hoping he'd at least glance up. Well that one time he'd looked right in her eyes when he was paying his bill, just for a few seconds and those eyes of his, oh my they were as blue as the ocean. Sure they they had a hardness to them, but it seemed to her they also had a lot of softness.
And he always did say please and thank you. Maybe he wasn't all bad.
She knew she was being so silly it's just that she had a terrible crush. Golly she wished she didn't. He wasn't the kind of boy her Mama and Daddy would ever approve of if he was ever even interested. Which she was sure he never would be.
He looked forward to lunch every day. It meant he got to get up close to her. He always sat there at the far end of the counter because she'd be down that way all the time, getting customers their waters and stuff. And that's all he was to her, just another pain in her ass customer, except worse. Shit, not only was he a redneck but he was Biker trash. He knew that.
She was so far out of his league it was ridiculous. And he knew how pretty little things like her felt about Bikers. Merle always told him, "Guys like us, we fit just right with them girls who know how to play hard, drink a little too much, laugh a little too loud. The painted up ones that wear them real tight sweaters and stick their tits right out there ta be admired. Them girls they don't mind lettin' guys like us have a little feel an a taste a them things, an a whole lot more. That's the kinda gal ya gotta be huntin' down Little Brother." And Merle would cackle like he was so funny and Daryl just wished he'd shut the fuck up.
She'd just set his vanilla coke in front of him when uhoh, here came trouble. It was that darn Jimmy. She'd dated him for a while, he'd even given her his class ring on a chain to wear around her neck. They were going steady. But he'd pushed it, kept trying to do things with her in the back seat of his car that she didn't want to do. And it was getting harder and harder for her to get him to stop when she asked him to.
Maggie had warned her if it was getting worse the day would come when he wouldn't stop. She just knew Maggie was right, and anyway she didn't like Jimmy in that romantic kind of way. She'd tried at first. When she thought he was such a nice boy, but no, those kinds of feelings just wouldn't come to her. Not for Jimmy.
Since she'd given him back his class ring it seemed he had a reason to stop in the drugstore every day. He was always trying to touch her hand, touch her arm, and he'd say those suggestive things to her like, "If you'd go parking with me up on Greenbriar Hill tonight, well I got something for you that would make you fall right in love." And he'd put a hand in his lap, and then laugh at how uncomfortable he made her.
The worst part was she knew the Biker overheard it, there was no way he could miss it. Even if he wasn't interested in her, she sure didn't want him thinking she was one of those easy girls.
He hated the sight of that scrawny little dipshit, and he could tell the guy made her uneasy. It was all he could do to hold off on kicking that bastard's ass. But he couldn't be making a scene where she worked, that would just embarrass her more, make her hate him. And man Merle would never let him hear the end of it. So every day he just got more and more pissed off.
The garage was shutting down for the night and he was just getting on his bike to head to his place. That's when he saw it. She was walking out the door of her work and she was smiling that pretty smile, at least at first. Probably happy to get the hell out of the joint. Then the dipshit jumped out of his car, went up and started talking to her. Daryl just sat on his Bike and watched.
At first she just looked a little ticked, but she began to look more and more angry and kind of shook up. Then she made a move to walk away from him, be on her way. That's when the guy grabbed her, pulled her hard toward him and tried to force her to get in that old Buick.
And that's when Daryl Dixon beat feet across that road like he was being chased by the devil himself.
He grabbed the younger man up by the collar with one hand, pointed an angry finger at him with the other, and leaned right into his face. "Back off asshole. Lady don't want ya around her no more, she sure as fuck don't want yer dirty hands on her. Ya set foot 'round here again I'ma be poundin' yer fuckin' ass right inta the ground."
She was stunned, it all happened so fast. And she was so relieved he'd come to her rescue, but oh my never had she heard language like that come out of a person. She'd never ever known a person to say that "F" word. Her face was on fire, she could feel it, and it was then he turned to her, "Ya okay Miss?"
It took just a moment for words to come to her, "Yes I was so scared. Thank you so much, um, I'm sorry, I don't even know your name."
Now he could feel redness come to his own neck, "'s Daryl. Daryl Dixon."
Even though he could see she was shaking just a little, she gave him a real nice smile and he could swear he felt his stomach knot, "Hi Daryl, I'm Beth Greene."
"Yeah, uh, hi nice ta meet ya an all. Do ya need a ride someplace?" Crap, did he really just ask this girl that? Well he did and he expected nothing better than a, "No," from her.
Before she knew what happened she heard herself say, "Yes please." Oh no, she couldn't let him take her home. Mama and Daddy would die a thousand deaths at the sight of him, and oh my if they ever heard the words that came out of his mouth, well Mama would just faint. But dang it, she'd been wanting him to notice her for a long time. And she wanted to go on that motorcycle with him.
"Where ya goin'?"
Without even thinking she told him the truth. "Well I think my folks would drop dead if I came home on the back of a motorcycle, but I sure would like to have a ride on it. I'm very curious about those things. I see you fellas working on them every day." Why couldn't she just quit talking?! She was embarrassing herself and he was surely wishing he never would have asked her.
He surprised her with a crooked little grin, "Alright, I'll take ya for a little ride, and I'll take ya close enough ta yer house so's you can just walk the rest a the way. Sound right?" He liked the way she'd been real honest with him, just told him the situation right up front. And shit, this wasn't the first time he'd sneaked around. Although it usually involved him and beer or cigarettes when he wasn't quite old enough to be messing with either. That or staying the hell away from his asshole of a father.
She was real smiley now, "Alright, gee I feel like I'm being so bad, but it's not like I'm not old enough to make my own decisions."
He stopped, looked at her real serious, "Hold up, how old are ya?"
"I'm 18." He nodded, thank God, he didn't need the law coming after him.
When they got across the street, well that was when they saw what the problem would be. If she got on the bike her dress was going to be riding way up her legs, and he knew she wasn't the kind of girl who went around showing skin. Dammit, he'd gotten this close and now he really wanted to take her for a ride at least once, before she came to her senses and told him to get his ass down the road.
He had an idea. He took his jacket off and he told her, "Okay, I'ma get on the bike, then yer gonna get on behind me. Ya lay this coat over ya, ya won't be showin' yerself then." And for some reason, when he said it, he could feel his neck and ears get red.
That was the first time she'd seen his arms and she just couldn't even believe what she saw. Why even Elvis Presley wasn't built like that. Daryl Dixon was just plain dreamy.
She was speechless and all she could do was nod.
When she was on the bike with the coat laying across her lap he turned his head back toward her. "Now yer gonna have ta get hold a me around the waist, an ya keep hangin' on. Keep yer feet there on them stirrups, don't let 'em dangle an don't be movin' 'em around. Ya just let me do the drivin' an you just keep holdin' on. Sumthin' goes wrong back there, just hit me or sumthin', I'll stop. And don't ya be be scared thinkin' we're goin' too fast, everythin' is gonna seem faster than a car. K?"
"Alright I'll do just like you say." Holy Cow when she wrapped her arms around his waist she nearly fainted right there. She could feel that he even had muscles on his stomach. He was just so manly. And gosh, he was being just the sweetest thing worrying about her and making sure she knew what to expect.
Why he didn't act like a bad boy or a hoodlum at all.
She'd had a crush on him, but now she could feel it becoming more than just that already. Well that's ridiculous she was being silly now. You can't fall for someone that quickly. Can you?
He hadn't expected to like it so much when she wrapped her arms around him, but damn if he didn't. They were small and slim, but she had a firm hold. Yeah well, she was probably just scared. It wasn't that she wanted to hold him like that. But damn, when he took off from that curb why her hold got even tighter. And what he really couldn't believe was once they got going, she just laid her blond head right there on his back. He couldn't deny he liked the feeling of that.
He'd planned on just taking her a couple blocks, now he thought he'd take her quite a bit further. Hell, he even thought he might like to talk to her some more. Well at least listen to her talk.
But after a while he thought he probably ought to pull over, give that cute little ass a hers a rest. He got to a clearing there at the edge of town and that's just what he did. He turned his head and extended a hand back to her, "Okay now, ya be real careful gettin' off, yer gonna feel unsteady. Just keep a hold a my hand an arm."
There was no denying her legs felt kind of wobbly and tingly, and her bottom was sore like she'd been riding her horse Nellie bareback all day. But she was happy and giggly, "That was so cool and so fun Daryl. Thank you so much, I loved it!"
He already missed those pretty arms around him an he gave her that little half smile and said, "Well thanks for comin' along, I had fun too. But now I'm starvin', I gotta get me sumthin' ta eat."
Well shit, now that he said that he supposed he needed to ask her if she was hungry. He didn't get all this stuff, but hell even to a dumbass like him it seemed right, so he just said it, "Ya wanna get sumthin'?"
And she said she did. The problem was they couldn't risk being seen together, someone would surely tell her folks. So while she waited he went in the diner and asked them to wrap up three cheeseburgers to take.
He rode them over by the park and he laid his jacket down for her to sit on while they ate their dinner. And even though he'd never done anything like this, bought a girl food, even talked a little bit while they ate, he felt kind of relaxed with her.
It was nearly eight o'clock when he got to about 300 hundred yards from that long driveway that lead to the farm house. He killed the engine and they got off the bike. He walked the bike until they got to the edge of that driveway. She was giving him that big beautiful smile and even out there in the moonlight he could see her blue eyes twinkling. Damn she was a beauty this girl. He'd like to kiss her, but he didn't have the nerve, and besides it wasn't like it had been a real date or anything.
She caught him completely off guard when she said, "Good night Daryl thank you so much for the great ride and fun dinner, I had a wonderful time. I hope you'll invite me to go for a ride again sometime."
The air caught there in his throat and he barely got the words out, "Oh yeah sure, an I'll see ya for lunch tomorrow." Yep, Dixon you're a real Don Juan.
She'd barely gotten a foot on the porch when the front door flew open and Mama and Daddy were both standing there madder than a couple of wet hens. "Beth Greene where have you been!"
She'd always been such a good girl, always real honest with Mama and Daddy but she fibbed like she'd been doing it every day of her life, "I was just with my friends at the record store. All we did was listen to music and dance around with each other, then we went to the diner and had burgers."
And she swore her Daddy was breathing fire, "There's a modern invention called a pay phone young lady. Did it occur to you to drop a nickel in and give your parents a quick call, keep them from worrying? I was five minutes away from calling Sheriff Grimes!"
That would have been a disaster. "I'm so sorry Mama and Daddy, I didn't mean to make you worry. I was just having fun and time got away from me. I promise it will never happen again. If my friends want to get together I'll be calling you right away, letting you know right where I am." And she gave them her very best smile and innocent look.
They seemed to calm down, thank God. She really didn't mean to make them worry. And if Daryl Dixon ever asked her to go with him again, and she hoped he did, why she'd be sure to call home and give them a good story.
A/N I hope you enjoyed it! I'll be updating next week. Comments and reviews are always greatly appreciated! xo