A/N: Hello readers! Thanks for reviewing, and I'm glad you liked the last chapter. Hopefully you will like this one also. Really sorry about the wait, you can rest assured that I will be updating more frequently now becuase of school starting. Believe it or not, that seems to be the way it words (I write more during school). Anyway, on to the story!
Fawning isn't really in the nature of males, especially boys. Therefore, the next day when Annie and Jack had returned to camp, after a some fascination with their injuries, most of the boys had set off to do their normal routine.
Jack was very surly while his leg healed. He couldn't do much on his own because he couldn't walk, and dependence on other people didn't suit Jack in the slightest. Piggy kept his distance from the highly irritable boy ever since he had made him angry by bringing him pineapple when he was hungry, which he didn't know Jack couldn't cut because he had lent his knife to Roger for hunting. He could get up by himself if he had something that he could pull himself up by, but other than that he was stuck. He could hop short distances in the woods, but it was impossible to move far in the woods or at all in the sand without help.
The hunters spent most of their time in the forest, doing what their title entails. Though they would go out every day, they hadn't brought back a pig since that first time, and most of them believed that this was due to Jack's absence from their ranks. Their lack of success wasn't due to lack of trying or lack of viciousness, Roger was vicious enough to make up for any need in the rest of the lot, and he made them work hard too.
Ralph was the brace in their society. He was the one that quelled fights and disputes and allowed the hunters to rest when Roger had been working them too hard. He made sure that the fire was tended to, sometimes watching it himself, sometimes appointing somebody else. He made sure that the shelters were holding up, and saw to it that everybody was healthy. They had meetings often, and everybody was allowed to speak, as long as they were holding the conch shell.
It had been a little while since the accident and, still, Jack's leg hadn't healed enough for him to walk. Their regular routine continued and on this day Jack was sitting in the sand, propped up against a tree on the verge of the forest. Ralph was in the woods trying to bring the hunters back because it seemed like there would be a storm soon and the sky was already growing darker with blackened clouds. The wind was picking up and causing the trees to rustle noisily.
It was around noon and Annie was coming out of the woods. "Hey, Jack," she called to the boy who was sitting against the tree.
"Hey," he replied listlessly before dropping his head back against the tree and heaving a sigh. She went to sit beside him.
"So, how's your leg?" She put her hand gently over his bandage.
"A little better, I guess," he said in the same limp voice.
"Do you want some food?"
"Want me to get you some water? I just boiled some earlier."
"I'm not thirsty."
"I could change the bandage if you want," she said, trying to help him in some way.
"Nah, it can wait for tomorrow."
"It'll heal soon, Jack. Then you'll be able to hunt again," she assured him, wanting to break him out of his lethargy.
He was still unresponsive.
"You'll be your old self in no time," she said as she squeezed his bare shoulder comfortingly. It seemed to help a little.
The water was getting choppier and there was still no sign of Ralph and the hunters. "I don't like it when everybody's gone for so long," Annie said, looking around almost nervously. "It feels a bit like everybody else just disappeared, doesn't it? It's really eerie, especially with this storm coming."
"Hmm," he answered noncommittally.
"Maybe a ship will come tomorrow and we'll all be home before bedtime," she tried wishfully. "You never know."
"It's doubtful," his sallow voice cut in.
"You're right, it is," Annie agreed, adopting his pessimism.
There was silence between them for a moment, leaving only the growing swell of noises from the rocking ocean and forceful wind. A drop of rain, like a single messenger of things to come, crashed down into the sand between the two. It took hardly a second for more drops to fall, and before they knew it a torrent had been released from the sky.
"Woods?" she asked him. He understood and nodded his head. He looped his arm around her and she pulled him up with all of her might. He leaned heavily on her again, just like he had the night when he was afflicted with his injury, but he was better at balancing now and they made it a little way into the woods before she settled him down next to a tree trunk.
"Ralph!" yelled a barely audible voice from off in the distance.
"What was that?" Jack asked.
"I think it was Piggy," Annie answered uncertainly.
"Ralph!" It was closer now.
"Something's wrong," Annie whispered.
"RALPH!" Closer still.
"Very wrong," Jack replied.
"I'll be right back."
She ran, paying no attention to the rain and the fact that she was completely soaked through. "Piggy!" She ran right into the boy only seconds after she had screamed his name. "What's wrong?"
"It's... the..." he gasped out, trying to catch his breath enough to speak. "I... I told them not to swim today! And the water got choppy, and-"
"What! Where is he?"
"In the ocean, not far from camp," Piggy gasped out.
"Why didn't you save him?"
"I... I can't swim. You could-"
"RALPH!" she screamed at the top of her lungs.
"There's no time! You'll just have to-" he tried to cut in as she continued to scream for Ralph.
"I can't swim either," she told him gravely.
"RALPH! Roger! Maurice! Simon!"
"ANYBODY!" Nobody answered.
"Do you think Jack could swim if we got him to the water?"
"I don't know, but we could ask him." Annie ran off in the direction from which she came, trying to get back to Jack. Piggy followed as fast as he could while still able to breathe. They soon came upon Jack who had heard their panicked screaming and was pulling himself up using the tree that she had left him by.
"What's going on?" he asked, noting horror on her face.
"One of the littleuns is drowning, and you're the only person we can find that can swim," she explained quickly as he wrapped his arm around her and they made their way, with Piggy's help, to the site of the little boy struggling to keep his head above water.
"Do you think you can do it?" Piggy asked, trying carefully not to make Jack mad.
"What do you think?" he answered over the roaring of the noises of the wind and sea. Annie helped Jack into the water, far enough in so that the swell of the wave came up to her ribs and made it hard to remain standing.
"Please, be careful!" she cried out as he broke away from her and began to swim. If his injury had an adverse effect on his swimming, it didn't show, and he didn't say anything about it.
He kept swimming and the waves got bigger as the storm progressed. Johnny must have been dragged out by the current judging by exactly how far out he was compared to his size and age.
"I don't think they should be here, Piggy," Annie yelled from where she was in the water, speaking of the littleuns watching from shore.
"I'll take them into the woods." And he did, giving one last fearful look at the little boy bobbing and gasping in the water, and the soon-to-be man swimming with all his strength as he was assaulted by the waves.
At length Jack eventually made it out to where Johnny was and, grabbing hold of him, began to swim back to the sandy shore. A massive wave came up and buried the two, Johnny came up a moment later followed directly by Jack who had propelled Johnny up before resurfacing. It wasn't long before another wave, bigger this time, brought the pair under again. Resurfacing took longer this time, but they did come up pretty quickly. They were completely submerged at regular intervals now, the time getting longer and longer.
They were finally almost to where Annie was in the water when a great surge began to grow in the distance, one that dwarfed the rest in size. Jack didn't see it, but Annie did.
"Oh no," she said as she saw it and her eyes grew wide. She quickly backed up in the water, almost falling as she did so. "Hurry, Jack!" she screamed as she continued to back up in the water. He looked over his shoulder and began pulling and kicking as fast as he could when he saw it coming. He could stand in the water now, his feet touching the bottom, but that meant little counting the size of the wave.
"Annie!" he yelled, catching her attention as the was almost at him. He pushed Johnny up out of the water and threw him has hard as he could in the direction of Annie. The little boy screamed, and landed in the water beside Annie about three feet from her. She scooped him up and continued making her way toward shore as the wave hit Jack, towering over him in size and dragging him under, violently rolling him with it. The same wave was large enough that it also engulfed Annie and Johnny, and slapped them down on the beach moments later. It receded back into the sea, leaving the three on the beach, Jack closer to the water.
Annie got up, groaning a little bit from the pain of having the wind knocked out of her so brutally. Little Johnny got up next, but Jack didn't move. Annie ran to Jack and saw that he was unconscious, she grabbed his arms and pulled him with all her might. "Johnny!" she screamed, overcoming the sounds of the storm. "If you have the strength, run into the woods and get Piggy. Go as fast as you can!" He zipped off, spurred as much by the command as the fear in her voice.
She knelt down beside him and put her hands on his stomache, as she had seen done one time before, and pushed, trying to expel the water in his lungs. A little water came out, but he still didn't come to. She could hardly remember what to do from the one time she had witnessed a resusitation, but she pieced together that she had to breath for him when Piggy come rushing out of the woods.
"He's unconscious," she stated as he came up to them.
"You have to... do mouth to mouth resusitation," he said, struggling to breath and obviously in the midst of an asthma attack from the events of the day and all the rushing around.
"Pinch his nose closed and... breath into his mouth, then use both hands to do a... chest compression... You have to keep doing that." He explained while wheezing.
She did as he said, and didn't pause at all before putting her mouth on his and exhaling. She continued for minutes and minutes before she raised her head and spoke to Piggy.
"What am I doing wrong?"
He tentatively, and almost nervously, reached out to take Jack's wrist in his hand.
"What are you doing! You can't honestly think he's..." she said with shock and horror.
"I just don't know," he told her quietly, feeling for a pulse. After a moment he looked into her eyes, still wheezing.
"Oh God, no!"
A/N: Finally done! I don't like this chapter at all. For some reason it felt really boring up until the end, but hopefully you like it. Sorry about the evil cliffie, but it was the perfect place to end the chapter, which is longer than I usually write. The next chapter is already partially written, and I won't make you wait long for it. Reviews would be, as usual, much appreciated.