Chapter 9: Lullaby

~Well everybody's hit the bottom

And everybody's been forgotten

When everybody's tired of being alone

Yeah everybody's been abandoned

And left a little empty handed

So if you're out there barely hanging on

Just give it one more try

To a lullaby

And turn this up on the radio

If you can hear me now

I'm reaching out

To let you know that you're not alone

And you can't tell

I'm scared as hell

Cause I can't get you on the telephone

So just close your eyes

Well honey here comes a lullaby

Your very own lullaby~

-With Isaac and Nicole-

Isaac was slowly making his way through this massive maze of a mine; it was bigger than the one in Titan and rivaled the one on Ageis 7. Isaac kept stealing quick glances at the girl he was currently holding up, fearing for her mental stability and sanity.

'Just hold on Nicole, don't you dare go crazy on me. Especially on Justin, he needs you and you need him. And even though I don't remember all of it, I will save you and get you out of here again. You and Ellie will get out of this hell hole again. And at least Justin will be with you 2.'

A little ways longer down the mines path, a roar from a group of Leapers sounded throughout the mine, making Isaac go on red alert.

'Fuck… Leapers. Dammit! They can attack from anywhere and fast. If I lay Nicole down they could easily attack and kill her but if I stay like this with her in my arms then we are both dead.'

Isaac carefully turned a corner and saw a room with its door slightly cracked open a few feet away. But as he started to edge forward, he saw a quick motion of something running up the hall in front of them.

'No…'

And soon enough it came back or another one came back and paused in the hall, staring at Isaac and Nicole.

'Leapers are here. Crap!'

There was very little time to react as the 1st leaper came charging at them.

And a shot rang out through the mine.

"This is creepy as hell! How did you survive it on the Titan Station?"

Ellie chuckled but kept her eyes straight, eats open, and on red alert for any kind of attack as well as Justin.

"I honestly don't know. But I do know I would have died on there if it wasn't for Isaac finding me."

They paused in their conversation as necromorphs came out of rooms and the vents in the hallway, making it suddenly cramped in the hallway. Ellie started to fire off her Plasma Cutter as fast as she could while Justin decided to use his Pulse Rifle on all the Slashers, Leapers, and Infectors.

After a good 10 minutes Justin shot and killed the Leaper that had Ellie down on the ground in a surprise attack, spattering the guts all over her but she didn't care as long as she was alive.

"Bloody hell Ellie! Are you ok?" Justin asked her while helping her back up to her feet.

"Dammit! They just kept coming out from the fucking walls!"

"It's the vents, not the walls. We have to shut them down, that's what Isaac and I were aiming to do when we first set off from the Medical Ward. And now, lucky for us, its on the way to where we have to meet Isaac and Nicole at."

"Ok. But are you sure we would make it in time before Isaac and Nicole got there?"

"Yeah it's in the area just above it, on the level we are currently on, the area we are supposed to get down. And there is an elevator right there that we can take to it because there is no stairs. We should be fine."

Ellie nodded and they continued on, taking out a few more necromorphs along the way.

Finally getting tired of the eerie silence of the Higan, Ellie started a conversation again, hoping to get so back story on him and Nicole so she could get to truly know them.

"So you were born on the Higan, unlike Nicole. Right?"

"Yeah. I was. It's been the only home I have known. It actually and surprisingly hurts to know we are going to lose, well lost, this place."

"I know how you feel. The Sprawl was my home, I wasn't born there, but it was the only home I can remember having before my parents died. I was saddened to see it be blown up by Isaac, but honestly, I was for the best really because I think neither of us didn't want any of the necromorphs to go out to other nearby stations and infect them. Plus the marker exploded once Isaac had destroyed it, so that also had a major hand in destroying the Sprawl."

"I take it the Higan will soon end up like the Titan Station, huh?"

Ellie took notice as to how Justin and Nicole both called the Titan Station by its name or just Titan, except Nicole probably because she lived though all the hell on the Ishimura, but she rarely calls it the for her and Isaac, they mostly call it the Sprawl because they lived on there, or she did. Isaac was more like being imprisoned in stasis there.

"Probably. I hate to destroy the station, especially with it being yours and Nicole's home. Nicole is gonna lose another home…"

Ellie didn't want to finish that sentence because it was heartbreaking to think that the necromorphs were taking away another home for her. And same with Isaac too. It was even more sad because it seemed like they were saying, "Hey were gonna blow up you home to save the other stations by you." But what choice did they have? This outbreak came fast and suddenly without a warning at all, unlike the Sprawl.

"Yeah but she told me something once."

"Oh?"

Justin paused as him and Ellie can to a cross and made sure no necromorphs were around them so they could move on.

"She said that this was her home because she had people who loved her here with her, but she changed that after our friend, Beth, died. She said, "Even if I love the Higan as my home, the home I always wanted while on the Ishimura, but with Beth gone now, as long as I am with you, I will feel at home and safe." It had just happened a few months after we started dating," he paused to help Ellie take down 2 Elite Slashers, "And I then knew I couldn't leave her alone."

Justin lowered his eyes slightly, feeling what he had felt then overflowing and overlapping with how he felt for her now, worry, love and the feeling to not leave her alone. And he whispered, "I never wanted to leave her alone…"

"I know how you feel in a way. With me knowing a lot about Isaac's past, or what he has told me, it makes me want to stay with him and help him through things. And I've even told him that I don't know what I would do if he died now. Cause without his help on the Sprawl, I would have died. I owe him my life."

"As does Nicole it seems."

"Yeah, not like Isaac would accept our lives as payments huh?"

Justin and Ellie lightly chuckled at her attempt to lighten the mode.

"Yeah you're probably right."

"Mhmm. Hey, when Nicole first entered the Medical Ward with you and saw and meet Isaac she looked scared. Do you know why?"

Justin checked his navigator on his rig to make sure they were going the right way before he answered. "Yeah, she recognized him and as soon as you said his name she knew for sure it was him. He did tell her his name when he helped her escape of the Ishimura."

"But why was she scared?"

"I know she was very shocked but she may have been scared to see him, thinking in her mind that the outbreak was connected with his memory, so she thought that an outbreak would happen again. Other than that who knows why but her."

"Yeah…" Ellie said, thinking about why as they walked up to a locked door and Justin got to work on hacking it so it would unlock and open.

'Thank god I and a technician and I know how to hack most systems. Anything more advance and we would need Nicole…'

Once it was finally open the walked in, guns at the ready, into a huge room that withheld a maze of shipping crates throughout the room.

Justin started to walk on in but still on guard until Ellie grabbed his am and pulled him back towards her and the door.

"Ellie, what the hell?"

"Stalkers."

"What…?"

"They…"

But Ellie got cut off by both of them seeing something running behind the crates near them. Justin raised his Pulse Riffle, ready to fire.

"Justin. Piece of advice. You need to stasis them to slow 'em enough to where you can shot them. Then aim for their legs, they can't run then and are an easy kill. You'll have to stasis them because I don't have a RIG."

Justin's eyes narrowed even more, anticipating them to charge any second.

"Got it Ellie. Get ready."

Both armed at the ready they took aim and fired as soon as the first one came charging and was stasised.

Isaac staggered into a small room from a path that was far from where they were just at, low on health and ammo for his plasma cutter.

'Damn Leapers! That was too damn fucking hard!'

~Flashback~

Isaac carefully turned a corner and saw a room with its door slightly cracked open a few feet away. But as he started to edge forward, he saw a quick motion of something running up the hall in front of them.

'No…'

And soon enough it came back or another one came back and paused in the hall, staring at Isaac and Nicole.

'Leapers are here. Crap!'

There was very little time to react as the 1st leaper came charging at them.

And a shot rang out through the mine.

The Leaper stopped and turn to hide while another one came charging at them.

"Shit!"

Isaac had no choice but to drop Nicole to the ground against the wall, covered her and started shooting at the Leapers taking down many. After 6 Leapers were down they stopped coming in to attack, all that were there and hadn't of run were dead finally.

"6 less necromorphs on this damn station."

Isaac's rig was flashing orange, dangerously close to red and Nicole's was now a solid orange, which was bad considering that after she fell it, was a solid yellow.

Isaac just picked up Nicole as he had he before and cautiously yet quickly down the hall, taking out some Slashers a way down the mine and taking a left turn into the controls panel area and security systems for the main.

'The main area of the mine. Or at least for this level.'

Isaac looked around the room and say many body parts laying around, no full bodies so hopefully and infector already changed the bodies and they were not in the immediate area or even created.

Isaac, in his scan of the room, saw a door to the left.

'A secluded room?'

Isaac rested Nicole against the main controls and raised his Pulse Rifle, due to his Plasma Cutter having no more ammo, and opened the door to a small room with shockingly no vents of any sort. The room actually looked clean in a way, the was very minimal blood on the walls so people must have had their attack start in here but moved out into the main area and the door shut and was never opened again till now.

"Oh fucking god! Some "safe" room finally." And he used the term safe, very loosely considering the circumstances.

He went back out to Nicole, fatigue finally setting in on him, picked her up once more, and went into the room and rested her and himself against the wall.

~End Flashback~

And that brought us to now with Isaac resting against the wall, trying to think things through with their current situation.

'How are we going to continue on? If we get ambushed again, I don't know how I am gonna protect Nicole or even myself? '

Isaac started to look around the room for any Med Packs or ammo and actually found quite a bit of Plasma Cutter ammo and Med Packs of all sizes.

'Of course they would have a lot, Plasma Cutters are used in mining and engineering and cause of the risk they would need lots of Med Packs.'

Isaac loaded his Plasma Cutter with ammo and kept some so he had ammo incase he ran out. He then used a few of the Med Packs on himself but more importantly to him, Nicole so both their RIGs were green again.

Isaac sighed and slide down the wall next to Nicole and he looked at her.

'Was Nicole showing me a true memory of me saving Nicole on the Ishimura? Let me see if I can recall anymore but first I am butting some landmines from Nicole's Line gun outside the door. We need to stay here for a moment even if I really feel we need to continue. With me having to carry Nicole like I do, we, I, need to rest for a bit, I don't wanna become too tired to where I am useless.'

Isaac launched the mines outside the door then closing it back and locking it all the while mumbling, "From one damn outbreak to another."

Once that was done, he took one last look at Nicole, who was still unconscious and twitching from whatever freak out she was having and couldn't stop.

"Please wake up soon Nicole…" he spoke to her while running his hand along the side of her face, seeing how is ever so slightly calmed her down, "You'll be ok." And he then closed his eyes to think and try to remember anything more about Nicole and saving her on the Ishimura.

'Was what you were saying really true Nicole? I don't know but I didn't save the wrong one on there.'

And her words played through his head once again, "You should have saved me, Nicole, your girlfriend. Not Nicole, the little 5 year old girl about to have her face eaten of by her mommy necromorph!" and "Then let me show you."

~Flashback~

-On the Ishimura-

Isaac was walking down another dark hallway with the lights just flickering, no emergency lights on, in the Sleep Block C Bunks sector, blood, guys, body parts and unchanged bodies laid everywhere, bodies of adults and even young children and babies. That made quite a desterbing scene to anyone but Isaac from what he has seen recently. And everything was mixed with dead necromorphs, too, of course.

He suddenly heard a really strange and unusual noise coming from the hall up ahead and to the right side that it lead to on his right. He kept walking till he can to the halway where the noise was coming from and turned the corner and at 1st glance down the hall he didn't see anything. It wasn't till he heard screaming coming from up ahead that he then picked up the pace. As he moved closer he saw a mangled female Slasher coming out of a room following a young girl, trying to kill her. But somehow the little girl seemed to be able to hold off the arms and face of the Slasher well once the girl had tripped and the Slasher pounced on her, aiming to kill.

Isaac rushed closer and carefully, as not to hit the poor girl, aimed and shot the head off the necromorph 1st so it wouldn't bite her and then 2 more shots to take off the arms and then the Slasher was dead.

He went over, but not before checking the hall for anymore necromorphs butit was clear for now, and threw the Slasher's body off of the little girl. She was still, thankfully, alive but in shock. She was covering her eyes and face, crying hard, and shaking like a leaf and when he touched her shoulder she shrieked and plastered herself against the wall in front of Isaac. She had her back pressed so hard against the wall that Isaac thought she might actually flatten against it.

"Hey…hey there, it's ok. I'm not going to hurt you. I'm not a necromorph, I am actually killing them while on my way to find someone," Isaac held out his hand to her so she could stand up, "My name is Isaac Clarke. What's yours?"

He was still shocked that this girl was still alive and very sane rather than not turned into one of the Pack necromorphs or insane. She was just scared out of her mind anf she had to be only about 5 or 6 years old.

"M-my n-name is N-Nicole."

She was so terrified that she could barely speak, but she took his hand, still crying very hard.

"Hey, how would you like to get out of here Nicole and be safe?"

Nicole quickly nodded to that so he picked her up into his arms, but only holding her with his left arm, holding her to his left side while he still held his Plasma Cutter with his right hand, raised and poised to shot.

"Where is your mother Nicole? Surely she didn't leave you here all alone."

"N-n-no. T-that m-monster trying to h-hurt me was my m-m-mo-mommy…" and she busted into hysterics, grief stricken with missing her mom.

"Oh no. It will be ok now. I've got you."

They proceeded down the hallway they were in towards the right, since that was the direction Isaac had to go in now to get to them.

"W-where are we g-going now?"

Nicole had her little tear stain face buried into his shoulder.

"Didn't I say to get you out of here? That is where we are going. Don't worry, nothing will happen to you."

A screech from an Infector was heard and Isaac quickly spotted it trying to change a man's body. He fired of 5 shots from his Plasma Cutter to finally kill the Infector and then once the newly changed Slasher came at them he quickly took off the arms and down it went back to the floor, dead once again.

"I-is it g-g-gone?"

Isaac looked around to clear the area before saying anything and once he deemed it temporarily clear he spoke, gently patted her on the back with his right hand, "Yes Nicole. It's ok for now. We have to keep moving but it will be ok. I promise ok?"

Giving the best kind of smile he could give under these circumstances to Nicole she slowly nodded and went back to burying her face in his shoulder and gripping onto him with her dear little life…

~End Flashback~

Isaac opened his eyes with a start, 'Wait I remembered what Nicole had shown me and a little bit more of what happened after. I did really save her! I hope I can remember more, no, all of what happened.'

"We should get moving."

Isaac opened the door, seeing the mines still intact but out of the windows in the control room he saw necromorphs running after some people who were still trapped in there alive.

'But not for long,' he thought with a grim face.

He went back to pick up Nicole and went back out into the halls of the mines, almost at the spot where he could use and elevator to get onto the top floor of the mine and closer to meeting up with Ellie and Justin finally.

(A.N. WOW! 9 pages already! Proves I am getting back into this story finally! Hehe and this chapter I thought would be perfect for the song Lullaby by Nickelback to be its chapter name and song. Especially since Nicole is unconscious and all and Isaac with the memory. And during that he was not asleep so don't get confused and all. And this chapter was also to get you to know Kenneth and Nicole's histories better and you will learn specifics of both next time especially Nicole's, since hers and Kenneth's do kinda overlap. PLLZZZ REVIEW! I WONT POST CHAPTER 10 TILL I GET 1 REVIEW ON CHP 8 AND 2 ON CHP 9! PLZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ! I WORKED VERY HARD ON THEM! Oh and here is a hint for the next chap and possibly ch 11: Rise Against.)