Rose Marie Waters had been a school nurse before the world turned to shit, she had had friends, she had her parents, a nice house, and a wonderful private school for her six year old daughter Jamie to attend to. Now all she had was her blue SUV, thee suitcases of clothing, a box of nonperishable food and her daughter.
Rose sighed and ran a hand through her dark brown curls, picking off some meat from the rabbit she just cooked up and handed it to Jamie, smiling softly at her. "Just pretend it's not a bunny baby, that's what I do." She says before pulling off another piece of meat for herself and ate it, chewing it slowly making a mm sound to let her daughter know it was good, and smiled when Jamie ate.
"That's my girl." She says, and hands her another piece, glancing around their surroundings, always on edge.
Rose had killed plenty of those things now, she was used to it and she kept the shotgun she carried with her close to her side, but always out of Jamie's reach. Her first kill had been pretty intense, a kid she knew, hell a kid she even liked had come to her office for a fever, he was burning up, and his eyes had gone blood shot. She left him alone to call his parents and when she came back he wasn't moving, he just sat on the gurney, his head drooped low and let out a few moaning sounds. When she called out to him he lifted his head up lazily, his body moving awkwardly and he let out a blood curdling screech and lunged at her, she had killed him with a scalpel. Rose didn't even wait to figure out what was happening, she could hear screams coming from the halls and outside, she went straight for her car, and to Jamie's school. Luckily it was still in touched and everyone seemed to be safe, but Rose wasn't going to stick around and find out. She took Jamie home, packed everything they needed and headed straight for Atlanta like the news reporters had said, but to her disappointment Atlanta was overrun as well, and since then she and her daughter have been on the road, not staying more than a few days in one place.
"Mommy," Rose was pulled from her thoughts and she looked down at her daughter, "There's a man." She says and Rose was up, pulling Jamie up with her and keeping her behind her shot gun raised when the man walked out of the shadows. She hadn't seen him; she could have gotten them killed.
"Get out of here." Rose growled out, shotgun raised, Jamie clutched onto her leg, peaking from behind her to see the man as her mother kept her posture tense, not letting the man move any closer to them.
"I ain't gonna hurt you." He says holding his hands out, but not dropping the crossbow in his hands.
Rose shook her head, taking a step back, keeping Jamie as far away from him as possible, "I'm not trusting that mister, now you go on and leave." She says calmly now, her eyes scanning the man's posture, his face, everything about him. He was the first living person she had seen for some time, and the last time she had it ended badly.
"My name's Daryl," He says setting his crossbow down now, and slowly stood back up, not dropping her gaze. "I was just out hunting when I caught sight of your fire; it's not safe out here alone." He says his eyes moving to the little blonde girl hiding behind the woman.
Rose bit her lip and slowly lowered her gun, holding it to her side with one hand and her other hand moving to hold her daughters. Daryl looked at the two, and for some reason felt like they shouldn't be out here alone, a woman and her baby, it wasn't safe.
"Do you have a name?" Daryl asks keeping his eyes on the girl, and she shrugged, sitting back down on the lawn chair, gun to her side, and daughter in her lap.
"Doesn't matter to you, you don't need to know it." She says keeping Jamie close to her as the man walked towards them once he picked up his crossbow and pulled the strap onto his shoulder. "What is it you want Daryl? We don't have enough food to lend out, and if you try to take it I can promise you your face won't be as pretty as it is now." She says with complete seriousness, and Daryl couldn't help his chuckle.
"No, No I don't need food." He says, and glances behind him to where the farm was. "You two are actually on my friend's land; our group is just a few miles from here. It's safe there." He says, watching as she gave him an incredulous look, obviously not the trusting type. "It's not safe out here, walkers roam these parts of the field…I could talk to the man in charge, see if he minds you and your sister staying at the farm with us." He says gesturing behind him and Rose shook her head.
"She's my daughter, and I'm not sure that's a good idea." She says and stands up, leaving Jamie in the chair. "People haven't been very kind to us, and I don't trust easily. I don't want her to get hurt." She says and Daryl's lips tighten, trying to think.
"It be safer for her at the farm." He says, "We're only there until we find our girl, but everyone's friendly, no one would hurt you or your daughter." He says and Rose takes a breath, looking over at Jamie. She had her stuffed bunny in her arms, her dark brown eyes staring at the man, twisting her blonde curls around her little finger. "Shit lady, I don't care what you do but there's a little boy there, looks to be a couple years older than her, but she'd have someone to play with…and once we find the girl she'd have another friend." Daryl says growing a little impatient at the woman.
"Mommy can we go please?" She begs standing, dragging her rabbit behind her, her little hand pulling on Rose's shirt, "Please mommy, I miss having friends." Rose stares down at her daughter, and sighs nodding slowly.
"Fine…Okay." She says and turns to look at Daryl as Jamie grins and claps happily. Rose walks over to Daryl, and jabs her finger into his chest, getting close to his face. "I swear to god if you are leading my daughter and me into a trap I will kill you." She says in a low growl, and Daryl only shakes his head looking down at the small girl, she was at least a foot shorter than him.
"I don't trick me lady, now get your things together, we can come back for the rest in the mornin'." He says not moving or looking away from her, and Rose nods stepping away, thinking to herself that maybe, just maybe this was her chance to give her daughter something normal in this shit world.