Fortunately for Claire, she was level headed. There were zombies pounding at a metal door, shaking it's core just behind her back and in the front of the store, she could hear glass cracking. It wouldn't be long, her chest was heaving, her heart was pounding. She could either trust the stranger giving her a third way out, or be eaten alive. She'll take the chance. So, she moved her feet to a sprint, taking a leap and landing on the third bar of the ladder that led to the room. She climbed, just in time to hear the ear shattering sound of the door of he pharmacy breaking apart. There was another door that led to the back room, where she was currently fleeing but that wouldn't hold a large horde for long. There was growling and desperate moaning, starving walking dead just itching for a meal. "Fuck." She muttered, pushing at the latch on the ceiling. It obviously hasn't been opened for a while, because it just wasn't budging. Time was running out for Claire, she could hear the latch on the back door wanting to give in, but yet the latch on the ceiling wasn't going anywhere. Her arms were sore and she was on the verge of just giving up.
"If you can't get the latch open, try near the front. It won't budge, sometimes." The voice echoed around the room, mixing with the squealing of the doors wanting to break. She stopped struggling, looking down at the walkie talkie strapped to her thigh, like someone was actually standing there, her eyes wide. She closed her eyes, before actually throwing her hand up, her palm painfully hitting and pushing against the front part of the latch. It popped open and she breathed out with a sigh, scrambling up the ladder and shutting the hatch like door with a bang. Claire walked cautiously towards the edge of the building, looking down and across the town. The zombies were still trying to get into the building. The strawberry-blonde looked to where the Hummer, K-Mart and a supposed stranger was parked. They should've been hidden behind a patch of trees, but they were just at the beginning of eyebrows furrowed when she caught the stranger's eyesight. They were looking at each other and the woman looked like a warrior, standing in front of Claire's vehicle.
Now that she was out of the current predicament, her face fell. Claire wiped it of all the emotion she was feeling just a minute ago, she climbed down a fire ladder. Inching her way back out of town and when she got close to the vehicle, she raised her head high marching towards her vehicle. Just as she opened her mouth to demand who the woman was, K-Mart popped out of the passenger side.
"Claire!" She said, excitedly, looking worried. "I'm so glad you're okay." K-Mart ran towards Claire, wrapping her arms around Claire's waist and squeezing tight. Claire squeezed back, but she didn't take her eyes off the woman stranger. The stranger with light, blue eyes just stared back. K-Mart took a step back, looking between the two before rolling her eyes. "A lone zombie wandered into the set of trees, Claire." K-Mart said, slowly trying to get Claire's attention. Claire did end up looking away from the blue eyed, blonde haired, athletic and… beautiful stranger.
"You're okay?" Claire asked with worry in her eyes, laying her hands on the sides of K-Mart's face, checking for any damage. K-Mart nodded, grabbing Claire's hands and taking them off of her face before waving to the stranger.
"Yeah!" She said, laughing. "Thanks to Alice. She came just in time, then I explained you've been missing for a while and we drove up to find something… and found…" K-Mart trailed off and Claire looked up, breathing out. "Then you came over the walkie talkie and I know the only time you do that is when you're in trouble, so…"
"K-Mart, you're rambling." K-Mart breathed out, nodding. "I got it." Claire said, smiling at K-Mart before turning to Alice. "And, thanks. Really, but we should heading out, now." Alice didn't say a thing, just nodded. K-Mart let out an exasperated sigh, before actually kicking Claire in the side of the leg… and pretty hard, too. "Ow!" She shouted, glaring at K-Mart. "What was that for?" K-Mart simply pointed at Alice, who's frame was now walking away, quickly disappearing into the trees. "No. We don't know her, we can't trust her-"
"She just saved your life." K-Mart said mockingly, with just a hint of an evil smile. Claire growled out, before clearing her throat.
"Excuse me…. Alice." Claire shouted, her teeth gritting at the strangers name. It wasn't an incredibly loud shout, but Alice heard it nonetheless and turned, just her head. K-Mart grabbed Claire's hand, tugging at it and running towards Alice.
"We were thinking…" K-Mart finished, running in front of Alice. "We were headed to a place in Alaska called Arcadia, we heard there was no infection, survivors, all that good stuff. Care to join?" K-Mart nudged Claire and while Claire was being an ass, there was a thought echoing around in the back of her head, constant. Her and K-Mart weren't the only ones. She wasn't alone.
"We could use the help." Claire cut in… oh, and that too. An extra set of hands always is something that's useful. The stranger turned around, green eyes meeting blue ones. For a minute, while K-Mart looked in between the two puzzled, there was just silence both of them contemplating whether or not to go past their pride, both set of nostrils flaring in the silence.
"Alright." Alice said, softly, her voice deep. It cracked, like it hadn't been used in a while. "I heard the signals, too. It's actually where I was headed. We could combine supplies, I practically have a full tank of gas in my motorcycle. I prefer your Hummer." Claire raised a brow, looking quite proud at that fact before she stuck out her hand and Alice returned a firm handshake. K-Mart could be seen practically bouncing from joy in the background.
Without much word, both Alice and Claire agreed on the same path, they simply set out, Alice behind Claire and K-Mart on her bike, going down an eerily abandoned highway like they have been doing. This time, though, just a few hours later and Claire needed gas. She pulled off on the next exit, driving the Hummer behind some trees. Thoughts of the new stranger echoing in her mind, she couldn't deny she was happy to see another survivor, but pride was kicking her ass. She just didn't want to trust the stranger for fear of harming K-Mart, or just dying of some disease, especially the T-Virus. Neither of them needed more disappointment.
Claire got out of her Hummer, sore from sitting for awhile and from the various bruises and cuts along her arms and legs from yesterday's battle. She looked up at the oddly beautiful sunset, mocking the world's misery and breathed out. "It's getting dark. We should set up for the night." The whole sentence was directed towards K-Mart, because she forgot about Alice for a few seconds until K-Mart asked if Alice had somewhere to sleep.
"Yeah, I'll be fine." Claire just nodded, no need to worry about a stranger they just met. K-Mart was already pulling out a can of food to share and Claire was already heading into the woods. A few minutes later and she had a armful of fire fuel. The fire was lit, small, so zombies wouldn't be instantly attracted. The silence around the fire was awkward, nobody really looked at each other, Claire and K-Mart just passed back and forth a can of beans. A delicacy in these days, that is until K-Mart noticed Alice not eating. Claire noticed it too, but didn't really say anything because there was a torn, old duffel bag on the back of Alice's bike. She assumed Alice had supplies.
"You need something to eat?" K-Mart asked Alice, smiling. Alice looked up from sharpening a rather large, curved knife. It looked deadly in all sorts of ways. Alice shook her head no, before resuming her task of sharpening and polishing her weapons. Claire sighed out, raising a brow. She was eating the rest of the can, so she stood up and set the can directly on the blade.
"Eat up. It's hard to survive when you have no strength." Alice looked up, smirking before nodding.
"Thanks." She mumbled, but Claire just waved her hand before pointing to the vehicle.
"I'll take first watch, K." K-Mart looked wildly pleased, before jumping into the back of the vehicle. Claire just leaned against the vehicle, her hand planted firmly on the gun. She was expecting Alice to go to sleep, but after what seemed like forever of just standing there and waiting for nothing, both of them didn't move. They barely moved a muscle. That is until Alice looked up towards the can of beans, then up to Claire. She kind of looked surprise to see someone watching her. Claire kind of looked surprise she was watching Alice. It didn't really occur to her. Claire cleared her throat, but through the silence she heard Alice pick up the can. Claire brought down her green hat over her eyes.
"Claire!" Claire's eyes popped open, it didn't take her more then a second to jump to her feet and run around the Hummer. Almost skidding to a stop. A small horde of zombie had found them and she had fallen asleep. Claire raised her gun, inner battling later, zombie slaughtering now. K-Mart was trying to scramble from a zombie, on her hands, moving backwards in a crab like crawl. The shot went straight through the zombie's mindless skull and it fell limp. "Alice…" K-Mart panted, pointing deeper into the woods and Claire sprinted, K-Mart scrambling to her feet to follow.
Two zombies were heading for Alice's direction, both of them raving beasts. Claire raised her gun, but she didn't even need to fire a shot. In fact, her jaw dropped and eyes widened. K-Mart mouthed a wow from beside her, the exact thoughts running through Claire's own mind. Alice almost seem to propel into the sky, like a rocket before spinning, those large knife slicing right into the skulls of both zombies. The zombies plummeted to the ground, body parts scattering, while Alice gracefully landed on both feet.
"Whoa!" K-Mart shouted while Claire just continued to glare. "I never thought anyone actually knew how to use Kukri knive." K-Mart laughed. "Awesome." Claire turned her head, raising a brow, a puzzled look on her face.
"I didn't know someone actually knew what these were." Alice retorted, placing them back into their holsters.
"You should show me how to use…" Claire's clearing of her throat was loud, interrupting the rest of K-Mart's sentence. Not in a million years would that happen. She promised K-Mart, Claire would show her how to protect herself. That's it. K-Mart was the one ounce of innocence left in this world, that doesn't need to change.
"We should get going. I'll go look on the map for a town nearby to get some gas." Alice looked up at Claire, just before Claire turned on her heel and marched away. Claire didn't even get to hear Alice tell K-Mart… quietly, of course. Just like Alice knew Claire was trying to protect K-Mart's innocence that Alice would teach K-Mart when they get a chance.