Author's Note: Hey guys, once again I am sorry this is late, but like always when I plan to have something out on a schedule, the story decides to be difficult. I must've rewrote this chapter a total of four times-a new record I think. And yet it's still incredibly short which makes me rather mad honestly. Unfortunately though I couldn't think of where to go for here so…yeah. Anyway tell me how you feel about this chapter, because I'm still a little iffy on it. I'm kind of worried that it might be boring. If it is let me know and I'll revise.
Disclaimer: I do not own the Walking Dead, but in some alternate universe I do. I also have a pet unicorn…
Daryl wasted no time walking inside the house. The minute everyone finished their greetings and cries of relief for Mara's sake, Daryl was gone. He disappeared behind the large white wooden door, and headed straight for the room, the doctor instructed him too. Behind him, Daryl could hear the others' footsteps, however he ignored them. Right then, his only worry was seeing Mara alive for himself.
As much as the redneck hated to admit it, he didn't get a wink of sleep last night. All, because he was too busy worrying about that damn woman. So, when he heard Lori say Mara would pull through…well words couldn't express how relieved he felt. It was ridiculous. "She in this room?" Daryl gruffed, not bothering to look behind him.
"She is." Officer Friendly's voice came. Unhesitantly, Daryl swung the door open ready to yell at her. However a harsh 'shush,' silenced any chastising word begging to escape his mouth. He froze, eyes instantly following the noise. The sound belong to a familiar looking man with brown hair and matching brown eyes. Vaguely Daryl couldn't help, but compare the man to Mara. They both had similar facial structures, skin color and Mickey Mouse moles right above their collarbone.
"She's asleep." The man pointed out the obvious. From the minute Daryl walked into the room, he noticed the familiar soft snores coming from the white sheets-as well as the black tangled hair sprawled out on the pillow. After all, he wasn't unobservant like some idiots were. He simply just didn't care.
The girl had scared him half to death last night. Therefore, if you asked him, he had every right to wake her up and tell her. Though, his version of telling her, was probably not what everyone else's. It obviously involved some yelling and what not. However, it was all well deserved. "Who the hell are you? Her brother?" Daryl spat.
A small chuckle escaped the man, as a large grinned spread across his face. Those brown eyes of his sparkled with humor. It reminded him a little too much of Lil'bit. "Actually, I am." The man replied. "Easton Grayson, Mara's older brother. You must be Daryl Dixon."
Easton reached out offering Daryl a handshake, but the redneck simply stared at it. Awkwardly Easton retracted his hand. Okay, so that wasn't too unexpected. Daryl was a real anti-social character until season three, and even then he wasn't a hundred percent social. "Where the hell have you been?" Daryl interrogated.
Easton raised an eyebrow. "What?"
"You heard me. I said where the hell have you been? Leaving your sister like that-"
"First off I did not leave my sister. Secondly how dare you accuse me of that." Easton snapped, though his voice held more shock than anger. This was not how he ever envisioned meeting Daryl Dixon. Not that he ever really imagined it; that was more Zane's thing. However Easton certainly never imagined being lectured by Norman Reedus either. Let alone on how he was a bad brother.
"Then where the hell were you? Cause you certainly weren't there to protect her ass." Daryl pressed. His body stood dangerously close to Easton's. Anger radiated off of him like nothing Easton had ever seen before. If Easton wasn't so worried about getting into a fight with one of his favorite characters, he would've found it rather cool that the man was angry for his sister's sake. Currently though, that was not matter.
Glancing towards his sister, Easton tried to come up with a story. He couldn't simply just tell the truth and say they got separated when camping. It wouldn't make sense. Especially if, Daryl even had a hint of how protective the siblings were of each other. "Look, you want the truth? The truth is that I don't know how we got separated, but we did. All four of us. So, if you want to call me a terrible brother go ahead, but the blame goes four ways." Easton replied, calmly.
He held back any mentions of being a way better brother than Merle. Which was probably wise, because the last thing Easton needed was Hershel switching him up too. Plus Easton had a feeling Mara wouldn't be too happy with him either. Daryl gave him a hard stare, before turning to look at Mara. The point was made though, Daryl Dixon didn't like Easton. Only another thing Easton never imagined to happen.
"Would you shut up, Easton? I'm trying to dream of hot guys here." Mara's muffled voice came from the blankets.
Both men froze watching as Mara shifted slightly, before going back into a peaceful sleep. A smile made its way to Easton's face. It always surprised him, how fast Mara could fall back to sleep. Though he did notice a strange correlation, between her falling back to sleep and dreams of hot guys. "Jesus Lil'bit, even when shot, you're still spouting nonsense." Daryl muttered softly.
Lil'bit? Did Easton hear that correctly? Or did Daryl really just call Mara, Lil'bit? Damn, what he wouldn't do for Zane to be there right then. The boy would probably throw a tantrum about their sister's relationship with the man. Specially, if Daryl called him a terrible brother as well. Easton's smile disappeared at the thought. Mara's relationship with Daryl Dixon. His sister had a relationship with the most popular character of the show. As well as a relationship with the show's main character. How the hell did that happen? "What are you looking at Jolly Green Giant?" Daryl hissed, moving towards the door.
Once again, Easton was at a loss for words. Daryl Dixon hated him, but liked his sister. He called Easton the 'Jolly Green Giant', but affectionately called Mara, 'lil'bit.' The redneck had a pet name for his sister and displayed concerned over her. Then to top it off, all those points could be easily applied to Rick Grimes. Except for the hating part, the officer seemed to have no problem with him. Unlike Daryl did. "Hey, did you just call my sister Lil'bit?" Easton finally spoke.
"You better do a better job of taking care of your sister. Or you'll be answering to me!" Was the only response Daryl gave as he left?
A sigh escaped Easton, as he stared at the partially ajar door. Frustrated he ran a hand through his locks. "Great, getting threatened by Daryl Dixon is just what I've always dreamed of." Easton murmured, glancing at a sleeping Mara. "What's next? You going to besties with Michonne too? "
Hours passed since meeting Daryl, and the only time Easton left was for Otis's funeral. Although he had his worries about leaving Mara even then. However Easton figured he should at least pay respects to the man who saved his sister's life. Even if it was inadvertently done, because Shane murdered him to escape the walkers. After the funeral though, Easton went straight back to Mara's room. Luckily she was still tuckered out from her earlier waking. "How's she doing?" a familiar voice came.
Easton looked up from the book in his hand, only to spy Lori standing in the door way. Forcedly he pushed back the apprehension that naturally came about, whenever he saw the woman. He gave her a smile, hoping that it didn't look too forced. Though, Easton doubted it. Grayson may be good liars, but they were terrible at masking their dislike for people. "She's fine, thank you." He replied, curtly.
Lori's eyes widened slightly at the passive hostility in his voice. Silently Lori tried to recall what exactly, she could have done to make the man dislike her. Nothing came up. She barely knew the man, let alone spoke to him. In fact, the only time Lori remembered speaking to him was, when they first met. Even then, Mara's older brother seemed to hate her.
"She…she woke up earlier today." Easton mentioned, looking down. His face was scrunched up slightly, as if the whole conversation was painful for him. Which it was. If Mara were wide awake she'd point the expression out as Easton's 'I really don't want to talk to you or be nice to you, but I feel like an ass for being mean' face. Yeah, Zane and her really needed to come with better names for his faces. Or at least abbreviate them or something.
Either way, it must've did the trick, because soon Lori was smiling. She walked around the bed taking the seat next to Easton. Unsubtly Easton squirmed in his chair. Fortunately though, Lori either didn't see it or just ignored him. The second one probably the most likely of the two. "You probably know, that if it wasn't for your sister, my boy would be dead." Lori stated.
"I doubt that very much…Lori." He said, getting over his initial dislike. "If Carl were…God forbid in my sister's place, everything that happened last night would still go down. Probably even better actually. Mara would most likely take off with Shane and Otis, despite anything I told her. Or at least stayed and donated blood for your son."
His frown deepened at the thought of Mara going off with Shane and Otis. If that scenario happened would Shane kill Mara instead? Or would he still kill Otis, hoping Mara would keep it a secret? Easton shook his head at the thought. No, anyone who knew Mara would know that she didn't put up with injustice. If anything would happen it would be Shane killing both of them. "Yeah. I can see it." Lori admitted. "You know it was her, who brought my husband back to us. And I hate to admit it, but it's Mara, who has Rick's back more than I do."
Now Easton was really squirming. Sure he had to deal with girl talk before. How couldn't when helping to raise his teenage sister? However Mara's girl talk consisted more of celebrity crushes, and what problems she had with her few friends. The subject of boys and relationships with boys barely ever came up. Probably, because all three brothers would most likely scare whoever the guy was to death….still it never came up and Easton was eternally grateful for it. Which brought him to the awkwardness of having to listen about it from a woman he didn't like. Moreover, hearing about how his sister might affect a marriage accidentally. But to be fair, it wasn't like the marriage really had a chance to begin with.
"Listen Lori, I really don't think my sister is trying to steal your husband." Easton replied, not bothering to hold back his dislike.
Lori gave him a shocked look. "Oh hun, I wasn't implying that she was. I really think she is either-I mean, I shouldn't be saying anything, but your sister is going after anyone, it's Daryl. She is the only one in the group Daryl seems to be even remotely interested in."
"Yeah, I got the feeling they were at least friends." Easton confessed, thinking about the threat. Take better care of his sister. At least he didn't leave with some abusive asshole of a dad, like someone's dad did. Another sigh escaped him. This was just great. His little sister was turning him against his second favorite TV show character, in a matter of hours.
A knowing smile formed on Lori's face. "I take he had a word with you too?"
"Too?" Easton asked, curiously.
"Yup. He snapped at both Rick and Shane for letting Mara get shot, just before marching into the house." Lori revealed.
Easton let out a groan. Friendship was the first step to romance, and Mara already had two male friends. He could see where this was going and Easton didn't like it. Maybe he was overacting. Marriage between two inter-dimensional characters was illegal right? It caused too much conflict if the couple were to divorce-with kids, money, property, and what not. Oh God, he was starting sound like his sister! "I haven't seen her in two weeks and suddenly she's being chased by men." Easton muttered, "Bryon would have a heart attack if he knew."
"How did you and your siblings get separated, if you don't mind me asking?"
Easton snorted, tilting back in his chair slightly. "That's the million dollar question everyone's been asking. The truth is though…I don't know. I don't even remember much about the night we got separated, honestly."
"What do you remember?" Lori inquired.
He closed his eyes, thinking the question over. What did he remember from that night? Everything was a blur to him. It was almost as if he got wasted or something, it was so bad. And the things Easton could remember, were nowhere near helpful to him. "I remember a bunch of stupid things. Like Mara and Zane fighting over a pack of gum during the car ride. Bryon making fun of the fact that Mara packed some girlie clothes on a camping trip-she hoping to run into some hot mountain men. Or Zane pouring way too much lighter fluid in the campfire and nearly killing everyone. But nothing that tells me, how we got here."
She nodded, taking in his words. Easton didn't remember how they got separated, neither did Mara. It was more than a little stranger, and Lori couldn't help, but let a shiver run up her spine from it. How was it possible for two people not to remember anything about one night, while not being under the influence of something? Especially a night like that one. It didn't make sense. But when did anything about this world make sense? The dead were coming back to life and eating people. Modern society had seem to crumble. Her supposedly dead husband returned from the grave with a future seeing woman at his side….no, nothing was 'normal' anymore. "Well…" Lori said, patting Easton's hand comfortingly. "Whatever the reason you guys separated, I'm glad you two were reunited like my husband and I were."
"Thanks." Easton murmured. Yet another thing to be added to his list of 'I never imagined...' having a pleasant conversation with Lori Grimes. These last two days were full of nothing, but surprises for him.
"Anyway I better go check on Carl." Lori excused herself.
Easton rolled his eyes watching the mother walk out. Looks like some things didn't change, even with his sister and him screwing up the plotline. To think…he was actually starting to change his mind about the woman. What the hell was he thinking? Sighing for the millionth time that day, Easton glanced at his sister. "You're more trouble than you're worth, you know that?"
His response came as a grunt like snore, followed by kick at the edge of the bed. Other than that there was no response. Nor did he really expect one with the amount of energy Mara had this morning. That plus the gunshot wound and the stress/relief of their reunion, probably ran her ragged in a matter of seconds. No, it did run her ragged. For the second Rick left, the girl crashed hard. It didn't even take his normal amount of pressure on the small woman to make her fall asleep. She was out like a light, and hopefully she'd remain that way for the rest of the night. After all, things wouldn't stay this peaceful for much longer.
Special thanks to Dean Winchester's Play Thing, Guest, dropxdeadxjuliet,fight-before-flight, UmiNight Angel Neko,animagirl, 18, Mya Uzo, Hell Hath No,CastielDeservesAnImpala, Panpriestess, Hell's-FunnyHome, Foresthunter , jedi-stark,Pr3tTyGuR1Na3, Diclonious57, Anon, KaneCenaZombie12, melissawtf, Padme4000, Azrael Blood,RomanticBlondie, Aryiaa Bloodream, and shika93 for reviewing last chapter. You guys keep me going!
Aryiaa Bloodream: There are definitely more silly Easton and Mara moments in store for this story. Especially since Mara isn't exactly the most mature of people. As for Daryl, he did do some grouching in this chapter, but unfortunately Mara was asleep so she didn't get her earful. But rest assure next chapter Daryl will tell her exactly how he feels about the whole thing.
animagirl: Yes Easton has a pensive broody look! Thanks so much I couldn't come up with the words to describe it, when writing it. Lol obviously you can tell I'm a supernatural fan, seeing how Easton is based on Sammy. As for who she gets with, that is yet to be determined. However if she did get with Rick, it wouldn't be while Lori was around.
Padme4000: Lol, yeah Easton isn't exactly trusting when it comes to men around his baby sister. Especially men who could be potential romance interest for her. Haha luckily for him, I don't plan on Mara having anymore love interests. Anyway I should have Bodyguard update by the end of next week maybe…finals are coming up and believe or not Bodyguard is ten times harder to write than Journey Homewards.
Pr3tTyGuR1Na3: I suppose this doesn't help your hatred for Lori, huh? Lol
18: I'm glad to hear my Spanish is alright, I was a little worried about it, honestly.
Hell Hath No: I'm glad, it's addicting. I think that's one of the best compliments I ever received so far.
Hell's-FunnyHome: The emotions are getting more obvious and they'll be getting even more obvious next chapter. Lol, I wonder how long it'll take until the cat is out of the bag?
melissawtf: Yes, Easton hates Lori mainly, because his view on her character. Like Mara, Easton sees Lori as a woman who constantly needs to be supported by a man, rather than stand on her own. Which due to his parent like relationship to Mara, adds to his dislike of her, because Easton wants Mara to be an independent woman-which she really is, he just as yet to see it.
Anon: Haha I do love Kenzi. I especially am on Team Kenzi/Dyson and would totally write a fic about them, if I wasn't too afraid of insulting Kenzi's awesomeness. Though I did write a Dyson/OFC fic that I'm working on…slowly.
Hell Hath No: Shane's sudden kindness to Mara will all be explained soon. As for her brothers, that's information I'll keeping to myself for now-only because I still don't truly know who's where. Oh and Daryl will be definitely checking on his lil'bit soon.
Dean Winchester's Play Thing: I can't promise you anything, but it is possible.