Jessie shot up and looked out the window of her room in shock at a sudden loud bang, which had woken her from her sleep. She usually didn't sleep in, but the last few nights had been frightening with the amount of walkers around her, she didn't sleep a wink. She rubbed her eyes a few times and looked outside the window. She blinked at the blurred figures, the man and his son who took refuge in the house next door, and another man lying on the floor.
She couldn't make out what the man looked like, and she blinked a few times trying to wake her eyes up. She sighed as she saw the man and his son carry the guy into the house, and looked around her room in boredom. She had locked herself in when the news of the walkers spread, and her mother took her brother with her and left.
Jessie had gathered up bits of floorboard and grabbed nails and a hammer, as well as cardboard boxes of the tinned food left in the house and had locked herself in her room. It was bad enough back then, but it had gotten worse. On time, she had to stay as silent as she could as she watched a walker slump in through the front door to her house.
She stayed as silent as she could for days, wondering if he had left, and sure enough she saw him slump back out of the house a few days later. Since then, she had been on high alert, watching everything that happened outside the window day by day. She saw the man and his son, with a woman who she thought to be the boys mother, run into the house next door.
She was sad to notice a few days later the mother had become a walker. As Jessie looked out the window, resting her head on the windowsill, she noticed it was starting to get dark. She kept a notebook by the windowsill, and gently picked it up, dimming the lights to a faint glow in her room and pulling the curtains to, leaving a small gap so she could look through.
She grabbed a pen and noted down each walker she saw with a line, and sighed as the whole street filled with them. She looked down at her notebook and counted 40. She knew they would be gone by morning, and there was nothing to worry about, but a sudden blaring of a car alarm set her on edge. Her hand instinctively reached for her sword - she had found it the day before the walkers arrived lying on the street.
She watched as more walkers slumped over to the car, and watched as the boys mother walked over to the door of the next house along, twisting the door knob in a pitiful attempt at getting in. Jessie sighed and rested back down on her mattress on the floor, keeping her sword close. She closed her eyes and tried to block out the in-human sounds of the walkers as she drifted into a restless sleep.
She woke up the next morning with a gasp. Her hair was sticking to her head and she gently blew on it to get it off her forehead. She peeled off her clothes and washed herself in the water she had salvaged. She pulled on her baby blue jeans and nude vest, and looked out the window. Just as she thought, all the walkers had gone except for one, who sat slumped against the fence of the next house.
She watched in anticipation as the man from the night before stepped outside with the boy and his father, a baseball bat in one hand and a mask over his face. She recoiled in slight disgust as he bashed in the walkers head, and saw him fall, clutching his side in pain. The man looked up and Jessie nearly choked on the air - it was her father.
She looked at him for a few seconds before she flung the window open. "Daddy!" she shouted, and her father looked up at her. She was 19 but always called him Daddy - he was the one she was closest to in the family. "Jessie?" she heard him say, and she saw him walk over to the house. She grabbed the hammer and wrenched the nails out of the boards, yanking them off enough to open the door and clamber out.
"Jessie" she heard her father call, and she flew down the stairs into his arms. "You're alive" she heard him whisper, and she sobbed into his shoulder. "Where's Carl and your mother?" he asked, gently holding Jessie's face in his hands. "They left" Jessie sobbed out, and her father, Rick, pulled her back in, hugging her close.
The last time she had seen him was in hospital when he was shot, and his wingman Shane had accompanied her. Jessie buried her head into Ricks chest and sniffled. "You must be Jessie. I'm Morgan and this is my son, Duane. Your father has told us a lot about you" the man from next door said, holding out his hand. Jessie gently shook it and smiled at the boy as her father walked around the corner into the kitchen.
"Come on, we're gonna go somewhere" Rick said, and Callie followed him into the car, taking her sword with her. She sat in the back seat with Duane as her father drove them all somewhere. "So where did you get that from?" Rick asked, nodding towards Jessie's sword which was in the front. "Found it. I'm not that bad with it now" she said proudly.
Her father chuckled and pulled up to the police station he used to work at. Duane held the door open and Jessie got out, smiling at him in thanks as they followed her father into the police station. They immediately walked over to the showers, and Jessie looked around for the ladies shower room.
"Daddy, is there one for me? I don't particularly want to shower with three guys" Jessie said, and her father shook his head. "Fine, but don't look" Jessie groaned, and sat under one of the showers, lathering up her hair and washing the dirt off her filthy body. She giggled as Morgan and Duane revelled in the water, and washed herself off.
She grabbed the towel her father handed her, and wrapped herself up. She wandered off to the changing rooms and hid in one corner as she tried to pull on her clothes without anyone seeing. She looked behind her and saw her father standing up, his back to her but his towel up and shielding her from sight.
She smiled and pulled her khaki jumpsuit on quickly, zipping up the army style boots and hooking her sword around her shoulders. "You look like you belong in the military" Rick said, and Jessie smiled, kissing him gently on the cheek. Rick pulled her in and hugged her close, and Jessie cuddled into him.
"Why did your mother leave with Carl and not you?" Rick asked, and Jessie shrugged. "Guess she didn't want to wait for you with me" she said, and her father pulled away. "You stayed for me?" he asked, and Jessie nodded. "Didn't wanna leave you" she said, and walked over to the gun storage room.
She hung back, not bothering to listen to the men as they babbled on about guns. "We're going to Atlanta. We're gonna go get your mother and find somewhere safe" Rick said and Jessie nodded. She headed outside, peeping her head out the door to look for walkers. She saw none and headed for the car, unlocking it and throwing the gun bag her father handed her in the back seat.
"Wait for me in here" he said, and Jessie nodded. She watched as he talked with Morgan, and she sighed a little as she waited for them. A sudden gunshot made her jump so violently in worry she whacked her head on the roof on the car. "Ow" she muttered as she held her head. "What was that?" she asked as her father hurried into the car.
"Walker" he said, and looked Jessie in the eye. "Everything will be ok, we'll go find your mother and Carl and we'll all be safe" he said. "I know" Jessie said, and Rick smiled at her. "Let's go hunting" he said, and started the engine of the car, pulling away to find what was lost.