Peaceful.

That was a description he hadn't used for a situation in god knows how long.

Everything had been chaotic, horrifying, thrilling, madness for the past few weeks.

Running from the infected, shooting the infected, beating an infecteds head in with a mini fridge door. That had definitely not been his preferred weapon choice, but it actually worked out better than he thought it would.

Pure craziness.

And now, with a clean sea breeze blowing over the deck of the cruise ship, which all four of them had been put on, a long island iced tea at his elbow, a good book in his lap, and a comfortable pool chair underneath him, he could say it was 'peaceful'.

His white suit and Italian shoes had been cleaned and stored in his cabin gingerly, deciding that khaki shorts and a button up short sleeved shirt were more appropriate for the pool side. The sun was shining very brightly off the surface of the pool water, so he had on a pair of sunglasses accompanied by a fisherman's hat (all provided from the ships gift store). To protect his skin he made sure that he was seated underneath a large umbrella (fuck it if he was going to get more wrinkles).

He had fallen into a calm state as he read, barely hearing anything around him, almost in a dozy trance. Maybe he'd take a nap after this chapter…

"'EY NICK!"

Well, there went the tranquil atmosphere.

The raven flinched a bit at the loud call of his name, looking up to see what the hick wanted. He tensed up when he saw that a hundred and fifty pounds of wet tan muscle was racing in his direction.

He didn't even have time to squawk before the twenty three year old donned in hibiscus printed swim trunks had jumped on top of him, straddling his hips and getting him absolutely drenched.

Nick's sunglasses were now very askew, nearly falling off of his face which was slack-jawed and stunned. He had a hand over his heart that was beating a bit faster than it had been before.

"God damn it Overalls! Don't do that!"

Ellis tilted his head, wet curls sticking to the sides of his chiseled jaw. His eyes were sparkling in glee, chest rising and falling with the effort of swimming and running. "Do what Nick?" He let an easy bright toothed smile stretch across his face.

Nick had tried not looking at him. He really did. Because he knew it was impossible to stay mad at the kid when he was so cheerful. And wet. And panting.

"El, get off of me, you're getting me soaked."

The Georgian laughed, leaning forward to pluck Nick's sunglasses off his face. "Why won' you come swimmin'?"

The gambler felt a tingle go down his belly from how close the hayseeds chest was to him. That chest shouldn't be allowed. There should've been a rule for him to wear a shirt while swimming. It was a health hazard. Damn it.

"Well I was happily enjoying my book before you interrupted." He picked up the novel from where it had fallen at his side to prove his point.

Ellis rolled his eyes. "Never knew you were such a book worm Nick."

The card shark shrugged, trying to concentrate on reading instead of the lean, wet, warm body on top of his.

The mechanic, who would have none of that, took the book out of his hands suddenly. "Hey what the he-?!" His question was cut short by a pair of full lips which demanded his attention.

He barely had time to reciprocate before they pulled away. "What you say to us headin' back to the cabin? I need ta shower after bein' in that chlorine." One of his fingers dragged down the front of his scarred chest subtly, playing with the sparse hair there.

Nick's confused expression turned positively predatory. "I say that's a brilliant idea."

Sure solitary peace was fine, but a little chaos every now and again wasn't so bad. Especially when it would end with him snoozing on a comfy bed with a warm hick wrapped in his arms.

For that was the most peaceful situation he could ever have hoped for.