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Snippet #2577948

located in Season 3, a part of The Walking Dead: Online, one of the many universes on RPG.

Season 3

"The Fall"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lillian "Lily" Strong (NPC) Character Portrait: Jessica Abbott (NPC) Character Portrait: Althea Brown Character Portrait: Ashley Valentino (NPC) Character Portrait: Gustav Schmidt (NPC) Character Portrait: Brooke Callaway (NPC) Character Portrait: Harold St. James (NPC) Character Portrait: Boondock Brannigan (NPC)
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% Jessica Abbott %


Jessica sifted through the ratty backpack, pulling out a different one of Sam's old t-shirts. It was thin enough for her to tear with her hands, which she did-- starting near the neck in thin strips. Seemed like the best way to turn unwanted memories into needed supplies. Makeshift bandages were every bit as valuable as the next thing. She slouched back against the front kiosk arranging the strips of linen in a neat pile beside her as a dull silence hung in the air. Althea paced near the front door, twiddling a crowbar in her hands-- her face still bearing the recovering scrape printed across her cheek from Lillian's shoe. The brooding woman peered anxiously through the front blinds at the street, eagerly awaiting the others.

Lily scraped at something behind the counter, incessantly. The sound only suddenly becoming audible over Jessica's own shuffling. She set down the remainder of the shredded shirt and stood up, dusting off her knees. She sidled up alongside the counter and leaned over, peering at the girl. Wood shavings lined Lily's legs as she carved at the backside of the kiosk with a small knife.

Jessica chewed her lip, unsure of what to say to the kid. There was so much she wanted to say to the girl, but no real place to start. Things had been quiet for the last few days, while they all hunkered down inside-- waiting out the dangers outside... and in their heads and hearts. It was a big loss for the lot of them... a double blow along with the previous losses from that morning. Delivered with those were the betrayals. Amidst all the chaos surrounding Sam and Annabelle's deaths, Henry broke through the last of the wall in the pet shop-- raiding all of its supplies and fleeing the complex before the dust had settled. Fortunately for the rest, neither Sam nor Annabelle ended up needing the medical supplies. But the group still felt burned. The tag-along alcoholic had been nothing but trouble since the moment they met him. Jessica felt bad for even giving the man a second chance. But hindsight was indeed 20/20. The second betrayal fell a bit closer to home when earlier this very morning, George struck out with naught but a word to anyone. Him, his bag, his gun. She knew why he went... but in the back of her mind she pretended he was going after Henry. That version made her feel less sad.

Lillian continued picking away at the wood, either oblivious or uninterested in Jessica's presence. Perhaps a bit of both. Jessica twiddled her thumbs a bit, picking at the counter with her own nails. She looked down at the girl. "Thank you..." Lily stopped carving for a brief moment-- and then resumed at an even quicker pace. Jessica grinned a little. It was a start. She walked around the counter, pulling an office chair underneath herself as she sat down behind the girl. "I never got to say thank you," Jessica continued. She ran her hands across her face-- trying to rub the sleep out of her eyes. "I don't know... if you've been thinking I'm waiting for some kind of apology... or that I'm going to punish you or something. Which couldn't be further from the truth." Lily propped her head on one arm, staring into her growing masterpiece as she casually carved away. "What you tried to do for us-- what you did do... I don't think you know what that meant to everyone." Jessica let her dangling toes touch the ground, and began to spin herself slowly in the desk chair. "The way it came about? Nobody could have wished for that... but-- we handled it. We survived. We're still here..." Lily finally stopped, rubbing away the faint beads of sweat on her forehead. She looked up at Jessica, timidly. She stopped spinning and reached over to the girl, brushing her golden locks out of her tired face. The poor thing had barley been able to sleep since everything happened. And she hadn't had a shred of normalcy or decency over the last week and half-- being passed around from adult to adult as people were killed off and went missing. It was bad enough she was separated from her parents, and now widowed to her best post-apocalyptic friend. "We are all we have..." she said, matter-of-factly. "That's something to hold onto." Lillian just looked at her, blinking her sad eyes. Jessica leaned forward, resting her elbows on her knees. "Y'know... this whole last year, I've just had these... things being stripped away from my life. Like I'm losing these layers... first-- my husband... and my house. My son..." She sighed. "The last thing I have is all of you. This. That's all that's keeping me from losing the most important thing: my mind." She looked back at her carving, sniffling a bit. Jessica rolled the chair back to get a better view and saw two large prints... headstones for the dearly departed. "They would have loved these," Jessica chimed, forcing a smile. She squeezed the girl on the shoulder and leaned in close to her ear. "But don't let Bethany see. She'll kill you..." Lily cracked a smile at that. A small victory, and a needed one.

Jessica stood, arching her back as she stretched out the last of the days aches and pains. Althea jumped to a start across the room, swiping up her crowbar as she rushed towards the windows. "That's movement," she announced, spreading the blinds with her fingers. "It's them."

"Help me with the benches," Jessica ordered, springing towards the front doors.

Althea shrugged out of her jacket and threw it to the side, along with her crowbar. "They're coming in hot!" she called out, grabbing one end of the wooden benches to drag away from the doors. Jessica grabbed the other end and the two of them sloppily tossed it to the ground. Lily was already up and behind them, preparing to unbrace the chair from the door. Jessica wiped her hair from her face and nodded to the girl, drawing her knife from her waistband. Lillian yanked the door out from beneath the handles, and she and Althea pushed the doors open to welcome their incoming friends. Several alerted walkers shambled on in the distance as their comrades rushed towards the spa entrance keeping low. Jessica walked towards the door, slowly-- hoping for good news. They needed it now more than ever.

She couldn't take one more tragic start to the day.


# # #



.: The Lost Church :.


Gustav thrust a finger in Val's chest, narrowing his eyes. "It's been three days, for Christ's sake... let the poor girl go."

Ashley shook her head, standing firmly in front of the door to the side room. "She's a liability, Gus-- you know the protocol."

"Protocol?!" Boone shouted from beside her "You fucking robot. Let the girl go-- she didn't do anything."

"And she hasn't said anything either. Until she does, she stays put." Val folded her arms, unmoved by all this nonsense.

Boone laughed, mockingly. "She's in shock, pig."

"HEY!" Val barked, whipping out her baton. "Why don't you cut the shit-talk, chief?"

Boone threw up his hands, middle fingers and all-- storming off in a huff. Gustav sighed, scratching erratically at his beard. "I understand your concerns, but we can't just keep the girl cuffed to a rail in there... she hasn't done anything to deserve this."

"Did you see the same thing I saw in there?" Val asked, heatedly. "That girl had a bite on her the size of my hand. She's a ticking time bomb."

"It's been nearly three whole days and her condition hasn't even worsened," Gustav reasoned.

"I don't know how much worse you can get then a traumatized mute with a red walker tattoo on your shoulder," Val said, rolling her eyes. "We don't know shit about this infection... we can't afford to start making assumptions now. You wouldn't let me throw her onto the street, so this is the situation we're dealing with now. And you don't have to like it."

"We don't even know if it was the priest that bit her? It could have been the dog!" Gus argued.

Val scoffed. "The same dog that was curled up next to her in a pool of the girl's own blood? Doubtful." She brushed him aside, holstering her baton. "Look-- I get that you have the whole beard going on and you want to do the whole Sherlock thing, but I do this for a living. The girl hasn't been entirely truthful with us, and until she decides to cooperate-- we focus on more pressing matters. Or did you forget that our people are missing?"

"She's right," Harry added, joining the two of them outside Sarah's holding. He placed his hands on his hips, obviously as disapproving of the situation as the others. "We need to earn this girl's trust if we're gonna get anything out of her, but that's gonna take time. Duke and them-- we have to find out what happened. That's what matters right now."

"And until I'm sure she isn't going anywhere," Val shrugged. "the girl stays locked up. I'll deal with her when we get back. Gus you're with me. Find Boone, get him a juice box or whatever he needs to calm down and get him ready. The rest will stay here in case they show. Understood?" The two older men silently nodded. "Good. How's Brooke? She need anything?" Val asked, turning her attention to Harry as Gustav stalked off on his task.

The greyed man stuffed his hand into his coat pocket and retrieved a crumpled piece of paper. "She wrote some stuff down," he replied, handing the ball of paper to Val. She began to unfold it, straightening it out. "I can't make sense of most of it. Girl stuff, I imagine."

Val smirked. "We'll try and make a stop if we find good news, OK? Just stay with her and make sure she has everything she needs." Harry nodded and mumbled and headed back off towards Brooke near the vigil. "Thank you," she added as an after-thought. She was trying to be less hard on these people, but they all depended on her to make decisions and keep them heading in a direction... any direction. They needed something to rally around. But more than that...

They needed good news.