I DON'T own the rights to ANYTHING, this is purely a fan-made story and is not to be considered anything but that. All rights belong to the creators of the Walking dead, the directors, and all the rights owners to the Walking Dead. Any credit for any parts of the series should go to these people and not to me, I'm just a fan who wants to share entirely made up plots within an already amazing story and world.

Me Before Them

Part 6 + 7

Three days, they’d kept me down here and those three fucking days were all I could think about as I tried to ward off the headache swirling around inside my head. Three days without water, without food. The black man, Joseph was his name. Jo for short, He had said this is what they’d been doing to him for the past month, that they’d come to feed him every third day. Let him go and wash in the ocean. He told me I was unlucky because I’d been brought in on the day he’d been last fed. As much as I could use the meal I looked forward to the clean, these past three days had taken their toll on me like never before. I’d been throwing up and shitting out liquids since the first day I’d been locked in here. Jo was the same, soiled and stinking in his track pants. I couldn’t feel my hands tied behind my back. They’d used some sort of tie that tightened the more you struggled; my hands seemed to pulsate every now and then so blood was still getting to them. I leaned my head against the pole behind me; it was cold to touch and did little to calm my headache. I shut my eyes and fell to sleep again, it was all there was to do.

A little while later I was woken via a kick to my leg. Above me stood the man who’d driven me here in the beach buggy. He wore the same leather jacket. Flanking his sides were the same two hooded boys who’d been hanging off it the back of the vehicle when he’d arrived three days prior. I remember he looked a bit upset that the man I’d killed. Gill, I think his name was. It was hard to recall with the throbbing in my head.

“Stand up.” He said as a stern look swept across his face.

As stern as he looked I could tell he was trying ever so hard to not breathe in through his nostrils. Not that I could blame him, the stench in here was... revolting. I’d grown somewhat used to it but every now and then it’d get in my nose and make me gag and choke. Sometimes it’d trigger heaves of nonexistent fluids from my body in heaving wails of agony.

I stood with the aid of the pole behind me. My head began spinning almost instantaneously. Everything in the room hurt my eyes so I had to shut them to stifle the pain. I leant against the pole and the man walked behind me. He cut one of the ties that bound my wrists. Then another and I almost forgot my headache. The relief of rubbing my wrists was heavenly. I looked around the still mildly spinning room; my hands tingled as the blood flowed back into them. Jo was taken down; he’d been a little less lucky in the way they’d bound him. His arms had been tied above his head by the same type of tie. His hands were near black but he never seemed to complain about it. Tough fuck. He was tied to the wall to my right; the man in the leather jacket walked over and cut the ties. Jo fell to the floor with a thud. He tenderly touched his wrists and hands together as he removed the remnants of the ties from his arms. The man in the leather jacket picked him up and steadied him on his feet. The same look as before crossing his face as he leant down to help Jo up. Jo stood there still cradling his hands as he tried to move his fingers.

Opposite me I noticed the two boys approach the elderly man we shared a cage with. Charlie was his name. He hung from a hook, his hands bound together by a steel chain and cuffs. They were just like the ones they’d used on me the first time I’d come here and been locked in that solitary room. Jo had said he’d been up there for the past two weeks, no food or water. No opportunity to wash. They were starving him to death. A deed with which they had succeeded in doing yesterday, after he’d stopped breathing it was merely a waiting game for me and Jo as we had exchanged nervous glances at each other across the boiler room all afternoon. It was half way into the night when he first started rattling about. After that he had shaken all night. Gurgling and making choked noises. His arms had torn at the armpit; dead blood had run down the walls as it leaked from the splits in the flesh of Charlie’s arms. One of the boys leant over and unstrapped a heavy piece of sharpened metal. He seemed to hold it with a gentle touch. He was going to treasure this. Much like I’d thought I’d treasure blowing up the Hotel. I hadn’t, rather it had brought on the thinking that maybe it was time for me to stop with this nonsense of travelling about. Stop with this vendetta against my father. I’d never forgive him but I feel like I could ignore some things to have a little reprieve from this hectic life I now lived. I continued to look on as the boy lined his arms up square at Charlie’s neck. An instant later the blade flickered in the morning light. A sick squishing sound sounded out then another... another and yet another. What followed was thud as a head rolled over the flaw toward Jo. The other boy picked it up by its hair and slammed it into the wall opposite him when he noticed it move. A few moments later they pulled his body down from the hook and dragged it across the floor to where we all stood.

“Move... You try anything...” he gestured with his gun before proceeding out the door.

We moved out of the room and up he led us up corridor, the white of the walls hurt my eyes still and my headache was coming back. Jo walked beside me, the boys with their corpse behind us. We went through what seemed a different corridor than the one I’d been brought through to the boiler room originally. Or maybe it was the same one. I couldn’t know, it all looked the fucking same. White, it was white everywhere you fucking looked. We passed into another corridor and came out to a stairway. The man in the leather jacket motioned for us to walk up, so... up we went, three flights before the older man in the leather jacket stopped us. Now that I took a good look at him I guessed he had the look of a mechanic, some rusty old spanner from back in the old days.

“I’m going through, clear the folks in the commons out.” He said as he nodded to the boys before he walked through.

I turned around and looked at our escort. These boys weren’t boys. They were on the cusp of adulthood underneath their hoods they sported sparsely grown beards. They must have be nineteen maybe, eighteen at the least. Each wielded a machete in a knife holster tied to their calves the handle probably a mere second from their reach. Their faces were blank without emotion.

“You starved him?” I asked one of them, it was the first time I’d spoken all day. Jo and I had been screaming out all night for someone to help us, so it hurt to speak. He regarded me with a cool stare from underneath his hooded sweatshirt.

“We don’t question Mike.” The kid said his tone brokering no conversation.

The door opened from behind me and in walked three other men. One who’d been in the car, the quieter one; a black man with a deep scar on his forehead. To his left was the big red haired, bearded brute who’d interrogated me when I’d arrived. If I had to guess was anyone I’d met was Mike, It’d be him. An elderly Asian man accompanied them; he walked assisted by the cane in his hand. Maybe he was Mike.

They exchanged looks then we were led out into a corridor. We walked past a large window that showed through to a large open room decorated in lavish fabrics, curtains and carpets of the finest kinds. All decorated in the same white of the ship, with drops of yellow every now and then. It was like heaven in this hell on earth. We passed through the corridor and few more large windows surrounded by our ever growing entourage. As we came upon a set of hinged wooden doors, the man in the leather jacket came puffing up behind us.

“It wasn’t fucking hard to follow you guys. You left a nice fucking trail for me to follow.” He pointed towards the greasy marks Charlie’s body had been leaving on the ground as it’d been dragged along.

“Guess who’s cleaning that up later.” The big red haired man said as he looked at the two boys with a look that said it was them.

“Gentlemen, can we proceed. I’d like to enjoy a nice tea before the day is out and these two gentlemen stink can be smelt in the heavens above.” The elder man said. His cane ringing off the floor each time he took a new step with his right foot. Through the doors we went, we came out on a descending ramp leading down towards another door. Through the door I could see it, the outdoors.

We were ushered outside and down a ramp onto the pier. It was midday now and the sun was high in the air warming everything around including me. My face and head rushed and I staggered and fell down the ramp on to the pier. The Black man from the other day came to my aid and helped me to stand. I didn’t need his help though. Fuck these guys. I stood up under my strength and spread out my arms feeling the cool sea breeze sail through my stinking attire. I turned to look at the others, who had continued to walk down the pier towards a large crane manned by a winch.

“Get to steppin.” The black guy said as he pushed me by the shoulder. I moved along and caught up to the elder man who was setting the pace. As we drew nearer to the winch I noticed the same guy who’d been on the gate when I arrived was sitting in larger chair atop a crate; he held binoculars in his hand. His name was Will, I remember that.

“Goin’ down?” He asked with a thickly accented voice.

“Why else would we be here Will?” The red haired man said as he stood onto a loose metal container that swung off a metal rope connected to the winch. The boys dragged Charlie’s body onto it and we all followed after them piling in one after the other. Before long we were descending, Will had summoned the same bunch of younger teens that’d opened the gate for me to man the winch, they did so expertly.

We touched down into sand, stepping out in the opposite order that we had gotten on, we all got off the crate. The red haired man and the black guy who’d brought me here the other day began to move away. Each of them began surveying and patrolling around the general area.

The old Asian man spoke.

“Please take this opportunity to clean yourselves. Only a few of those things have come around since you let off that little fireworks display.” He looked at my pants and wrinkled his nose. “Please for both our sakes.”

He didn’t need to say anymore me and Jo began wading out into the drifts. A stain of brown and yellow followed us as we waded further out into the ocean. I stripped off my pants and dunked my head underneath one of the oncoming waves. It was cold so I didn’t stay in too long, my body wasn’t producing much heat on an empty stomach. I came up onto the beach naked and strained out my pants before putting them back on. They were cleaner than they were but still stained to fuck.

“Gentlemen, please join me for a bite.” The elderly man said as he gestured towards a table with newspaper on it. I approached him looking back to se Jo had exited the water and was lagging but coming up behind me.

On the paper sat cold cooked fish. I looked at the man and he nodded. I grabbed up a handful and cupped it to my face as I devoured each bite. Jo fell in beside me and almost instantaneously began eating the same way as me.

The pile of fish began to dwindle, off in the distance I could hear a ringing or a buzzing sound I turned to greet it. Not too far off was a black and yellow speedboat racing towards us. It slowed down as it drew near and beached closed to the shore. Three men jumped off the boat with a woman bound by her arms.

“Mike! What’re you doing? That’s Lisa.” The big red haired man yelled as soon as he noticed. It seemed they all had a look of surprise on their faces at this bound woman.

Mike answered.

“We’re setting her loose. She thinks she can live without us. Without me, well... we’ll see.” He pulled her along by the hair and pushed her into the sand, where she knelt low to the ground shaking.

Mike was a broad shouldered bald white man. His arms were heavily tattooed and bore the symbols associated with neo Nazi skinheads of the old days. He looked around at everyone before finally setting his eyes on me.

“And who do we have here.” He said.

As he walked over towards me, he unbuckled a pistol at his waist and held it before him. A moment later a shot fired right at me. I closed my eyes, this was it. I was to die on the whim of some psycho skinhead.

I opened my eyes a moment later and noticed Jo lying on the ground beside me clawing at the sand before him. I stepped away as Mike walked in closer. He let another three shots ring out. I noticed the black man from the other day had taken a spot far away from anyone else and was sitting with the elder Asian man.

“Guess what? You’re a lucky fuck you know that?" He bagan saying to me.

"Usually I’d just jump off the boat and kill all you fuckers dead. It’s your lucky day though, friend. See, here is my wife. Lisa, say hello...” He pulled her head up and she did as he obeyed.

“Hello...” Her voice was cracked and weak like mine.

“Well my fucking wife here just so happened to get angry with me today, told me she’s been sleeping with my best friend for the past year, my best friend... for the past fucking year!” He belted her across the back of her neck and she fell deep into the sand.

I just watched silently, waiting for him to ask me anything.

Mike wiped his nose with his forearm as he looked around franticly, tears now coming to his eyes. His mouth began arching up and down, he was trembling. “You’ll take her... Take her far away... I don’t want to see her again.”

The big red haired man came over carrying two familiar crates. It was from the Jeep I’d been driving. They were filled with military grade adrenaline. He popped open the lids and Mike seemed to forget his predicament as he inspected the case before him. He slipped his hand into the crate and lifted out a tiny carton. He opened it and pulled out one of the syringes.

“Where did you find this?” Mike asked.

“He had them.” The red haired man answered.

Mike seemed to think hard now as he considered me through his eyes.

“Where did you find this?” He asked me.

“At an army base, same place as the Jeep. Its gutted now, burnt to the ground. The people there are long gone. We all separated after someone sabotaged our entire compound. Set off our gas supply and damn near blew the entire warehouse to shit.” I answered.

“Interesting... We’re taking this. You come across any more or anything like it. You bring it back here. Paul here will treat you much better next time.” He gestured towards the red haired man to load the goods onto the boat.

“You’re free now bitch.” Mike said before he spat on the woman known as Lisa’s back. He walked off and jumped onto the boat. I leant down into the sand peering up at him as he talked with Paul. I didn’t need to hear what he was saying. I leant down and picked the woman up, her arm over my shoulder.

“Lady, I’m Max. I’m weak as fuck right now, but we need to get moving. Your husband over there, call it a hunch but I think he’s going to send a hunting party after us not long after we leave. We need to go now and I need you to be stronger than ever before if you want to survive. “

“What’s the point...?” She said as she meekly walked along with me.

I didn’t respond, instead I continued to walk; we walked up the beach and off towards the road. I looked back once more to see Mike leering up towards us. I looked back towards the road, walking a slow metered half pace. After a short while Lisa shrugged me off and began walking unaided. We walked for three hours before we found a vehicle with gas in it that still ran. When I’d been forced to drive out here, I’d driven mostly off road. That was in a Jeep, now I was driving a small van. It was already used. The entire ignition was barrelled out with some sort of tool and on the floor sat a bread knife that slot into the hole perfectly. Sliding theknife into the hole and turning it caused the vehicle choke about. I’d had to siphon nearby vehicles with a piece of tubing found in the rear of the van.

We spoke while I did that task.

"Why do you think they left this here?" Lisa asked as she inspected the vehicle.

"Probably ran out of gas." I answered, iy was the first thing I could think of.

"So why didn't they use that hose to do what you are?" She countered.

"No idea..." I stuck the tubing deep into the fuel tank of a sedan and sucked deep, the gas touched my lips. I quickly blocked off the flow with the stub of my thumb. Lisa brought over a piece of rubbish, a plastic bottle. I began filling up, sucking on the hose when the flow of gas dwindled I moved on to another and repeated the process.

Four hard earned bottles later and we'd gotten into the van, which protested as I tried to turn it on. Seconds later the thing was running and we'd begun driving. We’d had to stop and do the siphoning routine two times. I was able to skirt around most vehicles as we travelled up the side of the road. We drove past numerous amounts of creepers over the last few hours.

As the final few rays of sunlight left for the day we came upon an abandoned petrol station. We drove in slowly, looking about for signs of life... or death. There was nothing alarming so we drove out back into the carwash. It looped around and provided a good lookout point concealed from the road by dark green plastic flaps. I took the watch, the whole night.

“Send your fucking dogs after me and I’ll put the fucks down.” I said to myself late in the night as my stomach rumbled about. It got no response from Lisa. She was in her own little world as she slept the night away.

She’d need to wake up soon though because this shit was about to get real, two sets of lights flickered off in the distance catching against the plastic flaps.