When I woke up the next morning, I felt strong enough to be outside of the room. I could feel the slight chill of the outside breeze from the window. I knew it hadn't been morning by the way the sun was shining and its brightness.
I breathed in, then my stomach rumbled in hunger. I'd slept right through breakfast. I stood up and stretched, my back and elbows popped in the process; which felt good. I clenched my neck with both hands afterwards, forgetting that I still had cuts, scratches and stitches. I'd hoped it'd heal soon... as pain had always been my least favorite feeling.
I walked into the kitchen, and found a middle aged woman breaking walnuts into a bowl at the table. I'd never met her; let alone seen her around. She looked up at me, with a serious face, then smiled.
"Hi, sweetie!" she said joyously. I tilted my head at her in confusion. "looks like you're feeling well enough to come out of the dorm!" I leaned against the door frame and worriedly smiled.
"I'm sorry," I said shaking my head and rubbing my temple."I didn't catch your name." the woman stood up and set the walnut cracker on the table next to the bowl, then walked to me. She wiped her hands on the sides of her jeans and stuck her right one out.
"Alice," she firmly shook my hand. "have you met Lizzie and Jack?" she asked and I nodded. "I'm their mom." she says and I nod once again.
"Nice to meet you," I say and she smiles wider. "Lizzie is a very nice girl."
"Well, she's just like her momma." Alice says with a bright smile that kind of scares me.
Alice had frightened me a bit. Just the way she sat and walked freaked me out. Her hair was a light auburn color, and her eyes stung a pale green. Her smile had a demonic twist to it.
On the inside, she seemed like a sweet woman who was very caring about others, but her appearance said something totally different. I had a very strange feeling being as much as a yard within her presence.
I got a strange vibe from her. I felt like I couldn't trust her. I didn't know why she had such a negative impact on me; her children never made me feel like that... at least not yet.
I walked outside and inhaled the aroma of something being grilled. It smelled great, but it reminded me of living in the white house, smelling the exact same thing: eggs and rabbit. It took me back to the time when we had the same things for breakfast outside with Sophia and Carl a week before. I pushed the thought to the back of my head, and walked over to Rick and Michonne. They were talking to a woman who had frequently checked on me the past few days, and a Korean man. Their names are Glenn and Maggie.Maggie had a thick southern accent, and Glenn had this sense of purity and innocence.
Rick cleared the last couple feet when he saw me.
"Hey!" he said with a big smile.
"Hi!" I relplied happily. Maggie stepped forward and smiled very widely, holding Glenn's hand tightly on her lap.
"Seems like you're feeling a lot better!" she said loudily. I smiled and nodded, noticing her round pregnant belly. "we were just about to serve some lunch." I closed my eyes and stood on my tip toes and sniffed the air smiling. Maggie, Rick, Michonne and Glenn laughed.
"How's your neck feel?" Glenn asked with a little concern. I tried to stretch it, but pain shot through my jawline down to the nape of my neck.
"It doesn't hurt as bad as it used to, but I can't twist my head to stretch it." Glenn nodded.
"You still have some stitches in there." Michonne said and I looked at her. Maggie and Glenn kissed, then they led me to a small fire with a stainless steel grill over it. The food was still cooking, but it looked delicious.
I lightly rubbed my neck. I could feel the stitches, and the cuts that became scabs and scratches that weren't deep enough to need stitches. I sat down in a lawn chair and squinted up against the bright afternoon sun. I shielded my eyes with my other hand and licked my dry lips.
"These are gonna leave some really ugly scars." I said softly. Rick squatted down in front of me and put his right hand on my left knee. He looked into my eyes and half smiled. I felt big looking down at him.
"You know those scars are gonna be reminders that you kicked ass," he said, lifting up his shirt and pointing at a scar on his left rib cage. "be proud of them." I snickered and smirked. Rick and Carl have the same scar, but on opposite sides of their chests.
"Battle scars." Glenn added. "The you-kicked-the-ass-of-some-old guy-and-you're-fourteen scars!" Maggie said. How did she know how old I was? I didn't let it bother me. This made me feel good. I agreed with them. As they told me all the good things about having permanent scars, I was reminded of what Carl had told me the other night.
As Maggie handed me a plate with deer meat and strawberries, Carl jogged over.
"Hi, Car-" I said. He quickly glanced at me, then looked back at his father immediately.
"Dad, you need to come see this." Rick set his plate of food on his lap and sighed.
"Come on!" Carl yelled, running back the way he came. Rick stood and handed his plate to Michonne. He sprinted after his son, which made me worry. I stood up, set my plate on the chair I was sitting in, and ran after them.
Murderously loud screams could be heard from a mile away.