Chapter 2 – Reunion
The car shook as we drove down the dirt path to Hershel's farm. I looked at Clementine and she seemed calm given her situation, then again she's always been like that. I smiled at her and she smiled back.
So far not much had changed, but I was still being very careful about what I said and what I did. Thankfully I was able to remember a lot of what happened during those first few weeks but I was fearful of what'd happen if I said or did something wrong. Things wouldn't start to get really bad until we got to my parents old drugstore.
But despite my worrying, I still had Clementine, and that's all I truly cared about. As long as she was happy, I was too. But I still couldn't bare knowing what happened to her parents. Before the bite made me draw my last breath, Clementine saw her mom and dad as Walkers. It was horrible.
The car pulled up right next to a large house with a barn located next to it. This was Hershel's farm, the place where we met Kenny and his family. We all got out of the car and Chet began stretching. He looked over to Shawn, "Hey Shawn? I'm 'a run on home. My momma's gonna be a in a snit."
Shawn shrugged and smiled, "No sweat, man. I'll catch you tomorrow night."
Chet looked over to both me and Clem, "It was nice to ya both."
I waved as Chet walked out back onto the dirt path we came in on. Clem walked up to me and grabbed my hand, she seemed slightly nervous. "You okay?" I asked softly.
"Yeah…" She replied, looking at Chet walk down the road.
We turned and walked around the car to the other side. We saw Shawn talk to an older man with a similar height and build as him. This man was Hershel Greene, his dad. The first time we were here, Hershel kicked us out prematurely when his son was attacked and killed by Walkers. The situation at the time was insane; Kenny's son, Duck, was being pulled away by Walkers and the tractor he was sitting on was on top of Shawn's leg. The choice came down to saving him or Duck. Duck got out safely but Shawn died and Hershel lost it. But now that I know what's going to happen I may have a chance to stop it. If Duck doesn't sit on the tractor, he won't accidently drive over Shawn's leg…
"I see you brought a couple of guests." Hershel looked at me with his right brow raised.
I should stay cool and repeat what I said the first time, "Your boy is a life saver."
"Glad he could be of help to somebody." Hershel said, putting his hands on his hips. "So, it's just you and your daughter then?"
"Oh, not his daughter" Shawn interrupted, "He's … well… just some guy who found her alone."
Hershel, somewhat alarmed, kneeled down and looked at Clementine, "Honey, do you know this man?"
Clementine said, without any hesitation, "Yeah, he's Lee."
That's different, I thought to myself. I looked over at Hershel who let out a brief sigh, "Okay then." He looked at me said, "Well if you want, you could stay here for the night, doesn't look like you'll be going anywhere at this hour."
I nodded my head at him "Thanks, that'd be—"
He then interrupted, "Just for the night though. I'm not runnin' a hotel for displaced families. I expect you and our other guests to be on your way tomorrow."
"Oh… Uhh… Okay."
Hershel then asked Clementine, "What's your name, Darlin'?"
Clementine hesitated but then told him, "Clem… Clementine."
"Nice to meet you Clementine, I'm Hershel." Hershel then looked at me, "Hershel Greene."
Hershel seemed very suspicious of me. He looked at my blood-stained shirt and wrinkled his nose, "You okay there?"
"Yeah," I said, "It's not mine… The blood that is."
"Whose is it then?"
"A co—" Wait a minute, if I tell him it's a cop's blood won't that just make matters worse?
"A co? What's that?"
Hershel frowned at me, "Don't worry, I'm aware of the situation in the cities. Whatever you did, you can forget about telling me. I don't really want to know."
Hershel shrugged, "Well, you better tuck in for the night. I'll be in the house if you need anything."
I nodded in acknowledgement and walked off to the barn with Clem. Once inside we put our blankets and pillows out and lay down. Clem's eyes started to close until she noticed the smell. She opened her mouth to talk but I knew what she was going to say.
"Manure" I said, before she could say anything.
"Manure?" She asked, looking at me.
"It's what this place smells of."
Clementine nodded her head, with a somewhat confused expression, and closed her eyes again. I looked at the ceiling idly as I began counting sheep. "I miss my mom and dad." Clementine said sounding slightly tired.
"I bet, Clem."
"How far is Savannah?"
Before I knew it, Clem was sleeping like an angel. I closed my eyes with a clear conscience. I was able to get Clementine and keep her safe. Everything was playing out like I wanted it to so far, but soon I'd have to deal with Hershel's son, Shawn. I have to think of a way to save him. This way I can test if I'm able to challenge fate and win. All I need to do is stop Duck from getting on the tractor. Or at least stop the tractor from moving onto Shawn's leg…
I drifted off to sleep, thinking about the Mysterious smiling man… Should I pursue who he is? Then again how could I? He somehow turned back time and was able to give me a second chance. I doubt someone with that amount of power probably would be in the phone book.
I fell asleep, and started dreaming about my last moments with Clementine. The relief I felt when I saved her from that psychopath. The sadness I felt when she said goodbye. It's odd that she's more trusting towards me than before. Maybe a part of her does remember our time spent together… Of course clutching at straws wouldn't get me anywhere.
That was when I heard the Smiling man's voice, "Having splendid dreams, Mister Everett?" I was startled. I opened my eyes and found myself still in the barn. I tried moving but was completely paralyzed. I tried speaking but my lips were numb. "Don't worry, I shan't keep you long. Just wanted to congratulate you on the fine job you're doing. Most people would've had some sort of breakdown by now but you… you are one of the stronger ones out there aren't you? You're will is very, very powerful."
I looked around the room but still saw no sign of him. "I know that you have many questions and I will answer a lot them in due course, dear boy, but in the meantime sit tight… and rest easy."
I was suddenly able to move again and jumped up. I ran over to the barn door and slid it open. It was pitch black outside and there was no sign of any human life other than the large house that stood to my right. I closed the door and walked back to my 'bed', pinching the area in-between my eyes. I lay back down and stared at the ceiling. Suddenly I felt a small hand hold mine.
I looked over to Clementine; she was lying there holding my hand. Her eyes were teary, "Please… Don't go…"
"Clem—?" I said, puzzled.
"Please… Don't leave me again." She said with a whimper. She closed her eyes again and fell asleep, holding my hand tightly.
She... She remembers!? I turned my head away and kept my eyes wide open. I was filled with partial shock. So many thoughts went through my mind… There was no way I was going back to sleep that night.