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Walking - Daryl
prisca1960

Fan Fiction - The Walking Dead - Hidden History

Hallo, my friends. I thought, maybe it is time to try something new. Don't worry, that doesn't mean that I will leave the boys behind, but it might be fun to write in other fandoms, too.

This ficlet is originally written for comment_fic.

Title: Hidden History
Fandom: The Walking Dead
Character: Daryl Dixon
Rating: PG13
Word Count: 1124
Prompt: The Walking Dead, any, shelter in an abandoned library.
Disclaimer: Of course, I don't own The Walking Dead nor the character - I'm just borrowing them for a while




Daryl tried to put on a stoic face while he was sitting alone in a corner, cleaning his crossbow. Why on earth had Rick decided to look for shelter in an abandoned library? The church vis-a-vis would have been just as good. A big stone building with solid wooden doors, the windows nailed up. But no, it was the library where they would spend the night in some degree safe and warm; after days on the road finally able to find at least some rest.

Most of the group had already started to make themselves comfortable for the next hours. Glen and Maggie were sharing a blanket as ever; their heads put together. Carol rocked baby Judith in her arms; a book beside her. Rick and Carl had taken over the first shift of guard.

And Daryl? He had a hard time to keep breathing. The smell in the air, dust and old books, so familiar, only the flavor of freshly baked biscuits was missed. He had never shown any interest in books; his childhood had been characterized by the try to get trough the day without being beaten up by his father. His mother had never cared about it, all that she was interested in was how to get the next bottle of booze.

It had been one of those days when he fled out of the house together with Merle, his three years older brother. A thunderstorm storm had raged, the streets had been empty. No place where they could go. Finally, they ended in the old library of the village.

The big hall was empty, beside of a woman sitting behind the counter; she eyed them through her thick glasses and finally she offered them to stay until the worst was over. With a smile, she put some cookies on an old plate and reached it over. Though Merle had looked annoyed, Daryl hadn't been able to resist.

Merle was the tough one; he had already learned that life didn't give you anything if you were not willing to demand it. You had to fight to survive, and it was smart better to trust no one. He tried to teach his little brother this philosophy of life, but Daryl still had dreams of a better future. Fighting was not his cup of tea before he discovered crossbow archery. Soon enough he was even better with it than his brother. This was the moment when Merle stopped to show any interest in him.

The library deepened the rift between them. Merle was not interested in books and the care of the librarian he met with mistrust and rejection. For Daryl, though, it was like stepping into another world. For the first time in his life, he got a real chance; the woman didn't only spoil him with home-made treats and warm milk, she taught him to love books. Encouraged him to learn as much as possible. Trusted and believed in him. Loved him, like a mother should love her child.

"One day, little Puck, the world will be yours. You are stronger than you think. As long as you don't give up your dreams, everything is possible."

She had always called him Little Puck.

...

Now he was sitting in a library again, but the warmth and feeling of security he had felt once, were long gone. The world had turned into a madhouse and made it impossible to hold on to his dreams. The reality had caught up with him when he had killed the only person who had ever cared for him.

The library had been his refuge when the zombies took over the world and he was left behind all alone. His home was long gone, his mother died in the fire, caused by his drunken father. During the first days of the zombie apocalypse, the man had picked up a fight with the wrong person ... and died, too. Only to wake up again one hour later … as a zombie. All Daryl could feel was the irony of this: his father had always been a monster, so, what had actually changed? Also Merle was gone, when the people started to realize that something was going wrong in the world, he got on his motorcycle and vanished without looking back.

The next weeks in the library probably were the best of his life. Outside ruled the chaos, but inside it was only him and the librarian. He had promised to protect her with his bow when it was necessary. And he had failed. One night the zombies overrun the building. She told him to hide somewhere in the backrooms. When the excessive noise finally slowed down, he dared to come out again. He found her in the hall; scattered books around her, more death than alive. She had sacrificed herself for him. Not able to talk anymore, but her eyes had told him what she begged him for.

'Bring it to an end. I don't want to come back as one of them.“

His hands hadn't even trembled when he grabbed for the bow; with a stony face he had aimed at her; only a shot into her head would guarantee that her brain was destroyed forever. Later he had buried her, together with his dreams, in the yard of the library.

...

"Pucky. What's going on?"

He startled out of his thoughts when he heard this name. Pucky. Little Puck. The librarian had been the only one how called him like that. Until now. Until he had met Rick and the others. Carol. Despite everything she had to go through, deep inside she was still a warmhearted, caring woman. He had felt attracted to her from the very first moment, maybe it was the shortcut gray hair, which reminded him of a woman he had loved so much, ages ago.

His hands clenched the crossbow even more. It would not happen again. He would protect her up to his last breath. Determined he shook off his dark thoughts and got up.

„I guess, I need to go for a blow. Maybe I can hunt down some rabbits.“


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