SUMMARY : (Set in the beginning of season 3) Daryl and Reader go on a run together, attempting to find supplies for the group, when they come face to face with an unlikely threat.
WORD COUNT : 4,164
A/N : I am so incredibly sorry this took me so long to get out to you guys! I wanted my first fic here to be great, so hopefully, you guys enjoy it! Please send me in any requests for stories you’d like me to write featuring Daryl x Reader. ENJOY!
It was hot.
And not your every day Georgian heat — but a new level of humidity that had sweat dripping from every inch of your body the second the sun came up. You had lost track of the months as time went on, but if you had to guess, you’d say it was right about the middle of July.
With the way the world was now, the dead up and walking, humanity turning against itself, the least you deserved was a slight breeze.
“What I would do for a glass of ice cold water right about now,” you muttered to yourself, wiping the sweat from your forehead with the back of your hand. Sighing, you readjusted your grip on the shotgun you held, scanning the abandoned parking lot for signs of movement.
The area was mostly clear — save for a couple of long since abandoned cars, stray shopping carts, and the half a dozen walkers you and Daryl had taken down moments before.
You joined up with Rick’s group a couple months back — they had just lost their farm and were on the run, attempting to find a safe haven to ride the winter out until finding a more permanent home.
As for you, you’d been on your own for a while — you were an only child and both of your parents had died years before everything went to hell.
After the world ended, you caught wind of a group that planned to make the trek to Fort Benning, unsure if the army base was still up and running. With no where else to go, it seemed like the smartest option for you.
The group of fifteen had only gotten a quarter of the way there before you started losing people. Some were torn to shreds by herds of walkers, a few were bit and had to be put down — others just lost hope and faded away. Before you knew it, you were the last one standing.
But then you met a group of people — a group of survivors. And everything changed.
You’d been taking shelter inside an abandoned house, trying to ride out the winter. You were dangerously low on supplies but the thought of going outside with no backup scared you more than starving to death. You’d been debating whether or not to scavenge the houses on the other side of the neighborhood when a scream came from outside, drawing your attention to the frost covered window.
You saw a group of people out on the street surrounded by more walkers than they could handle. A few of the men were fending off the dead with knives and machetes, forming a tight circle around other members of the group. One of the women, you realized in horror, seemed to be pregnant.
Part of you knew you shouldn’t get involved, shouldn’t draw attention to yourself. But a bigger part of you couldn’t sit and do nothing. Resolutely, you grabbed your shot gun and swung open the door. You spotted a walker creeping up behind a man with a crossbow strung across his shoulder and pointed your weapon that way, cocking the gun and pulling the trigger, landing a perfect headshot.
The man jumped in surprise, his eyes scanning the area until they landed on you. You let out a shaky breath at the intensity of his gaze, lowering your weapon slightly. A moment passed between you two, before he gave you a quick nod and stabbed the next walker he saw. With your help, the group was able to take down every walker on that street.
It took a little while for you to gain everyone’s trust and vice versa, but in no time, you fit right in with the group. Truth be told, you felt more at home with them than you had in a long time.
“Y/N?” came a gruff voice, snapping you out of your thoughts. You glanced backwards, locking eyes with the crossbow wielding man you later came to know as Daryl. “Ya good?” he asked, wiping his hands on the red rag he kept in his back pocket.
You nodded quickly, averting your gaze from his penetrating stare. “How’s the lock comin’ along?” you motioned to the chains wrapped around the doors to the grocery store the two of you were trying to scavenge.
“It ain’t,” Daryl heaved, tucking the rag back into his pocket.
“We can head back to the prison — see if T-Dog has any tools we can use?” you offered, hefting your shotgun up to rest on your shoulder.
“Can’t afford ta use up gas like that,” he countered, turning his back on you to peer in the window.
You sighed, closing your eyes and taking a breath. “It’s damn hot today,” you mumbled. “The world’s gone to shit, there are zombies trying to eat our brains, and I might actually die of a heat stroke. How embarrassing is that?”
Daryl huffed and cocked his head towards you, giving you a look. But you could see the humor in his eyes that never quite reached his face.
When you first joined the group, Daryl steered clear of you — you were completely convinced he hated your guts. But as time went on and you began to spend more time with him, slowly but surely, he began to open up. Not that he would bear his soul to you or anything, but every once in a while, the two of you would actually have meaningful conversation.
Daryl was a lot more intuitive than he liked to let on, but you could see right past that tough exterior. You found comfort in his presence, which was a hard feat to come by these days. Truthfully, you felt the safest when you were with Daryl — not that you would ever admit that out loud.
But a small part of you liked to think he already knew — by the way he would hover a little closer when the two of you left the prison. Or when faced against some kind of danger, he always positioned himself slightly in front of you without even realizing it. You never actually voiced how he made you feel, but you figured Daryl caught on. He had a way of reading you like no one else could.
“Ah, screw this,” Daryl growled, snapping you once again out of your thoughts. He pushed away from the window and grabbed the crossbow he had propped up against the building. “Let’s go ‘round back an’ try ‘ta find another way in.”
Nodding in agreement, you reached for your backpack and strapped it to your back, falling into step beside Daryl as the two of you made your way around the building. “Lori’s almost due,” you murmured aloud. “You think we’ll find any supplies here for the baby?”
Daryl shrugged a shoulder, scanning the area cautiously, always on alert. “Hope so,” he said simply.
Sighing heavily, you rubbed at the base of your neck where there always seemed to be mounting pressure. “Do you ever wish you weren’t here?” you suddenly asked, the question popping out before you could think about it.
Daryl’s steps faltered a moment before he grunted and shook off the surprise. “The hell kind a question is that?”
“I mean, do you ever wonder if any of this is worth it? The constant danger, losing the people you love,” you rattled, peeking a glance at him. “Sometimes I think about what it’d be like to not be here.”
Daryl’s steps slowed and you could suddenly feel waves of tension rolling off him. You couldn’t bring yourself to look at him, feeling your cheeks turn red from your sudden revelation.
Suddenly, you felt a hand grab your elbow, pulling you to a stop. Your gaze landed on Daryl and flickered to where he held your arm. When you lifted your eyes back to him, you were met with his penetrating stare, expression unreadable.
His deep blue eyes trailed over your face, as if he was trying to read you the same way you were trying to read him. A heavy moment of silence passed as the two of you stared at one another, an almost palpable current of electricity coursing through you.
Daryl cleared his throat, looking like he struggled for words. “For what it’s worth,” he finally spoke, his deep voice rumbling just above a whisper, “I’m glad you’re here.”
Before you could come up with a response, a rustling behind you tore your gaze from him. And just like that, the two of you were back in survival mode. Daryl came to stand by your side, crossbow aimed towards the trees as you raised your shotgun in the same direction. The rustling faded and all that was left was a heavy silence.
“C’mon, let’s keep movin’,” Daryl whispered as he crept along the side of the grocery store, you right on his heels.
The two of you rounded the corner and ended up at the back of the grocery store. You nudged Daryl with your elbow and nodded towards the broken in back door. Crossbow armed and ready, Daryl crept to the door and whistled, waiting to hear any movement inside. After a few moments passed, he motioned for you to follow him inside.
Immediately you were hit with a putrid smell, like rotting food mixed with rotting flesh, and you felt a wave of nausea. Daryl seemed to be equally affected and covered his mouth and nose with the crook of his arm. Ignoring the way your stomach heaved, you focused on breathing slowly through your mouth.
Using the butt of your shotgun, you tapped one of the empty metal shelves near you, the sound echoing throughout the large market. The two of you waited with baited breath for the sound of any other living or non living thing to make itself known.
After a few moments of silence, you released the breath you’d been holding and looked at Daryl. “I think we’re good to go.”
Daryl just grunted, which over the past few months, you came to interpret as an agreement.
“Why don’t you check out the back of the store and I’ll head to the front?” you offered, already making your way up one of the aisles. You didn’t get far before you felt Daryl grabbing your arm once again.
“Naw, I think we ought ‘ta stick together,” he admitted, his face drawn tightly.
“It’ll take us twice as long if we stick together — this store is huge,” you said slightly incredulous.
“I ain’t lettin’ ya go off on your own. This place ain’t safe, Y/N.”
You sighed, feeling your heart swell regardless.
Things with Daryl were complicated. The two of you had gone from barely speaking to being…friends? You’d like to think you were at least friends, but Daryl was hard to read. You never really knew where you stood with him. There was a part of you, one that you tried very hard to ignore, that longed for something more.
“We’ll be in and out,” you exhaled finally, resting your hand on Daryl’s arm, ignoring the way he tensed. “Promise.”
Daryl seemed to have an internal struggle, but eventually nodded, not looking too pleased. “Anythin’ happens, I mean anythin’, ya just holler an’ I’ll be there.”
“You got it, Dixon,” you retorted, giving him a small salute. Daryl just scoffed and rolled his eyes, but you could see the hint of a smile as he walked away.
Pleased with your small victory, you made your way up the aisle and to the front of the store. You surveyed your surroundings — noticing how empty the store already was, having been ravaged by other survivors. Deciding to start with the canned food section, you headed that way, keeping your gun ready to fire.
The aisle was almost completely cleared out, which wasn’t too surprising. You grabbed what little was left on the shelves — two cans of corn, one can of peaches, two cans of black beans, some kind of canned meat — and shoved them into your backpack. You hefted the bag back onto your shoulders and continued on.
From the back of the store, you could hear Daryl rummaging around and hoped he was having more luck than you were.
You were about to head to the toiletry section, when you heard a noise coming from the far right side of the store. Your heart began to race a little bit faster, nerves standing on end. Gripping your shotgun tightly, you took a breath and began creeping towards where you heard the sound. The rancid smell that laced the store began to get stronger and stronger, making your eyes water.
Suddenly, a low growl came from the next aisle and you slowly rounded the corner, discovering what made the noise.
There was a walker hunched over what seemed to be the remains of its last meal. The stark white tile floor was covered in blood and all that seemed to be left was bits of human flesh and bone. You felt bile rise to your throat as the walker feasted, unaware of your arrival.
Tiptoeing towards the biter, you softly rested your shotgun against one of the shelves and reached for the knife you kept strapped to your leg. Raising your weapon up, you came to stand behind the walker and with all the force you could muster, stabbed your knife into the top of its head. It stilled immediately and as you yanked your knife out, it fell to the floor.
You released the breath you’d been holding and stared at the corpse. What the hell has this world come to? you thought solemnly. Grimacing, you wiped the blood from your knife onto your jeans and decided it was time to get back to work.
Just as you were about to turn around, you heard the distinct cock of a shot gun directly behind you — and before you could process what was happening, the barrel of the gun was pressed against the back of your head.
You froze — a pit forming in your stomach so intense you couldn’t feel anything else. For a moment, no one moved…
Until finally, an unfamiliar voice broke through the silence. “P-put your hands up,” it spoke, a tremble leaking through.
As slow as possible, you raised your hands above your head, swallowing the lump that formed in your throat.
“T-turn around,” came the same shaky voice and you gradually turned to face the stranger.
What you did not expect was for the stranger holding you at gun point to be a young boy. He couldn’t have been more than sixteen years old, eyes big and scared, face pale and thin. You could see the shot gun — your shot gun, the one you had set down just moments before — shaking ever so slightly in his tight grip.
“Let’s just take it easy, alright?” you said in a low voice, keeping your hands up.
“Drop the knife,” he retorted, motioning the gun towards the knife you still had clamped in your hand.
“Why don’t you lower the gun and we can talk —“
“I said drop the knife!” the boy shouted, taking a step towards you, hands still trembling.
“Okay, okay…I hear you,” you nodded, releasing the knife, it clattering loudly to your feet. “Now please, kid, just lower the gun,” you urged.
“Give me your backpack,” he responded, eyes darting around frantically.
You nodded again and slowly began to shrug off your backpack. Something about the kid seemed off — it didn’t seem like he wanted to hurt you, he was just desperate. “Look, I know you’re scared. Lower the gun and let’s talk for a minute,” you offered, holding your bag in one hand, the other in front of you.
The boy took a step forward and snatched the bag from your hands, shrugging it onto his own shoulder. “I-I’m real sorry about this, lady,” he croaked.
All of the sudden, he aimed the gun at your head and you saw his finger moved towards the trigger when —
“HEY!” a familiar voice boomed.
You saw movement from the corner of your eye and suddenly, there was Daryl.
The kid, having been distracted by the sudden appearance, turned his head just as Daryl tackled him into the aisle’s metal shelving and the two tumbled to the ground. You saw the shotgun slip out of the boy’s hands and fall to the floor. Daryl jumped to his feet, grabbing the kid by the collar of his shirt and heaving him up.
Ignoring the fact that you were almost just shot, you launched forward and grabbed your shotgun.
Suddenly, a glint of silver caught your attention and you felt your stomach drop. During the scuffle, the kid had grabbed the knife you had dropped earlier and now held it just above Daryl’s head, ready to strike.
“STOP!” you screamed, cocking the shotgun and pressing it to the kid’s temple, everyone immediately stilling. “Drop it,” you growled, glaring at the kid who looked like he was about to pass out.
“I-I-I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to —“ the boy stuttered, eyes darting between you and Daryl.
“Put the knife down, kid,” you repeated, softening your voice a little. After a heavy moment of silence, the boy dropped the knife.
You let out a breath and swung your gaze to Daryl, who was watching at you, breathing heavy, grip still locked on the kid’s shirt. His eyes traveled over you frantically, worry written all over his face.
The kid began to squirm in Daryl’s grasp, drawing his attention back to boy. “An’ what the fuck ya think you’re doin’?” he snarled, shoving the boy back into the metal shelving.
“W-wait, I-I’m —“
“You best be keepin’ your damn mouth shut,” he growled, just inches from the boy’s face.
“Wait Daryl, let him talk,” you finally spoke up, lowering your gun.
Daryl swung his gaze back to you, eyes ablaze. “This asshole jus’ held a gun ‘ta your head an’ you wanna let ‘im talk?”
“I-I-I I don’t…I’m…I didn’t —“ the kid began, before Daryl pushed him back farther into the shelf.
“Ya better start talkin’ ‘fore I kick your damn teeth out,” he hissed at the kid.
“I-I didn’t want to kill her,” the boy finally stammered. “I-I swear, I didn’t. I thought I had to. I didn’t —“
Before the kid could continue, Daryl reeled back and punched the kid square in the face, a crack sounding throughout the store. The boy howled in pain and dropped to his knees, cradling his face.
Blood streaming over his lips, the kid looked up at Daryl in panic. “I think you broke my fucking nose!”
“You’re lucky I don’t break your fuckin’ neck!” Daryl snarled back, before you jumped in front of him, putting both your hands on his chest to hold him back.
“Daryl, stop!” you pleaded, struggling to hold him back. You placed both hands on either side of his face so he would look at you.
His fiery expression faltered as he stared at you, taking in every inch of your face as his breathing eventually slowed and his body sagged slightly.
“I thought I lost ya, Y/N,” he mumbled softly.
You smiled, gently running your thumb over his cheek. “I’m right here,” you whispered.
Daryl didn’t respond, just leaned slightly into your touch.
A groan from behind pulled you back into the present moment and you looked down at the boy.
“What’s your name?” you asked softly, crouching down so you were eye level.
The kid looked up at Daryl with fearful eyes, before they landed on you. “Wyatt,” he finally whispered.
“Do you have a group, Wyatt?” you continued.
Wyatt nodded quickly, watching Daryl pace back and forth like a caged animal behind you. “We were runnin’ out of food, water, medicine…they sent us here for supplies. I didn’t know —”
“Us? The hell ya mean us?” Daryl snapped, coming to stand directly behind you. “Ya mean ‘ta tell me there’re more of ya pricks here?”
You watched the color drain from Wyatt’s face, his gaze traveling to where you had killed that walker earlier — the walker that had been feasting on its latest meal…
“Not anymore,” he squeaked out, staring at the mess of blood and gore.
You sighed heavily, rubbing the base of your neck. In any other scenario, this stranger would’ve been dead. If Daryl hadn’t killed him, you would have. In this world, it was kill or be killed — something you learned the hard way over time.
But this kid was different. He was just a kid. He was just trying to keep his group safe and you could understand that — it was scary the lengths you yourself would go to protect those you loved.
Turning your head, you stared up at Daryl. You would do just about anything for that man. Hell, you almost shot the kid trembling in front of you for him.
Sometimes, you had to make tough choices to keep your people safe. And other times, a little humanity never hurt anyone.
You reached for your backpack that had been thrown to the ground during the fight and unzipped it. Pulling out a couple of the cans you had just found, you set them down in front of Wyatt, who watched you with big eyes.
“The hell you doin’, Y/N?” Daryl questioned — not accusingly, more in confusion.
You just gave him a reassuring smile, before adding your knife to the pile. “Listen to me very closely, Wyatt,” you said, grabbing the kids attention. “If this were to happen again, some people may not be as understanding as me and my friend. But I get it, okay? You were just doing what it takes to survive,” you paused, glancing up at Daryl meaningfully. “I would do the same thing for the people I care about.”
Daryl stared down at you, his expression a mixture of understanding and something else you couldn’t quite place. He cleared his throat and reached a hand down towards you. “C’mon, we gotta go.”
You took his hand and stood up, lingering just a second before pulling away to strap on your backpack and grab your shot gun. Wyatt stared up at you, mouth opening and closing like a fish.
You moved to stand beside Daryl who was stringing his crossbow over his shoulders. He stared at Wyatt, before crouching down a bit. “I want ya ‘ta count ‘ta two hundred and then get the hell outta here, understand?”
Wyatt nodded quickly, wiping at the blood dripping down his chin. “T-thank you,” he finally spoke, gathering the items you had given him into his arms.
You gave one last encouraging nod to the kid, before you and Daryl headed outside, welcoming the fresh air. The two of you hurried around the store, keeping your weapons up as you jogged to the car parked in the front. Finally reaching the vehicle, you tossed your bag and weapon into the back, hoisting yourself inside and slamming the door shut, Daryl sliding into the drivers seat.
As the adrenaline began to wash off you, a heaviness settled over your mind. The reality of what almost happened hit you like a truck and you felt a shiver run through you. You could feel Daryl watching you but kept your own gaze trained ahead, focusing on slowing down your breathing.
But no matter what you did, you couldn’t calm yourself — it had been too close. Way too close. And your heart wouldn’t stop beating a mile a minute in your chest.
You let out a sigh, feeling the breath hitch in your throat. Suddenly, Daryl’s warm hand was squeezing your shoulder. “Hey,” he said softly, drawing your attention to him, “you’re okay, Y/N.”
You quickly shook your head. “No, no, i-it’s not that,” you admitted, swallowing the lump in your throat. “I-I thought…when I saw that knife above your head I just…I…” you broke off, the feeling of complete terror consuming you.
And then suddenly, you were being pulled into Daryl’s arms.
He wrapped both arms tight around your shaking frame, holding you against his chest. After the surprise of rare affection from him wore off, you found your arms snaking around his waist, holding him just as tightly. You immediately felt calm, his steady heart beat and warmth grounding you. It may have been your imagination, but you thought you felt him place a light kiss to the top of your head.
“I thought I lost you,” you mumbled into his chest, thankful he couldn’t see the blush creeping over your cheeks or the warmth spreading through your heart.
“I’m right here,” he murmured softly, the words rumbling through his chest as he moved one hand to cradle the back of your head. “Imma always be right here.”
your normal cashier, doesnt try to make conversation with you (mentally tries), internally screams when he works the express lane but someone carts up with over 15 items
early morning shift, feels pain when someone takes an item off the shelf and puts it somewhere else bc they dont want it anymore, buys powdered donuts with employee discount
walmart mcdonald's worker with hansol and xero, the customers love him and his smile, has accidentally charged someone with '10' orders of cheeseburgers instead of '01'
greets people when they enter, has to retrieve stray shopping carts from the parking lot, once mistook someone as his mom from behind and felt complete embarassment when he tried to hug them
doesnt get why he works in the home improvement department, during winter wanders around seasonal section to look at christmas lights, doesnt know where everything is so he guesses when customers ask and hopes for the best
helps out in household essentials section, willing to go to the moon and back to get something off the top shelf for a customer, slips his mixtape into their cart when they're not looking bc it's fire and they gotta experience it
movies music & books department worker, when he's sure he's alone he jams out to those music samples even if he only knows two of the artists there, gets distracted by and watches disney movies playing in the tv & video section
fellow cashier, always gotta call up the manager bc he forgets how to work the register, tries to start up small conversation with toddlers to seem cool but fails and parents laugh awkwardly and apologize
used to be walmart mcdonald's now works in sewing crafts and party supplies department, gets excited when kids shyly ask him to get things from higher shelves (even if he struggles sometimes), somehow convinces people to buy more than they need of party supplies
who thought it was a good idea for him to work in the bakery???, doesnt know shit about baking so he just gets people's cake orders and compliments them on their choices (though he'll never know what a chantilly cake is), eats the cookie samples
also a walmart mcdonald's worker, makes customers repeat their order once or twice bc 'did they say twenty orders of five mcnuggets or five orders of twenty mcnuggets' either way it's a lot, has asked a customer 'are you sure' bc they ordered something he doesn't like
stocks shelves in food section, forgets to put things back when they're returned so he ends up carting around a huge stack of fruit rollups and chips for half an hour until he realizes he hasn't done anything, randomly checks the nutrition facts on products just to surprise himself
parking lot cart duty with gohn, takes selfies in the break room while everyone is scarfing down deli sandwiches in the background, found fifty dollars on the ground in the parking lot and made an open announcement on the intercom to find the owner (didnt find them but didnt keep the money either)
Nott M. Portent watched the tea kettle bubbling through his greasy locks, pale lips turned into a frown, as if it was a rainy day and the sun was hiding. The sun was not hiding, but Nott couldn’t tell on account of his greasy locks, so the day may just as well have been rainy, which he pessimistically assumed. He put on an oven mitt and a sunflower apron, retrieving the sugar cookies from the oven.
His husband Duke was sitting in his favorite recliner, puffing on a fat cigar and reading National Geographic. “Tigers are the bomb.” He turned the page. “Nott, those cookies smell bitchin’. What kind are they?”
He gave a low sigh. “The kind is not important… what is important, is where they’re going to go.” He gently pushed the cookies into a plastic tupperware bin, sealing it neatly along the edges, then shuffled back to the counter and began washing his cooking supplies.
Duke looked up from an attractive ad about silver eagle dollars, concerned about his husband. “Hey there, what’s got you all sad and greasy? Let’s see that pale gloomy face I love so much.” He sauntered over, fetching a cookie. “Mmm, damn I love cookies…”
Nott just fuckin hated the world, and the human worms feasting on its carcass. But the love of Duke Nukem stayed his shotgun-hand from shotgunning. He couldn’t even tell Duke how important this was to him. He was not, as Duke was, a master of language. All he could do was try to express his love, as best he could, through cookies and tea.
“Duke it’s just hard being optimistic when people are so terrible… My whole life is just cold bitter hatred.”
Duke munched another cookie and opened the fridge, retrieving the 1-percent milk, which he poured into a quaint cow mug. “Don’t let the world get you down, Nott. If you wanna make an impact, you gotta be loud. I wake up and see the badness and the filth, but I fight back, and I stay as Me as I can possibly be. The world is your skillet: If you wanna make an omelet, you gotta turn the dial up to eleven. Mixing metaphors, taking names, kicking ass, and saving the world. That’s what it’s all about.” He took a loud sip, sliding up behind Nott as he was scrubbing off an egg beater. His free hand wrapped around his waist in half a snuggle.
“No Duke s-stop I’m doing dishes…” Nott cringed a little as color filled his blanched face like rosy watercolors on a fresh canvas.
“I’ll do -your- dishes, baby…” Nott felt the flush rising all across his face to his neck and ears. “No for real you always ambush me when I’m washing the dishes I have so many to do…”
Duke backed off, sighing. “Okay I was just trying to cheer you up…” He finished his milk, putting on his size-13 boots. “I’m going to stomp some aliens, and then I think I’ll buy some movies.” He left the house.
Nott resumed his dish-washing. He had used too much soap and been too distracted. Now the water was tepid and slick, and the foam rose up thickly in the mixing bowl as his brush ran up and down the edges. He let go, watched the scrub brush and bowl sink, feeling that he had gone too far and upset Duke. The terrible isolation crept in, the feeling that his loneliness was complete. The last fragile cable had snapped, nothing kept him in touch with humanity now. For no special reason he took the sugar cookies off of the table, sinking down to the floor, crying his angsty saline tears into them.
With the cookies ruined and the dishes still not done, there was only one thing left to do. He went into his bedroom, sorting through Duke’s things, retrieving the only shotgun available since he had gotten rid of his old one. “This is the time of vengeance and no life is worth saving… I will put in the grave… as many as I can…”
He put on his boots, slammed open the door. Dark clouds whirled overhead, crackling with lightning. It was time for him to kill, and it was time for him to die…
Nerf bullets assailed a thick oak tree in the middle of their yard, discharged from the shotgun. The bullet impact-textures danced around the object as more foam bullets struck, only three were present at any given time.
Nott lifted the garden gnome standing cheerfully in the aloe patch, sat down, and began ramming his pointy head into the fresh mulch, to the tune of heavy metal music from inside his head only. It had begun… he left the gnome sticking hat-deep upside-down in the ground, passed through the yard several times recovering his foam darts. He brushed off bits of grass from each one and began reloading as he stomped out into society.
Nothing was safe. He went into the parking lot of a supermarket, kicking stray shopping carts that careless people hadn’t returned to the designated cart return area, rocking them and pushing them away as startled moms desperately loaded their children and groceries, and drove off recklessly.
He went into a park, began purposely tripping over trash cans with his entire body, tipping them over. He purchased a loaf of bread and returned to the park, wadding bits of bread into dense balls and throwing it to a fluffy white flock of ducks, who eagerly followed each bread ball as it sank down into the pond instead of floating, which it would have, if Nott had not scrunched it up.
He then threw away the bread wrapper in a recycling bin for aluminum only, and took two free newspapers from the front of a store despite the ‘TAKE ONE’ notice.
Citizens knew him, what he could do, and were panicked by his antics. They fled for their lives as he pelted them with all the fury his Nerf darts could convey. A long trail of bright orange darts followed in his wake, absent any blood or bodies from the non-lethal foray, as he Nerfed his way into the city.
Elsewhere, a few hours later, Duke Nukem holstered his weapons, gazing at a street filled with alien goo and alien corpses. “Damn I’m good…” A beautiful babe tried to get his attention, but his loyalty to Nott M. Portent rendered him oblivious to such juicy opportunities for carnal mischief. He walked into the movie store, intent on rewarding himself for such excellent fidelity.
He went immediately to the Action section, giddy as he picked up a 2-in-1 box of the first two Predator movies. “The husband’s gonna love this…” He picked up a few other titles, such as “Army of Darkness,” “Full Metal Jacket,” “DOOM,” and “The Secret Garden.” However, just as he completed his purchase, he heard sirens, saw a panicked civilian carelessly tumble through the glass storefront into a display rack of Blu-ray copies of the movie “300” as streaks of orange flashed by, a furious Nerf barrage.
“Damn, no… it can’t be, we were making such progress…” He ran outside as Nott M. Portent’s genocide crusade rampaged, boots steaming as he pursued the flapping coat-flaps of Nott’s trenchcoat. Police vehicles screeched to a halt across from Nott, who threw a fistful of plastic army soldiers at them. They gasped and ducked as pale and green servicemen scattered across windshields, landing haphazardly on the asphalt. Someone radioed for backup.
Duke hid behind a tree growing out of a median, looking closer as Nott strafed into an alley to reload. He saw the cold sob-tears of genocidal sadness trailing across Nott’s genocidal face. Duke’s ego stung to see his husband in such a dire predicament. Police returned a fierce volley of pistol-fire, which sent bits of rubble flying so thickly that some of them disappeared before they hit the ground, according to the world’s Game Engine’s pre-set limit on the number of rubble objects it could render at any given time.
As the police reloaded, and Nott prepared to fire once more, Duke sprang out. “Wait, let me talk to him.” He approached Nott.
Nott’s shotgunning hands trembled. “D-Duke? Stay back, this is how it ends for me…” A plastic army man fell out of his trench coat pocket.
Duke held his arms out in a placating gesture. “It’s alright, baby. We can talk this out. What’s got you hating the world again?”
Nott rubbed his eyes and nose on his sleeve, sniffling. “I thought you were leaving me too, just like everyone… it’s all the same, no one cares about me…”
Duke gave a weak smile. “Hey now come on, that’s a steaming crock of alien shit, what makes you think that?”
Nott looked up, eyes watery, hands limp at his sides. “Because I’m Nott M. Portent, that’s why…”
Duke approached slowly, arms still outstretched, giving him a big hug. “You are important… to me.”
Nott sniffled. The muscles in his face began to do a curious thing, something they hadn’t done before. He was… could it be he was smiling? The shotgun fell, a Nerf dart discharged harmlessly into the streets. He hugged Duke back, feeling for the first time that the world didn’t need to die, that Coldness and Hatred were for the first time being supplanted… with Warmth and Lovtred.
“I have such Lovtred for you Duke Nukem…” He said, nuzzling into Duke’s big burly shoulder.
“I love me too, baby… now let’s go home. I’m ready to watch some movies together and chew bubble gum… and I’m all outta gum.”
if you leave a shopping cart in the middle of the parking lot instead of moving it to one of those cart corral things then you’re an asshole and i hope one day you accidentally hit a stray shopping cart and see the error in your ways
Notes: SO AFTER READING THIS, I NEED YOU TO LET ME KNOW WHAT YOU THINK METTATON SHOULD CHOOSE, either in tags or reblogs or messages in the inbox! Otherwise I’m making the reader a piece of shit vanilla ass furry and there’s nothing you can do about it.