There’s not much room for thought when you’re fighting for your life.
Petyr Baelish realizes this now. (Whoever said, ‘Your life flashes before your eyes,’ is a liar. All that crosses Petyr’s mind is survival.) He had avoided dangerous predicaments throughout his life, even throughout the breakout, save for the single incident when Brandon Stark left his skin marred with a scar. He avoided them up until recently, at least. The number of men in his employ were dwindling and he was left with no choice but to act as one of his own until he could recover the numbers he lost.
But when he felt the skin of his arms being torn, all his thoughts left him save for one. ‘I can’t die here.’
He had tried calling for Dontos - the man who was his partner for this retrieval - but the drunkard had either fled or was dragged off by another infected. Idiot. It was his fault Petyr was in this situation. It was supposed to be a silent kill but the drunkard couldn’t keep his ramblings quiet. If he had just stayed quiet or even passed out…
But still, there’s no time for such thoughts, not when there’s blood on his shirt and it’s all his. He can feel the tears where nails bit into his worn out shirt because it burns. But that he can recover from, that he can survive. It’s the infected’s bite that concerns him the most, that would doom him.
He reaches for Dontos’ gun and it gives his attacker an opening; Petyr can feel the dead man’s rank breath against his neck. But he finds the pistol and shoves the infected off of him, but the man (or rather, the shell of a man) doesn’t go without a fight. The infected man leaves three deep scratches in Petyr’s neck but Petyr knows he can survive that too. He pulls the trigger, doesn’t stop until the pistol falls silent.
The sounds were bound to attract more unwanted attention, Petyr knew that even in his battered state. Discarding the gun and favoring the switchblade in his pocket, he made his way to an abandoned building he and Dontos had passed by not far from where they were attacked. But the wounds render him unable to travel much further, unable to remain conscious for much longer.
He pushes his back against a corner, using the darkness to his advantage in the offchance that someone wouldn’t notice him if they were just passing by. It won’t be long until an infected comes his way, but he had hoped he would at least be able to fight until his last breath. Then again, he was never much of a fighter and the amount of blood triggered his uneasiness with the sight and smell.
His thoughts - his more vulnerable ones - wander to the unmistakable image of a Tully and he opens his lips to say a name, but he stops himself and thinks again, ‘I can’t die here.’
But the dark tempts him and soon enough, he fades into black.
That’s all it’s supposed to be, after all, there’s only so much they’ve got stockpiled, with mouths to feed and food not magically replacing itself. She heads the team with Rattleshirt because she’s bored, stir crazy, and unwilling to let that man out of her sight on long runs outside of the base.
Dalla breathes in the night air, rancid and smelling strongly of the dead now. All of London stank lately, no surprise, and she has to think that France had been far better; but France doesn’t have her family, doesn’t have the people who need her.
She turns around at Rattleshirt’s title, rolling her eyes, mouth pursed. “What?” How many times has she told him to call her that.
He grins, the bone necklace creaking like dry leaves. “Man here. Crow. You might want him.”
Crows are anyone not of their group, a code word that had developed and never gone away.
“And what would I want with a dead body?” She huffs, patience wearing thin, and glanced over her shoulder at the others in their group.
A laugh, and it makes her skin crawl. “He’s not dead.”
Her hands tighten on her shotgun. That has her interested now. She walks towards him, stepping inside the blown out window of the warehouse, and sees what must have caught Rattleshirt’s eyes: feet sticking out. Peering into the darkened corner, she notices too that the man isn’t dead. His chest rises and falls through the blood crusted shirt. Slashes on his arm and neck, but no bite marks, else she’d put a bullet in him now. One less walker to deal with. A modestly attractive man, slightly older than she, with some greying in his hair at the temples she can see beneath the dirt.
Rattleshirt’s a presence at her back, and Dalla reaches forward to nudge the man with her boot. “Hey you.”