The firebombs dropped across Los Angeles ignited the skies in an orange haze, staining the dark sea in a carpet of fire. There was barely enough time to fully take in what was happening since the whole group were all rushed towards the beach to begin moving their belongings onto Abigail. Strand had already gotten onto a Zodiac inflatable boat towards Abigail with Nick, Alicia, Ofelia and Daniel on board, leaving Chris, Erin, Travis and Madison back on the shore with their belongings.
Just as everything was ready, infected started making their way onto the beach, the group quickly picking up stones and sticks to defend themselves but Erin held them back. "Go, I'll hold them off," Erin told Madison as she handed over her backpack and weapons – apart from her katana.
Travis placed his arm in front of Erin, stopping her from going anywhere. "Erin, this is not the time to be a hero! This isn't a goddamn video game!"
Erin glared at Travis, the fire burning inside her eyes on full display. "How do you think I survived in the city without you or anyone to help me, huh? I did just that – survive. Now go, and hurry up." She watched Madison and Travis go back to loading up the boat before she turned back towards the infected, removing her katana from its sheath and let out a loud battle cry before sprinting towards the infected. Using her katana, she slashed the infected's throats, kicking them away as they went down before moving onto another.
Once all infected that surrounded the group lay at Erin's feet, she blew away a strand of hair that got in her way before turning back towards the group, all of whom had their mouths dropped open. "What?"
The group said nothing as they watched Erin place her katana back into its sheath as Nick returned with the Zodiac boat, quickly ushering everyone on board with their belongings before returning back to the Abigail. Once they were all on board the Abigail, they began their long journey into the unknown.
Erin sat down on one of the chairs, her knees tightly against her chest. Nick sat down beside her, and she rested her head on his shoulder and smiled softly as she felt him press a kiss to her forehead.
"I saw you on the beach, when did you become such a badass?" Nick murmured in her ear, his arms wrapping around Erin's body.
Erin smiled a little, leaning into Nick's embrace. "I've always been a badass, only now have I had the opportunity to show off my skills."
The next morning, Erin was sat down on one of the couches inside and watched everyone around her as she cleaned her sword and sharpened it, making sure that it was always ready to use to attack anyone and everyone who got in her way. After she was satisfied with her sword, she moved onto her knife and began cleaning and sharpening that too.
"Can I help you with that?" A voice asked, the space beside Erin sinking down with the weight of someone sitting beside her. Instead of her best friend like Erin had hoped, it turned out to be Chris.
"Va te faire enculer," Erin grumbled under her breath, not bothering to look up from her knife.
"I said 'go fuck yourself', Chris." Erin finally looked up at Chris to give him a cold glare before going back to her knife.
Chris sighed, rubbing his temple with his fingers. "Erin, you need to stop speaking in French, nobody on this boat can understand you."
"J'ai parlé français avant de parler anglais, le français est ma langue maternelle," Erin hissed out before rolling her eyes. "I spoke French before I spoke English, French is my mother tongue."
Erin sighed, handing her knife over to Chris before picking up her sword once again. "Y'know, I used to think of myself one way, but after this... I am something else. I'm still me, I think. But, that's not what everyone else thinks. Everyone sees me as the monster, but I'm nothing close to one. But you know what they say; not all monsters to monstrous things."
Chris frowned, sharpening Erin's blade. "Why would you be seen as a monster?"
Erin shrugged her shoulders, her eyes never meeting Chris's. "I slit a man's throat and watched him die with the knife you're holding, I've done some pretty fucked up things to get myself here and if that isn't the archetype of a monster, I don't know what is."
Before Chris had a chance to reply, Erin watched Nick walk outside and after placing her sword back with Chris, she walked after him and stood behind him. "Did you mean it?"
Nick frowned, turning towards Erin. "Mean what?"
"When you said "I love you" back in LA, did you mean it?"
"Answer the fucking question, Nick. Did you or did you not mean what you said to me?"
"Who's ready for dinner?" Madison called from inside, causing Erin to force back a scream of "fuck off" and place on her best smile to pretend everything was okay.
"This isn't over, Clark. You got let off, but next time you better answer the fucking question." Erin snapped as she folded her arms over her chest and stormed back inside. She sat down at the table beside Alicia and pretended everything was okay, with a huge smile on her face, it looked like everything was okay but in Erin's world – nothing was ever just okay.
She heard the splash from outside, quickly noticing that Chris was missing. Her smile dropped as she walked back outside, just to see Nick dive into the sea after him. She sighed as she watched the pair swimming together, shaking her head as she moved to sit down on the steps, tucking stray pieces of hair behind her ear.
The sound of the infected made her stand up, instantly fearing for Nick's safety. She waited for those few tense minutes until she saw Nick walk back onto the boat, Erin instantly wrapping her arms around his soaking body. "Don't you dare do that to me again, Clark. You scared the fuck out of me."
"Don't start celebrating yet, Erin. Whoever did that to the other boat, they're coming back."
First chapter of Make a Shadow is done! Hope you guys enjoyed it – this story will have a slightly darker tone than Love Me to Pieces had but it's a zombie apocalypse so what did you expect?