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Kindness of Strangers

Chapter Text

The smell of gasoline, blood and sweat filled Juliana's nostrils.

 

She grunted as she tried to move, their truck had overturn, Lucho had being in a rush to get back and now she was stuck.

 

"Lucho?" She called and turned her head as much as she could, just to see him halfway out of the windshield, she knew he was dead and that she had no time before he turned.

 

She tried to take off the seatbelt but it didn't work, she could feel the desperation rising on her chest.

 

Suddenly she remembered Sergio, he was in the bed of the truck with the supplies, he was probably dead too.

 

So she now had to worry about two infected, she tried again with the seatbelt but nothing.

 

She thought about Val waiting for the three of them to come back, she had wanted to fix things between them and now she may never have a chance, she thought about her mother, she didn't know if the woman would be able to survive without her.

 

"Fuck!" She exclaimed again after the third try on the seatbelt, she could hear groans and then she saw Lucho starting to move, she pulled again as much as she could.

 

Groans from the outside alerted her that Sergio was close.

 

"Shit!" She said trying to squirm out of the tight embrace of the piece that kept her on her place.

 

Suddenly she hear a gunshot which served for Lucho to finally pull out of the windshield.

 

Slowly and groaning he looked at her.

 

As stuck as she was she chose to fight with the hand that was closer to him she punched him.

 

This made him back off a little but then he was back, it seemed that even in death Lucho was a pain in Juliana's ass.

 

So she punched him again and yelled expecting whoever was stealing the supplies to at least help her.

 

"FUCK OFF, YOU FUCKING ASSHOLE, GET THE FUCK AWAY FROM ME!"

 

For a second she thought everything was over as the yell seemed to just prompt Lucho to try to kill her.

 

But just as he was getting closer and she took a good look at the milky bloodshot eyes, she saw them change from mindless rage to completely look dead.

 

She saw his head fall to the side lifeless to never be up again, she then saw a hand with a butterfly knife make its way towards her, for a moment she flinched and closed her eyes expecting the bloody blade to go through her own skull. But then she felt the seatbelt loosen up and she felt herself fall to her side.

 

She was so confused, in the past few minutes she had been in a car crash the two idiots that were with her were dead and now she was free of the seatbelt thanks to some unknown person.

 

It wasn't until she hear a soft "are you ok?" That she looked at her savior's way.

 

Soft and gentle green eyes met hers, she was surprised and just nodded.

 

"Come on let's get you out of here" the girl said before disappearing from the driver's side.

 

A second later Lucho's body was pulled out of the truck and Juliana made her way out of it too.

 

Once outside she took in her injuries, she had hit her head, she probably had a broken rib and multiple scratches, but otherwise she was ok.

 

She then saw Sergio's body a bullet hole in the middle of his forehead, Juliana winced.

 

"I'm sorry I saw the whole thing and then saw him reanimate, I thought there was a chance there were some survivors so I took him out" the girl explained as she started to pick some stuff from the road; the supplies.

 

"It's ok, it’s just that you made the other one go kind of crazy" Juliana said, taking her saving grace in, sun kissed light brown hair, full lips and a gun strapped to her tight and a riffle of probably military use on her back.

 

The girl was picking the supplies, Juliana groaned "I should fight you for those, it took us a week to get them" she said wincing as she tried to breath.

 

"You could try, but you wouldn't win" the girl said smiling before taking another bag.

 

Juliana frowned and said "I could totally take you down broken ribs and all".

 

The girl stopped and stood up walking towards her, for a second Juliana thought the girl would actually fight her but the she was smiling.

 

"Wouldn't be fair, maybe when you get better" she exclaimed as she looked Juliana up and down, she was a beautiful girl, even with the scratches and cuts.

 

Juliana held her gaze for a second before asking "so you plan to steal my supplies and let me here?"

 

The girl laughed and shook her head "Nope, I was actually planning on taking you to my camping site so you could recover, Doc will take care of you and then we can go to your camp or drop you near there" she explained.

 

"How do you know I'm going to accept that, I don't even know who you are, how can I trust you?" Juliana got defensive.

 

"Well you don't have that many options , you either risk to have a leap of faith with me or stay here waiting for someone to help you, I mean walking back to your camp is out of question" the girl said.

 

Juliana thought about it and  touched her lips with her fingers just to bite on her fingertips, she saw the girl raise an eyebrow, it kind of reminded her of Valentina always getting upset watching her do that, she  immediately put her hand down.

 

"Ok I'll go with you, but I need a way to let my group know I'm ok" she said before walking back to the truck to get her backpack that was now on the side.

 

"We will figure something out, don't worry" the girl reassured her.

 

As they walked to the girl's truck Juliana stopped, her companion did too and then looked at her confused.

 

"Well, before we go can I at least know what´s your name?" She asked.

 

The girl smiled and extended her hand "Alicia Clark", Juliana took a moment before taking the offered hand.

 

"Juliana Valdés" she replied after a second.

 

"Nice to meet you" Alicia said before climbing into her truck.

 

As they drove away and Juliana saw the truck and bodies of Sergio and Lucho disappear on the rearview mirror.

 

She felt bad about the guys but at the same time she was happy she had survived.

 

Her mind then went to a conversation she had with Valentina about people kindness.

 

The blue eyed girl believed that people could still be kind even in the worst moments, Juliana thought that was silly as in a situation like this people would look for themselves and no care about others.

 

Then she looked at Alicia, if it wasn't for her kindness, she would had died in that truck so she guessed Valentina was a bit right there was still kindness of strangers.

 

She smiled and hoped Alicia and Valentina could meet someday.

Chapter Text

Valentina couldn´t stand there and do nothing anymore, she was in the verge of losing her mind, so as the others kept their cool about Juliana, Sergio and Lucho not coming back yet, she  decided  to do something.

 

She climbed into one of the trucks and drove past the gate of the house, she knew Eva was going to kill her if those things outside didn´t killed her before.

 

She drove through the roads, it was so weird how empty they were, it was a desert.

 

When everything had started her dad had decided to take everyone to his vineyard in Rosarito, Tijuana, he had said the place was safe as it was far away from the city and pretty much hidden from anyone, Valentina against her sister´s will had taken Juliana, Lupe and Panchito with them, while at the end they had taken Lucho, Sergio and Nayeli too,   Nayeli had been the first of the group to die, it was the first time she had seen Juliana in survival mode, the way she had killed the infected and then with cold blood proceed to take down Nayeli, it had been a surprise for Valentina but a scare for the rest of the group, she had even hear Lupe said that there was no doubt that Juliana was her father´s daughter, after all the man had been a sicario.

 

But even someone like Juliana could be in danger, she knew the group was going to the north almost the border, so she made her way over there.

 

After what felt like hours she came face to face with the wreck, her heart sank, as she saw the bodies of Sergio and Lucho lying next to each other.

 

She climbed out of her truck and ran over them, she started to cry as she desperately looked around, she checked the truck and there was nothing.

 

She knew she had to be quite Juliana had told her and so had Guille and Eva, but she couldn´t “JULIANA!” she called hoping against hope she was there and alive, for the look of Sergio and Lucho´s bodies they had either died in the wreck and killed, which mean that maybe Juliana wasn´t that hurt and had killed them herself or they were just injured and killed by other people who had taken Juliana.

 

There was the possibility that Juliana had just turned and the others hadn´t see her, she felt her stomach turn, so she called the other girl´s name again.

 

She then hear the distinctive groan of the infected, she could feel her heart beating fast against her ribs, she moved her had to her hip  and noticed that she hadn´t brought the gun with her.

 

She cursed herself as she slowly turned around expecting to see the love of her life turn into some monster, as she did, she noticed it wasn´t her and some relief washed over her.

 

It was soon replaced by fear when she saw that thing throw itself at her, the movement took her by surprise and she felt to the floor with that thing on top of her, she did everything to keep it from biting her.

 

As she felt herself weakening and almost started to accept her faith, she felt it stop moving, she frown it as it let lifeless at the distance she had it and somewhat became heavier.

 

She threw it aside and saw something standing above her, before she could even scream, the person threw itself on top of her and covered her mouth with their hand.

 

She stared into a pair of brown eyes, it was a man covered in what seemed to be blood and he smelled horribly.

 

He pulled his hand away and brought a finger to his lips to keep her from screaming, he then pointed to his left, she looked over and saw at least 5 of those things making their way towards them, the guy moved to the body next to her and pulled his knife out of its head, then he turned it around and opened its stomach.

 

Valentina could only see in horror as the guy got his hand inside the stomach and pulled his hands covered in blood, just to places them in her face, neck and jacket.

 

She would had thrown up, if it wasn´t because she was petrified in fear.

 

Once he was over, he helped her up and softly said “be slow and don´t look at them”, he then started to walk towards the group, that is when she noticed that the group was between she and her truck, she looked at him for a second her heart beating as crazy, as she followed his instructions.

 

She walked slowly, the closer she got the harder her heart beat against her chest.

 

She saw them walk past them hissing lowly, before walking away, once they were far away enough of her, she turned to look at the man that had saved her, he smiled as he make his way to her truck, his dirty hair was pulled back with the own dirt and blood.

 

“Thought you guys would never come” he commented as he stood next to her truck.

 

She looked at him confused as he kept talking “I will take you to Juliana”.

 

This made her forget everything else “Really?!” she said the hopefulness in her voice didn´t even made her flinch, she looked at him who turned his calm demeanor into a weird smirk.

 

“You will get yourself killed so easily” he said, the hope left just as it came and she stared at him now questioning herself.

 

“Do you realize you called her name, so I could be easily lying about her whereabouts in order to get you to go with me?” he continued, she was getting scared more so when he moved towards her.

 

“You wouldn´t had saved me if you had killed all of them” she said, he laughed and raised an eyebrow.

 

“Maybe I´m a psycho who loves to torture people” he said.

 

“How does she looks?” she asked trying to get the upper hand if this was some sort of crazy guy and he just killed people for fun he wouldn´t remember.

 

“Brown eyes, tanned skin, dark brown almost black hair, tattoos, the most interesting the mermaid in the inside of her right arm” he responded looking bored.

 

“If you were a crazy killer you wouldn´t know that” she said trying, she was really worried and scared and she just wanted to see Juliana.

 

“Not really, for example the next person that comes over here I could tell them how you look like, but I bet that you wouldn´t be able to tell them how I look like beyond dirty and that my eyes were brown, because since I told you it´s the only thing you had been staring at” he replied.

 

Valentina gulped and looked over the seat of the driver, the gun was there, but he was standing right next to the door, she could still try, right?

 

“Don´t even think about it, the second you try I could stab you” he said.

 

The girl´s eyes filled with tears, now she remembered Juliana´s words about people being horrible and how in a world like this everyone looked just for themselves, she wanted to kick herself for being so silly, she now was going to die and she would never see Juliana again and tell her she was right, that people were awful.

 

Finally the man spoke again “Valentina you need to toughen up” this made her thought stop.

 

“How do you know my name?” she asked, she hated that her voice sounded so weak.

 

“She is really worried about you and now I know why” he said shaking his head.

 

He then slowly pulled a radio from the pocket of his jacket.

 

“Juls, Alicia, over” he said into the device.

 

A minute later a voice Valentina thought would never hear again came through the device.

 

“Hey morro, what´s up?” she said and Valentina knew it was actually her, so she smiled.

 

The guy smiled “Well after all your team actually came looking for you, well at least one of them” he responded.

 

“Really?” she asked

 

“Yep, would take them over there” he said as he smiled at Valentina who´s eyes were filled up with tears again but this time for a very different reason.

 

“Wait who is it, if it is Eva you could leave her there so the infected do their job” she joked.

 

This made the guy laugh out loud “Nope, I think it´s not her but hey you will see when I take them over there”.

 

“Can I speak with them?” Juliana asked.

 

“Nope, it´s a surprise, let me have this one” he said like a little child.

 

It amazed Valentina how he changed his demeanor so much.

 

“Ok, but hurry your mother is giving me the death stare again and it´s freaking me out” she said.

 

He laughed and the communication was over.

 

He looked at Valentina and then said “I´m sorry that I did what I did but you should be more careful, now let´s go and get you over there so you can reunite with her”.

 

Valentina nodded and climbed on her truck with the guy next to her.

 

“Wait, you know my name and I don´t know yours” she said.

 

He smiled again and stuck his hand out “Nick, Nick Clark”.

 

She shook his hand and smiled before driving towards the place Juliana.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

The truck stopped outside of an abandoned Factory, it looked creepy and the gates were secured, Valentina was surprised to see such a place and realized that she had been in some wort of a bubble not seeing what the world had actually turned into.

 

No wonder Eva, Juliana, Guille and her dad didn´t wanted her out of the vineyard.

 

“Home sweet home” said Nick in a sort of sarcastic way, as they got closer to the huge gates, she saw two people on some sort of vigilante towards, a black man and a short haired woman.

 

Both pointed their guns to the truck and for a moment Valentina thought they were going to shoot until she hear Nick yell “No enemy, just Juls´ people here” he said as he practically hang out of the co-pilot window.

 

The other two lowered their guns and suddenly the sound of the doors opening made Val jump, “Drive” said Nick as he got back inside the truck.

 

She did as she was told the factory somehow seemed even more creepy, nothing to do with the warm atmosphere of the vineyard, when the doors closed behind them Valentina jumped again, Nick guided her to a place to park the truck.

 

Once they jumped out of it, Valentina took in the entire place, there were people, all of them working on something, there were kids too some were playing some others were helping the adults around.

 

“Come on, Val, I take you to my leader” Nick said in a fake alien voice, making her laugh.

They walked into the building, it seemed so dark and gloomy, a woman with long brown hair walked over to them holding what a basket with a bunch of boxes “Hey Nick!, good to see you back in one piece, who´s this one?” she asked, Nick looked into the basked to pull one of the boxes of cookies and took one out.

 

“Valentina Carvajal , she´s from Juls team” he said as he munched in the cookie.

 

Valentina looked at the woman who smiled at her “Ofelia Salazar, nice to meet you” she introduced herself, the younger woman returned the smile and nodded.

 

“If you are looking for Juls she is in the back playing baseball with Ali and Diana and I think Luciana is there too”, the woman said before walking away.

 

Valentina frowned, they were playing while she had been worried all this  days?

 

Nick looked at her and then made his way to where the girl guessed the others were playing.

 

As they reached what seemed to be the green area of the building, the younger Carvajal realized what “playing baseball” mean.

 

She saw Juliana pick a bat and  walk over to a fence and hit the head of one infected, the sick noise the impact of the wooden bat made with the head of the thing, made Valentina´s stomach churn.

 

She hear the laugh of Juliana as the thing fell to the floor and then another voice said “That was close to a homerun you almost smashed all of its skull, this thing has been dead for a while” the girl said as she laughed and high fived Juliana.

 

“But, come on Lisha, show us how is done” the girl said as she pointed to another girl, who walked over to where they were.

 

The almost blonde haired girl, took the bad and to Val´s surprise she made a trick with it, it kind of reminded her of that Twilight scene, where the Cullen´s are playing baseball and Jasper does that trick with the bat.

 

“Huh! Didn´t knew she could do that, I´m impressed” Nick said sounding amazed by the girl and then his and Valentina´s jaws almost hit the floor when with one swift hit the girl cracked the skull of the infected effectively making what was left of its brain come out.

 

“Oh my God!” both Valentina and Nick said at the same time.

 

Cheerful screams filled the air from the people watching, Valentina hadn´t even noticed the others,  as “Homerun!” was yelled by the other girl, Valentina watched Juliana high five the girl with the bat and then gave her a small court, which made the girl laugh.

 

Then Nick spoke “look at that, first butterfly knife tricks and using it like it’s your second nature, now tricks with a bat and smashing skulls like it´s nothing” he really, really sounded impressed and Valentina had to admit she was impressed too and a little bit freaked out about the abilities this girl had.

 

Lisha like the other girl had called her, turned to look at Nick and smiled “What can I say brother, you know that when I set my mind on something until it doesn´t turn into perfection I don´t drop it” she winked and had some sort of cockiness, then she  took a look at Valentina.

 

“Guess you are the one he found?” she asked.

 

Before she could said anything she heard someone call her name and then she was once again in her safe place, better known as Juliana´s neck.

 

Without thinking she wrapped her arms around the younger girl and squeezed which cause a groan of pain coming from Juliana´s lips, a second later she was being pushed back and Lisha was next to Juliana.

 

“You´re ok?” the girl asked and Juliana nodded, then looked at Val.

 

“I bruised my ribs pretty bad and I think playing baseball hadn´t helped” she explained.

 

“Sorry, if I had known” Valentina immediately replied, Juliana just shook her head and smiled.

 

“No problem, just no more hugs for the moment” she said with a smile, which in return made Valentina smile.

 

For a moment they looked at each other and Valentina wished she hadn’t asked for a break, because she really wanted to kiss her.

 

It was Juliana who broke the spell “Well let me introduce you, this is Alicia Clark” Juliana said pointing to Lisha and then in a playful flirty way even batting her eyelashes and putting  both hands together like some sort of fan girl she added “My hero” in a fake dreamy voice.

 

Valentina smiled for a second and then kind of frowned as both girls burst out laughing and Alicia extended her hand “Nice to meet you Valentina, Juliana had talked a lot about you and your group” she said with a smile.

 

Her hand shake was firm, Valentina remembered what her dad used to tell her about handshakes and how you can get an idea of how a person is based on that, according to him this would mean that Alicia had a strong character and wasn´t afraid to show it.

 

They let go of each other´s hands and just as Juliana was going to introduce the others, a really young girl probably in her early teens, rushed towards them “Alicia, the scavengers want to know if the maps are ready” she said.

 

Alicia nodded and then said “Well duty calls, feel at home Val, I´m pretty sure Juliana  can show you around” then she was gone.

 

Valentina looked at her for a moment until she hear Nick sigh “Our fearless leader” he said in a joking way, only to be smacked on the head by another woman who had coming closer to them at some point.

 

“You may be joking Nicholas, but you and all of us  know that for a lot of the people in here she is above your mom, heck even your mom knows that” the young woman said, she then smiled and said “I´m Luciana, Nick´s girlfriend and second in command of the scavengers” she shook Valentina´s hand and then walked away, with Nick following her.

 

Then Juliana spoke “well you just met our leader in command and one of the scavengers and this one is Diana, she is one of the best fighters in here and has mad skills with a pickaxe”.

 

The girl smiled and shook Valentina´s hand before saying “Nice to meet you and now I have to go and make some rounds pretty sure these weren´t the only ones around” she pointed at the four bodies on the floor, Valentina had to look away.

 

For a moment she and Juliana just stood there not really knowing what to say until it downed on her “you spoke as if you were part of them ” she said.

 

Juliana nodded and said “well for as long as I´m here they are practically my team so” she shrugged.

 

Valentina kind of understood and dropped the subject she really didn´t knew how long they would stay there.

 

Juliana showed her around and explain how things worked around the place "So Alicia is actually the leader?" Valentina asked.

 

Juliana nodded "Well Madison kind of pretends she has the last word but everyone around here knows that it comes to both of them to make choices, they have this co-leader thing going, they are mother and daughter, but when it comes to the camp Madison has learned to not see Alicia like a kid and more like just the second leader in the group".

 

"That is weird, I mean I can´t imagine my dad accepting either of us kids take over anything, while he is still around" Valentina said, remembering how León had gotten furious with Juliana, Lucho and Sergio when they ventured out of the vineyard.

 

Juliana laughed and said "Yeah for what I know they were separated for  a while and Alicia made her own group and then Madison, Nick, Strand and the Salazars joined, hence why most of the people in here listen to Alicia even when she is younger, she kind of proved to them that they could trust her to keep them alive".

 

Valentina was impressed "How old is Alicia?".

 

"19" Juliana simply said and Val just could answer with a "Wow", after all the girl was just a year older than Juliana and two years younger that herself.

 

They walked towards and old truck in the other side of the green area and sat in there.

 

“I can´t believe that they let you out on your own” Juliana said after a moment, Valentina bit her lip and looked away, this set off the alarm in the other girl “Val, do they know you are out here?” she asked.

 

Valentina felt like a small child again, like she was reprimanded for scaring her parents “No, they kept saying we should wait that you guys would be back, none of them wanted to risk themselves and I was freaking out, Juls I was going to lose my mind if I stood there and do nothing”.

 

Her eyes filled with tears and she put her head down.

 

Juliana stood and walked over to her “hey, no, Val, don´t cry, it´s ok” she hugged her and then said “then I guess we have to go back as soon as we can, otherwise, they will do something stupid, they are not ready to be out here” Juliana said.

 

It was true the only crazy ones that had been going outside on their group, were her dad, Lucho, Sergio and Juliana, while she, Lucía, Eva, Guille, Renata, Pancho and Lupita just stayed in the house, the only times they had come across, the horrors of the outside was when they were making their way to Rosarito and they had lost Nayeli.

 

“It´s horrible out here” Valentina said sniffling, Juliana hold her tight “I won´t let anything bad happen to you Val, I will protect you, I promise” she said.

 

Both girls stood there holding each other for a while, both worried about what the futures hold for them.

 

But both knowing they would do anything to protect and care for the person they were holding at the moment.