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For the One You Love

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XxX Sophomore Year XxX

The evening had been beautiful and Zed thought it would be nice to end their date at the Zombie Light Garden. And it was. Their night was perfect. He decided it was probably time to get her home so they started the short trek back to her house. Their walk home was cut short however.

Two men stood leaning against the barrier on the Seabrook side out of view from the Zombietown side. As soon as the giggling couple walked past the wall, Zed was cracked in the head with a baseball bat. He collapsed to the ground. Addison screamed and scrambled to his side. Zed's Z-band vibrated wildly on his wrist, his groans of pain sounding more and more like growls. With such a hard blow to the head with his life threatened, his body switches into survival mode and his Z-band protests to keep him stable. Addison didn't care, she hugged him to her, a vein attempt to protect him.

"A human?" One of them chuckled. "What in the world are you doing out so late with a zombie little girl? Shouldn't you be home with mommy and daddy?" He mocked, they circled the teens on the ground. Addison looked up at them through her watery eyes, she held Zed's head protectively against her chest. He was groaning, growling and holding his the back of his skull in pain.

She glared at the men with hot tears streaming down her cheeks. One of them drug the baseball bat behind him as he walked, the other had a crossbow casually propped on his shoulder. She guessed it would be quieter than a gun shot so they'd have more time to get away.

"How can you be so heartless?!" She finally screamed at them. Both men laughed at her statement.

"We are taking care of the problem! These monsters are the heartless ones! Take away the Z-band and they'll eat your brains without second thought." The one with the bat said as he came closer. Addison flinched away and tightened her hold on Zed.

"It's people like you that are the monsters." She responded with hate in her tone.

The man scoffed and grabbed Addison by the arm, yanking her away from Zed. "No! Let go of me! Zed!" She screamed. Zed held one eye open since the other had blood running into it and his jaw clenched, his hands shook as he reached an arm towards her outstretched one but they were too far apart.

"Addy!" He yelled, his voice distorted and low. "Let her go!" He growled out. Addison struggled as hard as she could against the man's grip on her arm to get away. The man with the crossbow stepped into view a few feet away.

"Shut up Rotter!" He said like it was poison coming from his mouth.

"I don't know," the man holding onto Addison drawled, grabbing her by the waist to pull her against him. Zed snarled loudly in protest. "she's kinda pretty. Maybe we should show you how much better humans can be." Addison felt like puking. He leaned down to kiss her but she pushed and shoved against him as hard as she could, until finally getting the angle to knee him in the crotch.

He hunched over in pain while still gripping her arm. "You little bitch!" He exclaimed before back handing her across the face, sending her to the ground.

"Addison!" Zed called to her. She didn't move for a few seconds but then she lifted her head to meet eyes with his darkened ones. He mouthed a word to her. 'Run.' She gasped in a shaky breath. How could he ask her to do that? She'd never leave him alone like this. She shook her head at him and his expression was begging her.

"Stupid zombie lover! Let's just break your little heart and kill your beloved monster!" The man she'd just debilitated yelled. The other man with the crossbow smiled wide and took it off his shoulder to aim at Zed. Her heart stopped. She scrambled to her feet and ran as fast as she could. The world was moving in slow motion. The man pulled the trigger. The arrow flew at its grounded zombie target for a kill shot straight through the skull.

Addison leapt forward. Her body blocking the arrow's path. Protecting her love. The arrow pierced her back through her chest, she shrieked from the searing pain as blood splattered everywhere, included over Zed.

"Nooooo!" She heard Zed scream before she could even hit the dirt.

"Oh shit!" The two men cursed. Killing a zombie was one thing, but a human would definitely bring trouble. Zed turned to them and got up onto his knees, finding a large rock nearby and positioned it in front of him on the ground. He raised his wrist and smacked his Z-band against it. The men stiffened before turning and sprinting to get away. They thought he was trying to destroy his Z-band to eat them, but in reality he was trying to reset it. After the second hit, it worked. The screen finally read ONLINE.

Zed clumsily scrambled to Addison's side, ignoring his own pain and cradling her in his arms, tear streaming down his face, frantically screaming her name. "Addison! Addison! Addy, please!" He cried. "Say something! Stay with me! Somebody help!" He screamed into the darkness.

Addison coughed, the metallic taste telling her she wasn't in good shape. "Zed?" She whispered, her voice raspy and rough. Sharp pain shooting through her with every breath. He cupped her cheek and tried to give her a smile even with his teary eyes.

"I'm right here Baby! Stay with me ok?" He told her shakily.

"A-are you-" she coughed again, "h-hurt?" She finally stutters out. Zed lets out a breathy laugh.

"No. But I should be." He let his smile fade as a sob crept up his throat. He hugged her to his chest. "Why did you do that?! This should have never happened to you!" He sobbed. Addison lifted a shaky hand to his hair, scratching his scalp affectionately.

"Y-you need a haircut." She whispered. Zed couldn't bring himself to laugh again. She was trying to distract him. He was going to lose her. His heart was shattering into a million pieces. He pulled back to look at her face, her hand still in his hair.

"I'm so sorry Addy. I'm so so sorry." He said, she wasn't going to be able to go to their senior homecoming dance with him, or make it to the cheer championships next week, or even finish high school for that matter, all because of him. It's all his fault she was going to die. His sobs worsened but he couldn't just give up on her. He had to try. Maybe if he could just get her some help, she could pull through. He shifted Addison in his arms so he could dial on his Z-band.

He call the second speed dial he had saved, since Addison wouldn't really be a smart waste of a phone call right now.

"If you're calling to tell me all the gooey details of your date with Addison, then my answer is no." Eliza ranted over the speaker of Zed's Z-band. Addison giggled and sent herself into a coughing fit that made her whimper in pain. Zed hugged her for comfort.

"Eliza! It's an emergency! I don't have time to explain!" Zed exclaimed in his panic. There was a short pause like Eliza was processing what he just said.

"What's happening, Zed?! Are you alright??" Eliza demanded.

"It-It's Addy. Oh god, Eliza. There's so much blood. Please, send help. We're just outside the barrier." Zed said more quietly through his crying.

"I'm sending Zombie Patrol-" Eliza started.

"No! An ambulance! She needs a doctor! We were jumped!" Zed exclaimed.

"Oh thank god! I thought it was you!" Eliza exclaimed back, Zed clenched his teeth. "I'll send both. I'll be there soon!" The line disconnected.

Zed returned his full attention to Addison, her hand was resting on his chest, directly over his heart, a small smile playing on her lips. She leans forward and presses her ear there, listening to the fainting beating. Her eyes flutter closed.

"I-I love you Zed." She whispered out. Zed kisses the top of her head.

"I love you too Addison. You're gonna be ok." He whispered back. She stayed there unmoving with her head on his chest. If she wanted to listen to his heartbeat as something to focus on, he'd sit there quietly until help arrived. But then her hand went limp and fell to her lap. He pulled her back frantically.

"Addy?! Addy?! No no no! Wake up Addy! You have to stay awake Baby! Please!" He begged through his tears, shaking her lightly to wake her. "Open your eyes Addison! You can't leave me like this!" She wasn't responding.

He laid her down and bent down to her chest. He couldn't hear anything. He was panicking again. He placed his hands over her wounded chest and started CPR compressions. After counting to 30, he gave her 2 breaths then started again when he got no response. He could hear the sirens in the distance but they were too far away.

"Zed! Addison!" He heard Eliza exclaim as she ran towards them, he ignored her as he continued counting. "Oh god." Eliza knelt down and petted Addison's hair gently for comfort. "Can I do anything?" Zed was panting, working as hard as he could to make sure her heart doesn't stop beating. 2 more breaths. As he prepped to start compressions again. He breathed.

"Check her pulse." Eliza did as she was told, placing 2 fingers against her neck.

"I got it! It's faint, but it's there! Zed, you did it!" She exclaimed excitedly. Zed just held onto Addison's hand and pressing it to his forehead.

"I haven't done anything but put her in danger!" Zed cried. Eliza scrubbed her face at his words, determined to keep her friend alive. She took off her jacket and balled it up before gently placing it over Addison's wound and pressed down, knowing pressure need to be kept to prevent further bleeding.

"Snap out of it, Zed! Addy needs you right now!" She said sternly. Zed looked up at her with wide eyes but then nodded as he returned to focus on Addison. He checked her pulse again and sure enough the faint beating pulsed against his fingers. He held her hand tightly. Her fingers twitched in his.

"Help is coming Addy." He whispered to her. "Hang in there."

The ambulance skidded to a stop and the medics rushed to the bleeding girl with 2 zombies over her. One medic took over putting pressure from Eliza while the other dug out a breathing mask from the med bag. A third medic prepping a stretcher.

"What happened?" The pressure medic asked Zed.

"Two men attacked us. She was shot with a crossbow." He said. The medics and Eliza stared at him in shock.

"They shot her?" The other medic asked skeptically. Eliza fumed.

"How dare you ask him something like that! Just because he's a zombie-" Zed cut her off with a hand raised and head dropped.

"They were aiming for me, but she jumped in front of it." He explained further. Everyone got quiet. Eliza stood and walked around to hug Zed around the neck, her own tears now brimming her eyes. Her best friend could have died. If the arrow had hit him, there's no doubt he'd be dead instantly. Addison saved him. Eliza pulled back and gently placed her hand over Addison's that was held by Zed. Silently thanking her.

Moments later, the Zombie Patrol arrived and took both Zed and Eliza away from Addison as the medics worked to get an explanation of what happened. Zed told them everything, a description of the men and everything that happened, trying not to leave out any details or breakdown in front of the officers. With sad expressions, they let the teens return to the dying human, daughter of their chief.

Addison was being wheeled to the back of the ambulance, Zed ran to catch up holding her hand as they rolled her. Eliza instead went to the growing group of zombies watching from the Zombietown, her mother had followed her out of the house to see what was wrong. Eliza hugged her and told her fellow zombies what happened.

"Zed? Zed!" Eliza heard his dad pushing through the crowd calling, Zoey being dragged behind him by the hand. She made her way to him. "Eliza! Where's Zed?! Everyone is saying he's dead!" His dad panicked, Zoey has tears running down her cheeks. Eliza grabbed his arms and shook her head.

"N-no, not Zed." She told him. His eyes widened.

"W-what?" He questioned. Eliza's eye were watering again. It could have so easily been him.

"Addison-" Eliza whispered. Zevon gasped.

"Is Addison ok?! No! Not Addison!" Zoey cried. Zevon picked Zoey up and hugged her tight. Eliza went on to explain everything to them.

"ADDISON!!!" Zed's head shot up to see Addy's parents rushing towards them. Her mother sobbing and screaming her name. His face twisted in pain as he stepped out of their way when they reached her, his head hanging in shame that he hadn't been able to protect their daughter.

Missy ran her fingers along her cheekbone but Addy didn't move. She turned to Zed and he expected a slap, punch, kick, something to that effect but was shocked when she threw her arms around his neck to pull him down for a hug like a mother would a son. He hadn't felt a motherly hug like this since he was little, before his Mom died. Tears pricked his eyes. After a moment, he slowly hugged her back for a good minute.

They continued to roll Addison to the back of the ambulance, her parents and Zed following close behind. They loaded Addison up and Zed stepped on the back of the truck to get in but one of the medics held a hand up to stop him.

"You can't come. There can only be one passenger and parents come first." The medic said, waving for Addison's Mom to climb up. Zed's head dropped with disappointment but understood, as he stepped aside for her. Missy looked up over her shoulder to Dale and they exchanged a look.

"Zed can take my place." She said. Zed's eyes shot up to meet hers in disbelief. Dale wrapped an arm around Missy's shoulders and the two of them smiled at Zed, giving him a nod to go ahead. "We will follow behind in a patrol car." Zed smiled back and climbed into the ambulance, immediately grabbing Addison's hand to giving it a soft kiss.

The whole ride to the hospital was quiet. The medic worked in silence to make sure Addison's vitals didn't drop or her condition worsen. They had been able to get the bleeding to stop for the time being and hooked her up to an IV for fluids. Zed just sat there holding her hand and prayed to Z or whatever deity was out there that she pulled through this.

They pulled up to the hospital and were quickly whirled into the ER. Rushing past the front desk and many sets of doors. Addison's parents were right behind them as promised. There was a lot of yelling and scrambling around by a lot of people. He just ran alongside the stretcher holding onto Addy's hand. Suddenly, he felt a light squeeze and his eyes shot to her face.

"Z-zed." He saw her mouth move in a faint whisper. "Zed." She was a little louder. He squeezed her hand back. Leaning down so she could see his face.

"I'm right here Baby! I'm right here." He gave her a smile, though his eyes were watering. But then he was stopped and his hand ripped from hers. "H-hey!" He exclaimed, her parents were both beside him now and the nurse man held up his hands to explain that they were taking her into surgery and they couldn't pass that point but Addy was yelling for him.

"Zed! Zed!!!" She screamed fighting against the nurses trying to restrain her from turning to look back for him.

"Let me talk to her first! Please!" Zed begged, seeing the fight she was giving them. The nurse turned and saw the same before sighing and stepping aside to let him through. Zed gave him a thanks before running to her side. She was kicking and screaming and he could see her chest was bleeding again.

"Addy! Addy! Hey!" He yelled over her and pushed the nurses aside so he was at her forefront. When she heard him, she quieted down and focused on his face. She was breathing heavy, raspy breaths from her frantic thrashing and her brows knitted together he guessed from the pain. He held her hand and she grabbed desperately at it with her other.

"It's ok, they're going to make you better! You gotta let them work ok?" She searched his eyes for a moment before nodding. He leaned in and kissed her forehead then rested his against hers. Both of them squeezing their eyes shut. "I'll be here when you wake up ok?" She hummed her agreement as she released her hold of his hand and look up at him with scared eyes. He smiled down at her. "You're gonna be fine. I love you."

"I love you too." She whispered. Then she was being wheeled away from him again.

He stood there and watched her until she was behind the swinging doors out of sight, then kept standing there for several minutes after that. It wasn't until Missy placed a hand on his shoulder, effectively snapping him out of his daze that he realized what he was doing. He look over at her, her eyes puffy from crying but she was putting on a brave face. He was sure his face probably looked similar.

"Come on dear. Let's go sit down in the waiting room." She told him gently. He nodded and followed her to the tiny room with plenty of seating. Dale was standing looking out the window on his phone.

"I don't care if we have to go door to door! We are going to find those bastards for what they've done to my daughter and her boyfriend!" He exclaimed. There was a pause. "Good, keep me updated." He hung up before turning towards them. He walked over to Zed with a sad expression and laid a heavy hand on his shoulder.

"We are going to find them and they will pay for what they've done. Who knows how many zombies have suffered at their hands as well." His face turned away unreadable for a moment but he quickly shifted back to a softer kinder one. "Thank you for being there for her. If you hadn't acted so quickly, she may have been dead already." Saying the words seemed to constrict his throat. He cleared it and excused himself to return to looking out the window.

Missy turned Zed to face her again. She took note of the blood still covering his body and clothes.

"We should get you cleaned up." She said. Zed just nodded his head and followed her to the bathroom. "Wash up and I'll go find something for you to change into."

Zed turned on the water and splashed it over his face. He gripped the sides of the sink with his head hanging over it and glanced up at himself through his bangs. He looked like a mess. But poor Addy. How could he have let this happen to her? It was supposed to be him! She should be the one virtually unharmed and him fighting for his life! But who was he kidding, she saved his life. If she hadn't jumped in the way, he'd have an arrow through the brain with no hope of survival.

His knuckles were white from gripping the porcelain. But he let it go before he could break anything. He scrubbed his face and washed all the visible skin that was stained with dry blood, either Addison's or his own he wasn't sure.

When he finished he looked back at his reflection. He still looked like shit, but oh well he guessed. Just then he heard a knock on the door and Missy was here with some clothes to change. He did as he was told and changed into the white t-shirt and grey sweatpants she'd handed him before returning to the waiting room.

He threw his bloody coveralls onto a chair and plopped down onto one next to Missy who patted his hand resting on his thigh like an encouraging mother would before returning to her phone calls to inform family of the situation. Zed rested his head against the wall behind him, now remembering the baseball bat blow to the back of his head from the sharp pain at contact. He hissed in a breath and his hand instinctively flew up to the spot.

Both Missy and Dale immediately turning in his direction at the sound. He pulled his hand away to look at it and blood coated his fingers.

"Oh my god Zed dear! I didn't know you were hurt!" Missy exclaimed grabbing his arm.

"Yeah, I guess I forgot about it." Zed confessed, it was understandable with all the adrenaline he'd felt to save Addy.

"You need that to be looked at!" She stood to go find a nurse. Dale knelt in front of Zed.

"Was it the bat? How bad does it hurt?" He asked. Zed nodded before speaking.

"Yeah. It hurts really bad to touch it." He said but replaced his hand there for pressure to stop the bleeding, his face twisting in pain.

"Don't press too hard until a doctor takes a look." Dale instructed, Zed nodded and lighted up.

Missy returned moments later with a nurse who looked at the back of Zed's head and said he would need some stitches. She led Zed to a room and told him to sit on the exam table while she got the necessary tools. She returned shortly after and got straight to work.

XxX

13. 13 stitches were now in his head. 'What an unlucky number.' He thought to himself. Once she was done, she grabbed a doctor from the hall to take a look and he gave him some pain medicine and a prescription for after he left.

"Thank you." Zed thanked both of them. His usual cheerfulness dulled with worry for Addison. He couldn't really focus on much. His thought drifting to her every chance they got. He headed back to the waiting room and found it much fuller than when he'd left.

First, his dad and Zoey rushed him as soon as he was in view.

"Thank god you're ok!" Zevon exclaimed hugging him son tightly, Zoey also wrapped around his lower torso crying. Zed patted his dad's back and placed a gentle hand in his little sister's hair.

"Yeah, I'm good. Addison though..." Zed trailed. Zevon pulled back to look him in the face.

"I'm so sorry son." He said sincerely. Zed nodded, trying not to cry anymore, not in front of all these people. He looked around and saw all eyes were on him. Eliza, Bonzo and Bree all with teary expressions towards him, Bucky and the Aceys huddled together, and even Principal Lee and Coach were there paused in a conversation with Addy's parents to give him a sad look.

"I'm, uh, just gonna sit down, for a while." He said nervously. He wasn't sure how to act or feel. Should he be happy there were so many people here to support Addison and himself? Should he feel guilty they're all here in the middle of the night because of him? Do they think it's his fault this happened to Addison? He sure did. He plopped back into his seat from before and just closed his eyes as he gently laid his head against the wall.

The low murmurs resumed in the room as everyone continued their conversations. He felt the seats beside him fill as someone takes them. Then he feels hands on both his forearms. He opens his eyes to see Bonzo on one side and Bree on the other, Eliza standing close by.

"We're glad you're ok." Bree told him shakily as tears threatened to fall. Zed gave her a sad smile. "And Addy is going to be fine." She was trying so hard not to cry but was failing miserably. Bonzo stood and pulled Bree out of her seat and into a comforting hug as she sobbed into his chest. Zed grabbed her hand and gave it a reassuring squeeze.

"She's gonna make it." He said. She smiled through another sob and returned to Bonzo's chest. Eliza took the seat Bonzo was sitting in as the other couple walked away.

"How're ya holdin' up?" Eliza asked, knowing he was beating himself up over this whole thing. Zed leaned back again and tried closing his eyes.

"I'm exhausted, my head hurts, my girlfriend could be dying and everyone would blame me for it. I'm doing peachy." He replied dryly. Eliza sighed, she could sympathize with him. She'd probably think the same if she was in his situation.

"No one's blaming you Zed." He peeked an eye open and raised a brow to say, 'oh really?' So she continued. "You couldn't predicted those guys would have jumped you. And you could be the one dead right now. Addison is one of the bravest and most selfless people I've ever met. And I'm so grateful you two were there together when this happened." Eliza had tears rolling down her face. Zed sat forward and gave her his full attention. Eliza never cried. "She saved you because that's how much she loves you. She'd give up her own life if it meant you had one more day." She wiped her eyes. "I'm 100% sure that she will fight to survive, if only, just to be with you."

The corners of Zed's lips tugged upward. He knew she was right. His Addy was a fighter and she was going to be ok. He gave Eliza a hug.

"Thanks. I needed to hear that." He whispered in her ear. She smiled into his shoulder. After a moment, they pulled back and she wiped her face again.

"What are friends for?" She said sarcastically. Zed chuckled.

They all sat there for a couple hours, the others came and gave Zed their condolences and he thanked them politely. The whole time he was fighting the urge to sleep from the pain meds the doctor gave him. He didn't want to miss if any news came of Addison's surgery. He wanted to be the first person she saw when she woke up.

He sat with a sleeping Zoey wrapped around his neck, his own eyes drooping and his head occasionally nodding forward before he'd snap it back. Finally, Missy came over and sat down beside him, a pillow and blanket in hand.

"Zed, honey, you should really get some sleep. You've been through a lot this evening." She told him gently. Zed shook his head but his eyes were barely able to hold open, giving away his true exhaustion.

"I, can't. Addison might, wake up." His sentence came out broken, the pain medicine leaving him dopey.

"I won't let you miss anything, I promise." Missy told him quietly, she carefully unwound Zoey's arms from his neck and took her over to Zevon who gladly held his daughter while she slept. Zevon gave her a thankful smile before she returned to Zed, propping the pillow behind his head and draping the blanket over him. Within seconds, soft snores were escaping him as he couldn't fight sleep any longer.

XxX

Zed started arousing from his deep sleep by someone lightly shaking him.

"Zed~ Zed~" He heard a voice hum.

"Mmmmhmmm...?" He groaned without opening his eyes, trying to turn over to the side away from the pestering. Whoever it was giggled.

"It's time to get up Zed." The woman's voice said softly. "The doctor said Addison will be ready to wake up soon!~" She hummed. The mention of her name jolted Zed upright.

"Addy?! I'm up! I'm up!" He exclaimed rubbing his eyes. He looked around and found it was Missy who woke him up, and the waiting room was empty other than them and Dale. "Did I miss her?! Where is she?!" Zed panicked, rushing to stand but fell back from his dizziness.

"Relax dear, I promised I wouldn't let you miss anything!" She said with a giggle. Zed rubbed his head and eyes to try waking up fully. Missy continued. "The doctor just came to tell us Addy's surgery went great! She had a pierced lung, but she was lucky that no main vessels were damaged. They have her in a recovery room and she'll be waking up soon!" Zed smiled wide.

"So she's gonna be ok?" He asked hopeful. Missy nodded.

"They said her chances are very high! She's going to stay for observation a few days to make sure everything is going smoothly then she will be cleared to go home." Dale interjected. Zed couldn't stop smiling but then it faded as he looked around the room again.

"Where is everyone? Have they already went back to see her?" A ping of disappointment deflated his chest. He wanted to be the first. Missy giggled and shook her head.

"No no dear! They all went for breakfast! She hasn't had anyone back to see her yet." Missy assured him. He took in a deep breath of relief and his smile returned.

"When can I go see her?" Zed asked, standing slower so he wouldn't have a dizzy spell again. Missy stood beside Dale who put his arm around her waist.

"We are going back now." Dale said, extending his arm for Zed to lead the way. Zed has a skip in his step for the first time since all this happened. After going through a few more sets of double doors and a couple hallways later, they were in front of Addison's recovery room.

Zed's hand grabbed the doorknob but he hesitated turning it. What if Addison was awake and mad at him for everything? He felt a hand on each of his shoulders, he glanced back over each and found both Missy and Dale giving him reassuring smiles. He sighed and psyched himself up to open the door, and he did.

The door swung open and two nurses heads looked up at the new presences in the doorway. When the one closest to them stood up straight, Addy came into view. Zed sucked in a shaky breath. She had tubes and wires covering her arms and she even had tubes stuck up her nose. He slowly walked forward, one of the nurses beckoned him towards he was an extended arm. He stepped beside her and she lifted Addison's hand slightly to rest it in his. He looked at her for reassurance that this was ok, she smiled up at him then turned and pressed a few button on the screen behind her.

"Go ahead and start talking to her. We'll just be continuing to check vitals while she's waking up." The nurse told him kindly, stepping out of his way so he was the closest and most intimate with Addison. He leaned over her and gently brushed her white bangs away from her eyes with his free fingers.

"Hey Addy. It's time to wake up." He said softly. He saw her lip twitch slightly. His doing the same. "Come on Baby, I can't wait to see you." He teased, Addison groaned and tried to move her head but barely budged an inch. "Can you open your eyes for me?" He asked, seeing if she could hear him. It seemed like she was having to really concentrate but she was able to pry her eyes open.

"Zzzeeeddd." She slurred out his name. He smiled wide.

"Hey! Yeah, I'm here!" He squeezed her hand and leaned down to kiss her forehead. "That's my girl!" He praises her efforts. Then her parents came around the other side.

"Addy! Hi Honey!" Missy cooed with teary eyes, rubbing the little bit of empty skin on her forearm.

"Mmoomm? Ddaadd?" She finally got out.

"Yes, we're here dear!" Missy said, hugging Dale beside her. The nurse brought over some water.

"Try not to talk too much, Addison. Drink lots of water ok?" The nurse instructed. Addison lazily nodded and Zed helped her sip out of the straw. She sighed heavily after her big gulp.

"Better?" Zed teased with a big smile as he sat the cup aside. She smiled at him and nodded.

The rest of the day was mostly just visitors filing in and out, checking up on her and showing their support. Missy and Dale made sure the hospital knew that Zed was welcome to stay with her like they would no matter what the visitor count was. He sat beside her bed holding her hand the whole time. Only relinquishing their contact to eat or hug family and friends. Even though Addison kept telling Zed she wasn't hungry, he still made sure she at least drank some broth for calories.

Zevon had brought back an overnight bag for Zed and Zoey giving him, in her words, 'the biggest hug she has.' When she was told she couldn't hug Addison very tight, she said she'd save the big one for when she's better but for now she'd get a tiny one. His family were the last visitors so once they left, it was just them and her parents. Zed excused himself to the bathroom to change for the night and brush his teeth.

"Will you be ok if we go home to sleep since Zed is staying overnight?" Missy asked Addison, kissing the top of her head affectionately. Addison nodded happily.

"Yeah I'll be fine! You guys go get some rest!" She smiled brightly at them. Zed could hear everything from the attached bathroom. He wasn't sure if his heart could melt but was sure it did from her selflessness. He finished up and walked back into the room. Her parents kissed her goodbye and Missy hugged Zed while Dale shook his hand.

"Remember to take your medicine too Zed!" Missy called before they left. Addison's brows furrowed. They hadn't had a lot of time to talk with just them. Zed pointed to the back of his head.

"Stitches." He said. She let out a simple 'oh.' She lifted a hand in his direction and he gladly came to her side.

"I'm sorry for everything that happened." She said looking up at him from her hospital bed. He gapped at her. "What?" She asked. He shook his head, kneeling beside the bed and taking her hand in both of his.

"How could you possibly be sorry? You saved my life Addison!" He told her with a smile.

"Yeah, but the way they treat zombies-" She started. But Zed cut her off.

"I don't care about other people Addy." He stood up so he could press his forehead to hers. "All I care about is you." He whispered. She closed her eyes with a smile before tilting her head up to plant a gently kiss to his lips. He cupped her cheek with his and and kissed her back. When they pulled back, Addison pushed the blankets aside and scooted over so there was a little extra space.

Zed smiled softly and climbed into the bed beside her. He flipped the switch for the large overhead light so there was only the backlight still on then let Addison cuddle up beside him and get comfortable before wrapping his arms around her gently.

"You have to tell me if you're hurting ok?" He told her. She nodded and leaned into his again.

"Gar garziga." She whispered sleepily. Zed smiled and kissed her head.

"Gar garziga Addison."