Christmas on the island
It had been a tedious journey on the boat ever since they escaped the city. With provisions low, and space scarce, at least, for the amount of people the little boat had to carry, the Mallrats had seen no other option then to leave part of their Tribe on a small deserted island they had come across while searching for food and water. It was a tough choice, most of them did not like the idea of being separated from their friends, but for now, they would be safe here, and they knew the others had a reason to return. For nothing would stop Amber from returning to her little boy, whom she had left in Trudy’s care.
Now here they were, some Mallrats, some friends they had met just before leaving. Luckily Trudy’s time with the Gaians now came in useful, as she turned out to have some general idea about surviving in the wild. Together with Trudy, Slade, Ruby and Sammy, Darryl had managed to at least build them some form of shelter from the elements, and high enough of the ground that little creatures didn’t accidentally slither into their beds at night.
And creatures… there were plenty. Most of them easy to find, all they had to do was follow Gel’s high-pitched screams whenever she unexpectedly encountered one.
Several weeks had gone by, without sign of their friends return. And Darryl was fine with it. Sure, it lacked the opportunities the city had to offer, his chances of getting his big breakthrough as an entertainer on this island were kind of non-existent, but it felt good to be safe for once. As for adoring fans, atleast he had one, and someday in the far away future, Brady would be a teenage girl that could idolize him. Daydreaming of fame, Darryl stood at the bottom of a tree, meant to watch were Sammy threw the coconuts, gathering them as he dropped them on the beach. “Darryl, look out!” Lottie shouted from a little distance as a coconut came crashing down towards him. Just in time he jumped out of the way. “Thanks Lot’s! Wouldn’t wanna get a coconut on my coconut!” Joyfully he gathered the coconuts in some sort of basket that the girls had made from banana leaves, while Sammy came down the tree.
“Daddyl Daddyl!” Brady shouted happily as they got back to with the haul of coconuts and threw her arms around his legs, making it impossible for him to not tumble and fall over in the sand. “Hey you silly little monster” Darryl said as he lifted the giggling girl up in the air above him. At first they just assumed Brady had issues pronouncing the R in his name, and had all tried to correct her, but it turned out the little girl also kind of thought he was her dad, as she had seen posters of him as “Zoot” in the city, and since Zoot was her father, and Darryl looked like him on those posters, surely Darryl was the daddy she never truly met. No matter how often they told her this wasn’t the case, she did not except no for an answer, so Daddy it was. She was stubborn… like her mother…
Trudy looked happily at the scene before her. For so long she had chased after guys that weren’t truly available to her, but here, on this island, she had finally seen a glimpse of a future that might truly be possible. Darryl had this… carefree… air about him, the way he was with Brady. His presence lightened her heart every time he was near, yet she was scared, scared to let anyone in, scared to get hurt again. And on this island, there would be nowhere to run if things went wrong, which in her experience, it always did. She put the stripy blanket over Bray jr, who was sleeping quietly in the little crib they’d made for him, though in all honestly it looked more like a manger. The thought of it put a smile on her face, it was nearly Christmas after all. Not that it was something they celebrated anymore, they hadn’t since the virus hit. She had never given it a second thought before, but here, in the peace of this beautiful island, the longing for it came back.
After a good night’s sleep, Darryl woke up with a plan. It was a day for celebration, and surprise, he decided. Ever since Trudy had mentioned that the longest day of the year was just behind them, he realized it was soon to be Christmas. Surely that would be a reason to celebrate, or at least, have some fun. With a little help from Gel and Lottie, he had found a way to make some decorations, although the younger one wasn’t really sure why someone would decorate a tree, she had been so small when the virus hit, she barely remembered Christmas. He looked at the baobab tree in front of him, decorated with garlands of red and white flowers, and slices of starfruit. It was perfect.
With a giant grin on his face he went to Trudy’s home, while Gel and Lottie were happily getting Sammy, Slade and Ruby to show them their surprise. “Come on Trudy, just come with me… I promise you’ll like it!” Darryl said as Trudy refused to come with him at first. It was early in the evening after all, and the kids really needed to go to sleep. “I really can’t, maybe tomorrow ok? I’m sure whatever it is, it can wait… the children need to sleep” Darryl sighed, disappointed that the person he was truly doing this for, was about to make all his hard work for nothing. Maybe if he dropped her a hint. “Yule be sorry!” he said while looking at her with adorable puppy eyes and a little smirk. “Get it? YULE. Because it’s Christmas.” Trudy’s eyes lit up, Christmas… so she wasn’t the only one who had thought about it recently… it was enough to spike her curiosity and willingness to go outside “Wait, what did you do?” She asked while balancing Bray jr on her hip. “You’ll see,” Darryl said as he held out his hand to Brady and led Trudy and the children towards the tree.
“Tada!!! A Christmas Tree!!!” he said with a huge arm gesture towards the tree as he led them to the tree. “Oh Darryl!” Trudy swooned as she saw all the work he had done on the big tree before her. “I love Christmas. It’s the most wonderful time of the year,” She looked Darryl in the eye, her heart filled with joy, happiness and love. “Thank you,” she said softly before she leaned in and kissed him.