He would never forgive himself if Brian was dead....if any of them were dead.
"You can't go back there, it's too dangerous." Russell protested, but Nick kept limping. He didn't seem that hurt but it was obvious he was in pain.
"I have to know. We should all probably stick together anyway. Safety in numbers, right?" Nick said.
Russell answered by shooting into the air, startling Nick and making him jump. Nick felt his knee scream at him but he stood there, staring in shock.
"I am in charge and I say we are going this way, understand?" he growled. Nick trembled but now he was sure he didn't want to follow. Why he did in the first place was a stupid decision. Nick could only think of one thing....and that was to run.
"Get back here!!" Russell shouted. He wanted to kick himself for this whole thing, it wasn't how it was supposed to turn out at all.
Nick hurt like hell but he ran as fast as he could, adrenaline taking over. Russell was cursing and fired at him, missing him but not by much. Nick just prayed he could lose him.
Russ cursed under his breath when Nick broke away. He almost had him but even injured that kid could run. Being injured himself kind of put him in a predicament, wondering if he should bother chasing after him at all, or try to get help for himself. The kid wouldn't survive in these woods anyway, there were tons of dangerous animals...not to mention he didn't have food. Russ almost walked away, but turned instead he turned towards where Nick ran to, thinking of Chloe. She would have wanted him to finish what he started.
It had to be done for her.
Nick felt the pain in his legs intensify but he moved quickly. Once he felt like he lost Russell, he stopped, leaning on a tree to rest as sweat dripped down his face. He was soaked from the rain and cold, completely alone in the dark. If fate smiled on him, Russ wouldn't find during the night. The question was, where would he go? There didn't seem to be any sort of civilization where he was. The bus, burning not far away was destroyed and his bandmates...they were gone.
Nick would give anything to see them now. Even AJ.
As he limped, his stomach turned over...feeling like it would leap from his throat.
He thought back to the guys again. Everything had been falling apart lately, but he wanted to hear Brian tell him a joke....or Kevin yell at him....anything just to hear their voices. Nick finally leaned over and lost the contents of his stomach, which wasn't much, he'd gone to bed before the accident without finishing dinner.
It was then he smelled blood.
"Help me lift Howie, Brian. Onto my back." AJ said once they had felt it was okay to move. Looking over at Kevin sitting on the ground, he was grateful they had made it out in time before the gasoline caught fire.
"You sure you can lift him?" Brian asked, holding his wrist. His thoughts were not on his cousin but on Nick. Was he all right?
"Yeah, I think so. We need to find somewhere to rest for the night."
"AJ is right. It's no use sitting here in the rain talking." Kevin agreed. Even though he had been lodged under the steering wheel, he didn't feel that far off...but the throbbing in his head and ringing in his ear were not something he enjoyed.
"Good idea, but where exactly do we go? It isn't like there is a Four Seasons or something out here." Brian snapped. He was getting chilly and would give anything for a coffee, then he cursed at himself for being so thoughtless. Nick may be dead, and if he wasn't....that guy was still out there.
They found a cave not too far from the crash site, at least they would be dry. AJ tried to wake up Howie by shaking him gently but he was out cold.
"Howie is lucky he doesn't know what is going on. Lucky bastard." he said finally, sitting down. He searched in his pocket for his cigarettes but was disappointed when he only found a lighter.
"We are all lucky to be alive." Kevin pointed out with a smile.
"I heard a gun go off, you sure you're all right?" AJ asked, noticing the dried blood on Kevin's torn jeans. Kevin looked down and nodded, although his leg hurt. He figured it was from being stuck, he'd know if he'd been shot.
"I hope Nick is okay. You think he got thrown from the bus too?" Brian replied, interrupting their conversation. He shivered and moved to sit closer to the others for warmth.
Not knowing would be the hardest part....not knowing if their little brother was all right or if he would be okay on his own. Nick was the kind of person who relied heavily on others, he rarely made any decisions on his own. When he did they turned out badly.
"If Nick is as stubborn as he usually is, I am sure he is just fine." AJ said, putting the lighter back into his pocket. Kevin watched him, feeling so proud that AJ had rescued him and Howie almost on his own....he was really grateful.
"I am proud of you AJ."
"That was nothing, man. You may piss me the fuck off but I love you. I wouldn't leave you for dead."
Kevin patted AJ on the knee and smiled. The rain fell steadily outside the cave and the three of them thought once again of Nick....hoping soon they would find him and the wait would be over.
Little did they know they were not alone....