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"Of course I'm alive. I'm not an idiot. ...Those goddamn assholes couldn't wait two days for me to catch up."
Nick

A Left 4 Dead 2 fanfiction by Disrupted Original that takes place after the ending of the game. Apparently the survivors were slated to be brought to a fleet of cruise ships. The author takes this idea and runs with it, having the cruise ship crash and/or sink into the ocean. The game's party of four becomes separated from each other. This story follows Nick as he tries to reunite with them.

The fic is not so much a story about a Zombie Apocalypse as it is a story about Nick's slow change from complete asshole to a somewhat decent human being.

This fanfic is still in-progress, at 30+ chapters.

It can be read here.


Tropes used in Two Step include:
  • Arc Words: 'Say hey, Daisy Mae. How many children have died today?'
  • Badass and Child Duo: While Terry and Sean are more teenagers than kids, Isaac definitely counts when they're with Nick.
  • Beard of Sorrow: Well, several months of not shaving does that to a person.
  • Big Friendly Dog: Rob, unless you're a zombie.
  • Break the Haughty: Seems to be the road Nick's going down right now. Nick was a handsome, narcissistic, smug jerk ass who only looked after himself before the infection. Suddenly he is scarred, half blind, alone and desperately trying to reconnect with his companions.
  • Breather Episode: The chapters spent in Eight Springs.
  • Character Development: Nick gets loads of this.
  • Crapsack World: Well, it is a zombie apocalypse. Except now it's winter, and the further north Nick travels, the worse it seems to get.
  • Crazy Enough to Work: Nick's plan for getting out of Washington, D.C. Infiltrate a military encampment, disable six of their seven Hummers, hotwire and steal the last one, and then pick up and escape with three kids and a dog? Sure, why not?
  • Death Glare: Losing an eye seems to have made Nick an expert at this.
  • Decoy Protagonist: Christopher and Amanda are introduced before even Nick is. But Christopher doesn't last too long before getting infected. And after Amanda tries to kill Nick, he leaves her for dead, as he probably infected her on accident already.
  • Determinator: Nick, who was willing to risk getting a brain hemorrhage after a nasty fight with a charger rather than sit and wait for his wounds to heal. To a lesser extent, Rob.
  • Don't You Dare Pity Me!: Nick might be half-blind and starving to death, but he doesn't take well to sympathy. Giving it, on the other hand...
  • Downer Beginning: The story begins with Christoper and Amanda walking down a road piled with dead bodies. They were stuck on their yacht for a month and had no idea how far the Infection had spread, or the damage it had done.
  • Eye Scream: Only exacerbated by the fact that Nick got the wound by saving Coach's life.
  • Five-Man Band
  • Handicapped Badass: Even with just one eye, he can still kick a lot of ass.
  • He's Just Hiding: In-universe example. The note Nick found at Eight Springs makes it clear that Ellis is clinging to the hope that Nick isn't dead.
  • Hidden Depths: Nick, while never quite dropping his grumpy stoicism, still became attached to his dog and two of the three kids from Washington- a huge change from his attitude in the game.
  • Hot Mom: Elaine may be have gray hairs and is older than nick, but he admits she still has a strong and youthful look about her.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: It's never blatantly revealed, but rather hinted that a pair of survivors Nick runs into would have liked to have him over for dinner.
  • Improvised Weapon: Nick kills a Charger with a cake knife. The absurdity of this is not lost on him.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: Isaac's only form of humor is making painfully terrible zombie puns. Guess how the others react.
  • Ineffectual Loner: Nick, but the same would be true for any survivor in the same situation. He's just harder to get along with.
  • I Will Find You: It is yet to be seen whether or not Nick does reunite with Coach and the others.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Nick, of course. Sean also has shades of this.
  • Just a Kid: Spoken by Nick after Sean saves him from dying of a bullet wound.
  • Left for Dead: Nick does this to Amanda early on after she tries to kill him.
  • Licked by the Dog: Nick is adopted by/adopts a stray dog named Rob and three boys from Washington, D.C.
  • The Load: Played straight with Christopher and Amanda. Totally averted with Rob and the boys.
  • Madness Mantra: "Say hey, Daisy Mae..."
  • Mercy Kill: Nick to Christopher, when he inadvertently passes the zombie virus to him.
    • This was also Gregory's intention when he murdered a train full of children. He was also crazy.
  • Morality Pet: Terry, Sean, Isaac, and Rob are this for Nick. Especially Isaac.
  • Nothing Is the Same Anymore: Except for the zombies. Nick is struggling to overcome a handicap and not starve to death, while actually seeking out other people, as opposed to his 'lone-wolf' attitude at the start of the game. Also after Terry's death.
  • Papa Wolf: Nick grows to be this for the boys.
  • Perpetual Smiler: Terrence.
  • Perpetual Frowner: Nick.
  • Scars Are Forever: Nick can certainly tell you that.
  • Scar Survey: With a face like Nick's this trope was bound to happen eventually.
  • Super Drowning Skills: Tanks are too dense and disproportionate to swim.
  • Teen Genius: Sean, who is an experienced medic at age fifteen.
  • Throw the Dog a Bone: In chapter 28, after all the shit Nick's been through the past twenty eight chapters, the gods above must have smiled on him, when he finally, finally gets laid by a fiery red head.
  • Troubling Unchildlike Behaviour: Isaac, the twelve-year-old sniper.
  • Up to Eleven: The Special Infected have continued to mutate, making them stronger and smarter. The Smoker can now grab two people at once, the Hunter is much faster, the Jockey has barbs in his feet to anchor itself to people... One might wonder what a Tank would be like.
  • Wham! Episode: Chapter 23. May induce shock and profuse crying.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Nick apparently has a fear of water from nearly drowning on a cruise ship and a 'really-he'll-piss-his-pants' fear of Witches. For good reason.
  • Word of God: The author has stated that in canon, Amanda becomes a witch after she is abandoned.
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