It had been 2 months since Daryl, Rick and the others had taken Terminus. 8 full weeks. Daryl had counted every day that went by. And he had searched for her every – single - day. Of course he was keeping his eyes open for Beth too, but he would be lying if he asked himself to believe he would have lasted this long if it was only Beth he was looking for. No, the reason he continued every day was because Carol was out there somewhere.
Daryl always hoped he would return one day and she would be there, waiting for him to come back. But for 8 weeks, 56 days, he had returned to Terminus and she was never there. She was never anywhere to be found. Once a week he took a car and went further away. He'd been 50 miles in every direction of the prison, which was in itself at least 15 miles from Terminus.
Daryl knew Rick was getting annoyed at how much gas he was using in his search, but he never said anything because Rick knew he owed it to him. They had a huge argument one evening. It was basically a continuation of the disagreement they had at the prison when Rick told him he'd banished Carol. The conversation hadn't been over then, but with the attack, being separated and having to fight for their lives at Terminus, there was never a chance to finish it. But once things calmed down, it came to head again. Since that night Rick had been supportive of Daryl's search, well maybe not supportive, but he would never provide any opposition.
About a month into his search Daryl took a huge risk and went back to the prison for his bike. He left the car he'd drove out on the main road and went in by foot. It was dangerous and stupid but after everything and everyone he'd lost it was a small victory to get it back. He'd also figured though Rick would be pissed he'd risked his life he might at least be thankful he'd be using a little less gas.
Abe and Rosita picked up the car a couple days later. Daryl showed them the prison, the place they had called home. He told them a lot about Carol and a bit about Judith, Beth and Tyreese. Before climbing in the car to drive back to Terminus while Daryl continued searching Abe said, "I can't wait to meet her when you bring her back." Unfortunately Abe was still waiting and Daryl was still searching.
Time was running short though. Abraham had convinced the entire group to help him get Eugene to Washington. Two weeks. 14 days and they were leaving Georgia. Daryl was torn. But he knew he couldn't leave the only family he knew for a chance. Or a ghost. He was going to D.C. with them. Which made it even more important that he kept searching from sun up to sun down. Every day. If she was anywhere close he was going to find her.
He had woke at first light and headed out on the bike that morning. Daryl would have only slept a few hours every night and spent more time searching, but he needed the light. There was no point in searching in the dark. He realized very early on that you only need the light when it's burning low.