A Blessing In Disguise

I always found the whole gunshot wound theory intriguing. I think it would have been a really unique twist, had this theory been used in the show. I am by no means a medical expert so if the medical stuff isn't 100% accurate I do apologise. I tried my best and I think that in the end it makes sense.

I hope you all enjoy this story and please review.

When a person is bit, often times there is no stopping the inevitable. In this world a bite is a death sentence. Sometimes if a person is lucky, they are bit on the arm or leg and amputation is possible.

Carl Grimes is not lucky. From the moment the walker bit him on the abdomen, he knew that his time was coming to an end.

He doesn't cry or feel sorry for himself. He's lucky to have been able to live this long. He's outlived a lot of people he cared for. Does he wish he could have more time with his father, with his friends, with Judith and with Enid? Of course he does, but instead he will savour what time he has left and make sure his death means something.

He makes the most of the time he has before the fever, nausea and aches kick in. He helps set up a place in the sewers for his new friend Siddiq. Within the next several hours he prepares for death.

He writes letters to all of his loved ones. His father, Michonne, Daryl, Maggie, Carol, Enid and a few others.

He even writes one addressed to Negan. He hopes that the words inside will make a difference and hopefully bring this war to an end.

He takes many pictures with Judith so she will always have memories of her brother.

Finally when the Saviours arrive, Carl does everything in his power to divert Negan's attention. As his home goes up in flames he uses smoke bomb after smoke bomb to provide the others with more time.

It's during this time that he feels the fever kicking in. He feels terrible and he can't seem to walk. He stumbles towards the nearest sewer grate. He is dying but he has utilized the last of his strength for a good reason. He has done what he intended to do.


He is grateful for his Dad and Michonne. He is grateful that they have stayed with him right up until the end.

The fever is strong and Carl feels like he's on fire. His entire body aches and he feels weak. He knows the end is almost here.

As he lays in the burnt out church with his best friend and his father by his side, he says his goodbye and he tells them about the world he envisions. He tells about the growing community, about the peace that surrounds them and how people who were once enemies have now become friends.

Rick and Michonne both protest when he tells them he wishes to end his own life before he can turn. He tells them that it's the way it has to be.

"I love you Carl." Rick sobs as he kisses his sons forehead one final time.

"I love you dad." Despite the pain, Carl manages to smile.

Once his parents are outside he takes several deep breath and slowly withdraws his Berretta from its holster.

It's when he raises it to his head that everything changes.

Carl isn't sure what is it but there is something telling him not to pull the trigger. Something in his head is telling him that this isn't his time. At first he thinks its denial, but then he realizes that the searing pain he felt just minutes ago has lessened. Not by much but it has lessened.

He knows right then and there that something isn't right. If he was dying then he shouldn't have any pain relief. He also realizes that he has been alive for over a day since the bite occurred. He should be dead by now, but somehow he isn't.

He is still weak and his body is sore but he somehow manages to lift his head off the floor. He presses his hand into the charred wooden floors of the church and tries desperately to push his upper body upwards.

He almost makes it before the pain becomes too much and he collapses back onto the floor, letting out a mixed cry of pain and frustration.

His dad who has been seated on the front steps on the church turns his attention towards his dying boy and quickly stumbles to his feet. He races inside the church.

"Carl" he whispers as he kneels down next to the boy.

"Dad" it's barely a whisper. "It's not my time."

Rick brushes the hair from his sons face. "I know son it's not. I'm so sorry Car-." Ricks stops mid-sentence when he notices something odd. Carl's fever, while still present isn't as bad as it was earlier. Normally right before a person dies the fever would be at its highest. But right now his sons forehead is barely burning. It doesn't make sense at all.

"Michonne" he calls and within seconds the women is kneeling down next to him. "Feel his forehead for me."

Michonne is confused by his request, "Rick I".

"Just do it…please?"

Michonne slowly presses the palm of her hand on Carl's forehead.

"Does it feel like the fevers gone down a bit to you?"

"Yeah it does." She turns towards Carl. "Carl how long ago were you bit?"

"Over a day ago" Carl says softly.

Rick and Michonne exchange a look. She speaks first.

"This doesn't make sense, everyone who we've seen get bit has turned within hours, sometimes in minutes. Carl, he should have…he should have turned by now. His fever should be getting higher not going down."

Rick turns towards his son. "Carl how's your pain? What would you say your pain level is?"

"I'd say maybe an eight. The pain…it's not as bad as earlier."

"Rick what do you think is going on?"

Rick looks back and forth between his Son and Michonne. Finally after several seconds he speaks. "I don't know…but I know where we need to go… we need to get to Hilltop. Maybe…maybe we can find answers there. Or at least give the others a chance to say goodbye.

Rick doesn't want to get his hopes up. Maybe this is all just a fluke and Carl will die. Or maybe by some miracle if they even still occur, Carl will survive this.

"I'll cover you. We'll find a car and go to Hilltop." Michonne says as she withdraws her Katana and slices a walker that has stumbled to the entrance.

Rick nods and picks up his son.

Carl is sixteen now and weights more than he did the last time Rick had to carry him. Added to that is the fact that Rick hasn't slept in days and his body is exhausted. Despite how much his muscle burn in pain, he endures it and carries his son.

Michonne slices down several walkers as she races towards a van. "This way!" she calls and Rick runs as fast as he can.

As he is cradled in his father's arms, Carl looks around at the burning town around them. He sees that the gazebo is currently on fire. He and Enid used to spend many nights watching the stars and talking. He finds himself praying that he will have the opportunity to watch the stars with her one more time.

He feels himself being placed in the backseat of the van. Michonne starts the engine and the vehicle speeds of, leaving the burning town that had been their home for nearly two years in the distance.

Rick turns towards his son who is struggling to keep his eyes open. "Just hang on Carl. Just hang on."


Enid never thought this would happen. She always figured that she would die long before Carl ever would. He'd survived so much more crap then she had and she had truly believed that he would survive this horrible stupid war.

She scolds herself for getting close to him and allowing herself to accept the feeling she had for the boy in the sheriff's hat. With Carl anything had seemed possible. When it was just the two of them, she felt free. For a few moments she was able to forget how horribly screwed up the world was.

She saw him not less than a week ago. She never thought that it would be the last time she ever saw him alive.

They stood at the gates of Alexandria. Holding each other in a tight embrace. Her arms around his neck, his arms around her waist.

"Promise me you'll be safe out there." He whispered in her ear.

"I will and promise me you'll keep this place safe, that you'll keep yourself safe."

"I'll do my best and once this war is over, I'm taking you on a date."

She blushed. "Promise?"

"I promise."

They heard the sound of engines in the background. It was time to go.

She leaned upwards on her tiptoes and placed her lips against his. The kiss was short and sweet and ended sooner than both of them would have preferred.

She pulled away and smiled at him before turning and running towards her ride. As she got in she turned her head and saw Carl waving at her, a smile on his face. She smiled back and waved as the car sped off.

When she first learnt of Carl's death she felt like her world had once again been ripped apart. She had cried so hard and screamed so loud, she wouldn't have been surprised if they had heard her at the Sanctuary.

Enid normally wasn't the type of person to show her emotions but she couldn't help it. Carl was her best friend and her boyfriend. She was in love with him. She'd been too afraid to tell him back at Alexandria and now she would never get to tell him.

For several minutes she had just cried and screamed as Maggie embraced her and rocked her back and forth slightly, trying to sooth the girl. After what feels like years, her sobs turning into hiccups and she slowly rises and is guided towards a tree by Maggie.

She currently sits under the tree, her knees drawn up to her chest and sniffling. Occasionally a tear trickles down her face. She doesn't bother to wipe them away, she doesn't care right now.

Maggie watches the girl as she stands near the gate, keeping a close eye on the prisoners who are currently out of their cells.

Her heart breaks for Enid, she has formed a mother/daughter bond with the teen and like any mother, seeing your child in pain is one of the worst things in this world. She knows how much Carl had meant to Enid and she along with Rick and Michonne had saw the two teenager's friendship blossom into a relationship.

She couldn't imagine what Rick was going through. She like him had lost people she loved. She had lost Glenn and the pain she still felt over his death was almost crippling at times. However she couldn't imagine the pain a parent experienced losing a child. She prayed she would never have too.

Rick and Michonne, they had always pushed the group to continue on. They kept everyone together. The loss they had suffered would no doubt take a toll on their moral and spirit. While Maggie knew it wasn't likely, there was a possibility that both Rick and Michonne would be to broken to fight. That possibility was scary, if they had any chance of beating Negan and the Saviours, they would need everyone at full strength.

She turns her head and sees Siddiq treating a couple injured Alexandrians. In some ways Carl, even in death had given them an advantage. They had a doctor and a friend. Siddiq was very kind and in the hour she had known him, she was certain that his presence would be a blessing to the community. Carl was gone and they would all mourn him. She would miss him greatly. However maybe his death was a blessing in disguise. They had a doctor, a doctor who could make sure that her baby would be okay. She had Carl to thank for that.

Her attention is drawn towards the gate where Kal is calling out to her. "Rick's here… he's here."

Daryl, Carol and Rosita all stand up and walk closer to the gates. Maggie comes to stand between Rosita and Carol. She tries to prepare herself for what she will see when the gates open. However nothing could prepare any of them for the sight that fell upon them when the gates opened.

When the gates opened it takes everyone a second to register the sight before them. Carol is the first one to speak. "Oh My God." Maggie whispers beside her "How?"

Rick and Michonne stand before them, looking dirty and exhausted. They are supporting Carl between them, his arms draped over their shoulders. What shocks everyone is that Carl is still alive and breathing.

Before anyone can speak, Rick cries out for Siddiq. The doctor is there within seconds.

"Is he still alive?" The newest addition to the group asks as he stares at his friend who he thought he would never see again.

"Yeah, he is and…his fever its breaking. I don't know how but it is"

Siddiq finds what Rick says hard to believe, but is isn't the time to question it. Instead he guides Rick and the others towards the medical trailer. If what Rick is saying is indeed true, than they may have a small chance to save Carl's life and they don't have time to spare.

Once inside he helps Rick ease Carl onto the medical bed. Carl is still pale and sweaty but his breathy has improved since Siddiq last saw him. The boy is awake and alert and Siddiq quickly tells everyone that it's a good sign.

The next part will not be easy. He needs to take a closer look at Carl's wound.

"Carl can I take a look at you wound?"

When the boy nods, Siddiq lifts up his shirt, revealing the bite mark.

A muffled sob escaped Enid's mouth from where she stands at the foot of the bed.

The wound is red and inflamed. The tissue is dead within the wound. It is no longer bleeding heavily. The skin on the rest of his abdomen, however isn't pale and ghostly anymore, but was regaining its normal pinkish hue. Normally if the infection had spread through the body, his skin would be a ghostly white. It had been over a day since Carl was bit. Normally the infection would spread through the body within hours.

Siddiq has never seen anything like it.

"It's like…it's like the infection hasn't spread through his body."

"How is that possible?" Maggie asks.

"I'm not sure, I'm going to try and debried the wound. If I can remove the tissue from where the bite is, then maybe I can figure out what is happening." He turns to face the group. "I need you all to wait outside."

Rick and Enid protest immediately, both adamant about staying with Carl.

"I realize you don't want to leave him, but what I am about to do is very delicate and will also cause Carl a lot of pain. I don't think any of you should have to witness it."

Carl who had been silent for the past few minutes, speaks. "Dad… all of you it's okay, I don't want you guys to see me like this...let Siddiq do what he has to."

Reluctantly they all slowly make their way towards the door. Just as Daryl opens it, they all turn and look at Carl one last time.

The boy smiles at them. His smile gives them all hope that maybe by some miracle he can survive.


Over the next few hours Rick, Michonne, Enid and everyone else sit on the grass, anxiously waiting for Siddiq's return.

Slowly many of the Alexandrians start to join them until eventually they are all seating on the grass, looking like a flock of sheep in a pasture.

After minutes of silent Daryl speaks up. "Did I ever tell you guys about the time I took Carl huntin with me and he nearly took my dam head off with my crossbow?"

As Daryl recounts his tale, Rick finds himself smiling for the first time in what feels like ages. For a few minutes their minds are focused on Carl's undetermined fate, but instead are focused on a humorous and heartwarming tall about the Boy who touched all their lives.

Daryl isn't the only one with a story to tell.

After he finishes, Carol tells a story about the time Carl attempted to cook dinner and nearly set the kitchen on fire. Maggie tells them about the broken music box he gave her no long after they lost Beth. She really needs to fix that thing.

Enid tells them about the time Carl freaked out because he thought Judith had gone missing. It turned out Judith had learned to walk and was off exploring within the rest of the house. She also tells them about the time she and Carl snuck over the wall to go fishing. All Carl ended up with was a sore butt after he accidently sat on a fishing hook.

Soon other members of the community begin to share stories about Carl and Rick learns just how many lives his son had impacted.

Scott tells every one about the time Carl joined in on a poker game and ended up winning, despite having no clue what he was doing. Barbara shares a story about the time Carl organized a scavenger hunt for the children.

Bruce recalls how one morning he showed up at the wall to find Carl hard at work, working on the wall expansion. Apparently the kid had been up for hours hard at work.

Tobin is the last to tell a story. He recalls how strong of a leader Carl was. He tells about how well Carl did the other night. How calm he was and that his calmness in the face of disaster gave the rest of them a sense of reassurance. He tells Rick that his son was the last to retreat that night and that Carl is the bravest person he knows.

For those closest to Carl, the stories bring smiles to their faces and occasionally a slight laugh escapes someone's lips.

As he holds Judith on his lap and his hand tightly intertwined with Michonne's, he takes a deep breath. Carl's fate is up in the air and he doesn't know if his son is going to live, or if he is simply holding on to give them all one last chance to say goodbye. Either way these stories that everyone is sharing bring him a sense of peace. No matter what happens, he is sure that his son had lived a good life and became the person Rick wanted him to be. Carl had grown up into a good person who is kind and brave and loyal. No matter what happens, his son has made him so proud.

Just as Michonne finishes a story about the time she and Carl faced a group of walkers to retrieve a picture and a pink cat, the door opens and Siddiq steps out. The look on his face is unreadable and it is several moments before someone speaks.

Michonne finally has the courage to ask the question on everyone's mind.

"Well how is he?"

Siddiq looks around at the anxious group of people, awaiting his answer. Slowly he begins to speak.

"I can confirm that Carl was indeed bitten by a walker and was infected." A slight sobs escapes Enid mouth and Michonne closes her eyes, bracing for the worst. "However I strongly believe that Carl is going to survive."

Stunned looks appear on everyone's face. They are scared and confused.

"But how…if he was bitten how is it possible that he can survive?" Rosita asks the young doctor. "A bite is lethal, isn't it?"

Siddiq nods. "Normally yes but in Carl's case it isn't."

"How?" Rick asks. He voice his quiet and he struggles to comprehend what he is hearing.

"From what I can gather, the pathogen acts like a blood infection. When a person is bit the saliva and other bacteria is transferred from the walker's mouth into the victim. The blood at the site of the bite becomes infected and the infections quickly spreads through the blood stream. As it reaches the vital organs like the kidneys and liver, the infection begins to attack said organs. The symptoms of the bite such as the nausea, fatigue, edema and most importantly the high fever are all signs of sepsis. Sepsis is an immune response that occurs when a severe infection is present. Essentially the pathogen is so strong that the body responses to try and fight it off ends up causing damage to vital tissues and organs. Eventually the body shuts down and more often than not, sepsis is irreversible and the person dies fairly quickly."

Everyone takes a second to digest the information. Enid, who eyes are still red and puffy speaks up. "So how come…how can he be still alive?"

"I'm not entirely sure. I do however have a theory." Siddiq turns to look directly at Rick. "Rick may I ask you a question?"

Rick nods in response.

"The area where Carl was bitten, around his rib cage. Has he ever been injured there before? The injury would have had to be traumatic."

Rick pauses for a split second before something clicks in his mind. "When Carl was twelve he was accidently shot in that area. I didn't …think of it until now. It was pretty bad."

Siddiq nods as he absorbs the information Rick has shared with him. "That would explain the amount of scare tissue around the site of his wound."

"I'm sorry but what does that have to do with Carl's bite?" Michonne asks.

"It looks as though when Carl was shot several layers of scar tissue, both internally and externally formed around the site. The blood flow rate around any scar tissue if slower than it would be around undamaged tissue. Also blood clots can often form in the vessels within the tissue."

Seeing the looks of confusion on people's faces he continued. "Carl was bitten exactly on the scar tissue. My theory is that when the infected blood entered his body, the slower rate of blood flow prevented the infection from spreading as fast as it normally would. When Carl's immune system detected the infection, it began to combat it. When I examined Carl's wound I found that several blood clots had formed. It appears that those blood clots prevented a majority of the infection from spreading through the blood stream and instead kept it contained around the site of the bite. Eventually Carl's immune system managed to fight off what little infection remained travelling in the blood stream. Once his body realized that the infection had stopped spreading, his fever broke and his immune system calmed down."

"So what are you sayin?" Daryl asks.

"I'm saying that being shot years ago may have saved Carl's life. Carl getting shot is a blessing in disguise."

Everyone sits in silence for a moment before Enid and Michonne both let out a sob of relief. Maggie closes her eyes and mouths the words "Thank You." Rick passes Judith to Rosita. Shaking with sobs, he embraces Siddiq in a hug. "Thank you" he sobs.

"It was the least I could do for him." Siddiq says.

"So he's going to be okay?" Enid asks the doctor.

"He's not completely out of the woods yet. To fully treat the sepsis he needs antibiotics that we don't have here…I know of a place that may have them

"Just tell us where and we'll go." Michonne says, her voice still husky from crying.

"Three weeks ago I stumbled across a pharmacy that was fully stocked. It is a couple hours south of here but I believe that there is a good chance we will find what we need there."

Rick nods and turn to Michonne. "I'll go, will you stay with him?"

Before she can answer, Daryl places a hand on Rick's shoulder.

"Hey, your boy needs you here. I'll go, I'll take a team and we'll go and be back by nightfall."

"I can't ask you to do that, you've all been awake for over a day. You need rest…all of you."

Rosita comes to stand beside Daryl. "A few more hours without sleep won't kill us. If losing a few hours of sleep means he'll make it then it's worth it."

Rick smiles at the young woman. He is amazed when nearly everyone volunteers to join Daryl and Rosita and the trip. He is touched by how many people care about his son.

Daryl and Rosita set out with Tobin, Tara and Scott. "We'll be back as soon as we can!" Daryl promises his best friend. "Tell Carl to hang in there."

"I will and Daryl." The archer gives Rick his attention. "Thank you." Daryl nods in understanding and then leaves for the gate.

"Can we see him?" Michonne asks Siddiq.

"He is currently resting, his body is exhausted, but you can go in and sit with him if you wish."

Michonne places a hand on the doctor's shoulder and thanks him. She then looks at Enid.

"Do you want to come?" she asks the young girl. Enid is still lightly crying and she can only nod as she rises up from the ground and enters the trailer with Rick and Michonne. All of them amazed at the apparent miracle that they are witnessing.


Carl looks peaceful. Rick hasn't seen him look this peaceful in a long time. His eye has been freshly bandaged and a cold cloth rests of his forehead. The wound on his ribcage had been bandaged up. His skin has regained some colour and his chest rises and falls at a steady rate.

Enid scurries over and takes a seat next to the bed. A few tears trickle down her cheeks and fall onto the soft blankets covering his body. She smiles adoringly at him and holds his rough hand between her soft hands.

Michonne watches the sight and a smile forms on her lips. She is glad Enid and Carl have each other. It's obvious she cares a lot about Carl, and she knows Carl deeply cares for the young girl. She comes to stand at the foot of Carl's bed.

"How long have you two been-" she pauses unsure of how to phrase it.

A couple weeks." Enid's voice is soft. "We've only been like this for a couple weeks. I liked him for a while now...I was just afraid to tell him. I was scared about what I felt for him and I think he was too. I think he was afraid of how he felt and didn't know how to admit it."

Michonne smiles at the girl and glances at Rick, who is sitting on Carl's other side. His head is leaning against the wall and his eyes are focused on his son.

"Yeah, Grimes men tend to have trouble accepting and admitting their feelings." She says and she hears Rick give a tiny breathy laugh. He turns and smiles at her. The look they exchange says it all. Carl is going to be okay. He is going to make it. She lets out a deep breath and takes a seat at the foot on the bed.


They sit in silence for almost two hours being a noise breaks the silence. Enid's stomach grumbles loudly and she blushes and apologizes profusely.

"I'm sorry I haven't eaten since I got back from Oceanside. I guess I didn't realize how hungry I was."

"It okay Enid, if you want to go and get something to eat you can."

Enid looks at Carl hesitantly. "No it's okay…I don't want to leave him…not until he wakes up."

Michonne smiles at the girl. "He'll be okay until you get back, he'd want you to take care of yourself."

Enid nods and slowly stands up. "Do you guys want anything?" she asks. "We don't have a lot but I can grab us some rations or something"

"That would be great." Michonne says with a genuine smile. Rick meanwhile only nods and mutters a word of thanks.

Enid leaves the trailer, promising to be back soon. Michonne turns towards Rick. He has been silent for the most part. She has learned how to read him. She can tell by the blank expression on his face that he is in shock. She can't blame him though, the past forty or so hours have been a living hell and she too is struggling to comprehend what had happened.

"Hey." She places a hand on his shoulder. "You okay." Rick turns to face him and she notices that his eyes are red.

"I uh don't know…I just cant." His voice is shaky and tears form in his eyes. "He got bit and I…wasn't there…I wasn't there to protect him." He sobs and holds his face in his hands.

"Rick…he's a teenager, he's independent and he is going to go off on his own."

"But what happens if next time we aren't lucky…what happens if Siddiq is wrong…I can't …I can't lose him." Rick is full on sobbing now and he leans into Michonne's shoulder and sobs.

"He is strong Rick and I believe that he made it through this for a reason. He will beat this Rick and he will continue to become a strong leader like his father." She is crying too now and they hold each other and cry. All the mixture of intense emotions have finally taken your toll and for several minutes they just cry.

Finally after several minutes, their sobs die down and Rick looks up at his son. "He's right you know, this war has to stop. We can't keep going down this path…I was so distracted by this war that I wasn't there and he almost died".

Michonne nods. "The world he told us about…we can get there. We don't have to stop fighting but we have to know when to stop and try something else."

"We're going to make the future he dreamed about a reality."

Together they look at Carl and smile. He will survive, and this war will end. Carl will get the chance to live in the world that he had envisioned.


Carol and Morgan are waiting by the gate when Daryl and his group return.

They are covered in blood and they all look like they're about to collapse from exhaustion.

"What happened?" Carol asks the group.

"Dam place was overrun, we had to fight our way through but we got it…we got it." Daryl says and Carol can tell that her best friend is exhausted.

Rosita walks up beside him carrying a small pack containing the medicine. "How's Carl?"

Carol smiles, "He's still holding on. Is that the medicine?"

Rosita nods. Carol takes it from the women. "I'll take it to him, you all need to rest." Before any of them can say anything, Carol is running off towards the trailer.


It has been two days since Carl was bit and he is still alive. Siddiq has administered the first round of the antibiotics. They appear to be working. His fever is completely gone and his wound is starting to heal. Now they simply wait for him to wake up.


Carl slowly stirs and opens his eyes. When he first wakes up he is unsure of his surroundings. It takes him a second to realize he isn't dead but still alive and breathing. He doesn't know how but he is. Slowly he looks around at his surroundings.

On the left side of his bed, a person's head is resting on the bed, brown hair sprawled out over the blankets. He can tell almost immediately that it is Enid. He notices that she is holding onto his hand even while asleep. He smiles and thanks god that he gets the chance to see her again.

Michonne is sleeping at the foot of his bed. One arm propped up at the elbow and her head rests in her hand.

Rick is seated in a church next to the bed. His head is leaned back against the wall and he is snoring lightly.

"Dad?" Carl whispered as quietly as possible so as to not wake everyone up.

His father's eyes open and he looks at his son who is now awake.

"Carl…how are you feeling" he asked in a quiet voice.

"I feel tired but I feel fine." He says. "Dad how?"

Rick interrupts him. "Im going to get Siddiq. He can explain it better than I can."

He squeezes Carls shoulder and then stands up. As he walks by her, he shakes Michonne awake.

She is confused at first but once she realizes that Carl is awake she immediately perks up. She smiles at him. "You're looking much better." She says.

"You look like death." he teases and they both laugh. "Gee thanks."

He stares at her for a minute before speaking. "I'm alive Michonne… I'm alive."

"I know." She says and reaches out to squeeze his hand.

Their attention is drawn towards Enid when she lets out a small sigh.

"How long has she been here?" He rubs his thumb along the top of her hand.

"She's been here the whole time. She left once to get us something to eat and was back within two minutes." She watches the loving smile on his face as he stares at Enid's sleeping form. "She loves you."

His smile grows. "Yeah I know. I love her too." He says and lets out a sigh of content.

Enid's voice breaks the silence. "You're very loud you know that." She says as her head rises from the bed and she smiles at Carl, her eyes watery.

He chuckles, "I've been told." He reaches up and brushes the hair out of her face. She leans in a places a kiss on his cheek.

"Really I nearly die and you only kiss my cheek?" he teases. Michonne snorts and Enid lets out a watery laugh before she leans in again and this time connects her lips with his.

It feels so good to kiss him again.

Just as she pulls away the door opens and Rick and Siddiq walk in. The young doctor immediately smiles at him.

"Carl my friend, how are you feeling?"

"I feel good…I feel normal. How is this possible?"

Siddiq smiles before explaining everything to Carl. It takes several minutes for Carl to receive all the information. Once he was heard everything, he sits in silence and lets everything sink in before speaking.

"So what you're saying is that me getting shot years ago was really a blessing in disguise?"

"Simply put yes."

Carl lets out a sign of relief and smiles at his father. "Dad what I said about the future I meant it. I know it can be real." He says somewhat sleepily.

Rick holds his sons hand and smiles at him. "And it will be real Carl. I promise you everyone is going to work together to end this war quickly. I promise you I am going to make the future you saw reality."

Carl smiles and looks towards Enid. "I wrote you a letter to say goodbye but I guess there's no need for it."

She gives him a watery smile and whispers in a soft voice, "Don't tell me goodbye."

A tiny laugh escapes his lips. "I still owe you a date don't I." she nods. "Good because the second I'm good again I'm taking you on one." Her smile widens and she sniffles before she brings his hand up to her lips and kisses it.

"Has anyone seen Judith? I need to see her about a certain sheriff's hat that I may have given up prematurely."

Rick starts chuckling as soon as his son says this. He knows right then and there that his son is going to be okay.

Most people would never be thankful about a gunshot wound. For a long time Carl wasn't. But as he lays in bed with his father, Michonne and Enid surrounding him, he for the first time in his life is grateful that he was shot almost four years ago. He is grateful because thanks to that gunshot, he is alive and he has been granted a second chance at life. He vows to use it wisely and to make his dreams of the future come true.