Chapter 11

The rain finally let up in time for Carol to start to head to the house to help with supper. She stood up in the middle of his tent. "Think they'd mind if I went into the house like this?" she teased, toeing his naked hip. "Or this?" She tied the shirt at her waist. It was still big on her, but it was better than her soaking wet shirt. It was bad enough that she was going to have to wear soaking wet blue jeans. She reached for her panties then, pulling them on.

She caught him watching her. It unnerved her a little that he said so much without opening his mouth. She swallowed hard, licking her lips. "You going to come up to the house with me?"

He shook his head as he pushed himself up to prop on his elbow. "Thought I'd go see 'bout the watch schedule tonight. I ain't got no place in that kitchen with a bunch a hens cluckin' 'round..." He gave her a wink. "Pretty sure they'll be nosing 'round 'bout our little trip into the woods. I ain't gotta be no part of that."

"It's none of their business what we do." She fell onto her knees beside him. Her hand moved to his shoulder as she searched his eyes. Her hand slipped from his shoulder up his neck and then caressed his cheek. Leaning forward, she caught his lips in a tender yet seductive kiss. "Can I come back later?"

"You even gotta ask that, lady?" His head fell forward, resting on hers. He opened his eyes, searching hers. When she shook her head, he gave her a half smile. "Then my door's always open." He cupped her neck with his free hand, kissing her again. Her lips were intoxicating and soft. He pulled back and gave her another half smile. "Best get on up to the house, Carol. 'fore they send out a search party looking for ya."

Carol let the bustle in the kitchen fade around her as she continued on with the task at hand; peeling potatoes for their evening meal. She licked her lips and didn't realize that she had a smile plastered on her face until someone nudged her and then the whole room fell into a fit of laughter. "What?" she said as she snapped herself out of it.

"You tell us, honey. You've been a million miles away since Daryl walked you to the door. What gives?" Lori leaned on her elbows, chin in her palm on the counter as she waited for Carol's answer. She had a feeling she knew what had taken place either out in the woods or in that tent when the rain fell. She was wearing his shirt after all.

Carol felt her cheeks heat up as the blush crept up her cheeks. She looked down at her hands and the knife she held in one hand and the potato in the other. "Oh, Lori. Stop it..." she chided. "Just thinking, I suppose."

Beth sat at the table watching all of the older women with rapt attention. She turned her head slightly. "I don't get it..."

Maggie rolled her eyes. "Elizabeth Greene!" she scolded. "You know exactly what we're talkin' 'bout. You get the same look in your eyes whenever Jimmy walks into the room, and don't you go denying it either..."

Beth blushed then. She looked at Carol. "You and him? Really?" She'd been scared to death of him since he'd arrived on the farm. "Don't he scare you, ma'am?"

Carol let out a soft chuckle then, "Trust me, I've dealt with a lot worse than Daryl Dixon, and I'll tell all of you a little secret, but you gotta swear you won't let on..." She looked around the room, but she let her eyes rest on Beth. She watched as the young girl crossed over her heart and began to smile. "He's not half as tough as he looks. You just can't let him know you aren't afraid of him. Hurts his pride... He's no more harmful than a pussy cat."

Shane stepped into the kitchen. "Well, I know you ladies aren't talking 'bout me. I'm wild as a bear and just as cuddly..." He gave Andrea a wink then. "Just ask her..." He grabbed an apple off the counter.

Andrea rolled her eyes. "Cuddly isn't a word I'd use to label you, you big ass. Get out of here. "We're working on dinner." She took the apple from him and replaced it. "You eat those and there won't be dessert tonight. Patricia's making apple pie."

Shane's eyes lit up and his mouth watered. "Yes, ma'am." He put his hands up and started backing out of the kitchen. "just came in here to let you know that Daryl and me are going to help Hershel mend a fence down in the south pasture. Some the cows got out and Glenn and Jimmy are wrangling them up. Should see Glenn trying to play cowboy. Rather funny..." He gave them a wave and was gone.

All the women turned to look at Carol then, but it was Patricia that spoke up. "So...spill it, Carol. What is going on with you and the Dixon boy."

"A lady never kisses and tells..." She smirked and went right on back to peeling potatoes. That was how she left it. She had to give them something or they'd never leave her alone. She couldn't risk any of them bringing it up at dinner that night.

The kitchen went back to work as a whole. Each of them let her words tumble around in their head and drew their own conclusions. Some of them kept stealing glances at Carol as they worked, blushes creeping onto their cheeks as they let their imaginations run rampant.

Shane let out a soft chuckle and clapped Daryl on the back. "Man, you best be glad I'm the one that went in there and not you. I think they'd have eaten you alive..." He let out a low whistle and a chuckle.

Daryl's eyes narrowed as he glanced up toward the house then back at Shane. "'Xactly why I told 'er I wasn't coming in there. Bunch a hens all cluckin' 'round peckin' for whatever x-rated morsel they can get greedy lil fingers on." He snorted low and shook his head. He could feel his stomach bubbling from fear mostly, but there was a bit of annoyance too. "Women."