Okay anyone who read A woman's worth will know this story. It was removed as it didn't fit into the M rating but now I have re-vamped it so it more than does fit within the M rating. I have also posted the un-tamed version on under SpikesSlayer08 if you want to read the full untamed version. Big thank you to my Beta Jaded79 for going over these chapters for me, hope oyu enjoy.

Chapter 1

Learning your place

Daryl could hear the screams rip through the night as they ran up the hill towards their camp. He knew Merle would be pissed about being left on that rooftop but Daryl figured he would yell a bit, maybe throw a punch or two; but from the screams it sounded like they were being ripped apart. That's when he heard it, the groans.

"Walkers," he whispered to Rick, trying to keep his voice low. They sped up, running faster, moving through the woods and coming out past the tents and parked cars.

They started firing, shooting anything dead that was moving but they knew from the screams they were too late to save everyone. Daryl could see Ed hiding in one of the cars and he knew he shouldn't have been stunned to realise the man – if you could call him that – had left his wife and daughter to fend for themselves.

He could see Carol had put Sophia between herself and a car. She had a thick piece of wood in her hands and was ready to do what she had to, to protect her daughter but she was out numbered as three walkers started to surround her.

Raising his bow, he shot one in the back in the head with an arrow; raising his gun, he shot the second but the last was on her, grabbing for the terrified woman. Kicking it back, she swung the wood hitting it in the head, not hard enough to put it down but it did stumble backwards giving Daryl the time to run up behind it, thrusting a knife into its skull, ending it.

"Stay behind me," he ordered them, turning and holding his bow up shooting another walker that was stumbling towards them. Looking around he could see bodies everywhere, some of the living, mostly those of the long dead; he turned to face Carol and Sophia once he realised it was safe.

"Are you both alright? Did you get bit or scratched?" Carol shook her head shocked that Daryl Dixon had come to their rescue but beyond grateful.

"No we're fine, thank you," she gasped hugging him tightly before she could stop herself. He stood there stiffly for a moment before he embraced her briefly, the smell of soap and lavender assaulted his senses and he decided right there that it was the best smell in the world.

"It was nothing," he huffed as they pulled apart, looking into her eyes. He could get lost in those blue eyes but the stitching sound of her deadbeat husband broke the trance.

"Hey redneck, how about you get your hands off my wife!" Ed spat, moving to stand in front of Carol. Rick could see this was going to end badly and moved to stand by Daryl.

"Listen here, you piece of shit if it wasn't for me, your wife would be dead," Daryl hissed at him moving to get in Ed's face. "And where the hell were you when they were surrounded by walkers? Hiding in a car like the god damn coward you are." Ed laughed out loud at this and Daryl saw red, smashing his fist into Ed's face. Ed fell to the ground.

Carol grabbed Sophia's hand moving her, she had moved to help Ed when Shane hit him earlier today; but never again, he had left her and Sophia to die. He had seen them surrounded and she had to watch as he fled to the safety of that car. Ed had done so many horrible things to them but this was by far the worst; he had traded the life of their daughter to save his own, from here on out she refused to defend him. Daryl kicked the man in the guts and Rick and Shane quickly grabbed him, pulling him away.

"You made your point Daryl," Rick whispered in his ear as he jerked away from them, storming over to his tent. Rick kneeled down to look at Ed's already bruised face.

"You have a habit of rubbing people the wrong way, so how about from now on you just keep to yourself," Rick suggested. Ed nodded slowly.

"You won't have to worry, in the morning I'll be taking my family and we will be going our own way," Ed announced. Carol felt panic burn through her; after tonight she didn't trust Ed to keep them safe.

"Well we'll see what the morning brings," Rick sighed standing to his feet. He could see Daryl pacing out in front of his tent and knew the man had heard Ed's announcement. Did Daryl have feelings for Carol?, he couldn't help but wonder. Daryl had looked almost scared when he saw her and Sophia cornered by walkers. Rick decided to leave it for now; he moved to help start the clean-up.

By the next morning, everyone was moving around the camp packing up. Daryl had helped T-Dog burn the large pile of dead walkers, then Glenn and T-Dog had moved to start digging holes for their dead loved ones lost in the attack last night. Rick, Shane and Daryl were looking at maps discussing the best place to head and once they had decided on heading towards the CDC, Shane had moved off to pack up his stuff.

Rick had been watching Daryl closely and aside from the occasional nod or grunt he hadn't really had much of an opinion about where they headed next. Mostly because Daryl was too distracted watching as Ed hurried along Carol and Sophia into packing up their stuff to head away from the group.

"So what are you thinking?" Rick asked looking at Daryl. "Daryl?" he spoke trying to get the man's attention.

"Huh? Oh yeah CDC great," he spoke flippantly looking at Rick before turning his attention back to Carol and Sophia.

"Not the CDC, about Ed taking Carol and Sophia alone?" This got Daryl's attention, finally a topic he had an opinion about.

"I think he proved last night that he only cares about himself and if he had to, he would kick their feet out from under them to save his own skin… twenty four hours and I bet they are both dead or worse, turned." Daryl sighed leaning on the car hood.

"I agree," Rick spoke as Daryl looked at him.

"So what do we do?" Daryl asked hoping the former cop would back him up.

"I think we should have a nice chat with Ed in private." Daryl couldn't help but smirk.

"I think that's a great idea, you're not half bad Rick… for a cop," Daryl smiled.

"I'll take that as a compliment… I think," Rick smiled. Daryl nodded pointing at Ed as they watched the man head into the woods, no doubt to go to the bathroom before heading out.

Daryl and Rick moved following him unnoticed by anyone else. They could see him behind the tree and knowing what he was doing they stood waiting. Daryl couldn't help but smile at the look on Ed's face when he came around the tree to head back to camp and saw the two of them standing there. Daryl saw the panic in Ed's eyes as he looked around for an escape but when he went to move, Rick raised his gun.

"Ah uh, we just want to talk," Rick said seeing the man stop, looking at them fearfully. Daryl moved in front of Ed till his back was pushed up against the tree, buck knife in Daryl's hand. He had to use all his will power not to stab the man right there and then.

"Now Ed it's no secret what I think of you and I would like nothing better than to see the back of you, but you're not taking Carol and Sophia anywhere, they stay with the group," Daryl told him.

"They're my family, they go where I go," Ed spat.

"Then you stay too, that or I kill you and tell everyone a walker got you." Daryl saw the panic in the man's eyes and knew he was finally getting through to him. "We'll even make it look like your idea, you can say you had a change of heart and that it's safer for you all if the groups stays together; that way you won't look like the coward piece of shit we both know you are… deal?" Ed nodded quickly as the two men smiled, moving back to the camp feeling pleased with themselves.

Ten minutes later everyone was packed up and ready to head out, the walkers had been burnt and their dead buried, they had all decided the CDC was their best hope. Rick didn't trust Ed as far as he could throw him so he decided to put people in groups in the cars.

"Okay Dale and Glenn you both go in the RV, Andrea you can go with Shane, Daryl and T-Dog you go together and Lori, me and Carl will go with Ed, Carol and Sophia." Carol looked up at this, surprised.

"But I thought…," she started but Rick cut her off.

"Didn't Ed tell you? He decided it was safer if we all stay together, isn't that right Ed?"

"Ah yeah," he nodded agreeing. Carol could tell Ed hadn't made the choice on his own free will but whatever happened, she was thankful; they had probably saved both her and Sophia's lives.

"All right let's move out." Everyone nodded, heading for their designated cars. Daryl moved near her, his hand brushing past her arm causing shivers to run through her.

She looked up to see Daryl nod at her and she couldn't help but smile as she slipped into the back of the car. Knowing Daryl Dixon was looking out for them made her feel safe and warm. She could see Ed shooting daggers at her and she knew once they stopped and things calmed down she would be hearing about this again, but at this stage she just couldn't seem to care.