And another new chapter. I got only one review on the one before that. Does that mean you're not interested in the story anymore/think it's boring now?
I'm gonna keep writing because I actually like it now, I'm just curious. Anyway, shit's about to go down!

setting: episodes 13 "Arrow In The Doorpost" and 15 "This Sorrowful Life"


Chapter 50 - An Unlikely Alliance

Daryl had been watching them for about five minutes now. The hunter was standing by the wall of the barn, staring through the dirty window, trying not to be seen by anyone. Just looking at the Governor sent a shiver down his spine. Last time he had seen that man he'd had to watch his best friend getting attacked by a walker, and right after that the man had tried to force him into killing his own brother. That, or getting killed himself. He tried to laugh at their enemy, because the eyepatch made him look like a ridiculous and terrible pirate. Even now he could almost hear Connor laugh at that, but just thinking about his friend made him clench his fists and grit his teeth. No, Connor wouldn't be laughing at the Governor right now. He would be standing right next to him, he would raise his gun and shoot that evil bastard right through the window. And for a moment Daryl actually considered it as well. They had checked out the whole place first, tracking, searching, looking for any other uninvited guests. Only one car had been there. Just the one. No one else seemed to be with the Governor.

It could be so easy. For just a moment Daryl actually raised his crossbow and took aim. He pointed the sharp tip of his arrow right at the man's head, finger resting on the trigger. He knew that that certainly wouldn't end this war, but it would end the life of one shady bastard. Who was a rapist, who was a sadist. He finally understood Connor as he was actually seeing the Governor right now. In person. Breathing. Alive. Daryl gritted his teeth even more to a point where it actually hurt. The struggle seemed to be going on forever, but when Rick started talking with the man and they both sat down he just couldn't do it. A loud gasp left his mouth, because he had been holding his breath for a whole bunch of seconds because of the tension. He lowered his crossbow and shook his head.

He couldn't do it.

He couldn't just murder a man in cold blood. Without any second thoughts. Yes, it was necessary, yes that man deserved to die, but not like this. He wasn't like that. He had never told Connor, but even back at the farm when he'd been about to kill Randall he secretly hadn't been so determined as he'd made his friend think. Even back then he'd had doubts. And maybe that made him feel a bit ashamed of himself. He wasn't Murphy MacManus, no matter how much he looked like that dead bastard. No. He wasn't like his friend's brother in that regard, and maybe he was a bit jealous of in that regard. But then he remembered the conversation he'd had with Rick and Herschel before they had left. The hunter had told them more about Connor's ideas, his plans, and all three of them had come to the conclusion that this was not how they worked.

It wasn't like they didn't want to kill people at all. Daryl included. It was just that they didn't want to if they could avoid it. And this talk going on in there right now, this was their way of handling things. They were good people. Just killing that bastard wouldn't make them any better than him and his Woodbury gang. Daryl grabbed his crossbow and walked away from the window to get back to Hershel and the car. He trusted Rick's instincts and abilities to protect himself, and truth was that he didn't really want to see and hear them talk. But he still couldn't fight that feeling of unease, because it was strange that the Governor was all on his own. Without any backup, without any people protecting his ass or just waiting to kill them in a hail of bullets. He wouldn't stop looking around as he saw Herschel come closer with the Hyundai.

"He's already in there. Sat down with Rick" he informed the old man and had a look inside the car to see if everything was alright. Herschel looked worried as well.

"I don't see any cars" he noticed and Daryl nodded. He'd been thinking the same just a second ago.

"Yeah, it don't feel right. Keep it running" he ordered and Herschel nodded.

Just then they heard the loud roaring of a car engine, coming from somewhere right.
Daryl looked up and raised his crossbow, ready to shoot any intruder who tried to shoot at them first.

One of Woodbury's large offroad trucks with its massive headlights and bumper bar was heading right for them, engine roaring like an angry animal. Daryl tried to keep his crossbow steady and aimed right at them, although it would be very easy for them to just run him over. He stood his ground and the car came to a halt in front of him. Daryl widened his eyes when he recognized two of the people who stepped out of the vehicle. Andrea was there, and he knew that he didn't really need to worry about her. Then there was one guy he recognized from the area but didn't really have a clue who he was. Those two people weren't even important. Who made his blood boil was the man that got out of back of the car, band-aid on his swollen nose, classes slightly crooked, and eyes just widened as much.

"The hell's he doing here?!" Daryl spat as he recognized the man, the doctor or professor or whatever he was, who had done good knows what kind of fucked up experiments to Connor when he had been bit back at Woodbury. He remembered the man lying there on the ground back that night when he had almost lost his friend, and he remembered what the Irishman had told him.

They'd tied me to that bed. Stuck needles in my arms and god knows where. I don't know. They'd taken blood samples. Stitched me back together.
Poked the old bite and the new one with all sortsa wacky shit.
They left me alone in tha room, and I broke my hand ta get outta there.

Part of him wanted that man to suffer for that, and once again he actually considered the trigger. At the same time he was just glad that Connor wasn't there, because he was pretty sure that the blonde would really kill him. But then he remembered the plan he had told Connor about just two days ago.

Think 'bout it. He could help you. And make us understand. Herschel's good enough for small injuries and all that, but he ain't got the knowledge t'do anything with your crap.
But four eyes, he might be able to do something.
Maybe even find a cure or something.

"It's you" the guy with the glasses observed in surprise, and Andrea used the time to approach the hunter and pressed his crossbow down.

"It's okay. It's just Milton. He won't harm anybody. We're here to settle this" she tried to calm the hunter down, but Daryl wouldn't stop glaring at Milton.

"Then why's your boyfriend already in there?" the younger Dixon growled and Andrea widened her eyes.

"He's here?"

"Yup" Daryl said and wouldn't lower his crossbow. Andrea let out an annoyed sigh and headed for the barn Rick and the Governor where talking in.

It was quiet for a moment, as the other Woodburian leaned against the car and just stared at Daryl intently.
Milton seemed a bit scared of the crossbow, but at the same time seemed rather curious and even excited about something.

"It''s you! I'm sorry but, did..did your friend make it?"

Daryl gritted his teeth.

"Yah mean the one yah cuffed to that bed and tortured in Frankenstein's laboratory? Yeah, sorry t'disappoint you, but he's doin fine."

"Yeah, what about the people y'all killed back at our town, sunshine?" the other man asked and Daryl pointed his crossbow at him instead.

"And you better watch your mouth, sunshine. T'hell are you? His butler?"

The man just chuckled and smirked. He seemed far more relaxed then most men Daryl had met over the past couple of months. And the hunter didn't like this at all. It was like he was keeping something secret, like he knew about something they didn't. Once again the hunter felt like he was being watched from all sides, and that made him even more nervous, even more angry.

"Look, if you and I are gonna be out here pointing guns at each other all day, do me a favor. Shut your mouth" the Woodburian said and Daryl approached him with clenched teeth. He let go of his crossbow with one hand and was ready to at least punch the man. They were only inches apart and the man wouldn't stop smirking to himself. He even seemed a little interested in Daryl, which weirded the hunter even more out. The tension was rising between them, ready to snap at any second, but then Herschel spoke up.

"We don't need this. If all goes south in there, we'll be at each other's throats soon enough" he and Daryl wouldn't stop staring at the man.

When Milton spoke up he got distracted though, and the guard from Woodbury used the time to withdraw.

"So, about your he with you? I need to talk to him."

Daryl frowned and eyed the man head to toe. Milton was holding on to a notepad with both his hands and it still looked like he really needed to get something off his chest. Daryl glared at the other man once more, and then he finally relaxed his arms and lowered his crossbow, leaving it hanging down his right arm.

"Why?" he growled and started biting his lower lip. Milton kept approaching him and started turning pages in his notepad.

"I've..well most of the phials where destroyed but I had two left. For the past couple of days I kept experimenting with his blood, and I've found some remarkable.."

"Hey, keep your distance four-eyes, will yah?" Daryl growled and the man abruptly stopped. He looked at Daryl and nodded.

"Okay, okay. But, is he here? If I could just talk to him then maybe.."

"He ain't here" Daryl muttered and eyed the man stubbornly.

Milton looked very disappointed.
He nodded and took another look at his notepad, and when he was just about to turn around and head back for the car the hunter called after him.

"Tell me 'bout it then. What did yah find?"

Connor was actually really worried about his bitten shoulder by now. It wasn't like it was anywhere near as bad as last time he had been bit, but this was also pretty nasty. He could feel and see that there was a serious infection going on now. This was day three, and it seemed to just get worse now that he wasn't really doing anything ever since the group had locked him up. He was supposed to rest, but it was the resting that made it worse, like all the not doing anything locked up his muscles and made the wound even more angry, to a point where it was actually starting to suppurate, no matter how many times he took antibiotics and no matter how many times he cleaned it. It was kind of logical, considering that the wound was large and had been caused by a dead rotting person with rotting teeth that'd still been stuffed with other pieces of rotting flesh.

Just thinking about it nearly made him puke. He needed to get the fuck out of this cell. He needed to move, he needed fresh air, he needed to run and leave and follow Daryl. The Irishman thought that it was incredibly stupid to just be sitting here like a sissy, tending his stupid wounds instead of looking after his best friend, who was risking his ass out there. He wanted to end it, he wanted to kill the Governor because this whole thing was too perfect. He knew where that fucked up psycho was right now, so all he needed to do was get out of this cell, right? Connor grabbed the cell door with his healthy hand and ignored the sharp pain that built up in his shoulder as he kept pulling and pulling, getting angrier with every single time he failed to open it. Because this was iron in his way, and there was no one out there to help him get out this time. He was all alone, and he was locked. Right then he heard some talking coming from the dining hall next door, and it sounded like he wasn't the only one being pissed because of the whole Daryl leaving thing.

"What we should be doin' is loadin some of this firepower in a truck and pay a visit to the Governor. We know where he is right now" he heard Merle's voice echo through the entire block, which made him snort.

It felt like the older Dixon was speaking out everything he was thinking right now, and although he really hated the guy he kind of had to agree with that bastard there. Connor tried to have a look outside his cell but couldn't really see what was going on.

"You suggest that we just go in and kill him?"

The Irishman automatically nodded, as if he was part of the conversation. Once again Merle seemed to finally agree with Connor, and after the talk yesterday the Irishman was actually surprised to realize that. Maybe this was the part where they could finally start working together? Daryl was his friend, that was true, but he was also a damn fine leverage to get the older Dixon to work with him. If only he could draw attention to himself...

"Yeah I am" Merle answered Glenn and Connor froze again, because he didn't want to miss anything.

"We told Rick and Daryl that we'd stay put" he heard Michonne say and shook his head with an annoyed growl.

"Fuck that, lady. Fella's right, man" the Irishman muttered and tried to use his rosary on the bars to make some sort of noise.

He didn't want to yell because this was too obvious, and he didn't want everyone to come in here.
He just needed that stupid redneck for Christ's fucking sakes.

"Yeah I've changed my mind, sweetheart. Not bein at the sideline with my brother out there ain't sittin right with me" Merle said and made Connor freeze again.

He couldn't believe that he was actually really hearing that. Maybe this really was his lucky day. Maybe this was the day he could kill the Governor and end this whole kindergarten bullshit. He needed to get out, he needed to find Daryl, he needed to get to this freak, and maybe this time he had actually found an ally rather than someone who would just lock him up and keep him out of this whole thing. It was an unlikely alliance, but it needed to fucking happen! Connor started rattling again and got louder. The talking next door wouldn't stop.

"The three of them are right in the middle of it. No idea we're coming, they could get taken hostage or killed. Thousand things could go wrong" he heard Glenn say and finally had enough.

"That's exactly te fucking point!" Connor yelled as loud as he could, knowing that he would be heard. Now the anger and fear had fully taken control of his body. Daryl was all alone out there and so close to all these psychos that had tortured the both of them just a couple of days ago. He couldn't understand how Glenn and the others really could be so stupid, didn't get how they kept him locked up but not Merle, how they wouldn't go and help their people and probably save their lives. Although he couldn't see it he just knew that Daryl's brother was nodding in approval right now.

"Thousand things will go wrong. Listen to blondie, Chinaman."

It was quiet for a while until Glenn finally answered.

"It's not the right move. Not now! Can't take the risk of putting them in the crossfire. That's my decision and it's final."

Several footsteps could be heard after that, and with a final loud bang of a door there was silence. Connor listened up for a couple of minutes until he was sure that there was still someone with him inside this cell block. He moved closer to the bars again and tried to make out the person, but the angle wasn't right, so there was no other option but call out.

"Merle?" he asked carefully, and after waiting for a bit he heard the reassuring answer.

"Right here, blondie" he heard the angry growl, and for the first time he was actually glad to hear that voice, no matter how much he hated it.

"Move yer ass over her fer a second, will ye?"

He didn't expect the older Dixon to do it without insulting him somehow first, but much to his surprise Merle entered the block right away. He looked different today, there was no cocky smile on his face and he didn't seem so dangerous, for the first time he actually looked worried, even a little upset. As soon as the Irishman saw his friend's brother he nodded and looked him straight in the eye.

"Do ye even know where they're at?"

Merle glared at him and shook his head after a moment.

"Was plannin on beating that outta the Chinese kid. Besides, ain't gonna be so hard t'find a little hut right in the middle of it all."

Connor leaned against the cell door and shook his head.

"No need ta be searching around. I know te location."

Merle raised an eyebrow.

"Lemme out and we go out there, kill te Governor and get yer brother back" the blonde went on and the older Dixon snorted and shook his head.

"I don't need no help. Besides, as soon as we're done with the Governor, 'm gonna drag sweet Darylena with me and leave for good. Y'all people are just too stupid, and ain't no way 'm gonna let y'all kill my baby brother over this" the older Dixon answered and was about to leave, but then Connor already called after him again.

"Ye know he ain't gonna leave. Especially with me still bein right here."

Merle froze and the Irishman could actually see how tense the redneck's shoulders got because of that remark.

"He likes it here. With those people. And even if he was gonna leave with ye, ain't no way he's gonna leave without me."

Merle still wouldn't say anything, but turned around to stare at the Irishman.

"He wants both of us just like you and me want him. Safe and sound. And we both want that evil fuck dead. So, I know te location, you know the area, you got te key. Yer Daryl's brother, I'm his friend. We're the only two who get te situation and who all those people out there try ta keep outta their business. So why not work against them as well? Why not work tagether? Let's make a deal. You do that fer me, I'll keep my distance ta Daryl. I'll stop calling him brother and I won't put a hand on him anymore. Deal?"