The prison was under attack from Woodbury. The Governor's men had ripped right through the fencing allowing the walkers back in to their future crop field. Daryl and Merle made it in time to save Rick from a bunch of walkers that wanted to chew through his arm but too late to stop the attack or kill the Governor. Hershel had barely made it out of the field with the help of Glenn and Michonne. The damage had been done. Woodbury's warning was received load and clear. The Rick, Daryl and Merle had to fight their way up to the others. Dozens of walkers now littered the once clear field. It was sickening to look at, all their hard work ruined in five minutes. There secure home breached.
Axel had been shot in the head luckily for him it was just a graze. Carol was fussing over him as Rick, Daryl and Merle made it through the only fencing left. Hershel was the first to come over to the trio, he patted Daryl on the back welcoming him back after his time way. Rick walked off, back into the prison. Glenn glared from the other side of the courtyard. Daryl knew then that today was going to be a long day.
As soon as they'd made it inside the cell block, Merle was put in a cell in the mass hall. He wasn't allowed into the C block at all. So Daryl left him there because he really wanted his bed and perch, but as he moved towards his perch he noticed it was empty. No mattress on the floor no pile of spare shirts, his poncho was gone as well as his spare rifle and bows.
"We moved it all into a cell because we didn't know if you were coming back." Carol stood on the stairs looking up at him. She still had Axel's blood on the side of her face and a rifle over her shoulder. She smiled up at him and pointed to one of the previously empty cell looks at the end of the top row.
"Axel, alright?" Daryl asked knowing from the way she'd fussed over him that she liked the guy. Which was good because while she was a great friend and they could have a laugh? Daryl didn't see her in a romantic sense like she wanted and maybe her and Axel could have that relationship. He reached his cell and noticed Carol hadn't replied yet, turning his head he noticed she had her head down, her hands ringing together. "He ain't dead is he?"
"No, he's fine it's just everyone has asked me how he is instead of asking him." Carol wasn't upset just stating the truth. She wasn't Axel's wife or partner so why was everyone asking her. All she did was talk to the guy and that didn't mean anything. Daryl just looked at her, his head tilled like he knew exactly what she was trying to say. That's why she liked Daryl. He'd listen even if he didn't know the answer. He was about to question her when there was a shout.
"Daryl, come quick!" Carl shouted from the mess hall, Daryl pulled his crossbow tighter over his back and darting past Carol down the stairs and into the mess hall. When he got outside Merle, Rick and Michonne were already there.
They watched as Andrea struggled up the field with a walker on a pole held in front of her but she wasn't alone. A girl carrying a child, followed closely behind her, hand gun held out ready to shoot any walker that got to close. As they got closer up the field the prison group realised who the girl was.
"Get the god damn gate open!" Daryl bellowed as he saw the walkers closing in on the trio. He ran out of the gate shooting his crossbow at any of the dead that got too close to them. Andrea and the girl started running then trying to get to the gates before they were devoured. They'd just cleared the gates Daryl on their tail as Michonne closed them. Andrea had dropped the walker on a stick before reaching the gates. Once the pair had their breathing back to normal, the interrogation started. Rick patted the two off them down removing all their weapons and passed their bag packs to Glenn, who started looking through them.
"What are you doing here?" Rick questioned a crazy look in his eyes. Andrea answered
"I'm here to set a truce, between you and Woodbury." She looked hopeful. It was a shame that Daryl's next words broke that look on his face.
"We're ya sent before or after he drove through the fences and shot at us?" Daryl stared hard at Andrea, so not to think of their saviour of Woodbury holding a little boy three feet away from him.
"Philip told me you fired first?" Andrea was confused.
"Philip, my my, ain't ya friendly with the Governor now?" Merle chirped from the background.
"He fired on us." Rick had his jaw clenched as he spoke his hand holding his gun gesturing wildly. Andrea's reply was cut off by a sigh.
"If she's too blind ta see the Governor's playin' her, we're going to have a really long day and I'd rather my son didn't get burnt, is that offer is available?" that was the mysterious saviour talking now, she shifted her weight and pulled the toddler up higher on her hip. The toddle had a pair of headphones on and seemed oblivious to the conversation. Rick and Daryl looked at each other before Daryl shrugged and picked up the girls backpack, leading her into the cellblock. The first empty cell they found was the one Daryl put the backpack down in. the girl placed the little boy down on the bottom bunk fixing his earphones on his head and turned to Daryl who was staring at the floor, scoffing his boots. She brushed a stray hair behind her ear and bites her lip before she had the courage to talk to the man that was once her neighbour and best friend.
"Now ya understand why I couldn't leave with ya, right?" she had to make sure he knew the reason behind her not going with him when the group escaped from Woodbury.
"Ya got a kid" Daryl said ashamed that he'd tried to get her to leave now but she hadn't been pregnant or dating anyone before the walkers came and that kid looked too old to be hers.
"Daryl, he ain't mine." She knew from the look on his face that he was confused. "When my par got bite, I left for Atlanta got half way there before I meet a women and her baby. The woman was near half dead. She made me take the baby, told me she tried for Atlanta it was overrun. So I took him, and headed for south till I found Woodbury." the girl grabbed her bag then opened it and pulled out a bottle of water, opening the lid she passed it to the boy who took a gulp and passed it back.
"What's his name?" Daryl asked, understanding that she must have been through hell the past two years. She smiled then and turning to the boy took his earphones off she picked him up turning him towards Daryl as she spoke.
"Jessie, meet Daryl." The little boy wiggled down from his place on his mother's hip and ran over to Daryl. Wrapping his arms around Daryl leg he looked up at him smiling.
"Dal!" he shouted looking proud. The girl chuckled behind the child's head as she watched Daryl's reaction. Which went from shocked to amused. Daryl rested his hand on the back of the toddlers head rubbing his shaggy brown hair. The boys blue eyes shined with happiness. Daryl smiled at him. He always wondered if he'd have kids of his own but with the rise of the walkers his hope of a family disappeared. He'd protect Jessie and his mother because they were part of his family now like the girl should have been years ago then maybe the kid hugging his leg would have been his own.
"Daryl, Andrea's here!" Carol exclaimed as she entered the cell her face excited until she noticed his guests. "Oh who are you?" her tone turned suspicious like this female stranger wasn't welcome here, in this cell with Daryl.
"I'm Jasmin, who are ya?" the girl replied not liking the way the silver haired women eyed Daryl.
"Carol. Who's this?" Carol had only just noticed the little boy clinging to Daryl leg and instincts came to the conclusion the boy was his.
"His names Jessie Dixon."
Daryl butted into the conversation then before Jasmin could tell her the truth. It was none of Carol's business.
"Oh, I… you never said you had a child." Carol sighed as she thought of the child she'd lost, upset she left the cell.
"Why'd ya lie to her?" Jasmin asked angry. She picked her son up then taking him away from Daryl.
"Ain't any of 'er business. Be easier for everyone if they think he's mine." Daryl was hurt by her action and he missed the warmth of happiness Jessie gave him.
"Daryl, I ain't here to be protected. I'm here to help ya group fight The Governor, if they don't want my help fine I'll go but there ain't a reason to lie to 'em." She always knew how to make him feel like a naughty child being told off by his mother but she was right he'd tell Carol the truth later. He left then heading for his own cage needing to think things through.
He'd been in his cell for about an hour, when Jasmin walked in and sat next to him on his bottom bunk, he shifted his legs giving her more space but carried on fiddling with his arrow trying to get the quiver straight until she took it out of his hand. She stood up then arrow in hand and paced doing the same thing with the arrow that Daryl had seconds ago. Daryl watched her move. Her ponytail swished back and forth, she bit her lip, her shirt sleeves wrinkled and her tight jean clad thighs brushed each other as she paced. Daryl had to stop her before she wore the floor out so he stood and grabbed her arm to get her attention and it did just that. She dropped the arrow and throws herself at Daryl wrapping her arms around his neck and her legs around his hips. Daryl stumbled back till he was touching the wall. He wrapped his arms around her thighs holding her up.
"I missed you Daryl as soon as you left for Atlanta I regretted not going with you. I should have chosen you over my Par, I'm sorry." She whispered her apology into his neck as she rested her face on his shoulder. Daryl spun them around, once the apology has sunk into his mind. He held her on the wall and looked her in the eyes his hands now above her head, palms flat to the wall.
"Ya ain't got nothin' to apologise for." He said making it clear, their noses brushed as he spoke and a spark ignited in the pair. Their eyes darkened and their breathing became laboured they lent into each other more till their lips brushed.
"Daryl, Andrea's leavin'." Rick proclaimed just before the pairs embrace met his eyes. He turned away and walked back out of the Daryl's cell pretending he hadn't just witnessed it. Daryl and Jasmin separated from each other, the moment ruined.
"I should go and check Jessie's okay." Jasmin pointed out needing to get out of Daryl's cell as soon as possible.
"Ya, I should go and say bye to Andrea." The pair of them moved embarrassed towards the cells entrance only to bump into each other and then they laughed, defusing the tension between the pair.
Andrea was getting a last hug in from everyone, when Daryl arrived. He nodded at Andrea as she looked up at him.
"I guess I'll see you all?" Andrea smiled looking them all over again. That's when Jasmin comes and stands next to Daryl, Jessie in her arms.
They all head outside to the early evening sun and watched as Andrea drove out of the prison in one of the cars left in the car park.