Beth didn't know why she had trouble sleeping that night. Sure, nobody from Hershel's farm had gotten a full night's sleep in a while, but Beth usually didn't have any problem dozing for a couple hours. Judith was peacefully sleeping in her crib, and everyone else had gone to bed, so there was no noise keeping her up. Maybe it was just going to be another sleepless night—it wasn't her first, and it wouldn't be her last.
She decided she needed some air, and soon found herself on the moonlit roof of their cell block. "Beth," a gruff voice greeted her, and Beth realized she hadn't been the only one who needed air.
"Hi," she greeted Daryl. He nodded at her, taking a drag off a cigarette.
"Baby keepin' ya awake or somethin'?" Daryl asked. He knew that the baby got up often through the night, and Beth was the one left to care for her.
"No, she's sleepin'. I just needed some air," she replied. "What's keepin' you awake?" Beth knew Daryl wasn't one to talk, but maybe he would open up to her. Sure, maybe he just didn't sleep—not many of them did anymore—but Beth thought there might be something else on his mind.
He sighed. "It's just...Merle. It's been different since him n' the rest of the Woodbury folk come to live here, y'know? Can't help thinking somethin's gunna happen." He took another drag off his cigarette as he finished speaking.
Beth nodded in understanding. "There's been a different sort of energy since they came here. It'll pass. Merle cares for you, and he knows how protective you are over the group. He's not gunna do anything to any of us if he thinks it's gunna set you off." She'd seen Daryl angry before, and she knew his older brother wouldn't want to cross that line. Once upon a time he would have, but not anymore. "It'll pass, once everyone's used to them bein' around. It'll pass, you'll see."
Daryl looked at the pretty blonde. "Y'know, you're pretty smart for a 17 year old. Ya know how to read people."
"Eighteen," Beth corrected him. "My birthday was last month. I've been keeping track of the months and everything since this all started."
Daryl finished his cigarette and muttered a quick 'happy birthday' to her. Beth smiled at him, then turned to go back inside. She paused mid-step, then looked back to Daryl. "You got another one of those?" she asked, gesturing towards the cigarette butt Daryl was now extinguishing, stomping on it with his boot.
Daryl gave her a look of surprise. He'd thought Beth was a "good girl"—no drinks, no smokes, no nothin'. Apparently he'd underestimated her. "You sure? Your daddy's gunna be mad if he catches ya." He stated.
Beth had never smoked in her life, of course, but some sudden impulse told her to take one. "Oh well. I need it."He handed her the cigarette and a small zippo lighter. She placed the cigarette between her lips and lit it. When she exhaled, she sighed with relief. "Guess they do help with nerves," she mused aloud.
Daryl cracked a rare smile. "Not bad, for a newbie. Most people have coughin' fits their first time smokin'."
Beth shrugged, taking another drag. "My brother Shawn used to smoke. I'm kinda used to it." That was the last thing said between the pair that night, though neither of them went inside for a while. Beth offered him another smile and a 'goodnight' when she went back inside the prison.