Alright guys, last chapter! I am SOO very sorry for the horribly long wait, but school and life beckoned. I got inspired by Sundays episode and thought I'd give you guys the finale. Enjoy some adorable lemons!

Michonne waits outside the doorway, slumped on the ground, watching the scene. Hershel is in with Rick now, the cell too small for them all to fit. Carl is in there too, she can hear his soft sobs as Hershel mops up his fathers face. Michonne closes her eyes and sees Rick's bloody face, so swollen and purple and beaten. She hears his screams as she watches Hershel hunch over him where he lies on the bunk, trying to reset his ribs it looks like. Trails of tears run down her cheeks but she doesn't make any sounds.

She was so stupid, so fucking stupid. She had been so confident that the Governor would follow her that she hadn't given a thought to how vulnerable Rick and Carl would become if she left, as well as Daryl and the others. Michonne grinds the heels of her hands into he eyes until she sees spots, trying to keep from letting out a sob. Rick was in such pain right now and she was in the position to have changed every bit of it. This helplessness she feels is all too familiar, and images of her daughters fill her mind.

Tyla, coming home from school crying because a crazy boy from school had bitten her. It was one of the attacks that had been happening around the city, rabies the news said. Tyla, hunched over and tearing open the stomach of their cat the next morning, her pink nightgown stained with blood.

Dania, screaming as she was dragged away by two walkers, ripping into her small throat. Michonne had just turned her back for a moment to check to see if the coast was clear, and in that moment her life ended. In the span of a week her two children, ex-husband, and boyfriend were all dead. Life lost its meaning.

Michonne sits in her misery as she continues to hear Rick scream and yell for them to stop. Carl tries to calm him, and it works for a while, until Hershel tries to reset Rick's shoulder. Michonne hears Rick groaning, his teeth gritted from trying not to scream again. Not too long later Hershel says he's done all he can for now. Rick has broken ribs, a broken nose and eye socket and several more badly bruised bones, maybe even fractured.

Even from her distance, Michonne can hear Rick's wheezing and unsteady breaths. She licks her lips and tries to tell herself that he is alright, that there will be no lasting damage. Hershel assures both her and Carl that he will live, but stresses that his recovery will be slow. Both the woman and the boy watch Hershel leave, then Carl turns to her. They stare at each other for a minute, and as much as he tries to suppress it, Carl's lip quivers slightly.

Michonne gulps back a sob and extends one of her arms, offering Carl a place beside her. Without waiting Carl strides over and sits close to her, tucking himself into the crook of her arm as she wraps it around his shoulders. She wraps her other arm around him too in a close hug and whispers in his ear that everything will be alright. Michonne lightly strokes his hair as she slowly feels him relax into their embrace.

"It's all my fault", the boy says, "If I hadn't-"

She cuts him off, "Don't even think that, okay? The Governor would have found a way in eventually. And besides, of all the people involved, you are the least at blame here, kid." The guilt is creeping in heavier and heavier on her conscious, but she doesn't say anything about it.

Hours pass and the two of them don't move. Carl eventually gets tired and, nearly asleep, lies his head in Michonne's lap. A feeling of deep sadness fills her as he does this, because it reminds her so much of the way her children had done the same thing. She puts those thoughts aside and focuses on the boy in front of her as she lightly strokes his scalp. Michonne hears Rick stir several times during the night, but never enough to make her think that he was awake. Daryl came to visit late into the night, after he and the others had returned from their run, which he assured her had been successful. Morning came and Carl woke up with a groan.

"He wake up at all?" Carl asks her. She shakes her head but gives a small smile.

"I'm sure he'll be awake soon."

Carl nods and stands up. He asks her if she wants anything, some food or something to drinks. She says no, but thank you.

After Carl leaves, Michonne gets heavily to her feet and takes the steps into the dark cell. It smells of stale blood and sweat in the cramped room. She slowly kneels down by his bed and stares deep into his swollen face but looks away after only a moment. Christ, he looks terrible. Deep gashes run down the right side of his face, the skin around his eye and brow nearly black from bruising. Michonne chokes back a sob, covering her mouth with her hands.

She really did love this man, completely and whole heartedly. Even when she had started feeling these things for him, weeks back now, she knew that she should ignore them. It was just too risky letting people into your heart in this world, the risk was too high that they would be lost. Even with this knowledge, she had let herself fall in love with Rick Grimes. And in some sick sort of irony, her leaving to keep him safe had lead to his current condition.

Unable to just kneel there and look at him any longer, she reaches behind her to grab a dish with water and a cloth, which Hershel had used to wipe the blood away hours before. Michonne rings the water out of it and begins to, very tenderly, dab at his face. She avoids the right side which carries the worst of the injuries. Next, she carefully unbuttons his shirt and wipes the cloth down his neck and shoulders, trying to cool him off as he appears to have been sweating throughout the night. Michonne wipes the cloth down his arms and chest, always careful not to move him.

His breaths relax somewhat and find a healthy rhythm and Michonne releases the sigh she didn't know she had been keeping. As broken as he was, and as much as the blame fell on her, he was alive. The Governor was dead, and Rick Grimes was not.

Rick's face twitches and his eyelids flutter. She hears a rough groan from deep in his throat and wishes so much that they had some kind of pain killers. All she can do is let some cool water drip from the cloth onto his scalp, hoping that this might calm him as he wakes.

He begins to stir in earnest now, though his whole body immediately seizes as he tries to move his torso and feels the intense sting of the broken bones there. Michonne smoothes one of her hands over his forehead, shushing him and trying to calm him. "Shh, shhh, it's alright, you're alright. We're back home."

Rick's one eye opens slightly, the other one swollen shut. His gaze is glazed and unsteady, but still he tries to focus on her. The whites of his eye are stained red from a popped blood vessel and there is dried blood in the corners of his eyes.

"Carl," He stammers, his voice as rough and hollow as she has ever heard it, "Where is he?"

"He's fine, he's fine. Everyone's fine." Michonne reassures him, and she sees his relief as he lets himself fall back into the mattress. He turns his head, "And you, you hurt?"

The sincerity in his voice almost makes her laugh. Of course, nearly beaten to death and Rick Grimes was curious if she was hurt.

Michonne lets a tear run down her face as she gives a wet smile and shakes her head, "No, I'm perfect."

He nods once, then winces. "You…" He swallows hard, "You came back I see."

This time, Michonne does laugh. "Didn't I promise you that I would?"

XXX

Michonne looks at Rick and knows exactly what the smile that he gives her means. She sighs dramatically and smacks her lips. "Something you wanna say, Grimes?"

He smiles wider and shakes his head, "Nope, just thinking."

"Oh yeah, what about?" She asks, absently looking through the drawers of the dresser, a wry smirk on her face. She and Rick were on a routine supplies run, going house to house looking for anything of use.

"Just thinking how we don't need to be back for a couple hours…" He gives her a sidelong glance from where he stands, looking through the open closet, "Thought we might take advantage."

Michonne laughs, closes the empty drawer, and turns to face him. It had been nearly three months since the Governors death and Rick's healing had been slow. This was their first run together since it had all happened, and Rick had been only to eager to get out of the prison and accompany her. She hadn't left the prison since that day either, barely left his side, so she had been just as happy as he was for the opportunity.

They both knew it was for show. This was only the third house they had searched, and the tension between them was growing with each passing minute. Their time alone together had been minimal since he had gotten his strength back, and the prison hardly offered ample privacy for what they had in mind. Thank god for the watch tower, or Rick might just have gone crazy with want for this woman. He swore, he was like a teenage boy every time he saw her, he just couldn't control himself. And luckily for him, she was just as hungry for it as he was.

The sight of her here, now, leaning back against the bedside table with her lips slightly pouted like she knew he loved, it drove him mad. "You want to take advantage, huh?" She seductively trails one of her hands down her neck, between her breasts and stops at her belt.

He nods.

Michonne grins, "I'll try to be gentle with you." She begins to unbuckle her belt.

Rick feels a flurry of excitement in his loins. No matter how many times they fuck, he never gets tired of her. He too unbuckles his belt and throws it to the side. They watch each other get undressed, wordlessly making a game out of it, of who can draw it out the most. Michonne wins, she always does.

He strides forward, now in nothing but his briefs, and grabs her face with both hands. She inhales with anticipation as his lips trail kisses down her neck and chest before he falls to his knees before her, tonguing at her navel. Michonne rakes her hands through his hair as he, tantalizingly slowly, pulls her underwear down from around her hips, kissing her exposed flesh as he does this.

Seemingly displeased with his slow pace, Michonne pulls him up hard by the hair and he obeys, rising to kiss her lips again. He winces slightly as he feels a few hairs part company from his scalp, but they both just smile into each others mouths, still kissing.

"I thought you said-" He kisses her "you'd be gentle."

She gives a breathy laugh, "I guess I lied."

Both are grinning between kisses. "Good" he says, and he pushes her down hard on the bed just beside them.

Michonne inhales in surprise then laughs as she crawls back along the dusty bed, watching as he climbs on top of her. He loved her so much when she was like this, all playful and smitten. She sits up and pulls his briefs down past his hips, wasting no time pulling them down his legs and tossing them to the side. Michonne moves on top of him now and he lies back against the bed. Faint scars along his ribs still remain from his beating, but Michonne kisses each one as she trails her lips and tongue down his chest. She takes him into her mouth and he can feel her wrap her tongue around him as she begins moving her head. He places one hand on her head and the other arm he throws over his eyes, trying not to moan too loudly.

He lets her do this for a few minutes before his desire to be inside her overpowers him. Rick sits up and Michonne looks up at him. Oh god she was beautiful. He quickly changes their position so that he is once again on top of her, and presses his lips hard against he swollen ones, reaching down to begin to stroke her. Her head falls back against the pillow as he works her, leaving her neck extended and he plants kisses all over the taught, dark skin.

She wraps her strong legs around his waist and moans, wordlessly telling him she's ready. He moves his hand from her and aligns himself. As he enters her they share a sharp gasp of pleasure. He moves inside her again and again, both of them enjoying this slow, lazy sex that they so rarely had. Back at the prison it was always quick, never wanting to be disturbed. But here, they could take their time.

Rick's hand returns to her clit, the other arms at her head, bearing his weight. Their love-making is slow, but no less powerful than all their other times. Michonne's hands are tangled in his hair, pulling his face down to hers with every slow thrust. Her eyes are closed and she's biting her lip trying not to make a sound. As he moves above her he watches her do this and he cant help but smile wide at how beautiful she is, and how lucky he is to have her. To have found her in this fucked up world.

She opens her eyes and sees him smiling down at her. She smiles and laughs, cupping his cheek with one of her hands, "What's so funny?"

He shakes his head and, ever so softly, kisses the tip of her nose. Rick can feel the heat coming off of her skin. "Nothing. I was just thinking about how lucky I am."

She grins wide and brings her forehead to meet his. They breathe in each other for what seems a long time, both so incandescently happy to be sharing this moment. Whatever shit may be happening outside, how ever many walkers are waiting at the door, here, right now, they have each other. And how ever long they have left on this earth, Rick is confident that he will spend the rest of it with her, the woman he loves. As hard as it will be, they will carve out a niche for themselves and Carl and the others wherever they go. They will make for themselves a life that was worth living, even if everything around them seemed like hell. Rick and Michonne will fight everyday for their safety and their happiness.

This is the world they live in now.

XXX

FIN