Hello, again everyone! Yes, I know I haven't been updating like I should be but I had a bit of writers block with this one. I'm not gonna bore you, so with out further ado here is chapter 3!

I own nothing and no one, all characters belong to the guy who came up with the comics.

Also this is MPreg, AU (NO ZOMBIES), Out of character for some, and other things ill mention later.

Chapter 3: They Meet

"Hey, Rick!"

"What's up, Rick?"

"Rick, how's it going?"

As, he walked along, numerous people he interacted with, some he actually saved from many accidents, fires, car wrecks. After every incident, these people thanked him and although he always said there was no reason for them to thank him, he was just doing his job, doing what he loved. People still thanked him, whether it was words, gifts, etc… Rick wasn't paying attention, what he was focused on was a vivid dream that had been haunting him for the past couple of weeks, he just couldn't decipher what it meant. The dream started the same way, he'd be laying there in darkness, than he'd look above and he'd see the brightest, bluest eyes he'd ever seen. These eyes weren't just blue they were sapphire blue, but for some reasons these eyes also held what looked like pain and fear.

'Why do these eyes hold such fear?'

He would try to talk to the person with those eyes but they would shrink away and disappear before he had the chance; then he would wake up feeling confused mostly. He wanted to meet the person behind those eyes and get to know them and find and understand why they held so much pain and what exactly caused it.

Honk. Honk. Honk.

Rick was distracted by thinking, he didn't hear or see the person honking at him.

"Rick! Rick, ya' hear me?"

Rick snapped out of his haze, when he heard someone call his name.

"Rick, you there son?"

Rick looked up and smiled at Hershal. "Yea, Hershal I'm still here. So what's up?"

'Rick. I'm in a small bind. There's a demonstration at the firehouse today and Shane flaked on me."

"I keep telling you, Hershal. Shane can't be trusted with the important things. He's too much of a party boy."

"I know and yet I can't seem to learn."

"Okay, okay. What can I do?"

"I need you to do the talking and maybe put on the suit. I'll be there to help you out but mostly it will be you."

Rick sat there and pondered what Hershal said. He wanted to relax today, maybe do some shopping in fact, but he couldn't let Hershal down it just wasn't in his nature.

"Alright, Hershal. What time are we gonna be there?"

"Actually, we're supposed to have started roughly about ten minutes ago. Glenn is at the firehouse making sure everyone is comfortable there."- Hershal said with a smile

"Who else is helping with this little impromptu assignment of yours?"

"I'll tell you on the way?"-hershal looked at Rick with a pleading look. Rick just laughed while he loaded himself and his boys into Hershal's truck.

"I appreciate you doing this, Rick. I know today was supposed to be one of your days off, but we're in a bind and this thing has been planned for weeks and we cannot cancel right now."

"Hershal, you don't have to explain, yes I'll help you. But you will still owe me for this."

"What happened to doing something for the betterment of another and not expecting something out of it?"

"Well, who said you can't do both?"-Rick was smiling from ear to ear while his eyes shined with mischief. Hershal chuckled with merth as he started the car.

"And, Rick? The dogs sit in the back."

Scene switches to Daryl and Carl…

Daryl and Carl pulled up to the firehouse as Carl was bouncing in his seat but also having a look of something akin to concern maybe worry.

'Is he still thinkin' 'bout this morning; about the nightmares? He's just a boy. But he….does he remember enough about HIM?'

"Mom?"

Daryl looked at Carl and instantly started smirking.

"Yeah, baby?"

"Do you ever…?"

"Do I ever what? Get sick, get stomach aches, blow milk out my nose?"- Daryl said with a smile

"No. Do you ever…get lonely?"

"Why you asking?"-Daryl knew why his son was asking, all Daryl did was work and come home and take care of Carl. He didn't have many friends, or much of a social life but he didn't care, he loved his son. If him not having a social life meant his son being safe and happy, then he would make those sacrifices, then he would and he would repeat them over and over again.

"Carl, baby. Don't worry about me, okay."

"But, mom…"

"No, buts just listen to me. I love you and I want you to be happy. When you're happy then I'm happy. For right now, I just want to take of you. I'll find someone to be with just not now sweetheart. If I'm meant to be with someone it will happen on its own, okay?"

"Okay. But when you do get with someone, I'm gonna make sure they're nice to you or they won't be allowed near you."

Daryl laughed at his son, and continued to say-"Okay tiger. You can be my dating watchdog. I bring someone home and you sniff out if they're good enough for me or not. Deal?"

"Yeah, deal."

"Let's go."

Daryl gave his son a big wet kiss upon his cheek and exited the car.

As he and Carl walked to the firehouse, Daryl saw at least 5 other families and some other individuals that just came to have something to do.

"Carl! Over here."

"Mom, that's my friend. Can I go over?"

"Sure, baby. But please stay where I can see you."- Carl nodded and ran to his friend to start talking to someone adamantly about whatever with each other.

"Daryl, over here."

"Morgan, how are you?"

"I'm good. How about you? You get settled in finally?"

Morgan was one of the very few people that knew about Daryl's ex and the things he did, most of them anyway. It was good to have people talk to especially when he needed advice.

"Yeah, I've been settled in for a while actually."

"How's Carl been doing? School's about to start pretty soon. You ready?"

"As ready as I'll ever be. It's kinda hard to believe really. It seems just like yesterday, he was just a small baby nestled in my arms cryin' to be fed. Now he's starting middle school soon he'll be in high school."

"Yeah. It's hard but you'll get used to it once he starts to really drive you crazy."

"I've gotten used to him, it's Merle that he drives crazy. You should see him at home; he's so funny."

"It's great that the two of them are friends. I was afraid that after Duwane's mother died, he wouldn't want to make friends. But that day in the park…it was the first time I'd seen him smile at another person."

"Yeah, same for Carl. I thought he was so traumatized by what happened with me and HIM, I thought he wouldn't get close to anyone anymore."

"Well, it's all in the past now. For both of us."- Daryl gave his friend a half smile, but thought.. 'It doesn't look like my past is willing to let me forget it.'

"Mom, Morgan, look. There's the fire chief. It's about to start now."-Daryl could see a vintage truck pull into the fire station, he could also see another person in the truck but couldn't make out who they were, but could easily see him.

(Jump to scene in the car…)

"Again, Rick I can't tell you how much you're saving me here. I don't think I could get anyone else on short notice."

"Are you sure?"

"Positive, everyone else is already at the firehouse."

(Bark, Bark)

"What are you two yippin' about, huh? See a squirell?"

"Well we're here. Not that much of a turnout but better then what was expected (Hershal said while chuckling). What do you say we get this show on the road?"

"Yeah, you guys ready? Huh?"

As Hershal drove into the firehouse, Rick's eyes caught onto another pair of eyes, but these eyes were bright, crystal bright, like a pair of 'saphires?' I don't think it matters but man those eyes!'

All Rick could see was those eyes but he wanted to see more. He tried to move forward to see more of the man, but the figure turned away from him. He tried so hard to catch another glimpse of the person but couldn't as everyone started to move into the firehouse for the event.

"Alright, Rick. You ready?

"Yeah, Hershal. Let's get this over with."

Rick and Hershal exited with the dogs. Rick walks into the firehouse only to be greeted by Glenn and T-Dog.

"You guys were roped into this too."

"Naw, man. We volunteered, 'sides we like giving back to the community."

"I know the feeling. So is everything set up?"

"Yeah, just waiting on everyone to get here."

"Ummm. Glenn this is everyone."

"But's only like twenty people, twenty-five at the least."

"Well we gotta work with we have. There are still people who want to visit their firehouses Glenn, even if there are of little of them."

"You heard the man, Jackie-Chan. Let's get started."

"Dude, I am Korean."

"I know that but you still look like him."

Rick chuckles while these two banter, he looks and see his two dogs on the sides of him.

"Alright boys. Let's start this. Excuse me, everyone. Everyone if I may have your attention please. We'd like to get this thing started."

People piled around Rick and the rest of the group.

"Hi, everyone. I'm Rick Grimes. This is Glenn and T-Dog. You all know Hershal."- Everyone chuckled just a bit.

"Yes, you all know as the old man with 1 ½ legs."- People laughed at the joke Hershal made about himself.

"Alright, everyone. To start off, we are your local firehouse company 35 and we are proud to serve this community and be a part of it."-Everyone clapped and Daryl smiled actually.

"I like this guy. He knows how to talk to people."-Carl said with a smile on his face

"He's a people person it seems."-Daryl said with a small smile

"And while we love serving this community, we still would like to take the opportunity to teach everyone what to do in case of an emergency and we can't respond as fast."

"I would like a volunteer from the audience if I can."- Hershal finished saying while Rick looked all around trying to find a kid that would be a good helper. One person in particular caught his eye, he was a cute kid; brown shaggy hair, bright eyes and a big smile.

'I wonder who his parents are?'

"You, young man. What's your name?"-Hershal said with a smile

Me? My name? It's Carl. Carl Dixon.

"Well, Carl. You think you can help us out today?"

"Mom, can I?"

"Sure. Fine by me?"- Carl ran toward Rick and stood by him. Hershal took the time to talk to Carl while Hershal did that, Rick looked to where Carl was standing to see his 'mother'.

Rick couldn't stop himself from staring at this person. The person the boy called mom, was actually a man, and a beautiful one at that. Rick wasn't surprised at himself he always had this side to him, he just never indulged in those feelings, those desires. He drank in this Adonis from head to toe: medium length brown hair, it fell in waves around his face.

'It looks so soft. I want to touch it, run my fingers through it. Maybe even pull it, hard.' –Rick said to himself

Rick continued to rake his eyes over this delicious specimen. Bright crystal eyes that looked like gems, angled nose that suited him, high cheekbones that were slim, full pink lips surrounded by slight facial hair with only a small thick bush at his chin. Underneath that, a slim blemish free neck that looked so tasty and soft to the imaginary touch. He continued down further to an almost non-noticeable adams apple, a board but slight pair of shoulders. He could see the muscles that peaked out in the tight all white shirt that he had on along with a v-neck sweater vest he had on along with a pair of very tight jeans that left little to nothing to the imagination.

"I wonder what those legs feel like. Go a little further, what would they look like around me; my neck or my waist."- Rick could hear Hershal and Glenn talking to the audience but he didn't care, all he wanted was the blue eyed (potential) minx he saw

"Rick, anything else you'd like to say to the people before we send them on their merry way?"- Hershal replied

"Huh? You say something' Hershal?"

"It seems my firefighter has gone hazy (chuckling). Rick I asked was there anything you would like to add before we disperse?"

Rick hated that he had to take his eyes off the angel in front of him.

"Oh, yeah. Don't forget everyone we are having a fair next month, to help raise money for new equipment and bring together the community."

"Alright everyone. That's all thank you for coming. And for you Carl for helping, we would like to give you this special firefighter's helmet signed by all of us here."

"Oh, cool. Mom look!"- Daryl just smiled at his boy.

"We thank you all for coming and don't forget to come see us at the fair."

People began to disperse including the blue eyed beauty Rick wanted to get to know just a little before he left.

"I see that your attention has been occupied elsewhere Rick."-Hershal said with a grin

Rick just smiled at Hershal, but he didn't take his eyes off the man he was drooling over.

"So beautiful."

What's you say, Rick?"

"Huh, nothing Hershal. It's nothing."

"If you want to go talk to him, Rick you shouldn't be afraid."

"Who said I was afraid? I am not afraid, I just don't think it's proper. Yeah, proper."

"Rick if everything was meant to be proper, nothing exciting would happen."

Rick sat there and thought about what happened with Lori, he wasn't sure he should take that big of a chance, plus he had a dilemma, what if the kid became attached to him? What if he left because things didn't work out for them? There was so much that could go wrong and yet the little things that could go right were starting to outweigh them.

Suddenly rick noticed movement- 'Where is everyone going? Wait a minute, they aren't moving I am! Oh man, I'm actually doing this. God he is so beautiful. Come on, Rick you can do this. Just say hi and go from there'

Scene switch…

Carl was chatting animatedly with his best friend while Daryl watched him. He couldn't stop thinking about how he kept worrying about him when he was just a few feet away. He supposed it was just the mother in him; Merle, being the asshole he was, said he was just too scared to let the boy "grow a pair". When he heard Carl's name being called by the captain, he saw the man from earlier in the truck. He saw a handsome man that he wanted to get to know but shied away. He couldn't help but stare the whole time the presentation was going on.

"Carl, baby. It's time to go."

Carl looked a bit down at the fact, but ended up following with his mother's wishes. As Carl walked towards his mother, Daryl also saw the man that helped gave the presentation walking toward them. Daryl his heart beat so differently, he even shivered with antici…pation. He could actually smell the man from a distance and the smell was mouthwatering, to Daryl at least, the man was beyond handsome; dark curly hair, bright blue eyes, like the ocean, nice lips and the rest of package wasn't too bad either. But something was holding him back, and he knew he couldn't try to deal with a relationship…of any kind. He just couldn't risk it, not with HIM still out there. He was interrupted when Carl mentioned,

"Mom, look here comes the fireman."

Daryl looked up from Carl and looked straight ahead toward the man, the same man who started speaking with the voice of a god.

"Hello, there. Did you enjoy the presentation?"

"We did, thank you."- Daryl didn't want to look at the man for the fear of him not being able to speak words

Rick just could not stop looking at this man, this beautiful man who looked as though he could make even the most faithful and straightest man fall to his knees and beg to be with him. Daryl on the other hand looked as though he was ready to bolt to the nearest exit. Rick noticed this and decided to try and ease him into a longer conversation simply because he didn't want him to leave.

'What might his name be? That would be a good start.'

But before Rick could even ask the burning question, the angel was leaving with his son.

'Damn it! Where is he going? I can't let him leave without knowing his name.'

Before Rick could even get his footing together, the man was gone. Rick couldn't help but feel a bit disappointed with himself that he had not obtained any information about the man who he couldn't stop thinking about. Then he saw the man he was talking to from before and he recognized him. That is when Rick got the perfect idea.

Scene skip… (Carl and Daryl in the car)

Daryl watched his son as he played with his fireman helmet, he hadn't seen Carl smile like that since he got his last big present. (But it was from him as a way of saying he was 'sorry').

"You're really enjoying that thing huh? You wanna be a fireman when you grow up?"

"Naw, too dangerous. I wanna be a comic book artist."

"Hehe, sounds reasonable. Whatcha gonna draw?"

"I don't know maybe animation, cartoons and stuff. You know?"

"Yeah, I get it. Do you think you will be happy doing that for the rest of your life?"

"I don't know, maybe. Never know until I try right?"

"Yeah, short stack you're right."- Daryl reached over and ruffled his son's hair, effectively messing it up

"So, you still wanna go to the park or was that just too much excitement for one day?"

"I still wanna go pretty please?

"Hmm, I don't know. I think that was too much for you today. I think we should call it a day and head home to get something to eat. And maybe a good long nap."

"Mom, I am not a baby. I do not need a nap, I want to go to the park please, please."- Carl looked at his mother with the eyes of a kicked puppy.

Daryl just laughed and said – "Okay, okay. We can go to the park. Don't want you blackmailing me with those eyes of yours."

Carl had a triumphant look on his face as they drove to his favorite park. He liked this, spending time with his mom, especially since they were out of the house and they moved in with his uncle. He like Merle but he was a pain because he didn't know when to leave his mom alone about his love life and about the way he treated Carl. He was embarrassed to admit it but he liked it when his mom fussed over him because it showed that he was cared and loved for. What was wrong with the way his mom treated him and cared for him? To him there was nothing wrong with it, it was just love. His uncle said he was too young to understand what the real problem was but he didn't care, he was happy with the way things went between his mom and him and he wouldn't change that for anything.

"Hey baby we're here. Let's go and toss the pigskin around. What do you say?"

"Can we do baseball instead, I was thinking about trying out for the team this year? I thought it might be good for me, especially when you have to work late and then there is Merle and his "friends"."

"Yeah, I know. I've told that idiot about his whores. Don't worry I'll have a good long talk with him. He knows he has to tone it down when you're in the house. Sometimes I swear I don't get that uncle of yours and half the time I swear I am adopted."

Carl just laughed, his mom always said that when his uncle got on his nerves. As they exited the car, Carl when and got his bat, ball and glove from the back, with a giant smile on his face. These were the days that he craved for when it was just him and his mom spending time with each other, no worries and no cares for a few hours before having to go back to the real world.

"Alright tiger let's go and see what we can do about hitting a few, huh?"

"Yeah, I want to see how you pitch old man."

"Old man huh? Alright I'm gonna make you eat those words short stack."

"You're on grandpa."

Carl laughed as he ran off into the opposite direction while Daryl sort of lagged behind and thought about how things got the way they did.

Flashback when carl was a toddler….(let's say 3)

It was just one of those days where nothing went right, where everything that could go wrong went wrong. Carl was very whiney and fussy that day and just did not want to be left alone, which didn't leave Darryl with much time to do anything else. Carl would take cat naps so he had to rush and do as much as he could. But now Carl was finally asleep and Darryl had yet to get dinner started and Phillip would be home within another hour, so he had to hurry and get dinner started.

Things had not been on good terms between the two of them. Lately it had been nothing but fights and arguments. The last one ended with Phillip hitting him, hard. After hitting him, Phillip left and Darryl didn't see him at all for which he was thankful for. After giving their son a bath and a bedtime story, the next day, Phillip showed up at his work with two dozen white roses, a giant white and black teddy bear and a dinner invitation. The other teachers and staff were so surprised and some were even jealous because of the love and appreciation that Phillip showed his husband. Even some of Darryl's student were overjoyed with this show of love. But Darryl wasn't anywhere near convinced. When Phillip showed up Darryl did his best to avoid him; it's not as though he did not know he was there but rather he did not want to talk or have anything to do with him. Things were just not going his way and he was worried about Carl and how it would affect him. He didn't want Carl to get the wrong idea about how to treat the person you were with, the person you care about.

He didn't go home for three days, he thought after the second day Phillip would come looking for him but he had not seen height nor hair of him and for that he is thankful. He hated the fact that Phillip acted as though nothing happened between the two of them, like the incident didn't matter to him. The final bell rang and school was over, Darryl began to pack his things and leave but not before going to the school nursery to pick up his son. When he arrived he laid eyes on his husband and their son and he was cooing and lavishing love upon him. There was a feeling of love within Darryl's chest but there was also a feeling of uncertainty that Darryl felt. What would he do if it happened again? Would Phillip turn that anger towards the baby? What if…

He was snapped out of his thinking by the door opening and the sound of Phillip's boots hitting the floor. He didn't say anything just went straight into the dining room to pour himself a glass of whatever he was in the mood for. Darryl watched him as he went inside the room and sat down. Darryl, on quiet footsteps followed him; while he wanted to say something he found himself having a hard time breathing for some reason. It was just nerves or a warning, Darryl had never not trusted his instincts they had gotten him out of some situations that could had gotten pretty bad, and now his instincts were telling him to run in the other direction but he had to steel his nerves in order to talk to his husband.

"How (clears throat) how was your day?"

Phillip continued to ignore him in favor of his drink. He was pissed about the days events and the sour way they ended. There were so many things that were not going right that day and he was not in the mood to deal with his family. Now don't get it wrong he cared about his family but there were times where he would not come home and spend it at a local whorehouse where he would release some stress.

"Sweetheart, we need to talk."- Darryl tried again to get his husband's attention but he was not successful. Instead his husband just ignored him in favor of his drink. Darryl became very incensed when his husband was ignoring him

"Please talk to me! I need to talk with you, I feel like we are slipping from each other. Please tell me how we can resolve this. What can we do to help each other get through this? I don't think I can hold on much longer. You have been acting so distant from me and carl, god carl needs you. He sometimes doesn't even remember who you are half the time because you are gone so much from home. Please something has got to give. We can't keep doing this anymore."

Darryl begged his husband to finally listen to him in some way or at least acknowledge him and his son. Phillip just stared at the wall, but slowly and surely he began to rise from his seat on the chair. He stood next to his fireplace and mantle, stood there contemplating.

"Damnnit, Why won't you talk to me?!"

"Did it ever occur to you that I don't want to talk or hear your voice? Has it ever crossed your mind that there are things that do not concern you?"

"I knew you wouldn't change. I knew that you would go back on your word. Let's just cut to the chase, we can't do this anymore; I can't do this anymore. I tried to do this but you make it so hard for me. For us. I wanted this to work between us but I cant seem to get through to you. After today, I'm leaving you and staying with my brother. I just know I cant do this anymore."

Silence was all he was meet with.

"I guess you just don't give a damn anymore huh? I shoulda figured it."

SLAP and CRASH

Darryl landed into a small table nearby and landed on his back. Holding his face he discovers that he has a busted lip. He eyes gaze at his husband and he begins to try to get up and leave when he was grabbed by his hair. His husband who gazed at him with a look that conveyed pure madness.

"Why is it that every time that I want a little peace and quiet, I make the mistake of coming home to you and that damn kid?!"

Thrown into the wall, Daryl can feel his body protesting as he tries to jerk away to get away from his husband and his anger.

"So, I guess 'is means 'at ya' aint gonna be nice no more are ya?"- His southern drawl coming to him in an instant because of his anger towards Phillip and all his broken promises.

"Well since we are being honest, sweetheart, no I was never nice to you."

"Yea' ya got that damn right. – he wipes the blood still free-flowing from his lip.- "I don't wanna do this anymore. I can't. I didn't care what you did to me, I could take it. But we have Carl to think about now and I don't trust you not to hurt him when you go on one o' ya lil' tirades."

Walking over to the desk that Phil used for whatever, he used it for half the time, he opened one of the drawers and pulled out a small stack of papers, each with his signature on it.

"What the hell are those?"

"What the hell they look like to ya?"

Phillip shrugged his shoulders, obviously not in the mood for any games. So Daryl showed him.

"Man, for someone who claims to see the future of this here town, you are one blind summabtich. These are divorce papers, I'm leaving your sorry ass and Im taking my son with me. He don't need ya and I sure as hell can get by without ya. I don't care what the people in this town think of you, ye'r a terrible father, a horrible husband; ye'r just a terrible person to be around and I don't want that fer my kid. If ya don't sign them, the judge will automatically give me a divorce without yer signature. Yeah that's right I managed to find a judge that wasn't on yer payroll. It doesn't matter, with or without a signature, Carl and I are leaving anyway. Ball's in yer' court, make yer' play; Gov'ner."

Daryl threw the papers to his soon to be ex-husbands feet. Where he just looked at them, with a look of extreme confusion upon his face. Who the hell did this redneck hick think he was?! Didn't he know he owed Phillip his whole damn life? This house, that job, that damn spawn of his?! Everything he had he owed to him and his connections. He was lucky for Phillip finding his sorry country ass and dating him, while everyone else just thought of him as a good fuck, he actually saw some sort of potential in him, maybe not much but still something to show some worth. And that shit head brother of his, well that was a lost cause no matter who's wing he was under. Everything was going accordingly, he had a nice little piece of ass to come home to, plenty of people eating out of his hand and more than enough money to keep himself occupied with from all his deals on the side. Sure, he had to placate the country hick to keep him from asking questions, such as getting married and putting a kid in him. Those were small sacrifices to make, if he wanted the family image to secure his plans into place. He knew the redneck was starved for attention and love, seeing from his brother that there was no way he got it in the house growing up. Everything had just fallen into place this past year, did he really think that he was gonna go that easily?

As Phillip bent down to grab up the papers, he kept his eyes solely trained on daryl, who didn't move one inch when it came to Phillip. Daryl learned from his brother and daddy when he younger to never turn his back on his enemies, lest they take the opportunity to slice ya damn throat open. Grabbing the small stack of papers, The Governor gave sickly sweet smile.

"Sweetheart, why don't we stop all this fightin' and fussin', huh? We both know you love me too much to go anywhere and talking about taking the boy with you as well? Tell me, where are you gonna go that I won't be able to find you?"

"I'm not worried about ya' findin' us. Even of you do, s'nothin' you can do. We'll be legally divorced and I'm gonna have custody of Carl. There's nothin' I wan' from you, and there's nothing I have that you want. So we can go our separate ways and never have to see each other again."

(Chuckling) "Really? You really think it's gonna be that easy? And in what distant future do you think that will work? You think after everything, I've went through to get to this point, I'm gonna just let you go, because what, you got a couple of papers stating that you're leaving? You think these papers mean a damn thing?!"

Phillip throws the papers into the fireplace, as to accentuate his point that the papers meant nothing in his household. As far as he was concerned, Daryl was his and his alone, no piece of paper and no damn judge was gonna tell him otherwise. Speaking of which he had to find out which judge was stupid enough to go behind his back and grant this… this… whore! A reprieve from his marriage, from his duties as a housewife. Sure he let him have a job but that was only to keep occupied with something other than being married to him. And the damn kid had served his purpose more than once, it stopped the hick from being lonely and it gave him that extra boost with the townspeople.

"It doesn't matter what ya think, what's done is done. We're leaving tomorrow, and we are going far from here. And there nothing you can do to stop us. Oh and just so you don't think that those are the only copies of the papers, there will be some on your desk when you go in tomorrow. They'll keep popping up until you sign them."

Turning Daryl left to go upstairs to finish packing up his things. Not realizing that Phillip was intent on following him but not before placing a call to the front gate.

"Yeah, boss?"

"Make sure no one comes through the gate, not even the cops."

"Any particular reason?"

"Yeah, there's gonna be a lot of screaming."

As he hung up the phone, he locks the doors and stalks upstairs to put forth his counter offer for his husbands dissolving of their marriage.

While upstairs, Daryl had grabbed their son's crib and wheeled it into their bedroom so he can keep an eye on him while he was packing. Because of the way he'd been raised, which was the way of the woods, being silent and always be alert, he could tell when someone following him, if someone had been walking in the same direction as him a few hours prior, tracking, trapping, and hunting; these were his skills that got him out of some potentially bad situations. So there was mistaking his hearing when he heard his husband try to sneak up the stairs and he damn sure heard his husband shut and lock the door to their bedroom. The temperature dropped significantly within the room, and Carl started to whine loudly. Stopping the packing, going over to his son to calm him down; although the master bedroom was spacious, it seemed to get smaller as his husband was in the room with him and their child. He could feel Phillips eyes watching him with every step he took, but he always kept his senses alert whenever he was around his husband.

Picking Carl up, Daryl sat on the bed and bounced his little boy gently, so he would quiet down for him to finish packing up their things.

"Hey lil buddy. You want a little attention huh? (kiss) (kiss) Huh? Ya spoiled little thing? You know when we get settled, yer' uncle Merle is gonna want to see his newphew. Prob'ly teach ya some bad stuff, like sum curse words or how to make moonshine. But we can't have ya doing that till your 18 bud."

The baby gurgled and squealed to his mama as he lifted him up and blew raspberries on his little tummy again and again.

"Yeah that's right buddy. You're jus' a happy babe ain't ya?"

"Da, da."

Daryl's smile faltered as the boy pointed at his father. Phillip came to sit on the bed just behind Daryl and rest his arm behind Daryl and his other to play with the boy.

"He's a handsome boy just like his daddy, and he's smart just like his beautiful papa. Papa pretty? Yes he is, very pretty."

"Pa, pa!"

"Yes baby boy pa pretty."

Daryl couldn't help the unsettling feeling that coiled in his stomach, so he made a move to put Carl back in his crib to finish up everything when felt himself being pulled back down, and lips crushed to his own. As he tried to pull away, a hand came to grab his hair and force him to stay there. He tried not to jostle too much for little carl was in his arms and moving too fast could upset the little bugger. He did the only thing he could do and that was keep his mouth shut tightly and wait until the kiss ended. What felt like an eternity, the kiss ended. He quickly shot up and put little carl back in his crib, the little man was getting sleepy fast so it wouldn't take long for him to close his eyes.

Trying to move back to go pack his things, Daryl was rushed and pushed against the opposite wall and held tightly. His face pushed into the wall, his arm twisted behind his back with such force but steadily being further brought back behind his back, slowly and painfully. His breathing ragged and shortened here and there by his husbands hand encircling his throat and squeezing just enough to cause him to choke on his air.

(Gasp) Phil..lip. Phillip, stop."

The only response he got was the harsh breath of his husband moving close to his ear moved along to the crook of his neck. When he thought it couldn't move into worse territory, he felt the body of his husband grind hard against him almost as if he wanted melt their bodies together. His husbands hand traveled down to his pants to fiddle with the zipper.

"No! N…."

A hand clamped down on his mouth while the other put more pressure on his already aching arm; Daryl swore that if he wrenched the wrong way, his arm would surely break in two.

"Now, now sweetheart. (kiss) You have to be quiet, we don't want our boy waking up now do we?" (kiss) (kiss)

"Phil, please. Please don't do this. I'll stay, I'll…I'll do whatever you want just please don't do this."

Licking his ear, The Governor smiled wickedly. He fondled Daryl all over; then taking it a step further he snuck his hands into Daryl's pants and undershirt. Touching and feeling, pinching and groping, and even biting; painful nips here and there. Daryl couldn't help his cries of pain or the tears streaming down his face. Some at the thought of what he knew his husband was planning to do and the other part due to the pain his husband was inflecting upon him. With renewed strength in his voice and body he tried to push his husband off him and get away.

"Please, Phil. I'm beggin' you, don't do this please. Let me go. Let me and carl go, I'll leave quietly. I won't make a fuss about nuthin', jus' please let us go."

Sighing deeply, Phillip removed his hand from Daryl's arm and turned his husband around to face him and wrapped his arms around him, seeing the mix of fear and uncertainty within his husband's eyes.

"Plea…"

Holding tightly to his husband, he turned him around, slowly walking him to the bed. Daryl began to shake and slightly twist away, his clothes undone from both ends, disheveled.

(kiss) How long? How long has it been since we've been together? Since we've christened our marriage bed? Since I've been inside you? You know what might be a good idea for us? We should go to bed and we should take this time to reconsider each other propositions. What do you say, lover? Huh?" (kiss) (kiss)

Realizing what was going to happen, Daryl's eye widened and he began to struggle weakly just a moment until he felt the adrenaline coursing through him. Breaking away only slightly enough to face his husband but not to actually get away, unfortunately. Phillip still had his arm in his grip; having enough of his husband and his scuffling and fighting, The Governor head butted Daryl twice and threw him to the king size bed. Daryl, woozy, light-headed, and bleeding badly, tried his hardest to move away from his husband across the bed. He reached his arm out to swat him away, but his wrist was caught and twisted. His pants ripped from him down to his knees, his arm twisted behind his back at an almost unnatural angle.

"Ahhh! No, please! Stop, please don't do this!"

Because of the yelling, baby carl was awoken and began to scream.

"You know I've had enough of you! I think I am just gonna skip the niceness and teach you the lesson that you obviously haven't learned yet."

"First, I am gonna immobilize you, which means this sexy arm of yours is not gonna be of much use to you for a while."

Taking Daryl's arm, he bent it just at the right angle, applied pressure to it and broke it, with a snap. Daryl buried his face in the pillow and screamed as loud as he could. Tears of pain and agony fell down his face as he cradled his arm to his body. Phillip ripped the rest of his clothes off and pinned him to the bed by his throat. Baby carl screamed profusely in the background.

"Next, I'm gonna take what's mine. Over and over again. I'm gonna make sure you know who you belong to. You and that damn kid of yours, ya'll both gonna learn that I am not the man to fuck with!"

Striking Daryl across the face twice, he re-split Daryl's lip and bruised his eye and cheek. Phillips forearm placed down on his throat stopping him from yelling out and calling for help.

"Ple..a. ! (choking) le…let.. me.. ."

Spreading his legs, and positioning himself between them, Daryl lying still only slightly thrashing because of the pain in his arm, tried to move away and get him and his son out of there.

"I wouldn't move so much baby. It's gonna hurt you more than me. And I am gonna enjoy this to the fullest."

Daryl's eyes blew to huge proportions as his husband prepared to enter him with that sickening smirk on his face. Daryl shook his head, tears falling down his face along with the blood oozing out of his face, with his shoulder throbbing and aching so much Daryl just couldn't see straight. He turned his head to the side, sobbed as his husband grinded, kissed and bite him. With little Carl's shrill crying, turned to low sobbing; all the while Daryl could just turn his head and pray for someone, anyone to save him and his son.

(End of Flashback)

"Mom, mom! Are you there?!"

"Sorry, what was that?"

"I asked could I go over by the swings and play. Is it okay?"

"Oh, y..yea baby. Its okay. Just stay where I can see you."- Daryl said as he took Carl's ball and went to sit in the shade where the benches were for the parents to sit and watch their children.

Carl watched his mom, walk over to the bench. He thought he saw a tear out of his mom's eye and went to go follow him. He may have been young but he remembers things from when he was younger. He does remember the bad things that happened to his mom at times. It does hurt whenever he sees his mom cry; sometimes he can hear him cry at night from nightmares. Nightmares his "sperm-donor" gave his mother; that's what his uncle merle called him. He said he was no better than a 'mixed mutt with a wet dick'. Carl may have been young but he knew what was right and what was wrong and what his father did was wrong in every single way.

"Mom, were you thinking about him again? I know about the nightmares and the crying. I..I have nightmares about him too. I know you think I'm too young to remember anything, but what I do remember isn't good."

Daryl hated when his son could read him so easy; he especially hated when it came to dealing with the crap from his former marriage. Looking at his son, Daryl thought of something. Is that why he asked me if I was lonely? He wants me to forget everything and start over, I guess?

"Baby, come 'ere. Is that what breakfast was about this morning? 'Cause you know I'm not doing so hot? (Deep sigh) I know things have been hard on you, with everything these past few years and ya' been such a trooper through all of it. 'm so proud o' you. I hope you know that, buddy. Hey what do you say, this weekend, me, you and yer' uncle merle go huntin' and campin'? It's something we haven't been able to do fer' a while."-Daryl couldn't help but try to smile to get his son to think about something else

"Yes! Yes!"- Carl's face lit up with such excitement he almost didn't notice the firefighter from the fire house staring at his mom across the field.

"Wha's got you smiling like a villain? See a girl you like?"

"Nope, but I see somebody that likes you."

Daryl hadn't the faintest idea who Carl could be talking about. Not until he saw what Carl was looking at, or rather who. He wasn't exactly sure what the reason was but there something about this man that made him want to pour his heart out. He didn't like that feeling, it ended up landing him in the position he was in a few years back.

"Huh, will you look at that. Looks like he brought his dogs with him."

Suddenly, Carl had an idea. He knew from the way the man looked at his mom that he liked him, but his mom was so stubborn that he probably would just give the guy the usual 'thanks but no thanks' saying; so what's the harm in giving the two of them a little push?

"Hey. Let's go say hi. I'm sure that he will remember us because he was looking at you while they were doing the presentation."-Carl speeds over to him before his mom can grab him.

"Carl wait!"

Slight scene change…this is after they left

Rick walked up to Morgan and his son, he hadn't seen Morgan since he left the firehouse after his wife died.

"Hey Morgan!"

"Rick! Hey how's it going. Long time no see, huh?"

"Same to ya! How are things? You and Duane? I know things haven't been the same since…the accident."

"We've gotten by one day at a time. Things have gotten better, for both of us. Duane is more open and talking more, at least to Carl, he is."

"The young boy from the demonstration, right?"

"Yeah, the one here with his mom. You know the one, the young fella' you were staring at through half the demonstration. The one with the wispy yet shaggy brownish-blonde hair, the toned arms and strong chin."

Rick's face turned beet red, one would think that he was sunburned.

"You saw, huh?"

"I'm pretty sure the entire neighborhood saw you, but decided not to say anything. You like him huh?"

"I know what you're thinking, I don't know him so how could I possibly like him? Yeah I know it sounds crazy, but there's something about him. Just from talking to him for those few seconds, I mean. I felt something there, I'd like the chance to get to know him better. The way he reacted, though it seems like he was, maybe…

"Afraid? "

"Yeah. You sound like you know something, Morgan. Care to share?"

"Sorry, Rick not my story to share. If you are really serious about getting to know him, you have to be ready to work for it. Daryl's been through a lot, carl too. They really need to be able to heal and move forward, I think you would be a good asset to them, but for right now I think they would be better off with just friends."

"I hear what you're saying, I am ready to move on from Lori. I'm not looking for a good time or a quick fix. I want something real, and I feel like I could have that with him. Daryl, huh?"

"I think I'm gonna regret saying this, but Daryl likes to take Carl to the dog park down by the creek. It's a beautiful day, so more than likely they will be heading there today. Just please make sure that you take it easy with them, they are both pretty guarded, you can get carl to open up cause you are one of his favorite types of people, your job I mean. Plus you have those mutts of yours."

Rick's smile couldn't get any bigger, as he hugged Morgan. He ran to ask Hershel could borrow he borrow the truck for a bit he promised that he would bring it back before the shop closed.

"It's fine, Rick. I really need to get the old gal fixed before winter hits."

Rick hopped into the truck with the dogs in the front seat. As he started the truck, he heard Hershel yell at him.

"And Rick, put those dogs in the back!"-Hershel said shaking his cane in the air as Rick sped away to the park.

He hoped he could get there in time enough just to speak a few words to Daryl and Carl. Daryl, his name rolled off Rick's tongue with a smoothness that Rick didn't know he had. And that little boy of his, what a little angel. He seemed like a bright kid, very respectful, and polite. He wanted to get to know both of them and soon; if only for just a few months. He would listen to Morgan's advice and take it as slow as Daryl wanted, if he would give him a chance for the two of them to connect. The dogs looking at Rick seemed to be smiling; he couldn't help but rub at their fur. He was pulling into the drive way for the park, and before he got out of the truck he spotted them just a little off from the side. Sitting there, he could see the two of them being so close and discussing something that seemed important. He waited for a bit before getting out of the truck with the dogs.

"Alright boys, here's the plan. You see that beautiful man over there and that little boy? I want to go over there and strike up a conversation with them and you're gonna help me. Okay?"

Before Rick could put his plan into action he saw the little boy come running towards him.

'Looks like I don't have to do anything. The fates are being good to me.'

Current Scene

"Carl, wait!"

Daryl couldn't understand just what was going on in his son's head as he rushed towards the handsome stranger. Sure Daryl wasn't stupid, the man was practically a supermodel; in a gruff way. Chocolate brown hair that way combed but still a bit wild, like he would constantly run his fingers through it; a trimmed 5 o' clock shadow that was there but not so scruffy-looking; and boy was he fit. He couldn't really focus on how good looking the man- Rick? was, he knew what he wanted. He saw the looks that he was giving him at the firehouse. He wanted to try and make new friends, maybe even date a couple of times but there was that fear within him from his marriage. He just couldn't shake it, and with a man like Rick he didn't think it was a good idea to venture out just yet.

"Mom, look at them! Can we get a dog, please? I'll take good care of it, please!"

"Carl, you know yer' uncle merle don't much like dogs. We would probably have to give him away after a couple o' days. It would be better if we wait on getting' our own place."

Carl's face fell a bit but he knew he was right. He'd seen the way his uncle treated the neighbors' dogs, he really didn't want to put a puppy through that. Not if he could help it.

"I'm sorry about 'im, he's wanted a dog ever since he was a tike. Can't really get him to want anything else. He's a simple kid."

They watched as Carl ran with the dogs, laughing and squealing. He was just having some of the best fun of his life and he deserved it. Carl was a good kid, he didn't need the stress of Darryl's marriage on him. He was just a kid, he needed a childhood. Daryl could feel the gaze of the firefighter on him and his skin felt hot.

"I never got yer name, fireman."

"It's Rick; Rick Grimes."

" 'm Daryl, Dixon."

"You related to merle Dixon?"

"You know ma' brother?"

"Yeah, we've gotten calls to a couple bars involving your brother and his friends doing some damage to the establishments. Some of them weren't so bad, but the others, I always wondered just how merle was able to keep coming back to these places without getting his head caved in."

"Yeah, merle and his so called friends are total idiots. I try not to have me and carl around them when they come and get merle. I'm actually starting to look around and get a place for me and carl to live in, so merle can have his space back."

"How long have you been staying with yer brother?"

"About 5 years now. Not too long, but long enough when you've got a kid. Carl's about to start school in a couple of weeks and I start teaching classes soon after."

"You're a teacher?"

"Yeah. I teach 5th grade. It's not that hard once you know what you're doing."

Daryl couldn't explain it but he felt like he wanted to tell this man everything, like he'd known him for years. But he was still guarded towards everyone. It wasn't Rick's fault, things just still hadn't settled down for him yet, he was still jumping at the slightest sound and hyperventilating at the nearest shadow. Daryl knew that Rick wasn't responsible for what happened to him, and he should at least give me a chance to get to know him, but now wasn't the time. Maybe later down the road when things were really settled for him and carl.

"I'd like to stay and chat more but Carl and I have to go. Thank you fer' being so nice us. Carl especially, he's a good kid."

"Yeah, he sure seems like it. He's a sweet kid; I love the way he is with the dogs."

Carl runs over to his mom and the fireman with the dogs hot on his heels. He likes playing with the dogs and wish he could stay longer to play with them. Maybe when he gets home, he could try to convince his uncle to let him get a puppy.

"Hey, let me look at you. You seem like you're out of breath, how about you calm down fer' a bit?"

The dogs nosed carl as his mother held him close to him.

"Alright you two, come over here. Let the boy breathe."

The dogs sat at Rick's heels, at attention like they were taught.

"You Carl, the boys seem to like you. And I am looking fer' someone to walk them every day while I'm at work; maybe even dog sit once in a while. You seem like a responsible, trustworthy, young man. As long as yer ma' says its okay?"

"Pleas, mom! Please! I promise I won't slack up on this, I promise."

"I don't know honey. Give me some time to think about this okay. I promise I will."

Carl's face looked heartbroken, but Rick patted him on the shoulder and winked at him. His face lit back up, thinking about how he might be able to actually play with dogs and not have to worry about his uncle merle getting mad at him.

"Now, if you don't mind Daryl, if I may call you that; would you do me the honor of getting coffee sometime?"

He could see Daryl's face and saw the uncertainty in them; he could tell Daryl wanted to bolt out of there before giving an answer. He didn't want to put pressure on him but he just wanted to get to know him and connect with him and carl. Daryl knew he couldn't just reject him out right but things were still just too shaky. He couldn't explain it, but something nagged at him in the back of his mind; he wanted to ignore it but, he just…couldn't.

"Thank you for the offer Mr. Grimes, but maybe at another time. Right now, I have other things on my mind. Please don't take any offense."

"Oh, no. Of course, not at all."

Daryl sent him a smile as he walked away with carl attached to him; he was getting sleepy so it might be a struggle to get him back to the car. He thought Rick would take the not so obvious hint that he was slightly interested but just couldn't keep going. Like he was drowning, and Rick was the lifeline being tossed to him that he just couldn't grab onto because pulling him into the shore, would bring the sharks with him.

"Wait, Daryl."

Daryl turned to look back at rick, confused at what else he could possibly say to him.

"If not fer' coffee, then how's about the fair coming up?"

"Mr. Grimes, you really don't give up do you?"- Daryl couldn't help with the smile that split his face wide open.

"I guess you can say that I'm bull-headed in that way. I may not always get what I want, but what I go after, I don't stop till I have it."

Rick looked at Daryl with such fire in his eyes that Daryl could hear himself swallow hard.

"You don't have to answer yet, but I can't say that I won't bug you until you give me an answer."

"I'll…I'll think about it, Mr. Grimes."

"That's all I ask, Daryl. And call me Rick."

Daryl gave a nod to him before taking carl to the car and getting him strapped in for the ride home. As he started the car, he turned and saw Rick and the dogs standing there, waving at him. He gave a short wave back and began the drive home.

Rick stood there, with the biggest smile plastered onto his face. He'd taken the first step and put the ball into Daryl's court, now all he had to do was wait; which was gonna be hard to do since he felt as though he was so close to be able to actually spend time with Daryl and carl. He walked away to the truck with the dogs in tow; just thinking of when he could receive Daryl's answer. Would he call him or would Rick have to call Daryl?

'Wait how am I gonna even call him. I don't have a number and I didn't give him mine. Dammnit.'

Suddenly Rick got an idea, the one person who knows more than anything in Atlanta about Daryl; Morgan! He helped him get this far, why not just a little extra push? He would go and visit Morgan, maybe even bring a present or two for Duane, to help soften Morgan up. He couldn't wait to go out and treat Daryl to a good time, he just hoped that whatever was holding him back would go away after spending time with Rick. Showing him that he didn't need to be afraid, that whatever happened to him in the past didn't need to affect any possibilities with him and Rick. He just hoped that he would be to convince Daryl and carl that they could actually be happy; really, truly, happy.