Epilogue

"Look what you did...Carl didn't owe you nothing..."

Negan said clutching his bleeding throat, staring up at Rick, eyes watering with tears as Lucy laid dead in the leafs and grass just a few feet away. Devastated, Negan collapsed with a thud and that was the end.

At the Hilltop...

2 months later.

It was a beautiful sunny day when the truck arrived at the gate. A man drove it, filthy, scared, and half insane. When they let him roll in, they made him surrender his two shotguns, and searched the truck from top to bottom. Here they found a baby, over a year, laying in a basket, filthy with thick black hair, hazel eyes, and freckles. Instantly Maggie eyed Rick as she scooped the baby up who continued screaming. The man babbled that less than a year ago he came upon a couple traveling. His girlfriend wanted a baby real bad dispute everything going on, so they killed the couple and took the baby. Their small camp was attacked by walkers, everyone was killed but him, his girlfriend Vicky, and the baby. They traveled for a while, until Vicky got sick. She turned and nearly killed him. Since then he had been wandering, and even confessed about leaving the baby behind more than once.

He barley had enough food for it, and knew it was getting sick. He hadn't slept in days, and found this place the night before. Here he collapsed on his knees begging mercy. He knew he had killed people, hadn't everyone? He did this to please his girlfriend who was everything to him. He honestly didn't know what else to do. Disgusted, Maggie ordered Daryl to bring him to the trucks where he would be transported to Alexandra where the cells which currently held Gregory, and now Negan were. The man half crazed began crying, thanking them before he was hauled away. Instantly Maggie glared at Rick. Things hadn't been the same since that day in the field.

Maggie was finally starting to show, and many changes had happened since that day Rick made the choice to save Negan. Everyone was working together, crops had been planted, food hunted, and for once peace. They were making a government, and trying to pick up the pieces from what happened. Mikey had recovered, and lived at the Hilltop. Rick and him had grown close since he reminded him very much of his own son. Mikey was getting taller and taller, and really pitching in, not only being a great shot, but showing that he actually was really great at helping with the crews building. Currently he was helping on making a windmill with several different men. Only once did he ask to see Negan. Rick allowed it, and Mikey two weeks after Lucy's death shuffled in, where Negan sat on the cement floor in the dim light. His beard was coming in, and the bandage wrapped tightly around his throat. They were currently in the middle of rebuilding Alexandra, but they knew that very much might take months, even years after the damage. The burned frames of the houses and buildings were being torn down, and they were transporting using trucks for the lumber. As of right now out of the eleven houses and four buildings that were burned down, three were all ready framed up. The gates and walls were back, and Rick was back with Michonne, along with Judith, Gabriel, and several others. They usually traveled back and forth.

That day, Mikey asked to see Negan, Rick thought it over and decided he deserved to see him, even if it was just for a few minutes. The cell had been split into three. The original wall was taken down, replaced with bars, and now three sat. Two side to side, one across the way. When he brought him in, Mikey stared before Negan glanced up, looking over at him. Gregory ran to the bars trying to get Rick's attention from the other cell but Rick ignored him. Since that day in the field, Negan hadn't said a word. Food was delivered three times a day, and the trays were always taken. Besides that Negan just sat. He slept and sat, and ignored everyone. The doc was brought in twice since that day to check his throat, change the bandages, and keep the stitches clean. Even then, Negan didn't say a word as Rick watched closely. This day, Mikey walked in and stared.

"Do you know who I am?"

Negan didn't say a word, instead his hazel eyes glared. Mikey, who was still so pale from recovering, swallowed hard and looked down at him through the bars, sitting on the cold cement floor. Mikey took a step closer while Rick and Gregory watched. His eyes were calm, showing no fear.

"I'm the guy who came back with Lucy...I was originally from Alexandra before you took over. I met up with her after she ran away from you. We made it all the way down to Florida together and were happy...but she made the choice to come back and help these people...and to stop you. She told me everything...about how you killed everyone in the group she had been in. How you kidnapped her, raped her...cuffed her to a mattress...took her virginty until she became pregnant. She told me about how she tried to kill herself to get away from you...about the babies, having to destroy one, and the couple who took the baby. She told me about not remembering and coming back to you, about the lies and the rapes. She told me about tricking you into trying to kill her, and the baby that died inside of her the day she died. She told me everything...and Rick filled me in on the rest. She told me what a monster you had been and how it finally took a third try...in death again to be rid of you."

Negan glared up at him as Mikey went on.

"I didn't know Lucy long...but the only good thing about her dying is that she finally got her wish. She's finally rid of you. Just remember one thing...when we made love, it wasn't a dirty filthy forced thing. It was something I'll never forget for the rest of my life. If she hadn't of died...I was willing to raise that baby as if it was my own. I may just be a kid...but I would have been ten times the father you ever could be. So that's it. I just needed to see who this monster was...and I gotta admit. I'm not impressed."

Mikey's face crumpled up before he spit in Negan's direction. Just like that, he turned and walked away. Rick glanced in Negan's direction one last time before following him. Today Mikey was in a short sleeve T-shirt, holding a hammer, laughing with the guys near the frame of the windmill. Rick glanced in his direction and smirked, happy to see him happy. In fact, Judith had taking quite the liking to him and constantly ran around his feet whenever he was out here crying to get scooped up by him. Knowing he outta go with Daryl to drop this guy off, he stared at Maggie. Things hadn't been the same since that day in the field.

Often Rick went out to that tree where Lucy was buried and sat thinking of his son, and everyone they had lost. Sighing, he walked over as the baby started to settled down, nuzzled against Maggie. He really was beautiful beneath all the dirt. Sighing, Rick touched his tiny back, his clothing torn and soiled.

"Taking him to the doc?"

"Yeah..."

Rick nodded knowing they didn't have anything else to say. Turning, he headed towards the trucks.

Later...

The prisoner sat in his cell weeping. Gregory had tried talking to him, and was just starting to get through to him. Negan meanwhile sat against the wall on the floor silently watching. Gregory sighed and clutched the bars of his cell looking across to this new guy. Rick and Daryl had left them, and now it was just the three of them, locked in separate cells. "What's your story?" Gregory asked, making Negan roll his eyes. The man looked up, tears still cutting through his filthy cheeks.

"My group...they all died, my girlfriend Vicky, she's dead. I've been wandering with this stupid baby I got from this couple about a year back. My Vicky wanted a baby so bad so...we fucking shot them up on the side of the road and grabbed it. I came to the Hilltop and they took me here..."

Negan lifted his head, for the first time in weeks, finally seemed alert. A baby... No, it couldn't be. The other baby had been killed by that spit-fire who tried to shoot him. She plunged the knife right down into the baby's skull. No, all his children were dead. One destroyed in the cabin where Lucy first gave birth, that one murdered by that bitch, and the other died inside Lucy the day in the field. Negan felt his heart hammer as he swallowed, his throat still hurting so badly. Looking up, Negan stared at the man.

"A couple you say?"

His throat was dry and raspy, even making Gregory raise an eyebrow and look over shocked. These were the first words Negan had spoken since he was brought here. The man looked over, still crying.

"Yeah, I've killed a good amount of people, but looking back I shouldn't have taken the fucking thing. Nearly got me killed more than once since Vicky died."

"Was it their baby?"

The man shook his head and wiped his eyes, sniffling loudly.

"No, they took the baby from this woman who wandered to their cabin they were holding up in. She was hurt real bad and dying. Had twins I guess and one of them didn't make it. They promised to take care of it for her...and we came along like fucking animals and killed them dead snatching it."

Negan couldn't believe it. They had been wrong. That baby killed here hadn't been his. This one was. Sitting up straight, he glared.

"Where is the baby now?"

"At the Hilltop, he hasn't eaten in awhile and he's sick. Poor thing might die...God knows I deserve to!"

Burying his head down he continued to weep before Negan knew he needed to ask one last thing. Swallowing again, feeling his throat ache, he rubbed his beard.

"Does he have freckles?"

The man lifted his head looking confused, he sniffled again.

"Yeah why?"

Negan shook his head showing it wasn't important. Instead his heart ached badly. Here he was stuck in this God awful cell, while his son, his baby...was with these pricks. For a moment he thought of saying something to Rick next time he popped his stupid little face in to check on them. Then he remembered that little bitch slamming that knife down in that baby's skull. He knew there was plenty of people that hated him, maybe most...maybe all. Most of all that widow.

They wanted revenge, and that asshole Rick might very well be the only person keeping him alive. Not that he really cared. He just wanted this to end, then maybe he would get some peace and be with his Lucy again... He missed her so badly it hurt. He knew he had been awful to her, just as awful as he had been with his real wife. Still, as horrible as he had been...he loved her. He just wished she had never remembered, he could have fought though this bullshit. Started a family with her, never looked back... Now he knew that baby hadn't been his. It was just some other abandoned child. No, this was reality. He had a child...his son was alive.

He hated to admit, night after night he thought of Lucy and thought of the baby growing in their belly. She hadn't delivered, and that meant their baby had died, and turned...spending all that time floating in her dark rotting womb... His stomach turned at the thought. He sat there, before knowing it was best not to say a word. There was no way these fuckers were going to let him out. Unless someone came in here shooting, he wouldn't be put out of his misery. He was destined to sit here and rot until the end of his days. The only relief he got was when he slept. There he would drift off, and make this fantasy that he was back in his real house, before all of this happened. But instead of Lucille, he had Lucy. They were married, with plenty of babies. They were happy, and every night after making love for hours, she would lay sprawled across him, sleeping soundly. This was his perfect safe little world... Until he opened his eyes. He thought of saying something, wanted to so badly...but instead he stayed silent.

Trying to make a plan.

That night...

"Negan?"

Negan grunted in his sleep, not wanting to awake from this image he had made for himself. He was in the shower with Lucy, soaping her up and gently kissing her neck. He heard his name echo, being called from far away. He fought to hold onto the image of wrapping his arms tightly around his wife, seeing that beautiful smile of hers...

Then...his eyes fluttered open.

Lucy was there.

She looked as she did before. No scarf tied around her head, no bloodshot eyes, no damage. In fact, she looked even more beauitfuil than she ever did. She was dressed like she had back in their quarters all that time ago when he figured she hadn't remembered yet. He remembered she welcomed him like this, looking sexy and slutty. She was sitting on the edge of his cot, her eyes looking sad in the thin moonlight that spilled through the bars in the window.

"Negan?"

Negan was startled. His eyes widened as he stared up, heart skipping a beat. No, this wasn't like the dreams he made himself. This was different. This was for real. He stared at her, before glancing over. That idiot who had arrived, had cried himself to sleep hours ago. Gregory was fast asleep across the way. Waiting a second, he stared frightened before scooting further up to sit.

"Lucy doll?"

He went to reach over, touch her beautiful warm skin. Instead Lucy slapped his hand away and glared. That same fire flickered in her eyes that had turned him on. He sat there, staring at her before Lucy stared, eyes angry and serious.

"Rick might put two and two together, but he knows better to tell. Nobody can know Negan. Even if you find a way to get out of here...nobody can know. Understand?"

Negan gulped, his throat aching again.

"It's really our baby isn't it?"

Lucy nodded slowly, still glaring.

"You saw what happened. You know to keep your mouth shut. You feel any guilt whatsoever? You keep our son safe. If there was any good in you...it's in him. So keep him safe, and never try and get him...even if you get out. Leave him be."

Negan's eyes watered before his face crumpled and he nodded.

"Fine damnit...but if I could..." Lucy stared in the darkness, eyes direct.

"No. Leave him alone. Let him be safe...or you'll lose him."

Negan nodded, unable to believe he was crying. He nodded, wanting so badly to grab hold of her, wrap his arms tightly around that thin body of hers and never let go.

"Negan?"

Negan was startled awake, instantly he sat up, sweating and a little on edge. Looking, he saw Gregory, standing, hair a mess, holding onto the bars. It was morning, and the sunlight was drifting in through the windows. Looking around, Negan saw Lucy wasn't there.

No, Lucy was dead...

"What?!" He snapped. Gregory shrugged.

"You sounded like you were crying..."

"Piss off..."

Negan said turning over. His voice was raspy, and his throat burning. Turning over, he stared ahead at the wall, truly not caring about a single thing. Only that he knew Lucy was right. Even if he did get out...he couldn't tell.

Nobody could know...

Elsewhere...

Rick and Michonne watched as Judith smiled, sitting on a spread out blanket in the shade. The baby had been released from medical, and besides being a little nourished, and a little under weight, he was perfectly healthy. Maggie had stayed with him, and after being fed, and being put on antibiotics, he seemed much more alert. He had been bathed, and changed into fresh clothing. He was walking and seemed happy enough. He wasn't talking, but the second Maggie carried him out, Rick took him. Both locked eyes, but didn't say a word. Rick knew things very well might never be the same after he saved Negan. He had his reasons, but he could sense a distance. That's why he elected certain people to watch the cells. He hated to admit it, but even Daryl seemed different. Today he brought Judith and the baby back to Alexandra. Him and Michonne planned on spending the night and overseeing more construction. Setting both babies up, they sat underneath the shade on the blanket, surrounded by dolls and rubber blocks.

The entire ride over, the baby stayed silent, staring out the window, not making so much as a noise, Once they got there, Michonne took the babies, while Rick made his rounds to see how construction was going. Now that he returned, he sat on one of the house's porch steps with Michonne watching the babies. The boy was in overalls and a stripe shirt. His dark hair was coming in thick and wavy, and his eyes were gorgeous. He sat there, looking curious as Judith giggled and held up her toys for him to see.

"I'm going to tell you something...but nobody can know."

Michonne glanced over.

"What?"

"That's Negan's son."

Michonne stared at him in disbelief before slowly returning her gaze back to the two babies.

"But..." Rick shook his head.

"Lucy told me about the couple who took the baby that she had. The story matches. That baby...the one that was killed, wasn't Negan's."

"Jesus Christ...how sure are you?"

"Sure. It's him. You know people didn't agree with my choice in keeping him alive..."

Rick motioned across the way to the house that held the cells, along with the windows. Two of which belonged to Negan's cell. Sighing, Rick shook his head.

"I never thought I would say this...but we can't risk it. I'm only trusting you. If word gets out...somebody...anybody might try and hurt him. Look what happened before."

Michonne nodded before sighing.

"Not even Mikey?"

Rick shook his head.

"Not even him.

Just us...Negan can never know. Carl wanted us to build a new world...and I think Lucy did too. He may look like Negan, but I think there's Lucy in him. He deserves a chance at least."

Michonne nodded, before reaching over and squeezing Rick's hand. Both of their attention went back to the two babies sitting on the rug. Judith had acutely gotten the boy to laugh. He giggled, his chubby face lighting up. Rick remembered asking the coward that had brought him what the baby's name was.

The man said Ryan.

So Ryan it was.

The baby, sat giggling and laughing underneath the sunshine, unaware that his father from across the street was standing on the bench, grasping onto the bars of the window, and looking out in disbelief. Rick, Michonne, his adorable daughter, and his son...were all sitting together. It was hard to see, but he stared and even found himself grinning through tears as he watched the baby laugh and wave his tiny hands of his to Judith, Rick's girl.

The baby was beautiful... In fact the most beautiful thing he had ever seen.

Sniffling, he knew it was best not to lead on. If the topic of the kid got brought up in front of him he would play dumb. Releasing the bars, he sat back down on the bench and roughly wiped his raw eyes. Gregory and the other prisoner watched confused, having no idea what he had been looking at. Sitting on the bench, Negan sat back, clasping his hands together before nodding. If he could do one thing...one single thing for Lucy it would be this. He would stay far away, and never let anyone know. Closing his eyes, he nodded.

"That's a promise my sweet Lucille...that's a promise.

The End. April 2016 - April 2018