Protective

Carl frantically banged on the door of his parents' house. He didn't care that there were now three small children living in the house including Hershel, he didn't care that it was still dark outside and he didn't care that it was a Sunday, a day when everyone normally slept in. None of that mattered to Carl Grimes. All that mattered was that Enid was barely three months pregnant and had been throwing up for the past hour. She had a fever and for the past week had been throwing up constantly. It might just be morning sickness but Carl wasn't taking any chances.

With Siddiq away with Heath, Magna and Yumiko on a supply run, Carl knew that the next best thing would be Maggie and Michonne both of whom had been pregnant and might be able to help Enid.

He kept knocking on the door and finally the door flew open and Michonne stood there looking disheveled and hastily tying a robe around her waist.

"Carl it's six in the morning what's the problem?" she asked, her facial expression was a mix of annoyance and concern.

"It's Enid. I think something wrong with the baby or maybe it's just the flu or what if…what if she was?" Carl's voice was shaking and he was shaking and his head has bobbing frantically.

Michonne place her hands on his shoulders to steady him, "Carl look at me."

He stop shaking and his breathy started to steady. He looked his step mother right in the eyes and gave her a worried look, "I'm scared Michonne."

A sympathetic look appeared on her face, "I know Carl, but getting all worked up isn't going to help Enid or the baby so tell me what's going and we'll go from there," Michonne said in a calm but firm voice.

"Okay," Carl exhaled deeply, "For the past week or so she's been throwing up every morning nonstop and the other day she's been moody and well she's sore…in um certain places," Carl's cheeks grew blushed and he turned away from his stepmothers amused gaze.

"This morning she woke up with a fever and she said she was more nauseous then she usually is," Carl explained, " I don't know what to do, what if it's something like phenomena or influenza or…" Carl started to list off different illnesses and his breathing became quick and rapid.

"Carl calm down," Michonne said and slowly his breathing returned to normal and he looked at Michonne with concern filling his deep blue eyes.

"Carl, Enid is experiencing a very extreme form of morning sickness." Michonne said.

"Really but what about the fever and being sore and did I mention she's been tired lately?"

"All of which are normal symptoms of pregnancy and the best thing to do is let her rest and have her eat foods that won't upset her stomach," Michonne explained, "Try saltines and ginger ale and you know for me, sucking on lollipops seemed to really help with the nauseous."

"Really? That's it…that's all I can do?"

She nodded, "Yes, Carl, that's all you can do."

"I just hate seeing her sick and helpless."

Michonne smiled at him. Carl may not be her biological son but he was like a son to her and seeing how mature and kind hearted he was filled her with pride. He was an amazing husband and she had no doubts after seeing how he was with Judith, Hershel and Lydia that he was going to be the most nurturing, loving, and attentive father any child could ever wish for.

"I know you do and Enid does to, just go home and get her to rest…she's around her third month by know so this should be done with soon."

Carl sighed and smiled appreciatively at his stepmother, "Thanks Michonne and sorry for waking you up so early," he said.

"No problem Carl, now go home and be with Enid."

"Will do." And with that Carl was off running for his house a few blocks away. Michonne chuckled and watched as Carl ran off. She loved her stepson and couldn't wait to be a grandparent but she hoped that Enid pregnancy went by smoothly because Carl's protectiveness could be exhausting for everyone.

/

"Enid what are you doing up?" Carl asked when he saw Enid standing at the stove, boiling a kettle.

"I'm making some herbal tea, Maggie said it would help with the morning sickness," Enid said, not bothering to look at him.

Before she knew it she felt herself being lifted on the ground as Carl scooped her into his arms. One of his arms was tucked under her knees and the second one was wrapped around the small of her back, she let out a breathy moan when she felt his knuckles rub along her sore back.

"Carl what are you doing?" she demanded as he carried her out of the kitchen and up the stairs.

"Michonne said you need to rest, I'll get you some tea and saltines once you're back in bed," Carl explained as he placed her on their bed and started to tuck her in.

"Carl I'm fine, morning sickness is normal, you don't need to fuss over me," Enid snapped. She felt guilty immediately. She knew Carl was just trying to help and while she loved him for being protective, she was tired and cranky and felt sick and she just wanted herbal tea and something to take away the killer headache she had.

"I'm sorry, I'm just so tired and I feel like crap," she apologized, "I know you're just trying to help."

"I am, but if you just want some space I can go downstairs for a while," he offered.

She shook her head and her soft brown hair clung to the tiny beads of sweat on her flushed cheeks. "No its fine I just…can you get me a cold cloth for my forehead and some soup…the kind with noodles and my tea and then could you rub some vapour rub on my belly?" she asked.

"Yeah you got it," he said, giving her a smile and then leaving the room, on a mission to help Enid in any way he could.

Enid sighed and leaned back in the bed, only for the familiar feeling of nausea to return and she again bolted out of bed and ran down the hall towards the bathroom.

As she kneeled over the toilet, the cold linoleum tiles on the bathroom floor sent shivers through her warm body like she had just jumped into a pool of ice water, she thought about her life.

She would be twenty in a few months and she was already pregnant. It certainly wasn't how she pictured her life going, but even with the intense morning sickness, she had no regrets about anything.

/

"Why exactly are we doing this?" Henry asked as he watched Lydia pick the lock on the door to a lawyer's office.

When she had told him she was going out on a mission and asked him if he wanted to come along, he had jumped at the chance. It was better than sitting around at the house where Jerry and Eduardo were staying. They were really nice guys and Jerry looked out for Henry, but the fourteen year old blond boy had been craving some adventure and if it meant he had to deal with Lydia then so be it.

She turned and rolled her green eyes at him, her pale freckled cheeks where red from the cold and snow flakes stuck to her blond curl. To Henry she looked cute but he would never tell her that. He got the feeling that she would probably kick the crap out of him if he so much as made any comment that could be interrupted as flirting.

"I told you moron, we're here because I need to get a gift for Carl and Enid," she said and with a grunt shouldered the door until it opened. She turned towards him, "You coming?"

He nodded and raising his staff, followed her into the building.

The inside of the building was a mess. Dust covered the desks and office chairs and random papers were scattered across the floor and the place smelled like death.

Lydia made her way towards a filing cabinet and looked at the labels until she located the right one. She fiddled with the lock and was too occupied to notice the closet next to the filing cabinet rattle and swing open.

A walker dressed in a suit and tie fell out of the cabinet and noticing Lydia, snarled and moved for her.

Before Lydia could move she felt herself shoved out of the way and she hit her head on the filing cabinet. Henry used his staff to hit the walker in the legs, tripping it up and it fell to the ground. It struggled for a second until Henry stabbed it in the head with the sharp side of his staff.

Once the walker stopped moving, Henry turned around and looked at Lydia who was rubbing her head.

"Are you okay?" he asked.

"Yeah except for my head," she snapped and glared at him, "I can take care of myself."

He rolled his eyes and let out a huff, "I was trying to protect you. Sorry about your head."

"You should be moron," Lydia said as she reached into the filling cabinet and pulled out a piece of paper. She folded it up neatly and tucked it into the pocket of her heavy winter coat.

She stood up and looked at Henry, "I didn't ask you to protect me. I can take care of myself," she snapped and walked towards the door.

He gave her a dirty look and followed her out of the office towards the road. She was pissed at him and probably wouldn't talk to him for the entire two hour walk back to Alexandria.

/

Enid was lying in bed, a mug of now cold tea was resting on the night table and her hand was running soothing circles around her belly. After spending hours running around getting anything she needed and pestering her to relax, Carl was lying beside her.

When she was fifteen she had found his protective nature annoying and somewhat demeaning. Then she had realized that it was his way of caring for people. Enid was an independent person and she hated to feel like she needed to be coddled or protected. She had survived by herself for several months, she knew how to take care of herself. When Carl had locked her in the closet she had been furious. How dare he treat her like some fragile doll.

It wasn't until later that she realized it was his way of loving her was to try and shield her from any danger that he possibly could. After being alone for so long, it made her feel safe. Carl was the only guy she had kissed or actually dated, but the way he made her feel when he wrapped his arms around her or held her, she knew that he was the one, even if his protective nature went overboard and became annoying at times

After being with Carl for almost four years, she'd learnt that being protective of someone was part of loving them. If anything she was just as protective of Carl as he was as her. Prime examples being when they'd fought Simon and Arat and when they'd been held captive by the Whisperers.

"Boys are stupid…they treat us like we're fragile little dolls who need to be protected from everything," Lydia said as she stormed into the room and threw herself down onto the bed with a sigh.

Carl and Enid exchanged a curious look, "What brought this on?" Carl asked.

"Henry and I were out today and this walker came out of nowhere and he just shoved me out of the way and took it down himself. Like I can take care of myself."

She looked between Carl and Enid with an annoyed look on her face, "I tell you if her does it again I'm going to take that staff and shove it so far-"

"Lydia!" Carl chastised.

"You know maybe Henry has a crush on you," Enid suggested.

"Gross, don't say that or I'm going to have morning sickness," Lydia said and Carl snorted.

"I'm just saying Lydia, sometime when a boy has feelings for a girl, he gets really protective," Enid said and gestured in Carl's direction.

"Whatever, I don't have time for a relationship," Lydia said, "I have too much on my plate."

Carl chuckled, "What exactly do you have on your plate?"

"I have to protect the two of you," she said and grabbed onto both of their hands, "It came with the territory when you took me in, I'm your personal bodyguard."

Enid and Carl let out a laugh. Lydia never ceased to amaze them were her serious yet spunky personality, and while Lydia had never said it, Carl and Enid knew that she loved them, just as they loved her. They loved and protected each other, just like any family would.