A/N: this started as a drabble that was just to get some feelings and emotions out, and I found I just couldn't stop writing.

He had a long walk ahead of him. He had considered burying Merle and trying to get some rest, but decided it would be for the best to get back now. The Governor would be angry and focused on taking down the prison. A walker stumbled toward him, slowed by a mangled foot. He took one single gunshot in the hope it would draw any hidden walkers. When none came, he tucked the gun into his waistband and set his crossbow down.

He dragged Merle's body to a small shed and secured it with the intention of coming back later to give his body a proper burial. No matter how much they may have disliked Merle, he hoped that they could do this small thing as they were his only family now. Merle had tried in the end after all, whether as an atonement or a sacrifice, he wasn't exactly sure.

Walking back in the dark was not what he wanted to do. He'd run off on foot without even thinking. He looked around and saw a car that had rolled into the side of the grain silo. Merle's handiwork he was sure, an attempt at a diversion. He approached the car and pulled off the bodies of two walkers that had been shot through the head, probably by the Governor's men.

He opened the door and saw two wires that had been yanked apart. Most likely Merle had sent the car as a noise diversion for the walkers. He climbed in the driver's seat and clicked off the radio. He didn't need to hear the last song his brother had listened to. He twisted the wires together and eased the car into reverse, slowly backing it out of the silo, hoping it wouldn't catch.

Before he left, he paused at the shed where he'd stored his brother's body. There would be no more wondering. No 'Where is Merle? Is he safe? Is he dead?' Daryl turned his hand over. Merle's blood had dried there. His brother had died and he put him down. He had left for good, and he wasn't coming back.

Daryl turned onto the main road and headed toward the highway. He passed only three walkers. He and Michonne between them must have cleared most that had been around. There was a sign for a small town ahead. He took a right and drove into the center of town and disconnected the wires. He looked around and spotted what he'd hoped to find. He exited the car and loaded his crossbow. It was more likely there would be walkers here.

He smashed the lock and entered the small shop. It took him several minutes, but he found what he was looking for and he smiled. He reached for the door and stopped. A walker was shuffling by. He waited for it to pass and opened the door, making a clean shot. As he retrieved the arrow, his eyes caught a display in the opposite window. He crossed the street and stared for a while.

This he could save for later. The lock had already been smashed on this one, but the store looked pretty much intact. He supposed whoever had done it came for the gun and left. He made his selections and exited carefully. He surveyed the quiet, empty street and sighed. When would the world be more like this? When would most of these fuckers die off and leave the world to the living? He knew it would happen eventually, it was just a matter of when.