“Come on, tell big ol’ Negan where the fuckin’ shoe pinches”, Negan drawled, propping his elbows onto the wooden surface of the kitchen table to get a little closer to you and allow his hazel eyes to lock with yours. But instead of keeping them locked you glanced back down to poke some more in your lunch while he you heard him letting out a small but deep sigh. “It’s just a bit much right now…everything”, you mumbled, clenching your jaw uncomfortably as you tried to pack your feelings and thoughts into words without revealing too much yet. “What? The shifts? Sweetheart, I already told you I can take some more off of you”, he said, his voice turning a little softer, even concerned as exhaled tightly and looked up at him, shaking your head slightly. “That was great with that one shift, and I’m really thankful for that but I can’t do this on a regular basis…when I get a special treatment each and every time I’ll stir something up and I don’t want that. I don’t wanna lose the other’s respect or even become some kinda underdog because of that”, you mumbled, spinning your fork uneasily between your fingers as if it would be the answer to each and every of your problems. “They wouldn’t fucking disrespect you, not if I-”, Negan began, stern and with protectiveness swinging through his voice before you stopped him right there. “Negan”, you said, glancing up and capturing his eyes at you cut him off, knowing too well that his intervening would make it all just worse. Another deep sigh fell from his lips as he clenched his jaw and puckered his brows slightly, pondering before his eyes met yours again. “Alright…I get that. but either way, I got the damn feeling you’re not telling me everything that’s buzzing through your pretty head”, he said, his glance intensifying as soon as it had your eyes on lock, refusing to let them go. You shifted uneasily over your chair, attempting to use your food once more to distract yourself from the situation while you exactly knew that he was right and even more, that he wouldn’t stop until he had pushed all concerns out of sight. So yes, there was something more but you couldn’t tell him, hell, you’d make a fool out of yourself and turn this all into a huge embarrassment, maybe even change things between the both of you. You were growing closer, but not that close yet to ask for something you had immediately thought of the moment he had asked. It was simple, yet complicated as hell. And this thing was nothing else than a hug. A simple but proper hug. You couldn’t remember the last time you had one, it had probably been years and each time you thought of this long time a quote you had heard some time before the world went to shit ghosted through your head: “We need 4 hugs a day for survival. We need 8 hugs a day for maintenance. We need 12 hugs a day for growth.” According to that, you’d be stone dead. You damned yourself often enough for even thinking about it, in a world such as the one you were forced to live in, hugs weren’t or shouldn’t really be within the top priorities on the list. Either way, you couldn’t deny that you were in deep need for one, especially with the stress you found yourself stuck in. You just craved to feel safe and all comfortable for once in this whole mess and the person who could give you this was right in front of you, but you’d do hell to ask him. Fuck no, you weren’t gonna do that, no matter how much something in you wanted to let your guards down for once in his strong arms. “So what is it?”, Negan asked, urging a little more while curiosity and worry mixed in his words as he reached over to you, taking the fork out of your fingers and laying it down next to the bowl, stealing your distraction and forcing you to finally look consistently into his concerned eyes, “I’m serious, Sweetheart.” A tight exhale fell from his lips as you stayed reluctant, not knowing what to do now. You couldn’t lie, Negan would be able to tell within the matter of milliseconds. “Listen if you don’t wanna talk, I’ll respect this shit. Just got the feeling you’re holding something back that really wants to get the fuck out”, he said, keeping your eyes locked as a shudder ran down your back, making your mind work flat out. “Like I said…it’s just a lot and I just-”, you stopped, finding yourself struggling horribly, “I could-” You sighed, letting your glance wander through the room, trying to find some hold on the beige paint on the walls or the wooden shelfs before your eyes fell back on Negan’s, knowing that you couldn’t get out of this anymore. “I…don’t laugh at me or something…I just- in this here…I could use a hug”, you mumbled, your voice becoming quieter with each word until your glance fell embarrassed to the wooden table plate. “You’re kidding me? Why the hell should I laugh at you for that”, he said with a soft chuckle, letting your heart that had already dropped by the first few words rise up again. Suddenly, the creaking of a pushed back chair sounded over the wooden floor boards, guiding your glance back up and letting it fall on Negan, who rounded the small table until he stood shortly in front of you. “Alright, Baby. If you want, well damn, I’m right here”, he chuckled, letting your lips gap open in surprise as you glanced up at him and looked into his brightly shining eyes and the pearly whites he flashed with his wide but softer turning grin. “You don’t have to-” “Well, what if I fucking want to, Sweetheart”, he chuckled, opening his arms a little while his eyes roamed over your face. “I’m not only the damn king of fucking, I give great ass hugs too – even though I gotta say I got a little damn rusty in this, haven’t done this in a long ass while too…anyway, now you wanna get in here or nah?”, Negan’s deep voice drawled, sending pleasant and excited but at the same time nervous shivers through your body before you found your body taking over your mind as you stood up and felt Negan’s hands reaching out to your waist, spreading goosebumps all over your body as soon as you felt his touch. Seconds later his strong arms wrapped around you as yours slung around his torso, letting him pull you flush against his firm chest before his warmth and musky scent surrounded you. The soft leather pressed blissfully against your skin as you leaned your face first cautiously against his shoulder, before feeling yourself growing a little more confident as you felt him pulling you closer, allowing yourself to slowly nuzzle your nose into the warm skin of his neck. A deep hum rumbled through his chest and up his throat, letting it vibrate softly against your body as he leaned his head against yours while your emotions seemed to dance wildly within you, as if they got finally released after an ice age of frozen still stand. You could feel yourself loosening more up with each second, melting into his tall frame as if he was the perfect fit for yours while the excited and nervous emotions slowly ebbed down and allowed the comfortable, safe and peaceful ones to show their faces. A whole different kind of warmth began to spread out in you, began to stream through your veins and flow into each and every of your cells as he cradled you against his chest, with each time his warm breath brushed over your skin and with the way he had his arms wrapped around you just as if they built a wall of safety that allowed you to finally let your guards down. A content and freeing breath fell from your lips as you found yourself stuck in a beautiful trance, not fully realizing yet that you were hugging the big bad wolf of the sanctuary. You could feel one of his hands beginning to caress your back, moving just a tiny bit up and down, brushing his rough fingertips over fabric of your shirt while he slowly let his head drop down to your shoulder, holding you even closer than before. The suspense you had felt prior was flowing out of your body with each second you spent in his embrace, with each bit he cradled and caressed you, showing a side of him you hadn’t fully seen and discovered yet, a side he maybe had forgotten about all these years as well. Slowly, you drifted more and more into the beautiful and peaceful trance, losing yourself more in him while you could feel his body melting closer against yours, as if the very same thing was happening to him as well. Feeling how your lips curled into a content smile against his skin your mind made one last act before letting your emotions fully take over, whispering softly that the big, strong and though man who was holding you so tightly in these moments certainly needed this hug and your closeness just as much as you needed his.
Summary: Locked up and alone with his terrorizing thoughts, Negan’s jealousy and fears of loss get even worse as they’re provoked by another nerve-wracking encounter which eventually lets a promising night with the reader turn into the horrible opposite.
Warning: tiny hint of smut, Negan being jealous as hell (and a bit from Negan’s pov again!)
Slowly, you began to drift out of your sleep, first sensing the warmth that was surrounding you, a comfortable and soothing warmth that was building another, a fuzzy and blithe one within your own body. Shifting softly, your eyes began to flutter slightly until they were half open, glimpsing at the bright sun rays that were already enlightening the cell. For a moment, you stayed still before you could feel his arms tightening carefully around you as you cuddled a little closer. A sleepy hum was leaving your lips as the warmth surrounding you got stronger while you nuzzled your nose into the comfort of his neck, pressing a soft kiss to his skin. Gradually, you began to drift more out of your sleep, step by step until you finally got fully back to consciousness and began to feel that there was something hiding beneath this warmth that let it suddenly feel different than every other morning. It was tension that was coming more and more forth out of its hideout, a tension that was usually only stuck in his body when a nightmare had haunted him in his sleep. Confused and still stuck in the drowsy shroud the past sleep had left on you you shifted slightly, raising your head sleepily from his shoulder until your eyes could glance at Negan, look into his hazel eyes that were surrounded by a certain darkness even though their soft orbs got enlightened by the morning sun. “Mornin’, Baby”, he mumbled, his voice was soft as he spoke those two words, completely contrary to his eyes that were backstabbing him in the attempt to keep the mask up his deep and soothing voice was trying to build. His drawl hushed as your eyes wandered over his face, over each of his handsome features, trying to find out if there was actually something bothering him or if your sleepy self was just hallucinating. There was no way he’s had much sleep in the last night, his eyes were yearning for rest while the dark circles beneath them were underlining each of the minutes that had been stolen from him in the past night. His lips were falling into the form of a thin line as soon as his words hushed and were letting the rest of his facial muscles align with it, creating a mine on his face that not only let the confusion grow but formed a bigger concern as well. “Morning”, you mumbled back, your voice a little croaky from the sleep as you gulped slightly, “Everything okay?…Did you have a nightmare or something?” Your voice was a bit quieter than before as your eyes kept being captured by his as they still caught the muscles in his cheek twitching as he clenched his jaw. Slowly, he began to shake his head, creating with each movement more confusion until he finally spoke up. “No, I’m fine…just didn’t catch much sleep”, he grumbled, attempting to pull you a little closer and caress your waist with his large hand as if he wanted to soothe your concern. But he couldn’t, the glance in his eyes and the suspense in his body were too revealing for you to believe him right of the bat and it didn’t take more than another glance of yours for him to realize his failed attempt. With a deep sigh, his eyes wandered for a second through the room, as if he was pondering about what to tell you until they met your glance again, “-And Rick the prick had the fucking glorious idea to change up the guard.” With puckered brows and a questioning glance in your eyes you looked at him, still confused as he let out a humorless chuckle and shook his head slightly again, reluctant to continue at first. “Negan, what’s wrong?…Who’s the new guard?”, you asked, careful and with the drowsiness stuck in your voice as he let out a small sigh, as if he was trying to hold something in himself back as his eyes wandered to the high windows of the cell. Before you could hear his voice echoing through the cell again, it got replaced by the sound of dull footsteps that made their way down the stairs, letting the mine on Negan’s face harden with each step the unknown guard was traveling further south. Your confused glance switched from Negan’s tensed face towards the cell door, trying to catch the moment the reason for Negan’s behavior would be revealed. For a moment, you expected Tara or Rosita to step in front of the metal bars, see their dark hair and dun eyes piercing through the door but no, you saw neither of them. Instead there was an ash blonde thatch peaking through the gaps and glaucous eyes staring right at you, belonging to the figure of a man that let anything Negan’s voice and face had displayed make sense within seconds. Caleb kept looking at you for seconds, provoking Negan’s arm to tighten around your waist a little more with each of it while your eyes stayed on your friend for a couple of seconds, “Morning”, Caleb mumbled, giving you a quick nod while your surprised glance was still stuck to Negan’s new guard and the realization that this change would just throw more logs into the fire of jealousy that burned deeply within Negan, no matter how unfounded this jealousy actually was. He had tamed it last night for your sake, but now that Caleb was right here, right there to let it flame up again, it was just a question of time for how long he would be able to keep it low. “Just here to make sure you’re up…guess you can already tell that quite a bit changed”, Caleb said, shifting slightly but visibly uncomfortable over the cement ground, “Like Eden said yesterday, they’re pulling a bunch of people off to work at the construction for the windmill till everything’s settled, so for now…well for now I’m taking some shifts over here.” His eyes were on you, almost as if he was intentionally avoiding to meet Negan’s glance while you were still captured in a bit of a shock stare, trying to process what was happening before Caleb gave you a little insecure but still friendly smile. “Well then, I’ll see you in about twenty, if I’m not down here by then, just take the walkie to call”, Caleb said, nodding towards the small device by the cell’s door while the man by your side was shuffling up into the pillows and leaning himself against the cold stone wall as if it was giving him a more dominant position. “Alright, thanks”, you said with a small nod, feeling how Negan was growing more restless next to you as he was staying unusual quiet even though you could tell by the way his jaw clenched and his throat cleared slightly that there was a big urge in him pushing him to make a venomous remark. It only took seconds for Caleb to give you a confirming nod and another glance before he vanished up the stairs again and the glimpse you could catch of Negan from the corners of your eyes, that was just enough for him to not earn this certain remark. A harsh gulp travelled down your throat as the last one of Caleb’s steps echoed through the room, right before the dull thud of the door crashing into its lock upstairs catapulted you back into reality, pushing you to realize and process that you weren’t dreaming any of this. “He was down here before, when you were still sleeping”, Negan grumbled, leading your glance back to his face that was even more tense than before while you could tell by the way his jaw clenched and the muscles in his cheeks twitched that he was trying to hold himself back after your conversation of the last night. A sigh was leaving your lips as your mind was working flat out, trying to push the left drowsiness aside to handle the situation as well as you could, or without making it worse by bubbling some nonsense. “I know this is a weird coincidence….but it really doesn’t matter after all, right? Like I said, if he is anything to me than just a friend…and even though I’m pretty sure that’s mutual, anything else doesn’t matter anyway”, you mumbled, trying to keep your voice as calm and soothing as you could before you pushed a small smile into the corners of your lips, hoping Negan’s stare that was still darting at the cold stone would soon fall on you again. “Only thing I know is that I got a little less than twenty minutes with you left and I’d really like to spend them napping a little more with you…especially because it looks like you could use some more sleep too”, you said, putting a little tease in your voce as your hand caressed softly over his shirt, finally getting his attention as his face softened a bit and turned towards you. There was still tension written all over it, and you could tell that he would have loved to just fall into a rant or even give Caleb himself a proper talking-to, but still there seemed to be something in him pulling him by the last strings that were left. “How does that sound, huh? And tonight…if you’re fit enough again, we can do the other kind of napping”, you softly chuckled, finally provoking an all too familiar grin to pull the corners of Negan’s lips softly up and let his hazel eyes meet yours again. “You can bet your ass on that I could do that right now and here too”, he grumbled but still with that small grin on his lips, as if the devil and the angel on his shoulders were fighting for his attention. “Oh I know”, you softly laughed, your palm still laying on his chest as your fingers were tracing in small circles over the steel blue fabric of his prison suit. By the way he was looking at you, you could tell that there was a part of him who would have loved to tear the nightdress off your body and make you moan so that the thick walls would shake and let Caleb know what exactly he was doing to you but instead of giving Negan some more stage for his jealousy you moved in a little closer and glanced calmly at him. All while you tried to keep his glance tied to yours for a few more seconds, hoping to get Caleb and his jealousy off his mind for at least a bit and as he began to slowly nod, you knew that the angel had successfully pushed the devil off his shoulder, for now. But just as sure as you were that the devil was already clawing its fingers into the prison suit again, trying to climb its way up the fabric of the sleeve to Negan’s shoulder again, you were sure that there were hidden reasons to why the angel had won this time. Especially this little flickering in his eyes and the way they softened, as if he was pushing himself more than usual to give in to it, made you ponder for a second. But this second was quickly over as you caught him shuffling down the pillows again and rolling onto his side on the cheaply squeaking mattress, lifting his arm for you to huddle up to him for the little rest of time you had left. ”You’re gonna come here or nah?”, Negan said glancing at you, a soft chuckle rumbling through his chest while his eyes were visibly still fighting some of his inner demons. ”I will”, you mumbled back, grabbing the thin blanket to keep it steady as you shifted down until Negan’s strong arms could capture you and pull you against his warm chest. Resting your head on his arm you cuddled closer until you could nuzzle your nose against his neck, feel the small vibrations each of his breaths were giving off while you reached one hand up until it could sink into his dark locks. A deep hum was elicited from his throat as soon as your fingers traced over his skull, his chest was rumbling in a calm manner against your body as soon as his head fell into the curve of your neck and caused a small smile to grow on your lips. You liked those moments, those moments that let you feel like there was no one else than you two and in which it didn’t matter where you were. Especially since his time in the cell had begun you saw their worth even more, in just those minutes that let each of you shut any lousy thoughts out and you could collect some new energy again. And you stayed just like this for a little while longer, with your bodies entangled, his arms keeping you safely in his embrace and your hand playing softly with his hair while his warm breath and the feeling of his lips brushing over the side of your neck let pleasant goosebumps spread over your skin, until you knew that it was time for you to get ready.
Negan sat on the edge of the cheap bed, stretching his long legs out with a strained but quiet groan as you slipped your arms into the soft leather of your jacket and shuffled your feet over the ground, trying to get a little more comfortable in your boots. ”Think you’ll got your shifts all fucked up too?”, Negan asked, stemming himself off the bed with a small sigh before he made his way over to your side until his large hands could grasp your hips and pull you closer against his firm chest. ”Mhmm probably, depends on if Rick pulled Rosita off the infirmary for the wind mill”, you said leaning closer against him until your head leaned against his shoulder and his arms wrapped a little tighter around your body, keeping you in his warm embrace for a bit longer. ”Alright…don’t let any fucker bother you out there, okay? If you’re still at the infirmary, hell Baby, you’ll rock that shit again…just forget about that shitty last day and get fresh in there, be my goddamn queen of bandages and disinfection shit”, Negan’s voice was serious until the last sentence that let a soft chuckle rumble through his chest as he pressed a quick kiss on the sensitive skin of your neck before he leaned back to look at you. ”You’ll do that for me?”, he asked, a crooked grin dancing over his lips as you began to slowly nod and allowed a smile to sneak onto your face. ”Yeah”, you mumbled, letting your hands sneak up his chest and slide over the fabric of his prison suit until your arms could wrap around his warm neck. Slowly, he was leaning in until his lips could brush over yours before they captured them entirely, pulling you into a kiss that was as always able to let your knees turn into jelly within seconds. Humming into his kiss you melted against him, feeling the sensation of his rough beard stubble and soft lips teasing over yours while his strong arms kept you steadily flush against his own body. You were about to lose yourself in him again, were about to dive into the kind of moment again you’ve had in bed just a little while ago before the sudden thud of a door made you slip back into reality. Within a second you could feel Negan’s body tensing again, his muscles filing with suspense even though his kiss didn’t stop nonetheless as dull steps sounded over the creaking stairs. Feeling how your body was yearning for air you let go of his lips to catch your breath again even though you knew that if it wasn’t for you Negan wouldn’t have stopped. He would have pushed it, although you were still half stuck in the cloud of emotions his kiss had let you swing in, you knew he would have pushed it so his new guard would see you just like this, in each others arms and drowned in a longing kiss. Glancing up into his hazel eyes you could see the suspense radiating from them, even though it felt like he was still partly trying to suppress it. Slowly, you let your thumb caress over the back of his neck and leaned once more up to peck his lips with a soft kiss before you heard how the footsteps came to a stop and their echo sounded through the thick walls of the cell. Within seconds you turned your head towards the sound’s source, catching Caleb’s eyes glancing at you through the cold metal bars while his hand was deeply buried in the pocket of his pants, trying to fish out the small keys for the cell. ”Hey there again”, he said, pushing a small smile into the corners of his lips as he finally grasped the silver keys and brought them accompanied by a clinking sound towards the lock. ”Hey”, you said back, turning a little more towards the door to get ready for leaving before you felt Negan’s arms pushing you lightly back, provoking your glance to fall from Caleb to the man by your side. ”See you tonight?”, he asked, the sentence that was usually a statement connected with a small grin and another kiss had now turned into question and a forced up smirk that was by far not outdrowning the suspense and sternness that was written all over his face. ”Yeah, see you tonight”, you said soft but definitive back, giving him a reassuring smile before leaning up to peck his lips a last time, hoping to let some of the tension vanish. Reluctantly, Negan’s arms loosened, eventually letting go of you before Caleb’s voice sounded through to you as the sound of the keys sliding into the lock reechoed slightly. ”You’re coming?”, he asked, letting your glance meet his before it seemingly wandered for the first time since this morning towards Negan, “And you take your seat till the doors locked again? Roger said that’s how you’ve handled this till now.” Even though it was firm, Caleb’s voice wasn’t commanding, but it still let a frown grow all over Negan’s face, pushing the smirk for you once for all off his handsome features. ”Yes, that’s how we do”, Negan grumbled, his eyes goring through the door as if it could shoot poisonous arrows through the metal bars and let them gore deeply into Caleb’s skin. The frown on Negan’s face got quickly accompanied by the odd and dangerous grin you had seen a couple times before as he made his way over to the cheap bed and let himself fall onto the mattress that squeaked along with the bedsprings beneath the weight that was pressing in on it. ”’Cause I’m definitely that fucking dumb to jump headfirst out of that shitcell against some armed guard while my girl’s right in the danger zone”, Negan let out a deep, but humorless chuckle eliciting an irritated glance to form in Caleb’s eyes as you let out a lost sigh and moved closer to the cell’s door, deciding that it was better for each one of you to just get some distance between them. ”I’m coming”, you just mumbled, quickly slipping through the opening in the wall until you heard the door crashing back into the lock. You could feel Caleb’s hand ghosting for a short moment over your back in a guiding manner as you lanced one last time at Negan, watched him gulping harshly as he was visibly trying to restrict himself from letting his emotions completely take over his mind. Then, Caleb’s hand left you again as your own footsteps sounded dully through the air as you made your way up the stairs.
Caleb was still quietly walking next to you as you began to make your way through the house, up until the point the corners of your eyes caught him glancing over at you before the blonde rose his voice. ”Hope you slept well after that last day”, he said the small but friendly smile on his lips as your eyes met his. ”Yeah, I’m glad I could, really needed that…do you got any idea what Rick planned for my shifts?”, you asked, watching him nod quickly as he stepped closer with you towards the front door. ”Yeah, asked him ‘bout you and Eden when he let me know about this here”, Caleb said, his fingers making a small but quick gesture around the room before he glanced back at you, “The infirmary is all yours now, at least for the next week. After that or maybe a little more, he said he’ll see if he still needs Rosita at the windmill or if he maybe already knows more about Siddiq and Maggie’s Baby.” ”Okay- Thanks for asking”, you said, feeling for a short moment a bit uneasy thinking about having the full responsibility at the infirmary, before your mind tried to push the positive arguments into the spotlight. After all, you liked the work there and a fight with Tara that was followed by one fucked up day shouldn’t take all confidence away from you. You had to do better now, of course you did, and that you’d lie to say it wasn’t putting pressure on you, but on the other side, maybe you could prove yourself as well. If you thought this way about it, Rick was finally trusting you to take the lead there and that was an achievement you knew you should acknowledge and maybe even be proud of.
”See you later then”, Caleb said as you found yourself back outside, feeling how the chilly air was trying to sneak beneath your warm leather jacket to conquer your body. ”Yeah, see you later”, you responded with a small smile before you turned on your heels, leaving Negan’s new guard behind, while the thought of his influence on Negan’s odd behavior pushed a whole other set of thoughts into your head that decided to accompany you on your way to the infirmary and stay swinging here and there into your mind even after your shift had begun.
The bedsprings squeaked softly as Negan shifted uneasily over the mattress, trying to get comfortable on the cheap thing that just contributed some more to his already shitty mood that was just getting worse with each moment his tired mind was torturing him more with thoughts he would like to smash with his Lucille into teeny tiny pieces. But his beloved weapon wasn’t there with him, instead she was laying somewhere in a pitch dark closet in the armory, wasting away next to some shit guns or some of these awful spears the Hilltop had also sent to the Sanctuary in the past. And just like his bat wasn’t there, his girl wasn’t with him as well. He had always thought nights would be the worst part for prisoners, when everything was dark, everything was dead quiet and you were all on your own with your thoughts. But shit, was he wrong. The nights were the best part of this whole damn mess, in the nights, she was there, made him feel human and very often, as if he wasn’t stuck in this hell hole. The days on the other side, they were a pain in the ass. He was alone, but he could sometimes hear the people outside through the thick glass windows behind the metal bars. He couldn’t hear conversations, or even clear words, but he heard that there was something. He could hear a bit of what he was missing and each time he heard a sound outside, it reminded him that he wasn’t part of anything anymore, no leader, not even a fucking simple man walking along others but that a fucking locked up prisoner instead. It ate him up, almost drove him crazy and he could swear that if he wouldn’t have these nights with her, he’d be a lost man.
Crunching his teeth he leaned his back against the stone wall, feeling the cold that was radiating from it pressing through the fabric of his prison suit. But the coldness wasn’t the thing that was bothering him right now, at least not this kind of coldness. It was another one, the one that was making his thoughts even worse, the one that was caused by his new guard. The thought that this fucker had been the one to be there for his girl when the last day had turned into a living nightmare, the thought that this fucker was holding power over him with this shitty little key that was getting comfy in his pants and the memory of how this fucker had looked at her, first this morning when she had still been sleeping, then later, when she had left him, yes, those things were driving him wild. Negan trusted her when she said he was just someone she was seeing as a friend, but he was sure that she was wrong with saying this kind of view was mutual. Before this morning, there had been a small part of him to doubt it, to tell himself that he was allowing his mind to play games with him, but after those early hours, even that part was gone. He didn’t just see her as a friend, not at fucking all. He knew the kind of glance that fucker was gazing at her with. If he could, he’d tear the fucking clothes piece by piece off her body and devour her for hours. Only the damn thought was giving him chills of the worst fucking kind. And exactly this guy, this fucking asshole was out there with her. He wasn’t working with her anymore, that was the only good thing about this guard change, but he could be there with her whenever his shift was over, whenever he had a fucking break, whenever he felt like it. All beneath the fig-leaf of being the friendly fucking guy. The friendly fucking guy who was free as a damn bird and could give her things he couldn’t.
A shiver rumbled through Negan’s body, letting him shake as he squeezed his eyes just and clenched his jaw tightly, cursing about his own sorry ass as he was trying to keep the toxic thoughts from taking over the last bit of his mind they hadn’t attacked yet. They were mixing with the deep rooted fear of losing her and the thoughts he’d already had last night that were just as horrible as the ones now. And they were forming into an army, determined to take him down.
Judging from the way the shadowy lines of the metal bars fell onto the cement floor of his cell, it was about midday and only a few hours had passed since he was alone, so they were way more to come until he’d have her back. Way more of those lonely hours that gave enough space for those thoughts to attack again and again, and even though he liked to believe hat he was strong enough to make a stand against them, deep down he knew that his would be one hell of a battle, one he might lose.
A sudden thud let him flinch up and ripped him out of the cocoon the thoughts had spun around him, letting his eyes snap towards the cell’s door and capture the cause of the terror in his head, slipping his abstemious food through the gap at the bottom. “Here’s your lunch”, the blonde grumbled, standing straight up again before an urge in Negan let him swing his legs from the bed and pushed him to step closer to the metallic gate. Usually, when Roger or one of the other guards brought food, he just kept laying on the bed till they were gone, mostly cracking some joke or little speech just to have his fun by annoying them a little. Just like he had done it this morning with guard whose name he always forgot while that blonde fucker had probably taken a break or something. But this time was different. This time he stepped closer, feeling the rough surface of the cement pressing against the bare sole of his feet while the younger man’s eyes wandered with slight irritant over him. “Aren’t you ordered to stay back during the meal exchanges too?”, the blonde asked, something swinging in his that just pissed Negan off for fuck knows why and combined with a certain firmness. He seemed to grow more confident, seemed to settle his damn ass down in the position of power he was holding over him and seemed to slowly leave the damn school boy uneasiness and nervousness from this morning behind. But maybe, maybe it just needed a bit to push him right back there. “Nah, I’m not”, Negan grumbled back, feeling every muscle of his body tense as he stepped closer until only the cold metal bars were separating him from this fucker. “Why? You’re scared? Pissing your pants that I could attack you through this thing here?”, Negan asked, his eyes narrowing with each word while a dangerous grin was dancing over his lips, eliciting the wished irritation and if he was right, even a bit of fear in his opponents eyes. “No, I’m not, just want you to follow the rules”, he said, in a firm but calm tone, that calm that it drove Negan crazy and that calm that he almost felt like he was mocking and haunting him with his own and now pretty much dead rule-policy, “Since I don’t think you wanna break them and have some consequences following that.” Oh he wished to, he wished to fucking break them, break those shitty metal bars just along with them, lunge at him and shove the damn plate right down that fuckers throat or better, up his sorry ass. And that’d just be the beginning. But he couldn’t do that, this shit wasn’t just about him, no matter what. “Course not”, Negan growled as he stepped even closer, his tongue sneaking out to wet his bottom lip slowly before he was forcing the younger man to keep the eye contact, ready to change the roles again, turn him into the predator again and the blonde asshole into the prey. He was gonna use this opportunity, hell yes he was gonna do that. “’Cause I know the first thing Rick the little prick would take away from me as a damn punishment would be my girl and I can’t have that…no fucking one gets to do that”, the dangerous drawl was echoing through his voice, his eyes still locking with the man behind the bars, capturing how the other’s brain began to work on those words, just enough for Negan to back away. “So nope, I won’t break those little shitty rules of yours. So you can loosen your bodice and take a few fucking deep breaths, I won’t attack you through those metal bar shit here”, he chuckled darkly, bowing down to grab the plate of food, lacing his fingers around the porcelain edges before he got his back straight again. He looked one last time into the glance of the man who was eying him up and down, trying unsuccessfully to estimate him, and even though it was pleasing in its own kind of way, it didn’t give him the satisfaction and reassurance Negan was yearning for. That guy was still a massive threat. “Good”, Caleb just responded, his voice firm as he nodded slowly almost if that was it before a rush of confidence seemed to wash over him , “Pretty sure she would want that too.” The tone wasn’t advsing not as kind as the fucking smile that fucker was giving his girl anytime she looked his way, it had a kind of teasing tension swinging in it that let Negan’s eyes flare up in combination with her mentioning. “What the hell do you know ‘bout that”, it blustered dangerously out of him, his grip tightening around the plate as a pinch of fear slashed through the other’s eyes before he squared up again, as if he was pushing himself to make a stand. “At least enough to know that she can need someone who’s by her side in this….and who doesn’t give her more stuff to worry about”, the voice of the blonde was calm but quieter than before, almost as if he was surprised himself that he was speaking those words out but right now, Negan didn’t give a shit about that. The only thing he could wrap his mind around was the anger that was boiling up in him, the anger that wanted to rip the head of this fucker, but instead the aching pain that was giving the anger company was pushing him in a shock trance, enough for the guard the give him another short glance before he turned away and stepped out of his view and closer towards the stairs. With a deep huff, Negan turned around, still somehow paralyzed and shuffling with his food towards the cheap bed again while he finally heard the descending footsteps echoing through the staircase until they had hushed completely. They were leaving him alone with the thoughts that were slipping back into his mind, whirling up with the brooding anger the encounter had brought into his body into a tornado that was rushing through each of his cells, back on their way to let his concerns grow.
The wind was brushing softly over your face as you made your way down the street, finishing a day that had been a holiday compared to the past one. You had started tensed up, with the pressure hiding in the back of your head that you couldn’t fuck up again, but with each passing minute you had tried to let yourself be lead by what Negan had told you. And it had worked. You had been a little nervous at first, could feel your hands trembling slightly when you were treating your first patient of the day but after that everything seemed to fall more and more in line, until you got back to the usual agenda. The very only thing that had brought you a little concern was still the thought of Negan’s reaction to Caleb this morning, or even more how the next days with him as his new guard would turn out until Roger would take over again.
And this concern got back up into your head as soon as you headed towards the brownstones and caught Caleb sitting on a chair in front of the main entrance, stretching his legs out and spinning the small silver keys in between his fingers before he glanced up and captured your eyes. Within seconds the usual friendly smile grew on his lips as he heft himself up from the wooden chair and watched you stepping closer, greeting him as soon as you were close enough. “How was your shift? Better than yesterday?”, Caleb asked as he opened the heavy door, allowing you to slip inside before joining you and letting the entrance fall shut again. “Yeah, way better. Yours?”, you asked, not only to be kind, but also to find out if anything had happened between Negan and him, even if it was just a bunch more of snarky remarks. “Now that’s great to hear. Mine was fine, pretty different from the work at the crops, but I mean, it’s just for now and they’re just a couple shifts a day. I’ll get used to it”, he said, his voice was filled with ease, but it wasn’t giving you all the information you wished for. “And I just got back. Miles had the other shift till a half hour ago so I’m all fresh for the night”, Caleb added with a small chuckle, leading you through another room closer towards the staircase before he grabbed the handle of the door last door keeping you from it and gradually opened it. “Gonna be a long one and I’m still not all inured with working in the night as well but I mean, I can’t complain, not after the stuff you had going on yesterday”, he added as he glanced for a short moment at you. “It’s fine”, you just replied with a small smile, seeing how he glanced at you for one more moment before he rose his voice again. “Yeah, still. Just glad it worked out today for you”, he said with another kind smile before strolling down the first steps, followed by you as you made your way down.
Moments later you were able to step in front of the metal door and glance inside the cell, catching Negan’s figure that was already slightly enlightened by the petroleum lamp beside his bed and the last bit of light the windows were allowing to stream into the cell. His eyes lit up for a moment as he caught your glance, his lips curling softly up before his glance got more concentrated again as it switched to the blonde man who was getting closer towards the door until he could slid the keys inside the lock. With a click the door sprung open as Caleb turned around to you and slowly opened the door. “Well then, till tomorrow morning I guess”, he said, pressing a small smile into the corners of his lips before you gave him a small nod and stepped closer towards the entrance. “Yeah, till tomorrow”, you said, your voice friendly as you slipped inside and heard how the door closed as slowly as it had opened, with creaking noises of strained metal until the sound of the lock reechoed.
Just as you heard descending footsteps and your glance was about to wander back towards the cell’s bed, strong hands cupped your jaw, fingers slid into your hair and pulled you into against warm lips that captures yours immediately in a deep kiss. A deep kiss that was growing more desperate with each second, with each caress of his lips over yours, with each bit he pulled you closer and let your mind shut down for a few moments until he had taken all your breath. Even when you were catching your breath with trembling lips, his own were still hovering over yours and his hands were still keeping your face close to his while his chest rose and fell strongly against your body. Before your mind could even fully come back, could ask him if he was fine, if this had to mean anything, his deep drawl vibrated against your lips. “Fuck…I need you, Baby. Now”, even though his voice had this dominant and deep drawl swinging in it, it was still just as desperate as his kiss and just as desperate as the next one he was pressing to your lips as his hands wandered down your body, tugging on the lapel of your jacket until he could push it down your arms. You were longing for him, of course you were but something about this wasn’t letting you go. It was by far not the first time for him to surprise you with this kind of greeting, but this time was different and you were about a hundred percent sure that you knew the reason why. “Negan?”, you mumbled as soon as he caught breath for the first time after letting your jacket fall with a dull thud to the ground, immediately letting his eyes snap to yours. “Yeah, Sweetheart?”, he asked, his fingers already brushing over the end of your shirt, caressing the bare skin of your stomach and hips. “You’re okay?”, you asked, his eyes escaping yours to wander over the cold stone for a second before your hands ran up his prison suit until they cupped the back of his neck. “Negan?”, you asked, concern swinging in your voice that let his eyes switch over to you until his hazel orbs locked with yours. “’Course I am”, he said, his voice a little to confident, the smirk that was beginning to grow on his lips a little too bright,”You’re here with me again. I’m fucking thriving.” With that his lips pressed on yours once more but quickly left your skin again as soon as he felt the restricted way you responded, not believing him yet. “Don’t worry, Baby”, he grumbled against your lips, pecking them softly as his arms wrapped tighter around your body. You glanced up into his hazel eyes, knowing that there definitely wasn’t everything fine. But just as his lips caressed longingly over yours again, a part of you thought that maybe he needed this right now, maybe he needed to blow off some steam this way and get his mind finally off the things that were buzzing through it, maybe so you could properly talk to him after it. For one more moment you hesitated, before this part of you and the longing for him you felt yourself brought you to respond to his kiss and allow you to melt into him.
Just as you had kicked off your boots, you already felt him guiding you towards the bed until your back hit the mattress and you felt him climbing on top of you, settling in between your legs while his arms were securely caging you within his warm embrace. Slowly, your fingers fumbled on his shirt, unbuttoning the steel blue top of his prison suit until you could brush it off his shoulders and let your fingers trace along his sides, down his back until you could rest your fingertips just above the waistband of his pants. It took only moments for him to brush your shirt off too, beginning to fondle your body as soon as the fabric hit the floor, kissing and nibbling down your neck and your collarbones before capturing your lips again, letting more heat pool within your body’s middle. His hands were wandering south, fumbling on the zipper of your pants until you raised your hips slightly, allowing him to pull them down as his lips left yours for a moment, right before they crashed back onto them as soon as just your underwear was left on your heated body. You could feel his weight beginning to press in on you again, feel his warm skin right against yours as his hands wandered down until they could grab your thighs, let his rough fingertips dig into your skin to press you closer and harder against him. Humming and softly moaning into the kiss you wrapped your legs around his hips as the heat in your body grew more, letting you feel how it was turning your panties into a wet mess. You were enjoying to feel him closer with each second, each minute, with each touch and each kiss while you allowed yourself to begin to lose yourself in him. But only up until the point where you felt that this wasn’t happening to him, not as it always happened. He wasn’t melting against you, wasn’t sinking into the kisses, wasn’t letting those little satisfied growls rumble through his chest and wasn’t teasingly grinding himself against you. There was a certain tension stuck in him, you could feel that his thoughts weren’t letting him go, they were wrenching on him, as if they were trying to pull him away from the trance he yearned to fall into. You could feel him trying, pushing himself to get to this point he could lose himself in the kisses and touches as well. But before you could think of doing something, maybe even stopping, you felt him growing more restless, more tense before he suddenly pulled away from your kiss. His breath was heavy, his body was shivering while you could still feel his face hovering over yours as your eyes opened immediately, glancing at his tensed face. His eyes were pressed shut until they slowly opened, forming more worry in you within seconds. “Negan, what’s wrong?”, you mumbled, trying to catch his glance. You knew one of the reasons, and while you were sure there were more hidden in the dark, you needed to hear him say them, have him finally talk to you. “Noth-” “No, don’t tell me it’s nothing. I can feel that this isn’t true”, you cut him off, even though your tone was careful as your hand reached up to his jaw, trying to lead his glance towards you. And fInally, his hazel but tense orbs met yours. “Just let us go on with this, please”, he said, his glance wandering uneasily over your face as his words pressed firmly but still pleading out of his lips. “Why are you so dogged on this here now?”, you asked, feeling how desperation was beginning to course through your veins while Negan’s eyes refused to meet yours. And they still kept on doing this as he eventually stemmed himself up and leaned back, until his legs swung off the bed’s edge. His jaw was clenching tightly, the muscles in his cheek twitched and let you grow more restless as you were slowly sitting yourself up before he finally spoke up. “’Cause this”, he grumbled making a small gesture towards the bed before a harsh gulp travelled down his throat as his eyes met yours for the split of a second ,”Some damn fuck is the only fucking thing I can give you in here.” His voice was growling, frustrated and almost dangerous as a shivering breath fell from your lips as you slowly shuffled closer to him, trying to figure out how to get this bullshit thought out of his head. “That’s not true, Nega-” “Oh, it isn’t?”, harshly he spoke up, his voice still trembling underneath the sarcasm before he huffing lifted himself off the bed and grabbed the shirt of his prison suit, turning his back towards you and refusing to look at you as his fingers buttoned it up, as if he was using it to keep a wall up between the both of you. You could feel your ribcage tighten in the pain of helplessness, pressing air out of your lungs before you shuffled your shirt over your body and let your feet hit the ground as well. And just as you wanted to raise your voice again, tell him that those thoughts were all wrong, his eyes snapped towards you again and his voice echoed through the cell. “You got so fucking much waiting out there for you. Fucking anything I can’t give you in here. And that guy up there? That fucker? Oh, he’d gladly take over”, his voice was piercing, soaked in anger and desperation just like the flickering terror in his eyes. “Negan, he doesn’t-” “He fucking does. You’ve seen the way he’s looking at you? He’s eyefucking you”, Negan spat the words out, letting a deep breath fall from your lips as you could feel your own desperation and helplessness grow. “Not everybody wants to fuck me, Negan”, you said, your voice tense and harsher than you actually wanted while he shook his head, his jaw clenching while the thick vein on his neck began to swell dangerously. “Well, he certainly does”, he growled, before his voice got even more biting while pain flickered through his eyes, “And he’s gonna as soon as you wake up and see what kinda shitshow you’re stuck in if you stay with me.” His voice was booming through your head, sending shivers of pain and shock through it before your brows puckered and your body tensed up as you got out of the small shock his words had catapulted in. “Are you kidding me?”, it blustered out of you, your eyes staring in disbelief in him while more hurt feelings began to mix within your body. “No, I’m fucking not. Just another role he’s gonna fucking take over ‘cause I’m stuck in this shithole, ‘cause I can’t give you any fucking thing”, he growled, letting another shivering breath fall from your lips as your mind was in terror, completely at a loss and stuck in a cloud of pain, Trying to breath through, trying to calm the terror you grabbed your pants, shuffling them back on, hoping that this small distraction would calm you at least a tiny bit down. But of course, it didn’t. ”I don’t want him, when are you gonna finally believe that?”, you growled, desperation swinging in between your heavy breaths. ”But you wanna tell me you want this all here?! Till fuck knows when?!”, Negan’s voice was stern, yet desperate as your eyes met his again. He panted as his whole face grimaced in pain and anger, not allowing you to say anything as his loud voice continued. “You really wanna sleep forever on this crappy ass bed?! Wanna live half of your damn fucking day-…life as a prisoner fuck too?!”, his voice got louder, booming and restless, his whole body was filled with suspense while yours got filled with more pain, as there was only a small part of your mind left that pushed the thought that only his desperation was making him say those things and blow up this way. But this small part vanished and got instead replaced with more pain and even frustration as you saw him pacing like a wild animal through the room, filling up with more anger. “Yeah”, you brought out, your own stubborn head pushing it while Negan didn’t seem to hear you, instead he grew even more tense, with the vein on his neck pulsing harshly and with horror written all over his face. His eyes turned dark, a deep humorless chuckle fell from his lips before his brows puckered and the frown spread over his features again, combining with his biting voice. “Oh wait, this all is gonna be just fine, right? Bet we’re gonna have some nice fucking candle light shit dinner, with that fucking petroleum shit lamp and that plate of crap food they’re feeding me”, he called sarcastically out his foot pushing enough against the empty plate to let it rush a few inches against the wall, not enough force behind it to break it but enough to let the sound of its encounter echo horribly through the cell. Flinching up you felt the pain of his words letting a lump in your throat grow while Negan stared panting at the plate, seemingly being ripped out of his rage by the stinging sound. His shoulders rose and fell at a restless pace, his lips gaped only enough open to let his heavy breaths escape while the rest of his body tensed and trembled harder. You tried to grasp the last chance to collect yourself, to not fully lose control but before you could start another try, maybe even get the threateningly growing lump out of your throat you heard his voice again. This time it wasn’t loud and not booming at all, instead the pain got more audible next to the firmness and growling that was still stuck in it. ”You’ll leave. Earlier or later you’ll leave”, those words felt like they knocked you to the ground as thousands of knifes seemed to gore their blade into your skin, wrenching and pulling your flesh apart. “Just a matter of time till you got enough of this.” Was he really thinking that? After you’ve been through hell and back with him? And if so, how could he believe that? How could he think that little of you? How could he think that you were that shallow that you’d just give him up, give what you both have up simply and only because of this cell? You could finally feel the lump in your throat winning the fight it had with you, pushing burning tears into your eyes, tears of disappointment, anger and even more pain before your lips brought out the question itself. “Do you really think that?, you asked, your voice strained and weak but with a stern and biting tone that was caused by the anger in your body that was the only thing keeping your voice steady. “Negan, I’ve seen you bleed out. You were almost dying in my arms…I’ve had you laying half dead and unconscious for fucking days in front of me-”, you brought out, feeling how the tears in your eyes urged their way forward and cut you off. “After all that, you really think I’ll leave just because you’re in here? You think that little of me?!”, you added, feeling how your feelings of pain were completely taking over while Negan’s glance fell for the first time since his last words on them again. And just as you casted your watery eyes down, could feel how the tears began to roll over your cheeks, the corners of your eyes seemed to catch how his face dropped in terror. A shivering breath feel from your lips as your body and mind begin to give up completely to the whirlwind of horror and emotions that was raging within them before you suddenly flinched up as you heard the sound of fast footsteps rushing down the stairs. Your eyes snapped towards the door, catching Caleb’s eyes looking with pure concern at you before they shot towards Negan as his voice echoed through the cell. “What the hell do you want here?” “Make sure you won’t hurt anyone”, Caleb’s voice was resentful and tensed, as much as you had never even thought he was capable of. “I wouldn’t harm a single hair on her head”, Negan’s voice growled, the anger audibly beginning to boil back up again,”I wouldn’t ever fucking hurt her.” “Looks to me like you already did. One way or another”, Caleb said with a dangerous calmness mixed into his voice you were sure would drive Negan even more wild. Even though you tried to stop it and whipped them off your skin, more tears rolled down your cheeks, as if your emotions were stuck in a barrel that was flowing over and over again. “Now get back to the bed”, the tensed voice of the guard said as you first glanced up and brushed the tears off your face once more, catching the furious glance that was beginning to settle in Negan’s eyes as they gored through Caleb. Without breaking eye contact with Negan he reached towards the gun, letting your breath hitch as he rested it on the holster and gave Negan a warning glare. A deep scoff left Negan’s lips as you could feel his glance brushing over you for a moment, before he gave in, nodded and walked tensely back to the bed. As soon as the bedsprings squeaked beneath his weight, you heard the metallic sound of the keys sliding into the lock before they turned and let the door spring open. Your eyes lifted from the ground again, catching Negan’s glance brushing over you, something that seemed like worry and regret trying to break through the mask of anger and pain on his face while you gulped harshly down. “I’ll come back when you’ve calmed down”, just left your lips without thinking much about it, it just slipped out of them, broken and quiet, knowing that you needed your space after whatever the hell had happened in this night.
“Come here”, you heard Caleb mumble as you eventually slipped through the gap after you had grabbed your boots and your jacket, digging your fingers into their fabrics at if it could ease your tension. Just as you were stepping through it you were feeling next to filled up with emotions, awfully empty as well as the person you had usually leaned on when you experienced this kind of mess was now the one that had caused it. A trembling breath fell from your lips as you could feel Caleb’s hand placing on your back trying to guide and maybe even soothe you before you heard Negan’s voice a last time. “Get your fucking hands off her”, it echoed through the cell, your eyes went up in a glare to meet his for a last time before you stepped up the stairs.
“You’re okay?”, you heard Caleb ask as soon as you stood outside the door, fresh and chilly night air filling your lungs and hitting your skin while it gave you a little hope that it might be able to soothe your suspense filled body. ”Sorry, I know that’s not the best question right now, I just wanna know”, he mumbled as you looked up and shuffled into your boots, gulping harshly as you tried to get yourself in order. “I’ll be fine”, you mumbled slightly sniffling, more hoping for it than actually knowing it while you brushed the leather of your jacket over your arms, hoping that its comfortable and familiar feeling might calm you a little. “Hmm?”, you heard him murmur as he held out a bit scrunched but new tissue out to you, raising his brows softly. “Thanks”, you mumbled with a strained and battled voice, taking the tissue and bringing it down over your cheeks to get the last tears off of them before new would earlier or later stream over them again. “Hey, you want me to get you back to Rick’s house? Not sure if walking alone’s the best thing for you now”, Caleb mumbled, as you let out a deep breath, trying to rally yourself before you slowly shook your head. It was already an odd feeling for you that he had seen you this vulnerable, and even though you were grateful, you needed nothing else than be on your own. “Think I need that right now, be alone for a bit…but thank you anyway.” You bit your lips, scrunched the tissue inbetween your fingers like one of those stress balls while Caleb slowly nodded, the worry still stuck in his eyes. “You deserve more than what happened down there, you know that, right?”, he brought out, his glance meeting yours again in the faint light of the street lamps. You weren’t gonna answer this, you were way too rilled up right now, your body was still all tense while the pain let an awful nausea wash over you again and again and besides that, this or anything else regarding Negan wasn’t something you were gonna discuss with him. No matter how confused, hurt and mad you were about him right now. “I just need to go home now…”, you mumbled instead, still feeling how the remains of the lump in your throat were making it hard for you to talk without sounding like miserable little thing. “Okay…but if there’s something I can do…you know where you can find me”, he said, leaning a little closer until you glanced up at him as he was trying to press a tiny uplifting smile into the corners of his lips, even though it got massively overshadowed by the concern that was still keeping his face hostage. “Thanks..”, you just mumbled back, trying to let your lips that were still slightly swollen from Negan’s kisses form into a grateful smile before you breathed through, “See you around then.” “Yeah, see you around”, Caleb said, gulping as his eyes wandered one last time over your face before you gave him a small nod and turned around, feeling the stones crunch beneath your shoe’s soles as you began to make your way down the dark road.
Darkness around you, darkness within you. It seemed like there was nothing else but this darkness, trying to eat you up while you felt how tears began to roll down your face and whimpers left your lips, threatening to form into sobs as soon as you were out of earshot. Pressing your trembling hand on your mouth you tried to silence your louder becoming whimpers, scared that someone could see or hear you this way. You felt alone, completely alone for the first time in a really long while. You’d lost any of your old friends and Daryl and now? Had you lost Negan now too? Or were you on a way for this to happen? Did he think over all this time differently about you and your relationship than you had thought? Did he really think you’d just choose Caleb or anybody else over him just because they weren’t imprisoned? Or was he just scared and did this fear let him lash out or were you only trying to tell that yourself to not face the ugly truth? You didn’t know. It was like nothing in your head was working anymore, stuffed too full with emotions and thoughts to function at all. Everything in Rick’s house, your old and maybe now new home was dark when you finally felt the porch’s steps sinking a little in beneath your weight as you shuffled up the stairs. The last thing you wanted was for them to see you this way and to immediately know the cause. They’d know earlier enough, at the latest when they’d find out that you had been sleeping in the house. Pain was still twitching through your every cell as you sneaked as quietly as you could up through the house, up the stairs, down the hallway until the door of your room shut as quietly as you could behind yourself. Moments later, only with your boots kicked to the ground and your leather jacket falling next to it on the carpet, your body hit the mattress of the bed, your face pressed into the several pillows and your hands fisted soft blankets as if they could give you any hold as new shocks of whimpers and pain rushed through you. But they couldn’t soothe you, those soft blankets, comfy pillows and this giant bed, not like Negan’s arms usually did when things went south. That was the thing about this all, the thing Negan didn’t seem to get…maybe didn’t want to get. Those comfort necessaries were nice and cozy and you did like them but you’d switch them without bating an eyelash out for his embrace, no matter if it was on a squeaking and cold mattress on a cheap bed in a dark cell or not. You would return, just as you had said it, but the thought of it or its possible outcome let piercing pain and fear eat up, let the darkness around you lull you into its terrifying and nightmare-promising depths while the last tears rolled over your burning cheeks before your mind and body gave in and let you dive into the darkness.
“Are you cold? Still?”, Negan worriedly asked as he stood in front of the bed, his concerned glance wandering over your curled up figure beneath the several dark blankets while another harsh cough erupted your throat and sent stinging aftershocks through the rest of your body. “Shit, you are”, he grumbled, more to himself than to you as you cuddled more up into the pillows, trying to get a rest of your head that felt as if the pressure pushing in on your skull was trying to bring it to explode any second. Sniffling, you looked up at him, through half opened eyes that caught him pondering for a moment before he slowly walked closer towards the large bed and sat down on its edge, letting the mattress bend slightly beneath his weight. Your glance followed each of his moments as well as it could, trying to keep the sunlight that was streaming through the large windows from dazzling your exhausted eyes too much before they caught his large hand reaching up to you. Softly, almost overly cautious his palm placed on your cheek, bringing a soft hum of yours forth as soon as his touch met your skin that was so much softer compared to the rough coughs that else escaped your lips. Slowly, his thumb began to stroke over the prominent part of your cheekbone, tracing along the skin while you could feel his glance being stuck to your face as you leaned into his soothing touch. It lasted seconds, pleasing but way too short seconds until the next cough boomed through your ribcage up your throat, letting you shake against the soft pillows beneath your head until it ebbed away once again just to make sure you knew it would return earlier or later. “Fuck”, you heard Negan quietly grumble as he caught the way you shuffled into the pillows, trying to soothe your body from the pain the cough had given to your already sore throat while the coolness tried to conquer your body, tried to march into the blankets and make its way closer and closer until it could slip beneath your skin. “Looks like I gotta be your living hot water bag, huh?”, Negan asked, trying his very best to let the chuckle that was leaving his lips outdrown the concern that was stuck in his voice. Slowly, you glanced up at him, feeling how his hand ran from your cheek down the back of your neck for a short moment, giving it a soft caress with his rough fingertips before it left your body to lift the mountain of blankets you were hiding beneath. “You’re gonna get sick too”, you grumbled, concerned even though you craved for his touch while your voice was barely audible as the cold had taken most of it hostage and was letting the bit of rest it had left you sound like the horribly scratched part of a CD. “Well, then so be it. I don’t give a fuck”, Negan grumbled, his voice softer than the words made it seem as he slipped faster beneath the blankets than you had expected and shifted against you, careful and as if you would break if he would move just a little too harsh. “You’re gonna come here? Let us make this cold our bitch together?”, he asked, a soft laugh leaving your lips as you glanced up at him and caught the hope in his eyes that was trying to make itself room next to the concern that was still not about to beat retreat anytime soon. Slowly, you nodded, feeling yourself crave his closeness with each bit you felt his body shifted against yours. His arms were spread wide open as you huddled closer up against him, trying to move your exhausted body as well as you could beneath the layers of blankets until the moment you could feel him wrapping his arms protectively around you. And god, did it feel good. It always did, his arms always had some kind of magical effect on you as soon as they captured you in an embrace but right now it felt like they had healing powers as well. Humming quietly, you let your arm wrap around his torso and let your head sink into his chest until the soft white fabric was pressing against your skin and left you craving for more. So slowly, you were nuzzling your nose into the warm skin hidden beneath the shirt so you could feel the soft dark curls of his chest hair press up against it, could feel the way his chest was rising and falling with each breath he took and hear here and there the steady sound of his strong heart beat. His warmth was operating on you like a drug, and was letting you crave for even more as he began to cradle you against his firm chest, shift you a little up to let his warm lips press a soft kisses on your forehead and temple and let his large and soothing hands rub over your back and play with your hair until they came to a stop to just hold you. His warmth wasn’t magically letting your cold symptoms vanish, your head was still full and stuffed with pressure, your nose was still running and left you sniffling, your coughs were still letting your body erupt with shocks but it was giving you the comfort you needed right now. “How about you go to sleep now, huh? And when you wake up, this shit’s gone but you know what, big ol’ Negan will still be right here”, he grumbled, cradling you closer against himself before a small laughter let his chest vibrate against your weakened body. “Shit, that sounded cheesy as fuck…like right out of some shitty romantic movie, didn’t it?”, he chuckled about his own sappiness, cradling you a little closer as a cold minted, rough but small laugh was leaving your lips. “Mhmm yeah..but I like that idea”, you grumbled into his shirt, cuddling even closer up to his tall frame to catch more of the intoxicating warmth and comfort he was giving off. “Well, then we’ll do it just like that…and just to be clear, nothing would get me to leave you now. Not even a damn herd of dead fuckers”, he grumbled against your skin as he pressed another kiss on your forehead, letting the softness of his lips mix with the roughness of his beard stubble while a smile began to grow on your lips, allowing you to forget about the cold for just a bit.
And as you finally began to drift off to sleep, still feeling his arms wrapped around you, his chest rising and falling beneath your head and his lips brushing over your skin, this smile grew a little more as you knew that this would all still be there with you as soon as the sleep would loosen its grasp on you again.
Summary: While Negan has to bear up in his cell, someone else comes to the reader’s aid as she faces a hard day full of frustration and stirs with that the fire within him that he might lose what matters the most to him
Warning: just some light smut in the end, jealous Negan (and that’s no warning but there’s a little bit from Negan’s pov for the first time)
“Negan, no", you squirmed with a laugh, feeling how he brushed his fingertips over your side once again as your body’s shifts let the cell’s bed squeak slightly under both of your weights ,” That’s not fair.” “Fair’s fucking boring”, Negan grumbled with a throaty chuckle against your skin as he buried his face into the curve of your neck and wrapped his strong arms closer around your body to keep your back pressed against his warm chest. Caressing his lips over the sensitive skin on the side of your neck, he let you hum in approval right before another choked out laugh erupted your body and made you wriggle your body within his embrace once again. “Oh come on”, you complained with a chuckle out, just to feel Negan’s lips pressing in against your skin once again. “Mhmm you poor thing”, he grumbled lowly, before another chuckle let his firm chest rumble against your back as he started a new try to torture you with his touch and made your legs twitch against his. “Negan, I swear you’ll make me kick you in your damn balls”, you laughed, squirming as Negan stroke one more time over your side and pressed another kiss to your neck while his salt and pepper stubble tickled your skin. “As long as you take some good care of them later…”, Negan teasingly chuckled, shrugging his shoulders slightly against your body before you nudged his side with your elbow and slowly turned around in his arms to face him. “Just wait, I’ll find your ticklish spots too…earlier or later”, you grumbled into the steel blue prisoner suit that was hugging his broad shoulders, while Negan’s body vibrated with a chuckle against your body. “Go ahead, you got-”, with that he loosened his grasp a little on you to turn around and get a glimpse of the small digital clock that had found itself for the sake of your shifts to the cement ground of the cell by now, “-three minutes to undress your man and run your pretty hands all over him till you gotta head out.” Negan snickered, looking back at you as he gave you a wolfish wink before you playfully shoved his chest and leaned up to peck your lips. “Bet that man can’t hold himself back and makes me come in late”, you grumbled against his lips that were curled up into a wide grin while his large hand gave your waist a small, teasing squeeze. “Just the truth”, you chuckled, cuddling a little closer to his tall frame. “Mhmm yeah”, Negan grumbled before his grin grew a little wider, “But tonight?” His roguish glance was capturing yours as his tongue ran over his bottom lip until it got caught between his pearly whites, “Yes, tonight.”
A chilly breeze was filling Alexandria’s streets, sending cool shivers down your spine that couldn’t even be fought by the midday sun that was by now rising above the Safe zone as you made your way to your shift at the infirmary. Your stint at the crops had been more stressful than usual, Molly and Seth had been pulled from their work to join the group that began to work on a windmill, just one of the projects Rick was planning to start with the help of the book those stranger’s had given to Maggie. The streets looked a little more filled than usual, everybody seemed to be excited about the new step that appeared more like the new beginning Rick had promised than just the rebuilding of the damaged houses that seemed to rather have a bittersweet undertone swinging within.
When you arrived at the infirmary, Rosita was already gone, like most of the times, trying to avoid you by any costs and as you found a note reading that she had already left a good bit earlier than usual to help at the windmill, you were actually surprised that she had bothered to let you know. Except for scant ‘Hello’s’, you probably hadn’t even talked more than five proper sentences with her since you were back, and all of them had only been about patients and meds that needed to be refilled. With a small huff you shoved your jacket off your body and quickly hung it up before taking a look at list with the long-treatment patients Siddiq had left behind when he had switched for Maggie’s pregnancy to the hilltop. Your eyes ran quickly over it, trying to unravel his messy handwriting to find out who would come in today to get a new load of meds for the next bit of time. It was just one but as your glance wandered further a small shiver shook through your body as you found Gabriel’s name on the list that was sorted in for some time within the next week and you already grew a little restless by the thought of meeting him again. You had only seen him from afar, walking towards his destroyed church when you had been outside at the crops, and it hadn’t been more than a couple of times but the ones you had had always brought up the hours you had spent at the Sanctuary’s infirmary along with Carson, trying to help him while he was finding step by step more out about the relationship you had with Negan. Gulping you laid the list back down and looked outside, watching a group of six men and women carrying large planks of wood that had to be for the new project at the other side of Alexandria.
The sudden creaking of the opening front door made you flinch, urging your glance from the people outside to your left and right into dark eyes that looked bewildered at you before they narrowed dangerously within the split of a second.
”Where’s Rosita?”, Tara’s voice tensely asked, your glance wandering from her glaring eyes to her hand that was clutching her lower arm, blood leaking through the gaps her fingers couldn’t close. ”Already at the windmill”, you scantly said, catching how her eyes narrowed some more as she let out a strained huff and clutched her arm tighter. ”But I can take care of that too”, you said, just as scantly as before while you could feel yourself growing more tense with every passing second she was standing there in the door frame, glaring at you. “Yeah, sure” she just scoffed with a bittersweet chuckle, a provoking tone swinging widely in her voice as she shook her head slightly while you could feel how anger began to pool within yourself. She was doing it again, treating you as if you were worth shit, just like she had done it that day at the Sanctuary. You had put up with it back then but the anger and frustration had stayed lingering deep inside you and now, you were done with it. ”Listen, whatever the hell you got there seems pretty bad. So either you let me do my damn job now or you patch yourself up. But don’t complain if it gets infected”, it blustered out of you, your harsh tone not only surprising yourself a little bit but rather giving you more satisfaction. For sure, this wasn’t the perfect way to react to this, not in your position in the infirmary, but you’ve been acting levelheaded towards her for long enough. Right now, you didn’t care if this was right or wrong. Tara’s glare intensified and only got interrupted by some suppressed winces as she tightened her grasp on her arm to keep more blood from flowing out of her open wound. ”I can do it myself”, she eventually growled, stepping away from the doorframe and into the infirmary. Just as you saw her heading confidently towards the drawers, clearly intending to get her the things she needed herself you stepped forward and let your hands slip in between the drawers, pulling out bandages and disinfection liquids. If she wanted to do it herself, so be it, but this was still your workplace, and you weren’t gonna let her rummage wildly in the drawers or play the boss, like she had done it at the Sanctuary, at a place where you were feeling oppositely to most spots in Alexandria at least relatively confident and in charge. Maybe this was a bit childish, maybe not, but just as little as you cared about if this was right you cared about that right now. ”Here”, you just growled, shoving the utensils over the wooden counters and towards her until she could reach them. Within moments you heard the echoing sounds of water pelting into the sink as you caught from the corner of your eyes how she began to cautiously clean the long cut on her arm up. You let out a strained breath and moved towards another shelf on the other side of the room, trying to keep yourself occupied to be distracted from the growing frustration that was coiling within your body. You were used to that people treated you with caution here, asked for Rosita first and often watched every step you made, every move you did on them, and even though it always gave you a little sting to see their wary glance, no one had denied to be taken care of by you until now. Actually, you seemed to gain a little more trust of them with each day, with every time someone got satisfied out of the infirmary and maybe told others that you weren’t as horrible as most of them thought after your relationship with Negan made a circuit. It were baby steps, teeny tiny baby steps but they counted. And as much as they counted as much bothered it you that Tara now threatened to destroy a bit of the confidence you had built up.
The thuds of the utensils and Tara’s more or less successful tries to patch herself up sounded through the infirmary as you rummaged in the shelfs, folding up some sheets for the patients beds that must have been brought here in the morning. Each of her thudding sounds annoyed you, reminding you of the situation you were stuck in until another one accompanied them as she suddenly shrieked painfully out and let your glance from the white sheets shoot to her bleeding arm. You couldn’t see what exactly she had done to hurt herself more than she already was, but judging by the way she was holding her arm with a face grimacing in agony, strained breathes leaving her lips and the utensils sprawled out around her on the counter, her tries to treat herself had been worse than you had thought. You gulped, seeing the deep red blood flowing in lines down her arm before her glance caught yours and shot you a venomous glare. ”What the hell are you looking at?”, she growled squirming slightly and with her voice filled with utter frustration as you just let out a huff and turned back to the sheets. ”Oh right, you think you can do this better and hey, you probably do but you know what, (Y/N)? I’d rather fucking stab myself than let you do anything for me”, she snapped just as you were about to face your work again but instead glanced up and caught her glare darting right at you. Your lips parted and an urge in you wanted to say something in response to the frustration and anger that was whirling up in you but instead you just shook your head in disbelief, being held back by the last little stings of self-control that were pulling strained on you. Just as you were facing the sheets again and tried to gulp down your grudge another knock let you flinch slightly, now instead of leading your glance to Tara, to the door where a blonde woman stood and glanced confused between the both of you. ”Do we have to treat ourselves?”, she asked, a bit nervousness swinging in her voice as you let a heavy breath fall from your lips, feeling how the frustration was acting up again as you slowly shook your head. ”No, as long as you’re okay with being me doing it, I’ll take care of you”, you said with a small smile towards the woman while your voice was calm but with enough sharpness swinging in your tone to let Tara shoot you another venomous glare. ”Alright, yeah”, the woman nodded, a bit relief falling into her tone as she stepped into the infirmary and finally got you the job back you were actually supposed to do. But you were riled up, and much to your annoyance, that was showing as soon as you began to take care of the woman’s complains. Your hands were hasty, boorish even, your whole body was tensed, your head was somewhere else than where it was supposed to be and it didn’t even ebb down after Tara finally left the infirmary, accompanied by a poorly looking bandage around her arm that made you wonder for a short moment how the hell it was staying on.
And it went on just like this, you needed several attempts to get bandaids and bandages right, gave the long term patient at first the wrong bundle of meds, found yourself letting salves and tablets fall repeatedly to the ground when you were trying to sort them back into the drawer and finally, almost hurt a patient’s wound more with your hands that just didn’t want to stay under your control.
Cursing you found yourself pacing through the infirmary after you had just seen off your latest patient, feeling how you were about to turn into a grumpy mess, mad and upset about yourself and the incident that had caused all this, as you were picking up the trash the treatment had created. A heavy breath was falling from your lips as you gulped harshly before your eyes glanced from the pieces of bandage in your hands to the slim diamond bracelet that was softly dangling from your wrist, marked a little from the work and anything you had gone through since Negan had given it to you. For a moment your eyes stayed fixed on it, knowing that you’d give a whole lot to just sink into his arms right now, shut your eyes and let him hold you for a while until the whirlwind of emotions in you would calm down again. Taking a deep breath you glanced up again and rushed around the corner of the counters before a stinging pain suddenly shot through from your toe up your leg and filled your body out within seconds. “Fuck!”, you called growling out, watching how your foot rushed in pain away from the corner it had just bumped into while the sting seemed to become worse with every single passing second. “Fucking crap”, you scoffed squirming out, grimacing in pain as you leaned yourself against the counter, trying to stay there until the sting had ebbed away. “Shit, you’re okay?”, a familiar voice made your eyes shoot up and let them glance into glaucous eyes that were darting with concern right back at you from the other side of the room. “Yeah”, you said, nodding and pushing yourself away from the counter to stand right back up while your glance brushed over Caleb standing in the doorframe, holding a small paperbag in his hands. “Just bumped my toe”, you added with a small and a little embarrassed chuckle before you nodded to the blonde man who was just walking into the infirmary and closed the door behind himself. “You’re hurt?”, you asked, glancing up and down on him to find any possible injuries before he began to shake his head as he glanced back up at you. “No, I’m fine. Gotta take another break from the crops ‘cause the Hilltop’s bringing new supplies…and they brought this too”, he said, lifting the paperbag in his hand a little up as he stepped closer,”We all didn’t really have a lunch break today so I figured you could use some. We already had one at the crops, so this is all yours.” With that he laid the bag right in front of you on the counter, giving you a friendly smile as he nodded for you to open it. You glanced down, letting your fingers gape the opening wider until you could glance inside and glimpse at the self baked sweet bun from the Hilltop you could remember them giving to Alexandria already at the very first supply handover. ”Thank you”, you said, giving him a smile as you felt a little ease washing through your body before it brought out the hunger you had suppressed thanks to the stress. And with that the suspense was right back in your body. “Everything alright? I mean, except for that toe”, Caleb asked with a sympathetic chuckle, leading your eyes back up to him as he turned a little more serious ,”You’re kinda tense.” An exhaling breath fell from your lips, weighing out the possibilities whether he would believe a poor excuse of yours or not. “Yes, I just-”, you began, gulping slightly as your eyes roamed over the infirmary before they met his again, realizing that there was no going back. “It’s that obvious?”, you asked with small and a little helpless chuckle as you propped yourself against the counter and eyed him. “Mhmm”, he said, nodding as he gave you another small smile as if he was trying to motivate you to go on. You let out a sigh, glancing for a moment outside to a few people who were carrying new supplies towards the houses and gave yourself a little push. “Just a bit frustrated…Tara and I-”, you said, stopping to look up to him ,”Kinda came to blows.” “Since then everything goes pretty much downhill here”, you added, another sigh falling from your lips while you tried to keep the little smile on your face where it was, to seem a little less of the mess you actually were. “Looks fine here as much as I can tell”, Caleb said with an uplifting smile, propping himself slightly against the edge of the wooden counter and ran a hand over the slight stubble that was covering his jaw. “Well, now”, you mumbled with a small and a little nervous chuckle as you made a quick hand gesture around the room that was except for the both of you empty of any patients, “I fucked up some things I really shouldn’t have fucked up.” Your eyes wandered from Caleb through the room, a bit restless and uneasy before you suddenly heard his voice leading you right back to his eyes as he was gesturing toward the paperbag on the counter. ”How about you eat something and then everything might look a little better”, Caleb said with another friendly smile dancing over his lips as he nudged the paperbag a little closer towards you “At least that always helps me.”
After realizing rather quickly that he was actually being right, you found yourself sitting at the table right next to one of the large windows in the infirmary, eating the sweet bun that was slowly stilling your hunger. Caleb had let him fall right on the chair towards you and after trying to light your mood a little more and cheer you up, he was now fumbling on his walkie and was talking to his sister, trying to find out when the Hilltop would finish bringing new seedlings to the crops and they could start to work again. “I’ll just tell you when I get new information”, the voice of the younger girl sounded with a sigh through the walkie, her words slightly crackling through the statics. “Alright”, Caleb grumbled as you swallowed another piece of the soft dough and watched him tugging the walkie back to the waistband of his jeans before his glance wandered back to you. His lips that had before been pressed into a thin line loosened up again, giving you another kind smile as he shuffled in his seat to sit a little straighter up until he could prop his arms on the wooden table. “Better now?”, he asked, perking his eyebrows a little up while you fumbled on the paperbag beneath the last bit of the bun you had left. “Yeah, a bit”, you said with a small smile at the guy who had without a doubt been the most open and friendly person towards you since you were back and right now, you were glad to have someone who you might even be able to call a friend with you in the infirmary. “Knew it!”, Caleb chuckled triumphantly as a small grin mixed into the smile that still let the corners of his lips curl up. “Thank you”, you mumbled gratefully as you slowly leaned back into the chair and took the last bite of the bun that had soothed the tension in you a little as well. “Anytime”, you just heard Caleb say as your glance was wandering from his outside, to the people who were still carrying supplies and even some of the self made weapons from the Hilltop towards the armory. You followed their way a little, curious what kind of things they were bringing else until your blood suddenly froze as your eyes caught the glimpse of a certain leather vest and its two wings that boasted proudly on its back. You could feel your lips beginning to gape open as your eyes were staring outside, seeing your half brother moving further with the group. He was a good bit away from the infirmary, but close enough for you to notice the way he was tensing, to notice how his eyes were roaming narrowly over the streets in hope to just not catch your figure. “Yeah, he’s here too…I’m sorry, wasn’t sure if…how I should tell you”, Caleb’s voice ripped you finally away from Daryl and the memory of your last disastrous encounter. You glanced back at him, seeing him looking from the large window right at you with an apologetic and even a little insecure glance in his eyes as he let out a small sigh. “No, it’s fine. I just-”, you mumbled, still a little in shock as a thick gulp wandered down your throat while you were trying your best to keep it together and rally yourself. Clenching your jaw uneasily you couldn’t keep yourself from glancing outside again, just to see how the vest and his straggly brown hair eventually vanished behind the front of a house. “Do you know when they are planning on leaving again?”, it just flew out of you before you were even realizing what you were saying, driven by the fear to cross his path again as soon as your shift would end and you had to leave the infirmary. Slowly, Caleb shook his head, his eyes still filled with the apologetic look before he let out another small sigh. “No…but I guess at the latest some time around the late evening. They got a good bunch of people with them so it shouldn’t take too long anymore”, he said, his tone a little soothing as you slowly nodded and leaned more into the backrest, trying to keep your eyes from wandering back outside while the suspense that had seemed to be slightly gone was back with its full force, if not even worse than before. “It will be-”, Caleb began again with soothing tone but got quickly cut off by the beeping of his walkie that mixed with an annoyed huff of his until the voice of his younger sister sounded through the room. “Caleb? They’re done, but you don’t need to come back to the crops. Rick just said he’s gonna mix up some groups anyway from tomorrow on now that he needs people for the windmill…doesn’t make much sense to begin something now we probably can’t finish, the shift’s almost over anyway”, Eden’s voice crackled through the walkie while her last view words made you look at the clock on the wall, letting your eyes run over the moving fingers until you realized that it was about time for you to end your shift and leave the infirmary now as well, but there was something holding you back from just heading out. And this certain something was that you really didn’t want to run into Daryl, not by any means. By now, several weeks had passed since the disastrous argument, but every time you just thought of it you could see the deadly glare in his eyes, taste the venom and hatred in his voice and feel the painful shocks his destroying words had sent through your body. You didn’t need a repetition of that. And you didn’t want to provoke Daryl into another fight by showing up outside, or have him cause some other trouble, maybe even with Rick himself in case he’d find out that he had was on a better path with you again.
You were that deeply sunken into your thoughts about Daryl that you didn’t even notice at first that Caleb had lifted himself from his chair and stepped closer towards you until the very moment you heard his voice. “Don’t you wanna leave too?”, he asked, his voice calm as you glanced up in him, trying to hide in what kind of mess your thoughts were beginning to turn you into before the way Caleb began to look at you told you how much you had just failed your try. He let out a small sigh and reached up to run a palm over his lightish beard stubble before he glanced back down into your eyes. “Daryl, huh?”, he asked, immediately letting a cool shudder run down your back as you only heard his name and knew that you couldn’t deny your problem anymore in front of him. “Yeah”, you mumbled reluctantly, hating to feel that vulnerable while your eyes left his for a moment and wandered uneasy through the room. “My home’s close to the brownstones, so if you want, I’ll accompany you till there. Don’t think he’ll approach you when you’re with someone”, Caleb said, leading your glance back to his friendly eyes and the small smile on his lips while a thick gulp travelled down your throat. “You don’t have to…I really don’t wanna pull you into this or make you put yourself out for me. I can just wait some longer”, you mumbled with a small but to your annoyance nervous chuckle back before Caleb slowly shook his head. “Come on, (Y/N). You can’t tell me you really want that. And, like I said, I live nearby the browns you don’t bother me in any way”, he said, his voice still calm even though a little more firm than before ,”I’d also do it if I was living on the other side of Alexandria, that goes without saying.” The smile was still lingering on his lips as you slowly began to nod, realizing that he was right. He wanted to help so why not let him? And next to that, the day had already worn your nerves off enough, having to wait even longer would only make it worse. “Alright, then let’s go”, Caleb said, before he glanced once more down at you, while you were trying to rally yourself and somehow get your mind prepared for whatever could encounter you outside this house. “It will work out. You got this”, he said, looking at you and the small but thankful smile you were forcing past the suspense that was lingering in your body before his hand reached up to give your shoulder a soft pat. His touch left you again as his voice hushed but for a short moment, his touch that was still lingering slightly on you reminded you of the way a bit jealousy had sneaked up into Negan’s glance the first time you had told him about the people at the crops…or rather Caleb. Even though he had denied it and you knew that he really was glad that you had found at least someone in this mess who was kind from the first moment on towards you, especially now that he was locked up you could tell that this hint of jealousy was still there. No matter if there was no reason for it. You didn’t want someone else, not in any way and this little soft pat Caleb had given you was just another proof. You didn’t feel anything, it was a friendly gesture, but that was it. Besides, you didn’t think that Caleb was interested in you. He was a gracious guy, but he hadn’t made a clear move on you, nor had you ever seen him being something else than kind towards someone. This all, just like his offer now was just him being him, without any further thoughts. Right?
A small huff left your lips as you shoved those thoughts away from you and finally lifted yourself off the chair. It didn’t matter, the only thing that mattered quite a bit now was that you still craved to just fall into Negan’s arms and have him cradle you against his warm chest and that it wouldn’t take too long anymore until this wish could be fulfilled.
As soon as you finally stepped along with Caleb outside, the chilly breeze from this midday had turned even colder, allowing itself to warn you that the days would get even colder from now on than they already were. With a sharp breath falling from your lips you pulled your jacket closer around your body, trying to not let the cold conquer your body as you stepped down the porch and felt the wind beginning to bite into your skin.
The suspense was flaring up from the moment on you made your way down the street, felt your eyes wandering over them, seeing less people than before wandering over them and beginning to head towards the gates, letting you hope that Daryl was already there. Just as Caleb began to distract you a bit with talking about the things he already knew about the to-be windmill, the tension was slowly beginning to beat retreat and you could feel yourself slowly loosing up, your eyes caught something from afar that foiled both of those good signs within milliseconds. There he stood, like glued to the blacktop beneath his worn off boots, with eyes hidden behind a few brunette hair strands that could burn into you even through the distance that was laying between the both of you. For the split of a second your heart and breath seemed to stop, boiling heat and icy coldness mixed into a painful mess within your pulsing veins as you just stared at him while your feet came abruptly to a harsh halt, just like Caleb’s just a moment later. For seconds it just stayed this way, your mind was racing, questioning what he would do now, what you should do now. It was almost unrecognizable from afar but you could still capture the way his hands balled into fists that were just as tensed as the rest of his body, but still, he stayed this way. He didn’t move a step closer towards you, not a single one. Your head was running wilder with each passing second, creating a mess in your mind while a part of you just wanted to let your glance leave the one of your half brother and get your feet to work but your body didn’t seem as if it was under your control in these moments. All until your eyes caught how Daryl’s eyes left yours, his hands still balled into fists as if they were the only thing holding him back from exploding before he turned around and paced down the road towards the gates, leaving you alone. You had no idea how long you had stood there with him, it probably hadn’t even been long enough to fill a full minute but it had been enough to fuck you up all over again. Only seeing him before had brought all kinds of emotions up in you again, but it had been nothing to whatever had happened just now and which was still leaving you standing pinpointed to the street. “(Y/N)? Lets go on”, you heard Caleb calmly and reassuring say as he placed his hand on your back, trying to pull your glance away from the point Daryl had stood just moments ago and get you out of the trance this situation had catapulted you in. “Yeah”, you mumbled still a little absently as you glanced back at Caleb and saw him looking with some concern swinging in his glaucous eyes at you. “You okay?”, he asked as his hand slowly left your back while you gave him a slow nod, still trying to pretend as if you could lead him on. Because actually, nothing was okay. No fucking goddamn thing was okay right now.
The next few minutes rushed past you as you were still stuck in a trance like state while you just kept walking beside Caleb until a small exhaling breath was leaving your lips as you caught yourself walking closer to the brownstones. Every step felt like it was getting a little faster until you finally walked closer up to Roger, leaning against the wall outside one of the brownstone’s, fumbling on the gun holster on his belt while you could already see the keys to Negan’s cell printing through the guard’s pant’s pocket. “I’m fine from here on…Thank you”, you finally said as stopped and turned your head to face Caleb, meeting his kind eyes before he gave you a small nod. “Anytime”, he said with a small smile, “See you tomorrow at the crops if nothing changes?” “Yeah, see you there”, you said back, forcing a small smile on your lips before Caleb gave you another nod, waiting a second more to let his eyes run over your face, as if he was checking up on your wellbeing, before he turned around and made his way down the road.
You tried your best to keep a facade up in front of Negan’s usual guard, but by now, as you made your way down the stairs into the basement, it felt like even Roger was beginning to sense the suspense that was radiating off your body. Your footsteps echoed over the cement ground, your heart beating a little faster with each of them until you finally stood in front of the metal bars and could glimpse past Roger into the cell’s inside and right at Negan. He was sitting on the bed, like always, until the door would lock behind you and he was finally allowed to stand up again. A shivering breath was falling from your lips as your glance wandered over his face, over his eyes that were filled with anticipation which remembered you of your shared morning together that had been so much better than the rest of the day.
The sound of the unlocking door sounded even more pleasing than ever in your ears as it finally let the door spring open and allowed you to slip into the cell, while you could already see Negan’s glance wandering over you, the excitement leaving his eyes while his brows were beginning to softly pucker in response to the tension that was painted all over your face. Just seconds later the metal door crashed back into the lock with a sharp thud, accompanying with the clicking sound as the key left the small hole again and finally allowed Negan to get up. “Hey”, you mumbled, trying to not lose it right at this point even though you could feel the bottled up emotions building more and more pressure up, threatening to free themselves before you wanted them too. “Hey Baby…what’s wrong?”, Negan asked as he stepped closer, his eyes filled with concern as he reached out until his large hands could grasp your waist and pull you closer, letting the pleasant warmth run through you you had wished to feel all day long. Another shivering breath left your lips as you tried to find words, tried to put all the things that happened before into sentences until you just found yourself sinking against his chest, yearning to feel more of his warmth and comfort. Your arms wrapped around his torso as he pulled you closer, letting you nuzzle your face into the curve of his neck, inhaling his consoling scent while his warm breath brushed over your skin as he leaned in closer against you. “Sweetheart, what the hell happened?”, he asked, worry swinging in his voice as a harsh gulp travelled down your throat. “People from the hilltop are here, bringing supplies…Daryl too”, you mumbled against his warm skin, feeling him tensing by the sound of your words that ultimately forced you to back a little off and look into his concerned eyes. “Fuck…did he start some shit again?”, he asked, his hazel eyes darting over your face as if he could read the answer off of it while you could feel words beginning to press out of your lips, leaving the muddled mess your mind had become. “No…just saw him from afar, he didn’t come close but I bet if Caleb wouldn’t have been with me-”, with that you stopped, realizing too late that bringing Caleb into this was for sure not the best idea before you caught how the muscles in Negan’s cheeks twitched slightly, his lips formed into a slimmer line while something else mixed into his eyes, giving the concern company. He was trying to hold it back, you could tell, trying to persuade himself that he should just be glad that there had been someone with you at that time. But just as much as your muddled head didn’t allow you to fully think clearly, as much could you see that there was something boiling deep within him, no matter if he liked it or not. “He was just kind to accompany me till here”, you began, your tone soft as you were trying to find a way to put the puzzle parts together and tell him about your whole day without confusing yourself or him ,”He was at the infirmary to give me some food they brought from the hilltop ‘cause we all didn’t have much for lunch and i just had some fight with tara and my day’d went fucking downhill from there on and he just stayed to cheer me up, I-” You stopped again. You weren’t making anything better, fuck, you were just getting yourself further into this. “Sure”, Negan said, his voice tough but still letting it shimmer through that he was having a battle with himself while you could feel more restlessness in you growing. You didn’t want this now, you had waited countless hours to just come here and finally be able to let your guards down and relax, but instead this day seemed to be damned to just get worse. “Like I said, he was just being nice”, you said, your tone still soft but mixed with a reassuring firmness while much to your bother, Negan let a small, humorless chuckle out and nodded slowly. “Yeah, that’s what he always is”, he said, his voice a weird mix of sarcasm and the tiny part in him that was still trying to keep it together, “I know those kinda fucking guys.” The last part was in a lower tone, as if he was grumbling it to himself as his glance left yours while you could feel the frustration flaring up in you again, taking the last defense of your strained nerves down to conquer your body anew and take control of it. “Negan, I had a fucking shit day”, it blustered out of you, his eyes darting at yours the moment he heard the distress in your voice while a thick lump began to grow in your throat, filled with all the emotions the day had thrown at you ,”All I fucking wanted this whole damn time was get here and see you, I don’t wanna start a fight about some shit like that.” A deep, shivering breath fell from your lips as you stared at him, seeing how his eyes began to soften by the sound of your last sentence before guilt began to sneak into them as soon as your voice had hushed and you noticed that your eyes had turned clouded by the few tears the lump in your throat had forced up. “Alright, I-…shit, I’m sorry”, he said, his voice beginning to soften as much as his eyes had before while he slowly began to tighten his arms gently around you, trying to find out if you let him. “I just-”, he began, struggling to find the right words as his eyes wandered over your face, saying more than thousands words could. A sigh left your lips as you looked at him, gulping slightly as you saw more worry mixing into his eyes. “You still wanna come here? Tell big ol’ Negan ‘bout this crap day?” His eyes were brushing over yours, a deeply apologetic glance stuck in them. “Wanna make your day better, not fucking worse with my jealous fucking ass”, he grumbled, his thumb slowly caressing over your back as you looked into his genuine eyes before you slowly began to nod. “If that jealous ass eases up, then yeah, I still want that”, you mumbled, a tiny smile sneaking into the corners of your lips before a small and relieved chuckle fell from his lips. “Oh he’ll do that for fucking sure, I fucking promise that”, Negan mumbled, pulling you closer into his embrace as soon as you let him just for you to finally feel like you can let go as soon as you could cuddle yourself closer against his warmth and close your eyes.
As the sun had almost fully beat the retreat and the kerosene lamp next to the bed was already throwing its faint light against the stone walls, you were laying next to Negan, cuddled up against his side after you had finished telling him everything about the several past hours, about everything that had wrecked your nerves and turned you into the mess you had been when you had arrived at the cell. Negan had kept cradling you against his chest, soothing you and asking you about everything until you could tell that he was sure that everything was off your chest. All while he had kept his little promise, even though you hadn’t gone into detail with your conversation with Caleb, you didn’t need to unnecessary throw wood into a fire, especially since this conversation wasn’t all too important and besides that, you were sure that you wouldn’t be without jealously if the roles were reversed. Besides, Negan was in here for just about two weeks and to no ones surprise, this was dreading harshly on his nerves too. You could often see him swinging between still acting as if he was the leader who was still in charge of everything around him and the dark moments that made him realize that he was a locked up prisoner instead. “Feelin’ a bit better?”, Negan’s deep voice drawled as he pressed a kiss to your temple, cradling you a little tighter as you slowly began to nod. “Yeah”, you mumbled, nuzzling your face deeper into his warm skin before you pressed a soft kiss against his neck that quickly let a deep hum rumble through Negan’s chest. “Wanna feel even better?”, he asked, a soft chuckle leaving his lips before you slowly lifted your head from his shoulder to look into his slightly grinning face ad gave him a questioning look. “Before you came here Roger boy said I got water for two hours, got about an hour left now…you wanna come with me?”, he asked, biting his lower lip slightly as he raised his brows, “I mean that water’s probably still dick shrinking cold but I promise I’ll make it fun. Gonna be a damn fine distraction.”
It didn’t need more than another one of his roguish grins to persuade you from his idea which quickly let you find yourself stripped down to nothing by Negan himself in the small wanna-be bathroom that was only enlightened by the bit of light that could slip from the cell through the narrow opening in the stone wall to you. Negan’s grin had grown even bigger, his body was close enough to yours to let you feel the warmth that was radiating from it as he grabbed the handle of the shower, reluctant at first. “Afraid he’ll shrink too much?”, you teased with a chuckle as Negan’s wolfish glance shot quickly up and a devilish smirk plastered over his lips. “Nah, got you with me to let him grow again lickety-fucking-split”, he chuckled, his hand reaching up to give your waist a teasing squeeze before he turned the shower slowly on and raised his brows as soon as the water began to hit his bare skin. “Seems like we got some damn luck today. Shit’s at least lukewarm”, he chuckled, glancing back up to you before you stepped closer, still feeling his warm, large hand on your body until the water began to pelt down on you as well. It really was lukewarm, enough so it was still somehow pleasant to feel it running down your skin before the feeling got quickly drowned out by Negan’s arms wrapping around you, pulling you close until you were pressed against him. A deep rumble let his body vibrate against you as soon as your hands ran up his skin, over the dark curls that peppered his firm chest while you glanced up at him until his hazel eyes could capture yours. Slowly, he leaned down, his lips meeting yours within seconds as his kiss and his touches seemed to slowly wash a bit of the left tension out of you. His beard stubble tickled you slightly as he placed another peck on your lips before leaning back and looking at you for a moment, a smile sneaking into the grin that was still painted on his face before his arms left your body, letting him turn to his side to grab the bar of soap that was resting in a small metal basket on the ground. “This fucker isn’t as damn nice as the shit we had at the Sanctuary…hell, this all isn’t that fucking great but-…hope this is still gonna make ya feel better”, he said the moment he stood right in front of you again, a bit of the sorrow he seemed to try his best to suppress still swinging in his voice before he glanced up at you. A forced up, even a little desperate smile was pressed into the grin that had become smaller before you let the corners of his your lips curl up as you wrapped your arms around his neck and pressed a soft kiss over his lips. “It already is”, you mumbled against his skin, leaning a bit back to give him another smile that let his signature grin grow on his lips again.
The water kept on pelting down on you, the pressure varying as drastically as you had expected from the poor pipes in the unfinished house but as soon as you felt Negan’s touch on you again, you couldn’t care less. He was running the soap slowly over your skin, circling it over your shoulders, down the valley of your breasts, along your sides and your stomach while his other hand was keeping you close to him and let warm shivers run down your body. With each little moment you felt him close, the built up suspense seemed to leave your body a bit more, allowing you to sink into a comfortable bubble that excluded anything but you both and this small room. Soon enough Negan ran the soap down your back, before turning you around to let his hands wander over your skin, over the muscles that ached slightly from the work at the crops. Slowly, he found each of the little spots that bothered you, letting you relax beneath his touch and his soothing hands that kept massaging and pampering you. His fingers drew circles over the back of your neck, before they wandered over your shoulders and then down your sides, putting pressure on them at the very right places while you began to relax more and more.
You kept staying in this bubble as you found yourself in Negan’s embrace, your back pressed against his chest, with his arms keeping you as close as possible while his face was buried in the crook of your neck, his soft lips kissing the sensitive skin while the drastic contrast of his rough beard stubble was creating a pleasant sensation deep within you. With your eyes closed and content hums leaving your lips your hands laid on his own, your fingers tracing softly over his while Negan playfully tugged on your skin, chuckling deeply as you flinched slightly in response but then immediately melted against him. You could feel your longing for him pool in your middle, only strengthened by the way you could feel him slowly growing hard against you while deep hums and growls let his chest vibrate against your back. Slowly, one of Negan’s large hands left your soft grasp and travelled down your body, his fingertips brushing over your skin until you felt him finding your sweetest spots. A hum left your lips as soon as you felt him beginning to circle his fingers in slow movements over the sensitive flesh, while more water ran down your body and mixed its sensation with the ones of the kisses Negan’s warm lips were still pressing in over your neck. One by one, you could feel his fingers finding an intoxicating rhythm, could feel him grinding himself more against you, just to gradually turn your knees weaker with every touch and every passing second. A soft moan was falling from your lips as his fingers kept on pampering your clit, heating your body more and more up right until the moment a wince was leaving your lips as you felt the sudden loss of his touch. “Oh Baby, you’ll get more”, Negan chuckled, reassuring you as he turned you around in his arms, leading you closer towards the wall until the cold stone was pressing against your back while his warm body quickly captured yours again within his embrace. His lips found yours in a yearning kiss, swallowing the small hums and moans that left your lips in response to his touch before you slowly slid your hands down his sides, in between your bodies to give him a little bit of the caress back he had given you until you were quickly stopped. “Uh-Uh”, Negan grumbled with a chuckle against your lips, his fingers grasping around your wrist as he backed a little away, grinning at you as a wolfish glance was filling his eyes ,”Let Daddy take care of ya.” Biting his lip he looked at you, loosening his hold on you again while your brows puckered in surprise as soon as he closed the distance between your bodies again. “What? Just wanna make you feel fucking good after this shit ass day”, he said, leaning in to press another kiss to your lips before his own began to travel down your neck again and left a warm path along your wet skin. “Just ‘bout you now”, he mumbled against your skin, his large hands grabbing your waist as you could feel a smile growing on your lips and felt the fuzzy warmth within you mixing with the yearning heat. Slowly, Negan leaned back for a moment, his hazel eyes meeting yours in the faint light as he gave you another smirk and rose his deep voice, ”So lean back and enjoy the damn show.”
And you did so, longing to relax more after this frustrating day and even more so longing to feel him as close as you could. And It didn’t take long until he was giving you anything you could yearn for. His lips were caressing over yours again, switching perfectly in-between deep, rough and passionate kisses, and soft ones that let you carefully feel his every bit of him. His hands were all over you, feeling you up, fondling your breasts and brushing over just the right spots until they had found their place and brought you the pleasure they had already given you before as his fingers were pampering your clit again, first almost torturously slow before putting more pressure and passion into each touch that let the heat in you flare up. Your soft moans began to echo through the small room as soon as his lips left yours, beginning to travel south, kissing along your shoulder and your collarbones, before wandering down until his lips could suck softly on your nipples and his tongue could draw slow but intoxicating circles around the sensitive buds. Your hands found their way quickly into his dark and wet hair, gripping it as soon as you could feel him beginning to tease his fingers along your soaked core while his lips kept traveling further down, until they could find your pulsing clit as his knee hit the cement floor. “Just for you”, he grumbled with a chuckle as soon as you glanced down to his kneeling position that let a small laugh escape your lips which quickly turned into a heavy moan within the moment his fingers pushed deeply inside you and his lips and tongue began to use their magic on your sensitive and yearning flesh. You were losing yourself in him, more and more with every second, with each grip of his large hand on your hip, with each deep thrust of his fingers into your heat, with each bit he turned you more into a trembling and moaning mess, with each flick of his tongue against your clit, with each bit his rough beard stubble sent pleasant shivers down your spine, with every bit he gave you until he drove you over the edge and let an intoxicating orgasm rumble through your whole body that left you shaking within its aftershocks.
You were slumped against him as you first found yourself diving out of the trance he had set you in, your body was like molten against his, only held up by the strong embrace he had captured you in. A big smile was plastered all over your lips as your head was leaned against his warm neck, your eyes closed as you took his comforting scent in and felt the last water drops hitting your skin before the pipes would give up for today. The day had been pushed somewhere far into the depths of the back of your head, formed into something so small that it didn’t even matter right in these moments. Right now, what really mattered was that you were captured in a pair of strong arms that kept you far away from the sorrow the day had brought, that made it feel like everything was actually fine. And those moments proved more than enough that it had been more than worth to wait all these countless hours for exactly this, for something no one else could give you, no fucking matter if there were thick stone walls around you, if there was a shower that acted as if it would die any moment or if there was only a cheap bed in the edge of a cell. It didn’t matter a single bit, the only thing that mattered was the man who was still holding you in his warm and strong embrace right now.
Only the faint light from the high windows was streaming into the cell when Negan found himself laying in the cheap bed again, wide awake in the middle of the night, looking at the very much sleeping bundle in his arms, curled up to his side, with her head resting on his chest and her steady breath hitting his skin. It calmed him a little down, this warmth beside him and was usually enough to let him sooner or later fall asleep as well, but this night was different. A deep sigh left his lips, the vibration making her shift slightly in her sleep, letting him freeze the moment he felt her movements, not wanting to wake her up before she quickly took that worry away from him as she nuzzled her head into his skin again. Slowly, Negan shifted his head, enough so he could press a kiss on her forehead, just to eventually lean his head against hers and wrap his arms a little tighter around her body that quickly let a fuzzy warmth in him grow. Hell, she really was doing some things to him. She gave his heart a rock hard boner, or no, that was a understatement, she made that heart boner cum hard in thick fucking spurts from some giant balls that wouldn’t ever drain. Yeah, that was probably the best description about his feelings in his words even though, and he had a bit of a hard time to admit that, he could find overly sappy and cringe-worthy romantic movie words for them as well. And that with more ease than ever.
It actually filled him with pride to see her that peacefully asleep in his arms, with her guards completely down and calmed down from the shit day that laid past her. He really couldn’t deny that he was feeling like a proud fucker, right up until the point where he wasn’t, where the thoughts that were keeping him awake this night sneaked up again and tried to punch down any fine feeling that was trying to build up in him. And there was something – someone – else that made those thoughts even worse. This fucker out there, who was playing the role he should be playing. He should have been there to calm her down after the fight with Tara. He should have been there to cheer her up after things went downhill at the infirmary, make her laugh until she couldn’t breathe with his dirty jokes or distract her the way he liked to do it. Hell, he should have been there when she had been outside and had seen Daryl. He should have been there. But he wasn’t. He was in this dark shit cell.
He could feel frustration and jealousy boiling up in him just the second he began to think about it, feeling their steam rise up until they built questions in his head that bounced relentlessly around in his skull like fucking ping pong balls. Was that all enough for her long term when she had so much more outside waiting for her? Just him in this goddamned cell? Every night on this crappy ass bed? Hell, she deserved better than this all and maybe it was just a matter of time till she would realized that. He trusted her with his life, no question, and he didn’t ever see her as the one to just leave him if things got though, they had been through way too much already to believe that. But could he blame her if this shit here would be too much at some point? He hated to admit it but no, he couldn’t. He couldn’t stand this hellhole as well, and he was only locked up for about two damn weeks, there were so many fucking countless days to come. Some day, he thought, he probably would come out, see what the fuck Rick the fucking prick was trying to build but till then, a long time would pass. So what the hell could he give her in here? A good fuck? Yes, that was about it and even though he liked to believe that his dick could solve as good as any problem, he knew that this wasn’t actually the reality. And the longer he was alone with his thoughts, the more they were trying to eat him up. He had never been able to make everything the way he wanted up to Lucille, and now that he had a second chance, he couldn’t give her as much as she deserved too. He was doomed to fuck this up as well, earlier or later, and anytime this thought sneaked up in his head a rush of nausea washed over him, almost swallowing him completely. A shivering breath left his tensed up body as he cradled the sleeping figure in his arms as close as he could against himself, holding her tight as he closed his eyes, asking himself if the nights he would be able to do this were already counted.
The sun was slipping its first sun rays into the cell when Negan’s eyes fluttered open, only after they had rested for not more than two hours, maybe three, if he was lucky. Quietly, he cleared his throat, feeling the slight itching of the new bandaid that was pressing over his wound as he was shifting a little against the pillow beneath his head before his drowsy glance fell on (Y/N) in his arms, still as peacefully asleep as he had lastly found her. For a moment he tried to push the dark thoughts from last night out of his mind and let his head lean against hers again to maybe catch a bit more sleep, even though it probably were just a few damn minutes. Just as his eyes shut again and he could feel the sleep trying to grasp him,the echoing footsteps down the stairs by the cell let his eyes shoot open again, provoking a pissed grunt to fall from his lips. “Roger, you fucking early bastard”, he grumbled under his breath, turning his head to face the metal bars so he could see what kind of bullshit his guard was about to create now. It was way too early to get his girl out of the cell, so why the fuck was he down here? Hoping to get a glimpse at his glorious morning boner? Well pardon Sir, gotta disappoint you, that fuckers out of order this morning due to fucking sleep de-fucking-privation…or some other shit. A heavy breath left Negan’s lips as he still heard more footsteps echoing through the walls, and normally he would have put on a teasing remark for his guard, enjoy to annoy some more the shit out of this guy but for the sake of her sleep, he passed on that today. Negan still expected to see the tall, dark haired guy to turn up in front of the metal bars, with the same ol’ face expression that let him think that he might constantly had a stick rammed up his ass but instead another guy, someone he couldn’t remember to have seen before, stood at the door, glancing at him. Instead of Roger that guy was blonde and a good couple of years younger, but tall as well, not as tall as he himself, nor as tall as his usual grumpy guard but still tall. He didn’t have much of the I-got-a-stick-up-my-ass expression on his face, but at the moment, Negan couldn’t care less. The only thing he began to care about was where that guys eyes were wandering, and they weren’t wandering to him, they were wandering to the sleeping figure in his arms, sticking to her enough to let a certain annoyance grow in his body. “So, who are you?”, Negan grumbled, his eyes already narrowed as he finally got that fuckers glance away from his girl. “Your new guard”, the man said, letting out a small sigh before he rose his voice again, “They wanted to have Roger on the team for the windmill for the next few days. So for now, I’ll take his shifts over.” “Well, then hello new guard”, Negan said, his voice still drowsy and cold as his eyes wandered over the man’s face, trying to find out what was bothering him about it other than the fact that his glance was still switching obviously often and way more than he liked to his still thankfully sleeping girl. “Well, see you later then”, his guard said, shifting uneasily over the floor before he gave him quick nod and turned towards the door that lead upstairs, beginning to beat retreat. “Hey, what’s your name, boy?”, Negan asked just as he began to hear the dull footsteps sounding over the cement floor, before they came closer again until the blonde man was looking right at him again as he rose his voice. “Caleb.”
When they had told you about him after you had arrived in Alexandria, about this man they were locking up in the cell in the basement of one of the brownstone houses, you had expected to see a lot when you finally made your way down the staircase as his newly assigned guard. You had painted a picture in your head of him, through the horrific things you had heard over the last weeks and months that sounded almost as if they were grasped out of an old and scary tale people would tell children to scare them off from doing something silly. But you hadn’t expected the man you had actually found in the dark cell. You hadn’t expected to hear a voice as smooth as velvet but rough and raspy as a growing storm as well, that managed to combine those components into a deep drawl that had made you yearn to listen to it all day long. You hadn’t expected to see captivating eyes darting at you, see lips curled into a charming yet devilish grin that was surrounded by a salt and pepper beard, see dark hair that was stroked back, only with a few detached hair strands and locks darting away from its shape, see rough and handsome features adoring his face. You hadn’t expected to feel something pooling deeply within you whenever his tongue ran over his lower lip until it got captured in-between his pearly whites or whenever your eyes began to wander over the way the steel blue prison suit was hugging his broad shoulders and tall frame. You hadn’t expected to transform from silently guarding him to developing small talks with him, to begin to laugh at his jokes and the odd but entertaining humor he had, to dive deeper into the reasons why he had done the things he had done, to find out why his beloved bat, that was by now locked up in the armory instead of resting on his shoulder, was called ‘Lucille’. You hadn’t expected to tell him your deepest and darkest secrets as well, you hadn’t expected to feel him reaching through the metal bars to stroke and caress his large and rough hand over your arms and cheeks, surprisingly softly wiping away any tears when your feelings overwhelmed you. You hadn’t expected him to turn into the person you wanted to see first when you had something exciting to talk about or when the opposite was the case and you needed nothing but some comfort. You hadn’t expected that you would be the one he would want to share those things with too, no matter what it was. You hadn’t ever expected him to turn into anything else than the heartless monster the people outside had described him as. But most of all, you hadn’t expected to fall in love with the man in the cell.
• The first thing that does comes to Negan’s mind when it comes to helping you relax so you can finally fall asleep and get some rest is to help you with the special kind of magic his tongue and fingers can do in the wink of an eye to your body
• Him loving to hear your gasps and soft moans as soon as he slips in between your legs and pampers you as much as he can, no matter if its pressing soft but intoxicating kisses to sensitive skin of your inner things, sucking delicately on your sweet spots and your growing heat, letting you shake in pleasure with every flick of his tongue or letting you cum on his fingers as your whole body shakes in pleasure
• Even though he loves pulling you right after that into his arms and feel how you melt against him and dive off into a dovish slumber, him also absolutely not minding if you take it further after that, and he can pound highs into you until you’re both breathless and that exhausted that you’re falling into a deep sleep in each others arms,
• Often, when the main reason of your sleepless night is something that is haunting you and keeps trying to drown you in painful memories, him being also able to just pull you deeply into his embrace to comfort you and cradle you against his chest, either trying to cheer you up with his very own humor or just holding you tight while mumbling some soothing words into your hair until he feels you relax in his arms
• Him sometimes taking you out on the roof of the Sanctuary or on some of the rather abandoned platforms at the building’s side, just for you to catch some fresh air and maybe get rid of the thoughts that keep bothering you and keep you from sleeping
• It’s rather symbolic and to others it might doesn’t sound much, but knowing about Negan’s relationship to his beloved bat it’s more than just a big sign of deep affection when Negan moves Lucille at some times and especially when you’re having a particularly hard time, from his side of the bed to yours, not saying much but simply showing you with the glance in his eyes and the kiss he presses on your lips that he believes she might be able to give you the comfort she has often given to him before
• Him giving you back massages to loose you up, just to love to feel the way you melt beneath his large hands and to hear your little hums when his fingers run over your body until you’re so comfortable that you’re almost falling asleep
• Sometimes, him also just holding you and loosing you a little up with pampering your neck with kisses, running his large hands over your body, tracing his fingers over your skin and basically letting you use him as much as a pillow as you want to
• Knowing how much you love the sound of his deep voice, him using it in every kind of way to loose you up and help you get more comfortable and relaxed, with the range going from just talking some more about your day or murmuring some loving and soothing words into your ear, right up to making you cum only with his voice
• As soon as he feels you falling asleep in his arms, him actually being pretty proud of himself and loving the fact that he can make you feel not only relaxed but also that safe and protected that you can finally let your guards down and fall asleep, only for him feel more proud and happy as he feels you cuddling closer up to him in your sleep and hears your content hums vibrating against his skin
“Damn rain ruined our cookout”, you grumbled into Negan’s white shirt as you watched the raindrops splatter onto the metallic top of the grill that should have been by now home of sizzling steaks and sausages.
Instead you found yourself laying in Negan’s arms, leaned against his side on the porch swing, feeling its soft movements dangling the both of you while some lonely water drops of the summer rain made their way here and there towards your skin.
“Maybe that but not the whole fucking evening”, Negan mumbled into your hair before he leaned a little in to press a kiss on your forehead.
Just as you cuddled a little more up to him and felt his hand wandering over your legs that were swung over his, another bunch of raindrops splattered against the porch’s railing and bounced up into your direction.
Within the moment the drops hit the skin of your legs and Negan’s arms you could suddenly feel his lips forming into a big grin against your forehead.
“You know what, Baby? I got an idea”, he grumbled smirking, loosening his grasp on you before he let your legs slide off his lap, stood up and nodded towards the rain as he stretched one of his large hands out for you to take it.
“Let’s make this rain our damn bitch”, he chuckled with a wider grin, anticipation already spread all over his handsome features while your glance went for a short moment outside where the rain was falling in long, tight threads to the ground.
If you were honest, they did seem very tempting to your inner child.
“I mean, the rain’s gotta be warm and y’know I’ll make it fucking fun”, Negan chuckled before you glanced back at him and saw into is eyes that were filled with utter joy and excitement.
Within seconds he had persuaded you and made you slide your hands quickly into his large palm before you saw the grin on his face widening as he grasped your hand tighter and helped you with ease up.
Just moments later you found yourself standing in the warm summer rain, feeling it falling on your skin and pelting down onto your clothes as it let the light fabric cling to your body within seconds before Negan’s warm hand was slowly leaving yours.
Before you had fully recognized him slipping from your side you suddenly felt large splashes of water hitting your skin, letting your glance snap up only to look into to the roguish, almost devilish amused, face of Negan who had one of his feet buried in a puddle of rainwater and didn’t wait another second to let it snap up again to hit you with the next splash.
“Oh you asshole”, you called indignantly but laughing out, looking wide eyed at him while a booming and throaty laughter mumbled through his broad chest. “Ah come on, you else never fucking complain when I spurt on you”, Negan chuckled as some wet strand of his dark hair detached from their slicked back state and fell into his face while the smirk on his face grew wider.
You let out a chuckling groan, shaking your head playfully about him before you felt another splash hitting your skin and letting you flinch up.
And even though the way Negan’s wet clothes clung to his body, the way he stroke his dark and wet hair with a wide grin on his lips back and the way the raindrops ran down his skin almost caught all of your attention for a moment, the revenge thoughts quickly got it back.
“Just you wait!”, you called snickering out through the rain that kept pelting with small thuds onto the earthy and grassy ground while Negan rose his eyebrows and let his tongue run teasingly over his lower lip as if he wanted to spur you even more on.
Giving him one last grin you turned around and paced over to the small flower field at the hedge, already seeing the watering can lingering by its side that had filled itself with rainwater by now.
“Oh hell no”, you heard Negan call from somewhere behind you, catching on about what you were heading for while it just made you run faster as Negan’s splashing footsteps sounded closer and closer through to you.
More laughs left your lips as made your way closer to the watering can but almost tripped on the slippery grass before you finally grabbed the green can and turned as fast around as its weight allowed you to.
Catching Negan just a few feet away from you, you heft the can more up, wrapped your hands around its end before pushing it away from you, letting the water rush out of its larger opening in a big splash right against his tall frame.
“Holy Fuck!”, he called out as the water hit his face and his broad shoulders, soaking his shirt even more than it already was before his eyes darted right at you again as he stroke another bunch of wet hair strand out of his face.
“Ya better run”, Negan said lowly, smirking wolfishly as he was already beginning to take some teasingly slow steps towards you in the pelting rain before suddenly letting his arms and hands shot towards you, trying to grasp you as you jumped back as new laughter erupted both of your bodies.
Feeling how more and more raindrops ran down your skin and the water of the ground splattered against your legs with each fast step you took, you ran faster, trying to outrun Negan who was already on his way to you, coming closer and closer with each of his large steps.
“You won’t get me”, you called out, already breathing heavily as more chuckles left your lips before you suddenly felt his fingers trying to grasp your waist.
A gasp left your lips as soon as his fingers tightened, his large hands cupped your sides before he stopped you completely by wrapping his strong arms around you and pulling you against his firm and wet chest.
“Gotcha”, Negan drawled as his hot breath vibrated against your ear and his arms tightened a little more around your body.
“And you can bet your sweet ass on that I won’t fucking let you go again”, he chuckled, his wet and warm lips pressing in against your jaw and down your neck before he let his teeth tug softly on the sensitive skin of your neck.
“You’re just afraid you’re gonna get another load of water”, you chuckled, turning around in his arms to face him as he leaned closer in to you.
A wet hair strand fell into his face while more rain drops got caught in his salt and pepper beard before his grin grew even wider, “The only fucking one who’s gonna get a damn load is you”, he chuckled lowly against your lips before he quickly captured them and pulled you in a deep kiss.
Almost as if the rain was melting the both of you into each other you stood in the middle of the garden, slinging your arms around his neck and burying your fingers in his tousled hair, while Negan pressed your body closer against his as deep growls rumbled through his chest and vibrated in an intoxicating rhythm against you.
Almost breathless you let go of each other, his lips hovering still closely above yours before another chuckle wandered up his throat as he leaned in to give your lips another peck.
“Now lets get inside”, he murmured with his deep drawling voice against your wet skin, “Gotta peel that wet shit off of you…unless you wanna fuck in the rain?”
With a thick knot in your stomach and a heartbeat that was speeding up with each passing second, you left Negan’s patient room and followed Rick towards the infirmary’s large kitchen. With each step you were catching up on his heavy footsteps, feeling as if he was leading you like a lamb to the slaughter even though he had just asked you for a talk. A talk for the very first time in a while and a goddamn talk after the tension between the both of you hadn’t ebbed away, not even closely. He was still looking at you the very same way as he had when he had found out about your relationship to Negan, so now your mind and body tried to prepare for whatever he was about to throw at you while thousands of questions buzzed through your head uncountable bees in a busy hive.
By now, you could hear Siddiq roaming around in the kitchen, grabbing meds out of drawers that were originally supposed to carry cooking utensils while the sound of whatever he was doing in these moments echoed horribly through your head.
Sooner than you liked you found yourself standing in the kitchen, leaning against one of the wooden counters while Rick stood just a few feet away from you, sinking his fingers into the brunette curls at the back of his head as he was letting out a sigh. For a short moment, your eyes wandered to Siddiq, eyeing the old brown leather bag you hadn’t seen him use before while the name that was scribbled onto it’s side with a black sharpie, just like the special meds inside let a another shudder run through you. ‘Maggie’ was written on the bleached out part at the bag’s edge and meds just as vitamins that could be used for the last bit of her pregnancy and the eventual birth were sorted into its inside. You knew it couldn’t be too long anymore, just as you knew that Siddiq would leave Alexandria a little earlier than the estimated birthdate to make sure everything was fine. So the fact that he was now already packing the bag to make sure he had everything for whenever this time would be was surprising you less than Rick turning up at your doorstep. “You need me to go?”, you suddenly heard Siddiq ask, ripping you away from your thoughts of Maggie and back into your nervousness about Rick as he looked up from one of the drawers and made the leader’s glance dart at him. “No, no, it’s fine”, he just said giving you a small bit of hope that this talk wouldn’t turn into just another fight before the way his blue orbs wandered over to you quickly let your stomach drop again. “Well, I wanted to ask you for something”, Rick said, letting the astonishment in your body grow as you slowly rose your brows and waited for him to continue. “Now that…Negan”, he spoke the name out as if keeping it in his mouth any longer would poison him, “is doing better…I’d like to have you working outside. We can need every helping hand…so after everything…yours too.” With that he stopped and looked at you, into your eyes that darted with even bigger astonishment than before at him. You knew that they needed help, that Alexandria was trying hard to recover, still you hadn’t thought of him asking you for your help, not after your last encounter. Hell, you had expected him to throw anything at you when he had stood in the doorframe of Negan’s room. Anything but this. “If it’s okay, she could accompany me”, you suddenly heard Siddiq rip you out of the surprised trance you had been floating in over the last seconds. “I’ve been having a lot work lately, from small stuff to bigger wounds and by now I got the feeling she knows more about the meds we got here than me”, Siddiq added with a sympathetic chuckle, referring to the uncountable times you had sorted tablets and salves in and out, had helped him treating and changing Negan’s bandages and had him teach you one or the other thing that could be helpful, adding onto the bit Hershel had taught you such a long time ago. You were still swinging somewhere between astonishment and surprise as some relief sneaked into your body, slowly settling in as you began to realize that this could be a first step into a better direction, maybe into finally becoming a part of all of this again. Just as Negan shot into your mind along with the fact that you had to leave him alone to fulfill Rick’s plea the relief got poked by some guilt. But before you could even think about it any more you heard Rick’s voice ripping you out of your thoughts. “Good idea but I need her somewhere else, the crops or the wall maybe”, Rick said, something swinging in his voice you couldn’t fully recognize along with its pressed and a little too fast pace. “So what do you say?…Could be a new beginning”, Rick asked, as his eyes were like glued on you again while this last part made a rush of hope rush through your body even though you were still feeling overwhelmed and a little confused. Sure, Rick was clenching his jaw, his nostrils were trembling a bit and the muscles in his cheek were twitching slightly like they always did when he was tensed up but for a situation like this, a situation after your last arguement…not nearly as much as you had thought. Rick’s brows perked up as he looked at you, and just as your eyes met his again you knew that you had to take this opportunity if you wanted things to become better, even if you just wanted to not let them become worse. Hell, after all, you had waited for some kind of possibility this whole time so now, you needed to take it or you wouldn’t just be a hypocrite, you’d lose the last bit of hope for a new start too. So you pushed your guilt away, told yourself that Siddiq would take good care of Negan, as well as that Negan wouldn’t want you to pass on a chance like this and with that, you gave Rick a nod. “I’m in”, you told him, seeing him responding with a nod as well while a small smile began to form on your lips as you began to realize that this was real just before you could hear Rick clearing his throat. “Alright, then I’ll see you tomorrow morning at 9 am at my house.”
Still feeling as if you were half-way stuck in a trance you found yourself sitting not too much later at the edge of Negan’s bed just seconds after you had told him about everything that had happened in the kitchen. And while you had talked, you had seen the worry that had plastered all over his face when you had rushed into the room being mostly replaced with relief. But still, you could see in his eyes that a bit concern was left and it didn’t surprise you just remembering the way you had laid sobbing in his arms after the last and only time you had been outside this house and had encountered a whole lot of them in the worst way possible. “If he’d riled you up and made you cry, I fucking swear I’d climbed out of this goddamn shitbed and ripped him a fucking new one”, Negan grumbled reaching towards your hand to let his fingertips run over your knuckles while his jaw tensed slightly. You looked softly at him, having to give him a tiny smile caused by his protectiveness before you curled your fingers around his to reassure him a little, “It wasn’t just him this last time…was just the cherry on the top”, you mumbled, catching his hazel eyes as they glanced up. Back then, you had been mad – furious at Rick for what he had done while you were gone, for taking Lucille and for the chains he had put on Negan that were now gladly gone, but it had been a bit since then and even though the stubbornness in your body protested a little, you couldn’t pass on any chances. “I know he’s just asking for my help to work…but it’s a start”, you mumbled, letting your smile grow a little as you shifted a bit on the mattress. “Yeah…now I’m glad Rick’s swallowing whatever shit he’s got stirring in his damn skull, still…take care, alright? Don’t let any of those angry fuckers get you down”, he mumbled while you could see in the way he was glancing at you that didn’t trust Rick’s offer all the way yet. “I won’t”, you mumbled, giving him another small smile before you exhaled softly as you heft yourself a little up to climb next to him into the bed, feeling how he was wrapping his arms around you as soon as you huddled up to him. His scent quickly engulfed you as you nuzzled your nose into the warm skin of his neck and hummed quietly in approval as soon as his lips pressed a kiss on your temple while you hoped that as soon as you’d close your eyes, this new start wouldn’t turn out as just a dream that splattered like an air bubble.
“Feelin’ fine?”, you heard Negan ask the next morning, careful and still a little concerned as he had just gulped down another spoon full of his oatmeal and was eyeing your face, taking care of that he could catch any of your reactions. “Yeah”, you mumbled, shifting on your chair and letting the wide end of your spoon sink into the thick mixture as you looked into his hazel eyes, “Just a little nervous, that’s all.” You gave him a small smile, and neither it nor your words were a lie. Sure, there was still the fear about the reactions of your old friends and anybody else who was working out there which was the source of the nervousness that streamed through your body and made your hands clammy, but the fact that this might be a promising offer kept it in rein. Your glance wandered to the digital clock on Negan’s nightstand, on which the digitals formed again and again into the next one and diminished the time that was left until you had to make your way towards Rick’s house that was after all, your old home too. And just as another two digits changed and the clock turned into 08:50 you felt Negan’s hand moving over your legs that were hooked over his until he could squeeze your thigh softly. “You’ll carry this crap off, Baby. I fucking know it. You’ll rock the crops or the damn wall or what-fucking-ever”, Negan chuckled softly, winking uplifting at you as he was giving your thigh another squeeze with his large warm palm and was choking his own concern back. “Thanks”, you mumbled, giving him a loving smile before your eyes darted at the clock on which the digits changed faster than you liked. “Want me to pump some special luck into you?”, Negan asked lowly but still with a chuckle as he got your glance back to him, letting you look into his roguish and wolfish eyes as he perked his eyebrows with a wide grin on his lips up. Snickering, you swung your legs off his and shifted off the chair. “I’d love you to do that but I gotta go…don’t wanna be too late on the first day”, you said, giving Negan a small grin as you leaned down to him and cupped his jaw to caress your lips over his. A low growl travelled up his throat as he sat the bowl in his hands aside to pull you a little closer while his salt and pepper beard tickled your fingertips and the sensitive skin of your face before you slowly let go of him. “See you this evening….at the latest”, you mumbled against his lips before pressing another quick peck on his lips before you suddenly felt a little guilt washing back up. “Don’t you worry your sweet ass off for me, I’ll pass my time, too”, he mumbled with a smirk spread over his handsome features as he must have caught the way you had tensed at the sound of your own words. “Might gonna spend some quality time with my dick”, Negan grumbled with a throaty chuckle before you let a laugh vibrate against his lips and shoved his chest playfully, “Or get my ass to begin that book you brought me from home.” He grinned wider as he quirked an eyebrow at you as you leaned in to press your lips once more on his lips before you eventually made your way outside.
The sun was already shining brightly as you made your way down the road, catching how more and more people streamed over Alexandria’s streets and found their proper place to work. You were tensing, this awful feeling that your lungs were pressed more and more in was spreading over your ribcage while the house got closer and closer until you stood eventually right in front of it. It was one of the homes that had fully survived the flames and for a short moment you remembered the night you had stood in front of it, surrounded by the fire of other houses, right after you had helped Carl, right before Negan had beaten the man to death who had left you with bleeding wounds and dark bruises for doing so. A shudder ran down your spine just thinking about those moments that almost made you feel the stinging of your injuries and the biting heat of the flames again. Taking a deep breath you stumbled up the stairs, your clammy hands pressing onto the fabric of your pants before your eyes caught something in the corner of the porch that hadn’t been there before. Two handprints in dried blue paint, a small and a bigger one. Just as your mind began to grasp whose handprints that had to be, the small one that fitted to a toddler and the other that could fit to someone older, but still far from fully grown, a harsh shudder ran through you and the squeaking sound of a door made your glance shot up. Rick’s blue eyes darted at you as he stood in the door way, glancing at you while you felt a little bit like a helpless first grader waiting for the teacher to guide you into the class. “Hey”, you just mumbled, glancing inside at the clock on the wall that had just pointed at the black 9 on the clock face. “Guess we’ll get going then”, Rick said with a quick nod, a little tensed as well before he made a quick hand gesture down the porch.
Moments later you found yourself walking with Rick down the street, here and there you could catch some eye pairs glancing at the strange view of the both of you together. “You’ll work at the crops, digging up some soil and planting the vegetables we can grow right now”, Rick mumbled, his glance still darting right into what laid in front of him instead of you. You just mumbled an “Okay” back along with a small nod as he lead you further away from the infirmary and his home, along houses that were being rebuild, other crops and small and newly dug up fields where people were already working on growing new supplies. Just as you got closer to the plain opposite of where you had started and walked into the direction of the older parts of the wall, that were already a little rusted and would probably get within the next months renewed to build Alexandria bigger and stronger, your eyes caught another field. A big part of it was already dug up, another bit of it was still nothing but dirt and grass that was marked off with a red cord while five people were pacing over the field. “Almost there”, Rick mumbled as you walked closer, giving you the possibility to get a closer look at who you were about to work with. Two men and a woman were digging up the soil within the marked part, another man and a girl, maybe around four or fifteen, were crouching down to prepare seeds to be planted. Rick was a step ahead, pointing at the digging three as you still walked over the road ,”Might recognize their faces. They got from the Hilltop here to help. From left to right, Seth, Molly and Rob.” Rick’s finger wandered over them, from the tall, light brown haired man who seemed to be in his late thirties, to the short and sturdy woman who must be in her late twenties or early thirties and then to the slim and auburn haired man who had to be about the same age as the woman. You gave him a nod, right before he gestured to the two who were crouching on the ground and who both hadn’t caught Rick nor you yet. “They’re from the kingdom…that’s Caleb and the girl’s Eden”, Rick mumbled, nodding towards the both of them. The man was just picking up his small shovel to dug a little deeper into the soil as his glance went up to capture you and Rick. He was probably in his mid-twenties, his short, ash blonde hair was already a bit tousled from the work while some glaucous eyes wandered over you as his eyebrows puckered slightly, as if he was pondering for a moment.
The girl, Eden, was looking for a short moment up as well, but instead like the young man she just clenched her jaw for a few seconds before she quickly glanced back to the ground. Your eyes stayed stuck on her for some small moments, glancing over her face, over the undeniable resemblance and the long blonde hair that was just a bunch of shades lighter than the young man’s which made you quickly realize that both of them must be siblings. ”Thought you could help Caleb and Eden with the planting”, Rick mumbled while your eyes wandered over the field as the young man’s were darting back to the ground again. “They already know you’ll join them. So Caleb’s gonna induct you in everything else you need to know”, Rick began to say, dryly and clenching his jaw again before you looked for the first time since you had left the house into his eyes. “Okay”, you mumbled, feeling the nervousness beginning to sneak up into you again before you already saw him turning into the direction you had come from. Still you felt a bit like that schoolgirl, not really sure how to behave, but before you could decide how you’d do that towards your old friend, he took the decision from you as he gave you a nod and made his way back down the street. Gulping, you glanced at the workers while a small part of you was glad that none of them were one of your old friends even though you exactly knew that these five probably weren’t be too happy to work with you as well. War’s end or not, their thoughts about Negan couldn’t have changed much. And same would most likely count for the person by his side. So was it now your turn to shift those thoughts? At least about you?
With a deep breath you began to stroll over to Caleb, feeling the restlessness in your body grow while you were still figuring a way out how to properly act. Just as you stood a few feet away from him, his eyes darted up at you and before you could press out a “Hello” or anything else, he quickly got on his feet, smeared the dirt a bit off his hands and onto his jeans just to stretch a hand out to you. “Hey, I’m Caleb”, he said, giving you a slight but still friendly smile that perplexed you for the very first seconds. That on his face wasn’t Rick’s work, he had given you this job but you couldn’t think of him explicitly telling them to be nice to you. No, this guy was actually just being kind and just as you realized it you tried to get rid of your own clammy hands and gave his a small squeeze before you finally got yourself to raise your voice. “Hi, Rick just told me about you”, you said, pressing a small smile into the corners of your lips, “(Y/N).” “Yeah, I know”, he said, still with that friendly smile that you hadn’t expected from any one here in Alexandria towards you, but as much as it surprised you as much made it loose you a little up. “Okay, think we’ll get to introduce you to our work now, right?”
After the next while you were a lot smarter about what was going on at your new workplace, got to know that they were mostly trying to plant kale and tomatoes at the moment, just to have, especially with the former, vegetables that could mostly grow all year long. You got to know where the big metallic box with the tools you needed stood that got used by some other people at different crop fields as well and had already been the source of some drama when some shovels had mysteriously disappeared and then one day later just as mysteriously reappeared. You got to know the way they liked to work and plant the seeds and seedlings they had transported from the Hilltop over to Alexandria and while Caleb stayed as friendly as he had been at your welcoming, the other four, including his sister, kept their distance most of the times. They weren’t rude and not nearly as passive or even openly aggressive like some of your old friends had been around you, but rather reserved and while you weren’t gonna hold that against them, you definitely preferred Caleb’s openness. “Seemed surprised earlier”, you heard Caleb say as he dug into the soil and shoveled deeper into the dirt before his glaucous eyes wandered up to you while you had just planted your first Hilltop plant into the earth. You swallowed slightly, not sure what to say as your glance met his, “Just isn’t the reaction I mostly get when I meet people around here”, you mumbled, letting out an uneasy chuckle before you caught him shrugging his shoulders slightly. “War’s over, we don’t have that peace for nothing…now I don’t know everything but I heard Michonne say you wanted it to stop so…”, he grumbled, digging with his hands into the earth before he looked back up at you, “And every-…at least most people deserve another chance.” His eyes were darting at you, before you gave him another small but thankful smile and got back to the plant in front of you, grabbing your small shovel just as you heard his voice again. “Talking about second chances, huh?”, Caleb said as he made your glance wander up to him, watching him nodding over to the tool box and a person you hadn’t even thought you’d see again. Your lips began to gape slightly open, the shovel loosened itself out of your grasp and fell with a dull thud into the dirt as your eyes wandered over the woman, as if they wanted to make sure that she wasn’t just a mirage. But she wasn’t, the a bit too sharp hair cut was still the same, the clothes were changed from the cloak to some jeans and a plaid shirt and the blonde was just a bit more grown out than before, revealing more of the brunette roots. Jadis. You gulped, not able to get your eyes off the woman as your only real encounter with her flashed in front of your eyes. The fight, right after you had seen Negan and Rick almost killing one another in a burning and walker infested building, right after you had been with them in this burning hell, right after you had fallen with Negan through the glass window and had ended up injured but differently to Negan conscious on the blacktop of an alley. Right as you had tried with all might to protect Negan from her, tried to keep her from taking him, tried to unsuccessfully tell her that her group’s massacre hadn’t been his but Simon’s fault, tried to use Negan’s beloved bat to win against her while you were fighting a whole other battle with the unconsciousness that wanted to drag you into its depths. And it had won along with her, she had taken him away from you that day. When you had found him back, alive and along with Lucille strolling through her junkyard, you had pretty quickly found out that Negan hadn’t killed her, not even after what she had tried to do to Lucille. He seemed to rather pity her, felt on top of that guilty to have trusted Simon just to be betrayed that greatly and with that, you weren’t feeling the urge right now to go for her jugular. Still, it was odd to see her now, here in Alexandria after all. But maybe that was the way others were seeing you too.
”Surprised again?”, Caleb asked as he for the first time managed to get your eyes off of her again,”I was too, after everything that has happened between her and Rick-” He shrugged his shoulders slightly as his eyes darted for a moment to the plant in his hands before they wandered back up to Jadis. ”But Anne’s been doing a good job as far as I know-” ”Anne?”, you asked as he trailed off in response to your puckered brows. ”Yeah, Anne. Got no idea where she got that ‘Jadis’ thing from but apparently the one now’s her real name”, Caleb mumbled, shoveling some soil around the thin roots while you gave him a small nod. ”Either way, eyery hand can help and as I said…she seems to do a good job and for now, that’s the only thing that counts, right?”, Caleb added, while he put his attention back to the work right in front of him. ”Yeah”, you just mumbled back, feeling how your glance began to wander back up to the large tool box just to suddenly meet a pair of dark eyes that darted astounded right back at you. Just like you had been looking at her moments ago, she was now looking at you, with slightly widened eyes and lips that were gaping surprised open right before she seemed to force herself to rally her mind again. Gulping she looked away, grabbing a small rake before she quickly made her way back towards where she had come from, leaving you still a little wondering.
And after Jadis or Anne or whatever she was really called had left, Caleb kept on talking a little here and there with you, in between shoveling deeper into the soil and planting new vegetables, all while the others mostly stayed focussed on their work and the talks they already had with one another. And with each hour that passed in the warmly shining sun, you were finding more things out that made you feel like you had truly been living in a bubble for the last weeks, shielded from any information that considered the past, the present and maybe even the future. Morgan was gone, not dead, but gone. First he had lived at the junkyard, apart from people to find himself again, then, despite Rick and others trying to persuade him otherwise, he had left into the unknown without telling anybody where he was going or when – if he was coming back. Another thing were the missing people you noticed, the ones that had died during the battles and of whose faiths you hadn’t known about till now, except for Eric’s. Tobin and Francine were just a few of the names that made you gulp harshly and clench your jaw when you thought about the fact that they hadn’t died because of the dead, but because of a goddamn war. There were new people as well, or at least people new to Alexandria that had been transferred here from other communities to help rebuilding the Safe Zone. A few of them had been residents of the Hilltop whose faces you could recognize here just as you had done it with Seth, Molly and Rob’s, others were completely unknown like Caleb and Eden. Next to the new people, there was newly achieved knowledge too, from a book the Hilltop had been given by another small group which contained all kinds of instructions for windmills, water pumps and anything else a community needed to someday fully function on its own. The story about how they got it was almost a little too strange to actually believe, but after all and after how much you had heard this book could help, it seemed to have been worth it. And next to all this, you were sure there was more you were about to discover, step by step.
The sun made its journey over the sky above you while hour after hour passed and the day at the crops began to leave its marks on you. Your back and knees were aching slightly from bending over the soil and shifting over the earthy ground, and while you inwardly cursed the hell out of it, a tiny part of you was in an odd way glad about feeling like you had done something. Your hands were still stained with the dark brown earth as you began to collect your tools shortly after Seth had called out that it was quitting time for today. Caleb was at the other side of the field, talking to his younger sister and Rob, while Seth and Molly were collecting the empty food cans you had eaten in your short break as you began to shove the small rakes and shovels into your arms before you got yourself with a small but strained groan back on your feet. Your fingers laced around the handles, making sure that you wouldn’t let everything fall within the next seconds while a small smile began to grow on your lips as your mind wandered to the fact that it was just a bit left until you could go back to your transitory-home and Negan. After all, he had been for the last weeks in the infirmary and even for the bunch of months before as good as always been around you, so not seeing him all day long let your longing for him grow and made you look forward to the moment you could walk back into the infirmary. Still with the small smile on your lips and with your eyes stuck to the tools in your arms you began to stroll in the direction of the metal box, keeping yourself from stumbling over the uneven ground before your eyes went up to the metallic box that was glistening in the warm light. And just as your eyes got a little dazzled by the reflecting beams you caught the person standing next to it who just began to drop a little rake along with other tools into the box. The moment your eyes caught the sharp hair cut again your feet stopped walking while your mind was already beginning to rush, troubled with the question of what to do if you didn’t want to have this all to end up awkward as hell. You couldn’t go back to the crops, if, and you were sure that she’d notice, it wouldn’t only make it more awkward, it would make you feel cowardish too. So even though you wished you would have just kept kneeling a little longer on the ground, you began to make your way towards her and the box, keeping an eye on the tools in your arms while you could feel how her glance began to capture you as the clicking sound of dropping metal echoed through your head. A tight breath left your lips as you reached the box, catching how her earth stained hands were sorting more tools into its inside. And just as you began to loose your grasp on the ones in your arms as they were beginning to dig uncomfortably into your skin, you suddenly heard how she uneasily cleared her throat and rose her voice. “Heard he killed him…Simon”, she mumbled, leaving you for a short moment astounded as your eyes got lead by the sound of her voice up to her face and met her eyes for a split second. Slowly, you began to nod, your eyes pacing in between her and the tools as you were trying to estimate her more with every passing second, “Yeah…he did.” For a short moment, she stayed quiet, the corners of your eyes only caught how she gave you a small nod as well while only the sound of the clinking metal on one another and the dull voices of the people around you sounded through to you. “That it had been his…Simon’s decision to murde-”, she began again, her voice breaking shaking off as she couldn’t even finish the last word before she took a sharp breath and looked hesitantly at you ,”…that’s what you were trying to tell me, right?” When you punched me to the ground and pressed your shoe’s sole into my face? Yes, I tried. You gulped down your first thought, knowing that after all, she had just lost everything. That she refused to let someone from the other side, who’s crouched whimpering but still protectively over the alleged enemy and murder, talk to her wasn’t a big surprise. And as much as you didn’t like to admit it, every one would, you included. “Yeah”, you ended up to just mumble back while you caught her giving you another nod before the last one of her tools landed with the dull thud in the box. With a tight breath falling from her lips, her hands found the box’s side, her fingertips pressing against the dirty metal as if she was searching for some support. “Sorry”, you suddenly heard her say, quietly but clear, before this one word made you look up into her eyes that were even though they were holding a glance you couldn’t fully recognize, genuine. “Sorry ‘bout your people too”, you said back after a few quiet seconds, feeling like you couldn’t leave the obvious hanging in the air. She just gave you another small nod as her eyes went down, filling with some sadness before she cleared her throat once again. “See you around”, she mumbled awkwardly as she was glancing up at you for a small second before loosening her hold on the metal and leaving you standing there, with the last tools in your arms and still astounded that you had just talked to her.
The proceeding evening sun was turning everything in even warmer colors as you found yourself walking up to the infirmary’s front door whose white surface got drowned into a bright shade of orange. Smearing the last bit of dirt off your hands on your now brownish looking pants you grabbed the doors handle and pushed it open, letting you slip inside before you closed it with a small thud behind yourself. “I’m back”, you called out, trying to find out if Siddiq was still working only to hear the familiar voice calling back that brought a pleasant warmth into your aching body. “Fuck yes!”, you heard Negan call back with a loud and throaty chuckle as your cheeks began to gleam in anticipation and your feet were carrying you through the kitchen and the hallways, leaving swift footsteps behind that sounded over the wooden floorboards. Chuckling quietly you let your foot nudge against the edge of his door that was just off the latch before it opened and revealed Negan leaning against the backrest of his patient bed, grinning widely at you while something very familiar was gone. “You’ve shaved”, you said surprised as you looked into his eyes and saw his lips widening that were no longer surrounded by the salt and pepper beard. “Well, ‘hello’ to you too”, Negan chuckled, running a hand over his clean shaved cheek as you began to walk over to his bed’s side. “Surprised, huh? Had to get that shit off before it could run wild”, he said smirking as one of his hands reached up to your hip. “Really? I liked it”, you chuckled as you already saw him perking his dark brows up. “Better than clean fucking shaven? Don’t tell me you don’t like it, getting that shit off was hard as fuck…had to take care that I wasn’t getting those damn bandaids wet…I bet Doc would’ve killed me otherwise”, Negan snickered teasingly. “No, I like that just as much. The work was worth it”, you chuckled, before you leaned down to him to press your lips on his, letting them caress over the familiar lips and the unusual smoothness of his face’s skin you hadn’t felt till now and which was replacing the tickling of the beard. Humming contently into the kiss you felt him pulling you a little closer while the hunger you had build up for him over the day got slowly satisfied. “Come here”, Negan grumbled against your lips as soon as you’d let a little go of him to catch your breath. “Nah I have to shower first, I got earth all over me”, you grumbled as you looked down on your stained pants and shirt, “I’m too dirty.” Just as you had spoken out the last few words you let out a small groan as you heard Negan’s throaty chuckle and saw him grinning widely at you. “Oh, you can’t be too damn dirty for me”, he teased lowly, running his tongue over his lower lips before another chuckle rumbled through his chest as you playfully nudged his arm. “I’ll be right back, and then I’ll have some surprises for you too.”
A bit later, after you had washed the soil off your skin and had pulled some clean clothes for the evening and the night over, you sat on the chair next to Negan’s bed, your legs swung over his like usual while you ate the last bites of your sandwich and finished to tell him about the last bit of your day, including all the surprises you’ve had. From Jadis or Anne – you still weren’t too sure what to call her – to the people you worked with, Negan was being curious about everything you had done all day. He had been just as surprised as you about the fact that she had decided to live here after all, had been more than glad that you didn’t have another awful or painful encounter with anybody outside even though you could tell by the way he was now clenching his jaw slightly that he was at least a bit suspicious of Caleb and his friendliness. “I just fucking want you to be okay, that’s why”, Negan said, running his fingers over your legs as he had seen the way your brows had rose slightly in response to his glance. “I know”, you said back, watching how his glance was focused on his tracing fingers while you knew that next to the concern there was a tiny bit that was poking his jealously vein. He glanced up at you as you stayed silent for a moment, his eyes wandering over your face before he gulped as he seemed to try to read your thoughts off your expression. Clenching his jaw slightly, you could tell that he was pondering, probably cursing the hell out of himself before his hazel eyes found yours. “I’m not jealous of that guy. I’m damn happy for you, I really fucking am”, he finally said, referring to what hung unspoken in the air while even though he was denying it for your sake and you truly believed him that he was more than happy for you, a part of the sound in his voice and his glance backstabbed him regarding the jealousy, no matter how small he was trying to keep it. Setting the plate that was laying in your lap aside you gave him a soft smile before you a small strained breath left your lips as you heft yourself up from the chair and climbed next to him into the bed. “I know”, you said again, leaning in to peck his lips before you smiled at him as you pressed another kiss against his clean shaven cheek,“There wouldn’t be a reason to either way.”
Feeling how Negan tucked you in beneath the blanket along with him, you cuddled closer up, laid your head into the curve of his neck and let your hand rest on his slowly rising and falling chest. A small yawn left your lips as you could feel the work of the day urging your body to pay the price while Negan leaned his head against yours and let his lips press a soft kiss on your forehead. “Maybe I can make you some spaghetti someday with those tomatoes I’ve planted”, you chuckled quietly, nuzzling your nose into the warmth of his neck as his lips grew into a soft smile before you suddenly felt it hush as he was tensing a little while your mind began to replay your words that suddenly began to look different as you thought about them once more. Someday, someday when he was in prison, someday when he wasn’t able to cook for you, nor to do anything with you outside his cell. You gulped by the thought while you began to inwardly curse yourself as more suspense began to build up in you. Both of you knew that this day would come on which he would be locked away and it ached inside you just giving it a single thought, just like it did with the pictures your mind was making up as soon as it was swinging towards the cold cell. You both weren’t actually talking about it, rather trying to blend it out to use the time he still had outside but you knew that it had a limit. Two more weeks, that was what Siddiq had said would it take till Negan was fit again and enough healed to be recovered enough for what he had diplomatically called ‘the next step’. Two weeks and while that was still a bit, it didn’t feel like enough. Probably nothing would when you knew what was coming after, even though there was a part of you that was simply glad that Negan was properly recovering. It was a goddamn double edged sword. “I’m fucking sure you will”, Negan mumbled, his deep voice was soft as he leaned in to press a gentle kiss on your forehead, almost as if he was urging himself to think positive, also for you. Just as you felt like some guilt poking you again you could feel a small grin of his growing against your skin. “But you won’t beat mine. I can tell you that. No one beats my spaghetti”, Negan teased with a small chuckle that made you loose up again ,”Not even my girl.”
Days began to pass, you continued your work at the crops and for once everything seemed to become better. While Caleb stayed as friendly as before, the other four were still reserved and kept their distance but you felt like they were loosening a tiny bit up, at a slow, even glacial pace, but it was better than you had dared to wish for at the very beginning. There were some small lows in between whenever Tara or Rosita passed the field and cold glances were shot your way and while they hurt as much as before, they were outweighed by the hope that you might were able to make something better out of your chance, if not with them, then at least with the others of your old friends. Negan made some progress as well, he got stronger again, could walk some more on his own, the wounds healed a little more and while Siddiq was glad about the course Negan’s recovery was taking, he still made sure to tell each of you to soft-pedal since his full recuperation would still take a bit. After all, the wounds still weren’t as healed as he liked and Negan’s body’s new won strength could still swing quickly into the weakness again if he was overburdening himself just a little too much.
Almost a week had gone by as you found yourself kneeling on the soil again while the sun was on its way closer to the skyline of the trees and your body was marked by the hours you had already spent on the field this day. Your eyes were focused on the seedling in front of you, on the small shovel in your hands while you heard how Caleb strolled over the field and eventually let himself fall next to you again, groaned slightly in response to his aching knees that hit the ground before he bent himself over the dark soil again. The sudden roaring of truck engines made your glance snap up for a moment that was that loud that you could even hear it at the field that was a good bit off the gates before you caught how Caleb looked up for a moment. “They’re going on a run?”, you asked, puckering your brows slightly in response to the zooming sounds that began to quickly depart before Caleb shook his head as his glaucous orbs darted at you. “You haven’t heard yet? That thing’s spreading out like a wildfire around here ”, he asked, raising his brows as he shifted a little over the soil while you were already shaking your head, confused by his question. “The Hilltop got in touch with Rick, not even a half hour ago. Maggie gets closer to giving birth with each day and as much as Eden told me, she asked Siddiq to come over. Don’t know if she had some trouble or something, but to be honest I was already surprised that she didn’t call earlier…it’s a good bit till the due date but you can never know, right?”, Caleb asked, his eyes back at the seedling while your mind already swung in a state of trance from the moment on he had mentioned Siddiq’s name. Sure, he had been prepared, the leather bag with her name written on the rugged fabric, the small calendar you had seen him fill out with the possible birth date and you had known that he could go any day, but still, that he was gone now whirled up a whole new set of questions. Not only if Maggie and the kid were okay, also now that Siddiq was gone, who was with Negan? After all, Rick wouldn’t leave him unattended, not even if he would chain him to the bed again, no matter if it was a simple fact that Negan wouldn’t make it far with his body that still needed to become stronger. So did they put a guard in front of the infirmary? Pondering you stared at the ground for a few moments, knowing that you had to wait at least an hour, if not more until it was quitting time and you could find out, till then, all you could do was keep yourself occupied with the seedlings that wanted to sink into the earth to your knees.
The next while felt longer than you liked, each minute seemed to stretch out before you could finally leave the crops behind yourself. The questions had kept bouncing around in your head even though you had been able to keep your mind occupied with work. You found yourself strolling over the streets, passing people who were just finishing their work or were chatting about whats-o-ever, while you began to blend out everything around you and focused on getting to the infirmary. As you were coming closer to the house your eyes were already wandering over to the door and the windows, trying to find a guard or at least someone rummaging around in the kitchen. But you found no one, instead you walked like always into the house that was engulfed in an utter silence that made an uncomfortable tension in you rise. Your footsteps sounded dull over the wooden floorboards and just as you wanted to call out that you were back home, expecting that Negan would call back as always your eyes captured a note laying on the counter of the kitchen. Quickly you paced towards it, your eyes already trying to catch what was written on it before you had even reached the counter until you finally stood in front of it and let your glance slide over the hastily and messily written words. “Sorry I couldn’t say goodbye. Happened pretty fast. I know you know how to go on with Negan’s wounds. I’ll leave you in charge of that. I’m counting on you. I’ll stay in contact with Rick for the rest. See you!”
Your eyes rushed over the words once more, leaving you for a moment standing still by the counter while the sentences rushed through your head. Sure, you knew how to treat the wounds and for the rest Siddiq had mentioned, that must have meant the week Negan was supposed to stay longer at the infirmary, just like the possible extension in case the recovery would slow down again. So Negan still had to be here, right? “I’m back”, you called out, hoping to hear his voice before the silence that followed let the pressure on your ribcage grow. “Negan?”, you called out as you felt how your feet were beginning to make their way through the kitchen and along the hallway. Still no answer. Your breath was becoming heavier, your body more tensed while you tried to keep the thoughts in your head quiet. Hell, after all, he had to be here, he wasn’t fully recovered and maybe, maybe he was just sleeping and didn’t hear you. A part of you still expected to find a guard at some point but instead you found yourself right before Negan’s room, slowly opening the door in hope you’d discover Negan behind it, somewhere deep in the land of slumber.
But you didn’t.
The bed was empty, the sheets tousled and everything else that belonged to Negan, spare shirts and sweatpants as well as other personal belongings you had brought him from the Sanctuary that had laid on the shelf in the corner of the room were gone.
He was gone.
“Negan?”, you called out again after you had stood in bewilderment in the doorframe for moments before you were now pacing through the room, into the next hallway while your mind was forming into a mess. You were rushing through the house, looking into empty chambers and bathrooms even though you already deep down knew that you wouldn’t find him here. His clothes were gone, shit, every fucking thing of him was gone and you knew that Negan hadn’t been the one to walk himself out of the infirmary. He wasn’t here, but there was another place where he could be that made a cold shudder run through your body as you were just thinking about it. Right now, you had no idea, how or why, your mind was way too muddled for that, you just knew that you had to see it with your own eyes.
Your mind was buzzing around this unfinished house, around its basement in which laid the one thing Morgan had built and left even after he had abandoned Alexandria. It wasn’t far, just down the street, far away from the newly arranged fields and instead by the other unfinished townhouses of which a few most of them had made it undamaged through the flames. And while you were stuck in a trance, you paced down the road that was almost empty, blending out anything and anyone on your way. Your pulse was pounding in your ears, the tension was rising and the fear to actually find Negan behind cold metal bars was settling down in your body even though a force in you tried to deny it. Your eyes were focused on the last house before you urged yourself to walk closer to the corner towards the entrance, knowing that if you would find anyone standing there, guarding the house that your fear would turn into a horrible reality. A tight breath fell from your lips, your hands turned clammy before you crossed the corner and felt how the blood in your veins froze. A dark haired man stood in front of the door, leaning against the brick wall while a gun was resting in his belt’s holster next to a walkie as he let his hand wander of the thick beard that was covering his cheeks and jaw. “Fuck”, just pressed itself out of your lips in a breathy and almost inaudible manner while your mind and body was turning in a whole lot worse mess. Within seconds the dark eyes of the man darted towards you, wandering over your face as he gulped heavily as soon as he realized who you were and what you were about to want. For moments you just stood there in silence, stuck in shock and still swinging somewhere in denial, trying to tell yourself that there had to be other reasons why this man was standing there even though you knew the truth. “He’s inside”, and with those words the man broke the last bit of hope deep inside you as he spoke up and heft himself away from the wall. A shudder ran through your body, the pressure tightened on your ribcage and threatened to press all air out of your lungs while an awful mix of boiling heat and icy coldness rushed through your veins. “I can let you inside the house but not into the cell”, the man added, as if he was reading off of your face while another shudder ran down your spine, your body still glued to the spot in bewilderment before you felt yourself nodding.
From this point on everything felt like you were stuck in some video game, playing some shitty avatar that was controlled by someone else while you were stuck in a bubble that made everything around you seem surreal. You passed the guard, heard him saying something to you that didn’t come through to your mind, walked into the house, paced down the stairs and the bubble bursted right as you reached the open door behind the stairs that lead into the next room as a familiar voice made a shudder shoot through your body. “Roger boy, is that you? Trying to get on my fucking nerves ‘cause your ass can walk around like a free fucking chicken while I’m stuck in this shit-thing? Or do ya wanna give Rick a report of how I’m doing? Huh? How I’m fucking doing in here after you and your oh-so-fucking-glorios leader dragged my ass behind those bars? How long has it been? An hour? Less than that? Little early for a report…unless you wanna sleaze up to Ricky’s ass”, his voice was provoking, a chuckle was rumbling through it but it wasn’t the familiar, throaty and amused laugh, no, you could hear that he was sinking to a low and was trying to keep himself entertained so he wouldn’t fall too deep. A tight breath fell from your lips, your mind still a goddamn mess while you were slowly realizing that this was real and not some kind of illusion you could escape earlier or later. “Roger, you there? Or did I chase you away?”, Negan asked with another chuckle that mixed with a huff, right before you felt your body moving closer, as if it wasn’t under your control, your eyes stuck to the bar-door on the right side of the room. And then, with one last step you stood in front of the door while your heart skipped a beat in agony while the blood in your veins seemed to freeze once again. There he was, sitting on a bed in the corner of the room, his elbows propped on his knees as he was staring to the ground. Your eyes were rushing over him, finding not his usual white t-shirt and the grey sweatpants on him but instead some kind of prison uniform they must have put him in. The thick fabric of the steel blue collared shirt he was wearing instead was stretching slightly over his broad shoulders, matching with the blue cloth pants while his bare feet were pressing against the cold cement ground. Your heart ached by the sight of him that got partly blocked by the cold metallic bars that rushed more realness into the situation that seemed like one of your nightmares you just wanted to wake up from. Negan began to shift as you still stood speechless in front of the door, seeing him letting out another scoff before he rose his voice again and with that his glance as well, “Rog-” Within seconds his voice hushed, his hazel eyes darted at you and got drowned immediately into a sorrow filled and confused glance. “(Y/N)…Baby”, he stumbled, his dark brows perked up, then puckered as he rose himself up from the bed with a small and shaking breath before he just stood there, gulping and still staring the same way at you as you were looking at him. “The infirmary was empty and I figured-”, you mumbled, stopped by the sudden lump that was forming in your throat while Negan’s glance stared with more sorrow at you as a deep sigh left his lips. Slowly, Negan walked closer to the door, his eyes wandering to the ground, then back up to you while you were trying to keep it together. Hell, it was hard to see him this way, goddamn hard, but there was this small part in you, next to the rest that was whirled up into a threatening tornado of emotions, that was telling you that you couldn’t be the one to fall apart now. He was the one locked away, it was your part now to be strong, right? No matter how much it hurt or how hard it was. “It..fuck…happened right after Siddiq took off…hauled me through the goddamn backyards to not cause too much of a damn stir….bet Doc doesn’t even know they got me inside this thing here”, Negan mumbled as he stood right on the other side of the door that was the only thing left between you in these moments, while the small part in you got squeezed even smaller by the pain while Negan’s words suddenly began to boom again through your head, just as he had spoke them out. Especially the very last part. Of course Siddiq didn’t know. He wouldn’t want Negan to leave the infirmary yet. Not even for another week, or even more.
And just as a tight breath fell from your lips and your eyes met Negan’s for a split second, everything made suddenly sense. Why Rick had out of all sudden wanted your help, why he was talking about a new beginning, why he hadn’t been as tensed when he had talked to you as you had expected. Why he declined Siddiq’s offer for you to stay at the infirmary and work with him, why he instead wanted you far away at the crops, far away from the infirmary and even this goddamn cell. He had planned this. He had fucking planned this all. He fucking knew Siddiq would be called to the Hilltop soon, he knew Negan was supposed to stay longer at the infirmary than that and he just as fucking knew you wouldn’t let him get Negan into the cell if you were still around the infirmary nor would you reject the chance for a new beginning.
He had planned this. Your old friend had shoved you over the checkerboard like a pawn and you had in your hope jumped right onto it. He didn’t want to give you a new chance.
“Baby?”, you heard Negan ask as you caught how your thoughts had made your glance trail into the emptiness. “I-I’m coming back, I have to talk to Rick”, it left your lips almost unwittingly to your consciousness before you glanced back up to him. “Listen, he won’t let me out of he-” “I know”, you cut him off with a heavy gulp before your voice lowered and got softer, “I know…it’s something connected to this, I just gotta know if it’s true. I’ll be right back and tell you. I promise.” Negan’s hazel eyes stayed glued on you for some more seconds before he slowly began to nod just as you heard the voice of the man you where about to search for echoing quietly through to you.
Not even moments later you were pacing up the wooden stairs again, anger and dissapointment beginning to pump harder through your veins as your own footsteps sounded like dropping bombs in your head before you began to make your way back through the house only to stop as suddenly a pair of familiar blue eyes darted at you. “I’ll leave you alone”, you out of sudden heard the voice of the guard you hadn’t even noticed till now behind Rick as he was just tugging his walkie back into his belt and rushed back outside. So there he stood, sighing deeply while his jaw clenched now as uneasily and tensed as you had expected him to the day he made you the offer. His hand ran through his curls before he looked at you as you still stood like glued to the spot there, too many emotions of all kind raging in you for you to make a proper beginning before you suddenly felt how words began to travel up your throat. “Did you plan this?”, you asked, your eyes focused on Rick, a small part of you hoping to find confusion that would destroy your theory but instead they looked back at you as if he exactly knew what you were talking about, even though you could tell that it began to put pressure on him as well. Instead of giving you an answer he just stared back at you before his eyes travelled to the ground as he let out a stressed sigh, but you weren’t done yet. You needed to know everything of this, how much he had fooled you and why, even though most of you felt like you already knew the truth.
”One week”, you began, feeling how your throat was already tightening as you looked some longer at Rick ,”Siddiq wanted Negan to stay at least one more week at the infirmary.” Rick sighed, his jaw clenched one more time as he seemed to try to find words. “You wanted Negan to get into that cell as soon as Siddiq’d leave, huh?”, you continued, feeling how your voice began to tremble ,”And since you knew that his leaving was possibly gonna happen before he gave you the full go with Negan, you needed to get me out of the way.” You took a deep breath, trying to sort the mass of words and emotions while your glance stayed fixed. “Because neither did you want to leave him just on my watch because you don’t have a fucking ounce of trust left…nor did you want me to get in the way because you knew I wouldn’t let you to transfer him into this shithole before he’d have recovered like Siddiq wanted him to”, your voice was becoming a bit louder, sharper just before it broke down again as soon as you reached the end of the sentence and began to feel how the disappointment was beginning to drown the anger out. You had really hoped for a new beginning. You really had and a part of you felt dumb and naive for allowing this hope to just blindly accept what Rick had asked you too. Hell, you probably should have known better after all.
“You didn’t ask me for help because you actually needed it or because you wanted to give me a new chance…you just wanted to have an easier game…right?”, it blustered out of you, not louder or sharper like before, instead more broken as you could feel how this letdown of his and even frustration about yourself began to form a thick lump in your throat, while Rick still didn’t say a thing. “You knew I’d take it because I wanted this shit to get better. You knew I’d do it”, you said, almost whispered as the lump didn’t allow you to speak louder while you could feel some tears trying to force themselves into your eyes even though you tried everything to keep them from finishing their mission. Taking a deep breath you gulped the tears and the lump for a moment away and felt how the boiling heat in you got the upper hand again. “Did you even tell Caleb to be nice to me so I’d stay there for sure?”, you asked with a growl and a humorless and bittersweet chuckle before you saw Rick shaking his head and rising his voice for the very first time. “No, I didn’t”, he said, forcing himself to sound firm as his eyes darted into yours and a heavy gulp travelled down your throat as you could feel yourself trembling slightly through all the emotions that seemed to rush through every vein and inch of yours. “But the rest is true, or what?”, you asked with another bittersweet chuckle, the hurt still more audible in your voice than you liked as you were staring disbelieving and expectantly at him before he let out a sigh and began to slowly nod. At this moment, Rick suddenly didn’t seem as collusive as his plan anymore, if you were honest and looked through the feelings that were urging you to not let yourself be fooled once again, the glance in his eyes filled with a good bit of shame. A tension filled silence began to set in, and with each passing moment you felt how your emotions were taking more and more control of you. You were mad at Rick, furious but the anger got now drowned out by the disappointment again, by the pain that got set free as the bubble of hope you had began to build yourself up with the wish that you could begin anew with at least some of them bursted. You had been in this conflict for months, in-between two sides while you the fear of losing one or even both of these sides had grown with the war and then, when peace had finally set in, it hadn’t fully been peace for you, another, other, war had started just for you personally and for this one week everything had finally seemed like you were maybe on a way to stop this war too and come on the long way to peace with the other side. And now, now this whole thing had just been another low that began to accompany the others you had already experienced since you were back.
You could feel the lump in your throat growing again, sense the feelings taking over as you sunk your head as soon as you felt how the tears were trying to make their way into your eyes again. “You know what, forget it”, you huffed, your voice sounding more broken than you liked while you were giving in to the disappointment just for these moments. “What?”, you heard Rick say, as if he was torn himself and something in you snapped and made your glance shoot up at him. Your clouded eyes met his, a harsh gulp wandered down your throat before you could feel how it began to break out of you. “I’m sick of this, Rick. I’m fucking sick of this crap. The only fucking person who’s had a halfway normal talk with me here from our old group is Michonne”, you said, feeling how your ribcage was trembling underneath the pressure of the frustration and disappointment. “I’m not fucking telling you to be suddenly all peachy with me again. I just want a damn chance to explain myself, I just want you to believe me like Michonne does. If she can, why can’t you?”, your voice was shaking even as you tried to keep it firm while Rick just stared at you at let out a deep sigh as there was still a bit of the shame stuck in it. “I bet she didn’t even know about this plan here”, you added, your glance wandering over his face as the way his cheek muscles twitched and he clenched his jaw was enough to tell you that you had just spoken the truth out. Another shivering breath fell from your lips, the lump was still at its place and made itself a home while Rick’s silence just spurred the pain that had grown in you on. “I’m not a damn traitor. And you know that. I don’t know what you keep telling yourself to make yourself believe otherwise, but I’m not. I’m with him but Rick, you and I’ve met even during this shit war. You know that I wanted it to stop. You know that I never wanted to get any of you hurt”, your voice kept talking, not even as if it was under your control anymore but rather under the one by your raw emotions. And it didn’t seem to stop just yet. “This chance there meant a whole damn lot to me. That’s all what I’d asked for and you got no damn idea how fucking shitty it is to see that this was all just made up to treat me once more like an outsider”, you said, still shaking but more louder and firmer now even though you could still feel the tears burning in your eyes while Rick gulped harshly and shifted uneasily over the cement ground. “No matter what you say, you still know me. I haven’t just turned into a whole other person”, you added as your voice became calmer again, before it hushed completely and your whole focus was now on Rick and whatever would be his final reaction. He was becoming more restless, more uneasy than before and you could tell that your emotional outbreak had caused to break down some of the wall he had built himself up for you. And judging from the way he was acting now, he was realizing that he had crossed a line with this plan. You glanced back up at him, catching how he pondering ran a hand over his beard stubble before his eyes wandered up until they could catch yours while a deep sigh fell from his lips “You’re open for another offer…a real one?”, he asked, obviously trying to keep his voice firm as you just stared in surprise at him for a moment, trying to process what he had just told you before you already heard him beginning to continue. “I actually need your help now that Siddiq’s gone”, he said, a slight reluctancy sounding through his voice as he gulped, “Need someone who knows the meds and how to treat some wounds properly…” With that he stopped for a moment, his eyes that had trailed through the room as he had talked stopped at your face, while you stayed silent, waiting for him to go on so you could see for yourself what he was planning this time. “For the first few hours till midday I got Rosita to do that, as for the rest, I’d need you…while she’s there you work like before at the crops then take over for the rest of the day”, he mumbled, running his hand once again over his stubbly cheek while your curiosity began to grow since this could be only the first part of the offer. After this disaster, Rick certainly knew that he, even though he probably didn’t like to admit it, owed you something, owed you a fair deal to help him out again even if the rewarding side for you might be a thorn in his flesh. So you glanced expectantly at him, waiting if he would actually go through with it until he finally rose his voice. “And for that…”, Rick began, the uneasiness in his tone clearly revealing how much he actually disliked the part he was about to speak out ,”I’ll let you to him from the evening after work, till the morning.” With that your eyes widened slightly, and the surprised feeling in you rose some more. That was a lot. A whole lot. Hell, you were still mad at Rick for taking Negan out of the infirmary and lying to you, no question, and you’d be mad about that for a while but this offer was big. Your eyes darted warily into his, trying to find out if there was any lie hiding behind them like it had with the first one but instead you only found a genuineness filled glance, even though it got a bit poked by the morosity of his that was obviously not pleased with the fact hat his prisoner would be able to have company for the night. “He needs someone to take care of his wounds either way, so that’d be your job too”, Rick added hastily, almost as if he had couldn’t believe that he was actually making this deal that would after all be to Negan’s favor as well and mad him have to justify this offer to himself as well. You were still a little stuck in a trance before you forced yourself to rip your mind out of it, to let it run over what Rick had said, over each sentence as a small part of you was still warily before the genuine way Rick had behaved and the nights with Negan quickly outweighed any left doubt. “Alright…if we start with it this night, I’m in”, you finally said, mostly to test if Rick actually meant it serious before you saw him clenching his jaw but nevertheless giving you a nod. “Okay”, he said, gulping and still not fully believing what he was allowing you there before he was beginning to rummage with his hand in his pants pockets, before his fingers fished a small silver key out and he nodded towards the staircase.
Already turning around, ready to make your way down you suddenly heard Rick’s voice again. “(Y/N)? Before I let you in-”, he said, stopping to let a deep sigh fall from his lips as if he was getting once again ready for what he was about to say, “Maybe this is actually a new beginning…Carl-” He stopped again, gulping just as he had to mention the name of his son while the sadness in his eyes began to let you realize something. The guilt over crossing the line big time wasn’t by far the only reason why he had given you this offer, this was about not disappointing Carl too, about living up to what he had wished for you all. After all, this had even saved the life of his enemy. “I read his letter for you before I gave it to you…he’d wanted that”, Rick mumbled, his eyes were casted to the ground, his voice thick with emotion before he tried to rally himself. “I just-”, he began but instead of continuing just shook his head with another sigh before he looked up at you. “Yeah…I hope so”, you quietly said, looking into his blue orbs while a big part of you was just trying to sort this mess of what had happened in the past hours.
Just moments later you walked down the stairs, your body tensing slightly in the new mix of feelings that was rushing through you while you almost expected that Negan must have heard most of your argument and probably also your new deal with Rick. Your eyes were like glued to every bit that laid in front of you including Rick who was tensely coming closer to the cell while both of your footsteps sounded dull over the cement ground. And then you finally saw Negan, standing right at the door while the way his face had lightened and loosened up told you that he knew. You were like stuck in a trance again as you heard Rick telling Negan to go into the back of the cell, saw him sliding the key into the lock, right before the click of its unlocking echoed through the room and the metal door sprung open. With a few fast footsteps you stepped inside the cell, hearing how it closed again behind you, heard Rick saying something before it got silent and you got ripped out of the trance as soon Negan’s eyes met yours. Neither of you said anything, neither of you knew what to say or think, neither of you knew if you were supposed to feel devastated by the fact the he was stuck in this thing or happy and glad that you were at least able to be with each other for the night. It was a mess, a full-on giant mess that got provoked by all kinds of feelings and thoughts of which the relieved ones suddenly grew as Negan walked towards you. His arms wrapped around you, a deep breath left his lips and shook through his chest as he cradled you against him while both of you knew without speaking a single word that you needed to get through this mess together, somehow.