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Poisonous

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You were one of the first ones up in the prison that morning, so you decided to check and reset the snares that were in the woods surrounding your home. Waving to Carol in the watchtower and telling Sasha what you were doing as she opened and closed the gate, you set off on the trek around the fence. Luckily there were only a few walkers gathered this morning, so you made quick work of them with your machete before they became a nuisance for the fence clearers.

The first few snares were untouched so you just made sure they were still set correctly and continued forward, by the time you made it to the last snare, you had a collection of two squirrels and one rabbit. Not the best haul but better than nothing.

Seeing the marking for where the last snare was placed, something caught your eye. Maybe 20 feet from where the snare is set, you see a berry bush full of black berries and a couple of birds swooping in and picking a couple before flying back off. You wondered why no one had brought any berries in before, you think that maybe they just hadn’t been ripe before.

Taking off your flannel you lay it down and get to work picking a decent chunk of the berries from the half that the birds weren’t picking from so they wouldn’t attack you. Breaking off the couple stems that were already half broken so you didn’t have as many loose berries falling everywhere. With your bounty of berries and few woodland creatures, you make your way back to the gate, catching Rick’s attention from the garden to head to the gate and open it up for you.

“What ya carrying there (Y/N)?”

“Found a berry bush, grabbed what I could. Weren’t much in the snares this morning, but I reset them for the evening check.”

“Sasha mentioned that. Any trouble out there?”

“Nah, only a few walkers by the fence, so I took ‘em out to give the fence clearers a break this morning.”

Rick nods and pulls you in for a side hug as you begin to part ways, him back to the garden and you towards the outdoor grill set up, “Daryl got back while you were out by the way, sent him to shower after being out there for two weeks,” he chuckled as he saw your face light up and watched you pick up the pace while still trying to hold onto your berries.

Making your way over to one of the tables you lay down your berry-full shirt and unstring the critters before heading over to Carol for the pans for guts and meat. “Morning Carol, if you give me like 15 minutes I’ll have these cleaned up and ready for the grill.”

“Oh (Y/N), that would be excellent, but you know you don’t have to do every job around here. I saw you kill those walkers instead of leaving them for the crew later today.”

“You know I can’t just be idle around here. Things need doing and I need to be doing things.”
“I know sweetheart, but maybe now that a certain someone is back, you’ll consider taking a day off. It’s not like you both haven’t earned it.”

Your eyes light up at the notion, and Carol just gives you a knowing smirk, “Yeah, I knew that would catch your attention. But until then, why did you have your shirt bundled like that?”

“OH! Right, I don’t know how no one else saw it, but I found a berry bush not crazy far from one of the snares this morning.” You grab one of the bowls and head over to the table to gather your haul. “There were a couple birds picking at them, so I didn’t take as many as I wanted, but I figured maybe some fresh frui-” You didn’t get to finish the sentence, as Daryl yanked the bowl from your hands.

“Tell me ya didn’t eat any.” Daryl gruffed.

“Daryl what are you talking about?”

“Tell me, ya were your normal self and waited ‘til everyone else had a piece befor’ yaself.”

Now you were nervous, you could see his worried eyes, staring intensely at you. “Yes Daryl. I didn’t eat any, I wanted the little ones to have first pick, since they need all the nutrition for growing.”

He immediately relaxed and tossed the whole bowl into the can that the burnt grill scrapings get tossed into.  “Knew I shoulda marked that damn bush.”

“What is wrong with them? There were birds eating the berries just fine?”

“Woman, some people may eat like birds, that don’t mean they can digest like one. Them are ivy berries and are poisonous. I noticed the bush when I first set all the snares but it wasn’t blooming yet. Didn’t plan on not being here to check the snares everyday and forgot about it. Just glad it was you that found it and not one of the others. Anyone else woulda eaten their fill befor’ even thinking of others.”

That had you blushing. He was giving you his small little half smile and you couldn’t take your eyes off him. Time seemed to stop as you two just continued to stare at each other, taking in every detail that might have changed in the two weeks since you were last together.

“Alright Pookie, now that you have saved the day before noon, why don’t you go get a room before you put me off my breakfast with all this sweetness,” always ready to tease us, Carol broke the trance and had Daryl ducking his head before giving her shoulder a shove, “Stop it, I did not miss that name while I was out there.”

Carol just gave him a kissy face, prompting you to stifle a laugh and pull Daryl away and back over to the table you were cleaning the kills at. “Ignore her, and help me clean these so I can give you a proper welcome back.” Daryl looked around and quickly gave you a kiss before unsheathing his knife and getting to work, easily finishing the two squirrels before you were half done with the rabbit. He just sat and watched you work with his half smile again.

When you looked up to see him done and smiling, it made you smile back, “Hi.”

“Hey,” he grunted back knocking your knee under the table with his own, “Missed ya. Found something that made me think of ya, left it with mah pack up in the nest.”

“You know you don’t have to bring me stuff, you coming back uninjured every time is all I ever need.”

“I know, doesn’t mean I’m not gonna grab something if I see it.”

You look back down to the rabbit and finish up your work, “Let’s get these to Carol. Everyone should be heading out soon, we’ll have the block to ourselves for at least a few hours.”