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The Walking Dead: What Carl's Letter to Negan Said

Last week's episode of The Walking Dead saw the end of an era as Rick Grimes' son, Carl, died from a walker bite. Carl had quite a bit of time to prepare for his death (including some lengthy deathbed speech-making time), and so he decided to write letters to all of the important people in his life - including, surprisingly, Negan. Rick's greatest enemy, who murdered Glenn and Abraham in cold blood last season, appeared in Carl's vision of a brighter future for the survivors, and so Carl used his last day on Earth to try and broker a peace between his father and Negan.

He got the ball rolling on this with his last words to Rick, arguing that at some point the fighting would need to stop and that Rick would need to start building a better future for everyone. Of course, that's easier said than done when Rick is caught up in an all-out war with Negan, which is why Carl decided to make a similar plea to Negan (despite the seemingly obvious futility of appealing to Negan's better nature). In this week's episode of The Walking Dead, "The Lost and the Plunderers," Rick discovers his son's letters - Negan's included.

Related: The Walking Dead Stars Say Goodbye to Chandler Riggs

Much of the letter is obscured, but it's possible to get the gist of it from what appears on screen. Here's all of the visible text from Carl's letter to Negan:

Negan. This is...

someone. I got bit. We didn't ever...

doing... I was just helping someone. And...

You might be gone. Maybe my dad...

he killed you - but I don't think so. I think...

working on a way out. Maybe you got out. Maybe...

lost cause and you just want to kill all of us.

I think you have to be who you are. I...

...'s what you wanted. I wanted to ask you...

Maybe you'll beat us. If you do, there'll just...

...The way out is working together. It's forgiveness...

...have to be a...

...offers you peace...

...start...

Unfortunately, even a deathbed missive isn't enough to change Rick's mind. He calls Negan on a walkie-talkie, tells the warlord that Carl is dead, and then tells Negan that he's not going to stop fighting, but is going to kill him anyway. It seems that Carl may have over-estimated the power of deathbed pleas.

Then again, maybe not. The Walking Dead has also been teasing a future where Rick declares, "My mercy prevails over my wrath," indicating that at a crucial moment in his final showdown with Negan, he'll decide to honor Carl's final wish. A flash-forward in last week's episode, "Honor," showed Rick wounded and leaning against a tree, so it's possible that showing mercy won't work out too well for him. Interestingly, though, Negan did actually look genuinely upset that Carl had died - maybe he'll have a change of heart after all?

More: Here’s Why The Walking Dead Killed Carl

The Walking Dead continues next Sunday at 9pm on AMC.

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The Walking Dead: What Carl's Letter to Negan Said