Fandom: The Vampire Diaries
Pairing/Characters: Elijah/Caroline, with Tyler/Caroline & Damon/Caroline sprinkled throughout
Word Count: ~2000
Spoilers: through 'Daddy Issues'
Summary: (Alternate take on the werewolf/vampire face off in 2.13) Elijah shows up instead of Jonas and helps Caroline after she makes an almost fatal mistake. But helping then has unforeseen consequences for Elijah, Caroline, Damon, and Tyler.
Author's Note: So, so sorry this took so long. I had finals at school back in late May and early June, and then summer came, and in between work, and life, I had no drive to finish this story. Now that I'm at school, however, I'm ready to pick this back up.
Previous Chapters: (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6)
Chapter 7: A Change In Perception
Life goes by in a parody of normality. Supernatural is set aside in favor of schoolwork, and life continues on as if Caroline and everyone in Mystic Falls were normal, non-supernatural human beings, but Caroline cannot help but feel like it’s the calm before the inevitable storm.
She spends most of her free time with Tyler during the week after they made up because the full moon is on Friday, and they’ve been preparing. They talked about methods to keep him from her once he turns but so she can be there for him still, and bought more reinforced chains and bolts.
“Have you talked to him recently?” Tyler asks as they’re walking through the woods to the Lockwood slave quarters on Friday. There’s no real question of whom he’s talking about. It is the exact subject she tries to avoid with him because of that tone he uses.
Caroline’s eyes fall to the floor. “Not since last week,” she says. “No one has heard from him.” She doesn’t tell him how much this is worrying her, but he doesn’t seem to need her to. He picks that up on his own.
“Do you think he’s planning something?” Tyler asks as he moves tree branches out of their way.
“I don’t know,” she sighs. “Damon says he is, but I don’t want to believe it. At the same time, I know he chooses his words carefully. He’s honest, but only in an extremely literal sense. You can only trust in the exact words that come out of his mouth, everything else is conjecture, which he uses to his advantage.
“I know he’s not one of the good guys like you or Stefan. And he’s not one of the reforming kind like Damon. He’s been alive too long to be either, I think.”
They reach the slave quarters and Caroline starts unpacking the chains and handing them to Tyler who starts attaching them to the bolts in the walls. While he’s finishing that, she puts the wolfsbane in the bottle of water he brought and shakes, mixing him his own little bottle of poison.
“Are you sure about this, Tyler?” she asks in regard to the bottle.
She sees the fear in his eyes even as he nods. “Mason could do it.”
Caroline opens her mouth to tell him he doesn’t have to be strong right now, that he does not have to be like Mason, but she’s quick to realize that her words would be false.
She needs him to be strong right now. She needs him to keep her sane. And if that means letting him hurt himself to prove he’s strong enough to handle this, than she’ll have to let him do it, even though it kills her. So she nods, sets the bottle against a wall and moves away from it. It may not be at all dangerous to her, but she associates the mixture with the vervain mixture Brady had shot her with and the idea of it almost makes her nauseous.
Caroline’s phone rings then, and she answers when she sees that it’s Elena calling. “What are you doing?” Elena asks even before Caroline can say hello.
“Helping Tyler,” Caroline answers casually, “it’s the full moon tonight.”
“Can you come over for a little while?” Elena asks. “There’s something you need to know—something I should have told you sooner.”
Caroline only then takes notice of the worry in Elena’s voice and agrees immediately. “Yes, I’ll be right over.” She hangs up and looks at Tyler. “Elena needs me,” she says in explanation, her tone slightly apologetic. She doesn’t want to leave him on this day.
Surprising her, Tyler nods in complete understanding. “You go, I’ll finish up here.”
“Four hours, right?” she asks, remembering their meeting time.
“Four hours,” he agrees. “Now go,” he says with mock authority as he pushes her up the stairs. Caroline laughs as she runs through the woods toward the Gilbert house.
When she arrives, Elena is pacing the front porch.
“What’s wrong, Elena?” Caroline asks as she looks around. She notices that no one is around—well, Jenna’s upstairs, but considering all that they’re up against, Jenna’s not all that useful at protecting Elena. “And where is Stefan…or Damon, for that matter?”
“I made then leave,” Elena informs her. “I wanted to speak to you alone.”
Caroline sits on the steps, motioning for Elena to sit next to her. “Stop wearing out the floor,” she tells her friend.
Elena lets out a frustrated sigh, but does as asked, sitting next to Caroline. “I should have told you right away, but I didn’t think you’d—but Damon said you slept with him last week, and I have to tell you—” Elena says hurriedly before Caroline interrupts her.
“I did not sleep with Damon last week!” she exclaims, almost disgusted by the very idea.
Elena’s eyes widen, and Caroline could swear she sees a flicker of jealousy in them. “No, that’s not what I meant. Damon said—he told me you were with Elijah.”
Caroline’s first thought is that she really needs to go yell at Damon for basically telling her best friend that she’s easy, her next, the most important thought, is spoken aloud. “What do you need to tell me about Elijah?” she asks, worry seeping into her voice.
“I should have told you at the meeting you called, but I didn’t want Stefan to know what I did, and you didn’t say anything about getting so close to him, so I thought I could just keep it to myself.”
“What?” Caroline repeats anxiously. “What do you need to tell me about Elijah?”
Elena pauses and Caroline notices the trembling of her hands. “You know about the deal we struck? How, if I stop trying to sacrifice myself, he’ll protect my friends?” Caroline nods after a moment, and Elena continues. “I—the deal—it spoke nothing of my fate. He said he would protect my loved ones, but said nothing of me and I…I accepted.”
Caroline’s quiet for a moment as she takes this in. “He’s going to kill you,” she says as she realizes something. “That’s what he meant when he said I could only trust that he wanted Klaus dead.”
Elena nods. “It came down to me or everyone else, and it wasn’t even a choice. I don’t want Stefan and Damon to know, but I thought you deserved to hear the truth before too much happened. I didn’t want you to find out after.”
A part of Caroline wants to say she hardly knows Elijah, that she only slept next to him, and that hardly anything has happened between them, but that part of her is ignored by the larger part that feels completely betrayed by the Original.
“Okay,” she says, trying to keep her emotions in check. “I’m glad I know.” She stands and descends the few steps before tuning back to her friend. “I think you need to tell Stefan and Damon, though. They deserve to know that you’ve signed you’re death warrant. They deserve to get the chance to change your mind.” She starts walking away.
“Caroline,” Elena calls after her, a hint of desperation in her voice, but it’s nothing like what Caroline’s feeling right now.
Caroline keeps walking, but turns around briefly. “I need to meet Tyler soon,” she says. “I’ll talk to you later.”
She sees Elena nod, but knows the brunette well enough to know she has things she wants to say now. But Caroline can’t do this now, she’s too angry and she doesn’t want to take it out on Elena. And she has to get back to Tyler in a few hours.
But before she can get back to Tyler, she needs to vent to someone, so once again, she heads to the boarding house to confront Damon. She realizes that she can’t say everything she wishes because Elena gets the honor of revealing her deception, but she can yell at him at the very least.
Again, she lets herself in, slamming the door behind her. “How dare you tell Elena I slept with Elijah, Damon Salvatore!” she yells through the seemingly empty house.
Of course, Caroline knows he’s around. She hears his groan and follows the sound to Damon’s bedroom, where she finds him on the bed with a pillow over his head.
“Since we both know that has absolutely no effect on your hearing, you may as well just show your deceiving face,” she demands from the doorway.
When he doesn’t do as she asks, she grabs a book from the shelf next to her and chucks it at his stomach. One good thing about being a vampire is that her aim has improved a hell of a lot, and she hits her target. Hard.
“Hey!” he exclaims, sitting up.
When the pillow is out of the way, she throws another book…this time at his face.
He catches that one, and gives her an exasperated look. “There is absolutely no need to throw books, Blondie. I paid good money for those first editions, you know.”
“I’m mad at you, Damon,” Caroline informs him seriously. “Throwing things helps.”
“So go to the kitchen and throw glasses and plates and shit,” he says. “Or better yet, I can point you to Stefan’s room and you can trash the place. Just leave my books alone.”
She glares at him, hardly taking notice of his half-dressed state. “You shouldn’t have told Elena that. You had no right.”
“I didn’t know you told that to me in confidence,” he defends himself. At least he doesn’t patronize her by pretending not to understand her meaning.
“You could have at least made sure to point out that we didn’t actually do anything. Now Elena thinks I’m some sort of slut for sleeping with a guy I barely know that I’ve only seen twice. Hell, I’d think I was a slut if that was the case,” she rants.
He doesn’t apologize and she doesn’t actually expect him to. “Aren’t you overreacting just a little?” he asks instead, using hand gestures to bring his point home.
Caroline pauses for only a moment before exploding. “No! I am not overreacting.”
Damon rolls his eyes and Caroline reaches for another book. She doesn’t pick it up though. She walks over to the bed and sits on the edge and sighs. Damon just lies back down and eyes her carefully.
“I’m angry,” she tells him for lack of anything better to say.
“At me, I know,” he says almost bemusedly, and Caroline can practically feel him rolling his eyes. She’s been spending way too much time with him lately.
Caroline shakes her head. “Not anymore. Not really.”
“What has you so angry then?” he asks curiously. She doesn’t answer at first. She has to be careful with her words. He seems to assume she’s not going to answer, for he closes his eyes.
“You were right…about Elijah. Not where it pertains to me—he did save me, and I trust him as far as that goes. But his intentions regarding everything else? Well, they’re not exactly good, and I don’t know what I’m supposed to do with that. I mean, do I ignore what I know and lose myself in him? Do I push him away to avoid getting hurt and lose him that way? Or do I tell him I know and try to change his mind?”
“Wait…how do you actually know his intentions?” he asks. “Who told you his plan?”
“I just know,” she says defensively, reflexively protecting Elena. “It doesn’t matter how.”
Damon seems to let the issue go. “Well, you know my stance on this, then,” he says causally. She hates how easy it is for him to jump straight on the ‘bad guy’ wagon.
Yet Caroline nods in spite of herself. “And I’d agree with you if it was anyone else,” she admits. “I don’t want to lose him, though, and manipulating him would insure that. Shutting him out would guarantee it, and ignoring it solves nothing.” She adjusts herself on the bed so she’s facing him completely. “There’s no good solution here.”
Damon shrugs. “From what little I know, maybe solving nothing is your best option,” he advises, his eyes closed in what Caroline presumes to be boredom.
Caroline groans. If only he knew that ignoring Elijah’s plan will mean Elena’s death…he would not have told her that. “But what if that’s not an option?” she asks.
He opens one eye. “Well, then you have no choice but to confront him then, do you? You don’t have to manipulate him though, you know.”
Caroline nods slowly, a plan forming in her mind, her decision made.
“Now, if you don’t mind, I have a catnap to get back to.”
She rolls her eyes and jumps off the bed. She grabs one of his precious books on her way out and chucks it at him.
“Fucking baby vampires,” she hears him grumble angrily in his room as she reaches the front door. “So insolent.”