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: I'm back with another chapter of this story by request of a few reviews. Hopefully the next chapter won't take as long to write.
Previous Chapters: (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7)
Chapter 8: Cutting Ties
After leaving the boarding house, Caroline runs through the woods back to her house. She has to yet to make excuses to her mother, and she wants to change clothes before spending hours in the cold Lockwood cellar with Tyler. And she has to talk with Bonnie and explain her idea to keep her in the room with Tyler.
She is stopped, however, when she runs into Elijah. Literally. To make matters worse, she almost falls backward but he catches her and holds her close to him to steady her. “Dear Caroline,” he says with a small almost-smirk, his voice soft and alluring. “If you wanted to get close to me, you only needed to ask.”
Half of her wants to cry because she does want to be close to him, and that’s the worst part of it. Luckily, the other half, the strongest half, pushes him away with all her strength. She manages to get away, but she is all too aware that, had he not let her go of his own volition, all her strength wouldn’t have made any difference. For that reason, she’s thankful for his consideration and old-world sensibilities when it comes to her.
“What has you so upset?” he asks, confusion showing in his eyes for only a moment.
“I know,” Caroline says, her tone even, controlled. She’s reigning in her anger because if she allows it to come forth there’s a good possibility all the hurt will follow.
Elijah cocks his head, amusement dancing faintly in his eyes. “And what is it you think you know, dear?” he says and Caroline hates the slightly mocking voice he’s using.
“I know about your deal with Elena,” she tells him, crossing her arms over her chest in part as a protective gesture and in part to show her displeasure.
“Old news,” Elijah says with a wave of his hand. “I explained that to you.”
“I know that you don’t intend for Elena to make it out of the fight with Klaus. I know that you only said you’d protect her friends but not Elena herself.” Caroline doesn’t even bother to hide her anger anymore. He should know that she’s upset with him. He shouldn’t, however, know that she’s hurt by his choices, so she takes a deep breath and pushes her feelings of betrayal to the back of her mind.
He doesn’t seem fazed. “The only time Klaus will be weakened is after the sacrifice.”
Tears fall down her face as Caroline remembers all the times she defended Elijah to her friends. How could she have thought for even a second that he was worth saving? How is it that, even now, she feels safe around him? Why is it that, despite his betrayal, she still does not want to lose him?
“Do you honestly not see why this is upsetting me?” she cries as she resists the urge to stomp her feet childishly. “Do you honestly not see why…?”
She chokes on her words and turns away from him. Human responses return and she’s struggling to breathe. And when she feels his hand on her shoulder, she cries harder.
“There isn’t another—”
She turns her back around and cuts him off, his hand falling from her shoulder. “Don’t you dare tell me you don’t have another choice! That one’s just easiest. It kills two birds with one stone, too; Klaus dies and the curse is broken by a vampire so we can all walk in the sun. It’s convenient and I see the allure, but there’s Elena and—” she takes a deep breath “—and no matter how much I complain about everything always being about Elena, I love her and I can’t just sit by and let her die like that.”
Elijah reaches out tentatively and wipes away her tears. He looks at his hands curiously afterward, like he’s never seen someone cry before and is amazed at the byproduct. “I know it’s not going to be easy for you, but—”
She cuts him off again. “Not easy? Not easy? No, it’s not going to be easy, it’s going to be excruciating for me, Elijah!
“Elena’s the girl who stood up for me in first grade when May Peterson kept pulling my hair. She was the girl who switched pants with me in sixth when I noticed the hole in mine and wanted to go home sick rather than face the laughter of my classmates. She’s the girl who ate a pint of ice cream with me and watched The Notebook three times in a row after Jim Cramer stood me up on my first date in eighth, the girl who always listened to me bitch about how my mother never paid any attention to me, the girl who spent a week at my house after I found out my father left me and my mother for another man, the girl who comforted me when I found out my mother hates what I’ve become. Elena’s my best friend, Elijah, and I can’t do this—I can’t be with someone who’s willing to sacrifice her.”
She tries to walk away then, but he grabs her wrist and pulls her back. “Caroline,” he protests, his voice half-pleading and half-demanding. She meets his eyes then, and while he looks fully composed, she sees what comes very close to panic hidden in those depths. Good, she thinks, this’ll be as hard for him as it is for me.
She shakes her head at him. “No,” she whispers. “You’ve signed Elena’s death warrant and I can’t be around you because of that.”
She pulls her arm from his grasp and he lets her leave this time. She runs faster than she ever had before to get home. While a part of her wants to stay and talk and work things out with him, she knows she has no power to change his mind and she refuses to pretend otherwise. It breaks something inside of her to lose him so soon after finding him, but she can’t just pretend he’s not going to kill her best friend.
When she arrives home, she notices that her mother is not around, so as she slams the door behind her she doesn’t feel self-conscious when she falls to the floor and cries until Bonnie calls.
She’s not sure if it’s her friend’s witchy powers or if it’s just that obvious, but the first thing she asks is, “Have you been crying, Caroline?”
Caroline, forgetting that she’s on the phone shakes her head as she wipes away tears. “No,” she lies. “Why would you think that?”
“You sound absolutely miserable, Care. Do you want me to come by your house before we meet Tyler?” she asks. “We can talk.”
Caroline’s eyes widen. “No,” she insists. “I’m fine, Bonnie.”
It’s not that she doesn’t want to talk to Bonnie about everything. She does, actually, but Bonnie would never understand. Bonnie hates all vampires, even her sometimes, and she’d never be able to get why Caroline’s so conflicted by Elijah’s betrayal. Bonnie would tell her she did the right thing by standing up for herself but, while she also believes this, she doesn’t want it to just be over. It feels like a part of her is missing, and it’s tearing her up inside.
“If you’re sure…” Bonnie says, sounding unconvinced.
“Just meet me at the Lockwood cellar; we’ve got a lot to do.”
“Are we going to need the grimoire?” she asks.
“Probably…and bring whatever else you need to do powerful magic,” Caroline says, the neurotic, control-freak part of her personality coming to the forefront.
Bonnie sighs. “I don’t know how you managed to talk me into this.”
Caroline stands up and makes her way to her room, stronger now that she has something not-Elijah to focus on. “He needs me, Bonnie,” she tells her friend seriously. “You were not there last time; you didn’t see how much pain he was in.”
“But why is it up to you to help him? You know it’s dangerous, Care.”
Caroline opens her closet, pulls out a school sweatshirt from freshman year, grabs some old jeans, and proceeds to change. “Who else can help him?” she asks, her phone pressed carefully between her ear and shoulder as she pulls off her jeans and puts on the old ones. “Even if there were another werewolf around, it would just turn with him, and the only humans in Mystic Falls that know of werewolves are people we can’t risk getting hurt accidentally if something went wrong. And no one else really wants to help. Not to mention,” she adds, “I doubt Tyler will accept help from anybody else.”
“I…I think I get it,” Bonnie says after a pause. “You have to be to him what Stefan was to you when you first turned.”
Caroline nods, forgetting for a moment that Bonnie can’t see her through the phone. “Exactly that. I mean, I don’t have a clue what it’s like to be a werewolf, but I know what it is like to be not completely human and I can at least support him in that.”
Bonnie’s quit for a moment and Caroline uses the time to fix her makeup. “Like Grams tried to support me,” Bonnie whispers in the silence.
Caroline puts down her eyeliner. “If you don’t want to help right now, I can do this regardless,” she offers quietly.
“No, I’ll do it,” Bonnie insists with conviction and determination evident in her voice. “I’ll meet you at the edge of the Lockwood property in…half an hour?”
Caroline looks at her alarm clock. Has it really been that long since she got home? How much time did she spend crying by the front door? “Yeah,” she says distractedly, “I’ll meet you then.”
“Bye.” Caroline presses end and sets her phone on her nightstand next to her bed.
She stares at the bed, remembering her conversation with Elijah there. It’ll never happen again, she realizes suddenly, the realization physically causing her pain.
She hates that she’s become so dependent on his presence when they know nothing about each other. She hates that she cares that she and Stefan and Damon and Bonnie are going to have to try to kill him now—because he can’t live if he’s a threat to Elena. She hates that she still wants to love him, even knowing what he’s done and what he wants to do.
She fights the urge to cry as she goes back downstairs and writes a note to her mother. She tells her she’s hanging out with Bonnie and that she’ll probably be home late. She puts it on the kitchen table and tries hard not to think of Elijah then too.(Next Chapter)