Waking Up in Vegas

A/N: I literally have not written anything Steroline in AGES and I am so happy to finally be back at it.

"Can we take shots of something that won't burn when it goes all the way down? It's nice that we're being 'kick-ass' and 'crazy' women and all, it'd be even better if I didn't accidentally singe my tongue off each time I had a bit of alcohol; it tastes like I'm drinking fire."

Caroline Forbes, Bonnie Bennett, and Elena Gilbert all laughed in unison, as their best—and decisively troubled—friend, Rebekah Mikaelson, threw back a late shot of whiskey. Her face upturned in disgust before she chased it with her Red Bull and Vodka and slammed the empty shot glass on the table.

Her eyes widened in question when three girls stared at her simultaneously; she straightened up in her chair and glared right back.

"Can I help you?"

"Yes, you can as a matter of fact," Caroline spoke up as she raised her hand at the bar to order another shot. "You can stop complaining about everything and just accept the fact that you're in Las Vegas, and shots of strong, funky, not tasteful things are what people do because it's fun and a once in a lifetime experience!" she said enthusiastically, as Rebekah rolled her eyes and shook her head. "Besides—we are here to celebrate Elena's graduation from P.A school; we have to make the best of it before she gets a job or a hot athlete boyfriend and we never see her again," she added, as she gave the brunette a pat on the shoulder while she laughed.

"My job will be my boyfriend," Elena chimed in, as she sipped her Patron margarita. "After Ben, I am dying to stay single for as long as I possibly can, so I can focus on myself. And I don't think any of us want to find a Vegas Guy, do we? I mean—what happens here is supposed to stay here."

"Can we toast to that, actually?" Bonnie asked, as the bartender at the trendy Nevada spot slid four more shots across the granite bar, and she grabbed hers easily; immediately holding it in the air. "Because I don't trust any of you not to bring any riff-raff back to the suite and to be quite honest, I probably will judge you a little bit even if the decision was made with your vodka-goggles on."

Caroline and the other girls laughed, but tilted their glasses in towards one another and tapped them before meeting each other's eyes.

"No riff-raff."

Caroline swallowed her helping down and breathed out a sigh, as she looked around the lounge. She knew that this was more of a "reserved" place for the strip, but there just weren't enough people dancing, for her tastes.

The crowd was mostly 30+ year old businessmen; just having a few drinks and kicking back as they sat in the club's V.I.P. And for a 25 year old girl from a small town called Mystic Falls in Virginia, this type of quiet just wouldn't cut it. Where she was from, there was one bar and it doubled as a restaurant as well. And despite those dire circumstances, she always found a way to get down and make it fun.

And now that she was in Sin City, itself—the goddamn Dance Capital of the United States of America—she was gonna do just that; she was going to dance.

She believed it was just about time to get this party started.

"Where are you going?" Caroline heard, as she hopped up in her cherry red Christian Louboutin heels, and climbed on top of the bar with ease.

She looked down to her three best friends, who were staring at her madly, before she fluffed her long blonde curls and planted both hands on her hips. She sent them a devious smile.

"What the hell does it look like I'm doing? I'm dancing!" Caroline said, as Bonnie's eyes widened with mortification, Elena let out a short laugh, and Rebekah rolled her eyes. "You can sit there and watch but I'm having fun; we came here to have the time of our lives; not to sit around and wait for the party to come to us."

Caroline began to clap her hands in tune with the house song that was blasting from the DJ system, and she noticed a change in the atmosphere as a small crowd began to gather by the bar to watch blonde show them what she was worth.

Caroline smiled knowingly as she moved with the beat to the music; playfully shaking her hair and gliding her hands down the sides of her little beige dress, as the crowd began to liven up and cheer her on.

Even her three best friends who considered her half past crazy just about a minute ago. They weren't surprised this was working out in her favor at all, because this is who she was.

Caroline was that girl who could make anything out of nothing; the girl who would do just what she was doing right now and dance on a bar if nobody else was.

And it wasn't because she was starved for attention, or desperate, or lonely; it was because she was full of light and heart. She just had this energy about her that strangers admired and her friends—despite their initial nay-saying—adored.

Caroline was the life of the party, each and every single place that she went, and she didn't mind being that way.

She didn't mind being her.

Caroline continued to move along the bar with such grace as she noticed the crowd finally starting to pick up the party. She pointed happily at Bonnie, Elena, and Rebekah as the three were now dancing as well—albeit on the ground—while the bartender tapped her leg to hand her a bottle to assist with pouring shots.

She may or may not have poured a few down the mouths of a group of vacationing Wall St. stockbrokers straight from the bottle. She undoubtedly winked their way as well, when she found her feet littered with business cards next to thirty seconds later.

When she'd had enough of re-enacting Coyote Ugly as if her life depended upon it, she finally got down, and squealed happily as she grabbed the other girls' hands and joined them on the dance floor.

This was more like it.

Caroline shut her eyes as she moved to the music; letting it completely drown and consume her, as the bass thumped through her chest and the beats danced in her ears.

This was as close to heaven as she could be, after all that she had been through this year. And in this moment, there wasn't a thing that could shake her out of the luminosity of it all.

Unless, you know, you were a total stranger that she accidentally attacked with an elbow as she was in the middle of raising her hands to the skies.

"Fuck!" she heard him yell over the music and she immediately turned around to apologize, as she was met with a raven-haired, blue-eyed, hunk-from-the-high-heavens, who was rubbing his palm over his face in pain before she clasped both hands over her mouth tightly.

"I am so sorry!" Caroline exclaimed, as she placed both hands to the shoulders of his suit jacket. "Are you okay?"

"Yeah, fine; partially blind, but it's cool—I have good insurance," he said, as Caroline let out an apologetic smile at that; he was blinking his good eye profusely and wiping away the inevitable water that was collecting beneath his bottom lashes on the other.

Thank god for that health insurance.

"Well that's good," she nodded, as he was still busy with fixing himself, while the crowd became even fuller and the dance floor more crowded. "I'm kind of just a blogger, and I don't really have benefits, so—"she began to babble, and then stopped when his eyes narrowed and he completely looked into hers.

She definitely knew this guy from somewhere; but how?

"Do I… know you?" Caroline asked, as she stared the mystery man in the face and he easily shrugged his shoulders as he straightened his tie and stepped in closer.

"Good question—a lot of ladies know me… Just depends on how well," he winked.

Caroline scoffed at that and folded her arms.

"No not that way… I think," she said, as she continued to observe him, and his dark brow lifted a bit. "Look, I know I've seenyou somewhere but I—"

"Damon, what the hell," they heard, and Caroline looked over the man's shoulder to see another approaching; her eyes widening instantly when he made his way his way through the crowd and to Damon—the man standing right before her.

Holy hell, what were the chances?

"Stefan?" Caroline asked, as the guy stopped and his eyes set on hers. "Stefan Salvatore?"

"Caroline Forbes, is that you?" he asked, and her cheeks immediately lit up in a smile, as the caramel-haired man stepped in for a hug and she graciously wrapped her arms around his toned shoulders.

She laughed in disbelief when they finally parted, and the gleam in his olive eyes shone so brightly, she felt like she had just taken a dip on a rollercoaster.

After all of this time, she still felt that; he could still make her grin like a little kid.

"How are you?" she asked, while her eyes subtlety outlined his jaw with her gaze and traced her stare over his suit-clad body. "And what are you doing in Vegas? I thought you lived in New York?"

"I do—I am still in New York," he nodded, as he looked into her eyes and offered a genuine smile. "Living with my brother, Damon here, in Lower Manhattan. We're here celebrating his birthday when he doesn't run off and get lost," Stefan said as he faced his sibling and Damon rolled his eyes.

"And how many times do I have to tell you; I'm a big boy, Steffy," he said, as he patted his shoulder. "Speaking of—"he glanced at Caroline's friends who had finally ceased their dancing and were slowing migrating to the conversation between she and the Salvatores. "Hello, ladies," Damon smirked.

Caroline motioned for the three to come in more and she politely introduced everyone to one another; though Damon insisted on kissing everyone's hands, like the charming devil Stefan had always preached him to be. Caroline finally remembered where she had seen him before; in pictures at Stefan's apartment back in their journalism interning days in Washington, D.C.

She was instantly reminded of a flood of memory and nostalgia when she thought back to that time three years ago; the brief three months when she had gotten to know Stefan Salvatore, and until this day, she never completely shook him.

He was the one that got away.

"So what do say?" Stefan's voice broke her thoughts, and she looked up into his eyes as he wore an easy smile. "Damon and I are actually gonna hit the strip and bunch more clubs that we've been hearing about. He's got some connections and apparently can get us into the Deadmau5 show," Stefan said and Rebekah bluntly chimed into the conversation.

"You can get us into Deadmau5?" she asked with wide eyes and a hopeful glare. "We were about ready to sell our souls for that show."

"Well, you're in luck," Damon said as the girls began to follow he and Stefan out of the lounge and onto the strip, where the night had finally fallen and they watched the flashy lights and neon signs that gave the illusion of the day. "Entertainment Law is what I do and I'd consider it a crime if I didn't put myself to good use."

"Let's get to it, then. I have a lot more dancing to do and I could go for a few more drinks as well," Bonnie said, as she adjusted her wine red dress as they walked, and Damon not-so-subtly gave her the up and down. "And don't look at me like that," she quipped.

Damon smirked at her sass, before sliding a cigarette out of his pack and placing it in-between his lips.

"I'll try my best, sweetheart," he promised weakly.

Caroline grinned at the banter between the two, before she felt Elena tug at her hand and pull her back a little, while Rebekah chatted up Stefan and Bonnie gave Damon a generous helping of the Bennett Offensive.

Elena slid her arm through Caroline's comfortably as the two walked and she lowered her voice to a near whisper.

"So, that's the Stefan Salvatore, who had you all tongue-tied and head over heels while you were away? He's even better looking in person, Care," she said and Caroline immediately blushed, as she quickly shook her head to shake the change in color to her pale skin. "Does he know you had a crush on him?"

"If he didn't, I'm sure he does now; what, with you guys all giving him the googly eyes," she said as Elena laughed heartily. "Seriously; don't make it obvious at the show and don't just ditch me with him. He's a friend—even though I haven't seen or spoken to him in ages—and he probably has a girlfriend. I mean, why wouldn't he?" she asked rhetorically, as her eyes wandered over to the Younger Salvatore and he was laughing imaginatively at whatever was plaguing Rebekah now.

She sighed when she felt the feeling in her stomach expanding, as he tucked his hands into his pockets and the faint trace of his voice filled her ears over the sound of the crowd.

Stefan Fucking Salvatore, and that completely ridiculous way he had about him where he could make her insides flip, without even looking at her at all. She felt like she was 22 years old, all over again.

"But what if he doesn't?" Elena asked, as Caroline turned to meet her pretty, russet doe-eyes. "What if this is fate telling you that here's your chance to maybe start something that you couldn't before?... And I mean, with Klaus out of the picture, now—"

"Can we not talk about him?" she asked abruptly. "Seriously. You all just need to stop bringing him up."

Elena pressed her lips into a thin line and Caroline breathed as she looked forward; listening to only the sound of her clicking heels against the pavement.

It was like everyone was expecting her to fall apart—every single moment of the day—because of him, and she just couldn't take it anymore. Sure, she'd avoided the entire "grieving their break-up process," by busying herself with working, vacations, Girl's Nights, and literally anything that kept her from being alone for too long with enough time to think about him, but so what?

She was doing what she could to be happy and if that meant acting like he never existed, then so be it.

It'd been six months and she was feeling and looking better than ever before; and now she was in Vegas with her best friends, while catching up with an old one.

What more could she ask for?

"I just want to enjoy tonight," Caroline said, as they neared the club and she watched Damon walk up to the bouncer, whisper in his ear, and the man nodded affirmatively before motioning for the group to come in. "No awkwardness, No Klaus, no bad memories. I know you all just want to help me move forward by opening up but… I don't want to. I'm fine. Really."

"Okay," Elena said, as they walked up—sticking out their hands to be stamped, before they were ushered into the massive night club that was most definitely blaring some electro, as the light show went on and the crowd went wild. "We're gonna just have fun; uninhibited, stress-free, crazy fun."

Caroline smiled at that as Elena squeezed her hand, and they were met with a smiling Stefan, as he walked over towards them and Caroline felt her soul alight.

"You guys coming? Damon's getting a table in V.I.P; Bonnie and Rebekah went with him. We can—"

"Dance?" Caroline suggested, as she already began to get into the groove with the music and Stefan watched on. "I don't want to sit—not yet."

"So we won't," Elena said, as she took Caroline by the hand and began to move as well. "And I guess Stefan can watch—"

"Stefan can party," he cut in with a grin, as he took both of their hands into his own and seized them both as partners. "Don't tempt me—I've got a really mean two-step."

"So I've seen," Caroline informed, as she remembered the late DC nights when she and Stefan went out with the other interns on the town. "I can only hope you've upgraded since then."

Stefan spun Caroline into his arms as her back landed to his chest, and the two proceeded to dance more closely than they ever had in the past, when his palm landed on her hip. Caroline tried to show no sign of her heart's obvious palpitating, and Stefan moved in a bit closer towards her ear before he spoke loudly enough for just her to hear.

"I don't know, Caroline—you tell me."

She'd be telling him a lot more by the end of the night if he honestly kept that up.

XXXXX

Caroline Forbes hadn't ever considered herself a "speed demon," in this or the previous life; but when she slammed Stefan Salvatore against the door to his suite and tugged at his lip with her teeth while he half-assed his way through his pocket for his room key, she was just about ready to change her name to Usain Bolt. Because things were moving fast and right now? They had no intentions of slowing down.

"It's here somewhere," he mumbled between kisses, and she answered incoherently, as her hands were already busy pulling his belt through the loops, though they were standing right there in the hallway in front of his room at the Cesar Palace.

Oops.

When Stefan finally slid the card through the reader and the door to the darkened room pushed open, the two nearly tumbled to the rug, as she threw the belt to the floor, and Stefan ripped Caroline's dress over her head like it was made of newspaper.

Their kisses led them to his bedroom, where he landed back first against the king sized mattress, with Caroline already on top of him in no time, without any effort at all.

Her fingers ran through his caramel brown hair, and her mouth emitted a small moan when Stefan's lips swallowed her at the neck and his hands eased over her navy blue bra.

Caroline's eyes snapped shut and she smiled faintly while her hands traced over his muscled arms just before pulling his tie off and fumbling with the buttons on his shirt.

She wasn't exactly a stranger to getting what—or who—she wanted, but with Stefan? It was different. Caroline had always been independent, self-assured, and in-control when it came to her life. She didn't know how to be a "girl with a crush," for guys were usually the ones to seek her out and to try to get her on their team by any means necessary.

But not Stefan.

Stefan simply befriended her, with zero expectations, and up until now, the two never shared anything that outside of being platonic simply because in all of the three months they spent together in DC, he never even tried to take it there. Caroline was his friend; his bud away from home. And though she'd always had a bit of a crush on him, it wasn't until now that he was seemingly returning it—as the two got perhaps a bit more drunk than they should have at the concert, ditched everyone else, and came back here to his suite to finish what they couldn't stop on the dance floor.

She'd waited three years for this, she realized, as she helped Stefan out of his pants and tossed them on the floor, but it was worth it.

He was worth it. Stefan Salvatore was like striking pure gold. And right now, she considered herself a fucking millionaire.

"Do you have a—" she started and didn't even finish her sentence as Stefan's hand pulled away from the night table and he flashed the metallic wrapper between his fingers as she grinned. "Bingo."

Caroline let out a deep sigh when Stefan finally rolled her beneath him and his mouth began to travel down from her face, to her neck, to her chest, before it hovered over her stomach. Her fingers grabbed his locks tightly while his tongue made swirls against her skin and when her thighs tightened she reached forward to finally remove her heels.

He pushed her back against the pillow by the shoulders with an endearing smirk that could have made Joseph Stalin blush, himself.

He climbed over her and tore to package to the condom open with his teeth while she watched in gentle awe at just how sexy he could be.

Not that she doubted him, or anything. It was just that the Stefan she knew was no nice; so calm, so collected.

And right now, he was a sex god. A pure, absolute, and untamed sex machine.

"I think you'd better leave those on," Stefan suggested as he eyed her cherry red heels and Caroline shyly bit her lip. "They look really good on you."

Caroline smirked at that when she looked up into his olive green eyes and pulled his face down further to meet hers; the soft expels of his breath hitting her lips as they stared into one another's eyes.

Her heart was positively pounding.

"You look really good on me… Still wondering what you'd feel like, though."

Stefan looked slightly surprised—but intrigued—by that, as he ran his palm slowly down her leg. Her chest heaved silently when she felt the goose bumps rising on her skin before he leaned in close to her mouth to kiss her again—but instead, detoured to her ear; delighting her with just a few simple words.

"I think I can take care of that right now, if you want."

"Yes," Caroline nodded.

"Yes, what?"

"Yes, please," the blonde smiled.

Caroline immediately ate her words the minute Stefan pushed inside and her body tightened while her nails instantly dug into his back so roughly, it was probably going to look like he was a part of a modern day Fight Club when all of this was over. His eyes looked down into hers and Caroline let out a sigh at the euphoric feeling that overtook her body the moment he finally obliged her.

He moved slowly—but assuredly—with this unmatched force that she hadn't quite felt before, in all of her life. As his hands gradually held onto hers before pinning them above her head, Caroline could do nothing but bask in the bliss of finally getting all that she had asked for. And then some.

A really fantastic hook-up, with a ridiculously hot—and sweet—guy that she'd been crushing on forever, in Sin City, on her very last night here.

It was fate and it was perfect; he was perfect. And right now, she was convinced that there wasn't anything that could ruin this or the time they shared. Because Stefan Salvatore was all that she wanted.

And right now, this—her back arched, and his lips suctioned to her chest, as he held her within his arms and pushed deeper between her legs—was all that she needed to forget about the reality of her blasé life back in a small Virginia town, where nothing happened and things were never interesting.

Caroline employed all of her strength and finally pushed Stefan beneath her—much to his surprise—as she cupped him around the cheeks he continued to vanquish her—in and out—though he had to work much harder this time to get what he wanted, while she was on top.

He didn't mind. And it was clear she didn't either, the moment her fingers grasped him at the hair and she moaned his name onto his lips, before vowing that they go another round—or three—to which he quickly obliged, before slamming her beneath him again.

All night it was, and so it would be, if Miss Caroline Forbes wanted that.

What could possibly go wrong?

XXXXX

If Caroline had to rate the intensity of her hangover from a scale of one to ten, the moment she stirred softly beneath the morning sunlight was an 8; the moment she regained consciousness was a 80.

To say "things escalated quickly" was quite literally an understatement.

Caroline groaned—head pounding— as she finally sat up against a pillow and swallowed hard when she recognized the face and the shape of the body lying beside her.

Stefan Fucking Salvatore.

Her hands tightened and her eyes widened—no, she actually didn't.

Did she?

Caroline glanced down at her body and when she saw she was naked from the neck down, she quickly wrapped the blanket over her chest. She caught eye of her dress on the floor and she groaned before pinching the bridge of her nose and shaking her head at her excruciating headache.

Fuck.

She wasn't sure how she'd managed this last night but right now, she was beyond embarrassed about it; and she was anxious beyond belief.

Stefan was hot, for sure, but she didn't mean to hook-up with him in their drunken state of debauchery and the minute he woke up, she was sure he was going to regret it. Because that's who Stefan was; a "nice guy" who may have been ridiculously hot with just about everything under the goddamn sun going for him, but none of that came without his Achilles Heel—his guilt.

She'd known that guilt well, back when they interned with one another, and Stefan spent so much time telling her about everything wrong he'd done in his life, instead of acknowledging the good. Like the fact that he was a smoking hot, twenty-something year old graduate from Harvard, who was not only the valedictorian of his graduating class, but captain of the Harvard Polo Club, and son of two of New York's wealthiest socialites to even exist this century.

And on top of his fame and riches—he was kind. He visited places she'd never heard of and saw things she could never imagine through his humanitarian work and still, he believed he was never doing enough.

He could have actually doubled for Jesus Christ himself, sometimes.

The longer she stared at him, Caroline knew the real reason she never went for a guy like Stefan, and it as because she wasn't "good enough" for him. She was a small spec in the sea of things, next to this Moby Dick and as much as she would have loved for their night after to consist of cuddling and coffee, she knew better than to expect anything from that from a guy like him.

A guy who was totally and completely out of her league, when he wasn't on an alcoholic and Las Vegas induced high.

Caroline breathed deeply as she watched the shirtless man snoring against the bed and she slowly eased out from beneath the sheets and placed her bare feet on the ground.

She was never one for sleeping and dashing, but desperate times called for desperate measures. And looking at the clock—9 AM—she had a plane to catch in three hours. Maybe she'd send Stefan an apology card for having sex with him, or whatever people did when they found themselves in these situations, she figured, as she pulled on her clothes and thought the situation out, while trying not to quiver as she slightly remembered the feeling of his hands on her throat and his tongue dancing along her chest.

Gulp.

But it was time to leave—now.

She couldn't bother to be faced with the humiliation that would run apparent on his face the minute he opened his eyes and realized he'd had sex with her—the blonde he interned with who was still doing little to nothing with her life in some Podunk town in Virginia while he clearly moved onto bigger and better things, despite his momentary sex relapse with her. He was better off waking up alone. And she was better off pretending like this never even happened.

"Ahem," Caroline heard and she nearly jumped out of her skin as she turned around and faced the door to find Damon staring at her with his arms folded over his black t-shirt and his blue eyes gleaming all the while before he smirked and Caroline's mortification began to bubble within her veins. "Leaving so soon?"

"As a matter of fact, I am," she noted, as she quickly adjusted her clothing and made her way over to the mirror. "It's been fun, I guess—"

"I'm sure it was… I regrettably heard everything," Damon said and Caroline's cheeks flushed with embarrassment. "I mean, this suite is big, but not that big."

"Right," Caroline breathed as she picked up a brush and started combing through her locks. "I forgot—Stefan did kind of mention your room was across the hall when we were…" she stopped talking as Damon furrowed his brows and she smiled nervously before finally looking into his eyes. "I need to stop talking. I have a plane to catch."

"Hm," Damon said before disappearing and leaving Caroline, as she continued stroking her locks and desperately trying to touch herself up, as her eyeliner was running and her lipstick completely dried against her lips.

She looked a hot mess. Why didn't she pack an overnight bag before coming over here? Had she really been that horny? If Stefan's Achilles ' heel was his guilt, hers was her propensity for rushing into every single thing ever, no matter the consequences of her actions the following day.

She hated it about herself—because it was like she was so impulsive she didn't think, and when she didn't think, she did stupid—but sexually satisfying things—like screwing guys she was really into, thus ruining any prospects of them actually taking her seriously or as "girlfriend material" because that was what guys did, right? Wrote you off as soon as you fucked them?

"Looks like I'll be doing the Walk of Shame," she muttered beneath her breath, when she set the brush down and glanced at Stefan one more time before making a move to vacate his room—only to be stopped by Damon, again.

This time, with a cup of steaming coffee in his hand, outstretched to her, with that devious and infamous smile of his own.

Caroline huffed as she glanced down at it before taking it into her hand and Damon eyed her observingly as she took a tentative sip and sighed against the ceramic as the hot liquid slid down her throat.

Even the coffee in this suite was better than theirs at the Hard Rock.

"Thank you," Caroline said meekly as the two walked into the living room, where Damon gestured to the couch before he swiped a few things off of the breakfast cart and put them on a plate for her, before handing them her way.

Caroline's brows rose at the hospitality.

"It's not a Walk of Shame if you get food before you go… Think of it as a Get Laid Parade."

Caroline snorted at that as she bit into the chocolate chip muffin on her platter and took a sip of her coffee before placing on the night table at her knees.

"I'll keep that in mind."

Damon didn't respond to that as he sipped his coffee black and she continued to eat her breakfast—wondering just what kind of text messages were on her cell phone from her best friend's about her scandalous night out while they all stayed at the concert and behaved themselves—more or less.

She loved her friends, but they had a knack for hating every single one of her decisions and after what she did last night, she was beginning to think they were onto something. After all, they'd all predicted that Klaus—Rebekah's brother—was going to be a bad idea but it wasn't like she listened before diving head first into a relationship with him, and then finding herself heartbroken a year later when he ended things with her because there was someone new in his life.

Rebekah warned her about getting involved with a Mikaelson and stupidly, she did it anyway—because she thought she'd be different.

She thought he'd be different for her, but he never really was. Because he didn't really care. And it was more and more depressing the times she let herself think about it, so she didn't.

She needed to mentally block out Klaus and her pain. And she needed to get the hell out of this hotel site before Stefan woke up.

"Thanks for breakfast but I have to go," Caroline said as she ungracefully made it to her feet and shoved the rest of the muffin in her mouth before downing her now mildly hot coffee. "I have a flight to catch—I need to pack—"

"Caroline," she heard and she swallowed hard when she turned around to see Stefan now standing in the living room—tiredness on his face and a giant hickey on his neck as he pulled on a t-shirt over his bare chest and took another step in before eyeing his brother. "Damon—what are you doing up?"

Damon smiled gently as he looked into his brother's olive eyes before shrugging lightly and taking the last sip of his coffee before standing up from the arm of the couch and never letting his eyes drop between the two.

Damon was acting weird; weirder than usual, even for him, and though Stefan would have liked to believe that he was feeding Caroline and keeping her company out of the goodness of his heart after her rendezvous with him last night, he knew better.

Damon was up to something; he just had no idea what. He honestly didn't even wanna know, but if he went into this blindly, it would 10 times out of 10 bite him in the ass later. It always did. It was better to be on the knowing side of Damon's scheming rather than having to deal with the aftermath.

"Nothing, Steffy, why do you think I did anything? Why are you so quick to assume the worst, too?"

"Because you are the worst," Stefan answered sourly before turning to face Caroline with a nervous smile that she was sure was riddled with regret deep down there somewhere, behind all the charm.

It always was.

"You're leaving?" he asked and Caroline nodded quickly as she folded her arms over last night's dress and bit her lip softly while she looked into his eyes and shrugged a shoulder.

"Yeah, I just—I have a flight. And my friends are probably worried, you know… I should be packing—"

"I understand," Stefan said softly as he looked into her eyes and she began to walk past him to grab her bag. "At least let me walk you back, you know? So maybe we can talk?" he asked before looking at Damon who was still very tuned into this conversation. "In private."

Caroline swallowed hard at that but reluctantly nodded as she looked into his eyes and offered a faded smile across dry lips before mumbling beneath her breath.

"Sure—let me just go get my pocketbook."

"And I'll put on some pants," Stefan noted to which Damon snorted and both parties faced him curiously as he clapped his hands together and garnered their attention.

Stefan damn near rolled his eyes as Damon dramatically took a step in towards the both of them and placed his hands on his hips as his blue eyes wandered and his tongue licked his teeth.

"So, that's it? You're just gonna walk her back and pretend none of this happened? Like it was all nothing?"

Stefan glanced at Damon with confusion as he met his eyes before lowering his tone as he took a step in towards his brother with furrowed eyes and a tight jaw.

He wasn't in the mood for this now—or ever.

"Thank you for the concern, Damon, but I think Caroline and I can handle this ourselves without the commentary," he spat lowly as he studied his eyes. "I don't need you guidance or opinion on any of this—so I'd be happier if you just shut your mouth."

Damon snorted at that as he pursed his lips together before looking from Stefan to Caroline, back to Stefan before shaking his slowly and wearing a smile that equally angered and frightened his brother all at once.

What the hell was he so happy about right now? And why? Damon was 27 years old and definitely used to Stefan's behavior when he had a little too much to drink. So why was he making a huge deal out of it now? Why was he acting like this meant more than it actually did to him or Caroline?

"You have no idea what you've done, do you?" Damon whispered hotly as he stared into his eyes, to which Stefan frowned and his brother snorted at the confusion in his eyes. "You're clueless, aren't you?"

Before Stefan could say a word, he heard Caroline clear her throat meekly and he turned around swiftly to see her eyeing a ring that was placed perfectly on her left ring finger with wide eyes before she looked up at him and he noticed he was wearing one as well.

What the actual fuck?

"Damon—" Stefan started and his brother smiled as he winked at two and held up both hands defensively before backing away and towards his room; their looks of horror in tow, as panic filled the air and amusement filled his blue eyes.

"Don't blame me—blame it on the alcohol, Mr. and Mrs. Salvatore."

A/N: Hey everyone! So, yay or nay? I really haven't written any Steroline in soooo long so I apologize if this sucked but if I do continue this story I have a lot of ideas and it will get better. So hold on tight, if you're ready for the ride. ;) What did you think about Stefan and Caroline hooking up and seemingly getting MARRIED at some point in between? I am used to doing semi-canon fics about these two so I am kind of excited to go with something different this time around. Hopefully you're all into it because perhaps I'll do another update very soon if you are? ANYWAY, R&R because I would love to read your predictions on where you think this can/will/should go and thank you so much for taking the time to read this because I really do appreciate it! Take care and until next time!