Tyler's mom had been overly accommodating, overly understanding, and had damn near been smothering him all morning. He understood that she was just trying to take care of him, but she had only managed to make him feel claustrophobic. He could feel the guilt churning in his gut and her deliberate avoidance of what had happened only made it worse. He had killed a man.
In his head, he knew it was an accident. The sheriff had said that it was an accident. The growing sense of self-hatred inside of him said he was a murderer. The fact that his genetic werewolf curse had been triggered said it didn't matter; he was fucked either way.
The sound of a car pulling up the front drive snapped Tyler out of his spiraling thoughts. The newness of being able to hear the ticking of the engine after it was turned off and the car doors closing even from deep in the house held him spellbound for an embarrassing amount of time. It was only the clicking of heels coming up the stairs of the front porch that had him cracking open his door out of habit to be able to hear better. He had intended to simply remain in his self-imposed solitary confinement, but he couldn't resist the urge to go down when he heard Caroline Forbes talking to his mother downstairs.
By the time he made it to the foyer, his dad had joined his mom and Caroline. He had heard the argument on his way down the stairs, but was having a difficult time making sense of it.
"This is Lockwood family business, so I'd thank you to stay out of it."
Even the sound of his father's voice sent a rush of anger through him and set his teeth on edge. He was quickly distracted from that anger by the scent coming from Caroline. He couldn't tell if it was just that she wasn't family, or something else, but her scent put him on edge. She smelled… dangerous. The feeling he got from her scent was so strong that he was shocked that her voice was calm and even when she talked to his dad.
"Since Mason left town, I'm the person most qualified to help Tyler out right now."
He wanted to ask her what made her sure she would be able to help him, but his dad was already arguing through his condescending sneer before he could.
"We don't need our son turned into a monster."
Suddenly Caroline wasn't calm. Her look turned cold and cruel and her voice was suddenly hard when she said, "And tell me, what makes a monster, Mayor Lockwood? Is it belittling and humiliating your family? Maybe drowning yourself in alcohol so you can ignore what's happening to your son? Or maybe killing someone at a party. I can tell you, I haven't done any of that, so I'm not the monster around here."
And just like that the guilt was back. He was feeling nauseous and so he barely paid attention as his mother, for the first time in his memory, stood up to his father. He couldn't feel proud or even awed because he was too consumed by the pain of what he had done and that Caroline saw him as a monster. That thought swirled through this head as she led him out through the back door and walked him around the lake.
He couldn't even bring himself to look at her as they rounded the opposite side of the lake and sat down on the stone bench facing his home. He had never really been able to stand silence for very long, and so he found himself speaking up first.
"So, did you actually have something you wanted to talk about, or did you just come to gawk at Mystic Falls' newest monster?"
Suddenly Caroline was animated; she turned her body toward him and her hands came to rest reassuringly on his shoulder and forearm. He could barely understand what she was saying as she stumbled over her words, though he did hear her repeatedly say that he wasn't a monster. His disbelief apparently showed, however, and she quickly jumped up to pace before him for a quick moment before turning to face him. She closed her eyes and took a deep breath before opening them and giving him a small, apologetic smile.
"When I get angry, I start talking without thinking. And what I say is not always true or even what I really think. What I said back there, it was said to try and hurt your parents."
At this she walked back to the bench, once again sitting with her body facing him and her hands on his arm. This time, he turned his head to look at her. There were tears in her eyes and she looked like she understood what he was feeling.
"You're not a monster, Tyler. Being a werewolf doesn't make you a monster. And you're not a murderer."
She looked like she was about to say something more, but instead she turned to look back at the house. He couldn't just leave it at that, and so he moved his hand and lightly touched the back of it to hers.
"What is it you're not saying?"
She looked like she was trying to decide if she should say anything, but then turned to him with a determined expression.
"I don't think Keith went after you on his own. He didn't even have a girlfriend, he had a boyfriend."
It only took a second for Tyler to make the connection between what Caroline was saying and things Mason had told him when he let him in on all things supernatural.
"You think maybe a vampire compelled him to come after me? So, either someone wanted me dead or…"
He couldn't bring himself to say it. He hadn't even fully accepted that he was a werewolf yet, and now there was a chance that someone had gone out of their way to make sure his curse was triggered.
He was brought out of his horrific thoughts by the pressure of Caroline's hand on his. He noted in the back of him mind that she felt cool, even more so than everyone else had felt since last night.
"I'm not really sure of anything yet, it's just a feeling. I'll see what I can find out. For now, we need to talk about your options."
He wanted to ask her what options she could be thinking of. Mason had told him there was no cure. No way to stop from changing once a month once you triggered the curse. The only way to control it at all was… He suddenly understood what she was talking about. The thought sent a chill through him and he had the urge to run as fast and as far as he could. He threw himself off the bench to pace where Caroline had just moments earlier.
"I don't want to be a hybrid. It's gonna be bad enough turning hairy once a month. I don't want to add the urge to rip out the throat of the people around me and drink their blood as well."
A second after he said that, he remembered who he was talking to. When he looked at Caroline, however, she didn't look upset or even offended.
"I chose to be this, Tyler. But it's not for everyone. And being a hybrid isn't even the same thing. There's nothing wrong with admitting you don't want to be one. We'll figure something out. I'll do what I can to find Mason but, if I can't, I'll be here to help you through it."
And just like that he felt like maybe it would be all right. He and Caroline talked some more and it became obvious that, given all the plans she laid out, she had put some thought into how to help him. That sense of well-being carried through the rest of the day, through the night, and right up until he made it to the school the next morning. There, he was suddenly reminded that Keith's death hadn't happened in a vacuum. All the other students were staring at him and he could hear their whispers as he passed. Even the teachers were staring, though they looked more sympathetic.
By lunch he was ready to crawl out of his own skin or, at the very least, hop into his car and drive out to the middle of nowhere so he could scream. He had even gone so far as to begin making his way to the parking lot when he heard Caroline calling his name. He turned and saw her sitting at a picnic table with Bonnie, Elena, and Jeremy. Though he wasn't sure about the other three, he couldn't resist the lure of the calm Caroline could provide.
They let him sit quietly while they unpacked their lunches, though as soon as they were all settled and started eating, Bonnie said to him, "Grams and I are working on something for you to take care of the pain next week."
He resisted the urge to snap and, instead, took a shaking breath before responding.
"Yeah, that's right, you're a… a witch."
Turning to look at Jeremy, he asked, "What are you, then?"
He wasn't sure if asking something like that was rude, but Jeremy didn't seem phased. He only gave a smirk and said, "Just human, for now. Oh, and the witch's familiar."
At this he turned and gave Bonnie a wink. Her eyes got wide and she gave an embarrassed laugh, but didn't deny it. Elena, for her part, looked mildly disturbed by whatever images his statement had conjured in her mind. After that, all conversation turned to normal high school bullshitting. Tyler had to admit to himself that he had never been so happy to complain about hard-ass teachers and how ridiculous the homework was. There were occasional glances exchanged that he didn't get, but he felt safe in assuming that was just because they were closer to each other than him.
The next day Bonnie still wasn't sure how to feel about Tyler becoming part of their "club". It wasn't that she didn't like Tyler -his past douchebag behaviors notwithstanding. It was just that they weren't telling him everything. Caroline had said that he had enough to deal with given he'd just accidently killed someone, but it still made it hard to really get close to him while keeping key information from him. She was so on edge from watching everything she said around him that it was a huge relief when he turned down Jeremy's offer to study with them.
Of course, that meant that not much studying got done. Thankfully, her dad was out of town again, so she didn't have to worry about any awkward questions or having to be careful how she acted. It felt wonderful to spend hours just lazily making out with a boy who adored her and who she adored. It felt so good, in fact, that she didn't bother to untangle from him even as she watched him falling asleep in the dark of her room through heavy eyes.
She didn't remember closing her eyes, but when she opened them again she was still in her bed but no longer wrapped around Jeremy. She felt a breeze ghost over her body right before she realized that she was no longer inside. Sitting up she could tell, even in the dark, that her bed was now in what looked to be an ancient Greek garden or temple. Of course, it could have just as easily have been the back of the Mikaelson mansion for all that she could see in the dark. She could make out what looked to be a well or small stone pond a few yards past the end of her bed.
Bonnie heard a soft flutter behind her and turned her upper body enough to see a crow perched on the wrought iron of her headboard. There was no doubt in her mind that it was Eric.
"Hey, there. Haven't seen you in a while."
Without a sound, Eric took flight past Bonnie, forcing her to turn back around to keep him in sight. He landed on the stone edge of the pond. Where the area had been empty just a moment before, she could now see all five of the Mikaelson siblings standing around it, glaring at each other. Her attention, however, was quickly caught by something further beyond them.
Propped up against a column was a full-length mirror. The frame was oval and looked to be made of dark, wrought iron. She couldn't be sure from this distance, but the design on the frame looked familiar. Curious, she quietly got off her bed, trying not to draw the attention of the family locked in a silent argument.
As she rounded the group, she could feel a heaviness in the air that made it difficult to breath. She could feel her heart beat faster as her body reacted instinctively to the danger they presented. She did her best to remain quiet as she sped up her pace to get past them. When she was finally walking away, she could feel the air around her lighten and it was suddenly easier to breathe. She was so focused on her new ease of breathing that it took her a moment to notice that there was someone in the mirror.
The woman only gave a small smile in acknowledgement. Bonnie saw her glance over her shoulder where she knew the Mikaelsons were still locked in their bitter stances. Her smile turned proud when she looked back at Bonnie.
"You felt that, when you passed them, didn't you? All that betrayal, and guilt, and rage. That volatile emotion, if harnessed properly, would be wonderful fuel for magic. And this is just what I need you to use it for."
She gestured at the frame, and Bonnie took the time to get a good look at it. It was black and ornate, and the design seemed familiar. It wasn't until she noticed the five daggers embedded around the frame and pointed inward toward the mirror itself that she knew why it was familiar.
"You want me to use the daggers to make this mirror?"
As if in answer, Qetsiyah stepped through the mirror as if it were an open doorway. She stepped in close to her and placed her hands on either side of Bonnie's head.
"It's why I had Caroline ask for them. The crow has the spell for you. He's all too happy to help in Caroline's mission. I've instructed your familiar to draw the frame without the daggers. After you've used this family to do the spell, I'll take care of the rest."
Without waiting for an answer, Qetsiyah leaned in to place a kiss on Bonnie's forehead and Bonnie closed her eyes instinctively. When she opened them again, she was laying on her bed back in her room. Hearing the soft flutter of wings, she glanced up at her headboard to see Eric perched there.
"I hope you don't mind, but I raided your kitchen for some fresh fruit for him."
Sitting up, she saw Jeremy sitting on the chair across from her bed, lit by the floor lamp beside him. He gave her a rueful grin and held up the sketch he'd obviously been working on. She could see the beginnings of the mirror Qetsiyah had shown her, though there were empty slots in the drawing where the daggers had been.
"I got a commission from the great beyond. It's gonna probably take me a couple of days to finish it."
As he returned to sketching, Bonnie felt the soft weight of Eric landing beside her on the bed. He gave her a couple of nudges with his head before he flew out through her bedroom door. She got up to follow him, figuring she'd feed him a few more bits of fruit before she called Caroline to see about getting a mirror made.
As she moved to get off her bed, she felt the crinkle of paper under her hand. Looking down, she saw a page that looked to be torn from a grimoire. She carried it with her as she stood up from the bed and walked over the Jeremy. He looked up and quietly accepted her kiss before going back to his sketch once again.
Checking the time and seeing that it was four in the morning, she decided she would also make herself some coffee before she had to deal with a cranky Caroline. As her coffee brewed, she studied the spell that Eric had apparently delivered, feeding him bits of fruit as he demanded them. When she got up to pour herself a cup of coffee, she also grabbed a notepad and pen from one of the side tables in the living room. It wasn't until she had completed her list of supplies that she finally made the call to Caroline who, strangely enough, didn't sound like she had been asleep at all.
"I've been trying to hunt down Mason, but he's almost as good at hiding as Katherine is, apparently. So, what's so important that you couldn't have waited a couple of hours until school to talk about?"
Though it was said without any accusation, Bonnie still felt a bit foolish for calling instead of waiting until she saw her friend.
"Actually, I didn't even think about waiting. Either way, it's not really something I want to be talking about in the middle of the school hallway."
At Caroline's interested hum, Bonnie continued, "I got a visit from Qetsiyah in my dream last night. Jeremy did too. She wants us to use the Mikaelson daggers to build a mirror. She didn't tell me exactly what for, but she had Eric drop off a page with the spell I needed."
Caroline gave an amused snort and interrupted, "I wonder whose book he ripped that from."
Bonnie laughed in agreement, but got back to the reason of her call.
"I was hoping you'd know how to find someone who can build a custom mirror at a decent price."
It really shouldn't have surprised her at this point that Caroline quickly came up with a couple of ideas on how to find someone to build the mirror and how to convince Klaus or Kol to finance it all.
"After all, what's the point of working with ancient vampires with too much money if not to use said money?"
When they ended the conversation, Bonnie quickly made a call to her Grams to talk about picking up ingredients. By the time she was done, it was time for her to get ready for school. She had to spend some time convincing Jeremy that they had a while before Caroline could find someone to build the mirror so he didn't need to have the sketch done within in the next few hours. When all was said and done, she had to bend a few speeding laws to drop Jeremy off at his house make it to class on time, and she found herself longing either for a time before she knew about the supernatural or to be done with Silas and everything surrounding him.