Title: Casualties Of Accidental Dating

Author: skysamuelle
Author's Note: Betaed by Emmy/martinigirl15, inspired by impishdragon
Rating: MATURE

Timeline: Post 'Fool Me Once'

Summary: A series of accidental dates between Bonnie Bennett and Damon Salvatore stir feelings of a deeper nature than anyone would have guessed. Currently on- each and every end is really nothing but the beginning of another course.

THE EPILOGUE

Love as Damon has experienced it is a bittersweet agony, a self-inflicted torture that always promises more than it gives to you. He recognizes, to some extent, that he had left Bonnie to her own devices because he despises the idea of seeing her leaving him first. He couldn't –still can't- predict how he would react or feel if she became the next participant in the 'let's pass Damon over for something better' game, and this worries him.

He's familiar with the need to possess and covet, with the raw hunger of desiring something barely out of his reach. He knows how to be a vampire, how to protect what belongs to him.

Being with Bonnie puzzles him because, even having her all for himself and knowing she freely acknowledges his claim on her, he doesn't feel in control at all.

He expected to feel all-powerful and ready to take over the world, with his little witch in his back pocket, but no: all he feels is refreshed and unusually well-disposed to random strangers. He might be hitting obsessive with his constant craving to be around her all the time, but that's always been a salient trait of his personality, so he doesn't feel strange going along with it.

He is snarkier and more energetic than usual, hornier and hungrier, more eager for new things.

His days lately go like this- he wakes in his bed, with Bonnie draped over him, and they make love. Often they feed from each other while they do, and it's amazing, because it's the one moment he feels like she is nearly close enough. Her essence runs underneath his skin and he knows she can feel him the same way. It never lasts long enough, but he is confident that, in time, he will be able to convince Bonnie to embrace vampirism.

He walks with her in the woods in the morning, whether she is set on harvesting herbs for her potions or just on having a long nature stroll. He'll watch her while she tries connecting with nature spirits, or meditating among trees, and he'll study the subtle changes in her, will breathe in her power with a wary arousal.

They don't hold hands, but their hands are always all over each other, in public or private. The lust is like a fever they can't sweat out, it doesn't matter how hard they try.

They talk more than they did before, he'll admit it. All because Bonnie has no shame anymore, about questioning all random episodes of his life she sees while his blood is humming inside her. He loves talking about himself, so why shouldn't he be giving her all the answers she wants?

He's not even forced to quiz her back for fairness' sake, because Bonnie volunteers information candidly, more adamant than he is about evening the scale.

That's one more thing about her he likes, the willingness to give out as much she takes. He knows from experience that, when you have considerable power, it's easier to take advantage of those you love than of random strangers. It's easier being fair to the ones who lack the ability to hurt you.

But not for Bonnie, and he respects her more for the strength it takes.

She is a fascinating work of art and the closer he looks, the more layers he finds. Damon wants to unwrap them all, to discover what hides underneath, but there's never enough time. So he worries incessantly, whenever he is not with her, that something can happen and take her away before he can make her indestructible, immortal.

Waiting until she is ready is troubling, but not when she's close enough to touch. In those moments, he relaxes and all concerns feel distant, insubstantial.

He's grateful that, for once, Stefan is so keen on living the 'human experience' backpacking across Canada with his girlfriend (although, he can't avoid shaking his head at their choice of destination. Canada? Why, Stefan, why?).

It gives him more chances to keep his witch naked, now that her father is around more often, spreading college brochures on every horizontal surface available.

"I don't like how your father is pressuring you."

Because the only one allowed to put any sort of pressure on her, at this point, should be him.

Damon has Bonnie on her stomach, languidly stretched underneath him and over his bedspread. He has swept her hair away from her nape, so he could properly kiss the path to her spine.

"It seriously worries me that you're thinking of my father now." She giggles and it's a smoky, seductive sound that stirs in him so many appetites at once.

Yet, he doesn't give in. "He cock-blocks me with all his pep-talk."

Bonnie rolls her eyes, amused. "You are not the one who has to listen to it."

"No, but I'm the one who has to put up with your frowning face after you listen to it."

A pillow is aimed to his head for that line, but it was worth it, and he avoids it easily.

"I can stalk you anywhere"- he adds, playing it like a joke because he has never truly learnt how to approach seriously this kind of matter- "but why would you go, if it gets you so antsy?"

With a deep sigh, Bonnie rolls on her back, disentangling reluctantly from him. "Because I'm smart, and smart people further their education in order to be successful. "

"It sounds like a chore."

"Please, you are always complaining that our scholastic system teaches nothing to no one anymore and how much better it was when you were alive. Why are you throwing a bitch-fit over this?"

At first, Damon snickers at her use of the 'bitch-fit' word, then it dawns on him that she is right, and his expression grows pensive.

Why does the idea of Bonnie going to college displease him so much? He has nothing to lose, anywhere she choose to go.

College is fun. There are parties, alcohol, sororities. He loves college life.

"You are always looking uninterested and avoiding talk about that sort of stuff. You don't want to go. "

He realizes, and it quite surprises him that he is able to be so affected by her concerns, especially when they are that trivial.

"It's not that I don't want to go"- Bonnie interrupts him, in a rush- "I want to. Just…I've always thought I would have definite projects when it was the time to go, and now it's here and I've nothing but this sense of…being slowly smothered and aggravated."

"Ah."

"Ah? That's all you have to say?"

"You wouldn't like to hear what I really have to say."

"Try me." She challenges, arms crossed before her chest as she sits up, and because Damon can never resist her when she looks so righteous and self-important, he clears his throat and goes with brutal honesty.

"You can pretend with yourself all you want, but you know you are not cut out for anything remotely resembling suburban life. You need more than the promise of a good monthly check and a large house to be satisfied with yourself. You live for the rush, the edge. The magic, if you want to call it that. Normality kills you from within. Just like me."

She looks back him to him with a strange intensity before answering, "Perhaps, but you are dead, and I'm not."

"That is easily remedied." He smirks, hopeful, just to have her shake her head reproachfully at him.

"Don't even think about it."

Bonnie looks away from his suddenly blank features, but leans into his hands as his fingers play with locks of her hair.

"You should be mine forever." He reminds her, his tone in between stern and suggestive. It brings a smile to her lips because she can just see it, remember the dreams she has never talked to him about, the secret future they will build together.

"Someday,"- she promises, meeting his gaze once more- "eventually. But not tomorrow or next week or month or-"

"I get the gist"

"Okay" she smiles at his bored timbre and moves in to kiss him, surprised when he grips her chin gently and holds her back.

Damon looks serious again, and this, in her books, is rarely a good omen.

"There 's one more option, you know. I might just steal you away from this hell-hole. You should just come away with me" He breaths on her lips, seductive enough to daze her senses, and she misses those days when such a transparent try to manipulate her would gain him nothing but a sound slap. It's harder to deny him, when she understands it's not a game to him.

"What do you mean?"

He cups her face and caresses it softly, staring straight into her eyes.

"There's a whole world outside of here that you never imagined. I can hand it to you, I can show you everything. You think about shamans in Africa, the Guild of Dark Arts in Russia, the magical traditions of Ireland. Stonehenge. All their secrets are just there, waiting for you, waiting to make your power flourish. All you need to do is take a sabbatical, give me one year, allow me to spirit you away."

Bonnie pries gently out of his touch, too shocked to take his proposition seriously.

"You can't say things like that on a whim. "

He grips her wrists, tilts her chin to force her gaze back on him. "I want it."

"Well, that fixes everything"- the witch snaps, sarcastic- "never mind that a week ago you could barely tell me how you felt. "

"Talking is cheap." Damon shrugs off her concerns, impatience and displeasure chasing each other briefly across his attractive visage.

Bonnie doesn't get to reply properly because, in a matter of seconds, she finds herself pinned under a dead weight. Literally speaking. Half of her admires his determined conviction to be able to seduce anyone into anything. The other half thinks her boyfriend's an idiot.

"Quit over-analyzing" -the bastard singsongs, taunting- "Put aside the smart thing to do. Close your eyes and tell me you aren't tempted. "

"You are a bully."

"I'm right. "

"I hate you when you get like this." She ignores him, trying energetically to squirm out of his arms, even while she knows it's an impossible feat. As a matter of fact, it's just getting him more excited.

"Yes. Because you know I'm right."

"What you are"-she confesses, ceasing her recalcitrant movements –"is fickle and impulsive."

"Except when I am not." Damon exploits the chance to nip at her jaw, run his tongue on her throat "I look forward to taking care of you, Bonnie."

And inside his head, the decision is already made and cemented, so any objection she can bring up now, the stubborn leech will just take as a challenge.

Meet Damon Salvatore, the vampire steamroller.

In a sane world, she would be annoyed. Aggravated. Perhaps furious. Bonnie Bennett's world has stopped being sane a long time ago. No complaints.

"If you say so-" she hums against his grinning mouth, kissing him.

It's not the most conventional manner to agree to both move in and travel around the world with a psycho, but he gets her.

He gets her: between them, it's always been simple and complicated as that.

AN: And so,this story ends. Thank you so much to all of you for your continued support and appreciation. You made writing this tale a wonderfuljourney. Without your enthusiasmin requesting more,it wouldn't even move past being a one-shot.