I'm SO SO SO SO SO SO SORRY! I know I haven't updated in such a long time (see profile), but I hope this chapter filled with drama will make up for it.

So, please enjoy!

Disclaimer: I do not own Vampire Diaries or any of the characters


Chapter Eight


That night, Damon snuck through Elena's bedroom window once again. He had done this every night – that is, every night that she wasn't with Stefan.

He was amazed at the fight. He had always imagined Stefan and Elena to be the perfect couple: sort of like those couples that people stared at in high school, always seeming happy, always holding hands, always in love.

But if that was so, why had Stefan and Elena argued, not once but twice?* Why did Stefan lie to her, and not understand her? And why had there been so many moments where they had almost...

He couldn't think about it. He was so confused. He had loved Katherine for so long; but all of a sudden he found himself yearning for Elena. And he loved her too – or at least, he thought it was love. Was it possible to be in love with two people at the same time? Katherine seemed to think so – though he hoped that she loved him more than Stefan. But what would happen if he had to chose?

Like that would happen, he thought with a snort. There was no way he could enter that tomb. Yet... It had something to do with the tomb. They wanted it open – but how did the journal link with that? Damon was going mad, trying to figure it out. We need to find the journal. That's the only thing that can shed light on this situation.

He gazed down at Elena's beautiful face. She looked so peaceful. Didn't most people, when they were asleep? He wanted to run his hand over her cheek, but he didn't dare in case she woke up.

So, once again he pulled up a chair, sat down and watched over her. He would be her protector, her warrior, her angel. Though he wasn't a beautiful, light angel – no, he was the dark, sinister angel.

But if Elena wants me, he thought decidedly, then so be it.


Stefan was having a lousy day. Elena had been off with him, speaking to him but not really. He wasn't in the mood to actually try, not after last night. For your information, I want Damon around. What was Stefan suppose to do with that? How could he ignore the signs of history repeating once again?

He was sitting on the bench, thinking. He didn't know where Elena was, but right now he didn't care. He had too much to think about. To his surprise, he found some sliding in a seat opposite him.

"Hey," Bonnie said, with a somewhat shy smile.

Stefan couldn't help but smile back. "Hey. You alright?"

Her brown eyes, to his surprise, showed concern. "You okay? You seem..." She struggled to say the right word. "Down," she finally decided on.

He shrugged, trying to seem casual. "It's nothing."

Bonnie couldn't be fooled. "Elena?"

He sighed. "How'd you guess?"

She laughed. "You're too predictable, Stefan. Besides, usually you and Elena would be together right now and, well, you're not."

"Very observant."

"I am. Now, stop avoiding the question."

She saw right through him. "We got into a fight."

Bonnie waited patiently for him to continue.

"It was something stupid; it's not even the point anymore. I..." He paused; it was alright thinking it in his head, but it was harder saying it out loud. "I think there's something going on with Damon and Elena."

Her eyes widened. She could put up with Stefan, but Damon? All she saw was the cruel, demonic vampire. Whatever humanity Damon had previously was now gone, as far as Bonnie was concerned. "She wouldn't," she said automatically. "Elena hates Damon."

"She did," Stefan said gloomily. "But... When I came home, those two had been talking. And before that, Anna – the vampire that wants the journal – attacked again, well, Damon was with her both times."

"It wasn't your fault, Stefan. You couldn't predict when she would attack."

Doesn't matter though, Stefan thought sadly. Elena would only see who had protected her.

Bonnie couldn't help but feel sorry for Stefan. Damon was obviously trying to sabotage their relationship to get back at Stefan. Any fool could see that – which begged the question: why couldn't Elena?

Abruptly Stefan stood up. "I don't think I'm going to stay."

She blinked at him in surprise. "But – why? I mean, you've got classes-"

"I'm not in the mood," he replied. Gathering his things, he began to walk away. "I'll see you later, Bonnie."

She knew she shouldn't do it. Even Bonnie could admit there had been sexual tension between the two of them. And yet... Something inside of her, something reckless, wanted to go after him. Bonnie was use to doing what was right. What if, for once, she did what was wrong?

"Wait." Stefan turned round, somewhat surprised. "I'm coming with you."

His brow furrowed. "But... I thought-"

"I know," she answered. She started walking next to him. "But wouldn't you rather spend the day at my house than at yours with Damon?"

He grinned. "Good point. But what about your parents?"

Bonnie slipped into the passenger seat. "They're at work." She glanced at the window. "Now let's get out of here before someone sees us."

She could have meant teachers, but in Stefan's mind, she meant Elena.


Usually Elena liked English, but not today. She wasn't in the mood. She hadn't particularly been speaking to Stefan, and to make matters worse, she hadn't seen Bonnie all day either. She needed someone to talk to. If anything, she wanted Bonnie to confirm that she was right, and that Stefan was wrong.

When school ended the girl wandered out to her car. She tried to call Bonnie, wondering if the girl was sick because she hadn't been in school. There was no answer. Elena was now becoming worried: Bonnie usually checked in with Elena, even if it was just a quick text message.

Elena began turning down Bonnie's road. She decided to go make sure she was alright; after all, if Bonnie was sick, Elena should try to help her. She was feeling a little guilty: with everything that was happening, she hadn't been spending a lot of time with Bonnie. She knew the girl's parents weren't getting along very well, and that was hard on every child. She felt sympathy for the girl: Bonnie had been there whenever she needed her. How did she repay her, by spending all her time with Stefan?

Climbing out of her car, Elena walked down the garden path and tried the door. It was locked, but Elena knew where they hid the key. Smiling she unlocked the door and stepped through.

Then everything changed.

She saw, through the glass of the door that she was hiding behind, Bonnie and Stefan. Stefan was holding Bonnie in his hands, gentle and tender, like the way he use to hold Elena; his head was bent forward, his lips squashed firmly against hers. And she, with her eyes closed and hair flung off her shoulders in the air, leaning towards him desperately.

She could only stare. For once words failed her. Instead of confronting them, she whirled round and raced to the car. She heard the door slam and winced, knowing they would have heard. She managed to get in the car and reverse it, but not before Stefan came to the door.

His stunned eyes met hers. There was too much that she wanted to say, but all she could do is send him a glance filled with – what? Anger? Betrayal? Sadness? Confusion? She didn't stop to talk to him; she drove away, ignoring the feeling in the pit of her stomach – the one that she couldn't describe just yet.


Elena didn't know what she was doing. Tears were falling fast from her face, and she couldn't stop them. She didn't know what the hell she was doing.

Still, was that any excuse for ending up here?

She stood at the door, staring at the hard wood. Her stomach was full of knots, though she wasn't sure why. Was it after what she had seen, or what she was about to do?

Before she could prepare herself, the door was flung open and Damon Salvatore shot out. He flustered as he nearly banged into her, reaching his hand out to steady her. "What are you doing out here?" he asked, smirking. "Trying to listen to what I sing in the shower?" But then he focused on her face, which was pale like the moon. "What's wrong?" he asked, immediately concerned.

She opened her mouth, wanting to say something, anything. Damon could see this, and gently took her arm and pulled her inside. "What is it?" he asked gently.

Elena shook her head, feeling her eyes water. "I... I need you."

He was beginning to get confused; Elena couldn't just say that, did she? It was like one of his dreams. "What do you mean? Elena, what happened?"

The words felt dirty on her lips. "Stefan and Bonnie... Cheated on me." After that her throat closed up.

Damon stared at Elena. "What are you talking about? Stefan wouldn't cheat on you with Bonnie."

Anger surpassed confusion and shock this time. "Do you think I'm lying?" she snarled, looking and sounding like Katherine. "I thought you of all people would support me."

"You must have misunderstood. Stefan wouldn't cheat on you, not after what happened between me him and Katherine."

Fury came from deep inside her; the tiger inside of her was roaring now. "I saw them kissing Damon. How can I misunderstand that?"

Damon didn't know what to say. He wanted to believe Elena, but... Stefan wouldn't do that, would he? Damon would be the first to admit that he didn't know his brother, but even so, the pain had killed him and Stefan. Why would Stefan do that again?

"Damon," Elena whispered, her eyes desperate. "You have to believe me."

He held her gaze. How could he deny her? "Okay," he murmured. "I believe you."

The door was flung open, and Stefan stepped through. If Elena's expression was desperate, Stefan's was distressed. Instantly Damon felt his stomach contract. He couldn't decide what he wanted more: to punch Stefan or comfort Elena. Instead all he could do is stand stock-still as he watched Stefan stride towards Elena.

"Elena, please, listen." He moved towards her, but she shot backwards. She saw the hurt flash in Stefan's eyes, but at this moment she didn't care; she didn't want to be anywhere near him.

"Get away from me Stefan," she hissed.

"It was a mistake," he said, his eyes wide. "I honestly don't know how it happen."

"But it did Stefan. How could you? How could you cheat on me with my best friend?" She felt hot reluctant tears fall from her eyes. "I trusted you. I gave you my heart and I trusted you not to hurt me. But you did, despite everything I've done for you." She had enough time to glower at him through her tears. "I wish I'd never met you."

She tried to brush past him, but he grabbed her wrist. By no means was he being threatening; he just wanted to make Elena listen to him. Unfortunately Damon didn't see it that way.

In less than a second Stefan felt his head bang against the wall. Somehow Elena had been removed from Stefan's grasp unscathed and was now standing at the other side of the room while Damon pinned his brother against the wall. "You will not touch her," he growled.

Stefan hissed back at Damon. "Stay out of this Damon."

"Not when you could hurt her, little brother."

"I am not-"

"STOP IT!" The brothers turned to face Elena. She was standing in the middle of the room, staring at both of them. Damon couldn't read her expression: it was blank, indifferent.

She faced Stefan, looking at him directly. "Stay away from me Stefan. You and I have nothing to do with each other anymore, got that?"

"But Elena-" Stefan tried to move towards her, but Damon pushed him back against the wall.

Elena's eyes drifted to Damon's; silent understanding passed between them. Without another word she turned away and stormed out the door.

When he heard the car pull away, Damon let Stefan go. His brother moved his hand to his neck, rubbing it gingerly. "Nice work Damon."

Damon felt some of his own anger begin to boil. "Me? You think this is my fault?"

"If you had let me talk to her-"

"She or you would have gotten hurt, possibly physically." Damon strode away, only to turn back from the middle of the room. He sent Stefan a look that, surprisingly, filled Stefan with guilt. How did his big brother have the power to do that? "How could you, Stefan?"

Stefan glanced to the floor. "It was a mistake."

"You made this mistake once already; I made this mistake before. Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me."

"It was a mistake, Damon."

"So I heard." His blue eyes darkened. "But this time you hurt Elena. Elena, Stefan. The girl that you claim you love – or have you now realised that your love for Elena is nothing compared to the love you have for Bonnie?"

Stefan glanced at Damon. "How did you know I wasn't in love with Elena?"

Damon shrugged casually. "I don't know. You seemed happy with her but not... Happy. Your eyes were somehow empty. It was like it was rehearsed, as if it was out of a book or a play. I knew that it wouldn't work." He glowered at his brother, once again angry. "But you didn't have to kiss Bonnie to find that out."

"It just happened. But I love Elena-"

Before Stefan could even register what had happened, Damon had collided with him. This time Stefan fought back, and before long they were snarling on the floor, their teeth bared. Damon had the upper hand since he was eating human blood, so Stefan became very sore until he finally heaved Damon off.

"Don't you dare say that you love Elena," threatened Damon, panting. "If you loved her, you wouldn't have hurt her this way!"

"It was-"

"A mistake, I know! But I don't care! You had a choice, and you blew it!" He stepped forward, bearing his teeth. "So if you ever go near Elena again, so help me, I will tear your arms off. I mean it Stefan." With that, he turned round and started out of the house.

"Next time you see me, don't talk to me!" called Stefan angrily. It was always what they said to each other when they were still human and had this kind of fights.


"Fine!" Damon slammed the door so hard, he was surprised that he hadn't broken the door.


If bad things came in threes, Elena now knew that if her seeing Stefan kissing Bonnie was one, arguing with Stefan was two, then seeing Bonnie standing on her porch was number three.

She didn't even know why she got out of the car – she should have just kept driving. But now she had gotten out of the car, and Bonnie descended on. "Elena-"

"Don't," the girl cut in, her voice hard. "I don't want to speak to you ever again."

Bonnie's eyes swam with tears. "Elena, it was an accident! He just kissed me! It didn't mean anything, we were just talking-"

"About me, you mean?" Elena felt tears coming from her eyes now. "What, did you have a good laugh at me, poor oblivious me?" She was really beginning to cry now, but Bonnie was stopping her from going inside.

"I'm sorry Elena, please, tell me it's okay. Tell me that you forgive me."

"Will you let me inside?"


"Then I forgive you."

Bonnie studied her face. "You don't, do you?"

Elena backed away, suddenly very tired. "Do what you want," she said. Crying in her bedroom was overrated anyway. She got back in her car and drove away, not looking at Bonnie once.


Damon knew where Elena was without having to think. He could hear the poor girl sobbing as he walked towards her, undaunted, under the bridge.

It was raining again, thank God, so no one would be able to hear her crying. Elena was holding her legs, sobbing uncontrollably. She didn't care how she sounded, she just felt her heart aching in pain. She had been faithful to Stefan, despite everything. Admittedly she had come very close to kissing Damon, but she hadn't. That counted for something, right?

He sat down next to her, putting his arm round her shoulders. She knew who it was without even having to look, and buried her head in his chest. He allowed her to sob in his chest for God knows how long.

It began to get late, darkness overshadowing her. Damon never liked Elena being out after dark – that was when vampires without rings could come out. So he carefully lifted her in his arms, wondering if she would protest. But she didn't seem to care, only wanting to stay with him. He could feel how strongly she was gripping his clothes.

In a second they were back in her bedroom. "You should get changed," he murmured in her ear. He attempted to put her down, but Elena whimpered and struggled, wanting to remain in his arms.

"Please," she sobbed quietly. "Don't leave me."

It had been a long time since some had begged him not to leave. Damon felt his dead heart begin to beat again, as if those words had been a cure. "I won't," he promised, his voice gentle. "I won't leave you, but the best thing for you to do right now is to get changed and go to sleep."

She shook her head; Damon didn't know what she meant, but he knew that she was too upset to do anything. "Okay," he said gently, "do you want me to help you get changed?" It sounded so stupid, making him sound like a child, but what else could he say?

Elena did not reply, but only continued to sob in his chest. He tried to lower her down again, but she struggled even harder this time. "It's okay Elena," he whispered soothingly. "I promise I am not going to leave you. But as much as I want to, I can't keep you in my arms forever. I'm just going to go get your pyjamas so you can get changed for bed."

She must have listened to him, because she finally allowed him to place her on the bed. Quickly he turned away, going into her top drawer to find her some clothes. He immediately found some short pyjamas, which would cover the least amount of skin. A while ago he would have begged to see her in them, but not tonight. Tonight was filled with pain and heartache, not just for Elena, Stefan and Bonnie, but for him too. If nothing else, it reminded him of the pain that he had been through. It had been years, but in some ways it seemed like yesterday.

He went towards her, carrying a pair of red long pyjamas. She was still in an upright position, quietly crying and not attempting to hide it. "Elena, get changed," he said, but she shook her head. Sighing, Damon very carefully went down to the bottom of her top and lifted it. He was surprised to find that she didn't object; she even lifted her arms so he could get it off fully. He tore it off her body and flung it carelessly to the ground. She was now sitting there in her bra, a sight which would have been Damon's dream, had she not been sobbing.

He didn't even try to remove the bra; instead he put the pyjama top on. He did the same with her jeans, not even touching her underwear. Once she was changed, he disappeared. Elena gave a startled cry, believing that he had decided to leave. But an instant – not even a second – later he appeared again, this time holding a flannel. "Wash your face," he told her gently, and she obeyed without a word.

Once she had cleaned her face, he lifted her again and this time slipped her under the covers. As if he was her father, he sat on the edge of the bed, stroking his hand through her hair. "Go to sleep," he encouraged.

She opened her tear-filled eyes. "Damon?"

"Yes?" he whispered gently. The girl was bringing out emotions in him that he not appeared in years.

"Does it ever stop hurting?"

He wished it wasn't him that had to tell her this. "No," he admitted. "But it does lessen in time."

She stared at him. "It didn't with you," she murmured.

Once again he stroked her hair, and this time her face. "No," he repeated. "But it will for you."

She gripped his hand. "Stay with me," she begged. The thought of Damon leaving her was too much to bear.

He nodded once. "Of course." When he said that, Elena relaxed ever so slightly.

But she could not go to sleep, and continued to sob throughout the night, with Damon by her side.


*The birthmother argument, when Elena found out that she was adopted

Thank you for reading! Reviews are more than welcome!