AUTHOR'S NOTE:

Here is another chapter and it is really long!

We really hope you enjoy it though!

We enjoyed writing it and we hope you have just as much or more fun reading it.

WARNINGS: Language, Violence, Sex, Drugs, Drinking, Blood, Dark Themes

xxxx

Elizabeth smiled laughing a little as Jeremy kissed her shoulder. Elizabeth opened her eyes to see Jeremy smiling at her and she leaned in kissing him.

"You're sister is going to be so pissed at you." She said then kissed him again as he chuckled.

"Yeah she is," He said tangling his fingers in her hair.

"Um, ew." Elizabeth heard Damon said and she sat up pulling the covers to herself.

"What the Hell!" She said as Jeremy sat up looking at the man standing at the foot of the bed smirking at the two.

"Hello Lizzie, nice to see you're enjoying yourself." He said leaning against the bed post.

"You know this guy?" Jeremy asked and Damon smirked.

"She knows me the same way she knows you…as of last night that is." Damon said and Jeremy looked at Elizabeth.

Elizabeth groaned and flopped down on the bed pulling the pillow over her face. Great, of course Damon would show up and ruin this perfectly amazing moment for her. It wasn't enough for him to go out and sleep with whomever he wanted, sometimes within earshot of her, but the second she finds something good for herself, he had to make it potentially awkward for her.

"Damon, get the Hell out of my house now!" She yelled lifting the pillow from her face.

Damon laughed shaking his head and walked out of the room. Jeremy rolled over so he was facing Lizzie. Her pulled the pillow off of her and smiled a little seeing how frustrated she was.

"Who was that?" He asked and she looked at him frowning now.

"My ex." She admitted and Jeremy nodded lying down beside her.

Jeremy looked at her as she closed her eyes—there was a lot he didn't know about her, and he wanted to find out more about her. Things happened between them, and he really cared about her, but he didn't know anything of relevance yet really. Elizabeth took steady breaths calming her nerves, keeping her emotions in check. Jeremy smiled stroking her hair then bent down kissing her gently.

"You can go take a shower, and I'm going to go deal with my crazy ex boyfriend who is now in my living room." She said sitting up and pulling the covers off of Jeremy, and sticking her tongue out at him.

Elizabeth pointed to the bathroom and she pulled on Jeremy's shirt, then reached into her drawer and pulled out some underwear, slipping them on before running out of the room. She needed to take care of Damon and she needed to make sure that she could keep this controlled. Damon looked up at her from his perch on the couch and smiled at her as she came into the living room.

"What is up with you and Stefan with these Gilberts? My God, Lizzie, he's three years younger than you, technically speaking." He said standing up walking towards her and she crossed her arms over her chest.

"What do you want Damon?" She asked and Damon smiled tilting his head to the side. "Stop with the eye thing."

She waved her hands around and groaned as he did it. Damon chuckled, loving that he still had this effect on her. It meant that to some extent he had an edge over her and he liked feeling like he had some sort of control—she hated it when he felt that way.

"Cee sent me over—well she mentioned stopping by but I told her I'd just tell you to come over to the mansion, sort of like a meeting." He said walking into her kitchen, Elizabeth mumbling following close behind.

"Okay you told me so leave." She said as he reached in her fridge and pulled out a Butterfinger and unwrapped it.

"I will," He said taking a bite and Elizabeth glared.

"Stop eating my candy and get the Hell out of my house!" She yelled and with a blink of an eye Damon was gone.

She was glad that he was, but she couldn't dwell on it too much because she smelled smoke. She turned around to see Jeremy walking down the stairs, a joint in hand wanting to laugh a little because it was like the first thing in the morning and he was already getting high. He was adorable.

"There's my shirt." He smiled and Elizabeth smiled too, watching as he took a hit of the joint.

"Really? This early in the morning?" Elizabeth asked and he shrugged.

"I've got to have something to calm me down with all of the yelling I'm going to get as soon as I step foot in my house." Elizabeth frowned wishing he wouldn't get in trouble and sighed, running her fingers through her hair.

"Okay, I'm going to go get ready then I'll drop you off at your house." She said and he nodded taking another hit. "Feel free to raid my fridge and well just get comfortable, I'll be down in a bit."

Elizabeth pulled his shirt over her head surprising Jeremy and he choked on the smoke. Elizabeth chuckling and walking past him and up her stairs. She pulled out her phone as she grabbed a dress from her closet, and a bra heading for the bathroom. Luckily she had taken a shower last night after Jeremy went to sleep but she hadn't fed—she hadn't fed it about a day in a half, and Jeremy's beating heart was tempting her. She dialed Cee's number putting her strapless bra on then putting on some deodorant.

"I am so sorry Liz, I tried to stop him but he wouldn't listen." Cee said on the phone and Elizabeth chuckled.

"Damon is of the least of my problem's right now Cee; please tell me you have some sort of blood lying around." She said putting her on speaker phone as she pulled her dress on.

"No, what is it Liz?" Cee asked worried and Liz groaned applying eyeliner.

"Nothing really I just haven't fed, and there's an extremely cute and very alive boy downstairs who I like very much, and I don't want to miss school." Cecily chuckled a little lying down in a lounge chair that was in the study.

"So feed off of him. Is it that Jeremy kid?" She asked and Elizabeth smiled running the brush threw her hair.

"Yeah it's Jeremy, and no I can't do that to him…he's too…important to me." Elizabeth smiling a little and Cecily smiled happy—Elizabeth was moving on.

"Uh oh, Elizabeth's in love." Cecily teased and Damon poked his head into the room, Cecily looking up at him and rolling her eyes.

"Shut up Cee…but he's just so…so incredibly sweet, and that's what I need. No more assholes like Damon." Elizabeth said Damon listening in on the conversation.

Cecily glanced at Damon, seeing a hurt look fly across his face but as soon as it came, it left just as quickly. She smiled a little brighter when Patrick came into the room shirtless, Damon nodding approvingly at the bite mark on his chest. Elizabeth may have been above feeding on Jeremy, but after the night Cecily had had, she was not above feeding on her French teacher.

"Well I'm happy for you," Cecily said giving Damon a look as he walked towards her. "Well I have to go because Damon's trying to snatch the phone!"

The line went dead and Elizabeth sighed and closed her phone with a small laugh. Elizabeth gave herself a once over feeling self conscious and then decided that sooner or later no matter how she felt, she had to get up.

"Oh God," Elizabeth said smiling a little—she hadn't felt this way since she was human, and she first met…Damon.

Elizabeth Peterson sat in the very back of the small café' sipping on her coffee. She had snuck out that night, to get away from her mother. Ever since her father left her mother, she became abusive, verbally and physically. She wiped her eyes with her handkerchief as a few tears feel from her eyes.

Damon Salvatore sat with his brother Stefan, and his friend Cecily Harrison. Stefan and Cecily were in their own world, making eyes at each other, laughing about something. Damon looked around bored, and then he noticed the small girl in the corner, her dark blue eyes red rimmed. She was beautiful, that was his first thought. She was small, fragile looking, her dark locks covered her face, in a way where it looked like she was hiding, which she was…and she was innocent looking, which is what Damon liked most about her.

"Well she's pretty," Cecily said noticing the small girl Damon was looking at.

The girl looked up noticing the three most beautiful people in the room staring at her. She blushed and turned her head back to her coffee, her hands shaking. Damon smirked and stood up, he turned to the two love birds as they laughed some more.

"Don't wait up tonight," He said and then turned walking towards the small frigid girl.

Damon stood not but two feet away from her, but she didn't look up at him, she didn't even acknowledge his presence. But she knew he was there, and that's why she wasn't looking up. She didn't want someone seeing her in such a broken state, especial not such a handsome man…but that wasn't stopping Damon.

"Can I sit here?" He asked smiling and Elizabeth slowly raised her head, looking Damon in they eyes for the first time and her heart skipped a beat.

Elizabeth groaned shaking off the memory. She didn't need to be thinking about Damon, it was only going to upset her, and ruin her day. She took a breath and walked out of the room, Jeremy lying on her bed chowing down on one of her candy bars. He looked at her and smiled his face heating up.

"You look beautiful," Jeremy couldn't stop himself and he blushed a little as Elizabeth smiled pulling on some flats.

"Thank you." She said grabbing her book bag, mentally thanking Cecily for doing her homework for her while she had gotten ready for the party last night and Jeremy stood up as Elizabeth grabbed her keys.

"Come on Jer, let's get you home." She said, and once she dropped on Jeremy she went straight for the Salvatore mansion, Cecily waiting on the porch for her.

Cecily had been pretty excited to see Elizabeth coming towards her, not because of what she wanted to talk to her about, but because she needed to see her friend. Patrick came out of the front door with his bag slung over his shoulder, smiling at Cecily and kissing her gently before he headed out, nodding at Elizabeth. Cecily had explained to him that she was a family friend of Elizabeth's and of Stefan's and though there were things she had forced him to understand, she was all right with that.

"He stayed over last night?" Elizabeth asked her.

Cecily laughed loudly. "Yeah…it's a long story. Long story short, Stefan was out at Elena's until late and I ran into Patrick at the bar. One thing led to another and I brought him home."

"Did you feed off of him?" Elizabeth asked slowly.

"I wouldn't be me if I didn't." Cecily said with a shrug. "Stefan and Damon are both inside, I just…I wanted the four of us to all talk about something important, okay?"

"Whatever you need, I'm here." Elizabeth told her nodding.

To be fair, the four of them hadn't all been together in the same room yet and it was kind of awkward…they weren't sure what to say. Elizabeth still didn't know about the actual physical confrontation that the boys had had and Stefan didn't know why Cecily was so adamant about the meeting. All she knew was that she had school soon and she needed to make sure that she could get there in time.

"Long story short since you all look nervous or bored already," Cecily said suddenly, looking directly at Damon who definitely looked bored, "Feeding on and killing/maiming random people—don't do it. Yeah, the stick-in-the-mud side of me is back, but get over it because I don't want us to be hunted. This day and age is more likely to see that vampires are real given the ridiculous fiction the teenagers read nowadays so be careful, okay? Fine…you're excused, Damon."

Almost as soon as Cecily had said 'day and age', Damon had left the room because he didn't want to be lectured. Cecily just sighed since the meeting was more for Damon than anyone else and then offered to drive Stefan and Elizabeth to school. Stefan accepted and Elizabeth gave Cecily a look because she had her own car—in fact she had a Porsche.

"I have a car." Elizabeth told her.

Cecily nodded and shrugged. "Yeah, I know, so do I—I just figured that maybe you'd wanna give it a rest and it's not like you can't come back here for it. The three of us would have a chance to talk about things."

"It could be fun—as long as Cee doesn't swerve off of the road and kill us all." Stefan said with a laugh.

"Oh whatever, Mr. Negative." Cecily responded, smiling at him as she laughed too.

Elizabeth smiled at them, glad to see them getting along so well, wondering if she should take them up on the offer or go on her own and leave them to talk amongst themselves some more. Stefan was thinking how nice it was to have the two of them near him again and Cecily just wanted to be able to spend time with them like this, knowing that with just Stefan she'd feel awkward.

"You know, Liz, you could live here if you wanted." Stefan told her suddenly. "I mean that way there's always a carpool and you wouldn't have to live in that giant house all by yourself."

Elizabeth practically choked on her own saliva. "Eww—I mean obviously not you two, but I just…I'd rather live in a cave feeding off of beetles and drinking my own boiled urine than live in the same house with Damon."

"You mean you don't do that now? Huh." Damon said as he re-entered the room and grabbed a book from the bookshelf. "I forgot to bring Kipling with me."

"I hate you." Elizabeth said with a sigh.

Cecily laughed. "We all hate him—you guys want that ride or not?"

They accepted and she explained the previous nights' events with the Salvatores to Elizabeth, trying not to have to talk about Patrick. She knew that Stefan had heard them the night before and it wasn't even like they had sex—Cecily was in it strictly for the talking, cuddling, and the midnight snack. Elizabeth ended up insisting she and Cecily talk more about the fight since Stefan was blowing it off, and then she kissed Cecily's cheek before heading towards the school.

"I'll tell Mr. Strauss that you say 'hi'." Elizabeth teased her.

Cecily laughed awkwardly. "Just be good—you too, Stefan."

"Whatever you say, Mom." Stefan teased and Cecily blushed.

She knew she was mother henning and she needed to stop, so she just drove away and then returned to the mansion, eating some cereal. Cecily had known she needed a job and so she'd been circling ads in the paper, finally settling on a job she wanted. Zach had left earlier and Damon came into the kitchen, looking down at the newspaper and all of Cecily's little circles. He had hoped she was going to be lazy like him, but she was starting to revert back to the Cecily he and Stefan had first been acquainted with.

"She's going to catch cold if she doesn't bundle up at night." Cecily explained, taking a deep breath. "Can you give her, her coat please, Damon?"

Damon smirked at Cecily. "You know you're not Katherine's mother, right?"

"Damon, just give her the coat, please?" Stefan stepped in.

He understood that Cecily was just looking out for her 'dearest friend' and he admired that about her. She didn't go out of her way to have fun with them all as Katherine did, but it wasn't like she was always cold. Stefan had a way of getting her to smile even when she didn't want to, and when she did play games with them, she was fun to be around. Still, Stefan and Damon always wondered why she felt like she had to mother everyone all the time.

"Fine, I'll do it." Damon replied and then he was off.

Cecily watched him as he hurried away. "You know, you could wear a coat too, Mister!"

Actually come to think of it, Damon realized that he didn't know anything about Cecily's past before him. All he knew was that she was a lot older than him and that she knew Katherine far better than he and Stefan had ever come to understanding. She was an open book and yet there were chapters that were ripped out and locked away. It wasn't the time or place, so Damon instead decided to tease her for old times' sakes.

"Why is this circled?" Damon asked her, pointing to one of the ads.

Cecily looked up from her cereal and raised her eyebrows. "To remind me which address to go to, Damon."

"They're looking for a nanny." Damon explained to her, raising his eyebrows as well.

"Yeah, Damon—I can read." Cecily said laughing a little. "I know that's easier for some of us than for others."

"Even I don't drink from children, Cee." Damon replied, annoyed she had just made fun of him and his reading habits.

Cecily looked appalled suddenly. "Damon! I'm not going to drink from their kid! I'm just going to get a job since we're going to be here for a while."

"Whatever helps you to sleep at night." Damon told her as he grabbed a pack of blood out of the fridge.

"Go away, Damon." Cecily said finally, finishing off her cereal.

Damon looked at her and he nodded, understanding that she was still upset about the night before. A lot of things had happened to her and she didn't really want to talk about them and Damon didn't want to pry and make her think that he cared even though he did. So instead, Damon decided to change the subject so that he could stay in the room with her and not have to be off on his own even though he could stalk his new prey: Caroline.

"So this teacher guy you're all into now?" Damon asked suddenly.

Cecily chuckled as she put the bowl into the sink. "I'm not all into him. He's sweet and funny and attractive but…I just used him for a midnight snack—not that the spooning wasn't nice, because it was."

"So he's just to make Stefan jealous then? Like Jeremy is there for Liz to make me jealous?" Damon asked her.

"First of all, I'm not trying to make Stefan jealous and second of all, leave Elizabeth and Jeremy alone. You're a terrible person and Jeremy is good for her. Now if you'll excuse me, I have a job to apply for." Cecily told him as she grabbed the newspaper. "Stay out of trouble today, or I will have to end you."

"Yeah, whatever." Damon responded briefly.

He thought about what Cecily had said about Jeremy and it made up his mind—he was going to prove to her that he didn't care about Elizabeth and Jeremy and go after Caroline. As he headed to do that, Cecily drove to the large, expensive house of Madeline and Christopher Grey. It was her first choice even when the door opened and their son, Matthew, ran out of it, his back pack on, yelling about how he didn't want to go to school…this was definitely a place for Cecily to mother.

"Matthew! Get back here!" His father called after him, hurrying along.

Madeline came to the door and took a deep breath. "I'm so sorry about that. You must be Cecily Harrison."

"That would be me, guilty as charged." Cecily responded, watching as Christopher got a hold of his son. "I take it that's Matthew."

"That would be our pride and joy." Madeline responded looking worried. "Please don't tell me you want to back out now—we can't get a new nanny…it was hard enough trying to keep the other one."

Cecily smiled at her. "Trust me…I've handled worse."

"Then the job is yours if you want it." Madeline told her grinning.

xx

Elizabeth tapped her pen on the desk sighing as she waited for everyone else in the class to finish their pop quizzes. She was the first to finish, and had already gotten her test back, A+ obviously. She raised her hand and the teacher Mr. Tanner nodded waving her forward.

"What is it Miss. Peterson?" He whispered and she glanced at the clock making sure she really had forty-five minutes of class left.

"Sir, since I'm finished may I leave?" Elizabeth asked eager to get out and feed before she had to go through the rest of the day hungry.

"No, we have a lesson today—you'll just have to wait until your classmates finish." He said and Elizabeth growled quietly frustrated.

There was only one way out of a mess like this and Elizabeth didn't want to have to do it with the whole class behind her, but she was desperate. She got cranky when she didn't have any human blood in her system and so she placed both her hands on his desk leaning towards him.

"Let me leave." She said compelling him and Mr. Tanner went blank.

"Elizabeth feel free to leave since you've already finished your test." He said mutely and she grinned then went back to her desk.

She got looks from Stefan—he had also finished his test before everyone—and she stuck her tongue out at him, grabbing her book bag and quickly left the class. Elizabeth went to her locker first humming a little as she pulled out her math book shoving into her bag. She shut her locker and headed for the doors leading out of the school, looking around, trying to find a stray human she could fed off.

"Hey Lizzie," She heard Tyler call and she glanced to her side to see Tyler walking towards her.

She rolled her eyes turning away, still looking then smiled because it was almost like he'd fallen right into her lap. Tyler…she could feed on Tyler. She smiled and turned back meeting him halfway, her new plan set into motion already.

"You want to go to the football field? I don't think anyone's there." Elizabeth said smiling up at Tyler and he grinned.

"Sure," He said and Elizabeth smiled and grabbed his hand leading him to the football field.

Elizabeth let go of his hand, leading him where no one would be able to see the two. Then she stopped and Tyler smiled pulling her towards him because he was expecting something a lot different than what she was planning. He put his hand on her neck and she smirked, needing this so badly.

"This might hurt a little." She said her eyes changing and then she jumped tearing into the flesh on Tyler's neck, his blood flowing into her mouth but she pulled back gagging, her throat burning, her bodying becoming numb—she fell off Tyler, him falling to the ground as well.

"Elizabeth!" She head Damon scream and he was over to her in minutes.

"He…vervain." Elizabeth said remembering that Stefan had warned her about Tyler probably having vervain in his system.

"What the Hell is she?" Tyler asked standing up holding his hand to his neck, Damon turning to him his eyes the same as Elizabeth's, though Damon was determined to kill Tyler, Elizabeth stopping him by grabbing his hand.

"Don't…kill…him." She choked out and let go of his hand praying he would listen.

Damon looked at her his eyes softening truly worried about Elizabeth. No matter what he said to everyone else about her being his little prop, seeing her hurt like this reminded him of the feelings he always kept buried. Damon nodded then stood up and he was suddenly right in front of Tyler and rung his hands around his throat.

"You will forget you ever saw Elizabeth today—you were attacked by an animal." He threw Tyler aside then scooped Elizabeth up in his arms not stopping until he was threw the doors of the mansion.

Zach had left, Cecily was off job-hunting, and so Damon had the house to himself, he laid Elizabeth on his bed sitting beside her. She just looked so helpless there and so beautiful…so small and vulnerable just like when he'd first laid eyes on her. There was something about looking at her there that brought memories back for Damon too.

Damon stood outside the Peterson house, listening to Elizabeth's mother screaming at her calling her foul names that didn't even belong in the same sentence as her name. Elizabeth didn't want him to interfere, but he couldn't just stand outside her house when her mother hit her then grabbed a knife of the counter. Damon was in her house, already have been invited in before. He grabbed Elizabeth's mother by her neck growling at her slamming her against the wall. Elizabeth cried from the corner she was in, begging Damon not to kill her.

"You brought the devil into my house! I knew you were like your father! You un Christian little whore!" Damon slammed her against the wall again.

"You will never touch Elizabeth again, you will never speak to her, you will never even see her again." Elizabeth's mother cried closing her eyes as she squirmed in her hold, Damon dropped her, the knife falling to the ground. Damon turned to Elizabeth and helped her up holding her face in his hands.

"Are you okay, did she hurt you badly?" He asked his fingers brushing against the cut on her lip. Elizabeth shook her head crying. "It will be okay Lizzie, I get you a place to say, you don't have to stay with her anymore. I love you."

"Damon…" Elizabeth said and Damon smiled stroking her hair.

"I'm here Liz; it will stop soon, just rest." He said leaning down to kiss her check.

Elizabeth closed her eyes as she felt his lips on her skin. She wanted to cry…Damon was trying to help her but that was the last thing she needed—a sweet, caring Damon to help her when she was in distress. It was too much like the old Damon…the one she had finally accepted didn't exist, but now she was getting a glimpse of him.

Elizabeth smiled up at Damon as he held the rose in front of her pulling her attention away from her book. She took the flower from him inhaling the smell, a grin spreading across her face.

"Why are you always so sweet?" She asked as Damon kissed her lips, Damon picking her up ignoring her protest carrying her into the bedroom.

"Because I love you," He said and Elizabeth smiled wrapping her arms around his neck.

"I love you too." She said kissing him.

xx

Cecily had had a pretty trying morning trying to get Matthew to school and she was going to have to pick him up too. She rubbed her temples, trying to figure out why she was doing this when she could be like Damon, lounging around doing absolutely nothing. Still, being around children helped because Cecily had always wanted a family, but then she had been turned into a vampire…by the only man other than Stefan that she'd ever truly been in love with.

"Klaus, I don't get it." Cecily said softly, smiling at him and feeling rather entranced by his electric blue eyes, running her fingers through his blonde hair.

Klaus was far older than Cecily would ever be able to comprehend, and for some reason he had allowed her to be his companion. Whether or not he actually loved her was beside the point—the point was that she did things for him and that he had turned her long enough ago that she was strong. He hadn't wanted to taint her too much given her strong will, but at the same time he had hoped she'd become more of a killer than she was.

"You're not necessarily supposed to get it, Cess." Klaus informed her, kissing her temple. "I'm feeling a little famished."

Cecily smiled and closed the book they'd been reading together. "Then we should find someone to feed on."

"Do you like this town, Cess?" Klaus asked her seriously. "We don't have to stay here if you don't want to."

"I could do for a change of scenery." Cecily admitted with a small shrug. "Did you have a little maiming fun in mind? We haven't had that kind of fun in a while and I'm kind of excited to see what you have in mind."

Klaus smiled and kissed his little companion softly. "I've taught you well, Cess."

Cecily smiled at him and then hurried up in her dress, glad to have such a man by her side even though he wasn't really a man…he was a vampire. He only kept her around because she was good company and because she always did as he said—she followed directions well. No matter what happened, Klaus' word was the law for her and she would follow him until the ends of the Earth.

"So it's going to be a long day…you've been through so much worse, Cess." Cecily told herself nodding.

Cecily kept trying to tell herself that she was going to be fine, heading for the mansion because there was nothing else to do. She had pretty much started her job right off the bat and she needed to figure out how she was going to keep Matthew busy. What would she have done for her own child? Did she even know that anymore?

Once upon a time she had been married and she had thought about starting a family but in came Klaus, killing her husband and then turning her into a vampire against her will. At first Cecily was bitter about it, but soon she realized that having eternal life meant that she would never again be a man's property…she'd never again have to answer to anyone but herself—and of course Klaus. He'd taught her so much and showed her so many things and she just didn't think that she could deny him anything ever.

"Damon? Are you home?" Cecily asked aloud and then she felt it—something was wrong. "Lizzie?"

Cecily hurried with lightning speed to Damon's room, opening up the door without knocking and seeing Damon there looking down at Elizabeth fondly. He tried to compose himself but Cecily saw right through him and smirked a little bit, shaking her head. She knew what Elizabeth needed and she knew that Damon knew that, but he was sitting by her side instead.

The vervain in her system wasn't going to kill her, so Damon was able to make her wait it out while he got to be near her. Cecily under normal circumstances would just let him do this, but she needed to know what was going on. Damon was going to have to play by her rules and though he wouldn't like it, he couldn't take her and he knew he probably never could, so he'd have to do what she wanted.

"What exactly happened?" Cecily asked him.

Damon looked directly at her. "She tried to feed on Tyler and he has vervain in his blood."

"Well obviously, he's the mayor's son." Cecily replied and hurried out of the room to the fridge, coming back almost as quickly as she had left. "What she needs is some fresh blood in her system to flush it out, so why not feed her what you're hording away?"

"If you're so into this doctoring business then why don't you do it?" Damon asked her coldly.

"Because you obviously want to." Cecily replied tossing him the bag of blood.

Damon tossed it back. "I have things to do—I just wanted her in a safe place."

"Of course…" Cecily said nodding, sitting next to Elizabeth and taking over as Damon left, looking at her and smiling a little, "Damon still loves you, I think."

"Damon just likes being in charge." Elizabeth managed, feeling her eyes change as Cecily opened the pack of blood with her teeth.

Cecily handed the bag over pretty quickly, Elizabeth taking it eagerly and drinking it down, slowly at first. She still felt pretty tired and the burning sensation was still there but it was lessening, the more blood that she drank. She was still going to have to rest, but having the extra human blood in her system was helping and she was glad that Cecily was there. In fact Cecily even cuddled up against her and stroked her hair, having had her fair share of vervain in her system before too.

"If you're not going to feed on Jer, the least I can do is find you someone that you can feed on." Cecily whispered to her, holding the girl she felt so sisterly to close. "Have you heard any word on how Vikki is doing? Does Jer know anything more?"

"Jeremy went to see her this morning…but he didn't tell me—he thinks I'll be upset with him I think…" Elizabeth said shrugging a little.

Cecily smiled because it was apparent that Elizabeth honestly liked Jeremy. He was sweet, and he cared about Elizabeth, plus he showed his affection openly not hiding it away like Damon did with Elizabeth. Jeremy was able to show Elizabeth that he truly cared about her, and he didn't care who knew that…he made her feel like she was actually as special as she was.

"What is it with Vikki anyway? What's he like so much about her?" Cecily asked and Elizabeth shrugged looking up at the ceiling.

"From what I've heard, she deflowered him, and he fell for her but she doesn't want to date him 'cause he's younger than her. I mean he's years younger than me and I'd date him in a heart beat." Elizabeth said smiling a little, Cecily glanced at her. "He's just so sweet. I mean when I'm with him I feel safe, which is weird since I'm a vampire. He's just so different then Damon. He let's people see how much he cares for me, he's honest with me…he doesn't leave me alone in the bed in the morning."

Cecily looked directly at her, her eyes widening…wait a second. She wasn't slow on the uptake—she knew what Elizabeth meant—she was just surprised that things had progressed so soon. They didn't know much about each other, but at the same time they knew all they really needed when you were a vampire moving from place to place.

"You and Jer had sex?" She asked and Elizabeth smiled nodding.

"Yeah," She said and Cecily sat up sitting crossed legged.

"You have to tell me everything! Like every last detail." Cecily said and Elizabeth laughed sitting up slowly, Elizabeth feeling better, she was just really exhausted.

"What you mean every detail? I'm not going to go all descriptive if that's what you're saying." Elizabeth laughed and Cecily rolled her eyes shaking her head.

"No, I mean…how did it start? What was it like—you know the basics." Cecily said smiling, smiling more as Elizabeth smiled too and took in a breath.

"I didn't plan it, I just wanted to you know be friends but I well…I sort of teased him a little—I had taken my shirt off to change." Elizabeth said looking up at Cecily as she laughed.

"Yeah you so didn't plan it." Cecily teased and Elizabeth hit her playfully. "Now come on I need more than that. Was it sweet and sensual or well you know?" Cecily said winking and Elizabeth snorted, sighing and smiling a little.

"He was really sweet." Elizabeth started looking up at Cecily. "He was so nervous—not that he showed it or anything—but he was just so afraid that I didn't really want it to happen. It was the most…intimate I have ever felt with anyone."

Cecily grinned happy Elizabeth was starting to be able to move on. It was about time that Elizabeth found herself in a healthy relationship and though Cecily wanted to invite Jeremy to dinner to grill him since he might potentially be dating one of her dearest friends, she was okay with him. The only person standing in their way was Damon…and Cecily wasn't sure what he was going to do about the situation.

"There's a difference between intimacy, and pleasured thoughts, Lizzie." Damon said walking towards the two girls on the bed.

He had come back to make sure Elizabeth was doing okay—not that he would admit it—and had heard the girls' entire conversation. Elizabeth stood up, putting one of her hands on her hips. Damon smiled grabbing her chin tilting her face up towards him, Cecily shaking her head and making a face.

"You may have felt close to your little human, but you will never be able to fully love him, because all you'll think about is me." Damon said and Elizabeth slapped him in the face leaving a red hand mark.

Elizabeth felt the tears forming in her eyes as she glared up at Damon. "I hate you so much."

Elizabeth growled a tear falling down her cheek then she was gone. Damon smirked at Cecily as she stood up, her glaring at him. She had half the mind to just rip him a new one for treating Elizabeth so, but she knew she didn't want to kill Damon…he'd been there for her before. They were still friends even when he was a giant ass.

"She'll be back." Damon said as his smirk grew, and then suddenly he felt knuckles in his face and he hit the ground with force, knowing that had Cecily wanted, she could have hurt him so much worse than making blood come out of his nose. "What the Hell? I think you broke my nose!"

Cecily got up and shrugged, grabbing her bag. "It'll heal momentarily. Stop being an ass. Now I'm going to go pick Matty up from school and you need to find a new hobby—one that has nothing to do with Elizabeth."

"That wasn't very nice—Liz can take it and fight her own battles." Damon responded, picking himself up and feeling his nose heal as he looked at the blood on his fingers.

"Yeah, but as her best friend I have the right to fight for her." Cecily explained to him. "I'm off—be good today."

Cecily headed out as Stefan headed inside, smiling at her as he took his bag off of his shoulder, asking her how she was. She explained she was running late to pick up Matthew because she'd gotten the nanny job, and headed out as Stefan congratulated her. Honestly Cecily thought that it would be good and fun, but Matthew was a handful and so obviously wanted his parents and not Cecily.

It was one big fight all the way from the school, to the car, to his house, where she found out he didn't have the key on him, so they had to change locations. The only place that she could think of was the mansion and she didn't want Matthew to be in the same place as Damon but she had no other options. So she phoned the Greys and told them she was locked out and taking Matthew with her, them letting her do it and hanging up quickly, Cecily sighing—mansion it was.

When she got there, Matthew was in awe, but that lasted only a little while and then he started running around. Cecily had to follow him everywhere after telling Damon and Stefan to behave, trying her hardest to get Matthew to calm down without having to manipulate him. She knew that she was a vampire and that she could make Matthew do whatever it was that she wanted, but he was just a child—that wouldn't be right.

"I'm going to eat him." Damon threatened when Matthew ran out of his room with a book.

Cecily shot him a look as she paused in the hall, rather annoyed herself. "I will kill you before you get the chance to do that."

"Fresh blood." Damon said suddenly, he and Cecily both sensing Elena. "I'm inviting her in, you get that under control."

"You're not charming in the slightest." Cecily told him making a face.

"I am too!" Damon called after her, going to let Elena inside.

Cecily hurried after Matthew, who sat in a chair finally, opening up the book he'd found in Damon's room. It was Kipling and Cecily didn't mind him reading it—besides, he almost looked like he had tuckered himself out and Cecily was thankful for that. All she wanted was to become Matthew's friend, but that was going to take some time.

"Is Stefan here?" Cecily heard Elena asked Damon and that was it—Matthew was off again like a bullet, running out into the hall and then stood still for a moment to look at Elena before heading down the hallway opposite Cecily, heading for another room.

"Matty!" Cecily called after him, stopping in front of Elena.

"Oh…wow…you live here with them. So you two must…and he?" Elena tried, pointing at Damon, then to Cecily and then towards where Matthew had disappeared, Matthew coming back out and focusing on a lamp.

Cecily gave Elena a look of pure disgust. "Oh my God, no. Damon and I? Wow…no. And Matty? Not mine, I'm a nanny and we got locked out of his house, however I do live here. Eww…you thought Damon and I? No. Matty! No!"

Cecily wasn't quick enough—Matthew bumped into the table with the lamp and it fell off, crashing to the ground. She groaned and Elena held in a laugh as Damon shot her a look and Cecily knew she was going to have to pay for that. Matthew was a handful, but at least he was helping Cecily to forget about the ridiculous things.

"You're paying for that, Cee." Damon told her, looking at the vase that he and Cecily had been talking about earlier.

Cecily took a deep breath. "Entertain Elena, I have to go yell at him for breaking the vase that you told me twenty minutes ago that you hated."

"Well I'd rather Stefan be mad at you than at me." Damon joked, smirking at her.

"Oh…good, point. Stefan! Damon broke the vase!" Cecily called up to him and then she was off to find Matthew who was curled up on her bed with his book. "Do you want something to eat, Matty?"

Matthew looked up at her, tired and smiled a little. "I could do for some food. You're not tired of me yet?"

"No," Cecily told him smiling a little and laughing. "Sandwich, Matty?"

xx

Elizabeth frowned sitting alone in Mystic Falls, only park. Elizabeth had calmed down a little, but her eyes were still red and puffy, and Damon's words to clung to her making her cry a little more. How could he do that to her? Be such a complete asshole when she was happy. Elizabeth sighed and buried her face in her knees and let out a sob.

"Elizabeth," She heard Jeremy say then felt his presence in front of her. She looked up to see him. Jeremy saw the tears and his face fell. He took her face in his hands wiping away some tears. "Lizzie what is it?" He asked truly concerned and Elizabeth frowned trying her hardest to hold back another sob but she slipped and he pulled himself to her, holding her tight as she cried into his shoulder.

Jeremy stroked her hair, saying things to soothe her wondering why she was crying. Jeremy hadn't known her long, but every time he saw her she had a huge smile and she was always happy. This was a side of her he'd never seen and he wanted to help her, learn what had caused her to be like this. But then something he thought of what could have caused it.

"What he do?" Jeremy asked surprising Elizabeth. She pulled back to look at him and he stroked her hair.

"You are so amazing." Elizabeth said smiling a little then hugged him. Jeremy wrapped his arms around her and Elizabeth closed her eyes. Jeremy knew that Damon had done something, he just knew she didn't even have to tell him. So there had to have been something there, and even if Damon said she wouldn't be able to love him, she knew she could.

"Do you want to go on a date?" Jeremy asked and Elizabeth pulled back wiping at her eyes.

"Hopefully you'd let me make me self pretty before we went on a date." Elizabeth said smiling a little.

"You do look pretty though." Jeremy said and Elizabeth blushed, something she didn't do often.

"You're such a kiss ass." Elizabeth teased standing up. Jeremy stood up as well laughing.

"I mean it, you do." He said and Elizabeth smiled rolling her eyes.

"How about we go to my house?" Elizabeth asking smiling then frowned. "But I don't have my car to get there." She said realizing when she had ran off, she had well literally ran off leaving her car at the mansion.

"Where's your car?" He asked and Elizabeth sighed. She didn't really want to tell Jeremy but she knew she had to because he trusted her to be honest.

"At Stefan's," She said and Jeremy nodded. "Stefan's Damon's little brother." She admitted looking up at him as the started walking.

"Oh," Jeremy said nodding. He didn't really mind, he just didn't like Damon. There was just something…wrong about him and he was afraid for Elizabeth. "Are you friends with Stefan then, or were you there to see Damon?" he asked looking down at her.

"Stefan and I are friends, along with the other person that lives with them, Cecily Harrison, she's my best girl friend, and Stefan's my best guy friend. I love them both." Elizabeth said nodding. Jeremy had taken the pain of Damon away, she wasn't even sad anymore, she was just so happy she was with Jeremy.

"Is she that one girl you were with the first night we met? The one that kept making eyes at Stefan?" Elizabeth laughed making Jeremy smile happy to hear her laughing again.

"God, Cecily needs to meet you." Elizabeth said and Jeremy smiled taking her hand in his.

"So take me to meet her." Jeremy said intertwining his fingers with hers. Elizabeth chewed on her lip. "I can handle Damon, and if he tries anything I'll just kick his ass."

Elizabeth forced her best smile, but she knew if Damon did something, and Jeremy fought back, that it would not end well at all. But Jeremy looked like he really wanted to meet her, and she didn't want to refuse.

"Fine, you can meet them, plus I can get my car." Elizabeth said smiling up at Jeremy. He smiled and nodded looking forward into meeting people for Elizabeth's past.

xx

"Here's your ice." Stefan whispered to Cecily with a smile.

He and Cecily had watched as Elena had left kind of hurt about what had happened with Damon and then eventually Matthew curled up on a couch and fell asleep. Kipling was near him and Cecily had ordered everyone to be quiet, while he slept. He was really testing everyone and she knew that, but she needed some peace and quiet while it lasted.

"Thank you." Cecily replied quietly, taking the ice from him and blushing a little when Stefan sat down right next to her and held her legs on his lap.

They hadn't been this close in a really long time and she didn't know what to do—say something? He was almost with Elena now and she didn't want to ruin that for him, but what if this was the perfect place to have an 'in' with him? No…no that wasn't what was best for Stefan. Cecily didn't think she deserved him, so she kept her mouth shut.

"He's actually really adorable." Stefan told her, catching her blush and looking at Matthew to create a subject for them. "He has a lot of stamina."

Cecily smiled fondly at Matthew. "He's quite a handful for a 9 year old."

"That he is—do you think this is a good idea, Cee?" Stefan asked her. "I mean come on…he's a human boy and I know how you are around children."

Stefan ran his fingers through Cecily's hair and nuzzled her neck with his nose, kissing it softly when she laughed a little. They were sitting in the park and Cecily had been cooing over a little girl at the playground. She felt torn and so did Stefan—they were vampires and kids weren't in the cards for them, but at the same time they also knew it was something they both deep down wanted.

"She can hold her own." Cecily said happily. "Did you see how she stood up to that bully?"

Stefan chuckled. "Yeah, I did."

"Well I have to tell you that had I ever had a kid, it would have been a little girl just like that." Cecily told him grinning.

"I don't doubt that for a second." Stefan said as he kissed her temple.

She smiled and turned to him, kissing him softly and running her nose along his. Normally they spent the majority of their time with Damon and Elizabeth, but they liked having moments to themselves. Besides, it was nice that Stefan could talk to her about these things and not freak out…even though he wished he could give her what she wanted—and she wished that too.

"Just because I can't have my own doesn't mean that I shouldn't be able to enjoy other peoples'." Cecily responded, her smile gone. "I wish his parents paid more attention to him—oh and by the way: we need to keep this place stocked with peanut butter. Matty and I both like it a lot more than we probably should."

"I'll keep that in mind." Stefan chuckled, stroking her hair absent-mindedly.

Cecily smiled a little and then felt his hand pull away when Elizabeth came in the door followed by Jeremy. It was like she suddenly didn't have a headache anymore and she was sitting up, close to Stefan who was still holding her legs. Jeremy smiled at them and Elizabeth beamed, glancing over at Matthew sleeping and smiling—he was adorable.

"This must be Matthew?" Elizabeth asked her.

Cecily smiled at him and then at Elizabeth. "Yeah, that's Matty—the best man in my life right now. I take it this is yours? Jeremy?"

"I had a feeling I'd like her." Jeremy said with a chuckle and then blushed when Cecily put her finger up to her mouth. "Sorry…he a handful?"

"Yeah. Are you acquainted with the Greys?" Cecily asked him, slipping her fingers into Stefan's hair, feeling like it wasn't as awkward with her legs on his lap if she was showing him affection.

"Yes, I am…they work a lot." Jeremy told her. "So…Lizzie tells me that you and her are old friends."

Cecily nodded and grinned. "Yeah. She, I and the Salvatores go way back."

"I'm back! It was such a lovely outing too!" Damon announced, being loud on purpose.

Matthew's eyes shot open and he sat up, realizing that there were more people there. He vaguely remembered Stefan carrying him to the couch he was on, and he knew that he didn't like Damon, but he hadn't met the other two yet. At first he wanted to run around and make a mess again, but he was groggy and so he went straight for Cecily, climbing up onto her lap and looking up at Elizabeth as he snuggled into Cecily—Elizabeth was beautiful.

"It's okay, Matty—this is just Lizzie and Jeremy." Cecily told him, stroking his hair as Stefan sat close to the two of them, both of them having to resituate for Matthew, but Stefan stayed protectively close…like he was protecting his family.

Matthew nodded slowly. "Hi, Lizzie…Jeremy."

"Damon? Get out." Cecily said with a look on her face that meant he shouldn't cross her. "I warned you earlier to let Matty nap."

"But I was—I was just so excited when I saw Lizzie brought her little puppy here, I couldn't control myself." Damon said giving Elizabeth a look as he flopped down on one of the couches, Cecily glancing at him.

Elizabeth sighed and rolled her eyes. "Damon why are you such a di—"

"—Elizabeth…" Cecily warned glancing down at Matthew and Elizabeth put her hand over her mouth.

"Oh my God I am so sorry Matty." Elizabeth said walking over to him, and Matthew beamed as she crouched down in front of him, sitting up a little on Cecily's lap.

"No problem, you know you are really pretty." Matthew said smiling and Elizabeth smiled at him.

"Aw, thank you Matty, that's really sweet." Elizabeth said ruffling his hair.

"Jeremy, the nine year old is stealing your girlfriend…you must really suck." Damon said smirking at him as Jeremy chuckled a little nodding.

"I must suck? You must be the one that sucks if she's choosing me and a nine year old over you." Jeremy said and Elizabeth laughed a little.

Cecily covered her mouth to stifle her laugh, she and Stefan looking at Damon and smiling. They thought it was a rather funny situation even though Damon glared and stood up, not wanting to be in the same room anymore when he was losing this battle. Everyone in the room seemed to be against him, and he just needed to say something witty and then head off before anyone could tell him off again.

"You guys are too boring for me. I am going on another outing—oh and Lizzie," Damon said pausing at the door way, "have fun with your extremely younger men."

Damon then left and Elizabeth sighed as Cecily rolled her eyes and Stefan moved to stand, Matthew still on her lap. He seemed content with Cecily right that moment, and he watched as Jeremy sat down besides her, feeling awkward just standing in the middle of the room. Stefan smiled at him and Cecily ran her fingers through Matthew's hair slowly, Matthew deciding to speak first.

"Don't worry about him Liz—he's just jealous because you think I'm cuter than him." Matty said smiling up at her and Elizabeth laughed.

"You are exactly right Matty," Elizabeth said tapping his nose with her finger then looking at Cecily.

"I should be heading back—Jeremy's going to cook me dinner." Elizabeth said standing up and Matthew pouted, Elizabeth catching his look. "Hey, Matty you know you are my number one boyfriend right?"

She leaned down towards him and Matthew beamed, glad that she had said it. Cecily smiled too since he'd taken to Elizabeth almost immediately, Jeremy not feeling concerned about it and Stefan smiling as he crossed his arms over his chest.

"Really?" He asked excitedly and Cecily laughed.

"Really," Elizabeth said as Jeremy stood up, Cecily extending her hand towards Jeremy and he took it.

"Nice meeting you," Jeremy said as the shook hands, Elizabeth smiling at the two.

"I hope to see you again Jeremy—soon too." Cecily said winking at Elizabeth.

Jeremy smiled and Elizabeth took his hand, Cecily and Stefan smiling at how happy she seemed with him. The two of them were so cute together and they had someone to rely on and talk to and Cecily was so glad that Elizabeth had found someone she could trust…someone who wouldn't cheat on her just to keep himself occupied.

"I'll see you guys later—keep Damon away from my Matty." Elizabeth said and Cecily smiled laughing, Elizabeth and Jeremy walking out, and Jeremy smiled.

"She's nice," He said and Elizabeth nodded noticing Damon standing by the Porsche.

"Yes she is—she's the best person I know." Elizabeth said as Damon waved at her smiling. "What do you want now Damon?"

Jeremy leaned against the passenger side of the Porsche watching the two as Damon shrugged. He knew that Damon was just trying to get a rise out of them and it was semi working, but he didn't want to seem like the super jealous boyfriend right off the bat either. He'd take care of Damon if it came down to it because Elizabeth deserved to be treated with respect and Jeremy wanted her safe and happy.

"Nothing really, just wanted to see my beautiful ex girlfriend off," He said and Elizabeth groaned unlocking the door.

Jeremy climbed in as Elizabeth opened the door, purposely hitting Damon with it. She climbed in and Damon walked towards the front of the car. It wasn't that easy to get rid of Damon and she knew that from experience, but at the same time she had to humor him since she couldn't just run him over and get it over with.

"Have fun babysitting!" Damon called laughing as Elizabeth flipped him off driving out of the drive way.

Jeremy looked over at Elizabeth as she took steady breaths calming her anger. "Was he always like that?"

"Yeah pretty much," Elizabeth said chuckling, glancing over at him. "But he can be sweet to, when he wants to."

Jeremy nodded as she said that, looking at her and keeping his focus on her. She knew he had a lot of questions for her and she had a lot of half-truths to give him as answers, and it had to happen sooner or later. Still, she wasn't going to start the conversations—she would just answer the questions that Jeremy asked her as best as she could.

"Is that why you dated him? Because he was sweet?" Jeremy asked and Elizabeth sighed stopping at a red light.

"There were a lot of reasons I dated Damon, but none of those matter now because he's old news." Elizabeth said smiling at Jeremy as he nodded.

The two made it to her house a little before dusk because Elizabeth had decided to pick up pizza, and a few horror movies. Elizabeth and Jeremy sat on her couch a blanket covering the two as she laughed at him for jumping because of the movie.

"Stop it that thing was freaky." Jeremy said throwing some popcorn at her and she laughed.

"That was so adorable though, do it again?" Elizabeth said and Jeremy laughed shaking his head and Elizabeth smiled and threw popcorn out and Jeremy caught it in his mouth and she smiled.

"So you and Damon…how long did you guys date?" Jeremy asked and Elizabeth sighed a little. "We don't have to talk about it if you don't want to."

Jeremy wanted to take it back when he realized that the question had made her a little sad. Elizabeth smiled it off though and shook her head, trying to make sure the half truth wasn't too off base since she was supposed to be 18 right then…not that Damon was exactly a moral person to begin with…

"No, it's okay really." Elizabeth said as Jeremy pulled her legs on top of his lap. "Damon and I dated for a few years actually."

Elizabeth worded it like that because it was mostly true—the few years to her was just more like a couple decades. Jeremy looked at her nodding; she must have been pretty young when they first started dating.

"Why did you guys break up?" He asked rubbing her legs and she closed her eyes feeling a little calmer.

"Damon wasn't the best boyfriend…he cheated a lot, and I just couldn't put up with his crap anymore so I left him." She said and Jeremy nodded. "Have you been to visit Vikki?"

Elizabeth knew she was catching Jeremy a little off guard but she really wanted to know. Vikki meant a lot to Jeremy and Elizabeth still wanted to be her friend—besides, she felt guilty about Vikki being in the hospital because Damon and Cecily had put her there. Jeremy nodded as Elizabeth watched him become a little uncomfortable smiling a little.

"She's doing better. They don't know when she'll get out though, and Tyler still hasn't gone to see her." Jeremy said bitterly and Elizabeth nodded.

"Tyler yeah…did you see Tyler any today?" Elizabeth asked hoping Damon hadn't killed him and she was relieved when Jeremy nodded and sighed.

"Yeah, he was hitting on some girls. I swear it's like he doesn't even care about Vikki." Jeremy said and Elizabeth frowned.

"Well Vikki's lucky because you care about her…a lot." Elizabeth said and Jeremy saw how Elizabeth's face fell.

Jeremy smiled and pulled her onto his lap surprising her. He knew that she was feeling a little jealous of how much he cared about Vikki and he wanted her to know that he was quite close to her too. He hadn't met anyone like Elizabeth before and he really didn't know how to word it to her, but she seemed receptive enough.

"Yeah, well I care about you too." He said his fingers brushing along her cheek, and Elizabeth smiled and wrapped her arms around his neck.

"I care about you too." She said kissing him and Jeremy laid her down on the couch, kissing her gently.

xx

"Did you guys know that there was a comet coming around tonight?" Matthew asked as he zipped up his jacket.

Cecily smiled at him, nodding slowly. "Yeah…Stefan and I knew."

She and Stefan had been arguing a little when she got the call that Matthew's mother was coming to pick him up. He had watched as Cecily and Stefan began to talk about Elena and he noticed something—he noticed that Cecily was jealous. There were things he had picked up from TV and from movies, and he knew that there was something else between Cecily and Stefan that they weren't sharing with him.

"Are you going to watch it? Mom promised she'd watch it with me, and so I know it'll happen—it's Dad that doesn't follow through with promises." Matthew explained to them, smiling when Cecily knelt in front of him to ruffle his hair and fix his coat. "You're a good nanny."

Cecily smiled and tapped his nose with her finger. "Thanks for the vote of confidence, Matty."

"You two should watch it together." Matthew suggested, and then looked up at the door as a knock sounded. "That's probably my mother."

"I'll get it." Stefan said hurriedly.

He was just as nervous about what Matthew had said as Cecily was—if the nine year-old could catch on that they liked each other, then so could everyone else around them. Besides, how was he going to tell Cecily he wanted to watch the comet with her when she had Patrick? Elena was going to be there watching it with most of the town and there would be a candle lighting ceremony and everything and he needed Elena…he felt drawn to her…but he missed how things used to be with Cecily.

"Mrs. Grey." Stefan greeted the business woman.

She smiled at him as Matthew and Cecily came up to them. "Stefan. There's my boy—so how are you? Did you have a good day? I'll make sure that you have a key tomorrow, Cecily."

"I like Cess." Matthew admitted nodding, taking his mother by the hand.

"He already gave you a nickname—that's a good sign." Mrs. Grey told Cecily, smiling as Cecily did. "You both have a nice night and I'll see you tomorrow?"

"Absolutely." Cecily replied and she looked at Matthew. "Sweet dreams tonight, Matty."

"You too, Cess." Matthew responded and then he and his mother were off to the car.

Cecily and Stefan waved at them, both of them glancing at each other when Stefan closed the door. It was just the two of them and it was definitely getting dark, meaning they needed to head to the ceremony to watch the comet. At the same time, once Stefan opened his mouth to propose the idea that she go with him, Cecily had already opened up her mouth to speak.

"You should probably go meet Elena." Cecily said, heading into the kitchen.

Stefan sighed, noting her jealousy. "Really? We're talking about Elena again?"

"Oh, I'm sorry…is her name not Elena? I mean it could be Katherine—can't tell them apart." Cecily responded, grabbing a packet of blood out of the fridge. "Sorry…that was uncalled for. I bet Elena is nothing like Katherine."

"She isn't." Stefan told her, taking the packet from her and setting it on the counter. "Cecily, just talk to me."

"Stefan…I've never been good at talking things out, all right? Klaus taught me to go for what I wanted, and to keep myself safe and it's safer for me not to talk." Cecily told him, reaching for the packet of blood and sighing when he shook his head and moved it farther out of his reach. "Don't you want to watch the comet with Elena?"

Stefan shook his head. "No…I want to watch the comet with you like we did 145 years ago, Cecily."

Honestly Cecily didn't know why she was surprised that he had remembered about that—she certainly had. They knew which comet was making an appearance and they knew they had watched it together just the two of them last time it had come around before Elizabeth. It was the one thing that Cecily and Stefan really shared on their own and it was one thing Cecily didn't want to have to give up.

Cecily looked Stefan in the eye. "But what about Elena? I mean you found her, and she's good for you, and you like her, and she's everything you're trying to walk away from, and—"

He cut her off by crashing his lips into hers, catching her completely off guard and yet not giving her the space to pull away. It seemed like the perfect way to stop her babbling and for just a moment Stefan felt close to her again. Her lips moving against his, her hand cupping his face—so he wormed his fingers into her hair and held her close until he felt her resist and the moment for him was over. Stefan wasn't going to force anything on her…this was her call.

"Stefan, I can't." Cecily whispered, her lips brushing against his as she spoke. "I promised myself that I would let you move forward with your life and I don't want you to move backwards, okay? Let's just…let's just watch the comet here, all right? I'd like to watch it with you."

Stefan nodded and smiled, hiding his disappointment well. "Yeah…I'd like for this to be our tradition."

"Me too." Cecily admitting, grabbing the packet of blood and then pointed out to the back lawn. "Shall we?"

xx

Elizabeth sighed as she glanced at Jeremy asleep on her couch. She needed to wake him up because they were going to go to Mystic Grill before they watched the comet, but he looked so peaceful on the couch. There was just something about him sleeping there that made her feel so calm and so she decided to let him wake up on his own…almost.

Elizabeth smiled and then walked towards the mess on her coffee table. She gathered up their glasses and the empty pizza box which made Jeremy wake up a little. He watched as Elizabeth cleaned up their mess smiling, noticing she had changed clothes. She had changed out of her dress and put on a short frilled white skirt and a dark red blouse. She had curled her hair as well, making Jeremy smile at how beautiful she was.

"You shouldn't stare," Elizabeth said smiling and Jeremy chuckled. "Are you still wanting to go to the Grill? I mean if you'd rather do something else its fine."

She sat down on the coffee table and smiled at him, Jeremy smiling back and then sitting up to crack his back. He'd actually napped rather well, but it was a couch and not nearly as comfortable as he had been hoping for.

"Of course I still want to go to the Grill—whenever you're ready I'm ready." He told her, Elizabeth smiling and nodding before she sighed and stood up.

"Well I'm ready now so let's go." She said and Jeremy smiled standing up following Elizabeth out to her car.

Elizabeth and Jeremy walked into the grill, Elizabeth spotting Tyler playing pull with his friends, a bandage on his neck. He was hiding what she had done to him and she didn't really want to be reminded of it nor near him after what she had done. It was almost too much of a hassle and she just didn't want to have to talk to him or pretend to be interested in his wound.

"Wonder what happened to him." Jeremy said looking over at Tyler and Elizabeth shrugged looking away as Jeremy looked at her.

"Hey look a table, let's sit there." She said dragging Jeremy to a table that was farthest away from Tyler.

Jeremy smiled at Elizabeth as she adjusted herself on the seat, becoming nervous. Elizabeth never got nervous, and now being here with Jeremy she felt incredibly human and that was new for her. She had been around for a while now and she had gotten so used to being in her own skin and now suddenly Jeremy had her feeling…nervous.

"Are you hungry?" Jeremy asked catching Elizabeth off guard and she looked at him forgetting he didn't know she was a vampire.

"No I already fe—I mean we already ate pizza I'm full." Elizabeth said giving him a nervous laugh and Jeremy smiled at her and Elizabeth chewed on her lip.

"Elizabeth!" Elizabeth turned to see Caroline running over to her and Elizabeth smiled at her as she stood beside Jeremy.

"Hey Caroline," Elizabeth said smiling as Caroline caught her breath.

"Okay, so I was wondering since I'm desperate if you could possibly join the cheerleading team?" She asked and Jeremy choked on his drink and Elizabeth laughed.

"Please just say 'yes'—I mean you fit the criteria: you're hot, you're peppy and you look like you're loud—no offense." Caroline said and Jeremy was looking at Elizabeth holding back his laughs.

Elizabeth shot him a look then turned back to Caroline. "Thank you for calling me hot and of course I'll join."

Caroline squealed and wrapped her arms around Elizabeth's neck. "Thank you, thank you, thank you!" Caroline chanted then pulled back. "Okay so practice is tomorrow—just wear something you would if you were exercising and you're good to go."

Elizabeth nodded and then Caroline excused herself to go looking for someone 'tall, hot and mysterious'. It made her smile a little because it seemed like such a Caroline thing to say and then Elizabeth turned back to Jeremy. He had this look on his face and she just kind of looked at him, wishing he'd say something already.

"Cheerleader," Jeremy said looking at Elizabeth and she smiled shrugging.

"What? Caroline was practically begging and I'm a nice person." Elizabeth said and Jeremy chuckled shaking his head.

"You really are one of a kind Liz." Jeremy said smiling at her and Elizabeth blushed.

"How so?" She asked putting her hands on the table and Jeremy looked her in the eyes.

"You just are…I honestly have never met anyone else like you." He said and Elizabeth smiled and he leaned in kissing her, pulling back smiling after a moment and Elizabeth closed her eyes. "I'm going to use the bathroom, I'll be right back."

Elizabeth sighed as Jeremy headed for the bathroom. She looked around searching for Stefan or Cecily, wondering where they were. Honestly she had expected them to be here—or at least Stefan. It had seemed like Stefan had wanted to get cozy with Elena and she thought maybe they'd be watching the comet together. Cecily had Patrick to potentially watch the comet with and there just seemed to be no logical explanation as to why neither of them were in sight already. What could they possibly be doing?

"Vikki what are you doing here?" Elizabeth heard Jeremy say and her head snapped in the direction of his voice.

"Fighting with Robert about my schedule, you think getting ripped up by a rabid animal would merit an extra sick day." Vikki said and Elizabeth frowned feeling bad for her.

"You feeling okay?" He asked her.

"I hurt," Vikki said and Elizabeth frowned knowing that Vikki was using Jeremy for drugs, yet again.

"The doctor gave you something right?" Jeremy asked and Vikki smiled.

"Yeah that kids stuff—nothing with an 'O' in it." Jeremy laughed and Vikki smiled Elizabeth frowning. "I think they were on to me."

"Here," Jeremy said and Elizabeth watched as he pulled out a bottle of pills, handing them over to Vikki. "Knock yourself out—literally."

"Thanks Jer," She said taking some and Elizabeth watched as Jeremy straightened up, like he was going to ask her something.

"So are you gonna watch the comet later?" Jeremy asked and Elizabeth was up, leaving a twenty on the table but she wasn't quick enough to get away from the two before Vikki responded to him.

"I hadn't really thought about it, but I can be talked into it." Elizabeth pushed open the door and left, feeling hurt and jealous.

Elizabeth sighed crossing her arms over her chest walking down the street as she spotted Cecily, frowning at her. There she was and Stefan wasn't with her and neither was Patrick and Elizabeth really just needed her friend. Cecily smiled at her as she saw Elizabeth approaching her, opening up her arms and letting Elizabeth fall into them. She had actually come with Stefan, but he was grabbing them something and meeting her at the grill, knowing that she wanted to spend some time with the rest of the town too.

"You look upset, Lizzie." Cecily told her, kissing the top of her head. "What's up?"

Elizabeth shook her head slowly. "Nothing, I just…I think Jeremy still kind of has feelings for Vikki—I mean maybe I'm just jealous but I don't know. She uses him and he doesn't see it."

"Damn girl, you have it bad." Cecily told her as Elizabeth pulled back out of her arms and pouted, laughing when Elizabeth pushed on her shoulder a bit.

"I do not!" Elizabeth said as a blush rose in her cheeks. "I just like him a lot."

"I can tell." Cecily replied with a smile and then she chewed on her lip a moment. "Want to hear good news?"

Elizabeth smiled and nodded. "I could use some good news right about now."

"Stefan and I are watching the comet together—in fact we already saw it a little at the mansion, we just wanted to get a better view…well that and I wanted to jump him and around people I have to stop myself from doing that." Cecily said, her words simply spilling out of her mouth.

Cecily was rather happy about it—excited even. She had missed being close to Stefan and she wished that the two of them could find the same common ground. Cecily just didn't know how to get it back without feeling like she was doing something for him that wasn't good for him. He came to Mystic Falls to get away from his past and she was his past…she couldn't force herself on him no matter how in love with him she still was.

"You so want to get him back!" Elizabeth teased and laughed when Cecily rolled her eyes but most definitely blushed.

"I do not!" Cecily hushed her, smiling at her and shrugging. "I'm just glad he and I are still friends, you know?"

Elizabeth nodded at her. "Yeah, I get it."

"Good." Cecily told her and then she wrapped her arm around her friend and pulled her close. "Look…I know you don't want to hear this from me, but I really do think that you should try and make this work with Jeremy. Damon hasn't changed for the better yet, and though I know you love him and you always will, I think you should let Jeremy show you what a real, solid, loving, healthy relationship is like. Then if you still feel like you have two men in your heart, you should pick—choose between Damon and Jeremy. Make Damon work for it…he can't be allowed to continue thinking he can have anything he wants just because he wants it—he has to start being more aware of other peoples' feelings."

Elizabeth looked at Cecily, Cecily nodding at her and Elizabeth sighed nodding a little.

"I know I should but…it's hard to do, I mean Jeremy is such an amazing guy, but Damon won't let it happen. You saw him today and as soon as I start getting closer to Jeremy, he's going to do something stupid…and he's going to hurt me." Elizabeth said and Cecily frowned a little as Stefan walked over, and he wrapped his arm around Elizabeth, kissing her hair.

"Elizabeth you live your life—you've got a long one…let me handle Damon." Stefan said and Elizabeth nodded.

"If you see Jer, tell him I went home because I wasn't feeling well, and to call me." Elizabeth said with a smile, Stefan and Cecily both nodded, watching as she walked away.

Elizabeth walked down the street, watching as everyone around her lit candles, and laughed while watching the sky. She sighed a little, pulling her jacket close to herself. She still loved Damon, there was no doubt she did, but she wasn't going to sit back and let him treat her like she didn't matter—like he didn't care about her—because he did, and she knew he did…but she wasn't going to wait any longer. Damon had been playing this game with her for centuries, and now that she had met someone like Jeremy: kind, sweet, stable…she wasn't going to let him ruin it for her, no way, no how.

"No, please don't."

Elizabeth's head snapped in the direction of Vikki's voice, to see Damon holding her by the elbow, both of them standing on a building high enough where the fall would kill her. Damon let go of Vikki's elbow and she screamed, Damon laughing grabbing onto her again and Elizabeth growled, and was in front of Damon within seconds. Damon saw Elizabeth and he grinned glancing at Vikki as she cried.

"Lizzie, help me please." She sobbed and Elizabeth looked at Damon as he grinned at her.

"Howdy Liz. Here to save your little druggie of a friend?" He asked and Elizabeth growled, Damon grinning more, liking the effect he had made. "I love it when you growl at me. How about I let her fall and you and I have some roof top sex like old times?"

"Damon, what the Hell do you think you are doing?" Cecily snapped, Elizabeth and Damon both turning to her, too busy with each other to have realized she was there, along with Stefan. "Let the poor girl go."

Damon looked down below them on the ledge on top of the building. "Really? Okay."

He went to let Vikki go and she cried out, Damon instead throwing her to the rooftop, Stefan leaning down to her as Cecily stepped up to him, anger on her face. Elizabeth was hurt and Stefan was scared, but Cecily was just pissed off—she hadn't come back into town just to have Damon ruin everything by torturing Vikki.

"What exactly do you gain from this, Damon?" Cecily asked him.

Damon laughed a little. "I'm glad you asked, Cess."

Just like that, Damon started talking to Vikki, asking her all sorts of questions about what had attacked her in the forest…who. When she started to say that it was Damon, Damon compelled her—told her that it was Stefan, and Stefan stood there, defenseless to stop him.

"Damon, stop it!" Elizabeth yelled at him, hurt that Damon would do this to his own brother. "Stop lying to her!"

Cecily was to Damon in a moment, her fingers wrapped around his neck. "This isn't what we came back for, Damon—this isn't going to happen."

"What are you?" Vikki asked Cecily, sobbing now, scared out of her mind.

Elizabeth hurried over to her, looking at Cecily when Cecily told her not to compel her. At first Elizabeth didn't think that that made any sense—not to compel Vikki—but then she realized that Cecily was cleaning up this mess. It was in that moment that Elizabeth realized that Cecily and Damon were keeping things from everyone else and that made the pain set in even more.

"Stefan chose his lifestyle and you are going to respect it, Damon." Cecily told him, Damon choking a little bit. "Hold up your left hand if you understand me."

Damon did, Cecily letting go of his neck and going over to Vikki and Elizabeth, Vikki still afraid of her, but Cecily compelling Vikki just with her voice. She was so old that compelling for her was something that even Damon couldn't break, and Elizabeth still trusted her enough to fix it…even with that sinking feeling in her gut.

"Vikki…Sweetheart? You were attacked by an animal. You took some pills, it made you trip out, and you wandered out here to the rooftop. You freaked out, but you're fine now…go back inside." Cecily told her calmly.

Vikki nodded and then suddenly she was calm, laughing a little and then heading inside after telling them all she was just fine. Cecily whirled around to Damon and Damon gave her a look, Stefan explaining to him that he wanted to be far away from him and Damon told him that he was glad to be home…that he was staying for a while.

"If you stay, Damon, this isn't happening again—I will break you." Cecily warned him. "God, Damon…I love you, but you can't do this. I try to stand up for you because you're my friend, but if you do this again…don't do this again."

Cecily shook her head sadly and ran her fingers through her hair, moving out of Stefan's reach and heading towards the Salvatore Mansion. She just wanted a place to clear her head and place to think—she and Damon had come here for a reason and she felt like what Damon did was her fault. He was her responsibility and if he screwed up and exposed them…then it was all on her head.

xx

Elizabeth glared at Damon as Cecily walked away, Stefan slowly following after her.

"So, we're alone again…how about that rooftop sex?" Damon asked and Elizabeth shook her head.

"You have no care about anything in this world Damon…you're a heartless dick and I don't want anything to do with you." Elizabeth said and Damon chuckled a little smiling, and took a step towards Elizabeth, putting himself right in front of her.

"You forget Elizabeth…no matter what you say, or what you do, you'll always be mine." Damon said his breath warm on Elizabeth's face, as he slowly pressed his lips against hers.

Elizabeth gripped Damon's shirt, and then pushed him away, sending him flying against the air conditioner, breaking it.

"I'm not yours Damon…not anymore." Elizabeth said and she left, leaving Damon in the ruble with his thoughts.

Elizabeth walked down the street, heading for her Porsche, taking a breath as she spotted Jeremy leaning against it. She could run the other way and just go home by foot, leaving her Porsche here, or she could man up and talk to Jeremy. Either one seemed bad enough to her, but she couldn't risk her baby getting stolen…so she took a breath and headed towards the car, her heels giving away her silent approach and Jeremy turned to her and smiled a little.

"Stefan told me you were sick, but then I saw the car and I was pretty sure you wouldn't leave it here." Jeremy said, towering over her and she nodded.

"Yeah…I was thinking about it though to tell you the truth." She said softly, twisting the keys in her hand, avoiding Jeremy's eyes.

"So…why are you getting Stefan to lie to me? And why did you skip out on me at the grill?" Jeremy asked and Elizabeth sighed.

She could compel him right now, to get him out of her way and forget all of this happened—take the easy way out like she did so often now—but she really liked Jeremy…and she wanted to try…she owed herself that. Cecily was right…she had to try this and she had to let someone in who actually cared about her well being.

"I…over heard you and Vikki talking." She said looking up at Jeremy and he nodded slowly.

"Ab—"

"No," Elizabeth interrupted him, shaking her head "Jer, I get it.…you love Vikki. I know you do and I'm getting all clingy—we aren't even dating! Be with Vikki…she makes you happy…and you deserve to be happy. You're a great guy and like I said I'm…I'm messed up. I've got all these issues, and a crazy ex boyfriend…it's too much for someone to handle."

Elizabeth was shaking her head, letting the pain from her words sink in, not looking at Jeremy. She couldn't bear to meet his eyes right then because she knew they'd betray her, and then Jeremy surprised her. He grabbed her hand, tangling their fingers together.

"Liz, I don't care…you make me happy. I'll handle all your issues—screw Damon. You're too good for him, and if he tries to get in my way, I'll handle it. But I want you…I want to be with you." Jeremy said, stroking Elizabeth's cheek with his free hand, resting it on her neck.

"You mean that?" Elizabeth asked, Jeremy smiling leaning towards her.

"I mean it more than anything." He said, then pressed his lips against hers, Elizabeth wrapping her arms around his neck, laughing as he picked her up.

Damon glared; watching from the safety of the rooftops as Jeremy set Elizabeth down, giving her another kiss before they climbed into her car, driving away. Jeremy was taking her from him. She was the only thing he had left, even if she wasn't really with him and he wasn't about to let that happen…Elizabeth was his.

Note: And there you have it! A really long second chapter! More when we can! Feedback is always appreciated!