So, er, yes. I apologise for this because it started off really solid, really interesting, and potentially quite fun. Then it dissolved into 'batshit crazy'.

Disclaimer: So no. I really don't own this. In NO WAY.

Er, yes, review, if you feel it?

A/N: I've been very, very busy for a week, so I'll get back to all reviews for other stories that are missing a reply at some point as well. Sorry about that.

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Eyes on Fire

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It was dark, and Bonnie was afraid. She wanted somebody with her, anybody, she would take absolutely anything – anyone, even Sage. The sky was tinted red and blue and she just knew where she was.

The Dark Dimension. She was sat atop a nondescript roof in a part of the city that she barely remembered, but it was clear that she was there. The somewhat derelict houses, the empty rooms, the quiet streets – they all pointed to one destination.

"Bonnie!" Her head whipped around at the soft sound of his voice. He was quiet, always quiet, with his cat-like steps, a feline kind of grace, and reflexes incomparable as he moved around the room, around her. He wasn't there, however, and every time she craned her neck – over the side of the building, down to the street below, or back and forth to either side of the building – whatever building it was, that she was on.

"Where are you?" She called out finally, giving up on the curious sensations that extending her neck bought to the rest of her body.

"Down here!" And she turned again, finally rising up on her knees to look around at the room that she found herself in. When had she... she was inside. How had she got inside?

"Where?"

"The basement, damnit, Bonnie, it's not difficult." Surprisingly, his tone was more amused than irritated. "Very funny, you asshole."

"Is it sunny up there?" His voice was a mere echo, and she was just a tad confused.

"Why?"

"I don't have my ring, and I need to show you this."

"Hey, guess what Damon? I'm pretty sure I'm dreaming, here – that is, of course, unless I can suddenly teleport. I think you're good, with or without the ring."

"Why thank you, little one." And suddenly he was in front of her, his hand reaching out to hers and god; he looked like a beautiful kind of hell. "Come with me." As soon as her fingers touched his, they were running, full pelt into a black doorway, and Bonnie hadn't expected the stairs. She stumbled, and just as quickly as she had fallen, his arms were around her, and he was warm and comfortable, and oh, god.

"Ow." She managed to say the words, but Damon was grinning down at her.

"Well," He smirked as his left hand found her right forearm and gently brushed the cobwebs from her skin. It tickled. "I genuinely didn't expect this kind of fun."

It might have been a trick of the light, but Bonnie could have sworn that he was smiling. Not smirking, not sneering, but genuinely smiling, with his eyes all lit up like a sparkler in a birthday Pina Colada.

"But, seeing as we're down here-" His arms were around her waist before she could speak, and his fingertips were brushing the space between her jeans and her shirt, his lips pressing a path across her cheeks, inching towards her lips in a dreadfully teasing way. Bonnie momentarily forgot her name.

"Y-you had something to show me?" If she was dreaming, she really did not want this to end. But he'd told her he had something to show her. His fingers merely continued their gentle path across her skin. "Damon, please?"

She glanced up to look at his face again, and saw that she had been right. He did look like hell. His skin was pale, almost plastic looking, with none of the usual olive-tanned quality to it, and even his pupils looked ragged and tired.

"Yeah, this is it." He pulled her to her feet, their fingers still laced together, and Bonnie shivered as they neared the end of her corridor. His other arm wrapped around her, just to make her feel a little safer, and Bonnie decided that she liked her dream-Damon. He was kind to her, and she would quite happily stay like this for the rest of her life... "In here."

"What-what is it?" She was afraid to look, because he was leaning back and away from the heavy, oak door. "Damon, don't let me g-"

But as she wheeled around, he was gone, and she could hear scratching from behind the door. Well, this was new, and really quite disconcerting.

"D-Damon?" The voice she heard was scratchy, broken and almost as dead as she had assumed. "Is that... you?" She was unsure if she truly wanted to know the answer.

"Bonnie?" And suddenly, her heart was pounding and her body was hot. She needed to see him. He was trapped somewhere, and she needed to help him. "Bonnie, help me?" Panic ripped through her at the despair in those three words.

"Damon?" She pressed herself to the door, trying to rise up on tiptoe to see through the door, but it was stretching upward, out of her sight, her reach. "Damon!" And now she was screaming, and he was begging for help, and she knew, she just knew that this was, in some way, real.

Bonnie shot up, completely awake, and expecting to be sitting in bed, eyes wide and hair utterly dishevelled. Instead, she was sitting on the sill of her window, legs parted slightly in the breeze and staring into space. Her feet were hanging out of the window itself, hands braced on the frame, and on her shoulders sat a heavy, heavy backpack.

"Damon!" She knew she had to help him.

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Elena glanced at the computer screen, and let out a soft smile.

"Happy Birthday Bonnie" She smirked into the phone, "But why no guys on your invite list...not even Stefan or Matt... or..." She paused to let out a low whistle, "Not even Damon?" Elena would have sworn that Bonnie was still crushing on Damon.

"No!" Bonnie sounded so irritated, and squeaked at such a high pitch that Elena had to pull the receiver from her ear, fearing for her hearing. "I'm not exactly pleased with Stefan at the moment – he's the reason that Damon's not on the list."

"What?" This time it was Bonnie who was tugging the phone from her ear, fearing for her eardrums "What's Stefan done now?"

"Didn't you get my message?"

"No," Even though Elena couldn't see Bonnie, she was shaking her head at the generally irritating behaviour of her boyfriend. "What's he done?"

"Well... basically... Stefan had an argument with Damon, and took his ring. So he can't come out in the sunshine, and he's totally confined to the Basement of the Boarding House, and well, obviously, I'm not inviting Stefan, unless he makes up with his brother, and Damon can't come because he doesn't have his ring... and..." She spoke very fast until she needed to take a breath, "E..." And now it was a little bit of a pathetic whine, "I really want to try and..." She stopped, and waited for Elena to fill in the blanks.

"You really want to try something with Damon, don't you?" Finally.

Even though it would be weird for the petite, ginger Psychic to bang the dark, damaged Vampire, it looked like both of them wanted it. Ever since their return from the Dark Dimension, where Stefan had picked up the Kitsune's gift of magic flowers and turned back into a human, it – something had been brewing.

Elena couldn't quite work it out – she had thought that Damon was addicted to her, and it had come as a total surprise when he had announced that his intentions with Elena were nothing but pure. But, and this was a direct quote; "your available friends are just that. Available."

It still stung just thinking about it.

"I do, E... but I'm really, really worried! I'll screw it up, and I know that... you know, in the Double D, you guys did some stuff... and... well..." Bonnie's voice shook in exactly the way Elena had expected it to – with embarrassment, with fear in her heart and her head, and Elena didn't like it.

Bonnie was her best friend, and up until now, she had been lonely. She just wanted somebody to care just as much as she did, and though Elena didn't think Damon had the capacity to really, honestly care about anyone but himself, she wondered whether Bonnie had worked her way in sideways.

It was all in the sidelong glances, the way he held the door open for her, or watched her as she hovered nervously at their kitchen counter holding a mug of tea – because Stefan didn't like coffee, so there was only tea in the house – waiting for Elena to be ready to leave so that they could make their way to god only knew where. He liked to watch his redhead girl, pale and interesting as she watched him back, right out of the corners of her eyes.

"He didn't tell me that he'd taken Damon's ring." Elena seethed for a moment, "He would do this. It's so typical of him." She paused, "I wouldn't be surprised if vervain had been in there somewhere as well."

"Well... I don't really know." Bonnie shrugged and let out a noise into the mouthpiece.

"But still, why did I not know this? How did you find out?"

Bonnie let out a soft noise and swallowed audibly.

"He... uhm... Damon came into my dreams last night."

"What?" Elena was suddenly filled with the strange sense of dread that only came from the moment a person realised that they had just asked from potentially sexual information which they did not really want to know. "On second thought, don't tell me."

"No... No, nothing like that, thankfully." Although Elena wasn't sure, from the waver of her best friend's voice, that she was entirely telling the truth. "I was... well, obviously, I was fast asleep, and I think I was back in the Double D, you know, the sky was in twilight, and everything looked... a little bit derelict. I was on a roof, and then I wasn't, and I was going down stairs," she let out a breath, as though she were steeling herself, and Elena let out a quiet 'ummhmm' as an indication for her to continue. "Well, all of a sudden, I'm in the boarding house, and I'm running down the stairs and straight through the door to the basement."

"Where does Damon fit in?"

"I'm getting to that!" Bonnie laughed shrilly, and Elena laughed too. "Anyway, I get into the basement, and what do I see? Him." She let out a low sigh, and her tone changed to one of dread and a little bit of worry, "And he looked sick, E, really, really sick. Like, he was going to die. And I don't know if that's just the projection he was giving out, or whether it's because that's how he is without blood, or what, but he looked so weak, and then he grabbed my hand, pulled me to him, and said 'help me'. That was it, just asking for help. And then I like, exploded awake, and I realised that I was hanging halfway out of my window, wearing like, that chemise you bought me for Christmas, and practically flashing half of the neighbourhood!" Elena wanted to giggle but knew she shouldn't.

"You were sleepwalking?"

"Yeah. I had a backpack and everything, and it was just like... ridiculous. Like, how the hell am I supposed to save him? I weigh like, nothing, and I really don't have a proper handle on my powers – especially since we came back from the Dar-D-Double D."

Bonnie had never been able to call it the Dark Dimension. She had scars from their escape from the Shi-No-Shi, and it occasionally came back to haunt her dreams. Elena was a lot more comfortable with the entire thing – but, Bonnie reasoned, that was because she had been in limbo, purgatory, heaven before. Nothing could faze the stunning, blonde girl.

She was still stunned at the heightened senses that Bonnie held within her, however, the voices that she occasionally heard the genuinely frightening dreams and premonitions that the tiny girl faced almost every day.

"You know, Bonnie... I'll help you." And Elena didn't just mean to rescue Damon, though of course she would do her damndest to get him out of the basement. She meant that whatever Bonnie tried, Elena would help her with in her attempts to get Damon, just like Bonnie had done for Elena, all those months ago. "Come over in ten minutes, and we can head to their place together, okay?"

"Sure. Love you, E."

"You too, B."

They put the phone down at the same time.

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Bonnie was there in less than fifteen minutes. She had left her house almost immediately, pausing only to pick up her black leather jacket, wrapping it around her shoulders and sprinting out of the house with her bag.

Before she could even raise her hand to knock on Elena's door, it flew open, and Elena, ethereal in her beauty, wide eyed and dressed in a mixture of white and cream, she looked stunning even to Bonnie's accustomed eyes.

"Come on. Stefan's not home and he's not answering his cell. So yeah. We're going in." She sounded as though she was trying her hardest to be one of Charlie's Angels, but Bonnie could barely hold in her laughter. "Oh, shush." Elena was laughing now as well. Their smiles were contagious for a moment, and then they both returned to the real world, and glanced between each other, identical grins sliding from their faces like ink on plastic.

"So, we're going in?" Bonnie smirked, and Elena waited. "And we're both going into the basement?"

"I'm not letting you go down for him on your own." There was a pause after Elena had finished, and Bonnie could only fill it with giggles at the sort-of innuendo. "Very funny, you whore."

"Ha-ha." She was still giggling as they reached the boarding house, but when they reached the threshold, she fell silent, the oppressive mood quickly beating down on her psychic impulses and making her feel just a little bit sick.

Oh, who the hell was she kidding. She was about to hurl, and nobody could stop it coming, even if they were around to do it.

"I think..." Bonnie pulled her arm back from where it was linked with Elena's and threw her hand over her mouth as she drew away from the front door and collapsed to her knees, throwing up over the side of the front deck as Elena stood, horrified.

"Bonnie?" Silence broken only by another retch from the background. "Are you okay?"

"It's the... I can feel him, and he's not good, Elena." Bonnie sounded so worried, she sounded scared that as she looked over at Elena, her best friend could see the trauma her Powers were causing her.

"Maybe you should wait out here, B." Elena ran her hand over her best friend's hair, trying to calm her just a little bit.

"No!" Though the action of waving Elena away sent Bonnie's head reeling. "He asked for me!" She stopped and looked up at the shaky form of Elena as she was standing beside her. "He wanted me."

"Okay..." Elena stopped trying to fight the stubborn little girl and instead held out her hand. "I'm so washing your face beforehand, though."

And that is how, ten minutes later, both Bonnie McCullough and Elena Gilbert were slowly making their way down to the basement, narrowly avoiding the multitude of spiders webs, full and empty boxes... and the occasional small woodland creature.

"I genuinely despise this basement," Elena groaned as she tripped down the bottom step and threw her hand into a thick cobweb, "So many bad memories."

"I've never been down here before, but it looks the same as my dreams..." Bonnie glanced up at Elena, then over the other girl's shoulder to see the thick wooden door at the end of the hallway. "This is it-"

A low groan sounded from the door, and Bonnie's pace picked up tenfold.

"Damon!" Elena called out to him first.

"B-Bonnie?" His voice came out in a rasp and Bonnie practically threw herself at the door in order to see him. Thankfully, this time, the door didn't stretch and extend all the way. "You came?"

"Well duh," At the sound of her voice, Damon's head slowly tilted up, and he smirked as he saw the prettiest sight he had seen in a while – wide, worried eyes and wild, curly red hair framing a panicked face and a hand reaching out to him through the window-gap in the door. "Are you okay?"

"I'm not at my best, I have to admit." He murmured and she let out a soft laugh as he forced himself to his feet and dragged himself across the room to clutch at the wooden door.

"Always the same, aren't you?"

"I do try." He frowned as she pulled away from the door, having enjoyed the soft caress of her breath on his cheeks. She returned only seconds later, pulling and shoving at the door which was locked, and locked tight.

"Damnit! It's locked."

Both Elena and Damon probably could have told her that without her nearly pulling her arm out of its socket, but they could shut up for now. Bonnie brought her hands up to her face and rubbed at it furiously, angrily, hoping that it would give her some kind of idea as to what was going on.

"If he had blood..." Elena started, "He'd have the strength to break out."

Bonnie looked up at her best friend and honestly? She could have kissed her.

Damon, on the other hand, did not like where this was going. If it was Elena who had spoken, it would be Elena who offered her blood, so he wasn't particularly looking forward to the next few moments.

That's why he was sure that his breathing stopped as he watched Bonnie shrug her jacket off, hand it to Elena and roll up her long sleeve.

"What're you doing?" Both Elena and Damon asked the question of the psychic who had serious concentration on her face. It didn't take long for Damon to realise her intentions, however.

"Damnit, Bonnie, no." She glanced up at him and raised one eyebrow in a challenge, "I'm not letting you risk... Bonnie, I won't let you do it." Though he didn't sound as though he was entirely convinced of his words.

"Oh, Bite me." She muttered, then, laughing, looked up between her best friend and the one she was in love with. "If he takes my blood, he won't be weak anymore, right?"

"I-I guess so..." Elena looked to Damon for confirmation; he was nodding slowly, though he looked a little bit worried.

"I don't know if I'll have the strength to stop, Bonnie." He murmured, before reaching out his hand to touch hers. Cool skin met warm skin, and a quiet shiver ran through the pair of them. Damon was worried, but he wouldn't let on. "I don't want you to do this. To feel as if you... have to do this."

He was honestly thinking that this girl was going to be the death of him. Or him for her.

"I've never had to do anything, when it came to you," Bonnie smirked as she held out her hand, freezing suddenly as she heard something upstairs.

"What?"

"Stefan's back." She hissed quietly, "Elena, he'll come down here and try to stop me, and I'm not risking that."

"I'll go up and check," Elena nodded, "Don't do anything unless I'm down here, okay?"

"Okay," Bonnie nodded, still trying to ready herself for what was about to come. Elena disappeared up the stairs, and Bonnie looked around the hallway as she and Damon were left alone. "Let me just move this box, and I'll be able to reach through the door properly." She nodded at him, and damn if Damon didn't feel just a little bit of a thrill at the certainty in her voice.

Two minutes later, she had reached her hand through the door and was bracing her other hand on the solid frame.

"Bonnie, are you sure about this?" Damon spoke as he heard Elena and Stefan coming back down the stairs. "You shouldn't do anything unless Elena's here, like you promised, remember?"

"She knew I wouldn't wait. And anyway, Stefan would try to talk me out of it, wouldn't he?"

"But... if they're longer than you expect-"

"This is probably very stupid, but damnit, Damon, I trust you."

His lips parted, dropped open in surprise, and Bonnie took that as her cue to thrust her arm through the gap once again. In a half second, he was holding her hand and looking up into her eyes.

"Are you sure?" His fingers were tracing patterns on her palm, and she was unable to speak. She simply nodded, and very, very slowly, he lowered his lips to her wrist, ran his tongue across her skin, and, before she could even blink, his fangs had punctured her skin.

Jesus. Damn. Fuck, that felt good.

"I swear, Stefan, I don't even know what you were doing." There was a pause as Elena tugged him down the stairs and he stumbled as she stopped dead to look at the back of Bonnie's head.

Damned ginger psychic witch.

"Oh, you cannot even listen for thirty seconds, McCullough."

"You know it!" Bonnie was deceptively chirpy, her head already feeling somewhat light as she stood balanced on the box. "I'm fine. But Stefan?"

"What, Bonnie?" They had been short with each other since Bonnie had begun to side with Damon in the Dark Dimension.

"Give him his ring back, and stop trying to freakin' starve him, will you?"

"I... uhm, I can't." He refused to look either Bonnie or Elena in the eye.

"Give it to him!" Bonnie was quickly losing both her patience and her blood. "I'll let him drain me, You know I will."

Damon glanced up quickly, looking at Bonnie with a fair amount of concern. She simply tipped him a wink and smiled at him quickly.

"No, I really... really can't." Stefan had the good grace to look uncomfortable. "I don't have it."

At that revelation, almost everyone fell stunned into silence. Elena recovered first, with a shrill shout which left almost everyone's ears ringing.

"What do you mean you don't have it?"

"He has to have it! Who else would?" Bonnie was the next to recover, now shaking as the blood loss made her skin more translucent and her eyes lost a little bit of focus, "Oh, god... I feel a little bit faint."

All eyes turned to the tiny psychic as she stood with her head resting in one of her hands. Elena was the first to call out a warning.

"Bonnie! Bonnie. Stop now! Seriously! Damon. Stop! Stop!" But to no avail. The little one was stubborn, and Damon was overcome with bloodlust. Neither would crack, until one of them ended up on the floor.

With a short gasp, the redhead's eyes rolled into the back of her head, and her knees buckled to send her crashing to the ground. There was a sickening crunch, as, quickly, but not fast enough, Damon dropped her wrist only seconds after it had bent into a ridiculous angle.

"Oh god." And now Elena was panicking, Damon pressed up against the door and trying to help her in any way he could. Unfortunately, due to the large, locked door, he wasn't having much joy.

"Stefan, help!" Elena was leaning over her best friend as she shook with fear, "Bonnie? B-Bonnie?"

The tiny girl did not move, but, all of a sudden, Damon was yelling and the door was burning. It was a concentrated fire, however, sticking firmly to the edges of the door and burning inwards.

"It's her powers!" Damon yelled the words over the sound of the flames. "She's so highly wound... She's got no control!"

And it looked as though he was right. Her hair picked up in a swirl of wind and her eyes fluttered violently, even though she was nowhere near consciousness. Suddenly, Damon was holding her head, broken out of the basement hell that he had been trapped in for long enough.

"Bonnie, speak to me?" His fingers brushed against her forehead, feeling the sweat that was slowly beading on his forehead. "Please?"

"Stefan-" Elena pulled him up and away from the pair kneeling by the smouldering remains of the door, "Come upstairs and try to close the curtains without screwing that one up, will you?"

He pulled a face, but nodded tiredly.

"Damon, will you give us five minutes, and then come upstairs?" He glanced up to look up at her, nodding sharply and turning his attention straight back to Bonnie. He was worried, and it confused him when he felt that kind of worry, because it was just unusual for him to care.

Five minutes later, following his instructions to the letter, Damon appeared in the semi-darkness of the Boarding House living room, carrying the dishevelled mop of ginger hair that was an unconscious Bonnie McCullough.

He was hardly surprised to hear Stefan still attempting to plead his case.

"I just... I don't know where it went! I mean... we had it, but-" Elena cut across him as soon as he had begun to talk.

"...We? Seriously. What we?"

Damon's stress levels were rising as he kept shaking Bonnie's shoulders, his hands curving around them as he realised that the stress was probably not helping him think clearly. He had nearly drained her – so she would need blood. It was really that simple, and it was with a ridiculous amount of self-loathing for his idiocy that Damon bit down on his own wrist, pressing the subsequent, oozing wound to Bonnie's mouth, hoping that it would do her some kind of good.

"Just... throw some water over her. Damn psychic." Stefan spoke, rousing the wrath of both Elena and Damon at the same time.

"Stefan, shut the hell up... you're not helping anyone by being a douche." Elena was now at the point of both fury and stress and panic.

"Water might help, actually..." Damon's voice sounded from the side of the room, and both Elena and Stefan stared at the way he was gently running his hands through Bonnie's hair. "But damnit, Stefan, she's not a damn psychic. She's my damn psychic." Elena's composure was most definitely blown by that. She stopped dead and stared and Damon for a moment, utterly confused by everything that had just come from his mouth, and then let out a happy sort-of-sound, smiling widely at him before turning to look at Stefan with a scowl.

"Whatever you need to do, Damon. Now, Stefan, what the hell is going on?"

"I... er, may have been out with Tyler..." He had the good grace to look embarrassed, but that could have been the angry stare that Elena was levelling at him, making him reconsider.

"You went out with Tyler where?"

"I really cannot believe this," Damon sighed as he watched the exchange, his fingers pressed lightly to Bonnie's wrist and feeling for her pulse. It was taking longer for her to wake up than he had expected, and the uncomfortable feeling was that her blood making him want to either drink her, or try and down a hell of a lot of Scotch.

Thankfully, he chose the latter. Seconds later, he had the Scotch in his hand, and he was staring into it with a tired pair of eyes. He held it up, put the glass to his lips and downed the damn thing, looking down at the witch laying prone and still at his feet.

"I'm gonna go and get her some water." He hadn't expected either of them to look over – though he would have appreciated a little bit of the attention.

"Yeah you do that..." Elena glanced over at him for a half second, then reached out for Stefan's collar, "Now you need to tell me what's going on." His shrug simply infuriated her further.

"You know...we just went out, and we might have dropped it."

"Might have dropped it?" Elena got there first, only half-masking the furious shout which emanated from Damon as he echoed her words upon his return.

The Elder Salvatore shook his head tiredly and cracked open the bottle of water he had brought with him. Slowly, he began to pour it across Bonnie's shoulders, then, as it didn't work straight away, he switched the bottle to pour across her forehead.

With a hell of a lot of coughing and spluttering, Bonnie's eyes fluttered open and she spluttered and coughed as she tried, with heavy, heavy hands, to bat away the fading stream of water. With more than a little concern, Damon pressed his hands to either side of her head and gently had her stare into his eyes.

Stefan could clearly not handle being away from the centre of attention for a few short minutes, for just as suddenly, his voice was ringing out across the room.

"Tyler took it, okay?"

The entire room shared a single thought. Jesus Christ.

"Okay," And now Elena was talking to Stefan as though he was five, "I know you've only just returned to your normal state of humanity and everything, but let me ask you the simple thing here. Where. Is. Tyler?"

"He was with Matt." Stefan answered simply.

"Right," Elena nodded, fairly irritated by now, "And where is Matt?" Elena seriously felt like she was talking to a child from kindergarten.

Damon leaned in to Bonnie and lightly pressed his nose to her cheek so he could whisper the words into her ear. He didn't particularly care if anybody heard his words, but he cared about having his lips pressed against Bonnie's soft, translucent skin. He could smell her blood, almost taste her scent. He wanted intimacy with this girl.

"I'm really not liking my chances here." She let out a soft laugh and bowed her head, because it really, really was hurting. She didn't expect for his hands to run lightly down her shoulders and across her forearms, letting her lean back into his arms.

"He... he might be in hospital." And that, nobody had been expecting.

"Why?" Elena was now more than frantic, and Stefan more than sheepish. Damon was still rubbing gentle circles on Bonnie's skin, smiling down at her as she reclined in his arms.

"Well..." And the way he had stopped was clearly an attempt at a diversion.

"We're waiting..." Elena and Damon singsonged together.

"Well... We, er, took Tyler's car... and he was messing around, like, he grabbed the ring off me, so I tried to get it back, right, and obviously, I was driving distracted... and we maybe crashed into the sidewalk." He said the last bit very, very fast.

Oh, Jesus.

"Please, please tell me that he's not going to die."

"We like Matt, Stefan." Bonnie couldn't help but throw that into the mix, and Damon smirked at him over her shoulder.

"Mutt's good people," Damon conceded, now clinging onto Bonnie almost too tightly, just in case Stefan decided that she was next.

"I don't think he's going to... die." He paused and shook his head. "Maybe."

"Really, Stefan? Really?" Elena was pacing, cutting her eyes to Bonnie and Damon, then back at Stefan. "I'm not impressed with your conduct, Mr. Salvatore. Not one bit."

There was a long silence where everybody within earshot made noises of agreement with Elena's words.

"So, Tyler's with Matt at the hospital." Bonnie suddenly broke the silence, "And he has the ring."

"Yes..."

"Well then," Bonnie was clearly taking in more than Damon's scent as she sat in his capable hands, "You know where the ring is, don't you?"

"Look, for the last time; the last time I saw it, Tyler had it... jeez."

"Don't be an asshole, Stefan," Bonnie went to get up, knowing that she had the upper hand now that he was human and she had her witch-powers. Damon wrapped his arm around her waist and held her down as she struggled, raising his eyebrows at Elena in a subtle request for help.

"Okay, right." Elena called their attention back to the matter at hand with a sharp whistle, "I think that we should go to the hospital." She paused and levelled her glare back at Stefan, "And don't be like that to my best friend. She's right. You can be an asshole."

"I think I'll be alright looking after Bonnie, don't you, Elena?" Damon added subtly, tightening his grip on the curly-headed witch as she went to rise again.

"Yeah," Somewhat unexpectedly, at least where Damon was concerned, it was Bonnie who spoke. He glanced down at her, noting the dark blush and sheer embarrassment on her face. It was really quite cute.

"I won't leave her side, I promise."

"Excellent, we can take my car," Elena cut her eyes to Stefan quickly, "I really don't want any accidents."

They made it to the hospital in record time. Stefan was spending his time pouting and complaining, and Elena was quietly fuming. It didn't take long to locate Matt's private room, either, the sound of Tyler's incessant chatter drawing the pair of them to him.

It was only silenced by the look on Elena's face. She stood with one hand on her hip and the other

"Tyler, the ring, please?"

"You heard her." He nodded at Matt and smiled, "Are you alright? I'm really, really sorry... about everything."

"Ring? What ring? I haven't got a ring..." With a clearly unsubtle glance at Stefan, Tyler raised his eyebrows and tried to respond.

"Yes, yes you have!" Now Stefan was panicking.

"No... No, no, I definitely don't know anything about a ring." He was shaking his head violently and hoping that Elena would get the message.

"Stefan," Elena's patience was as thin as a cigarette paper, at this stage. "You said that Tyler had the ring."

"He-He told me to... I don't have it, bro! You told me to pretend I had it!" Then, as if there was a need for an explanation, "What? She looks pissed!"

But before Elena could get any of the words out, there was a soft cough from the hospital bed between them.

"E-elena?" Matt groaned from the edge of the bed, "Damn, he hit me with a frickin car..."

"I-I didn't mean to..."

"I've genuinely had enough of this. For the last damn time, where. Is. The. Ring?"

"I don't know."

"Seriously, Stefan, I'm losing my patience here. What the hell did you do with it? Don't make me get Alaric. He has Vervain."

"Nothing, I swear," Now Stefan was panicking, "Tyler's lying! Bonnie will tell you that he's lying!"

"I swear, man! No shit, I'm not lying!" Tyler was almost as scared of Elena as Stefan was.

"You little shit!" In a half second, Stefan had Tyler by the collar and was trying to lift his frame from the ground, "Give her the fucking ring-"

"You told me to pretend I had it," The smarmy Lockwood muttered, before turning to Elena and smiling, "I, uh, don't have it."

"I did nothing of the sort. Stop lying and tell her where it is."

They continued in the same vein for the better part of twenty minutes. Elena was nearly in tears by the time she snapped.

"That's it. I've had enough. Stefan. Turn out your pockets." She stopped and looked over at Tyler, "You too, douchey." They both complied, but nothing turned up, until there was a short burst of noise from the hospital bed. "Matt? Are you alright?" At his quiet cough, Elena had quickly turned to look at her battered and bruised ex-boyfriend.

"Errrrm, Elena? What does this ring look like?" He hesitated just a little bit.

"A blue stone, silver setting..."

"Has it got an inscription on the inside?"

"I guess so... I've never really... looked at the inside of it..."

"It's fairly big, right?"

"Well," And Elena laughed just a little at the next words to leave her mouth, "It fits Damon, so it's got to be big."

"Er, nope haven't seen it," He started to joke, but, looking at Elena's face once again, he changed tack, "J-just kidding... It rolled out when you ran me over, I saw it lying there... and you know, it was the last thing I saw before I blacked out."

There was a ripple around the group that exploded fury and irritation.

"Now what? It could be anywhere."

"I didn't say I left it lying there. It's ... have a look... in my jacket." And faster than anyone could blink, Elena was scrabbling around in his outside pockets. "Other side, maybe? Or, try the inside pocket... I'm sure I-"

It was the attempt at an innocent whistle that really gave Stefan away.

"What now?"

"Nothing..." But he wasn't particularly good at the sly things in life. In seconds, Elena had practically jumped on him, her hands scrabbling in her boyfriend's pockets now. She dropped away from him a moment later and held up the ring triumphantly.

"Got it, finally." She scowled at the three boys and shook her head at Stefan, "I'll deal with you later."

And because Tyler was a total pig, he couldn't help but yell out a very, very loud, "Wahey!"

"Guys? We're back!" Elena was calling out into the seemingly-empty boarding house – though she knew that there had to be somebody there – Damon could hardly leave, and Bonnie was probably in no condition to go anywhere.

There was only one sign of life that they could see or hear, and that came in the form of the shriek that permeated very suddenly through the house.

"Damon!" And they were running, petrified that he had done something horrible to Elena's best friend.

"Bonnie! Bonnie, are you okay?" And with a shoulder to the door from Stefan, the pair of them ran to her rescue.

Or so they thought.

They stopped dead as their eyes took in the sight before them, the way Damon had the petite form of Bonnie trapped beneath the covers, lying under him, his hands pinning hers either side of her head as he pressed his lips to her naked skin.

"Oh, my god."

Two sets of eyes turned to look from each other and up at Elena, speaking in tandem as they raised their eyebrows to stare.

"What?"

"I thought you were supposed to be injured... unwell, even." Elena couldn't hide the smirk in her voice, glad that Bonnie had at least found somebody to quell her more insatiable urges.

"I so did not need to see that." Stefan chimed in anyway, feeling distinctly awkward that he had caught his brother in an incredibly compromising position.

"Well..." Elena had her eyes glued to the ceiling as she blindly fumbled for the ring they had fought so hard to find. "Anyway... Damon, catch." She threw it blindly as well, and quite suddenly, Damon was half naked in the air, catching and replacing his ring, before returning to his place dominating Bonnie.

"What's the problem, guys?" He was smirking as he stared down into Bonnie's darkened eyes, "I said I wouldn't leave her side... and she wanted to shower..." She slapped him on the chest with the free hand she had, and Damon simply kissed her bottom lip gently, before continuing, "And then, she just wanted to recline..."

When Elena spoke again, her tone was clearly quite disbelieving.

"Umm hmm. I'm sure she just wanted to... recline."

"I accept no responsibility." Bonnie was smirking, even if she was speaking aloud, "I think he might have compelled me." Though her expression was mild and Damon's hands were clearly doing more than enough to settle her down.

Elena backed away, eyes wide, half a smile courting her cheeks. She bit her bottom lip and let out a quiet laugh as she nodded at the pair of them.

"Right... Anyways, I have to talk to... someone, anyone, clothed – so, I'll catch you later, guys. We'll be upstairs if you need us..." She pulled away and nodded brightly at her best friend, "and er, you guys can... carry on."

"Later, E!" And Elena slammed the door, pressing her back and hands against it as Stefan looked at her, smiling and nodding.

"I'll just be... off to the Grill..."

"I'm sorry, what?" Elena quirked her eyebrows up at him and frowned tiredly.

"You know, go and get a drink, maybe see how Matt's doing?"

"Stefan. That someone was you."

"Oh... right... gotcha." He grinned and nodded at her.

Idiot.

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A/N: Thanks to Mouse555 for the preread and beta'ing, she's incredibubble.

If you want the "Bamon" (Damn, that's a WEIRD portmanteau) scene from the bit where they're in hospital, y'all only have to ask.

Reviews appreciated.

xxx