Damon froze as he watched Elena leave the Grill and he grabbed Stefan's arm. "I want to," he said, softly. "I'm not taking the fall for this one." He moved past his brother to follow Elena. "Elena," he said, and he was stopped dead in his tracks as the palm of her hand made contact with his cheek. He hadn't been prepared for that, but he should have been. It didn't hurt, not physically. It had been a long time since she had slapped him, so he really had messed up tonight. But she wasn't totally innocent either, and he wasn't going to let her walk all over him this time.

"How dare you?" She flared, angry tears glistening in her eyes. "How could you do that to me Damon? How could you be so mean and heartless? Do you not care about anyone but yourself?"

He raised an eyebrow and crossed his arms. "How was I supposed to know she was your mother?" he asked. "She gave you up, she sucks. Didn't we already go through this?" Then he paused. "That's right. We did do this already. And you seemed all on the bandwagon with her sucking, until you found out that I killed her. Newsflash, Elena. I'm a vampire. I've killed a lot of people, and I'm not sorry about one of them. I don't have to be. So in reality, you're the one that messed up here, not me. You didn't tell me what your mother's name was, so don't blame this on me."

Elena stared at him in disbelief. "Wow," she said, softly. "Thought you were better than this. Guess you aren't who I thought you were." She went to push past him, intent of heading back to her boyfriend, but he gently grabbed her arm. "Let go of me."

"Who did you think I was Elena?" he asked. "Did you think I was some saint? Like my perfect brother?" He was beginning to hope that Elena was one of the few people that saw him for him, not some shadow of his brother, but he was wrong, like he often was lately.

"Hardly," she answered. "I just… I didn't think you would be this mean, especially to me."

Damon released her arm and sighed. "Elena…" he said in defeat then moved closer to her as a strange man approached them. Despite her anger towards him, she did allow him to stand in front of her, a hand on her arm once more. "Who are you?"

"I have a message for you," he said, his eyes trained on Elena. "You have to stop looking. She doesn't want to know you or talk to you."

"Isobel?" Elena whispered, trying to move around Damon. "That means…"

Damon held her back and shook his head. "He's being compelled," he said. Just what he needed right now. This girl caused more trouble than she was worth.

"Do you understand?" The man asked.

Elena jumped but she nodded. "Yes, I understand," she said hurriedly, then screamed as the man jumped in front of an on- coming car. "Oh god," she whispered into Damon's chest, not realizing he had pulled her close to him.

"We have to go," he said, his hand sliding into hers as she started tugging her away from the scene. He was almost angry with himself. She was only one that could make him the angriest person alive, only to have him jump to her rescue the first sign of trouble.

Something caught her eye and she pulled free from his grasp as she picked up the fallen cell phone. Then she did allow Damon to lead her to his car. "Stefan," she said, as she kept glancing over her shoulder in the direction of the grill.

"Call him," Damon said simply as he peeled out from the curb. He was pushing well over the speed limit, but he slowed down when they were a few miles from the accident. "Are you okay?"

"I'm not hurt if that's what you mean," she said, her thumbs moving over the keypad of her cell phone to type out a text message.

"Fair enough," he said, finally pulling into his driveway. She followed him closely as he went inside, locking the door behind them as she headed to the kitchen. "Elena," he said, peeling off his jacket and flexing his arms. "I'm sorry about earlier. I didn't… it's not like I did it to hurt you." He didn't know why he felt like he needed to explain himself to her, but he didn't want her to be angry anymore.

"You're trying to hurt everyone Damon," she said, folding her arms as she leaned against the counter. "Because Katherine broke you're heart, and you want everyone else to be as miserable." Her eyes seemed to have softened quite a bit since they had left the Grill, and try as he might, he didn't have a smart ass comeback for her.

Damon clenched his jaw and looked away from her. "I'll live."

"Yes, I suppose you will," she said, making her way toward him as she turned his gaze back toward her. "It doesn't have to be like this Damon. Not everyone is out to hurt you."

"Like they could," he muttered, jerking his head from her soft touch.

"I know that you and I… have a lot of issues," she said, lifting her shoulder slightly as she thought about her words. "But you're my friend and I worry about you, and… I don't like to see you like this."

"Dually noted," he said offering her a small smile. "I'll work on it. And perhaps next time something big comes up in your life, you could clue me in, don't fancy a black eye from you."

She smiled back at him, happy the tension was finally broken between them, when she heard a strange nose from the living room. Damon placed a quick finger over her lips, signaling her to be quiet, so clearly Stefan wasn't home. Someone else was in the Salvatore house.