Disclaimer: I don't own The Vampire Diaries, but I wish I owned Damon.

Ch. 1:

Stefan and Elena sat on a park bench, just enjoying the sunset. With all that had gone on in the last few weeks, it was nice to just take a moment.

"I love you, Stefan." Elena said, snuggling into his side.

Stefan smiled and pressed a kiss to her hair.

"I love you, too." He told her.

"Ah, is that just so sweet." A sinister, familiar voice said.

Within a second, Stefan was up and he had Elena behind them as Katherine stood in front of them, sneering.

"Katherine, what do you want?" Stefan asked.

"Well, I was going to play with you for awhile before I claimed what was mine, but I find this whole display to just be too much." She told him.

"I told you." Stefan said. "I'm not yours. I never was. Just leave, Katherine."

"You are mine." She snarled at him. "I made you. I gave you everything."

"You killed me." Stefan shot back. "You took everything from me."

"Obviously not everything." Katherine said, looking at Elena. "I guess I'll just have to try harder."

She leapt at them and Stefan tensed to throw her off, but something hit her in the air and she went flying into a tree.

Katherine jumped to her feet and turned, snarling. Standing between her and Stefan and Elena was a young woman with long blonde hair, dressed in ripped jeans, a black t-shirt, and a blue vest.

"You." Katherine gasped.

"Alexei." Stefan said at the same moment.

"Heya, Stef." The woman said, grinning. "What's up?"

Katherine leapt and the woman easily batted her away.

"Wait your turn." The woman said as Katherine climbed to her feet. "I'm talking to Stefan right now, so just wait like a good little girl until I'm ready to finish kicking your ass."

Katherine rushed the woman and she sighed before punching her and sending Katherine flying back into the tree.

"Obviously your maker is planning on being rude." She said, sounding annoyed. "Why don't you head back to the mansion and I'll meet you there after I deal with her."

"Come on, Elena." Stefan said.

As he pulled her away, Elena glanced back and saw the woman, Alexei, dodge Katherine and hit her in the back as she passed.

"Stefan, who was that?" Elena demanded as they drove away quickly.

"I'll explain when we get home." Stefan told her.

The rest of the trip was silent and Stefan hurried Elena inside once they were back at his home.

"Ah, little brother." Damon called, his customary drink in hand. "And dear Elena. Aren't we supposed to be on a date or something else human-like?"

"Katherine showed up." Elena said, glaring at him.

Any look of amusement dropped from Damon's face.

"And then Alexei showed up." Stefan told him.

Damon stared at him.

"Alexei's here?" he demanded. "In Mystic Falls?"

"Of course I'm here." a voice said.

Damon jumped as a hand took his drink. He spun to find the woman behind him, sipping his drink, covered in blood.

"Alexei?" he breathed. "Did you…?"

"Oh, calm down." She said, handing the drink back. "Your precious Katherine is still alive. I just made it necessary for her to spend the next month or so licking her wounds."

She sighed, ignoring the shocked looks the others were giving her and stretched.

"I'm going to use Damon's shower." She said, grimacing at the state of her clothes. "And steal some of his clothes. That should give you plenty of time to get Elena up to speed."

Without another word, she turned around and left the others staring after her.

"I hate it when that woman shows up." Damon said, sitting down.

"Who is she?" Elena demanded. "Is she a vampire?"

"No." Stefan replied, pulling her down on the couch next to him.

"But she took on Katherine and won." Elena said. "How can she do that? What is she?"

"No one knows." Damon said. "That's what makes her so annoying."

"Alexei has been around for as long as we have." Stefan told Elena. "Longer. When Katherine first changed us and left, Alexei found us. She wasn't vampire, but she helped us. Made sure we were safe. She kept us alive for a year before disappearing. But she would periodically show up, make sure we were alright, get us out of trouble if we needed it."

"But who is she?" Elena asked.

"We have no idea." Damon said. "She just shows up for a few months, does all kinds of amazing things, then disappears for years again."

"You don't know anything about her?" Elena asked. "I find that hard to believe."

"Oh, we know plenty." Stefan told her. "Look through history hard enough and she shows up. Over and over again, sometimes with the same name, sometimes with different ones, but one thing always remains the same. She's a warrior. And she helps those in need."

"And right now, you two are in need." Alexei said.

She was wearing one of Damon's black button up shirts and a pair of black sweat pants and her wet hair was in a loose pony tail. She walked over to the chair Damon was sitting in and sat on the arm, taking his drink again.

"I was drinking that, you know?" he groused.

"I'll share." She assured him, taking a sip.

"Why are we in need?" Stefan asked her.

"Katherine, you psycho ex." She said, giving the drink back. "I've been tracking her over the last thirty years, watching her get crazier and crazier, knowing she'd eventually make her way back to you two. Now she back and I'm going to take her down."

"Why didn't you just kill her tonight?" Damon asked.

"Because I'd rather you didn't hate me." She replied. "Also, she has bigger plans in the work than just destroying you two. I need to know what those plans are."

"What plans?" Elena asked.

"She's been researching a certain artifact that I've been looking for." Alexei replied. "I need to know if she found it, and if she has, take it back."

"What artifact?" Damon asked. "And why do you care if I hate you?"

"Dude, I've spent way to many years saving your ass for you to get yourself killed by doing something stupid cause your pissed." Alexei told him. "And the artifact is just something that would be interesting to me…and those like me."

"There are more like you?" Elena asked.

"A few." Alexei replied cagily. "But I can't kill Katherine until I know what she knows. But, since she wouldn't back off tonight, I have to wait until she comes back."

"What are you going to do while you wait?" Stefan asked.

"Well, I haven't done the whole school in a while, so I thought I'd see what the humans were up to." She told them. "Plus, since you're enrolled, it'll give us time to hang out. It's been years since I had the two Salvatore brothers together, and I'm going to take advantage of it."

"Leave me out of whatever bonding session you have planned in that twisted little brain of yours." Damon told her, draining the glass. "Not interested. Since you missed it, I'll bring you up to speed. I'm persona non grata in this little group."

"Yeah, cause you killed Elena's brother." Alexei told him. "Believe me, I'm caught up. And if you think you and I aren't having a conversation about that, you are sorely mistaken. What were you thinking? I've been trying for years to bring you as far as Elena did, how could you let Katherine screw that up?"

"Because I'm an idiot." Damon said, glaring. "But then you've always known that."

He stood up and brushed past her, causing her to fall into the empty seat, and he walked out.

"That boy gets moodier by the year." Alexei said, shaking her head after him. "And he has the nerve to make fun of Stephen."

Elena chuckled and Alexei smiled.

"So you're going to stay in Mystic Falls?" Stephen asked.

"Gonna have to." Alexei said, swinging her legs over the arm of the chair. "Someone has to keep Damon in line, and no offence, but you suck at it."

"I never claimed to be good at it." Stefan said, smiling.

"Yeah, yeah." Alexei replied, waving her hand as she stood up. "My room still the same?"

"Haven't changed a thing." He replied.

She nodded.

"Nice to meet you, Elena." Alexei said. "And can I just say, my sympathies on having such a nutso doppelganger."

"Thanks." Elena said, laughing.

"You should get that girl home." Alexei told Stefan. "Well, I'm going to go tuck Damon in. Night all."

The couple watched the woman saunter out.

"Is she insane?" Elena asked.

"Yes." Stefan answered. "Come on. Let's get you home."

Elena nodded and took his hand as he led her to the door.


Damon was lying on his bed with his eyes closed when he felt the bed sink. He opened his eyes to find Alexei laying on the bed next to him.

"What do you want?" he asked.

"I want you to be careful." She told him softly.

"Why?" he shot back.

"Let me deal with Katherine." She said. "Please don't get hurt because you get between us."

"Why are you after her?" Damon demanded.

"Just be glad it's me and not one of the other people she's pissed off. Damon I'm trying to help you!" Alexei told him angrily. "She's dangerous! Promise me you'll keep yourself safe."

"Alexei, every few years, you waltz in and turn my life upside down." He said, turning on his side to face her. "And then you leave me in pieces. What makes you better than Katherine?"

Alexei turned to face him and gently put her hand on his cheek.

"I only leave to keep you safe." She told him softly. "I would rather die than see you or Stefan get hurt."

"Humph." He snorted, turning back onto his back. "If you're here for Stefan, you'll have to get in line. The two evil twins have claimed him first."

He was surprised when she climbed on top of him and took his face between her hands.

"Stefan is my brother." She told him, her eyes boring into his. "You are not. I only leave you because if I were to stay, if the others knew what you were to me, they would kill you rather then let me be with you. So don't act like you think I'm here for Stephen. You know I'm not, and if you weren't always so hung up on Katherine, you would see that."

She rolled off him and walked towards the door as he sat up.

"Alexei…" he called and she stopped.

"I never asked for more than you could give, Damon." She said, not turning around. "I only ever wanted you to be happy, whether that was with Katherine…or with someone else." She sighed. "Good night, Damon."

She walked out, closing the door behind her, and left him alone.

A/N: Hey, so this was an idea that came to me while I was walking around the store today. I have a basic idea of where this might go, but it will be slow to update, as everything takes a back seat to I'd Come For You for now. Let me know what you think.

Abbey