Disclaimer: I own less than a hobo who's lost his shopping cart.

Four months ago, I had been happy. Four months ago, I knew exactly what I wanted out of life and who I wanted to spend it with. Stefan. I had ignored the fact that deep down I knew I was only in high school. I ignored that we were barely less typical than the average high school relationship. What we had together had been so intense and all encompassing, I had been positive it was true love. Had as in past tense.

As I walked down the steps, I tried to prevent myself from reflecting obsessively about my failed relationship with Stefan. It was too easy to fall into a pattern where all I could think about was how I lost my soul mate. Life had moved on, however, and there were always more important things to consider – like cereal. What to eat for breakfast this morning was a much more pressing issue than Stefan.

"Morning, Jenna," I greeted my aunt with false enthusiasm. I seated myself somewhat wearily on one of the kitchen chairs, propping my leg beneath my butt in an awkward position.

Jenna rushed around the kitchen looking frazzled. Her recently highlighted hair whipped around her face like a tornado as she reached for bowls and other utensils to feed me. Actually, Jenna looked more than frazzled she looked downright frenzied.

"Jenna?" I asked, concern seeping into my voice. "Are you okay?"

At the sound of my voice, Jenna finally stopped scrambling through the kitchen and turned to address me. She had barely opened her mouth when an enormous crash from inside the linen closet in the hallway interrupted her. Startled, I nearly fell out of my chair before looking back towards Jenna, my eyes as wide as saucers in my fright.

Instinctually, I reached for something that could be used as a weapon in the case of an attack. I knew it was unlikely that any real danger was in the house, but I had experienced too many near death experiences over the past year to not expect the worst. Actually, it had been months since anyone had tried to kill me or anyone in town. The year where rabid animals had reigned over Mystic Falls was over, and already the terror that had swept over the town was fading.

If there was one good thing about Stefan leaving – and I refused to admit that any good came of losing him – it was that all of the blood and gore left with him. With no vampires remaining in Mystic Falls – with the exception of Damon and Caroline – life had evened out. Normalcy was the norm again, and everyone had relaxed into new routines that did not involve worrying about surviving to see another day.

But now with the crash in the linen closet, my mind was on red alert, prepared for any number possible horrors to leap out of the closet and drag me away into the night.

"What was that?" I asked, standing up to investigate the cause of the commotion. I did not want to particularly go look, but I could not have Jenna walk into potential danger because I was too afraid to face it myself.

"Nothing! It was nothing!" Jenna practically shouted at me. "Please, Elena...Just…"

Before I had time to interpret Jenna's strange behavior, a man came tumbling out of the linen closet. A completely naked man. Frozen, I shot glances between Jenna and the man lying on the floor. He was attractive from what I could see of him. And what I could see was a whole lot of body and gray hair. His face was concealed by his awkward position sprawled on the floor. A wild thought ran through my head that I wished he would move his hands and conceal the less PG parts of himself instead.

"What the hell?" I asked. In all of the scenarios I had cooked up in my brain, naked man in the linen closet had not been one of them.

The man stood up, his hands immediately moving to cover his privates. Looking at him clearly, I was startled to realize he was fifty. He was an absolute silver fox. Despite his grey hair, I never would have expected a man with that body to be so old. At the moment, his mostly still wrinkle-free was twisted into a look of embarrassment. "Jenna?" he asked beseechingly.

"Elena, this is my friend Travis," Jenna said. Her face was the color of a tomato, and she was casting her eyes about the room avoiding eye contact with me. "He's just a friend."

This was not the first time I had been faced with my aunt's late-night excursions – although technically it was morning. What was disconcerting about the encounter was that the man before her was not Alaric. I had known they broke up following Isobel's sudden appearance at the house, but I had always assumed everything would fix itself in the end. Also, the guy was old. I admitted he was hot, but he was definitely at least twenty-five years older than Jenna.

"Elena, I'm so sorry. Travis is leaving," Jenna apologized.

"Not like that I hope," I replied awkwardly. Travis laughed quietly, but he looked if possible more nervous after my attempt at a joke.

Jenna was too flustered to appreciate the joke, and instead, with a look of mortification on her face, gestured to where a crumpled pile of men's clothing was laying on the ground. The man walked towards the clothing and the dimples in his butt seemed to wink at her as he moved.

"You know what, I will eat something on the way to school," I said wanting nothing more than to get out of their way as quickly as possible.

"No, you don't have to. There's plenty of cereal here," Jenna offered.

"Thanks, but I think I'll still leave now. Bye Jenna…Travis," I answered. As I walked towards the door, I peaked back to look at them. Travis had finally put some pants on, but his broad chest was pressed up against Jenna's back as he whispered soothingly in her ear.

I got into my car and began to drive into town. I needed a Denny's – no, an Ihop. I had earned Ihop. Jenna and Travis's apparent exploits in the kitchen had me thinking about sex, a subject I generally avoided at all costs. There had been a time where I was at ease with my sexual prowess but now not so much.

I had no doubts that Stefan loved me, and that when he left he really was trying to look out for my best interests. However, I also had no doubts that he and Katherine were fucking like rabbits across Europe at this point. Whether Stefan had asked Katherine to leave Mystic Falls with him or if she simply followed him out of town was a mystery to me. What was not a mystery was the fact that whether he had invited her or not, they were together now.

Deep down, I was harboring some significant doubts about why Stefan left. I knew at the end of the day that Stefan had left to protect me. When the Martins had died and Elijah had been buried with the white ash dagger securely lodged in his chest, there was no one left to betray me to Klaus. Stefan had sought by his leaving to shield me from the harsh scrutiny of various vampires we would inevitably run into as a couple. Secretly, I had always suspected that Katherine had threatened him as well. She was the remaining loose end in the doppelganger drama and the only person I did not trust to keep my secret. Her love of Stefan, though warped, was real enough for her to resort to intimidation in the hopes it would send him back into her arms.

My concern was that a part of Stefan may have wanted to leave me for Katherine all along. As honest as the love between me and Stefan had been, there was a level of energy between him and Katherine that we had lacked. And in the physical realm, there was so much more she could give him. After all, my sexual experiences had been basically limited to my couplings with Matt and Stefan. No one had ever taught me the adventurous aspects of sex, and I certainly had not been brave enough to research it on my own. Katherine undoubtedly had more tricks to please a man in bed.

As I parked my car in the Ihop parking lot, I could not help but wonder if my relationship with Stefan might not have ended if I held more sexual appeal.

Damon's POV

For the first time in a long time, I was considering obtaining employment. Or at the very least a fucking hobby. It was getting ridiculous how boring my life had become. In the past whenever this itch of normalcy had come over me, I would pack my belongings and head to a new locale without any consideration of who I was leaving behind. Mystic Falls was different, though. I had laid down roots here. More importantly, I could not bear to leave Elena, especially not after she had lost Stefan.

I was not delusional; I knew that Elena did not rank me as an equal to Stefan, however, I also knew if I left her last link to Stefan would be gone. I could not risk devastating her.

She had been so destroyed when Stefan had made his decision to leave Mystic Falls. When he had told her, she had merely grimaced, holding her pain in to avoid making Stefan feel guilty for his departure. The moment he had left, however, she had dissolved into a pathetic puddle of tears and self-loathing. How she could possibly blame herself for Stefan leaving was beyond me. Elena was an astounding mix of coy innocence and blatant femininity. In other words, Elena was pure and simple perfection.

Their relationship had suffered some rather dramatic highs and lows following Stefan's leaving. Sometimes she would show up at the boarding house desperate for a reminder of Stefan or comfort from a friend. On these days, I would sit with her in the library and tell her stories about historical events. Where I was when JFK died. Where I was when Wham broke up. The basics had been fairly well covered. I would cook her dinner, and we would eat my extravagant meals on the floor while we watched reality TV and crime dramas for hours. At one point, she would ultimately break down into hysterical tears – it happened every time – but she would let me hold her until she regained her composure.

Other days she was not so friendly. As often as she wanted to feel a connection to Stefan, Elena wanted to forget Stefan had ever stepped foot in Mystic Falls. She would lash out if I contacted her, and would ignore me whenever our paths crossed in public. Being snubbed by Elena was painful, but I understood that she was grieving and that it was not a true reflection on how she felt about me.

Honestly, I had no idea how she felt about me.

My musings on whether I could join a book club without sacrificing my manhood were interrupted by a knock on the door. Standing, I walked towards the door only to reveal Elena looking nervous as hell.

She was chewing on her bottom lip and her eyes were filled with a wild agitation that seemed out of place considering her usually calm demeanor. Elena was unbelievable. Her usually poker-straight hair was mussed from constantly running her fingers through the chocolate strands. Her cheeks were flushed from whatever had put her into such a state of excitement. I was hard pressed to remember a time I had ever wanted her more.

"Can I come in?" she asked timidly.

In response, I motioned for her to step inside, pausing to study her ass as she passed me. Delectable, as usual.

"What have I done to earn your company today?" I asked with a grin. A day with Elena was always less mundane. She gave me that little spark of purpose that was so hard to find elsewhere.

"I need to do this, Damon. I am tired of feeling one-upped," Elena rambled her voice rising in pitch and volume as she spoke. "You can't imagine what it is like? And I always do what I'm supposed to! To say to Hell with it and actually learn would be amazing!"

I stared at the beautiful girl before me, before coming to the obvious conclusion: Elena had gone completely insane. She had given no indication what could have caused this melt-down in any of the previous times I had seen her.

"Elena," I began cautiously, "the ending of Inception made more sense than you are right now. Tell me what's going on."

She swallowed hard, a lump appearing in her throat, before she explained, "Damon, ever since Stefan left I have been thinking about what was missing in our relationship. And I realized that there are a lot of things I still do not…know."

"I'm still not following," I said.

"Damon, I want to know more about sex. I want you to teach me about sex," Elena answered him.

"Have you lost your fucking mind?" I demanded.

"Damon…"

"Don't interrupt me, Elena," I ordered clenching my jaw. I knew my expression displayed the extent of my fury and how close I was to losing control. "What are you trying to do to me? What could have possibly possessed you to ask me that?"

Elena sighed loudly in annoyance. Then, she said, "First, I would appreciate if you stop yelling at me. Second, I told you, I want to learn. I feel…repressed, yes, repressed is the right word. I want to try something new."

"And you decided," I began slowly, "that I had missed my calling of being a teacher and that I have nothing better to do than explain to you the birds and the bees."

"You're not exactly doing much these days, Damon. And I think you've misunderstood me. I…" Elena faltered clearly steeling herself to finish her sentence, "I don't want you to teach me, I want you to show me."

I could not summon up words. What she was suggesting was simultaneously the sexiest and worse idea ever. My cock had started to stir the moment she had said the word sex. Actually asking me to fuck her had me as hard as a steel rod. My overwhelming attraction to her did not change the fact that I owed more to Elena. Taking advantage of her vulnerability would make me evil. Yeah, I was evil sometimes, but not with Elena. Never with Elena.

"Please, Damon. Say something," Elena whispered her cheeks flushed crimson with embarrassment.

When I finally spoke, my voice was rough and throaty, "Are you suggesting we sleep together?"

"Yes."

"If you wanted to get in my pants, you don't have to make up such an elaborate scenario," I tried to joke but my delivery held barely a glimmer of my typical snarkiness.

I slapped myself mentally for my attempt at a joke. Why I felt the need to draw this out so awkwardly was beyond me. I should have outright refused and kicked her out by now. Actually, I realized I had yet to really tell her no.

"Damon, please be serious. This has nothing to do with wanting to sleep with you. There is no one else who I would be comfortable learning from. Would you rather I find someone else?"

I blinked repeatedly shocked by how unfair Elena was being. With just a few sentences, she had been able to bruise my ego by suggesting she did not actually desire to sleep with me specifically, threatened me, and manipulated my feelings. That was what chafed the most. Elena knew the hold she had over me, the girl was not stupid. Here she was unapologetically manipulating that hold to get what she wanted, and I didn't like it.

"No, Elena, I don't want you trying to pick up men to fuck you, but are you really so comfortable with me? What would baby brother think?" I asked.

Elena visibly flinched at the mention of Stefan but did not let his words faze her. Instead, she answered, "It's just sex, Damon."

"Just sex? We seem to have switched roles here. Shouldn't I be trying to seduce you while you argue that sex is a sacred act between two people that share an emotional connection?"

"Don't you think we share an emotional connection, Damon?" Elena asked. In that moment, I thought I was going to pass out. Elena was playing the part of the coquette masterfully with her lower lip pouted outwards and her eyelashes lowered seductively. As she spoke, she moved closer to me, eliminating the careful distance I had kept between our standing bodies since our conversation had started.

I do not believe I could have moved if I wanted to. I was paralyzed by lust. It was a first, and I was not particularly happy about the effect she had on me. Something about her expression had reminded me of Katherine. It was the sheer sensuality of her gaze, the needy way she looked at me in the hopes that I would bend to her will. Unfortunately, it was not going to work. My reasoning not my dick was still in control of my body, although I was not sure how long that was going to last.

My limited resolve shattered when she whispered, "Damon, I want this."

She was breaking me down. Too many times I had dreamed of Elena begging me to take her, but this situation had never occurred to me. Her neediness was breathtaking and was a contradiction in and of itself. Neediness implied she was under my control, but the lust her desire stirred within me caused me to crumble into an even more pitiable pile of lust than she was. Every time she pouted her lower lip, I was reminded of how much I would love to nibble on it.

I was not sure whether I should, or even could, continue to deny her. If she made that sexy face at me again, all bets were off.

I could not take her threat of finding someone else to satisfy her cavalierly either. It would not be hard for someone as delicious as Elena to find a stranger to take her to bed. All sorts of perverts could corrupt my beautiful angel, and I would be damned if I would allow that to happen. If there was going to be any corruption, it would be done by me.

There was the crux of the matter. If Elena was adamant on learning the intricacies and wild side of sex, I wanted her to be safe. Even more so, I simply wanted her. I could compel her to give up on this crazy scheme, but the demon part of me was growling at me to stop being such a pussy already. We should have been wrapping up round one by this point, not still hemming and hawing over whether or not it is a good idea.

"Elena, are you sure?" I asked.

Elena gave me a look that made it clear she thought I was insane, "Of course I'm not sure. This is the most ridiculous idea I have ever had. But I want it. And I am not going to change my mind."

"Alright then. Let's do this."