AN: Sorry there was no update in such a long, long time, I've been pretty busy. Gladly this is only a one shot collection and no 'real' story to follow XD Anways this time I used a Non-Disney song from one of my favorite animated movies 'Anastasia'. I love that song. The OS turned out a bit different than it was planned and I'm not very satisfied with it, my writing was better once before, but I hope you'll forgive me.

Please leave some comments and let me know what you think ^^

Once Upon A December

"Dancing bears, painted wings

Things I almost remember

And a song someone sings

Once upon a December"

It was a cold night in Mystic Falls, winter wasn't far away and an elderly woman was walking up the stairs looking if her grandson was already asleep.

There was a dim light coming from his room. She shook her head and carefully opened the door. The little boy with the chocolate brown hair was standing at the window looking outside. "David." She said softly. "Shouldn't you be in bed already?"

The boy turned around and grinned. "But I'm not tired, grandma." He said.

She crossed her arms. "Your mother called twice asking if you were asleep and I told her you were, making your dear old granny lie to your mother….boy…" she said dramatically knowing it would get his attention.

And she was right. David jumped on his bed; she sat down next to him. "Sorry grandma. I didn't want you to lie." She was proud; her daughter did a remarkable job with the kid. "And you're not that old." He added, looking at her with his big dark eyes.

She put her arm around him. "So, how do we make you tired, my little hero?" she always called him that since he 'rescued' her from a big spider in the living room. David laughed; he liked to be a hero.

"You could tell me a story." He suggested. He loved listening to her stories. She smiled. "Alright the, you want something with talking animals or princesses?"

He made a funny face. "That's for girls, grandma!" he complained. "I want bloody fights and cars!"

She rolled her eyes and got up. "I'll go get your grandpa." She said and sighed. When it came to stories, her granddaughter was so much easier.

"No, wait!" David was under the impression that he hurt his grandmother. "I want to you tell me one, even if it's….girlie."

She sat down again. He looked at her eagerly. She needed to come up with something good, David was pretty clever for an eight year old.

"How about…I tell you a true story?" she suddenly had an idea. Winter always reminded her of a very special memory she'd like to share with him.

"Like something that really happened?" he asked excited? She nodded. "It is a love story."

He looked disgusted. "Grandma, that's for girrrrlllls." He complained. She chuckled. "Well, it is about vampires, too." That made David finally keen-eared. "I like vampires!"

His grandmother was satisfied, even if she was sure it wasn't the story he expected. "There was a girl and a vampire who loved her…" she started, smiling to herself.

"They need names!" David interrupted.

"Okay…how about well call them Elena and Damon?" she suggested. David rolled his eyes. "Not very creative."

She playfully slapped his arm. "My story, my names and now listen." She said amused.

David leaned back on his pillow, ready for the story.

"It happened a long, long time ago….Once upon a December…." And she drifted away, living through her memories again.

It was cold in Mystic Falls, very cold actually. It was the middle of December and over night came the worst blizzard in a long time over the town. Everything was white. It looked like a picture from a postcard.

Elena got up early; she didn't sleep well for a few weeks now and the storm outside didn't make it better. She wanted to go for a little walk, clear her head. Nothing in her life was going how it was supposed to be. Stefan was still being a total jerk, craving for revenge at Klaus. Bonnie was being strange and looking more often into dark magic than anyone liked. Caroline was caught in her own little love triangle between Tyler and surprisingly Klaus. Jeremy and Matt spent most of their time together, getting drunk. And Alaric had an alter ego who turned out to be a serial killer. Yep, life was awesome.

She opened the front door and was shocked. There was snow everywhere, the whole driveway snowed in.

"Oh no…." she mumbled. "Why now?" she went back inside and searched for her father's old gloves, the big ones he always used for the yard work. She put them on and made her way through the masses of the snow to the garage. She grabbed the old shovel and started to get rid of the snow.

She sighed heavily. It was hard work, but it needed to be done and she couldn't count on the two men living with her. She was so lost in her thoughts that she didn't notice the person approaching her.

"Whoa, easy there kitten." She looked up.

"What do you want Damon?" she asked annoyed. She wasn't in the mood for any company, especially not his. Things were awkward between them. She knew he loved her, he knew she still loved his brother; well at least he thought she did. Elena herself wasn't so sure anymore. She and Damon developed a very 'special' relationship during the last couple of months. They hung out a lot, they even had fun and yes, from time to time they kissed, but nothing more than that. Elena felt about it. She knew Damon wanted more, but she wasn't so sure she was ready for something new.

"Well, first I don't want to be turned into a giant snow man." He said playfully, but she didn't laugh.

"Someone is grumpy today." He noted. Elena continued her work without saying something. He rolled his eyes and grabbed her shovel. "Hey! Give it back!" she snapped.

He held it up above her head. "Go get it." He challenged.

She put her hands to her hips. "Damon, no games today."

He didn't care. "Well, I'm the vampire you do as I say, Miss Snow Queen." He teased her. Elena rolled her eyes. "Fine, but you know I'll always win."

"Oh please Elena, how can you always win? I have superpowers. I'm super strong and super fast and –"he couldn't finish his sentence, suddenly her lips were pressed on his. Every time he felt her soft lips it was new sensation. He still couldn't believe he was allowed to kiss her and even if she wasn't his, well not official, they went miles forward in their relationship.

He pulled her closer, not even noticing she grabbed the shovel. "Hah! See, I won!" she said and finally laughed. "I have the superpower of super kissing."

"Uhm, grandma?" David asked carefully. His grandmother raised an eyebrow. "Yes, sweetheart?"

"That's so girlie." He said, sounding almost annoyed. She chuckled. "I could stop."

He eagerly shook his head. "No, no go ahead." He still wanted her to finish the story.

They stared at each other for a while. "Why are you doing this? Don't you have little bro and step-daddy-history-teacher for that?" he asked.

Elena shrugged. "One is a teen drunk and the other one a serial killer; I guess they're too busy for cleaning the driveway."

He gazed carefully at her. There she was his Elena, but then she wasn't. Her eyes weren't shining anymore, she looked pale and exhausted and such sarcastic comments? They were his thing not hers.

He knew it was all getting too much for her. She needed a time out more than anybody.

"Let me." He reached his hand out and this time she willingly gave him the shovel. In a blink of an eye the snow was gone. Elena smiled. "Impressive."

"You mean vampressive." He joked. She laughed briefly before her eyes were sad again. He scratched the back of his head. He hated it to feel helpless, but there was nothing he could do to change their current situation.

Suddenly an idea came to his mind, he may couldn't help her, but he still could cheer her up.

"Come on, we should go." He said with a smirk.

"Where?" she wasn't in the mood to go anywhere.

His smirk grew bigger, he had the perfect idea. "It's a surprise."

"Damon, I'm really not in the mood –" this time he was the one to shut her up with a kiss. "Trust me, okay?" Sometimes it still amazed her how sweet he could be. She sighed. "Okay."

He grabbed her end when he suddenly noticed a problem. The streets where still icy, there was no way he could drive. "Elena…you have nothing against piggy back, right?"

"What?" before she could even react he grabbed her and made sure she was sitting on his back. "Close your eyes, love." He ordered. She did as he said and then he ran. It was an amazing feeling. For the first time in weeks she felt completely free. When she opened her eyes again, she was at a lake, but it was not the familiar lake in Mystic Falls, no this one was much bigger. It was surrounded by large trees. The surface was frozen and a few snowflakes were falling down on it. "Where are we?" she asked, amazed by the view.

He softly took her hand and they started walking around the lake. "It's a secret place. Very old actually. My mother and I used to come here a lot." Elena carefully looked at him. He never talked about his mother and she never asked. The only thing Stefan told her once was that she died when he was still a baby, but Damon, he never mentioned her.

"Close your eyes." He whispered into her ear. She giggled. Even if she didn't want to do anything suddenly she started to get excited. He shared a secret with her and it made her feel special. He grabbed her arms from behind and guided her forwards. "Can I open them?" she asked impatiently.

"Just a second…and open!" Elena opened her eyes and almost forgot to breathe. There was an old manor, no to her it looked like an old palace in the middle of the woods. It was clearly a ruin, but you could still enter it. There was small tower on the top, huge windows and old stairs. It must've been very precious once upon a time. "Damon, this is so breathtaking."

"Wanna go inside?" He asked, obviously happy she liked it.

"Is it safe?" she asked.

He shrugged. "You have me to watch over you." And that was the truth, she knew he would always protect her.

When they walked inside, Elena was impressed how intact the house still was. Sure it looked ruinous, the ceiling was broken, the stairs weren't safe and windows were smashed, but still it looked great. There were old paintings on the wall showing laughing angels, with colorful wings and dancing bears. She carefully touched them. She looked up, there even was a chandelier on the still existing part of the ceiling. Elena felt like she had gone back in time or she was transported into a fairytale. "It is so beautiful."

Damon watched every step she made. "My mother and I found it when I was a kid, she was teaching me how to ride a horse, but I was very clumsy and it ran off….with me still on it…" Elena could see he was reliving his memory. "She went after me and managed to calm the horse, she was really good with animals…" a sad smile appeared on his face. "None of us noticed where we were heading to and suddenly we were lost….that's when we found this place." He never shared this story with anyone. Not even Stefan knew the old manor.

"Was it a ruin even back then?" she asked interested. He nodded. "It wasn't as destroyed as this, but no one lived here." He walked around, how many hours did he spent there?

"My mother and I used to come here very often, mostly when my father had his….aggressive phases. After she died it was the only place I felt safe and happy…" he explained and she could almost feel his pain.

She grabbed his hand and squeezed it softly. "That's why you brought me here? To feel safe and happy?"

He softly touched her cheek. "It's all I want…your happiness."

She turned away. Whenever he said things like this she was reminded how much he loved her and it scared her. There were so many issues between them. Her still unresolved feelings for his brother, all the times both of them messed up, her friends and mostly his immortality. She told Stefan wants becoming a vampire would never be an option for her, so was it fair to keep him at her side, when she would eventually leave him one day?

"Close your eyes again." He suddenly said, interrupting her thoughts. She did it and immediately felt him in front of her. "Imagine how it must've been here before the house turned into a ruin." He whispered.

"Can you see it? All is cleaned up and tidy and very cheesy." He chuckled, Elena smiled. "The chandelier is turned on, the portraits on the wall free of dusk, everything is bright." He took her hands and guided her through the room, her eyes were still closed. She enjoyed that moment more than words could ever describe it.

"Can you hear it? Music is playing. Laughter everywhere. People around you all dressed up in elegant dresses and suits." Elena giggled. She could see it right before her eyes. She saw the people, faces she didn't recognize, but still she felt comfortable. They were couples dancing to a cheerful sound. Children running around.

"But no one…" Damon continued, "No one looks as beautiful as you. You wear that long blue dress silk dress, your hair is a bit pinned up, but a few curls are free…you walk on these shoes I'm afraid of…" she laughed light-hearted. She could feel the silk on her skin.

"You feel a bit lost…" he steps away. "And you're searching for someone…"

"And I look around…" Elena said, never opening her eyes, she just enjoyed the pictures he made alive in her head. "And I spot you in the crowd." She walked towards him, instinctively knowing who was. "I walk towards you…"

"And I walk towards you…" His voice was husky. "And then I'm near you…"

She reached her hand out. "And you take me into your arms." He laid an arm around her tiny waist. "And we dance…" she said, suddenly remembering their first dance together.

Damon moved them carefully around, Elena buried her head in his chest. And for a moment, she wasn't in this old mention, she was not even in her own time anymore. She was in a beautiful ballroom, in a timeless place and felt the one thing she craved for since her parents died: True happiness.

She slowly opened her eyes to look at him. "I love you." She said and it was unexpected for both of them.

"What?" He thought he was in the middle of one of his endless dreams.

She needed to process what she just said. Was it just the moment that made her feel that way? No. She knew it better. "I said I love you." She repeated and meant every word of it.

He gulped, unable to find the words to express his feelings. Elena softly caressed his cheek before she leaned in and kissed him.

The old woman looked at her grandson who was almost asleep. "It was too girlie, wasn't it?" she asked with a smile.

David yawned. "Yes…but I liked it. I mean she had a brother to worry and a step dad or so who was crazy a vampire ex-boyfriend who was also crazy, no parents and a lot of problems and he managed to make her happy, that was nice. Plus, vampires are cool."

She stroked his head. "David, you may not understand it now, but once you meet someone who makes you happy, don't be scared to tell the person."

He yawned again. "What happened with them?"

She looked questioning at him. "What do you mean, sweetie?"

"Did they stay together?" It was cute how invested he suddenly was in her story.

"Yes. They became a couple and faced all of their problems together?" What problems exactly she didn't mention.

But that answer wasn't enough for the boy. "Did she become a vampire?"

That question surprised his grandmother. She hesitated a while before answering. "No…she did not."

David's eyes widened. "What? No! He loved her so much and she loved him and then she decided to stay human? Why?"

His sudden outburst took her by surprise. "She didn't want to miss out things in life." She tried to calm him down. "She wanted a family."

He shook his head, not believing what he just heard. "But as a vampire she would have had superpowers and she would have had him, wasn't that enough? I mean that's selfish…he did such nice things for her…"

"Its time to sleep." His grandmother said. "And for the record, they both ended up happy."

David seemed to calm down by knowing that, but still he couldn't understand it. He crawled under his blanket. "That was still a nice story grandma." She gently kissed his forehead, the boy was almost asleep. "Good night and have wonderful dreams, my little hero."

"Love you….grandma…" he closed his eyes and fell into a soundless sleep.

She got up and walked to the window, it was still open. As she looked outside she spotted a dark figure watching from the other side of the street. She smiled. "Did you like my story as well?" she whispered, knowing he could hear every word. "I miss you, I wish David could meet you…maybe one day." The figure didn't move. "Thank you…for looking out for our family." She sighed and closed the window, knowing he would always watch from the shadows.

She walked downstairs. Her husband was still awake, watching some old football game.

"Is he finally asleep?" he asked as his wife snuggled against him. "He is such a madcap." She chuckled.

"He is just like Miranda." He husband said amused.

She raised an eyebrow. "And Miranda is just like you." She teased.

He gave her an innocent look. "Hey, don't blame me. At least our boys take after your side of the family."

She smiled. "I saw him tonight, outside David's window." She watched her husband carefully, he looked lost for a moment before he collected himself.

"He will always watch our family." He stated.

She shook her head. "No, he will always watch his family."

They watched the game for a while, but still there was something she couldn't get out of her mind. "Do you ever regret it? The decision you made? That you ask Bonnie to do it?"

He was surprise, they hadn't talked about that topic for several years now. "Why do you ask?"

She shrugged. "Just something David said."

He pulled her closer. "I would lie if I say I never miss it, but no, I don't regret it. You know that the first year was tough, but we managed it."

She hated it to think about their first year after spell, things were difficult back then.

"Did I ever tell you the exact moment when I decided it was the best decision I've ever made?" he asked her with a grin.

"No…." she looked at him with excitement.

"It was that snowy day in December, a bit over a year after the spell. We were at our spot, the mansion and….you told me you were pregnant with Miranda." He softly kissed her hair.

She smiled. That was a good memory. "Look at us. Three kids and two grandchildren…"

He played with her fingers. "I would say three kids and three grandchildren…but…I can be mistaken…" he said mischievously.

Her eyes widened. "Do you know something I don't?"

He turned the TV off. "I maybe talked to our son while you were upstairs."

"Which one?" she asked, annoyed he obviously didn't plan on telling her.

"I'm not saying a thing. He wants to tell you by himself." He got up, ready to go to bed.

She ran after him. "You can't drop such a bomb on me and just go to bed!"

He put his finger under her chin to lift it up. "Don't pretend to be mad"

She rolled her eyes, even now in his age, he was still the same. "Who says I'm pretending?" she asked playfully.

"Well, you can't be mad at me wanna know why?" he asked.

She loved that he still could flirt with her and made a hundreds of butterflies dance in her stomach. "Please enlighten me."

He smirked, still the infamous smirk she fall in love with. "I get to you, you find yourself drawn to me, you think about me even when you don't want to think about me. I bet you even dream about me and right now…you want to kiss me."

She was moved that he still remembered the words he used all those years ago. "You do realize that this conversation ended in me slapping you, right?"

"You really still remember that night." He said almost impressed.

"I haven't forgotten a single moment." She caressed his cheek, like she did when she first confessed her love for him. "It all started….once upon a December…"

He softly kissed her lips. "See, I have still some superpowers, I can always lull you, Elena."

She slapped his arm. "Shut up, Damon."

They went upstairs, hand in hand like they did ever since that night in December.

'And a song someone sings

Once upon a December"