Light in August
Author Note: This is the first fan fiction i have written here and i hope it can entertain and amuse. Please consider telling me what you think of it with a review, it would be incredibly encouraging. Please don't be shy about critiquing.
I would like to thank tremolux for the story that pushed me into writing this, much love and i hope you update soon.
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This story continues from season 2 episode 22 "As i Lay Dying", the season finale.
Copyright notice: The story and idea are my creation, all rights are reserved. The characters and general background story belong to their creator. For which they have my thanks.
Chapter 1 - The Proposition
The sweet summer air had turned bitter cold; insidiously penetrating, and full of dark intent. Elena sat with her back against the familiar gravestone, rough stone tempered with patches of soft moss. Her legs were drawn up towards her body, and her journal lay open against them. The pen, held apathetically in her right hand, rested against the page, staining the paper with black ink.
Unable to look at the page any longer Elena looked around the desolate graveyard. It seemed smaller than it was, with the forest encroaching on it from all sides; however, she felt a quiet stillness settle within her when she visited this place. Idly she wondered why that was, why was she so comfortable surrounded by death? 'I suppose it is in my blood to be this way;' glancing at the page she realized death had become like an old friend you never really cared for, but who was always present. The names in her diary haunted her, a single page covered only in names; names of the dead, her mother, her father, her biological mother, Vicky, Aunt Jenna and so many others. She started wondering if she should include Caroline, she had died too, kind off; Jeremy as well, he had died once, or was it twice? Caught up in the mathematics of death she barely noticed the tears running down her face. It was not the painfully forced sobbing of immediate grief but simply a river of sorrow and calm despair. With an effort of will the tears stopped and dried on her face.
It was getting dark, well darker, the graveyard was never bright Elena thought, and began to formulate the latest events in her mind to bring herself back to the present.
The curse was broken. Damon was alive, barely, having received the antidote just in time. Stefan was gone; Elena did not doubt Katherine's word. It was so like Stefan to give his life for his brother. He had gone with Klaus, probably never to return.
Elena felt like her feelings were scattered, dominated by anger, sadness and a sense of overwhelming frustration from feeling so powerless. So many things had happened that she had no control over. Finding herself on her feet and pacing between the gravestones she stopped, gathered her things and headed to the car; intent on getting home fast, wanting nothing more than to curl up in her bed, and rest like the dead.
On the way home Elena reminded herself how strange it was that she would visit a graveyard in the middle of the night after being at the Salvatore's. She realized that she had given up on being the same girl she was before everyone started dying. She had tried so hard, but all in vain. She was not the same, and she never would be. Perhaps it had never been possible, and she had never been intended to be normal. Perhaps what she was would have its charms and pleasures too; her thoughts cut off when she turned into her driveway. She was home.
Inside the house she was met with silence interrupted only by Alaric's snores. In the kitchen she found a note from Jeremy, hastily scribbled, telling her he went to Bonnie's. A tension in her, relaxed, and she knew that a part of her had expected more horror and suffering. She went to her room to sleep but decided she needed a shower to wash away the smell of both graveyard and a decaying Damon. She almost smiled as she murmured, 'I even smell like death'.
'There is nothing sexier' said her voice back to her; she spun around towards the sound and her window. Perched on the sill was Katherine, her hands beside her on the window sill insouciantly balancing her body between the dark cold night and the bright warm indoors, as if between life and death.
Elena stared at Katherine, taking in her appearance, she wore the same as the last time she saw her; a simple blouse and blue jeans, though it did not matter; she wore anything well. Her dark brown hair cascaded in curls and surrounded her perfectly symmetrical face, she was beautiful. Even precariously balanced on a window she retained that languidly sensuous air she had, so confident of her charm. A perfectly coordinated smile and the raising of one eyebrow preceded, 'It's perfectly alright to stare, I do too'
Elena looked away and decided to ignore both of the previous disturbing comments and wondered, 'What the hell are you doing here Katherine?' She put as much scorn as she could into her voice, but could not muster up a matching scowl, and her face betrayed her weariness.
'I'm not sure,' Katherine pondered, 'I supposed I wanted to see you. The curse is broken. I've worked for this moment for over three hundred years; knowing that one of my blood would have to die for me to be free. Yet you live; and, I'm glad.'
Surprised Elena said nothing; from nowhere anger suddenly burned within her and in her fury she said 'Your fault! They are dead, so many dead, and it's your fault! If you had not come here nobody would have gotten hurt.'
Katherine laughed, a high lilting beautiful laugh, but cold. The icy wind blew through the window and disturbed her hair.
'If I had not come here? If Stefan and Damon had not come, if Klaus had not known, if you were not who you are.
Give up those futile thoughts Elena, you are not a child to play such games, we are Petrovas. We see truth and we face it.'
Elena's anger was gone as fast as it had come, swept away by the wind and the raw truth of Katherine's words. Neither blame nor self-pity was productive, or enjoyable. 'At least close the window,' Elena muttered, and sat down in a chair.
Katherine produced a small smile as she was welcomed, if less than genially, and ignored her. Moving faster than the human eye could follow her body suddenly lay outstretched on Elena's bed; arranging one foot so it lay upon the other.
'Comfortable?' Elena asked sarcastically. Katherine's smile grew wider, 'Supremely' she retorted.
Seeing Katherine lying on her bed, looking so much like herself, but subtly different in ways she must have acquired over her long life; Elena became curious about how they were the same. 'Why do we look alike?' Elena asked.
'You know this, we are blood,' Katherine answered with annoyance. Before reconsidering, 'No we're not' raising herself on her arms and tilting her head as she said 'We are blood, but we are not family, so long has passed between my birth and yours we are no more family than your neighbour.'
'Exactly!' Elena exclaimed, 'Besides, even family, except for twins, do not look exactly alike'. Pausing for a while before she said 'We are different'.
'Yes we are,' Katherine agreed, 'we could not have been needed to break an ancient curse just because we are mind bogglingly beautiful. Klaus needed a vampire, a werewolf and one of us. Specifically, one of us; not just any human.'
'So what are we?' Elena whispered. Her voice so low it was almost inaudible, even to Katherine.
'I don't know,' Katherine answered frowning, 'maybe we'll find out together,' she said, looking intently at Elena as she did. Looking away, Elena let out a small noise of ambivalence.
Silence settled on the room and Elena relaxed into the chair, realizing that she was far more comfortable around Katherine than she probably should be; she was a murderous psychopath after all, wasn't she?
An odd idea struck Elena then, and ignoring her instincts which told her this was not a bright thing to do; she said, her voice barely suppressing a laugh, 'Both Damon and Stefan have bitten and fed on my blood whereas you have not. So much for you being the bad guy' having barely left her mouth the words caused a panic, 'what the hell was I thinking bringing up blood with a vampire, great subject Elena' she scolded herself.
'Bad guy,' Katherine said, 'how precious. You still cling to your quaint worldview though you know very well that you are far beyond simple good and evil'
Katherine touched two fingers to her neck, the spot, which on Elena still sported fang marks.
'I see, our boys have wronged you in this regard, Stefan fed on you when he was nothing but raw hunger, a revenant. Damon attacked you recently; dying and out of his mind. Not very conducive for an enjoyable experience.'
'Enjoyable?' Elena snorted, 'I don't think being food for the undead is very enjoyable'
An amused Katherine informed her, 'Then you're doing it wrong. Blood is not only sustenance; it is life, passion and a sum total of its owner's experiences. I would be more than happy to show you,' she finished with a seductive smile.
'Is she asking my permission to drink my blood? This is crazy! I wonder what it would be like to be fed upon by Katherine; to come so close to death.'
Suddenly brave but nervous she brazenly said 'Sure Katherine, I'll let you drink my blood, if I can drink yours,' Confident Katherine would deny her, Elena smiled tauntingly.
'Oh certainly; that would only be fair, and pleasurable' Katherine smiled, showing her sharp fangs. Rising from the bed she walked over to Elena and offered a hand to her.
Elena's eyes widened and she stuttered 'N-Now? You want to do it now?'
'Take my hand Elena' Katherine said softly.
Throwing caution, fear and propriety out the window Elena put her hand into the identical one that was offered, only the colour of their nail polish creating a contrast between them. Katherine led her to the bed and laid her down.
'Take of you necklace Elena' Katherine told her, Elena obliged, 'and your shirt.'
'My shirt? Why?' Elena asked, her voice trembling. 'Well we don't want to spill anything and stain it, do we?'
Elena acquiesced and obeyed, taking off her shirt; looking away when Katherine did the same, leaving them both in their bras.
Katherine hovered above Elena as she swept away the hair that covered her neck, the opposite side of Damon's marks. 'I don't do seconds' Katherine whispered. Elena's breath was coming faster as Katherine placed a kiss on her neck where her blood flowed. 'Will it hurt?' Elena asked breathlessly.
'Only in a good way' Katherine whispered back as she extended her fangs, descending on Elena.
Katherine sunk her fangs into Elena's neck, releasing a flood of sweet blood. Elena's eyes flew open wide before sinking down half closed, her eyes unfocused. She let out a quiet moan; thinking only, 'She was right'.