Disclaimer: "The Vampire Diaries" and all of its characters belong to the CW Network and its producers.
Summary: Damon and Elena have been best friends since they were kids. As teenagers, they discover the passion that could be had in their childhood friendship. Soon, they begin a relationship that everyone believed was destined to last forever. It's only when high school graduation comes along that Damon decides to give Elena her wings. He packs his bags and disappears, leaving Elena heartbroken. Ten years later, Damon returns to Mystic Falls with the sole purpose to make amends with Elena. He finally realizes that Elena was his forever all along and wants her back. Little does Damon know that Elena has moved on and is about to get married. Damon is prepared to do anything to change her mind and make her his again.
"Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born." –Anais Nin
Chapter One: Reminisce
"Come on, Damon! If you don't hurry up we're going to miss our chance at catching more tadpoles than Matt and Tyler."
"Okay, I'm hurrying! And there's no way those two dummies are going to catch more than us," Damon told Elena.
"Yes, there is. Tyler is so fast at catching them."
"Not faster than us, Elena. We're the best tadpole catchers around. Matt and Tyler are only good for falling into the creek. And that only scares the tadpoles away."
Elena giggled. "You're so funny, Damon." She grabbed for his hand and entwined their fingers. She began to pull him along. "Come on. We're almost there."
It happened then. When an eight year old Elena grabbed onto eight year old Damon's hand, he felt that undeniable spark.
Damon awoke from his dream. He slowly sat up in his bed and rubbed at his eyes. It was funny that his memories of Elena had returned the past three weeks. He had to admit that over the ten years he'd been gone he had always been reminded of Elena in some way. He had dreamed multiple times of his best childhood friend. But the dreams he'd been having lately were his greatest memories of her. That one in particular struck a chord within him to his very bone. He stared down at his hand. He could clearly remember the way her tiny hand had fit into his perfectly, as if destiny had predetermined it.
He looked over at the digital clock next to his bed. 6:27 AM. Damon swung his legs off the bed and sat on the edge. He might as well get up and take his shower. After all, it was only another thirty-three minutes till his alarm went off. One thing Damon was not was a morning person. He hated the mornings with a passion. Woes to him for picking a career where it was expected of him to keep a morning schedule. Of course then he could pick his own hours as soon as he got an assignment from his editor.
He was a reporter. Damon's lips quirked. Not just any reporter though. He was well known for writing pieces that challenged the way people looked at their world. He'd always wanted to make a difference, and with his reports he finally felt as if he was. He had received many fan letters that thanked him for always striving to change the way that his readers perceived things; to make them see that one idea could change the world; to allow them to believe that even one person could cause a revolution. He couldn't have asked for more.
But that was only his career. Yes, his career was important. But the journey he was about to embark on was all about sharing it. He wanted to share his life with the only person that had ever mattered to him. The thing was, for that to happen he had to make amends first.
Damon sighed while running a hand through his shaggy black hair. After ten years he wasn't so sure how Elena would react to his return. After all, he had disappeared, only leaving her a note to say goodbye. He had been too much of a coward to do it in person. The worst part of it was, he had blindsided her with it.
He closed his eyes and searched deep for the memory of those sparkling deep chocolate doe eyes as they had celebrated their graduation from Mystic Falls High School. She had ran up to him and jumped with all of her might into his arms. She had giggled. Damon smiled as he recalled her school girl giggle. It was so cute. And then she had pulled away to place a kiss on his lips. It was then that Damon frowned. That kiss had been the missing link to sealing the deal. When her lips had touched his he knew for a fact that the best thing for him to do was leave.
He hadn't kept in touch with anyone back in Mystic Falls. He spoke to his mother at least once a month, but they had a silent understanding that nothing was to be mentioned about anyone back home. Especially about Elena. Then again, Damon also knew that if something bad happened to her, his mother would alert him. Since she had never said Elena's name, Damon could only guess that no bad luck had ever come her way.
He was basically flying in blind. He'd come to the realization that he wanted Elena back a little over five months ago. Closing in on turning thirty could do that to someone. When he had come to terms with that, then he had planned a strategy to win her over. Back whenever they were teenagers, Elena had been a very stubborn and strong-willed person. Damon hoped that the years had changed that. Maybe she was a little calmer and laid back now. He snorted. Yeah, he could keep on hoping.
Damon knew it was a long shot to get Elena to forgive him, but he had to try. After ten years he finally came to the conclusion that Elena was his forever. He'd always known it, but he had buried it under his conscience that insisted that she get to know herself outside of their relationship. He had wanted her to spread her wings. She couldn't have done that hanging on to him. So, he had sacrificed his happiness. Yes, she had been heartbroken, but in the long run, she would understand that he had done it for her. It had been all for her.
Over the years he hadn't asked for information about her. As a reporter he had endless resources to find out anything he wanted to about Elena. But he had refused. He had kept himself shut out of her life. He had chosen to walk away, so he had no right to know anything about her. It had been difficult, but he'd done it for ten years. Even now after he made the plans to return to Mystic Falls, he didn't look her up. He wanted to be surprised with how she turned out.
Hell, she might not even be in Mystic Falls. Damon growled at the thought. But it would be his first stop. If she wasn't there, her family would know where he could find her. He had to start somewhere.
Until his flight left in four days time, Damon was only left with his memories of Elena. It would have to sustain him until he found her again. And then he could start working on getting her to forgive him. He would do anything to make her his again. Now all he had to do was get her to believe it. Hopefully, no obstacles would stand in the way.
Their mothers had been friends. Miranda Sommers and Sofia Conroy had met when they were eleven years old. Destiny had brought them together when Sofia, the new girl, had bumped into Miranda at lunch time. Both of their trays of food had splattered to the floor below. Most girls would've started yelling at the other saying, "It's all your fault! If you weren't so dumb, you would've seen where you going!" Instead, Miranda had bent down to help Sofia clean up the mess. From then on, the two had been inseparable.
It was in high school when Miranda and Sofia had caught the eyes of future doctor, Grayson Gilbert, and future lawyer, Giuseppe Salvatore. Grayson and Miranda had married right out of high school, while Giuseppe and Sofia had opted to take it slow. They married as soon as Sofia had graduated with a degree in medical social work. It had been tough because Giuseppe was just then entering law school. It was during that time that Sofia had seen what stress could do to a relationship. There were many occurrences where Sofia had been ready to throw in the towel, but Miranda wouldn't let her. "You're not a quitter, Sofia. You never have been, and I'm not going to let you start now. You love Giuseppe and because of that you're going to work harder to make this work."
Sofia had been forever indebted to her best friend.
When Grayson was completing his residency at Richmond General Hospital, Miranda announced she was pregnant. Sofia had been over the moon for her. It was then that she pulled her close and let her in on her own secret that she was carrying. They had been so happy. They had stayed up half the night making plans for their children. They had daydreamed of the play dates that their two children would have. They would be best friends like they were.
That bond held true throughout Damon and Elena's lives. Pictures lined the Gilbert and Salvatore homes of the two of them together. Like Miranda and Sofia, they had been inseparable as well.