A/N: *long exhale* Ok, so I'm having a really hard time with this. See, whenever I write in canon, well, at least the story keeps going on the show. But closing this one is awfully final. I hope this epilogue is satisfying, and please let me know what you think of it.
Related: I'm considering doing a teeny little one-shot prequel about Elijah. Yay, or nay?
Thanks for for joining me with this story; it's been a helluva ride!
Shameless self-promotion: Twitter - SweetWillowTree
Disclaimer: I do not own The Vampire Diaries.
Elena sighed as she dropped her straightener on the bathroom counter, grabbing her cell phone and holding it to her ear. She'd been on the phone with Jenna since Damon had woken her up with the ringing device, and she was quite ready to be done with conversation.
"Look, Jenna, you're on your honeymoon. I get that you always worry about us, but all of the bad guys are either dead or have been in jail for six years. Just, get back into bed with Ric and I'll see you when you get back."
Without waiting for her sister's answer, Elena hung up, rolling her eyes at her sister's nagging, and throwing the handset on the bed. Sighing into the full length mirror behind the bedroom door, she examined her reflection one last time, adjusting her blouse and picking lint off her jeans. With a scowl, she finally turned and left the room, convinced that it was just going to be one of those days. When she made it to the foyer, she stopped at the side table, picking up the mail and idly browsing through it on her way to the kitchen. When she noticed the blank postcard from Costa Rica, she smiled and skipped through the door.
"Hey, Damon, guess who -"
She froze, eyes narrowing on the two identical heads of messy black hair before she scanned the kitchen in dismay, from the box of Cocoa Puffs to the television on the counter. Damon turned at her hesitation, eyes widening comically at her expression, before pulling the little boy out of his chair and pushing him toward the door.
"Run Leo! Mommy's angry!"
The boy's blue eyes grew round and he darted out of the kitchen, screaming the whole way. Elena glared at Damon as the couple listened to their son barrel up the stairs and slam himself in his room.
"You're hilarious," she deadpanned. "Seriously Damon, you can't keep making me into the bad guy. He already copies all of your bad habits."
To emphasize her point, she roughly removed the box of cereal from his possession and throwing it angrily into the cupboard.
"You know he's not supposed to eat sugary cereal during the week, and -" She turned to the small television, currently set at a news channel, Andie's image and voice broadcast throughout the room. "- And I asked you to please take the TV out of here. He doesn't need to be a slave to it."
Without speaking, Damon rose and pulled Elena into his arms, kissing the crown of her head.
"Are you stressed out because it's his first day?"
"No," she pouted into his chest, wrapping her arms around his waist. "Maybe," she finally admitted.
"Well," he pulled back to meet her eyes, "Just so you know, he did have a whole apple with cheese before the cereal. And he only got the cereal because he's nervous about his first day. He knows it isn't happening again, and that he's damn lucky that I'm the one who made him breakfast this morning. And as for the TV thing... Andie was just here for a whole week. He misses her. It made him feel better."
"I know," Elena sighed, burrowing into his chest again. "You always do that, you always make everyone feel better. I'm just being a bitch."
She stepped away and moved to the fridge, pulling out the ingredients she needed to make Leo his lunch. She hadn't even opened the bread before Damon's arms wrapped around her waist, his lips pressing against her neck.
"You're not a bitch; you're just stressed. And we're both head over heels for you. " His fingers trailed along her abdomen, playing with the buttons of her blouse. "I'll bet I could destress you..."
The pair were so wrapped up that they didn't hear the thumping sound of little feet until it was too late.
"I'm dressed!" came a sharp voice from behind them.
Elena jumped and elbowed Damon, who dodged out of the way, grumbling. They both turned, flushed, to look at the little boy standing in the middle of the kitchen, sending them a knowing look.
"Daddy, you need to leave Mommy alone in the morning. She gets mad when you make her late because you need hugs. Right Mommy?"
"Exactly right, Leo," Elena answered, nodding at him. She scanned his tiny body, checking to make sure he was wearing the clothes they'd picked out the night before. "Do you need me to fix your pants?" she asked, crouching down and reaching for him.
"I need you to fix my pants," she heard Damon mumble from above before he made his way to the door. "I'll just go shower and get ready. Don't leave without me!"
After buttoning Leo's jeans, Elena lifted him to sit on the counter while she made his sandwich. The little boy chattered for a little while, swinging his legs.
"What am I going to be when I grow up?" he asked spontaneously.
Elena frowned, cutting the sandwich into fours. "Well, you could be a lawyer like Daddy?" She looked over at Leo's scowl and laughed. "Or a reporter like me?" Again, he scowled. "Alright grumpy," she teased, leaning over to tickle him. "What do you want to be?"
With an exhausted sigh, he hunched over, his elbows on his knees, chin in his hands. "I haven't decided yet. But I think I'm supposed know before I start school." His brows wrinkled, and he shrugged. "What does Daddy want me to be?"
At that, Elena laughed, remembering the only time they had discussed what path their child would take. "When you were still in my tummy, Daddy thought that you were going to be a girl. No matter what I told him, he always said that you were going to be his princess."
"Gross," Leo grumbled, kicking his legs again. "Felicity always makes me play prince and princess with her, and I think the princesses are boring."
"Well, you have a lot of time to think about it, okay," she pointed out to him, brushing his hair out of his eyes and kissing his forehead. "So why don't you get your schoolbag, and I'll go get Daddy, and we can leave?"
The little boy nodded emphatically, sending her a wide, gap-toothed smile, and hopped down from the counter to run back up to his room. Elena followed him slowly after packing his lunch and placing it on the side table. As she ascended the stairs, and approached her and Damon's bedroom, she heard the distinctive sound of her blow dryer running.
"Oh yes!" she squealed to herself, pulling her cell phone out of her pocket and slipping quietly into the room. "Gotcha!" she exclaimed, taking a quick picture of her husband blow drying his hair before he was able to hide the appliance. "I knew it! I knew you were using my blow dryer, you liar!"
She shrieked when Damon suddenly jumped at her, lifting her from her feet and pinning her on the bed. He plucked the phone from her hand and quickly deleted the picture while she pouted at him.
"I win," he announced, cocking an eyebrow at her and ducking his head for a kiss.
She dodged him so he ended up nuzzling her neck. "Damon," she warned. "Damon, no. We have to go... Leo's waiting for us."
With a massive effort, Damon pulled himself up and off of her. "I've been cockblocked by my own son so many times..."
"Oh," she cooed, throwing his sweater at him and straightening out her own clothes. "That's so cute; you actually thought we were going to have sex this morning."
"Did Tyler take the day off too?" Elena asked, turning the page of her newspaper as the limo cruised down the road.
Damon frowned, looking up from where his Batman was being clobbered by Leo's Spiderman.
"He did, why?"
"Well, with Ric out of town, who's taking care of business?"
"Jeremy," the man answered casually, swooping his action figure back down.
"Jer -?" Elena spluttered, dropping the newspaper. Damon congratulated himself on finally, after five years of marriage, he had succeeded in distracting her from her damned newspaper. "You left my brother in charge?"
As Damon opened his mouth to respond, he was cut off by the boy next to him.
"What if I don't know anyone?" Leo asked his parents.
"Felicity will be there," Elena pointed out.
The boy crossed his arms over his chest. "I'm mad at her; she makes me watch her fashion shows."
"Mmm," Damon hummed, leaning back and stretching out his legs. "Her mom used to make me watch her fashion shows. But at the end, Caroline would -"
The rest of his words were muffled as Elena clapped a hand over his mouth. He pressed a quick kiss to her palm just as Jerry buzzed into the back that they were near the school. Leo's eyes widened in panic, and he climbed into Damon's lap.
"I don't want to go!" he whined, grabbing onto his father's jacket.
Elena reached over to stroke the boy's back. "But you've been so excited, sweetie. And we aren't just leaving you there, okay? We can stay all day if you want."
The car slowed to a stop, and Leo burrowed further into Damon's chest. The man shrugged at his wife, who raised her eyebrows back at him. He knew what she was saying; he would have to carry their son out of the car this time because she refused to be the bad guy. Again.
"C'mon, little man," he grunted, sliding along the seat and out the door that Jerry was holding open. "Aunt Rose will be really sad if you bail on her, remember?"
Unfortunately, that didn't seem to work either, so Damon wound up carrying Leo up the winding path to the front door, Elena next to him carrying the tiny school bag.
"Elena! Damon!" came a shrill shout from behind them.
Leo's head immediately rose, and he scrambled out of his father's arms, landing on his feet and running back. The parents turned to see Caroline and Tyler trailing behind a doll-like blonde girl. The two children met halfway, clasped hands and then scurried back up to the doors of the school.
"I don't think I'll ever understand how that works," Tyler grumbled, scratching the back of his head.
"Why is that?" Elena grunted as Caroline dragged the Salvatore's into a tight embrace.
"She just spent the whole car ride complaining that Leo won't play dress up, or act like a prince. I don't know, all that girly stuff she does," he answered.
"Oh! I just know that they're going to get married someday!" Caroline gushed, making Damon roll his eyes.
Elena laced her fingers between his and squeezed his hand, winking at him as the blonde woman babbled on their way inside the school. They spotted their children at the door of the kindergarten classroom, peeking in nervously before hopping back to discuss with each other. The parents hung back, watching the kids, until Damon felt a tap on his shoulder. He spun to see Rose standing behind him.
"Hey!" he smiled, pulling her in for a hug and a peck on the cheek.
She made the rounds, choosing to shake Tyler's hand, and led the group to the classroom.
"So are the kids excited?" she asked Elena and Caroline.
Damon and Tyler broke off, drifting along the edge of the room, keeping an eye on their children. Not that they would ever admit it, but releasing their offspring into the public school system was a terrifying notion. Once the kids had busied themselves with a book, or rather, Felicity had forced Leo to sit and listen while she told him the story, the men wandered back to their wives.
" - just wish she'd put in something about how she's doing. I worry about her," Rose was saying, flipping a blank postcard over in her hands.
"Another message from Jess?" Damon asked, plucking an identical postcard from Elena's hands and flinging an arm over her shoulders.
At that moment, he felt her phone vibrate against his leg, and she jumped, reaching in to answer the call.
"Hey!" he exclaimed, trying to grab the handset from her. "No cell phones during family... things. That's your rule!"
Elena smirked at him, pecking him on the lips before dancing away. "It's important; I promise, I'll tell you in a bit!"
And with that, she left the classroom, Damon's eyes locked on the spot where he'd last seen her.
"God!" Caroline exclaimed, grabbing him by the front of his jacket and shaking him. "You are so whipped!"
"Proudly," he grinned, winking at Rose, who merely shook her head in exasperation. He looked over at the kids, watching Leo follow Felicity to a bin of blocks. "And it's genetic," he deadpanned, pointing across the room.
"Well," Rose began, glancing up at the clock, "The bell will be ringing soon. If you want to stay and observe, you're more than welcome."
And sure enough, the bell rang, causing several children to jump. Rose took over, corralling the group with practised ease, so that within a few short minutes, the entire classroom was spotless. The teacher started off by establishing rules and explaining the schedule of the day. Sometime during her speech, Elena slid back in the room, and smiled a little at Damon, slipping under his arm once more.
"Phone call?" he mouthed, frowning at her.
"Later," she whispered under her breath.
"Alright," Rose announced, "So if you want to go and say goodbye to your parents, then you may grab a snack and sit down at the table!"
Like a shot, Leo hopped up and ran over to his parents. "Okay, you can leave now," he announced.
The couple looked at each other, then back at him. "Are you sure?" Damon asked.
"Yeah, bye." And without any further discussion, he was gone.
"Wow," Elena breathed. "That was unexpected."
"Yeah," Damon answered, waving a little to Rose and ushering his wife out of the room. "I mean, what are we going to do with the rest of our day? No kid, no work..."
They'd managed to make it as far as the path outside, the blue-eyed man whispering extremely provocative things into Elena's ear, when they were forced to stop.
"Hey! Guys! Wait up!" With clicking heels, Caroline caught up to them, Tyler trailing behind. "Why don't we go and do lunch or something?"
Damon groaned, fidgeting and pouting at Elena. He had a million and one ideas for how they could spend their suddenly free day, and lunch with the Lockwood's was not on the list.
"Actually, I have some work to do, and Damon promised to clear out some stuff in storage, so..."
"Oh," the blonde winked, nudging her own husband lightly. "I get it. Well then, we'll see you later. Or did you want us to drop Leo off for you, in case you get lost in 'storage'."
"Funny, Care," Damon said flatly, waving at Jerry to start the car. "See you later!"
He skipped over to where the car had pulled up, holding the door open for Elena and following her into the car. Where he abruptly launched himself onto her neck.
"Yes! Car sex!" he blurted, gripping her hip in one hand, and a handful of her hair in the other.
"Damon," she moaned, flattening her hands on his chest in an attempt to push him back. "Damon, we need to talk about something."
"Then talk," he whispered, unbuttoning the top of her blouse.
"It's about that phone call." Damon sighed and pulled away, sliding across the seat. "Thank you," Elena smiled, sitting up on her knees and taking his hand. "So, do you remember that really, really, great weekend we had in July?"
"Oh yeah," he answered, closing his eyes and leaning back, one hand squeezing her thigh. "My dream is to bring you to Greece at least once a month."
"Well," she leaned in, just hovering over his lips, "I can pretty much guarantee that we won't be able to have another weekend like that for about another three years."
Blue eyes snapped open and narrowed on her brown orbs. "Why are you teasing me, Elena?"
She smiled at him, and he noticed for the first time that she had tears in her eyes. "So, just wondering, but how badly did you want a 'Daddy's Little Princess'?"
For a moment, all Damon could do was blink confusedly. When he realized what she was saying, he sat up and slid to the floor, unbuttoning the bottom of her blouse.
"Damon, this really isn't the time to -"
He shushed her, opening the shirt and pressing feather-light kisses to the pink line that ran down her stomach, evidence of Leo's birth, intersecting with her older, and much less pleasant, scar.
"Damon, what are you -?"
"Hello Princess," he cooed. "Do you like ponies? Daddy's going to buy you a pony today."
Elena giggled, slipping her fingers into her husband's hair and massaging his scalp. "Maybe you should hold off on the pony until we make sure that the baby's actually -"
"Sh!" he hissed, pressing a finger to her lips, eyes still locked on her stomach. "Mommy's going to jinx you. But we both know that you're going to be my little girl, right?"
"Ugh," the brunette snapped, cupping his face and pulling him up. "Stop talking and kiss me already!"
Jerry rolled his eyes, turning his music up a little louder and deciding that, for Mr Salvatore's sake, he'd circle the block a few times.
After all, he was used to it by now.