((A continuation of the Elijah/Elena saga as seen in my previous fan-fiction Memories Bring You Near. We leave off at the end of their clandestine meeting during Season 2 Episode 20 "The Last Day" when Elena is taken home by Stefan to await Klaus. After Klaus takes Elena and the events of the ritual are set in motion, this follows Elijah through Episode 21 "The Sun Also Rises" and into the first scenes of Episode 22 "As I Lay Dying". This is mostly an Elijah fan-fic with some hints of Elijah/Elena. Flashbacks are inevitable. WARNING: Spoilers for the end of Season 2))
Disclosure: There are some actual quotes from TVD Season 2 Episodes 21 and 22 that are used to provide context. These quotes are being used in a fan-fiction for entertainment purposes only. No copyright intended.
Alone in his apartment once more, Elijah lay stretched out on the leather sofa staring at the blankness of the white stucco ceiling above him and wishing, in that moment, that his mind could be just as blank and just as void. He stared intently, trying hard not to blink—blinking would mean that his eyes would be shut, and even if they were shut for just a second, he knew he would be thinking of the events of the past two hours –of Liliya…and of Elena.
Her human scent still lingered in the air around him. A human had never really been in his apartment before—well, except for the cable installer who had arrived that Saturday morning inside one of those absurd six hour windows the company gives. But, he had been middle-aged, balding, a bit rotund, far too chatty and much less attractive than Elena.
Wait. Was he attracted to Elena?
He finally forced himself to blink and there she was behind his eyelids for the briefest of moments—beautiful and vulnerable and kissing him…
Elijah jolted up stiffly and swallowed the catch in his throat.
He had been completely out of his head when he had kissed her. His emotions were all over the place tonight—he couldn't possibly be held responsible for his actions.
Surely it was all a mistake.
And one he could have fixed if Elena hadn't steadied his hand when he had tried to compel her.
After all, she was a seventeen year-old girl and he was a thousand year-old vampire.
It wouldn't be right, especially with his baggage—family vengeance, a rogue, sociopathic sibling, and a dead former fiancé who haunts him in the form of a beautiful teenage girl.
And, well, if there is something with Elena, perhaps it's probably best left unexplored for now.
Though his heart ached a little at the thought, he was well trained in keeping what his heart wanted behind a self-imposed stone wall.
But, his head, of course, agreed with this proposed logic and that's all that mattered. After all, he is nothing if not logical. Logic and morals had always been his greatest strengths first as a human and later, as a vampire.
With Niklaus being impulsive, Rebekah stubborn, Kol quiet and brave, Henrik impressionable and Finn…well, Finn being Finn, someone had to keep his siblings together and in check—the head that told the body what to do.
And that was always him.
He turned to sit on the edge of the couch and ran a hand through his dark hair. After a moment, he reached out instinctually for the glass of bourbon sitting neatly next to its half-empty bottle in front of him on the glass coffee table.
He knows he will need to feed before his confrontation with Klaus tonight, but after what happened earlier with Elena, for now, he needs to keep with something stronger—something that will help him forget.
He took a sip from the tumbler as his eyes wandered to the overturned liquor cart and the partially caved-in wall, evidence of the evening's events.
He thinks of the words he spoke to Elena—words meant for Liliya.
He thinks of Stefan finding them and their parting words when she left and how she had touched him and looked at him.
He takes in a sharp breath, rolls his eyes and immediately swallows the rest of the glass in one gulp, before reaching for the bottle.
But, just as his hand wraps around the neck to pour himself another drink, his cell phone rings and he pulls his hand back. Leaning to one side, with the glass still in his other hand, he reaches over to his suit jacket lying neatly on one arm of the sofa and pulls the black, slender mobile out of the front inside pocket.
After seeing Stefan Salvatore on the caller ID, he hits Answer on the touch screen.
"Yeeeellow" he said in a mockingly cheery voice.
Stefan's voice sounds on the other end, "Oh, my God….Are you drunk?"
Elijah's face scrunched, "Drunk? No."
"High?" Stefan inquired
"No." Elijah said looking through the bottom of his tumbler before setting the glass down on the table.
"Well, then what the hell is up with the 'yeeeellow'?"
"Ah…Well, I just thought I'd try something new to torment you and it clearly has had the desired effect. So, what can I do for you Mr. Salvatore? I thought we were maintaining radio silence."
"I just wanted to let you know that Alaric and I are on our way to your apartment right now. And I know you probably haven't fed, so I'm bringing you some blood. We should be there in about twenty minutes…Well, Rick's driving, so you better make it forty minutes."
"Hey!" Alaric's voice sounded in the background
Elijah leaned back on the sofa, taking this revelation in.
This was a change of plan. He had originally planned on meeting them and Bonnie at the mansion. Why would they be coming here? Something had to be up, but he kept his trademark calm and went fishing.
"And Klaus has Elena?" he asked
There was a silence on the other end for a moment before Stefan responded.
"He came for her about an hour ago. She went with him willingly."
Elijah closed his eyes and brought his hand to his mouth and rubbed his index finger over his upper lip. Of course she did.
It was really happening, then.
Elijah pulled his hand away and cleared his throat, ready with his next probing question—one he suspected would reveal the true nature of Stefan's change of plan.
"So I'm assuming that Damon has learned from his impulsive actions and not gone and done something incredibly stupid to jeopardize the plan."
Again, there is vocal silence on the other end. The only thing Elijah hears is a car door slam, presumably Stefan getting into Rick's SUV.
Then the silence was finally penetrated by Stefan's sigh.
"You know how brothers are, Elijah…"
The New World- 1044 A.D.
A teenage girl crouched in the woods under the cedar trees gathering kindling in a large cloth sling wrapped around her left shoulder.
Suddenly, without warning, a large group of deer, nearly seven deep, galloped past her, the force of their numbers causing a gust of wind that knocked her off her feet.
After she catches her breath, pulls herself off her heels, and brushes her windblown bangs out of her eyes, she resumes her work.
It was strange to see that large of a herd, moving so fast in one direction.
Then, only seconds go by before another large, swift wind passes through the open meadow behind her and out of the corner of her eye she swears she sees several dark figures.
However, when she tentatively glances over her shoulder, she sees no one.
She crinkles her nose and moves back to gathering her kindling.
When her sling is full, she nods in satisfaction and hauls herself to standing position, only to turn around and run square into a cold, hard body.
The girl cries in surprise and the force of the hit sends her sling off of her shoulder and onto the muddy ground.
She finds herself gazing up, wide-eyed, into the face of the young man now standing before her. He's in his mid to late twenties, with a tall, strong build, fair hair and piercing eyes. It didn't take long before she recognized him.
He was one of Esther and Mikael's sons. She had seen him several times in the village, but they had never spoken.
And he didn't speak now.
He just cocked his head to one side and studied her long and hard as she began to slowly back away from him. But, there was something in his manner and in his eyes—mainly his eyes—that also made her want to stay very still.
His eyes certainly did not look normal. They had changed color and now had dark lines beneath them.
He was moving toward her now, stealthily…
The young man froze and let out an exasperated sigh before closing his eyes for a few moments, allowing the lines below them to slowly disappear. When they had vanished, he turned his head over his shoulder to look behind him and it was as he moved slightly aside, that the girl saw three more figures reveal themselves on the crest of the hill in the distance.
One was a tall man with long dark, braided hair. The other two were blonde—a man and a woman. The girl recognized them as more of Esther and Mikael's children. The oldest, the dark one, she recognized as Elijah. He was on the village council with Mikael.
Elijah stepped forward, his sword strapped to his hip.
"Come, brother!" he called
Niklaus balls his fists and rolls his eyes, then giving the girl one more longing glance, turns his back on her and, with inhuman speed, runs to the top of the hill to join his family.
"Do you have to be such a killjoy?" he asked with distain as the girl fainted from shock in the meadow below them.
"You gave me your word that you would try," Elijah said with narrowed eyes.
Rebekah comes from behind Elijah and rests her chin on his shoulder.
"Why can't we have just one taste? I'm tired of chasing wild game. It's dull."
Elijah inhaled a sharp breath, shrugging his sister off his shoulder.
"It's only dull when you lose the herd because someone can't keep his urges to himself," he said eyeing Niklaus as the latter brushes past him haughtily.
"Leave Niklaus alone, Elijah, we don't all have your self-control—"
"When I want your opinion, Finn, I'll ask for it." Elijah said sternly, grabbing his younger brother by the collar.
Then, after staring at him for a long moment, released him and marched off after Niklaus.
When they reached the bottom of the other side of the hill, Niklaus stopped beneath a fir tree and leaned on it, rubbing his right hand contemplatively over the bark.
Elijah came up behind him and put a reassuring hand on his brother's shoulder.
"I know it's hard for you, Niklaus…" he said, looking over his shoulder at his sister and Finn coming down the hill, "But, after Rebekah killed that villager during the burning of the white oak, Father wants us to try it this way for awhile. Rebekah has made her first human kill and so has Kol, but you and Finn have not. There is still time to break the habit before it starts. We can't be reckless—killing humans simply out of blood lust. We are on hard terms with our neighbors as it is. We must hunt only what we need to survive and if we are to hunt, we need to be less conspicuous and hunt game, not humans. I need you at least try so that the others will follow. Please, brother?"
Niklaus lowered his hand from the tree and turned to face his brother with a sigh.
"And just how are we to hunt if we have lost the herd?" he asked in a mocking voice
Elijah smiled, "Who said we've lost the herd?"
Niklaus smirked, narrowing his eyes in confusion.
"Kol's still tracking them over the ridge" Elijah said, looking to his siblings with raised eyebrows and crossed arms, "because he's taking this seriously."
"Elijah, Kol's still tracking them because he's always hungry." Finn corrected
"Tenk de mennesker ... ikke hjort. Tenk de er mennesker…" Kol repeated to himself over and over as he waited for his siblings on the top of the ridge, lying flat on his stomach so as not to be detected upwind by the herd grazing below near the waterfalls.
"A deer cannot taste as good as a human, Kol, no matter how hard you try to convince yourself," Niklaus said as he shimmied up alongside his brother on the grass.
"Don't listen to him, Kol. He's cross with me for not letting him eat the human girl." Elijah said, sliding up on Kol's other side.
"So that is where you've been?" Kol asked, turning to Niklaus, "Am I the only one taking this seriously?"
Elijah smiles at this.
"You mean are you the only one wanting to play Elijah's little 'romp in the forest' game?" Rebekah asked, coming up alongside Niklaus, "If so, then the answer is yes."
Niklaus smirked, raising an eyebrow across Kol to Elijah.
"That and he's always hungry," Finn added, crawling up next to Rebekah
"I am not always hungry!" Kol cried defensively
"Yes you are" his siblings chime in together at once as their eyes move to survey the herd below them.
"I'll go first and show you how it's done." Elijah said, using his arms to lift himself up to a standing position and in a flash he moved to the bottom of the ridge.
It isn't long before the buck of the heard is on its side, struggling under Elijah's powerful grasp as he drinks from the animal's neck.
"That doesn't look so hard." Rebekah scoffed, looking over to Finn with a challenge. He smiled back and, seconds later, they are both taking down a doe less than a hundred feet from Elijah.
But, when it is Kol's turn, he's not quite quick enough. The deer he rushes takes off behind a cypress tree near the ravine edge. The tree deflects Kol and sends him ricocheting into the water below the falls.
"Kol!" Elijah cried, trying to sound concerned and hold back his laughter as he wades into the riverbed after his brother as Rebekah and Finn watch from the shore.
Kol emerged from the shallow water, shaking head like a dog drying itself. With a wince, he staggers as he pulls himself to his feet and bends over with his hands on his knees to regain his breath.
As Elijah approached him, he saw Kol crane his head in curiosity as he looked down into the crystal water. And after a moment, reaches his hand down plucked something from the riverbed.
"Kol, are you alright?" Elijah asked, finally reaching his brother.
"I'm fine," Kol answered, rubbing his fingers over something he's now holding in the palm of his opposite hand, "and I found something."
Elijah comes to his brother's side and stares down at the object in Kol's hand—it's a stone. A white, almost translucent, elongated stone.
Kol's finger runs along its smooth surface once more before he hands it over to Elijah, who holds it up to the light.
"It looks like the moon," Kol notes, "don't you think?"
Elijah studies it hard for a moment, then answered.
"Yes. It does. I've never seen anything like it before." He lowered the rock, handing it back to Kol, and smiled, "We should take it back to mother. She might like it."
Kol smirked and coed, "Or you could give it to Liliya as a wedding gift."
"Hold your tongue, Little Brother!" Elijah chuckled, smacking Kol lovingly upside the head. The force of the blow jolts Kol forward, forcing him to catch himself before he falls into the water as his older brother wades back to the shore.
"Is he alright?" Rebekah asked as Finn offers Elijah his hand and pulls him up the rock face.
"He's fine," Elijah replied, "But, we'll have to find him something to eat. He's scared off the rest of the herd."
Then releasing Finn's hand, he looked around—to the clearing, to the trees, to the ridge….
His face suddenly filled with concern.
"Where is Niklaus?"
With the aid of vampire speed, it didn't take long for Rebekah, Kol, Finn and Elijah to track their path back through the woods.
As they came to the hill at the crest of the meadow, Elijah stopped abruptly, flinging both muscular arms out to halt his siblings as well.
His face hardens and he lets out a long sigh. Immediately, the others see what he does—Niklaus at the bottom of the hill, in the meadow below the cedar trees, feeding on the still unconscious human girl with her bag of kindling on the ground at her side.
He had made his first human kill.
When Elijah opened his apartment door thirty minutes later, Stefan tossed him a handful of blood bags across the threshold.
"AB positive and only two days old," he said as Alaric wrinkled his nose next to him.
Elijah studied the supply in his hand then looked back to his guests.
"I am not some ruffian, Stefan, I have my own blood supply," he scoffed
"Well, I wasn't sure and I thought this might be quicker since we should really get on the road."
"Very well… just let me get my jacket," Elijah said as he turned back into his apartment and crossed the room, setting the blood bags on the kitchen table.
"And, I have to say that I am impressed by the time you made. I wasn't expecting you for another ten minutes," he adds with a smirk
Alaric shot Stefan a look as they both crossed the threshold.
"Well, you're a cautious driver..." Stefan said under his breath
When they were in the foyer, their attention turned back to Elijah as he retrieved his suit jacket from the leather sofa and threw it over his shoulders, careful to pull down the cuffs and smooth out the creases on each arm. He then disappeared into the kitchen for a few moments before returning with what looked like a reusable bag from the local market.
Alaric smiled, "You shop at the market?"
Elijah smirked as he began placing the blood supply in the bag, "I have to. Though I am older than most vampires and have enough control over my cravings not to require human food on a regular basis, over the years I've found that if the neighbors don't see a grocery bag every once in a while, they get suspicious—especially in a town like Mystic Falls."
"So, if you don't eat on a regular basis, what do you do with the food?" Alaric asked as Elijah pulled up the handles of the bag.
"Well, I eat some of it. In fact, I'm quite partial to Nutella," he said, turning to Stefan, "Have you ever had Nutella?"
Stefan shakes his head
"You should try it. It's delicious."
"Okay…I'll… do that…" Stefan said with a raised eyebrow, giving Alaric an unsure look as the latter brings the back of his hand to his mouth, trying to hold in his laughter.
Vampires discussing Nutella? Only in Mystic Falls.
"But in answer to your question," Elijah continued, seemingly un-phased by their antics, "I give most of the food away at the end of the week to shelters, churches or food banks. Of course, they look at me like I'm insane. But how am I supposed to eat that much food myself? It's wasteful."
Stefan and Alaric share another comical look as Elijah straightens the lapels on his jacket.
"So, shall we depart, Mr. Salvatore?"
Stefan nodded, leading the way out the door, followed by Alaric.
Elijah grabbed the tote and carried it stiffly at his side and when they are all through the threshold, he shuts the door behind them.
It only took fifteen minutes for them to reach the mansion. The car ride is a quiet one with Elijah in the back with Stefan consuming the blood bags. Stefan was right when he said the blood was fresh, and in a fight with an original, the fresher the better. But, if Bonnie can deliver on her end tonight, it won't matter how fresh the blood is.
Elijah throws aside the last empty bag as the SUV comes to a halt on the dirt drive.
"I could have met you, you know. You needn't have come for me."
"Well, I got the feeling that something was going down", Stefan said, "I'm not quite sure exactly what yet, knowing my brother, but I thought it would be safer if you stuck with us until the last possible minute."
Elijah sat back on the leather seat and frowned. So it was something to do with Damon. He should have known.
"Elijah, would you mind refreshing Alaric and I on what's going to happen?" Stefan asked as he pulled the latch and opened his door and Alaric and Elijah followed suit.
As they closed the doors behind them and started up the drive toward the house, Elijah explained the ritual.
"The sacrifice is completed in stages as the full moon sets. First the werewolf is killed, then the vampire and finally the doppelganger. Once Elena dies, the curse will be broken and Klaus will become hybrid."
"So when do we attack?" Stefan asked as they circle up in the front yard.
"Elena's death will trigger his werewolf side. He'll be vulnerable during the transformation—that's when Bonnie comes in."
"And you're sure Bonnie will survive this"
"If she can deliver Klaus to the brink of death, I'll finish the job myself."
It was then, as if on cue, that Stefan's phone rang and he hurried away from the group to answer it.
"Damon," he said and immediately Elijah's interest was piqued. He never liked spying, but in these types of situations, vampire hearing can be extremely helpful. He tunes in to the conversation.
"You're not going to like what I am about to say," he hears Damon's voice, shaken, on the other end of the line.
"Is the sacrifice happening or not?" Stefan asked and Elijah immediately straightened. He had a sense when Stefan called him at his apartment earlier that something was up. So Damon had been planning something after all. It was clear that Stefan didn't know the details, just that Damon had gone rogue and was trying to stop the ritual.
"It's happening. I tried to stop it, but it got…complicated," Damon answered and Elijah could hear him take a shot of whiskey. Drinking is never a good sign.
"We're sticking with the original plan," Stefan said, trying to keep a stiff upper lip, "We're meeting Bonnie right now—"
"He's got Jenna, Stefan." Damon interrupted in a defeated voice
Stefan immediately turned to Alaric at about the same time as Elijah did.
What would Klaus want with Jenna? Elijah thought for a moment then, it suddenly hit him why Damon's voice sounds so defeated, so upset.
It was revenge.
Klaus had plans. Damon ruined the plans.
Now someone close to those they care about had to pay. It was one of Niklaus' oldest tricks, but one that never went out of style.
Still, Elijah empathized with Alaric. He did not deserve this.
"He got Katherine to lure her out of the house." Damon continued
"What is it? What's wrong?" Alaric asked, stepping forward
"He's going to use her as the vampire in the ritual." Damon said finally
"Oh, my god…" Stefan breathed as he looked to Alaric, then to Elijah.
"I don't believe this—I can't…" Mikael said in a quiet and stunned voice, his eyes reflecting the dancing flame in the hearth as he lowered himself into a wooden chair.
"I'm so sorry…" Esther whispered, tears forming in her dark eyes as she wrings her hands in anguish, "It was just the one time. I never thought that anything would come of it."
Mikael balls his fists in anger, unable to meet his wife's gaze, "Are the others?"
"No!" Esther cried in her defense, then takes a breath and steadies herself, "No, only Niklaus."
There are a few moments of silence as Mikael contemplates what to say next, trying not to let his anger get the best of him, but failing miserably.
Finally, he takes a deep breath and looks up to his wife.
"He was in the cave with us when he turned, Esther. You know what a werewolf bite can do to a vampire. He could have killed us—"
"I know." Esther said, looking away ashamed, a tear stream coming down her left cheek.
"Elijah and Rebekah and Finn and Kol—they could have died! And all of this—becoming vampires—it would have been for nothing! Our children are not safe with him like this—"
"Mikael, this wasn't supposed to happen," Ayanna interjects from the doorway, staring straight at Mikael with piercing eyes, "I told you when you came to me about the vampire spell that the spirits would turn on you. And so they have in many ways, but Esther tried to make this right many years ago. She came to me when the boy was born, told me the truth and we cast a spell on him together to suppress his werewolf gene. But, it was becoming a vampire that was his undoing. His first human kill brought about his change during the full moon."
"So, you're saying that this is my fault?" Mikael asked, narrowing his eyes, "If I hadn't want to save our children—"
"No one blames you, Mikael," Esther said, stepping forward
She reaches out to him, but he ignores her advances and gets up out of the chair quickly and moves away from her.
"Well, I blame you." Mikael whispered angrily at her, his nostrils flaring and Esther steps back, shocked.
Ayanna moves forward quickly, ready to strike him with a spell, but Esther looks directly at her and shakes her head and Ayanna moves aside from the door as Mikael storms out.
There is a moment of silence before Ayanna speaks, looking directly at Esther, who is standing by the hearth.
"Esther, Mikael is just upset. He will come around—"
"No Ayanna, Not this time. I have failed him…in the most horrible way," Esther responded in a trembling voice, looking down into the flames.
Ayanna straightens and walks to her friend's side.
"With nature's help, we could make it right, again. Niklaus is a plague on your family and on the village, Esther, he must be stopped—"
"I know," she answered blinking back more tears as they start to form
"He cannot be allowed to make more of his kind. Nature would not stand for such an imbalance. Turning your family into vampires was one thing, but this—this breaks all the laws of nature and magic."
Esther brings her eyes from the fire and looks to Ayanna.
"Tell me what I must do."
Ayanna nods, then her eyes shift to the moonstone braced in a leather necklace around Esther's neck.
"I should tell, Jeremy," Alaric said in a soft voice, the revelation of Jenna's demise clearly heavy on his heart and mind, "otherwise, it could be more of a shock when the time comes."
Elijah placed a hand on his shoulder.
This seemed to stun everyone except the original.
"Would you like us to come with you?" he asked in a solemn voice, studying Alaric's face
"No, I should do it alone or I will lose my nerve." Alaric said, taking in a deep breath before heading toward the front porch of the mansion.
Soon, Stefan and Elijah watched him disappear through the threshold.
"Well, this changes everything," Stefan said, starting to pace, his head down and his hands on his hips, in front of Elijah, "I mean, I knew Damon would be just stupid enough to think that he could make up for his actions by stopping the ritual, and for a second, I believed that he would do it and we would make it in the clear, but I…"
He stops and shakes his head, unable to finish his sentence.
Elijah does it for him as he straightens his jacket and looks up to the sky to judge the moon's apex, "You should have known not to put so much faith in your brother?"
Stefan looked up and met Elijah's eyes, just the original's tore away from the sky.
"That and I should not have underestimated Klaus' tenacity," he said
Elijah smirked, "Don't blame yourself. I have made both mistakes several times. I've told you before, Stefan, Klaus has been waiting a very long time to break this curse and you have to expect that he will always have a back-up plan. He's my little brother after all and I always have a back-up plan."
Stefan let out a breath and began pacing again in silence.
Elijah blinked, then rolled his shoulders, "So what is your plan, Stefan?"
Stefan stopped, turning back to Elijah, "What do you mean?"
"Well, Damon's plan to stop or even stall the ritual has failed. So what do you plan to do about it?"
Stefan shakes his head and looks down to his feet.
"What makes you think that I would—"
"Because you and Damon are more alike than you are willing to acknowledge, just like my brother and myself are alike, and you would do anything to keep Elena from dying or those she loves from dying… so what's the plan?"
Stefan's face is blank for a moment, then Elijah sees a spark behind is eyes.
"Well, I have something, but no one's going to like it," he said
"What won't anyone like?" Bonnie asked from behind them
Elijah and Stefan turn to see Bonnie walking across the front lawn, pulling her sweater closer around her shoulders.
"We were careless, Bonnie," Stefan said, lowering his head a little, "We didn't think about collateral damage when we thought of stalling Klaus' plans for the ritual—"
"I don't understand," Bonnie said, stepping closer, narrowing her eyes, "What's happened?"
Elijah and Stefan share a look, then Stefan steps toward her.
"Klaus has Jenna and he's planning to use her in the ritual…as the vampire."
"Why would he take Jenna?" Bonnie asked, stunned by the revelation
"A punishment for meddling," Elijah replied coolly
"Klaus was going to use Tyler and Caroline, but Damon rescued them."
"Then we need to go—now, before Jenna's been sacrificed. I can kill Klaus myself."
Elijah wanted to interject, but Stefan beat him to the chase.
"Bonnie," he said, "If you use that much power you'll be dead. We've already been though this. It's not an option."
"Neither is letting Jenna die." Bonnie shot back
"Stefan would agree with you," Elijah said and Stefan knew immediately that that was his cue to reveal his plan to them both.
"We're going to offer another vampire," he said, stepping closer to Bonnie, "one that we think Klaus will want more. Me."
There is a long pause as Bonnie considers this, studying Stefan's face.
"Fine," she said with a resigned voice, seeming to know that there wouldn't be anything she could do to stop him, "I'll go ahead and do the locator spell." She turns to Elijah, "But, I'll need your help."
Ten minutes later, Elijah walked from the house, where he had left Bonnie in the basement and crossed the mansion's front yard to Stefan. He flexed right hand and watched the long cut on the palm heal as he walked. She had needed his blood to locate Klaus.
"Bonnie did the locator spell. They are at Stephens Quarry," he said
Stefan nods, "I'll head over there first and then you'll follow with Bonnie when it's time."
"Just as the moon hits its final phase," Elijah reminds him, making sure he understands the time line, "she's to stay hidden until then. He cannot know she's alive."
Stefan nods again and moves past him, heading toward the woods. But, he doesn't get far before Elijah stops him with his words.
"You're very honorable," he said in a low voice and they both know it's the highest compliment the original could possibly give.
Stefan turns back and walks toward Elijah.
"Are you?" he asked, "'cause this whole plan is contingent on your honor, Elijah."
"I won't fail you." Elijah said with solemn conviction
Stefan takes a breath, "Klaus is your brother. I know I've wanted to kill my brother a thousand times and have never been able to."
Elijah's eyes clouded with memories, "Klaus was not my only brother. I had siblings…parents…I had a family. Over the centuries, Klaus hunted them down one by one and he took them from me. He scattered them across the seas where their bodies could not be found."
"You want revenge." Stefan said with sudden realization as to Elijah's true motives
"Sometimes there is honor in revenge. I won't fail you."
"Please end this," he said as he moves past Elijah toward the woods in the direction of Stephens Quarry.
Time seemed to move incredibly slow as Elijah paced around the inside of the mansion alone. Alaric was off in another room—he seemed to need to be alone and that was just fine with the original since he was never much of a conversationalist or one to be a comfort to someone in trouble.
It was then, for the first time since earlier in the evening when he had been alone in his apartment that he thought of Elena and his heart wretched thinking of how scared and angry and alone she must feel at that moment. It made what she went through the previous evening seem trivial.
He and his siblings had been unexpectedly killed by their father, a sword driven through their hearts, when they were turned into vampires. It had been quick and they hadn't anticipated it. He couldn't imagine what it would be like to wait in anguish for a life you never wanted and watch almost everyone you love die in the process.
And suddenly, it took all of his strength and will-power to keep himself where he was. All he wanted to do was run to her, to free her, to save those she loved and kill Klaus with his bare hands.
That was what his heart told him to do.
But, his head said that he should be patient. That he should wait. That it was for the greater good that Elena should sacrifice herself and become a vampire or, if fate wills it, not die and come back to life—if Bonnie and John Gilbert were right in their research. He would be able to kill Klaus soon enough and avenge his family. He just had to be patient and keep himself from doing anything rash.
Elijah leaned back on the door frame of the front parlor, willing himself to try to shake the thoughts of Elena from his mind when Alaric suddenly appeared.
"Are you alright?" he asked, studying Elijah, "You look paler than normal for a vampire."
"Just impatient." Elijah replied, trying to deflect Alaric
"Elijah you are the most patient man I know—saintly patient. What's really up?"
"When you've waited over a thousand years for revenge as I have, you tend get impatient Mr. Saltzman—"
"No, this isn't impatience, this is anger…and concern," he said as Elijah shoots him a hard look, "You're worried about Elena aren't you?"
"Elena can take care of herself." Elijah said in a voice even unconvincing to himself as he folds his arms across his chest.
"Uh huh…" Alaric mused, clearly taken aback by Elijah's sentiments, then looks around.
It seems time to change the subject.
"How are you holding up?" Elijah asked
"I can't stand the wait any longer," Alaric said, rubbing his hands together, "where are Bonnie and Damon?"
"They are having a little pow-wow in the basement. It seems Bonnie and John Gilbert have found something mystical—a spell that will keep Elena from turning into a vampire. Bonnie is attaching John's life-force to Elena with the hope that when she dies, the power of John's life-force will bring her back to life."
"That's great news if it's true." Alaric said, a little relief in his voice
"What about John?" Alaric asked
Elijah shook his head.
Alaric let out a trembled breath, "I see."
Suddenly, Damon and Bonnie appear in the foyer. Damon looks to Elijah and Elijah immediately straightens himself off of the door frame.
"It's time," he said as he started down the main hall after them
"The weapons are in the car," he hears Alaric say behind him
"Bonnie is the only weapon we need," Elijah said as he passed through the door frame.
Alaric is not so fortunate.
Elijah turns back and sees that he's hit a force field that's blocking him from leaving the mansion.
"Bonnie!" Alaric yells, knowing immediately who the culprit of the spell is, "what is this?"
"We can't put anyone else at risk." Bonnie said
"I can't stay here when Jenna's out there!" Alaric pleads
"I'm sorry," she said
"Damon?" Alaric looks to the older Salvatore brother
"Sorry, Buddy. She's right."
That's all the support Damon gives.
"No!" Alaric cried behind the barrier, trying to pass through in vein, "You can't do this! Bonnie! Bonnie!"
Bonnie continues to walk toward the car, but Damon looks over to Elijah and is surprised to see the original's face contorted with pain and sorrow as he watches Alaric behind the barrier. Then, after a few moments, without a word, he turns and walks towards the tree line.
"Niklaus. Niklaus, it's me. Wake up." Elijah said in a quiet voice as he bent over his naked brother, lying in the woods near the falls.
He had been tracking Niklaus for a day and a night, ever since the full moon when he had turned in the cave where the family normally took shelter once a month when their neighbors went through the same transition.
Of course, when Niklaus turned, there was naturally a fight. Kol was almost bitten, but Elijah was able to pull him out of harm's way and protect him and the rest of the family, while Mikael took on Niklaus and stabbed, but not mortally wounded him. After that, Niklaus took off from the cave and did not come home the next morning. His father and mother fought and Mikael took off. When neither Niklaus nor his father returned, Elijah took it upon himself to go search for his brother. It didn't seem like Mikael was looking for him.
Elijah quickly looked over Niklaus for any open wounds, but if he had acquired any, they seemed to have healed quickly. He then pulled an extra tunic and leather trousers out of the satchel over his shoulder and tossed them on the ground next to his brother as the latter started to come to.
Niklaus blinked into the sunlight, "Elijah?"
"It's me, brother. I'm here to take you home." Elijah said, putting a reassuring hand on Niklaus' shoulder.
"What happened?" Niklaus asked groggily as he eyed the clothes on the ground, then his own naked form.
Elijah took in a measured breath, "We don't have to talk about it right now. You're safe. That's all that matters."
He stood and laid his satchel down on the ground near a cypress tree, then walked to the bank of the ravine to get a drink of water while his brother changed.
He bent down near the water's edge and smiled as he ran the fingers of his right hand through the crystal clear water in measure strokes.
It wasn't that long ago that he was teaching them to hunt deer near this ravine, to resist the urge to kill humans if possible. It had been hard enough for Niklaus as a vampire. Now it seems, he was also a wolf, though Elijah could not wrap his mind around how. That would make it even harder for him to resist human blood.
Elijah sighed, then cupped his hand and dipped it under the water, bringing the small amount of water captured in his palm up to his mouth.
After a couple of drinks, he shook his hand dry and stood, but when he looked over his shoulder, Niklaus was gone.
Elijah walked swiftly up the embankment.
"Niklaus?" He called, but there was no answer.
Then he heard a branch snap behind him.
He immediately brought his hand to his sword in its halter on his hip, but soon steadied it when he saw a familiar face standing several yards away.
"Father…" Elijah said under his breath, the confusion beginning to spread over his face.
If his father was here, then where was Niklaus?
"Elijah!" he heard his brother cry from up on the hill. He was struggling against the grip of two men that Elijah soon recognized as his younger brothers, Kol and Finn. They were hauling him, bound, through the trees back toward the village as he continued to scream.
"What are you doing?" Elijah turned angrily back to Mikael, "Let him go! What's happening to him is not his fault! You can't do this!"
Mikael is now only feet away and continues to walk toward Elijah at a measured pace.
Elijah steps back. There is something in Mikael's eyes that alarms him.
"Father, please let him go!" he said
But his words are lost as Mikael closes in and quickly draws his own sword, aiming the hilt directly for his son's face.
"I'm sorry about this, Elijah," Mikael said in a lamenting voice
Then everything went dark.
Elijah couldn't ignore the smell of fresh blood as he reached the cliff to the east above Stephen's Quarry—it stopped him dead in his tracks. He had already watched the sacrifice once—that had been enough for his ten lifetimes and there was no way he was going to watch it again. If he kept his eyes to the sky, he reasoned to himself, he wouldn't have to watch. He would know when to strike by the moon's positon.
He had just closed his eyes and was trying to block out his hearing when a voice sounded behind him.
"You alright?" Damon asked as he approached the original's side
Elijah opened his eyes.
"I'm fine," he said, trying to keep an even tone
"Good," Damon said, and Elijah can't help noticing that the younger vampire is also trying to avoid looking down at the events that are happening at the quarry, "Because if you are having second thoughts about this, we are in serious trouble."
"I'm not having second thoughts," Elijah replied, "it just—have you ever tried to kill your brother?"
"Several times," Damon smirked, "and almost succeeded twice."
"I see. I've never tried to kill my brother," Elijah said, looking down at his daylight ring as he twirls it on his middle finger, "though he's daggered me several times over the centuries."
"Why have you never fought back?" Damon asked, confused, "it sounds like the jerk deserves what's coming to him and by your own hand."
"That's just it, Damon," Elijah said, looking up, "It's never been my place to kill Niklaus. You see, I made a promise many centuries before not to harm him—"
"Well, who the hell did you make that promise to?" Damon asked
Elijah's face hardened as he stepped forward.
"Someone you don't ever want to meet, Mr. Salvatore, and let's just leave it at that."
Damon studied Elijah's face for a moment then nodded.
Elijah stepped back and looked up to the sky.
"Then why are you suddenly agreeing to kill him now?" Damon asked
"Because I gave my word to Elena," he said in a soft tone, swallowing back the lump that suddenly appeared in her throat when he said her name, "and because some things have recently come to light about my brother that makes it impossible for me not to act."
"That's none of your concern," Elijah replied coolly, still keeping his eyes on the sky
"I saw your face earlier, when we had to leave Ric behind at the mansion. You know that we did it for his own protection, right? We don't have the time or the resources to be dragging civilians into this fight, Elijah."
"I understand that," Elijah said, bringing his eyes back to Damon, the emotion suddenly rising in his voice, "But, I also understand his anger and his fear. He is forced to stand by as someone he loves is in danger and needs his help and he is helpless….I can think of nothing worse."
Damon is silent for a moment as he considers this and Elijah's eyes move back to the sky.
"The moon is approaching its final apex," he said finally, turning back to Damon, "We should move into position."
Elijah started to wake at dusk, just as the last rays of sunshine fell through the tops of the trees. There was a terrible pain as he lifted his head and he could smell his own blood on his clothes. His father must have knocked him out with his sword.
He opened his eyes and groggily took in his surroundings, recognizing them immediately. He was at the tree-line on the outskirts of the village. He tried to move, but found himself bound upright to the trunk of a large cypress tree. He pulled against the ropes around his arms and legs for a few moments before he finally gave up.
"Be still. You're weak," a familiar voice sounded near him, "They rubbed vervain in your wound to keep you from breaking your bonds."
Elijah turned his head painfully to his left and that is when he saw her.
"Liliya?" he asked in a low tone of surprise
Liliya smiled sweetly at him, a tear falling down the right side of her cheek.
"Are you alright?" she asked
"What are you doing here?" he asked, suddenly realizing that she was also tied to a tree.
"Kol grabbed me two days ago when I was doing washing down at the falls. They brought me here and I've been tied up ever since. Elijah, what is happening?"
Elijah took a deep breath, trying to stay awake, but kept feeling as though he wanted to fall asleep. It was the vervain.
"I—I don't know, but I think that it has something to do with Niklaus."
"You mean because he turned into a wolf that night in the cave?" Liliya asked
"Yes." Elijah nodded weakly
"That would make sense. They have him as well. They've been keeping him in the stable for the last two days."
Elijah's eyes widened, "Two days? Has it been that long?"
"Well, at least my father hasn't killed him."
"I think they are starving him, Elijah" Liliya whispered
"What? Why? That will only make things worse. Especially since there is another full moon tonight"
"I don't know."
"And what would they want with you?" Elijah asked, his eyes narrowing
It was then that they heard footsteps approaching. Soon, Mikael's face appeared, barely visible in the fast approaching darkness.
Elijah pulled weakly at his bonds trying to free himself.
"Relax my son." Mikael said, placing a hand on Elijah's chest to calm him, "You'll tire yourself out. You have not fed in days and you still have vervain in your system."
"Keep me if you want—if you must punish me—but let Liliya go."
Mikael casts a glance over to Liliya, then lowers his eyes.
"I'm sorry, Elijah, but I can't do that. You see, were are going to ask the spirits to make things right with regards to your brother and his condition and, as it turns out, we need her. Her blood is the key. She is the only one in the village with no family still living and no descendents. Her blood will bind your brother's curse."
Liliya's dark brown eyes widened in fear and she took a deep breath.
Mikael turned and looked over his shoulder toward the clearing and it was then that Elijah saw a large fire raging several yards away in the center of the meadow. His mother, Ayanna and several witches, dressed in dark robes circled it. One of the women looked up to the sky just as the full moon made its appearance.
Then, Elijah saw his brother Kol step forward with what looked like a man in his grasp. The man writhed in pain, a hood covering his head completely as he was thrown on the ground in front of the fire.
One of the witches removed his hood and revealed his face.
Elijah recognized him.
It was Hammer Lochvud, he was a village werewolf.
"What is happening to him?" Elijah asked, looking to his father
"A spell has been put on him to slow down his transformation so that he doesn't turn before the sacrifice."
"Sacrifice?" Elijah asked, his eyes immediately turning to Liliya
Hammer continued to scream and writhe in front of the fire, his body contorting in several un-natural positions before the witch Ayanna stepped forward and pulled a silver dagger from her cloak, holding it high above the flames, before kneeling in front of the werewolf.
"Sjelen av ulv" she said as she stabbed the werewolf through the chest, carving out his heart, then slitting his throat.
Liliya gasped and Hammer Lochvud fell limp and silent.
The soul of a werewolf? Elijah tried to wrap his mind around what was happening.
Ayanna stood, the heart in hand and walked over to the fire. After a moment of contemplation, she tossed the heart into the flames.
Ayanna then nodded to the outskirts of the circle, to someone Elijah couldn't see.
After a moment, his brother Finn came forward with a young girl. By her build, she did not even look of teen years.
Elijah watched as Finn threw the girl roughly to the ground, the hood over her head falling off in the process.
When her head was free from darkness, she looked around with frightened eyes, then screamed as her eyes fell on the body of Hammer Lochvud.
The witches wasted no time. Another one of them stepped forward, an older woman Elijah recognized as Hilga, one of the village elders.
She came to the young girl's side and smiled, stroking her face lovingly as the girl cried and carried on.
Then Elijah saw Hilga pull a silver dagger from her own robes.
"No…" Elijah whispered, bracing himself as he watched the woman bring the blade to her own wrist and slit it, just below the right palm. She then offered it to the girl.
The girl's eyes immediately turned toward the bleeding wrist, dark lines quickly forming under her eyes, indicating her hunger.
But before the girl could feed, Hilga stabbed her with the blade. The girl screamed and fell lifeless as Hilga ripped out her heart with the end of the knife, holding it toward the full moon in the sky.
"Hjertet av en vampyr," she said as she too threw the heart into the fire, making the flames rise higher.
The heart of a vampire?
Then out of the corner of his eye, Elijah saw Mikael move toward Liliya and immediately Elijah knew her fate.
Liliya did too. But, she did not struggle and she did not look defeated. She looked resigned.
"No. Don't take her!" he cried, struggling, trying to ignore his fatigue
Liliya whimpered as Mikael untied the bonds behind her back and took her firmly in his grasp.
But, as he turned toward the ritual circle, his face crumbled slightly and he turned back to his son.
He sighed and turned Liliya toward Elijah, releasing her in his direction.
Liliya immediately ran to him, ignoring all instincts to escape. She knew that Mikael and the others were faster. She could not outrun a vampire, so there was no use in running in any other direction.
Elijah let out a contented breath her arms wrapped around her neck and she hugged herself to him, burying her face in his collar bone. The floral smell of her dark brown, braided hair, lofted around him and gave him comfort in that moment.
"It' alright, my love," she whispered, "it will be over soon."
"I can't lose you…" Elijah said, his voice trembling as he brought his forehead to rest on hers.
Liliya pulled back to face him, her olive skinned hand stroking the side of his face as tears began to fall down her cheeks.
"You won't," she said softly, then leaned it to him and whispered in his ear, "I love you, Elijah. I will always be with you…"
"In here," she said, touching the side of his head softly.
She then brought herself back to face him, her hand falling onto his chest over his heart.
"And in here," she smiled weakly
"No…" Elijah sobbed as she brought her lips to his, the tear streams on their cheeks touching as they kissed passionately.
Finally, after a few moments, she pulled away and let out a breath, her lip trembling and her face flushed with anquish.
"Jeg vil elske deg for alltid ..." she whispered as Mikael grabbed the back of her right arm and pulled her back.
"Liliya!" Elijah cried as his father wielded her toward the clearing and the roaring fire.
Elijah struggled at his bonds with new found strength, the ropes wining at his efforts.
"Mother, please! Don't do this!" Elijah screamed, leaning forward, still trying to free himself.
But, his pleas went ignored as Esther, unable to keep herself emotionally uninvolved, turned and fled back toward the village.
Ayanna came forward in her place, taking Liliya from Mikael and holding her firmly in her grasp.
Liliya struggled against Ayanna's iron grip for a few moments, but her struggling stopped immediately as a figure came staggering toward them from the other side of the fire.
Ayanna pulled another silver dagger from her robes and brought it quickly to the right side of Liliya's neck. Liliya winced as Ayanna drew a small cut along the side of her jugular, causing blood to trickle down her neck and pool in her collar bone.
"Den blodslinje som har avsluttet, skal være blod friheten din!" Ayanna cried into the night and Elijah saw Liliya's eyes widen and suddenly, her fate was clear to her as Ayanna pushed her, still in her grasp, toward the approaching figure—it was Niklaus.
He must have been released from wherever they were keeping him.
Elijah continued to struggle as he watched his younger brother approach Liliya almost in a feral manner.
His eyes were changing color and his skin was pale. It was clear that he was weak and hungry, but also in transition.
He stopped, falling on his knees to the ground for a moment, holding his chest in pain as Elijah put all of his weight forward on his bonds.
After a moment, his feet were free.
"Kol! Finn! Hold him!" he heard Mikael cry and soon he saw his brothers approaching him fast
His eyes quickly turned to Niklaus, who was now back on his feet and moving toward Liliya.
He didn't have much time. He braced his feet on the ground and struggled against the ropes around his chest.
It wasn't long before he could hear the trunk of cypress begin to crack beneath his weight.
"Finn, hurry! He's taking down the tree!" Kol cried, grabbing one shoulder, pushing Elijah back, trying to stabilize the tree, only to be joined by Finn moments later.
Then it happened.
"No!" Elijah screamed, still trying to push against his brothers' hold with all his might as Niklaus grabs Liliya and takes her in his grasp, his teeth bearing into her neck.
She doesn't thrash or resist as her blood spills on the ground.
Standing on that ridge, watching his brother, Elijah felt nothing but anger for Niklaus.
He had watched with clenched fists as he stabbed Stefan, then killed Jenna. The pain on Elena's face was evident, but she did not give in. Damon just as impatient and left Elijah several minutes before to join Bonnie on the north ridge.
Elena stared down Klaus defiantly on her knees as he approached her in her circle.
"It's time," he said, extending a gentlemanly hand out toward her.
Elijah feels a cinch of pride and satisfaction when he sees her take a stiff breath and ignoring Niklaus' hand, stand up on her own accord and walk past him as Stefan writhed on the ground.
Elena moved past the witch, Greta, to the top of the flat rock on the other side of the cauldron.
Elena stared straight ahead, tying avoid eye contact with Klaus, but he grabbed her chin, turning her face toward him.
"Thank You, Elena," he said in as sincere a voice
"Go to hell…" Elena said, staring at him hard with tear-filled eyes
Klaus grips Elena tight and brings his mouth to her neck in one fluid motion.
Elijah suddenly feels his blood boil and his nostrils flare.
"No…" he whispers and turns his head, closing his eyes to avoid the scene before him.
After a few moments, he opens his eyes and wills himself to turn back.
Niklaus was changing, the curse had been broken.
As he walked under the moonlight, Elijah watched as his brother's body started to contort, his eyes changing.
Elijah turns to the north ridge and sees Damon and Bonnie take off, racing down the hill toward the ritual.
Elijah straightens his jacket and watches as Bonnie unleashes her wrath, the force of it tossing Niklaus through the air and onto a flint rock, where he contorts in pain as Damon goes immediately to Elena.
Good. Now that Elena was safe, Elijah could concentrate on his part.
As the sun set, Mikael walked stealthily out from the tree line and set two freshly killed deer outside the largest underground cave near the falls. Then, looking around quickly entered the mouth of the cave and followed the stone marked path to the bowels below. When he made the turn through the last tunnel he saw him. He was sitting on the floor of the cave with his back against one side of the rock face. Mikael was shocked by his appearance. He knew that he was in despair and would not have eaten, but after only two days, he looked horribly pale and clearly was losing strength fast.
"What do you want?" Elijah asked in a weak voice, not even looking in Mikael's direction
"I came because—" Michael started, but Elijah interrupts, his voice angry as he shook his head.
"I don't want to hear anything you have to say. Now, please leave. I prefer to die alone"
This causes Mikael to step forward.
"I'm sorry about Liliya, Elijah, I truly am—"
Elijah finally turned to Mikael, "What part of my previous statement was unclear to you, Father?"
"Please, Elijah, I need your help. It's concerning your brother."
"What about him? He's cured now," he said in a bitter voice, his eyes clouded with anger, "he did what he needed, he killed the woman I loved and drained her dry and now he lives with only one curse instead of two."
Mikael lowers his head, "It's not that simple, Elijah—"
"No, it is that simple, Father!" Elijah cries, albeit in a weak tone, "You've taken everything from me! Everything I cared about! What could you possibly need from me now?"
Mikael's voice turned hard as he looked up sharply at his second born son.
"First of all, I need you be the son I raised, the warrior I trained, the moral guide, the honorable man, and the brother who would give his own life for his siblings to protect them from all possible harm! That is what I need! I need you, Elijah! Not this shell of a vampire! I need you!"
Elijah took a deep breath and closed his eyes. After a few moments, he opened his eyes again.
"Very well…I'm listening…" he said in a low voice as he struggled to pull himself to his feet, leaning on the wall behind him for support.
Mikael immediately comes to his aide, taking his arm and attempting to help him up. Elijah lets him do so, but when he was on his feet, he quickly pulled his arm out of his father's grasp.
Mikael nodded solemnly and stepped away.
But suddenly, Elijah saw his face soften as he looked past his son and soon he was following his father's gaze to the wall behind him. Elijah hadn't realized it before, but he had been sitting against the cave wall where their family had carved their names over the years they spent in the caves hiding from their lycanthrop neighbors during the full moon cycle.
A weak smile crossed Mikael's face as he stepped forward past Elijah and studied the names of his children one by one as he touched them. First Elijah, then Rebekah, then a sun and moon carving done by Henrik when he was a small boy before he could write his own name.
When he finally came to Niklaus' name, his face crumbled a bit as he placed a hand over the carving.
"Father?" Elijah asked as he moved to the other side of the tunnel and fell against the opposite cave wall for support.
His father was a strong man from the line of Odin himself, and though he could be kind and just, Elijah had never in all his years, seen his father cry.
But, Mikael held back his emotions well. There was only a hint of a tremble in his voice when he answered his son.
"I failed him Elijah," Mikael said, "His whole life I acted as though he was nothing but a disappointment to me. I pushed him harder than anyone and punished him more severely. I thought a father had a duty to do so when he saw his own son going down such a reckless path, but it turns out that my actions have returned to haunt me."
Elijah watched as Mikael's hand over Niklaus' name balled into a fist and he angrily pounded it against the rock face.
"I was neither his mentor nor his savior nor, as it turns out, his real father," Mikael said, turning back to Elijah, "But, what angers me more than anything is that he didn't take his hate and his anger out on me—he took it out on others. He made them pay for my sins and my failures."
"Niklaus is not your son?" Elijah asked, taken aback by this revelation
"Many years ago, it seems your mother had an affair with a werewolf in the village—"
"Who is not important," Mikael said, his voice rising slowly in defensive anger
Elijah let out a measure breath, "That's where you went when you didn't go searching for Niklaus after he turned. You went looking for him, for Niklaus' real father?"
Mikael's face flushed with anger, "Yes. I'm not proud of it, Elijah, but I did go looking him and I found him."
"You killed him, didn't you?" Elijah asked, his eyes widening.
He and his siblings had always been terrified of their father and for good reason. His temper was legendary, so was his pride. As a vampire, both were magnified times a hundred.
Mikael lowered his head, seemingly in shame.
"Yes," he whispered, "he is dead. And I…"
He trailed off, shaking his head, as if trying to will the memories to leave his mind.
Elijah stepped forward in sudden realization.
"You killed more than just him."
"Yes." Mikael said, looking up to meet his son's eyes
Mikael adverted his gaze and Elijah immediately knew that it was more than just a few.
"I see." Elijah said
"That's not all, son." Mikael said, his voice changing and Elijah could suddenly see him trying to keep his composure, "when I said that my sins had returned to haunt me, I meant it in the most cruel way. Your mother is dead."
Elijah suddenly lost all his strength and slid down the wall, falling to his knees. His body was numb and his mind raced. He felt the tears start to come, but for his father's sake, he did his best to hold them back.
"How?" he managed to ask in a soft whisper
There was a pause as Mikael seemed to consider what he was about to say, then he said it.
"It was Niklaus," Mikael said as he watched Elijah's face fall, "It seems he's discovered the truth about what he is and what was done to him. I don't know if he was taking his revenge out on her or on me, but I saw him emerge from the house with the blood on his hands. He—he ripped out her heart."
"No…" Elijah whispered
Mikael swallowed, trying to pull himself together.
"That's why I'm here, Elijah. There is a second thing you must do for me," he said, kneeling down in front of his son.
Mikael's face solemned, "I need you to make sure her death was not in vein, that Liliya's was not in vein, I need you to go home."
Elijah's brown knitted, "What? What do you mean go home? How can I possibly go home after—"
"Your siblings need you, they need your protection—especially from your brother. And more than anything he will need protection from himself. He's a vampire, born of a werewolf bloodline, he is angry and confused, Elijah and he can't control it. He's also alone now, the only one of his kind. He will do everything in his power to see that it doesn't stay that way." Mikael puts his hand on his son's shoulder, "Elijah, I know what Liliya's death has done to you and I am sorry for it. We thought it was the best way. I know you're angry with me and you have every right. And I know you want nothing more than to stay here and waste away and I know that it is selfish of me to ask this of you—"
Elijah suddenly put his hand over his father's on his shoulder.
"I'll do it," he said in a weak voice
Mikael let out a sigh of relief and smiled down at his son
"But I have one question before I do," he said
Mikael nods, "What is it?"
"Are you going to kill Niklaus?"
Mikael eyed his son, "Do you wish me to?"
Elijah looked his father straight in the face, "No."
Mikael nods again, "I knew you would say that. That is why you are the best of all of us, Elijah, and that's why I need you to do this for me. One day, Niklaus will die by my hand as retribution for the life he has taken and when that happens, no matter what happens, I need you to be there for—for your siblings."
"Why not now? Why wait?" Elijah asked
"Because he's told your sister that I killed your mother" Mikael said, lowering his eyes, "Kol and Finn left when the villagers fled. I'm not sure if he told them, too."
"Why would he do that?"
"I'm not sure. To turn them against me? Or to make them hate me so that they will never know the truth? Either way, it doesn't matter. What's done is done. But, if I am to make this all right one day, I must leave, Elijah, and it may be a long time before I can return. Until then, I want you to promise me that you will keep your brothers and sister safe."
"I promise." Elijah nods weakly
"And you will do everything in your power to contain Niklaus?"
"And you will not harm Niklaus? You will let me strike him when the time comes?"
"You want revenge?" Elijah asked suddenly
"No. It would not be honorable."
Mikael gripped his son's shoulder tighter, looking him square in the eye.
"Sometimes, Elijah, there is honor in revenge."
A moment passes before Elijah nods, "I promise I will not harm Niklaus."
"Good," Mikael said finally, pulling his son up with him to his feet. Elijah is unsteady and quickly falls against his father, "Now, you need to feed. I left you some deer outside the cave mouth. They are not much, but they should give you enough of your strength back to go hunting."
Elijah pulls away from his father and nods, attempting to stand unsteadily on his own.
Mikael studied his son for a moment, then stepped back, "I need to leave before nightfall. Please don't ever try to look for me, it will give you away."
"One more thing," he said, reaching inside the front of his tunic, "I want you to have this."
Elijah watched as his father pulled an elongated and smooth translucent rock from his chest and presented it to his son—it was the moonstone.
Elijah tentatively took it into his hand, studying it.
"And this…" Mikael said softly, pulling a leather necklace out of his side pouch.
Elijah's face crumbled as he took it into his hand. It was Liliya's—a wooden heart charm on a leather rope. He had carved it for her when they were children. She had worn it nearly half of her life.
"It fell off during the ritual. Finn and I—we made sure she got a proper burial," Mikael said
"Thank you." Elijah whispered, gripping the necklace tighter in his fist.
Mikael turned to leave, but Elijah quickly grabbed his father's arm with his free hand.
Mikael looked back to his son, seemingly stunned by the action, but Elijah pulls him forward with all the strength he can muster until their right forearms are locked.
He searched his father's face for a moment then spoke.
"If we do not meet again in this life and an unfortunate fate befalls you, may you go to those who came before us—to your ancestors and mine—may they call you to the halls of Valhalla. And one day, may we be so fortunate as to meet you there again."
Mikael smiled and gripped his son's arm tight.
"Styrke og ære" he said
"Mot og tapperhet" Elijah replied
With that, Mikael released his grip
"Goodbye, my son," he said, touching Elijah's shoulder and with incredible speed, he was gone.
And Elijah was left alone with the moonstone and his brother's fate.
Bonnie had just screamed her last spell and backed away, when Elijah finally approached his brother for a bitter-sweet reunion. It had been more than twenty-five years since they had last stood face to face and Elijah could see the mixture of fear and happy recognition spill onto Niklaus' face as he lay helpless on a boulder near the sacrificial flames.
Elijah takes in a breath and with a powerful thrust, puts his fist through Niklaus' chest, taking hold of his brother's beating heart in his hand.
"In the name of our family, Niklaus—" he says, squeezing his fight tighter in his brother's chest
"I didn't bury them at sea," Niklaus blurts, weakly grabbing Elijah's wrist to steady his hand
Elijah's froze, his face falling, "What?"
A rush of emotions suddenly overwhelmed him. He wasn't sure what to think or what to feel.
"Their bodies are safe," Niklaus spat, "if you kill me, you'll never find them."
"Elijah," Stefan said, stumbling forward with Bonnie at his side, "Don't listen to him."
Elijah knew he was right. Niklaus was a self-preservationist; he always had been and always will be. But this was his family—his sister and his brothers. Elijah knew he had failed his father, that his brothers and sisters had been daggerd on his watch, one by one, and he had not protected them. Their lines and loyalties had always been divided, but that would mean nothing if he could see them once more.
"Elijah, I'll take you to them. I give you my word, brother." Niklaus said
Elijah immediately knew that this was either going to be an incredibly smart decision or an incredibly foolish one.
He thought for a moment, turning his head over to where Elena had fallen after the sacrifice. Then he suddenly remembered that Damon had taken her away and she wasn't there to guide him.
He turned back to Bonnie and Stefan.
Bonnie could see his thought process. She could see that Elijah the Original—moral and logical—was letting his heart win this time.
"Do it and I'll take you both out," she said
"You'll die." Elijah countered
"I don't care," she said, and Elijah knew she meant it.
Elijah looked at Klaus for a moment, then back to Stefan and Bonnie.
"I'm sorry," he said
Then he heard their screams as he took hold of Niklaus and jumped through the flames.
When Elijah had finished consuming the deer his father had left for him, he returned to the inside of the cave for the rest of his belongings. He wasn't sure how he felt about going home, especially after everything that had happened. How was he supposed to look at Niklaus—protect Niklaus –and not think of Liliya? And his brothers and sister? Was he really to leave them blinded as to their brother's true nature? Elijah shook his head as he packed his satchel and picked up his sword.
Suddenly, it hit him.
He couldn't tell anyone about his father's visit—about Niklaus—about anything related to their family's story, but that didn't mean it had to be forgotten.
Elijah immediately dropped his belongings on the ground and opened his satchel, pulling out his hunting knife.
He looked over to the wall where his family had carved their names. Solemnly, he reached down the front of his tunic and pulled out Liliya's necklace draped around his neck and gazed longingly at the charm. Then tucking it back inside, he stepped toward the wall and, after studying it for a moment, found a large blank area on the rock face and started carving.
It was hard passing through the meadow near the tree line on the outskirts of the village without having horrible, nightmarish flashbacks of the events days before. All he could do was walk quickly, keep his head down and focus on the promise he made to his father.
When he reached the edge of the forest, he looked down and saw the village was deserted. His father's rampage had caused most of the occupants to flee, but there were two figures standing alone on the east side of the village near his family's home.
He narrowed his eyes and soon recognized them—Rebekah and Niklaus
Elijah took a deep breath to steady himself.
Rebekah stood at the edge of a large hole in the ground that Niklaus filling in with dirt. It looked like a grave. Could it be their mother's?
It almost made Elijah sick to think that Niklaus was the one burying their mother after what Mikael said he did.
But, then, he thought of Rebekah. His responsibility was to her now. He had to forget about his anger and about his feelings toward Niklaus. He had to put them aside and go to her—to them both.
Elijah walked slowly out of the woods toward the center of the village, setting his satchel and his sword against a nearby shed.
As he approached them, he could hear Rebekah talking to her brother.
"I know you think she hated you, Niklaus, but she did not…she was just afraid" his sister said, tears streaming down her face, "I'm sorry she turned her back on you. I will never do that."
Elijah took this as a cue to step forward.
"Nor will I," he said, gazing at his siblings as they turned to him—Rebekah in relief and Niklaus in surprise.
Rebekah looked from one brother to the other.
"We stick together as one," she said, reciting what they had always told each other as children when their father became angry or was strict with them, "always and forever."
She then held her right hand out to Niklaus and he took it, then she held her other out to Elijah.
He stepped forward and took it, then looked to Niklaus.
Niklaus studied him with a mixture of anger, guilt and genuine fear. But, Elijah did not let his emotions show.
He had promised his father.
He just silently held his free hand out to his brother and Niklaus tentatively took it, completing the circle.
It had been a tiresome job, tracking Niklaus. When Elijah had rescued him from the flames of the ritual, he immediately regretted it, not just because of the pit in his stomach it gave him at having put his family first and betraying Elena and her friends, but because of the two days that followed. Once Niklaus was out of Bonnie's clutches, he turned quickly, so quickly that Elijah barely had enough time to escape from his brother's side, less he be bitten. And the worse of it seemed to be that the moon seemed to not hold its sway over Niklaus, he consistently stayed a wolf, day and night, even after the cycle came and went.
Of course, as he had for centuries, Elijah cleaned up after his brother. A dentist was killed near Woodbridge—he buried her. A truck driver was attacked near Lydow—he survived and he and his driving partner were successfully compelled and anonymously dropped at a local hospital after Elijah used every ounce of strength he had to bend up the truck enough to make it look like an accident. Finally, there were the eight Boy Scouts in the woods near the falls. That was the worse one. He held his anger inside as he carefully disposed of their bodies, then identifying them, went to their houses one by one and convinced their families that their sons had run away and that it was better for them all in the end.
It pained him now just to think about it. He did not like compelling humans, controlling their minds—it never felt right. Of course, he had used it many times over the centuries to gain information or to protect himself or his brother, but never for recreation as Niklaus did frequently.
Finally on the second morning following the ritual, Niklaus reverted back to his human form, falling exhausted in the meadow near Stephen's Quarry back in Mystic Falls and Elijah watched over him as he slept for several hours.
Then, around mid afternoon, Niklaus awoke.
Immediately, his clothes were thrown at him and soon he saw Elijah standing against a tree nearby.
"You've been busy," Elijah said in an even tone
"That was amazing. How long has it been?"
"Almost two days. The full moon came and went and you remained a wolf."
"I can change at will, then. That's good to know." Niklaus smirked as he dressed
Elijah swallowed anxiously as he thought to himself how that was not good at all.
"I remember every single kill…" Niklaus said, seemingly proud of himself
"Yes." Elijah interjected, "I've been cleaning up your little mess along the way."
"Just like old times, brother." Niklaus mused
Elijah's face hardened as he stepped forward and handed Niklaus his shoes.
"You've had your fun, now I believe we have a bargain."
Niklaus smiled, "That's right. Now what was it again? Oh, yeah, wait, I remember, you wish to be reunited with our family."
Elijah grabs Niklaus' jacket off the ground at his feet and vigorously begins to brush it off, desperately willing himself not to rip out his brother's heart right then and there.
"You gave me your word Niklaus," he said haughtily, "not that that has ever meant anything."
Niklaus turned to face him, "What kind of brother would break his bond? Even though you did try to kill me."
Elijah found this almost comical. He tried to kill his brother once—Niklaus had daggered him over ten times in the thousand years since they were turned and the reasons were often petty. Sometimes it was out of anger, sometimes out of spite, sometimes out of jealously and once even out of fun when he had had too much to drink—the list was endless.
Elijah gave the jacket a final shake, then helped Niklaus on with it, brushing the shoulders when it was fitted.
"I could have, but I didn't." he said
Niklaus eyed his brother for a moment and Elijah immediately feels the challenge in it.
"Now, no one can. Not even you," Niklaus said, stepping forward and putting a hand on his brother's shoulder, "Relax Elijah, all is forgiven."
Elijah's mind raced, all is forgiven? He really should rip out his brother's heart right then and there, just for his disrespect and insolence. But, as always his head won over his feelings and he found himself, instead, thinking of his family.
"Where are they?" he asked
"You need to lighten up," Niklaus said, deflecting, "I'll bring you to them soon enough."
And Elijah watched his brother turned his back on him and walked away.
Sadly, it wasn't the first time.
Thanks for reading everyone! And Thank You for your wonderful comments on my last story Memories Bring You Near, I really appreciated your feedback. I am currently working on the third installment of this fan-fiction. It's entitled, Lies My Brother Told Me, and it promises to have flashbacks of love and betrayal, the return of Elijah and Niklaus' brothers-along with a special guest appearance by the mysterious family member locked in the coffin, and more Elijah/Elena ship! (since this story was more Elijah-centric:) So stay tuned and feel free to leave a comment.