Title: Get Your Money's Worth
Prompt: Elena Gilbert borrows money from a loanshark Damon Salvatore, dangerous mobster and all around bad guy who sees women as objects, in order to support herself and her younger brother. When she can't pay she is taken away to work in his house. She ignores his romantic advances and works to get back to her brother and pay her debt. Can she uncover the man inside the beast?
Disclaimer: I do not own The Vampire Diaries. I just like playing with the characters. The creativity is my own.
A/N: Welcome to GYMW. This story has been pretty much screaming at me the last few weeks, so I had to write it down. To those of you following my story What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Stronger, I'm sorry about the delay on that. I WILL write it, I have the next chapter started, I'm just a little stuck on where it's going and trying to work out my writers block through what's inspiring me right now. And, since this is inspiring me, I already have a good portion of the next chapter written which will be up around Friday.
I hope you like it. Enjoy!
Elena Gilbert stretched in her small, twin-sized bed. It was plain, just simple wood planks, and secondhand, like most of the things in the cramped apartment that she and her brother called home since the accident. She sighed, rubbing her eyes before shutting off her blaring alarm clock. Another day, bound to be just the same as all the rest. She rolled out of bed and stumbled over to the window, letting herself enjoy the sun just for one moment.
Elena peered out of the tiny window, stretching on her tiptoes. She had put little adhesive flowers on the glass when they first moved in as a way to bring some life into the room, but they just seemed faded and sad now.
She watched the town start to wake up, people bustling to and fro on the sidewalk below her, getting coffee, reading the newspaper, going to school. She looked at the cars parked on the street. She could name the owner of almost every one. There was Mrs. Flower's old little VW bug. Their miniscule landlady lived a floor down and was as sweet as could be. She could see Miss Sommers' flashy red convertible. It suited her flamboyant personality well. She also saw a black van with tinted windows that she didn't recognize. It reminded her of her parents' car, dark and sleek. The sun reflected off of its polished surface, flashing in her eyes like headlights. She gasped and shook her head violently, rubbing the windowsill to remind herself where she was.
Her personal moment over, she grabbed her shower things and started her day. She went through her morning routine methodically, the same way she had since she was old enough to dress herself.
She scrubbed and shaved her body thoroughly, just like she did every day. She combed her hair with 100 strokes and dried it until it was pin-straight and controlled, just like she did every day. She dressed in worn jeans and a soft, v-neck top, just like she did every day. And she stroked the picture of her parents on her bedside table, saying good morning…just like she did every day.
She went to her calendar. It was one of those complimentary ones from Mystic Falls Trust, the bank down the road. She crossed off the day. September 2nd. She was 4 days late in her payments…again. She needed to get caught up or she'd never pay off her loan.
On her way out of the room she glanced at her small bookshelf filled with her treasures, the things she valued most, her beaten and much-loved books. They were her favorites, the few she had managed to save when they auctioned off their home and belongings. She allowed herself a small smile as she contemplated them, what they promised. They promised freedom, rebellion, life. They let her be Rosalind, Elizabeth Bennett, and Belle.
One day she promised, one day when her debts were paid and she was sure Jeremy could take care of himself, she would get out of here. She would see the world, have experiences, get in trouble…fall in love.
She sighed. Her only relationship crashed and burned not long after her parents did. She just wasn't able to keep things going with Matty, especially with everything she was suddenly responsible for. Besides, there was no spark, no passion. They had known each other since before they could walk and owed it to themselves to try, but Elena had known he wasn't what she needed. She needed fire, adventure, someone who made her feel alive and stole her breath at the same time.
She walked into the living room/kitchen/laundry room area of their tiny flat.
"Jer, 10 minute warning!" She yelled.
She was answered with a dull moan.
"Either you get up or I'll just have breakfast without you!" She sang.
A yelp and a thud came from behind his closed door. Shuffling and more thuds were quickly followed by a whirlwind of 15 year old boy stumbling into the room as he frantically tried to tame his messy hair and button his trousers at the same time.
She regarded him skeptically. "You forget what today is?"
He smirked sheepishly, a blush staining his baby-face. "Sorry 'Lena."
She rolled her eyes. "Jer, it's your first day at this new school. You know how hard we worked to get you in there. Now don't screw it up." She lectured.
They wouldn't normally be eating out for breakfast, but Jeremy deserved the treat today. Their parents had always hoped that Jeremy would attend their father's elite private school. The academic requirements were ridiculously high and, to top it off, Jer had managed to get a partial scholarship. It wasn't enough to cover the whole tuition, which was part of the reason why Elena had to work so hard and had a debt to pay off. But if she could make her parents proud and give Jeremy a better future, she would do whatever it took.
Five minutes later the siblings strode out into the balmy September air. It hadn't quite started getting cold yet, but Elena knew it would only be a matter of time. They walked quickly to their favorite diner, chatting all the while. When they were seated in their usual booth and had eaten a bit, Jeremy took a break to contemplate his sister.
She paused in her methodical assault on her chocolate chip pancake tower. "Hmm?"
"Elena, I don't have to go to this school you know. You already work so hard. I can just go to public school." He offered.
"What? No! Mom and Dad wanted this. And this will be good for you. Keep you away from Vicki." She said with a grin.
Jeremy rolled his eyes. "'Lenaaaa." He whined. "Vicki isn't so bad."
"Yeah sure, cuz that's gonna fly when you come home high after hanging out with her. Nice try."
He sighed. She was so good at deflecting attention away from herself. Elena liked to fly under the radar and was more than willing to not take care of herself if she could help someone else instead. She had graduated high school valedictorian but, at 19, wasn't going to college in order to make sure he would be okay. He wished she would do something for herself for once.
"Nice segue sis. Just…don't forget to worry about you, kay?"
Elena smiled. He really was turning into such a sweet boy. "Whatever you say Jer. You about ready? We have to get you to your fancy new school Mr. Prep." She teased.
Jeremy grinned, gulping down one last mouthful of coffee.
Soon enough they stood on the sidewalk outside of the prestigious (or pretentious) Mystic Falls Preparatory. The school's name was proclaimed in big Gothic letters cut deep into marble over the imposing archway. A giant flight of stairs commanded the sidewalk before disappearing into the cavernous recesses. You could practically smell the money.
Jeremy gulped nervously, turning to face his sister. She smiled encouragingly, grabbing him in a tight embrace.
"I'm so proud of you Jer. You did it!"
"Thanks sis'." He said, grinning.
She hugged him again, quickly, before letting go and smoothing his secondhand uniform.
"Okay, hurry up and go. I can't wait to hear all about your first day. I'll see you after work. I might be back late so there are cold cuts in the fridge. And don't forget to do your homework straight off. Save the video games for later."
Jeremy groaned playfully. "Yes Mom." He said, shoving her. "I'll be fine. Get to work."
"Okay" She said, turning to walk to work and waving goodbye enthusiastically. She started off from the school, practically buzzing in excitement. Finally, finally things were starting to come together again. After a year, maybe things could finally be good.
She had barely taken three steps when everything started to move in slow motion. It was like the whole world started crawling through molasses as soon as Elena saw that black truck screech up to the curb.
She tilted her head curiously. That looked like the same van that was outside her apartment this morning. And…wasn't it parked across the street from the diner?
She clapped her hands over her ears when the brakes squealed shrilly, clenching her teeth in remembered fear. The side door whooshed open and a flood of men in black masks poured out of it. The quickly cut her off from the school, making an imposing wall between her and safety.
One of them wrapped a meaty arm around her trim waist and began dragging her towards the truck. She yelled, kicking out, trying desperately to battle off her captor any way she could. She battered his shins with her sneakers and dug her nails viciously into the skin on his arm. She earned a yelp and a low curse for that.
"Hold still you little bitch." The man muttered.
Jeremy turned back when he heard her yell, his face morphing into a mask of horrified shock.
"Jeremy!" She screamed, desperately reaching out to him before she was yanked roughly into the car.
The masked man threw her on the floor of the truck as his cronies slid in behind her. The floor was stripped metal and there were no benches, just a big empty trunk.
The last thing she remembered as she started to hyperventilate was the black door of the car sliding closed on her brother as he stood dumbfounded on the stairs leading to his new life. Then, a smelly canvas bag slid over her head and all she knew was darkness.
Elena gasped when the bag was yanked off her head. She was standing outside of a building even more impressive than Jeremy's new prep school. She immediately knew where she was.
The Salvatore Boarding House.
Home to the Salvatore Group.
Mystic Falls' resident Evil League of Evil.
Call them what you will, the Mob, Mafia, the devil incarnate, no matter what name they took, they were bad news. Underground cockfighting, illegal betting, assassinations. Anything illegal you could think of, they did it. Their lair was one the outskirts of town, surrounded by miles of dense forest and all owned by the Salvatores.
They were the only people she could turn to after everything. She took her loan from them, knowing how dangerous it was. She had to do it. For Jeremy. And now they had come to collect. They were thugs, murderers, loansharks, bookies, all with a strange and specific honor code enforced by their leader, the notorious Damon Salvatore.
Just the thought of his name was enough to send a room into chills. He was an alcoholic, a womanizer, and easily the most dangerous of them all. They said he could turn off his emotions but he was even more dangerous in a rage. He tore people and items apart blindly until nothing was left. He had inherited his legacy from his father, Giuseppe Salvatore, but, at 24, they said Damon was the most ruthless leader the gang had ever had. He led the Salvatore Group with an iron fist and was the real power in Mystic Falls, as much as the Lockwoods pretended they were. And everyone knew he was a monster, a psychopath with no redeeming qualities.
She shivered. Of course it was them. Who else had the tenacity, or the motive, to kidnap her in broad daylight?
Her inner musings were interrupted when one of her kidnappers shoved her.
"Move." He commanded.
She glanced back to glare at him, noticing that they had all removed their masks. She took a deep breath and stepped forward. Time to enter the lair of the beast.
Elena strode into the front room of the boarding house, really more of a hall than a room, refusing to be awed by its magnificence. Everything screamed wealth and power, from the heavy russet drapes over the huge arched windows to the gold inlay on almost every surface. The floor was pristine marble patterned in an S-shape. She could only assume it was the Salvatore family crest. The whole room was pretentious and designed to cow even the toughest visitor. Do you think maybe he's compensating for something? She thought with vicious good humor.
The man himself sat at the end of the long room on a raised dais in an enormous wing-backed chair that was more a throne than anything. A trim woman with curly, dirty blonde hair stood at his right shoulder. She embodied the idea of 'hot librarian' complete with glasses and a clip board.
Elena's eyes moved from Miss Sexy Secretary to look at her jailer. She gulped a deep breath as she got her first good look at him. Goosebumps immediately erupted over her body.
He was dressed to kill in all black, his clearly expensive dress-shirt open a bit to display his powerful throat. It clung to his body, hinting at what was undoubtedly drool-worthy underneath. His hair fell rakishly across his forehead as if he had just gotten out of bed…or just finished a spirited bout of lovemaking. His full, pink lips pouted like a spoiled child, begging Elena to take a nibble. He lounged lazily like some rock star playboy, watching the room with a bored expression on his flawless face.
He was magnificent. He was beauty and danger and seduction all rolled together into one terrifying temptation. And he hadn't even spoken yet. But she refused to let her body's instinctive response to him achieve what the opulent room hadn't. She would not be cowed.
Damon Salvatore observed the girl as his men led her before him, his calculating eyes giving her a thorough once-over. She walked proudly before them, her head held high, telling him that she was strong and stubborn. Good. That made her all the more enjoyable to break.
His eyebrows rose slightly as he took her in. She was quite a looker. Her dark eyes and tanned skin made him think of sweaty nights dancing in Rio, drunk and hungry to fulfill his desires. Her mouth was ripe and moist, perfect for pleasuring him with her lips wrapped around his manhood. Her masses of hair were wild and mussed from the bag, making him imagine what they would look like splayed across his pillows as he took her hard and fast.
He was jarred from his increasingly x-rated thoughts when his men brought her to a halt at the base of the dais. He sat up, leaning his elbows on his knees and resting his chin on one fist.
"Welcome." He began, before she cut him off.
"Who the hell do you think you are? Let me go! Now!" She demanded, shaking off Stefan's restraining hand. Damon shook his head internally. His cousin was such a softy. He really wasn't suited to be in the Group, but Damon had wanted to give him one last chance on this job today.
As for the girl, Damon just wagged his finger at her.
"Ah ah ah, you're in no position to be making demands Miss Gilbert. To answer your question, I am Damon Salvatore, maybe you've heard of me?" He asked with a dark smirk.
She gulped, but her eyes remained hard. "Why did you bring me here?"
"Well Elena, as you're probably aware, you're late in your payments this month …again. We gave you a buy last month, but I really don't like to be kept waiting. So I had my men escort you for a little chat." He explained reasonably.
"Yeah, if by escort you mean kidnap." She snapped.
"Now Elena, you shouldn't sell yourself short. You are clearly not a kid." He said, looking her over in a way that made his meaning clear.
Elena crossed her arms protectively, trying to cover herself from his probing eyes but only managing to give him a fantastic view of her cleavage.
As Elena seethed, Damon continued talking. He must really like the sound of his own voice.
"Since you've been late these last couple months, we at the Salvatore Group thought we would be kind enough to help you with your payment issues. After all, we're all friends and working towards a common goal.
We, well, I have found myself in need of a…maid of sorts, someone to do simple chores around the house and keep things organized." Once again he looked her up and down. "You look like you can probably handle something like that."
"My last maid found better employment and, being the upstanding gentleman I am, I couldn't hold her back. Therefore, you'll work for me until you pay off your debt. You'll live here and do what I tell you until I think I've gotten my money's worth. It's a win-win." He explained with a beneficent smile, spreading his arms wide like he was embracing the room.
Elena was dumbstruck. Who the hell did this guy think he was? There was no way she was going to be his maid. From what she could tell of him from the past ten minutes, he'd have her in a skimpy little French outfit helping him dust off the "family jewels" before she could say 'Excusez moi!'.
"What? I can't stay here!" She sputtered. "I have to go back! My brother Jeremy, he's all alone!"
"Not really my problem." He replied flippantly.
She scoffed. He was unbelievable! "Well then, I refuse the position."
His eyebrows shot into a sharp 'v'. His welcoming demeanor immediately disappeared. It was like he had flipped a switch from sarcastic, friendly Damon to deadly dangerous Damon in an instant.
He rose from his throne, walking gracefully off the dais, and stalked dangerously towards her until they were almost chest to chest. Elena's breathing became heavy as here senses filled with only him. His eyes were darkest blue and stared daggers into hers as he spoke.
"Listen up princess, because it seems I haven't made myself clear. You will work for me. It's not a choice. Unless…" He paused, grinning lasciviously, "Unless you want to find another way to pay me back?" He suggested, leering at her as he reached out to brush his fingers along her hip.
She recoiled violently. "Don't touch me." She spat.
She looked at him with revulsion. "You're disgusting."
No sooner had the words left her mouth than she felt an agonizing crack of pain across her cheek. One of his flunkies had viciously backhanded her, sending her to her hands and knees.
"No one speaks to Mr. Salvatore like that!"
She flinched as he raised his hand to do it again when a sharp voice rang out.
"Enough." Damon said calmly, as if it was routine for people to be beaten before him…which it probably was. He turned to the woman with the clipboard. "Andie. Show her where she'll be staying and outline her duties." He looked down at his new servant coldly. "We want princess here to enjoy her stay."
P.S.: If you don't think this should be rated M, let me know and I'll drop it down to T. Thanks.