… … …

She's sent to Chicago, 1922, by a Bennett spell gone rogue.

Just to make matters worse — by the precarious hands of fate, or karma, or some other bitch of an entity, she ends up right in the company of Stefan Salvatore.

It's a small apartment; wallpaper outdated and filled ceiling to floor with some sort of small poppy flower, and big, clunky furniture that's too dark and takes up too much space for such tiny rooms fills the entire place. His back is to her, standing at the window, puffing smoke out into the open air and twiddling the cigar through his fingers.

She hears birds chirping from the windowsill, and the bright sunlight filters into the room, slashing harsh lines against Stefan's blond hair, making it look dirty and greasy and just not Stefan.

She glances around; praying, hoping, wishing that this is all a dream, but when she gives the skin on the back of her hand a little pinch, she mewls and bites back a groan because nope, definitely not a dream.

Stupid Bonnie and her inability to produce a spell without some sort of total backlash.

It was seriously a 'simple spell.' All Bonnie was supposed to do was recite this spell from Emily's grimoire that would have granted them access to a vision of Stefan — pre: bunny chasing, human loving, bravado compensating Stefan.

Damon had gotten a hold of that picture of Klaus and Stefan from Gloria's bar, and all they wanted to see was how Stefan had gotten over his influence from Klaus a la Lexi. You know, in the hopes that they could figure out some way to help him revert back to pre-Klaus Stefan, because this back and forth thing he's got going on is giving them all whiplash.

She really doesn't need to see it first hand though, thank you very much.

The heel of her boot clicks on the tiled floor, catching Stefan's attention.

He's in front of her, whipping her back into the wall with such force that her head slams into a cabinet and she hears the wood crack behind her (and feels it too, thanks a whole bunch, Stefan), and his hand is holding her still and high against the wall via her throat.

"Who are you?" he snarls, green eyes wide and feral.

Nope. Totally not Stefan.

She closes her eyes, wishes three times that she would open her eyes and find herself home, in her own warm bed, but when Stefan's hand tightens around her throat and she claws at his fingers, she pretty much gives up pretending that this is a dream.

"How'd you get in here?" He gives her a little push, and she wonders when exactly the wall is going to give and she'll go flying into his neighbor's bedroom or something.

"I-I don't know!"

His eyes roam her body and she has no idea how she's going to explain away her modern clothing, or her magical entry, and panic floods through her veins, pumping through her heart.

"St—" She cuts herself off mid word, just as Stefan's eyes harden and his lips purse into a tight frown.

"Stop," she gasps, pulling at his fingers. Nice save. "I'm not here t-to hurt you… or anything," (and man, his grip is really tight), "just please let me go?"

He loosens his grip just a smidge, but he still holds her up, feet dangling above the ground.

"Who are you?" he asks again, his eyes trailing her from her head to her toes. "You should be dead by now."

Yeah, because he's squeezing her windpipe and all.

"You… know why... I'm not." It's a totally lame reason, but what exactly would sound acceptable right now? "Let me... go!" It takes all of her power not to say his name, and he just stares at her, eyes inquisitive and like, slightly amused?

"You're a vampire." It's not so much a question, or even a statement: just a realization. And she would nod to confirm his assumption, but she can't exactly do that since he's still got her throat in a choke-hold, so she pries at his hands and demands that he place her feet back on the ground.

The smug grin he gives her is kind of confusing, but he complies and her feet touch the ground within a matter of seconds.

The moment that his hand releases her neck, she takes a step back and smooths down her skirt, hands fanning her neck and her flushed face. "Thank you."

He's silent, and when she looks up, she finds him back over at the windowsill, cigar in one hand, leaning back against the sill with a contemplative smile.

"Seriously, who are you?" His tone is more bemused now that threatened (or threatening), so she brushes her clammy palms down her thighs and takes a step towards him.

"Caroline — Sunshine." Okay, so it's totally a lame excuse for a last name, but like, this is Stefan and he is originally from Mystic Falls, so she can't exactly use her actual last name, because then she'd have to explain why none of the Forbes family is aware of her existence and then they'd become suspicious, and you know — she's a vampire. Her family doesn't exactly have the best track record when it comes to the supernatural.

And like, okay, the only reason she'd thought to say sunshine was because the sun is slanting bright rays of golden light over Stefan's face, and she went to middle school with a girl named Mary Sunshine, so it's totally plausible, right? (Never mind that she has no idea if 'Sunshine' was Mary's actual last name...)

"Sunshine," Stefan repeats, one thick brow raised cynically.

"Mm," she smiles. "Caroline Sunshine… I am." She kind of moseys towards him, hand outstretched, bright smile tacked in place.

"And you are?"

Ugh, this formality thing is too weird. She totally wants to call him by his last name, but how weird would that be? Too much to explain for it, and she's not about to get into time travel, when she doesn't even know how the hell it happened herself.

Stefan smiles, chuckling lowly. She hears it of course (FYI — vampire hearing).

"Stefan," he says, and that's it. He takes her hand, gives it a shake, and his brows are furrowed (into one long uni-brow), but a smile breaks out onto his face.

"Well, Miss Sunshine, you certainly are something else."

She has no idea what to say to that, so she kind of just smiles and turns away from him. She takes her time exploring his apartment, running her fingers over pictures of— Elena… no, Katherine. It's a black and white photo, a Polaroid, but she's there in frills and pearls, black hair cut into a short bob, and it just like — it totally sends Caroline's head spinning.

No, no, no, no, NO! This can't be happening.

"Is there something that I can help you with, Miss Sunshine?"

Silence fills the apartment, because okay — she totally had forgotten that she'd used Sunshine as her surname. When she turns around, Stefan's watching her curiously through dark lashes, that same smirk still plastered in place.

But, "Actually, yes." She takes a deep breath and holds the air in her lungs. "I… I think I'm lost, Mr. — Stefan." Mr. No-Last-Name. Ugh, this Stefan is sort of presumptuous. And much too cocky. He's different than post-re-ripper Stefan, because at least the Stefan of 2012 has the pretenses of humility.

"Lost?" he questions, like her sudden appearance in his apartment doesn't totally punctuate her claim.

But whatever.

Moody, suspicious Stefan is moody, suspicious Stefan no matter which time period he's in.

"Yes." She nods, turning to face him. "I'm not sure where I am."

He tilts his head, arms folded across his chest now, and he regards her with curiosity.

"You have no where to stay?"

She shakes her head, moving a step closer to him. "Nope." And no money, no means of transportation, a cell phone that won't do her an ounce of good, and too much knowledge than the time period permits.

She's, in a word: screwed.

… … …

It takes her nearly four and half hours to convince Stefan that she's not some crazy axe-wielding vampire killing machine (like, where would she even keep a weapon?), and she totally turns on the water works about how she's lost and she doesn't have even have anyone to go back to, and she knows his strengths and his weaknesses — and she totally uses them against him.

This Stefan is a little less forgiving than modern day Stefan (well post-Klaus Stefan is still sort of a dick, but bunny hunting, Elena loving Stefan was totally nice and nurturing), and it takes her a little more tears and a little more touching before he finally gives in. He tries to keep his distance from her, watching her with weary eyes, but when she's on the cusp of a breakdown (that's only half fake: she is stuck in the 1920's, and she has no idea how to get back or if her presence will like, alter the events of history or something), so when the tears start flowing, she sort of works herself into a real tizzy.

And like she knew it would, it pulls at Stefan's heart strings.

"Oh, come on, Caroline." He doesn't come to her and wrap her in his arms or hold her to his chest or anything sappy like that, but he's never been one to tough through crying females, so when his voice softens and she moves to him herself and he pats her shoulder comfortingly, she decides that it's as good as she's going to get — and she's perfectly happy with that.

"We'll figure something out," he says, stroking his chin. His eyes roam the ceiling, and he'll look towards the door every so often, but Caroline just collapses back onto the couch, kicking off her boots.

"Can I... Stefan, would I be able to stay here?"

He looks at her funny, eyes slightly narrowed, but a smile plays on his lips and he regards her notably.

"I-I know that you don't know me from the bellhop, but I swear I'm okay and I'm not going to like, stake you in the middle of the night or something." She adds a few sniffles for good measure. "I just... I need a place to stay until I can figure out what to do."

He remains silent for a moment, a long, tense, nail-biting moment, but when he lets out a hearty sigh and leans forward to rest his elbows on his knees, he offers her a curt nod, and what she supposes is supposed to pass for a confirming smile.

"Alright," he relents. "But just until you figure out what you're doing." His brows raise, and his expression, his tone — he's nothing but serious. "I mean it," he levels a finger at her, "no funny business. You stay, you help out around here, and you figure out where you're going."

And she nods, smiling brightly (and it's completely genuine), and she can't even stop herself from dashing over to him and flinging her arms around his neck. His shoulders go rigid, his back straight and tense, and he doesn't hug her back for a few moments, so she pulls her arms tighter and squeals, and she eventually feels a light pat on the middle of her back.

She pulls away, and offers him a sheepish smile. "Ah, I'm sorry," she laughs, "I'm just so relieved."

He only nods in return, but she's much too familiar by the expression he wears to be fooled; and even though he tells her in a not so encouraging voice that if she tries to pull a fast one on him or attempts to bump him off in the middle of the night, he'll kill her without blinking, she can totally tell by the amusement in his tone that he's not so turned off by the idea of a roommate.

... ... ...

She stays inside for three whole days. Three whole days.

Stefan has plans in downtown Chicago, and she's not ready to venture out on her own yet, and yeah, the fact that she'd stick out like a sore thumb totally influences her decision to stay in.

She digs through his drawers and grabs a pair of pants, and she's sort of surprised that she nearly fits into them. Stefan has a narrow waist, trimmed hips, but the way he dresses in 2012 is misleading. Stupid skinny jeans and pants that don't fit.

He treats her to narrowed eyes and crossed arms when he comes home from wherever he was at (with blood smeared down the side of his neck, which she's prudent to point out), and he leans against the door frame with amusement creasing his features.

"What do you think you're doing?"

Caroline turns, shrugging, and tucks both arms behind her back.

"I needed clothes, Stefan..." And then she totally turns on the woe-is-me act, reminding him that she's come with nothing but the clothes she was wearing. He relents, his shoulders deflating, and he just shakes his head as he walks by her.

It takes her another two days to convince him that she needs things: clothing, shoes, jewelry; she's a vampire, and she doesn't want to call attention to them any more than Stefan's doing on his own (she finds a weird sort of thrill in pointing out his little excursions with females where he comes home at three in the morning with mussed hair, missing cuff links and absolutely reeking of beer and blood). She has a compelling argument and when she promises that she'll get a job and pay him back, he gives in (even though she's not really sure what she qualifies for in the 20's, if anything at all. He still makes her sign an IOU (her idea), but she thinks that she's paid him back plenty in the future.

She doesn't mention this part though, of course, but she can tell that she's starting to wedge her way into his heart (because she knows him well enough, so good riddance that it's taken this long — Stefan is seriously so freaking stubborn, it's unbelievable!), and she plays him bit by bit until he doesn't really treat her like a stranger that he's humoring.

... ... ...

Caroline loves pearls.

Like, she develops an infatuation for them, and since this is the 1920's (yeah, still totally weird), knockoffs aren't really like, invented yet (or at least no good knockoffs), and when Stefan buys her the most beautiful strand of soft pink pearls she's ever laid her eyes on, she almost melts in his arms.

"Make yourself look nice," he tells her when she holds the strand up to the light. Sunshine filters through the opaque shells, and the color is so soft and perfect against her skin, and she's just completely in love with them.

She hopes that when she gets back to Mystic Falls in real time, the pearls will come with her.

"Now, I don't know what you're wearing or who the hell decided that it was appropriate," Stefan slips a hand around her arm, pulling her away from the jewelry store and opens the passenger door to his car for her, "but you need to blend in. You're a walking target."

And she doesn't even feel inclined to feel offended, because even though his words are less than understanding, he's actually completely right. Plus, she thinks it probably has a lot more to do with his own reputation that he's trying to uphold: she's in his company now, and he's responsible for her — she figures that disapproval aimed at her will reflect badly on him, and she's learned quickly that Stefan is very much in tune with the rumor mill. He wears designer label clothing, always looks immaculate, and runs with the big dogs.

She has to play the part, too. (And truthfully? She's totally okay with that!)

Plus, it's already been established that she has no money (hence Stefan buying her pearls), and it's way easier to spend money on someone else's dime. Especially Stefan's, because let's just be real: the Salvatore's are loaded. And he hasn't exactly been forthcoming with that information (nothing about himself at all, actually), but she knows it, and she's totally going to milk him for all that he's worth.

"Where are you from?" Stefan asks her as they drive around the block. Her attention is skewed; stuck on the short hair and flappy dresses, and men looking immaculate in suits and vests and lots of colorful ties.

"Caroline," he snaps a finger in front of her face, calling for her attention.

"Hm?" She twists her hair up into a bun, because it at least makes her feel like she isn't sticking out quite so much. Stefan made her change into one of his pants (which is totally a no-no, because women were absolutely not supposed to wear trousers, and she's already gotten a few dirty looks — thanks so much for the bright idea, Stefan), but now she just feels totally mismatched.

"Where did you come from?"

He puts the shift into park though, and she basically like, busts through the door and into the shop. She has no excuse yet, and her mind is still a little frazzled from it all — quick-witted excuses are not in service yet.

She doesn't even know what to ask for when the saleslady greets her, so she waits for Stefan to join them.

He takes control, telling the woman, Clarice, to find Caroline something nice and pretty. "The nicest material you have, Ms. Swan." And Caroline can't even object. She's always kind of wanted to wear the dresses from the 20's. But only for like, a day or two (not indefinitely).

Clarice grabs her by the arm and pulls her into a back room, where a slip is waiting for her and a number of dresses hang on a hook tacked to the wall. She expects Clarice to leave, because Caroline's not about to drop her slacks in front of an audience, but Clarice doesn't leave, and when it becomes obvious that Caroline's not exactly humoring her, she waves a hand in Caroline's face and takes it upon herself to tug down the over sized pants she's wearing.

"Oh, I-I can do it myself," Caroline says, her hands sort of hovering above Clarice's head. She's not exactly sure what the etiquette calls for these days.

"Well then," Clarice stands, pink lips pursed and arms folded, foot tapping impatiently. "Get to it. I haven't got all day."

Oh, that's right; she probably has to be home by five to have dinner on the table for her husband or something.

"Mr. Salvatore asked that you try on this gown, for this evening," Clarice says, pulling a slinky gold dress from the pile. It had lots of sequins and beading, and was definitely full-cover.

"This evening?" Caroline echoes, because what? She wasn't aware of any plans she was to partake in, for the evening.

"Mm," Clarice agrees, shrugging the body of the dress over Caroline's head. "You know how he fancies those parties at the bar down the street."

Of course she doesn't, but Caroline decides to play along, because what else can she do, right?

"Oh, this is beautiful. You'll knock Mr. Salvatore's slacks right off!" (Which is totally weird, one because this isn't exactly the 'Mr. Salvatore' that she knows, and two — it's Stefan! It's just weird.)

But she smiles softly, shoulders straight and head back, the picture of poise, because that's the most she knows about the 1920's.

She wishes in hindsight, that she had done a little research on Stefan in the 20's, before they'd attempted to have Bonnie conjure up a picture of him from that time, because yeah, time travel sort of sucks when you're not prepared for it.

… … …

"So what does a girl do around here for fun?"

She quickly learns that unless you've got something to do, someone to hang out with, the nineteen twenties is just like the new millennium: boring. And Stefan seems to have like, no friends, so Caroline's stuck in his apartment, tuning the radio and reading through books.

He has a lot of them: a whole wall full! And he has quite the collection. She settles on The Sun Also Rises, because even though she's actually already read that book, it's new for it's time, and like, it was a huge deal when it came out. And of course, it's about flappers and the Lost Generation and everything she should know for the 1920's, so it's kind of like, history in the making!

She'd tried to go for one of his journals (she knew he had them around there somewhere), but she couldn't find any. This Stefan was definitely a sneaky Stefan.

Stefan just looks over his shoulder, framing her with an amused smile.

"You'll see tonight, Caroline." He turns back to the desk, a newspaper open in front of him. He's highlighting something on one of the pages, his ink pen scratching fine lines back and forth.

"Oh yeah?"

He drops his pen, turning to face her fully. He doesn't speak right away, and she watches him from over the top of the book.

"I'll introduce you to my brother, this evening," he says, and Caroline's ears perk up. As far as she knew, he and Damon weren't on speaking terms during the 20's.

"Brother?" she questions. "I didn't know you had a brother." (Total. Lie.)

Stefan nods, dark brows rising. "And a dame that is absolutely stunning."

Ooh, so maybe this evening won't be so bad. She's still stuck here until Bonnie figures out a way to call her back, but at least she'll get to see Damon in all of his Raging 20's glory. And like, she hates Katherine, but she can probably put up with her for a few hours.

"So, where are we going?" She abandons the book, deciding that whatever has his attention must be much more interesting, and she takes a seat on the edge of desk. Stefan looks up at her, his eyes wide and mouth open in surprise, and she wonders if this is totally going against etiquette.

"My friend, Gloria, she sings at this lounge downtown." Gloria… Gloria… she's heard of Gloria before. She just can't come up with a face for the name.

"She does Jazz," Stefan says, turning back to the paper. "Blues."

Caroline peeks over his arm, catching the title of the article he's underlining. Ripper of Monterey Strikes… He closes the paper before she can read more, but she knows for sure that he is the Ripper of Monterey. Elena told her all about his bender with Klaus in Chicago, and his ripper days.

"Ever been to a jazz lounge?" he questions, leaning back against the chair and folding his arms behind his head. He kicks his feet up onto the desk, his eyes trailing her face.

"Um, no." And it's cool because it's prohibition, so there's no way that she won't enjoy tonight! She's heard that prohibition makes everything that much more interesting, and she wants to find out for herself! And truth be told — it'd totally help her finish her history paper, and give her that really unique spin that will definitely give her an A+!

Stefan smiles, bright and genuine, and she thinks that the twinkle in his eye is one of mischievous shortcomings.

"Well, you're in for a treat."

… … …

So this 'dame' he talks of? Yeah, it's Rebekah. Rebekah.

AKA: the Evil Blood Slut.

He meets her out on the dance floor, and she's not really completely sure what's acceptable and what's not, but she swears what they're doing out there is totally not proper dance floor etiquette for the 20's.

It's weird; she can't even really explain it. It's totally G-rated, (if she was to go by 2012 standards), and there's no grinding, no bouncing, no exposed midriffs or long slits of leg, but Rebekah's arms are wrapped around Stefan's neck, one of her legs separating both of his, and he tips his head down towards her ear and they have a whispering game of cat and mouse, of pulling and taking.

It's just… it's different from how everyone else is dancing. The crowd around them sways to the beat of the song, the melodic curves of Gloria's voice, swinging each other forwards and backwards, under arms, over legs, but Rebekah and Stefan seem to just… dance to their own beat.

Like they're the only ones out on the dance floor.

Caroline hangs off near the bar, sipping on some sort of super tart champagne, keeping her eyes on Stefan. She doesn't know anyone else there (aside from Rebekah, and yeah — she's so not interested in becoming friends with the Evil Blood Slut; not now, not ever), and she tries her best to stay in the shadows.

And she's pretty much okay with it, because while it's not usually her thing, she sort of is enjoying just people watching right now. She likes the pretty colors, the scandalous behavior of woman (which, Oh my God, these people would all drop dead from heart attacks if they could see the modern kids on the dance floor), and the coy interactions between the men and the women.

It's a different era, but it seems more like a different world.

"Caroline!" Stefan's suddenly in front of her, Rebekah tucked securely in his arm. She holds onto his neck, her red lips twisted into a protective smile, and she regards Caroline with the same amount of bitchiness that modern day Rebekah does.


"Caroline, this is Rebekah," he says, grabbing her arm and pulling her out from the shadows. "Rebekah, this is my… new friend, Miss Caroline Sunshine."

They shake hands, but it's so awkward, and Caroline totally just wants to drop Rebekah's hand and run. Rebekah has a firm hold on her hand though, and Caroline's not going anywhere.

"Caroline Sunshine? Really?" Her displeasure is obvious in her tone, and thin blond brows rise dubiously.

Caroline just smiles, the most obviously fake, honestly insincere, sugary sweet smile she can manage. Stefan nudges Rebekah, tugging on the strand of pearls that fall from Rebekah's neck.

"Be nice," he warns. "No need to high-hat my guest here." His tone is too light to be taken seriously.

"Oh, are you going to eat her?"

And like, seriously?


"No," Caroline speaks up, and she knows that she probably shouldn't, but Rebekah's just so infuriating and pompous and just, UGH. "I'm a vampire."

Stefan's face contorts, growing hard and his eyes go cold. Rebekah's face falls almost instantly, and Caroline would be lying if she said she didn't get some satisfaction from leaving Rebekah speechless.

"Then you might want to watch your tongue, you Dumb Dora," Rebekah snaps, shifting in Stefan's arms. He holds her back, but his eyes are glued to Caroline.

"I'm an O—"

"I know, an Original vamp—" So she totally realizes her mistake — just a few moments after she makes it, when damage control is like, impossible.

"You know?" Rebekah breaks free of Stefan's hold, pushing herself right into Caroline's face. "You know about the Original vampires?" She's almost surprised, like she can't quite decide whether to gloat that their legend has reached so far, or punch Caroline in the face for stepping up to her knowing that she's an Original vampire.

"Caroline, how do you know?" Stefan adds, pulling Rebekah back. "Not many know that the Originals actually exist."

"As they shouldn't," Rebekah snaps. "If people think we're nothing more than frolicking children, then we loose our power."

Caroline can't even keep from rolling her eyes. "I just—"

"Who's your maker?" Rebekah cuts her off (which is sort of a good thing, because she definitely didn't have an explanation for that one), but then her question grabs Stefan's attention, and they're both standing there in silence, eyebrows raised in expectation and like, she panics.

She absolutely can't tell them that Katherine killed her after Damon, his own estranged brother had forced his blood into her body (in an evil ploy to get back at Stefan himself) because then Stefan would probably go berserk and start killing random people and Rebekah would murder her just for the hell of it. And like, how weird would breakfast be (in the case that she lived through the night) if she told them that yeah, she's part of Stefan's bloodline, and she knows both of them in twenty twelve. No, that just won't go over well, she doesn't even have to imagine it to see that.

"Rebekah, Stefan — is there a problem here?"

And no fucking way. Things just got like, ten times worse, because she knows that voice. She's been playing that voice for the past week and a half.

Rebekah and Stefan separate, and yep, there's Klaus, standing behind them, looking as innocent and charming as ever.

Rebekah releases her hold of Stefan and stomps over to Klaus, lips turned down into a pout.

"She knows, Nik." She motions towards Caroline, and when Klaus' eyes meet hers, she's rendered completely speechless. Like, she totally freezes, and she can't do anything: she can't speak, she can't move — she can't even look away!

"She knows what, Rebekah?" Klaus holds her gaze, sparing her for a few moments to look at Stefan, but then his gaze comes right back to her.

"She knows that we're Originals, Nik," Rebekah whines, tugging on the buckle of Klaus' sleeve. He looks immaculate: clean cut (shaven more than she's ever seen him before), honey colored hair slicked back into tight waves, white tuxedo primped and fine. No more gritty British stereotypes.

"What?" He looks to Rebekah, eyebrows retreating back into his hairline. "That's not possible. No one is supposed to know about our physical existence here."

And then three sets of eyes are on her again, and panic floods her body in an icy cool rush.

"I… I-it's a legend," she says, shrugging. She's never been so good with ad-libbing, and she's especially bad under pressure. "I've heard about K— the Original Vampires, but no one's ever seen them before…"

It's so weird talking about them like they aren't standing right there, like Klaus himself, the big bad hybrid isn't like, courting her or whatever. Like Rebekah didn't try to kill her ex-boyfriend and her best friend in a matter of two days. Like this stupid family isn't making her already complex life so much more complicated.

"I… I thought I was going to meet your brother?"

Okay, subject change — always a good thing.

"Ah, but Nik here is my brother." Stefan slings an arm around Klaus' shoulders, and they both stare at her with an intensity that she's just not at all comfortable with.

And damn him. This was not what she was expecting. She wanted Damon; a soft, tender, not-so-snarky Damon, who maybe she could manipulate into taking her out for a night on the town.

Not Klaus, the worst pseudo-brother ever.

"Alright, alright." Klaus' voice is soft, his expression tender, and it's totally weird because the scowl that is everything Klaus — the one that he wears permanently, the same one she met him with — is gone. His hand is on her arm a second later, and he's pulling her towards a section of round tables against the wall, camouflaged with thick metal stairs and dark lighting and thick maroon colored curtains.

"Let's not talk about this here." Klaus' hand is on the small of her back now; pressure light, fingers gentle, and he guides her towards a table, letting her set the pace. "Come, Miss—"

"Um, Caroline," she says with a breathless smile. "It's Caroline."

Rebekah follows along behind them, arms still crossed, perpetual pout still aimed at whoever will look her way, and Stefan comes up on her other side, expression now so totally (unfortunately) intrigued.

Crap. What the hell has she just gotten herself into?

... ... ...

"It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new. But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful. There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is power."

- Alan Cohen -

A/N: Merp. Don't know where this came from. I was watching S3 E3 last night, and I am just in love with that episode. The dynamics between Stefan and Klaus? So amazing. And I thought it'd be pretty cool to see how Caroline reacted to it all. So yeah, that's my back story for this little fic.

I would love, love, love to get your thoughts/comments/ideas - anything at all you'd be willing to give me! So if you have the time, please do review! The best way for an author to know that their work is appreciated, that they're doing something right (or wrong) is to get FEEDBACK. So yeah, if you'd be so kind...

Also, I actually did know a Mary Sunshine... in college. Never found out how she came to be called Mary Sunshine, but I thought I'd throw that in, because truthfully: I'm kind of jealous. All I have is a boring old name and nickname that is just NOT sharing-appropriate.