Hey there Timeless fans! Please read my WHOLE AUTHOR'S NOTE BEFORE READING. Trust me, you need to!
So after this past week's episode, I had a little plot bunny hopping around in my head and decided to write a one-shot continuation of this story. I know a lot of you have asked for extra bits and pieces because you love it so much (and I'm so glad you do!) So here is a one shot to also say thank you for all the love and support of this story. It means so much to me!
A couple things: This is based around Klaus's experiences after killing the Hunter and his subsequent torture and hallucinations (mentioned in 4x06). I wanted to expand on this idea for my own purposes and explore the possible hallucinations he went through after having experienced Caroline's death in Timeless. If you remember, he sees her die in 1492 and doesn't know she survived until he sees her when she returns to the present day. Because of this I had to change some canon around a bit. The original tale of The Five we saw on the show took place in 1100, so for my purposes I bumped it into the future. I decided to go with the 1800s because I just enjoy that time period a lot (and wanted to picture Klaus wearing a cravat ;)
So the flashback takes place in 1800s instead of 1100s. Also, in keeping with the theme of Timeless, I've included some canon elements. Elena has still become a vampire...though it's not too important to this story to explain how and why. If I ever write a true sequel to Timeless I will explain the head canon I have invented for myself. But for now, just know that after the events of season 3, Klaus and Caroline have been splitting their time between travels and Mystic Falls...until the new Hunter is discovered and Klaus has become more interested in spending more time in Mystic Falls.
Ok, hope I did a good job filling in the blanks. Enjoy!
Klaus threw open the heavy door and dragged her inside of the room. "Let go of me," the doppelganger-recently turned vampire- protested.
"Certainly," he said releasing her once they were both inside, with the door shut safely behind them. "I apologize for the lack of windows, it's to preserve the art. And of course to prevent you from taking off your daylight ring and burning yourself to death in the sun."
The brunette scoffed, as if it was the most ridiculous suggestion she had ever heard.. "I'm not going to kill myself. I would never do that."
It was just another example of this lot's foolishness. Always rushing into things, always thinking that they had all the answers. They were like children compared to him, little children who needed constant supervision so they didn't end up drinking bleach or burning the house down while their parents were away. Their lives would be a whole lot easier if they would let bygones be bygones and just listen to him once in a while.
"Oh but you'll want to," he told her, "I did. The problem is I'm immortal." Elena's head turned up toward him. Now he had her attention. Her irritated scowl melted into one of curiosity and concern—not for him of course, but over what was about to happen to her. She had killed a Hunter and as he had said to her beloved Stefan, when a vampire kills a Hunter, there are consequences.
"You went through this?"
"Yes I did," he replied ominously, "for 52 years, 4 months and 9 days. I was tormented…my dreams…my every waking moment, relentless, never-ending torture. It's the only period of my life when I actually felt time."
He watched her staunch bravery falter, the fear of the unknown causing her to shiver. Yes it was always easy to fight the flesh and blood demons, but one's inner ghosts…now there was a true and unstoppable enemy. "So you knew this would happen if Connor died? That's why you got involved?" Did Stefan know too? Caroline?"
"Caroline knows nothing. She's tucked away in a Villa outside of Tuscany where no Hunter can touch her," Klaus said, "as for Stefan, all that he knew was that the Hunter needed to be kept alive." Klaus stepped back toward her, staring down at her, making sure she felt the true gravity of the situation, "you should have listened when he said he had it covered love."
"What else does Stefan know?"
Klaus smirked. As if he would pull up a chair and tell the doppelganger about all the secrets her vampire love was keeping from her. They both had their secrets, him and the Ripper, that they kept from the women they loved. It was mutual understanding that had renewed their tainted friendship—for the time being at least. "Well," he said, "that's one of life's little mysteries isn't it?"
"What's in this for you?" She countered. "Why do you care if I kill myself or not? Is it because of Caroline?"
He smiled. Yes, he would let her think that. He would let them all think it. Klaus had his motivations, his reasons, his own personal agenda. It was better for them to assume that, than let them discover his real reasons for needing the Hunter and Elena kept alive. He had told the Salvatores that he no longer desired to make hybrids, however Elena served him better as an insurance policy when she was human. Klaus turned from her, crossing to the door and knocking twice to signal his hybrid outside to let him out, his knuckles making a loud thumping noise against the heavy metal door.
"Well how did you make it stop?" She called after him.
Klaus stepped out into the hall and turned back, letting out a heavy sigh. A sigh that held half a century of memory and misery. "I didn't," he admitted. This time he didn't have the answers. "Eventually it just stopped."
Elena's lip quivered giving away how truly terrified she felt. Klaus could have that effect. But he saw no reason to sugarcoat what she was in for. He had no inkling as to what had finally caused his own torment to cease, so unless her friends came up with something, she was in for a very long and wretched existence inside that room.
Without another word, he let the door close, locking her inside, and instructed his hybrid to make sure no one came in or out. Once that was settled, Klaus made his way back upstairs, pulling his phone from his jacket pocket. The whole situation brought back memories that he would rather forget. It was times like this when he needed her by his side; needed her to dispel the darkness that consumed him. Klaus didn't believe in the humanity switch that so many vampires spoke of, so there was no turning his emotion on or off. He felt what he felt; pain, satisfaction, unhappiness, gratification, misery…she was the only thing that made the difference. He pressed down on the touch screen and raised the phone to his ear.
"Hey, it's Caroline, I can't answer right now so leave a message."
It had been hours since he had spoken to her. The last time he had called her was when he landed back in Mystic Falls. After their trip to find the Hunter's grave in Italy—not exactly how he had originally hoped their first trip to the Italian country side would be—he sent her off to Tuscany to enjoy the sunshine and grapes, with a promise that he would join her again.
"I'd rather you not be in Mystic Falls with a vampire Hunter on the loose love," he had said to her. She had protested of course, but he had finally placated her with a promise to keep her friends safe.
With the doppelganger stowed away and her friends who were still present in Mystic Falls at bay, Klaus locked himself up in his study with a bottle of bourbon for good measure. He didn't like being reminded of the things he had tried to forget. The past few centuries, up until a couple of months ago, had been the worst of his existence. But in particular, the 52 years, 4 months, and 9 days that he had referenced to the doppelganger, those had been the worst of the worst.
Klaus was furious with Rebekah for what she had done. Trusted some stupid human, over him, her own brother, her flesh and blood, because of what he claimed he could offer her. A cure. It was pathetic. The Hunter had played his baby sister like a finely tuned violin and had played her well. And yet she was still crying over his corpse. Klaus had left her in her room, crying over his lifeless body, as if her tears could wipe away the betrayal and bring her love back to life.
He had learned long ago that tears couldn't wake the dead. Nor could they undo what had already been done.
He shut and barred the door to his room, attempting to drown out the sounds of her wailing. She had been going back and forth for the past hour, between rage and sadness, and he could bare it no longer. The only thing to be done was to leave her to her grief. Tomorrow would be another day; they would leave this place behind and travel back to London. Klaus could feel it calling to him. He hated being anywhere near England at times and yet, it was the only place he could feel some semblance of peace.
He stepped over to the washbasin, filled with clean water, and began washing the blood from his face and hands. The Hunters' blood. All five of them. It had tasted sweet in his rage. His victory over yet another enemy made his pride swell. His only hope was that Mikael would hear rumors of what transpired. To know that once again, the world had failed to defeat him.
The water turned pink, staining the white basin, and Klaus stripped off his bloodied clothes, throwing them into the fire. He climbed into his bed, letting the sheets cover him, and dragged a hand over his face. Maybe he would dagger Rebekah again. It was obvious he had allowed her too much freedom. He hated the thought. Hated that every time he daggered her, meant waking her up again, and seeing her look of hatred and disappointment and betrayal. But it was for her own good. One day she would understand. He continued to debate with himself over what should be done as he drifted off into a deep sleep.
Klaus awoke with a start. His eyes flashing open, adjusting quickly to the bright daylight. There was someone in his room.
"Mother," he gasped. His eyes flicked to the door that was still barred from the night before. "Have you come to kill me?"
"No my son," she said, her long green dress sweeping the floor as she stepped towards his bed, "you will have done my job for me before the day is done."
Klaus flashed forward, his hand darting out to wrap around her throat. But she disappeared before he could touch her. He spun, searching for where she escaped, but she had vanished without a trace.
That morning, they left their Italian home, making their way toward Paris instead. He had decided to be lenient with his baby sister this time and thought perhaps some time spent in her favorite city would ease her heartache and remind her how gracious her brother was for sparing her. Klaus had let Rebekah have her burial, but they couldn't stay in Italy any longer. They had to move, especially if Esther had returned from the grave. Before starting down the road, he checked the coffin that held his mother's body. She was there, sleeping soundly, still young and fresh as they day she had died. Decay and rot had not touched her.
As his horse trotted down the dirt path, he saw his mother again. Rebekah told him he was mad, that there was no one there, her tone still thick with contempt. But no matter how much she hated him, she kept a cautious eye on him for the rest of the journey.
The duo made it to France, with their precious cargo in tow. It was simple enough to compel themselves a room at an inn. Like an old trick. Klaus decided to go for a hunt that evening, when the moon was almost full. The small French village was sparse; there was plenty of room and not much of a chance of his kills being noticed right away. There in the forest he could smell someone, a human, a boy he reckoned. Not very old—maybe eleven or twelve. He walked alone, an odd hour for a child to be out in the dark woods. Klaus smiled to himself. He saw the small figure ahead on the forest path and ran to him, grabbing him up and ripping into his neck.
"No, please! Niklaus!"
Klaus froze at the familiar voice, dropping the boy's body to the ground. The small human rolled over, his black hair spreading out on the ground as the blood poured from his neck and soaked into the forest floor. His small hands grasped upwards, to Klaus, begging him for help.
"Henrik?" Klaus questioned, sweeping the hair away from his face.
"Brother," he choked out, the blood making a sick gurgling sound in his throat.
Without another thought, Klaus scooped him up and ran, carrying him back to the inn. Henrik. How was he here? Alive? He would not let him die again. Not when he could save him this time. Klaus ran as fast as he could, until his home was in sight, he looked down to Henrik and noticed that his arms were empty. Henrik was gone.
This time, he did not tell Rebekah what he saw.
Klaus paced his room late into the evening, the embers from the fire glowing red and dying little by little. But he didn't need the warmth or the light. He needed to know why he was having the visions. First his mother, then Henrik. Why were these ghosts haunting him after so long?
"I have the answers you seek."
Behind him Klaus saw the Hunter, the mortal wound in his chest still very fresh, but he was standing there very alive. Klaus grabbed the dagger from the nearby table and ran forward, thrusting it into the Hunter's ribs. The man laughed in his face.
"Why won't you die?" Klaus growled, twisting the blade.
"You cannot kill what is already dead," the Hunter replied, "I will never stop Klaus," he whispered in his ear, his cold dead breath tickling the back of Klaus's neck, "not until you are dead."
Klaus leaned back with a smirk. "Unfortunately," he said, "I can't die."
"Unfortunate," the hunter replied, "for you."
Klaus didn't know what the Hunter's words meant, but he didn't care. What importance did the words of a dead man hold? If the past three days were anything to go by, the hallucinations were over. He had slept through the nights, enjoyed his days, he forgot about seeing Esther and Henrik—currently he strolled the streets of Paris, looking for his next meal. An older man walked past him, tipping his hat politely, the woman on his arm offering him a gentle smile. Out of the corner of his eye, Klaus saw a flash of wild, curly hair and heard a tinkling sound of laughter he hadn't heard in centuries.
The woman turned, and Klaus stopped in his tracks. He knew that face.
"Katerina," he murmured, a slow, satisfied grin spreading across his face. His luck was finally changing.
She looked up at the sound of her name and Klaus flashed himself to her before she could run, pulling her across the street and into an alley where they would be alone. His fingers wrapped around her throat, pressing into her flesh.
"Katerina," he said again, expecting to see some grade of fear in her eyes, but all he saw was amusement.
"Guess again," she said, "min hjarta."
They were words he hadn't heard since before he was human. Words that he used to cherish after long forest walks or a tumble in the fresh summer grass. His grip did not falter though, as anger and rage began to churn within his stomach.
He remembered Tatia. Remembered how much he had loved her. Remembered his utter devotion to this woman who had captivated his heart and soul; who made him believe that he must be worth something, if he had earned the honor of this angel's love. That was, until he found out he shared her heart, with his own perfect brother. No matter what he did, he could never sway her to be only his. In the end, she served a greater purpose-gave him a greater gift than love-with her lifeblood.
"Tatia," he sneered, "how are you alive?"
"Niklaus, what a monster you have become," she said in their old tongue, that was now long dead, much deader than her. "Release me. What happened to my gentle love?"
"That man is dead," Klaus replied, squeezing her throat, "you did not want that man."
"This one should die too. For no one wants him either."
A wave of hot anger crashed over Klaus then, triggering the firmness of his grip. He tightened his fingers fully into her throat, blood pouring from her neck, her soft flesh ripping away until his merciless hand. Her face turned to ash and she dropped to the ground. Klaus looked over his shoulder, to see if anyone had seen them, and when he turned back around Tatia was gone.
He went straight home, running up to his bedroom, and shutting himself inside. His breath came quickly, chest heaving up and down. Tatia couldn't be alive. What did that mean? He would take Rebekah and run again, get out of Paris, and run so far and fast that Tatia could not find them again. It had to be Mikael's doing. It wasn't the first time he had watched someone die and the bodies disappear. First Esther, then Henrik, now Tatia. He prayed that he wouldn't see—no, he would not imagine it.
"Who were you just thinking about?"
Klaus spun quickly to see Tatia again, standing behind him; her delicate hand wrapped around one of the bedposts. The fatal neck wound he had given her in the alley bled down onto the cream color of her dress. She was no longer wearing the current fashion, as she had been on the street, she now wore the rough fabric dress that she had donned day in and day out in the old village.
She stepped toward him, her hand reaching up and cupping his face. "Please tell me min hjarta, it could make this go along much more quickly."
"Why are you here?" He asked through gritted teeth, fists clenching at his sides.
"The Hunter told you," she replied, "we are coming for you Niklaus. Until you end it. He will have his victory."
"I will not die."
Tatia stood on her toes then, raising herself and brushing her lips across his cheek as she spoke.
"Then we will not stop."
And she was right. They didn't stop. Klaus had found his reprieve in those three days before, but that was the only time he would ever know peace. The weeks went by and he was visited by figures and dreams that were meant to shake his soul. He saw Tatia again, and Henrik too. He saw his mother. He saw the faces of people he had killed. He saw his siblings, tucked away in boxes, all screaming the same messages: telling him how much of a monster he was, how he did not deserve to live, how if he were strong enough he would find a way to end himself.
The torture was endless, but Klaus would not let them win.
"I will find your limit," the Hunter had said to him in one of the rare instances that he appeared in his own form. "I will break you."
Klaus sat alone in his room, a bottle of bourbon in his hand. He had not changed out of his breeches in days and his white shirt hung open, unbuttoned. He and Rebekah had moved to a country house in a remote area of South France. He could no longer be trusted to hide away within human society. The hallucinations made him volatile and careless. He attacked people on the street like a mad man in broad daylight because he thought they were someone else.
Rebekah knocked softly at his door, entering without waiting for a word of permission from him. Klaus remained frozen in his chair, but his eyes followed her movements. She slipped the maroon silk cravat from around his neck and wiped away the blood and alcohol that stained his chin.
"I wish there was something more I could do," she said kneeling in front of him. Klaus did not respond, but instead took another drink from the bottle. His old friend. His only friend.
Rebekah licked her lips nervously, and scooted closer to him. "You see him sometimes, don't you? Alexander? I hear you call his name."
"Yes," Klaus said with a scoff, "I see him more times than I would like."
"Does he ever say anything about me?"
Klaus's jaw ticked, his teeth clamping together hard enough to break them. "Is that all you care about?" He growled, pushing her away and crossing to the other side of the room. "The Hunter tried to kill you, he continues to torture me, but your only concern is whether or not he still loves you."
"We had something real," she said, tears glistening in her eyes, Klaus didn't know if those tears were for him or her lost love. "In spite of it all I believe he really did love me."
He shoved her away, disgusted, getting up from the chair. "It wasn't real. All he wanted was to kill you. To kill us all. He didn't care about you!"
"What would you know," Rebekah screamed back, standing up and coming toward him, "what do you know about real love Niklaus?"
Klaus threw the bottle in his hand, the glass shattering against the wall, the remaining liquid staining the damasked paper.
"More than you sweet sister," he said, "I watched my love die in front of me. Her heart ripped out of her chest. I saw the look in her eyes as she died. Or have you forgotten that?"
Rebekah's tears disappeared, a sick smile twisting her face.
"So there it is," she said, but it didn't sound like her voice. She sounded different. Sinister in a way that he hadn't heard her sound before. "Your mind is incredibly well guarded Klaus. You keep your secrets well. Although I would have never guessed that a beast like you could truly love." There was a shimmer of air, and Rebekah transformed back into the Hunter. Klaus cursed himself, he should have known. There was nothing he could trust any longer. "Now I know how I will break you."
The Hunter was gone then, leaving Klaus alone in his room. Hot tears pricked the backs of his eyes. He knew what was coming now, Tatia, Henrik, Esther, they had all been nothing compared to what the Hunter now had to use against him.
"You're certain about this?" Rebekah asked. It was really Rebekah this time. She had forgiven him quickly, after the torturous hallucinations began. They always forgave each other, in the end.
Klaus had awoken her in the night to help him prepare. He had never implicated so much trust in his baby sister before, considering that she was still mad at him for killing her lover, but it was the only chance he had.
He had lead her to the cellar. This house, before Klaus had taken it over, had belonged to a pack of werewolves. Located in the cellar, was a dungeon of sorts, where the wolves would chain themselves at full moon to prevent themselves from harming humans. The cells were strong, made of hard thick stone. Klaus could only hope that it would be a match for his strength.
"You don't have to do this," Rebekah said, "I'm still here, I will help you."
He could hear his sister's confidence wavering. "This is helping me."
"As long as it takes."
"Rebekah," Klaus said, his voice raw with exhaustion and desperation, "The Hunter is trying to make me his last kill and the only way he will accomplish this is if I kill myself." He told his sister about his hallucinations, about everyone he had seen, every painful moment.
"So you've seen everyone but…" her voice trailed off. Klaus nodded.
"I don't think I will survive it," he admitted.
Rebekah nodded, tears in her eyes; real tears this time, not the false ones that he had seen in the eyes of the Hunter. She said no more slowly shutting the door to the dungeon, and locking him inside. Klaus fell asleep, laying on the cold stone of the dungeon.
He felt a warm palm cupping his cheek. The sunlight assaulted his eyelids, turning his vision red, as nuzzled his face into the hand. He didn't open his eyes, but felt her body scoot closer to him on the bed; one of her slim naked legs moving over his. Her hand trailed down his face, to his chest, tracing unknown shapes over his still heart.
"Wake up," she whispered, her sweet breath ghosting across his lips. She pressed her mouth to his, her sugary kiss convincing him to finally open his eyes and take in the sight of her.
But as his vision focused, she was gone. The sunlight was gone. All that remained was the cold stone and her phantom touch. He sat up and dragged a hand over his face, attempting to slow his breath. Dreams like this were no stranger to him. He had dreamed of her for decades after her death.
"Klaus," he heard her call again.
She was standing at the edge of the dark room, running toward him. This was no place for a girl like her, he thought. He caught her in a fierce embrace. Her lips crashed into his, her kiss desperate and violent. Her kisses were like hot iron, branding the very depths of his soul. As he kissed her, he could taste the salt of her tears. When he pulled away he saw that she was crying.
"You let me die," she cried.
"You did, you just stood there and did nothing."
"There was nothing I could have done," he pleaded.
"Nothing you could have done?" She said pushing away from him. "You're an original vampire. Older than any other vampire in existence. Stronger and faster. Invincible. You expect me to believe that you could have done nothing to save me?"
Klaus stumbled forward, his hands reaching out to her. "Caroline please—"
"You let me die," she said, the anger and hurt turning her blue eyes dark, "you didn't love me enough."
Klaus yelled, darting forward and knocking her against the wall. He heard Caroline cry out and saw the fear in her eyes. "Stop it! You are just the Hunter! This is not real!"
"This is real Klaus," she said, "this is me."
"You're lying," he growled, tears forming in his own eyes.
"Do you want to chance it?" She asked. "This is the first time we've been together in over two hundred years, do you really want it to be over again so quickly?"
He released her, leaning back. He knew it was a lie. He knew this wasn't really her. But he reached for her again, crushing her fragile body into his chest. The lie, with her standing there, was much better than the reality, where she was dead.
They lay there, intertwined, Caroline tracing the lines of his face with her forefinger. Klaus inhaled her as he watched her studying him. It had been so long, he never thought he would have this ever again. Even with others…
"You had other women?" Caroline asked. Klaus flinched, unable to admit his indiscretions to his love.
"Yes." He hated himself for it, every time there had been another in his bed. But some nights, he needed to feel something, anything. Some nights he would pretend it was her hands on him, her skin he covered with his body. But it never measured up to the way he felt with her. She was unlike any other woman he knew and touched him in a way the others couldn't.
"I don't know if I like that," she replied, dropping her hand from his face. "I think it means you didn't really love me."
"They meant nothing love," he said reaching for her, but she pulled away.
"I don't believe you." Caroline sat up and hugged her knees to her chest. Klaus followed her, sitting back on his heels in front of her.
"How can I acquit myself?"
Her mouth twisted, in that adorable way it did when she was thinking on something with a difficult answer. "You could kill yourself. Then we could be together."
"I'm waiting Klaus, waiting for you on the other side," she pleaded, "I have been since the day I died and now you can finally see me. Hear me." She shifted then, moving onto her knees and reaching out to him. Her head settled on his chest, her arms wrapping around him. "We can be together. In the afterlife."
Klaus chuckled at her naivety. "There is no afterlife."
"There is," Caroline said, "And it's beautiful." He looked down at her angelic eyes, begging him to submit to her request. "It's nothing without you though."
Klaus leaned forward to kiss her, but she disappeared from his arms.
"I've learned a lot about you these past weeks," The Hunter said to him one morning. Was it morning? Klaus did not know. Each slow day blended into the next, entire centuries passing between sunrise and sunset. "Not that a monster like you deserves love, but that girl—Caroline—really loved you."
"Don't speak her name," Klaus glowered from the corner of one of the dungeon cells.
"Although she was a monster, just like you," he continued, walking a small circle around the floor, "she deserved her death."
"Tell me, did it hurt watching her body fall to the ground? Watching your father gain another victory over you? Or did it feel like a relief later? She was your weakness right? Having your weakness destroyed so conveniently must have made it easier." Klaus's fist connected with the Hunter's face, before he even saw him jump, dropping him to the ground. The Hunter spit blood onto the stone floor, chuckling, as he turned his head upwards. "Deep down you wanted her to die. You would never have to face her betrayal. You would never have to see the day that she would stop loving you. It's better this way isn't it?"
"Enough!" Klaus yelled, picking him up and tossing him into the wall. But he vanished again before he hit the stone.
"Niklaus." It was Esther this time. He heard his mother's gentle voice calling to him. She hadn't used that tone since he was a child. "There is a way. To prove your love." Klaus could barely move. He hadn't fed since…he wasn't sure. His skin was gray and desiccated. His eyes rolled toward his mother's face. "Nature restores the balance. A life for a life."
"What," he croaked out, "do you mean?"
"Give your life and we can restore hers."
Klaus let out a humorless laugh. "How do I know you aren't lying?"
"Isn't the chance enough?" Esther asked, "The chance to have her live on."
"We still would not be together."
"You are vain my son," Esther said, "you cannot survive without her, but she can survive without you."
"I want to live," Caroline said, "please Klaus."
Klaus was holding her again. It was the most painful thing in the world. But he couldn't have her near him without touching some part of her. Their moments together were so fleeting.
"How do you know Esther is not lying to us?"
"I see things on the other side," she told him, "I know what she's saying is true."
He brushed her hair back, his heart constricting at the way the silky strand felt against in calloused fingers. "And if it doesn't work?"
"Then you'll be here with me."
"I can't," Klaus said with some difficulty.
"You never loved me," she pushed him away.
"Caroline how many times—"
"I never loved you," she spat, "it was all deception. A trick. I prevented you from breaking the curse, that's all I ever cared about. I would have realized soon that you are not worthy of my love." Klaus reached for her but she flinched away from his touch. "If you really loved me you would die so I could live."
The months turned into years and Caroline's words of devotion and promises of forever turned into vitriol and hate. His dreams were haunted by her violent death each night, his waking hours were kept as she railed against him again and again, voicing the blame he had set upon himself for decades already. He should have done something. He could have done something. If it weren't for him, she would be alive and happy.
Klaus tossed and turned in torment. No blood, no sleep, no anything except constant pain and torture. He just wanted it to end. Wanted it to go away.
"It's easy," Caroline whispered to him, "all you have to do is die."
"But I can't—"
"Go to Mikael. Find him. He has the weapon."
"I won't," Klaus protested, "I won't let him kill me. Anything but that."
"A witch then," she suggested, "there must be some spell."
"Do you really want me to die?" Klaus asked, his confidence crumbling as she nodded her heard.
"Think about it. If you die now, I never meet you. The time travel spell never happens, so I will live."
Her wide eyes were like a child's, begging him to see that the answer was so simple. And it was. It was so simple. She was the only thing that had ever really mattered to him. What did his life matter, without her in it? What did the constant running ever mean, if he wasn't running towards her? No one else had cared for him. Even Rebekah and Elijah had betrayed him to their hearts desires. But Caroline, good, sweet Caroline who he never deserved, she was the one person who didn't deserve to be a martyr in his wake of destruction.
Klaus remembered overhearing his parents one night, long ago, his father said something to his mother that he would never forget as long as he lived.
If you love them enough, you'll find a way.
He didn't know what they had been discussing at the time, although it was only a month after that they were turned to vampires, so in retrospect it wasn't that hard for him to put it together. But they were words that stayed with him, long after he had killed his mother, made a great enemy of his father, and shook off his weak human shell to grasp the power that his mother's spell had bestowed upon him. Klaus learned that if he wanted something badly enough, he would find a way to gain it.
He thought of these words as he broke from his prison cell. It wasn't that difficult after all, he mused, even with his lack of strength from not feeding. Rebekah had left his care to a servant, no longer able to bear the weight of being his constant keeper alone. He compelled his freedom and killed the man stationed to be his guard. With the coppery blood coating the inside of his throat and warming his belly, he stalked up the stairs in search of his true freedom.
"You held out on me Niklaus," Caroline said as she trailed behind him, "this whole time you knew of a way."
"I am sorry my love."
His eyes did not see her though, as his feet dragged up the final step and he walked down the corridors, in the direction of his room. The house was a cold blue, the light of the sun waning as it sunk to the other side of the world.
The room remained untouched, his things just as he had left them…how long ago? Klaus had marked the days. Nineteen thousand, one hundred and four; each one worse than the last. But now it would be done. A twisted smile, that did not meet his eyes, stretched across his face.
Under his bed a false board came apart, in it he held the possessions most dear to him, among them a drawing of Caroline that he had sketched a hundred years or so after her death. No amount of ink and paper could do her beauty justice. There was also the necklace she had given him, the small heart charm with her initials. He had removed it, for the first time in centuries, when this assault on his mind had begun. Now he replaced it around his throat, wanting to have something of hers with him as he died. Finally he removed a small bundle, an object wrapped in rough cloth held together by a thick strand of twine. He placed it on his bed, with the care one would attribute to holding a small child, and opened the dark present with a flick of his wrist.
A white stake, carved with ancient symbols, bewitched with protective spells, and made from the white oak tree his father had burned centuries ago. When Mikael's assassin had attempted to slip this stake into his heart some time ago, Klaus had almost let him. Instead he had fought, killed the would-be assassin, and held onto the stake for safekeeping. Until this moment, he hadn't understood why he had kept it, and he hadn't been so unspeakably glad that he did.
He sunk to the bed, stake in his hand, and stared at it. Caroline sat next to him.
"It will be over soon," she said gently, "and I'll be here."
Klaus looked at her bright face. She looked hopeful. Radiant. Better than he remembered. He reached a hand up to her cheek, running his thumb across her delicate ski. All he had hoped for was that maybe, she would be there on the other side, waiting for him in whatever afterlife existed, just like she said. He was a selfish bastard; he didn't want her to live without him. He wanted her, whether it was both of them alive or both of them dead. Maybe that was why he would never truly deserve her. Out of all the promises she had made him over these past years, he hoped that this would be the one that rang true.
She grasped his hands, helping him to lift the dagger over his heart. "This is for us," she said, "we'll be together forever. I forgive you. I forgive you for not saving me. For being a monster. It will all be forgotten. I promise."
Klaus nodded, she could say anything at that moment and he would agree. He just wanted it to end. He just wanted her. The tip of the dagger pressed into his heart, and he could feel the fire from its spell seeping into him. He leaned forward to meet Caroline's lips, the motion causing the dagger to penetrate his skin and sink into his chest. He would feel the touch of her kiss, one more time, before he ceased to exist.
He winced at the pain of the wound, cutting him more severely than any other blade or weapon throughout history. But it couldn't cut deeper than the pain of not having her. Of feeling what it was like to have her love and then have it be taken away.
Just as his lips touched hers a wave of realization crashed over him. The air was sucked out of the room and he gasped at the swift change in the atmosphere. It felt like he had come up for air, after being underwater for so long. It was like waking from a dream. He open his eyes, thinking he might be dead, to see that Caroline was gone.
His bedroom door burst open. "NIK!" Rebekah screamed, rushing toward him and grabbing the dagger, flinging it away. He had barely dug it into himself. The wound healed quickly, as his sister wept frantically, her fingers fluttering over the near fatal cut. But it was over. He had been right in his previous thoughts. That day the torture had ended.
A familiar feminine screech of his name brought him out of his depressing memories and back to the present. Although disappointed, he was somehow unsurprised at her appearance. She ran into the study where he sat, still lounging in the chair, her wild blonde hair bouncing behind her and her eyes flashing like twin blue flames, ready to burn him alive for his transgressions.
"Yes love?" He stood to greet her. "What can I do for you?"
Caroline walked forward, her heels clacking angrily. "Don't love me," she said jabbing a finger in his chest, "what are you doing with Elena?"
"Trust me," he said, "it's all for the best."
"Trust you? Trust you?" She shrieked, "You know I trusted you when you left me in Italy and told me everything was fine. Don't worry love," she said mimicking his accent," just nipping to Virginia for a bit to take care of something. No need to interrupt your vacation."
"And yet here you are." He smiled, placing a hand on her arm, but she shrugged him away.
"Seriously," she said raising her eyebrows, "if you don't start talking I'll make you regret it."
Klaus tilted his head toward her, amused but annoyed as always by her cheek. "Is that so?"
"Two words: Venus of Urbino."
He stalked toward her, his eyes narrowed, his tongue pressed against his teeth. "That's three words love."
"Well then," she said with a casual shrug, "I'll just be on my way."
Caroline twirled away but Klaus's hand shot out and grabbed her arm, pulling her back. He sat her down on the love seat and began explaining to her the details of the Hunter's death, Elena's involvement, and the necessity of keeping her best friend locked inside of a windowless prison. All the while, he tried to ignore the victorious twitch of her mouth and the reminder of the power this little baby vampire held over him.
"So we need to find a way to make the hallucination stop," Caroline said, shifting into her Miss-Fix-It attitude.
"Your guess is as good as mine," Klaus replied with a careless bob of his shoulder. He stood up and went to the bar to refresh his drink, deciding that the bottle was no longer necessary and a glass would be more appropriate now. Caroline was already scrolling through her phone contacts, putting the device to her ear.
"Well we can't let Elena sit in a room going insane for the next fifty years," she said to him before turning her attention to the phone, "hey Damon…yeah she's ok…no I think she should stay here, Klaus is right…well I don't really care what you think…I'd like to see you try…ok, call me back if Bonnie finds anything out." She hung up her phone and tossed it back into her purse. "Bonnie is doing some research with Damon, some professor guy that took over her Grams' old job knows a lot about this stuff."
Klaus seemed skeptical, raising his glass in a fake salute. "Best of luck to her."
"What?" Caroline teased, "Can't take the idea of someone knowing more than you?"
Klaus ignored her jab. Even though it wasn't quite safe yet, he was glad to have Caroline in his presence. After his little trip down memory lane, it was good to have her in the flesh…the real her.
Of course he forbade her from going into the room with Elena, not only for her safety, but to also regain a bit of power over her. He was the alpha here after all.
A few short hours, was all it took for Bonnie to find the cure for Elena's hallucinations. Klaus agreed to give up one of his hybrids so that Jeremy Gilbert could slay him and be birthed as the new Hunter. The rise of a new Hunter meant the end of the old one and thus and end to Elena's inner torment. Caroline drove her friend home, helping her clean herself up, and tuck into bed after the long day.
"It felt like a dream," she told her, "like it was happening to me, but not."
Elena told Caroline some of the things she had seen; Katherine, Stefan, Damon, her mom, and the things that they had told her. She said that while it was happening she didn't realize that it wasn't them saying all the awful things to her, but vocal projections of her own thoughts.
Caroline listened to her vent her fears and frustrations before she finally fell asleep. Damon came to relieve her of take care of Elena duty and Caroline headed back to the Mikaelson mansion.
She walked into the dark, chilly mansion and found Klaus in his bedroom. There was a small lamp on next to his bedside table; his eyes were flicking across the pages of a book he had propped up on his chest. She had spent the past few months with him, in Mystic Falls and all over the world, and yet it was still odd for her to see him doing normal things, like reading. Then again, it might look stranger to see him watching TV rather than reading. He would always be otherworldly to her, so much more refined and mysterious. Being with him in the present time, she had had to get to know him again. He was different than the villain she had first met and the medieval lord she had fallen for, this Klaus was an entirely new man. Sometimes good, sometimes bad.
"I'm home," she said, walking into the room and kicking off her shoes. Klaus smiled as she climbed onto the giant bed and stretched out next to him.
"You don't say," he smiled and leaned down to kiss her, the heat from his lips spreading to the rest of her. She wound her fingers through his blonde curls and he tossed his book aside, giving his full attention to her kiss.
"Elena's fine," she said when Klaus pulled away to cradle her in his arms. He stroked her hair, listening to the patterns of her breath. He didn't much care for the doppelganger's mental well-being, but he could tell there was something troubling the mind of the blonde in his arms.
"What is it, love?"
Caroline sighed. "I think we need to stay in Mystic Falls for a while. Elena needs my help," she slipped out of his arms so that she could sit up and face him, "this vampire thing isn't going so well for her and this whole crazy love triangle with Stefan and Damon isn't helping either. I think she needs me."
Klaus smirked. His Caroline. The savior of the cursed and the damned. "As you wish." He leaned forward and retrieved the book from the floor, placing it back on his nightstand.
Caroline got up and removed her jacket, making herself more comfortable. She was still on Italy time, and not exactly tired, but the day had been exhausting.
"Elena told me about her hallucinations," she said, "she told me about all the horrible things she heard from everyone she loved." Caroline clicked her teeth together nervously. She still found it hard to get Klaus to open up to her, unless he wanted to. It was a privilege, she knew, that he bestowed only upon her, so she tried not to take advantage, but she was a naturally nosy person. "What sort of things did you see?"
Klaus reached for the lamp and shut it off, turning back to her in the bed. "Henrik, my mother, my father, people I killed…you."
You. Caroline could feel the weight of the word pressing against her. She knew the immense amount of pain Klaus had been in all those centuries that he had thought her dead. It was a pain on eclipsed by the relief of having her back again.
"He's not going to let you go Caroline. If anything ever happens to you, if you ever want out…"
Because of the sire bond to Klaus, Tyler had been able to give her a small preview of what the pain was like. As if seeing it etched across Klaus's face hadn't been enough. It hadn't bothered her at first but as the days went on, it began to worry her more and more. Like the lying thing, back in Italy. She knew Klaus had done it to protect her, but he had lied to her still, and it involved her friends. Did he really expect her to just sit by and take it when her friends needed her? Even if it meant risking her life, did he really think she would be okay with that?
"What sort of things did I say," she wondered out loud, trying to move her own thoughts away from an angry place.
"It wasn't you," Klaus answered, "at the time I didn't realize that, but now I do." He kissed her forehead and she snuggled into his embrace.
It was similar to what Elena said. He obviously knew about the whole inner monologue thing, and wasn't up to sharing his personal insecurities with her. It hurt her a little bit, but she understood. She had her own fears about their relationship. Fears that she could never voice to him without hurting him, she was sure, and she never wanted that. With his arms around her, it was easy to feel safe, to not worry about those fears.
"Maybe one day you'll tell me," she murmured into his chest.
"Maybe," he said putting his chin over her head.
"I wonder what sort of visions I would have seen. If I had killed the Hunter." She felt Klaus tense beside her momentarily before relaxing again and continuing to stroke her head.
"Now you know why I wanted you far away," he replied, "so you wouldn't be killed or do the killing yourself."
Caroline was glad he couldn't see her face. Sometimes she hated his overprotective nature, but sometimes she was thankful for it. Trapped within his arms, she pressed a kiss to his chest.
Words unspoken hung between them. Promises of love and devotion that were yet to be committed stayed within the depth of their unbeating hearts. For all their differences-his darkness, her light-They were the same. There was nothing that one would not do for the other. They fell asleep together, intertwined, thinking about their love for one another and how nothing in the world, alive or dead or yet to be would ever come between them.
Just so you know:
-Min Hjarta, is a rough translation of Old Norse, it means My Heart.
-And if you look up Venus of Urbino, I think you guys can infer what meaning that might have to Klaus. ;)
Well, I hope you guys enjoyed this one shot and the switch up of canon wasn't confusing! I knew that a lot of writers out there would probably be writing different hallucination fics regarding Klaroline and I wanted to do something different and hopefully give you, my dear loyal readers, something that YOU ESPECIALLY would enjoy.
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