A/N : Here is the second part of the original whole chapter that I broke in two parts. I hope you will like it. See you again downstairs.
Disclaimer : I own nothing.
Warnings : M rated story that may occasionally include dark themes.
Many thanks to the amazing Anastasia Dreams for her beta work.
Songs used as inspiration for this chapter :
The Godfather theme song (Instrumental version of Speak softly love from The Godfather Soundtrack) & Wire to wire by Razorlight.
Chapter 5 : Out of the blue and into the black
You've been looking for someone you can trust
How do you love with a fate full of rust?
How do you love in a house without feelings?
How do you turn what the savage tame?
Esther stood behind the window in the conservatory and watched the unfolding scene.
Interesting she thought. Klaus almost seemed protective over the Salvatore girl. She skeptically noticed the way her son was looking at Caroline. He seemed positively enchanted and that was not an easy achievement for a man like her son, especially considering the fact that Klaus had only met Caroline, a Salvatore nonetheless.
At first she worried mostly about the girl. Mikael had pretty much ordered her to make sure that Klaus would treat Caroline right. At least physically.
Still she refrained from talking to her son about anything concerning his bride. She knew that if she were to pressure him in any way he would just shut her off. Klaus was not Mikael's biological son, but he was raised by him and had inherited the same pride and egotism her husband had. Women that had to deal with hard men like that had to learn that the direct approach was not a suitable solution. She had learnt that lesson a long time ago when she had entered the Mikaelson family through her marriage with Mikael. She has younger than Caroline and she learned to adapt. This lifestyle was not meant for meek and weak characters. So she grew strong, she shielded her heart and learned to love Mikael in time as she also learned to stay in the shadows. She knew how to inflict pain and how to influence others without having to step in the vanguard.
Men to their guns and women to their schemes.
In this case, instead of forcing Klaus to treat Caroline right, she should instruct her in how to deal with Klaus accordingly in order to appease him. Her youth made her more easily manageable.
She wasn't worried about her son harming Caroline in the way Mikael feared. He was capable of many things, but physically harming a girl like Caroline was not one of them. He could harm her mentally and emotionally of that she had no doubt. Because she knew his character and his ability to destroy everything he touched. She didn't believe that he was ready for the responsibility of a long-term commitment like the one that came with marriage, but this alliance with the Salvatores was a rare opportunity that could not be overlooked or passed by.
In retrospect and after seeing the interactions between Klaus and Caroline maybe she had been wrong in her primary assumptions. Perhaps that girl could achieve what others in her place before her had failed. Dealing with Klaus had always been a deadly game and Caroline has found herself in deep obscure waters but maybe there was hope for her yet. She had noticed the way Klaus looked at Caroline last night and Anna told her that they didn't spend the night together. No one knew that little detail, but it was her place to know everything that happened under this roof. The attraction was there on his part so the reasons he left their chambers last night could not be his unwillingness to spend the night with his wife. Klaus was showing a side with Caroline she didn't know he possessed. If what she was thinking was right then her son, instead of claiming what belonged to him, had decided to give more time to the girl to get to know and want him. Men and their male prides.
For now she was willing to bet that this marriage was unconsummated. A void marriage was not what had been arranged, though, and sooner or later her son would have to rectify this. Caroline was part of their family now; she had certain responsibilities and being her son's wife was her duty and privilege.
But Esther's real concerns laid elsewhere.
She knew that war was coming and she couldn't contain her son's wrath anymore. Not that she was ever that successful in that department anyway. Klaus had been gaining more and more power after Elijah's demise and he was on the verge of becoming unstoppable.
But, maybe this girl would be the solution. Aside from her inheritance, Caroline could prove to be an excellent asset in the days to come. She could positively influence her son. Maybe even reaching his heart. His infatuation for the girl might prove to be quite useful.
She moved away from the window with a grave expression.
Maybe Caroline was the answer she was searching for all this time.
For every man needed a weakness and Klaus right now, aside from Kol and Rebekah had none and that was making him impossible to handle. She had to find a way to maintain the balance and with Klaus gaining more control and power that was becoming an impossibility.
Her thoughts came to a halt when Mikael entered the room. He looked angry and tired, but most importantly defeated.
His next words along with his grave expression confirmed her suspicions.
"We need to talk."
The sun was casting its light over the sloshing waters. The slight breeze was filling the air outside as the sunglasses were hiding her eyes.
He had taken her to a café restaurant she had never been before and they were now sitting at a relatively secluded table.
She had barely seen this part of the city before. It was a territory rule. These parts belonged to the Mikaelsons. Unspoken boundaries. For most people these kind of notions would sound stupid, sometimes it seemed that way to her too, but in reality having these boundaries meant that there would be distance and a form of peace between the families. Many times in the past Damon would pass the forbidden borders and would try to start a fight and Stefan would always follow in order to save and prevent their hotheaded brother from doing something stupid. Not her though. She was never allowed to even think of coming to places that wouldn't be safe. Not that she hadn't tried, but she would always fail since she had people following her every step. In the past there was a time that she would provoke the people that followed her and sometimes she would even trick them and she would escape them for a few hours. Those hours had made her feel happy and free at least until her brothers came and dragged her back.
It didn't matter anymore. Now that she was married to Klaus theoretically she could go anywhere she wanted, but she seriously doubted that this was true. She was still guarded and she was certain that now it would be worse than before.
She kept looking outside the window realizing that ever since she had woken up in this dreaded reality all her thoughts have been negative and that this new depressed person wasn't her, but she couldn't stop herself. She supposed that she needed to learn how to adjust.
She took a deep breath and looked at the river.
Even she had to admit that the view was spectacular, but the company was definitely not allowing her to enjoy the sight. Now that some time has passed she had regained common sense and raised her walls again. She couldn't, she wouldn't, allow to herself to fall under the spell of Klaus Mikaelson. She had to admit that while he was an attractive man –and maybe she did feel some sort of unexplained attraction towards him– it wasn't enough. What she really felt for him and for this whole mess she had found herself in was destructive. She hated him. Him and both of their families.
After their moment in the gardens his eyes were constantly trained on her and she was feeling uncomfortable. It was like being under a microscope.
While he was driving them here she had her head turned towards her window. He was driving fast and everything seemed to move in a blur, but the silence was welcome. Even though from times to times she could feel his piercing gaze under his shades and she would shift in her sit.
She felt uncomfortable in his presence. All she could think after the way they had gotten closer at the gardens was how he had touched her last night and declared that she belonged to him before leaving her alone. A part of her was grateful because she knew that the outcome could have been completely different. Another place, another woman maybe and the night wouldn't have turned out the way it did. She could still feel him smelling her hair and after that strange moment she had lost all thought.
In the days before the wedding she had imagined how that moment would be between them and all she could think was that in the end she would end up as a helpless rape victim with no chances of getting out of that situation for the rest of her life.
But he hadn't hurt her. She still detested the fact that she was married to him and she believed now more than ever that he was more dangerous than she had originally thought. He was buying his time and lulling her into a false sense of security and even though she knew better she couldn't help but feel relieved.
She was grateful that he had intervened before his mother and his sister tried to make her feel worse and even though she wouldn't tell him this she was thankful that he had taken her out and away from that house and his family even if the price was that she had to spend more time with him. It kind of scared her that now she had to learn how to spend time with him, but she had no other options.
At least in a very weird way he had protected her. She wasn't deluding herself, though. She couldn't essentially rely on him for her protection.
He had told her to choose her poison and he was right. That was what he was. Poison. Lethal and fatal. No matter what her choice was in the end she would have to deal with the serpent's venom. And she was afraid that it would leave her completely paralyzed and completely at his mercy. And it was common knowledge that Klaus had no mercy.
During the drive she knew that there were at least two more cars following them. Part of his security detail. But in the confined space of his Maserati she was left alone with just him. She could see his reflection in her window glass. His stubble and the black shades that covered his eyes. His leather jacket that stretched over his arms with his every movement. And all she could think was that if someone were to tell her only some days before that Klaus Mikaelson would be her lawful husband and she would be in his car driving away to have…breakfast with him she would have laughed because it would be one of the worst most tasteless joke she could imagine and now here she was.
Now that they were sitting opposite to each other at their table all she was trying to do was stay calm and collected as she watched some boats were rocking in the water. The smell of her coffee in front of her was soothing and she was trying to concentrate on that. This was definitely one messed up situation and she had to deal with it the best way possible. Which meant that she had to learn how to deal with Klaus Mikaelson. She would be damned if she were to let him and his stupid gazes intimidate and seduce her so easily.
"What is on your mind, sweetheart?" he asked conversationally.
His voice interrupted her thoughts and she looked at him for a moment before she looked at the view of the river that was expanding outside the crystal glass of the large window walls.
"That this is a nice view," she told him with no emotion in her voice.
He smiled amused and his smile turned into a smirk. The girl he had met in the gardens with his sister had now completely vanished. She had armored herself against him completely.
"I agree it is," he said as his eyes roved over her form taking in every last detail with appreciation.
"Yeah," she agreed absentmindedly without looking at him.
"And now that we have this settled how about you tell me what is really on your mind Caroline?" he asked, his voice sounding amused.
She straightened her back and pressed her lips together. Having a chitchat with him was really going to mess with her nerves even more and she was already on edge.
He sighed and took a sip from his coffee. He had to approach her. He had to win her over. She was his wife and he understood by her disposition that she was not an easy person. He wanted to laugh at the idea that only days before he had thought that he would be married to a sweet, easy going, weak person. She most certainly was not that easy going and most definitely not weak.
He could try charming her, but something kept telling him that this was not the right way to go things with her. Not that he wouldn't try that too, but she seemed to detest him with all her being. Her body language indicated this. While he might be able to assert influence over her and she did seem attracted to him it was not enough. Truth was that he was not used to being in the presence of women that looked like they wanted to be anywhere else than near him.
Then again last night as he was opening the back of her wedding dress he had also sensed that a part of her desired him as much as he wanted her. For a few moments her inhibitions were gone. And he couldn't shake that moment from his memory; the way she had shivered in his hands. It was at that moment that he realized that he didn't want her to just pretend to like him just when others were around. He wanted more.
She seemed to be an enchanting mix of fire and ice and he couldn't wait to expose the searing flame under the cold exterior.
Caroline was definitely a challenge. A very…very beautiful challenge.
He had to go slow with her. He had to remind himself that she was dragged into this marriage and she was still so very young. And for some unexplained reason he didn't want to intimidate her into this.
He would have to play nice. He had time on his side for now. All he had to do was keep her on his side. Cut her ties with the Salvatores, not even mentioning them to her, slowly approach her while secluding her from those that she could rely on. His family was not at her side and he could use that to his advantage. She would come to appreciate the fact that the only contact in her life and in the family that could provide her with some sort of repose and security was him and only him. He had to be patient, one step at the time and dedicate time to her. Usually, a plan like that would be a dreadful chore for him, but for her he could certainly do that, even enjoy it.
"Ok love, I understand that we might have started on the wrong foot here, but we could at least try to start talking to each other, I don't know…getting to know each other better?" he said with his most sincere tone.
A tone that he had practiced and perfected through the years. Looking sincere was part of the game most of the time even when his sinister nature was crawling behind the nice mask.
He failed to mention that he wanted for them to look friendly in front of all others too. He didn't want to force her to act like that, but as long as she kept herself in check they would be okay. She would give in to him eventually. All women did.
She took her sunglasses off and her eyes locked with his. The emerald swirl of defiance that he saw there enticed him even more.
"What more is there to know?" she asked coldly.
"We are married love, surely you and I can find some common ground don't you think?" he gently proposed.
"We already have a common ground," she said and gritted her teeth. She was trying to sound detached, but anger was flashing through her.
"Do we now?" he asked raising his eyebrow, "please do tell," he challenged her.
She stared at him for a moment in a way he couldn't read. His eyes slipped to her lips before he looked at her eyes again.
She looked at him serious and he was mesmerized at the sight.
The sun from the glass window was reflecting off her hair that now looked like a burning halo around her beautiful features and the aquamarine glow in her eyes seemed to compete with that shine.
But it was her voice that was contradicting the image. Strong, unwavering, cold. And for the first time he felt that he was sitting not against Caroline, but against a Salvatore.
"Well the way I see it this marriage is a business arrangement and each part gains something that it wants," she said and looked at him frowning slightly for a moment before continuing, "in this case my brothers and you are gaining an alliance, protection and you get to expand your interests and all that without shedding a drop of blood or losing profit, very much a win win situation, if you ask me," she said ironically as she drank some of her coffee.
He leaned into his chair and his eyes locked with her fiery gaze. He came to the realization that his first assessments of her were indeed completely wrong. She definitely was not the weak superficial little girl he originally believed her to be. He was impressed and that didn't happen often. She had a pride that could compete his own. Stubborn little thing.
Last night she impressed him with her strong attitude and her pride and right now she was impressing him even more. She despised him and she was right to feel like that. She was forced into this marriage against her will. But she was also very smart and she had an edge that intrigued him. Obviously she was raised in a family that obeyed the same rules his own had. She was neither naïve nor stupid; he could give her that.
"Very well then. And since we covered what it is that I am gaining, what about you?" he asked her.
She looked at him like she didn't understand his question, but he could tell that she was just buying her time for she knew that he was going to ask something she wasn't going to like.
He indulged her.
"You said that we have common ground, so what is it that you are gaining from our little arrangement?" His voice sounded amused, but it had a cold sadistic edge to it.
She looked at him straight in the eye and he caught his breath. There was murder in her eyes.
He smirked. Now that was very interesting! Last night he could see light shining through her, today he could also see an alluring darkness. Interesting contradiction.
"My family is very important to me, their gain is mine too," she said, her tone not wavering.
"Is that it or you are just collateral damage?" he asked her softly.
"And if I am what do you care?" she asked him with a steely tone.
"I care, love, because now your family is me," he said as a matter of fact.
She laughed at that and he couldn't help but feel mesmerized by that lyrical sound that filled his ears and awakened a new desire in him.
"Make no mistake, Klaus, you and I might be married, but family we will never be. It was not part of the arrangement. You bought a bride with the right last name and nothing more," she said venomously.
"Sweetheart… make no mistake," he copied her tone, "the moment you walked to that altar you gave yourself to me and to my family. You belong to us now," he said ominously and his eyes sparked as he saw her façade crumble for a moment.
He could tell that she was trying to act collected around him, but he marveled at how her eyes momentarily brightened with a look of undiluted fear.
She was an in impossible situation. He knew his reputation and even more when it came to the Salvatores so when he saw her bracing herself against him again he couldn't help but admire her.
If she weren't his wife he would be tempted to teach her, to train her, to mold her into something else. Her innocence could be shaped into a deadly weapon. She could be transformed into a ruthless player. But, alas, he had other plans for her. Plans that he would most certainly enjoy.
Her voice was steady when she answered.
"Maybe so. But family is more than just a name. You and I both know that family is above all, it has ties, it means loyalty and mine is not swayed by arrangements and forced rules."
He smirked at that. A dangerous glint into his eyes.
"And what would a man have to do in order to gain your…loyalty and your trust Caroline?" his voice was soft as silk.
She raised her eyes so she could look directly into his. It was a curiously intimate moment of truth between them.
"Simple, he would have to be everything you are not…"
Everything stood still between them. Not even a hint of movement.
For a reason he couldn't explain her honesty pained him. He didn't know her. They literally were two strangers that happened to be married. His interests were fulfilled and she was a beautiful woman that he should just want to his bed and nothing more. He knew that she was right, loyalty, trust and them becoming something more was never part of the deal nor was something that he thought he would ever want. And yet her words caused an ache in his heart he couldn't understand.
For some reason he realized that he wanted her loyalty and her devotion even if he knew that he would never reciprocate them. That never stopped him before and it wouldn't now. He always took what he wanted without giving anything back. This was who he was and Caroline would have to come to terms with that and surrender herself and her idealistic sense of loyalty to him even if he would have to force her to do so.
He bent over the table and took her hand in his and brought it to his lips. She tried to pull it away, but he didn't let her. He squeezed it firmly as a warning and his thumb caressed the soft skin of her wrist warming it and sending bolts of electricity through both of them.
"We shall see sweetheart, we shall see…"
He was looking at the sun setting while he was slowly drinking his tea on his balcony. The view of the ocean was spectacular, especially now. Unfortunately, though beautiful sunsets and panoramic views were not enough to make him forget.
He checked his clock. Right now it should be morning in Chicago he thought.
At the table next to him was the yesterday's edition of the Chicago Tribune.
His eyes fixed on to the black and white photos. The one was the picture of the now eldest son of the Mikaelson family and the other was of the beautiful Salvatore girl.
He remembered her actually. He had seen her next to Stefan at an event. She was much younger back then. She was just a child. She was still young, but now she was also a grown up woman. A married woman.
Niklaus was married. His wedding with Caroline Salvatore was on the front page.
A Mikaelson son married with one of the heirs of the Salvatore mafia family.
He breathed deeply. He really hoped Niklaus knew what he was doing. For his sake he hoped he did. If not this would end up badly. Not just for him, but also for the girl. It was common knowledge after all that the last marriage in the Mikaelson family had ended in blood. The brides in the Mikaelson family tended to leave their caged walls only in caskets.
He just hoped that history wouldn't repeat itself.
He was taking her back to the mansion and she felt uneasy. It felt like he was taking her back to her cell, but there was nothing she could do.
Their little getaway was enlightening.
She came to understand that Klaus was more dangerous than he looked. He was patient with her and that worried her more. He seemed to be ready to crush her defenses at any given moment and it seemed that he was going to enjoy doing that.
"We shall see sweetheart, we shall see…"
His words formed a promise and she came to realize that she had acted stupidly around him. It was obvious that Klaus was one of those men that liked a challenge and she had just offered one to him.
She didn't want to provoke him more and she wished that she could restrain herself more in his presence, but she also didn't know if she could do that. She didn't know why but when she was around him all she wanted was to show him no weakness. All she felt was anger and a fire that was consuming her whole. She wanted to react and make sure that his fake consideration for her well being wasn't going to trap her into his web even more than she already was. For she was certain that having any kind of intimate meaningful relationship with Klaus Mikaelson would be her own undoing.
She knew that she was his wife and sooner or later he would take her body, but that was all she was going to give. Her mind, her thoughts and her heart were going to stay locked away. She was so afraid that she was going to lose her soul, but there was no way out and since she was trapped in this forced married she was going to make sure that she wasn't going to make his life that easy either. She just had to learn how to keep him at a relative distance.
She looked at him momentarily as he was driving his car with confidence and then she looked outside her window again biting her lip ignoring the fact that he was also casting gazes at her. Vivid colors swept across the sky and she felt like she was going to break into a thousand pieces. After their little honest time in the café his penetrating gaze was always on her, taking in every detail.
Somehow her answers seemed to intrigue him and not anger him and that scared her even more.
After that he had tried talking to her about general subjects. He told her that later today he was going to give her a tour around the house and that she shouldn't be afraid to ask anything of him. He turned gentle and kind.
It was obvious that he wanted her to trust him, but the stark possessiveness that clouded his gaze when he looked at her was making her skin turn ice-cold and hot in the same moment. It was like his eyes were marking her as his even more than the golden band on her finger. And for a reason she couldn't understand there were moments that she couldn't look away from his dark eyes.
She soon came to understand that Klaus could turn his reactions into weapons. He could be charming and entice her into conversations and make her forget herself for some moments. She found herself even smiling against her will. He could be seductive and tempting. And he could target those weapons of his against her and make her feel powerless.
It was at that moment that she realized that Klaus was everything that Matt wasn't and that was almost her breaking point.
After that at every passing moment her heart was getting fuller with a bitterness she didn't know she could feel. And an eerie emptiness was surrounding her mind and making her numb. Klaus had asked her what it was that she was gaining from their arrangement.
She had lied, but it was simple really. She had made sure that the man she truly loved would stay safe away from all this mess. That was the price she had to pay. She wasn't one of those girls that liked to sacrifice themselves and she hated being the damsel in distress, but this was real. Damon wouldn't hesitate. He would kill Matt in the blink of an eye and then what would she do? She couldn't stand the idea of being responsible for his death. She should have known better. She should have never let Matt get close to her in the first place. She knew who her family was, but she had foolishly believed that she could make a new start with him away from this world. And now being married to Klaus was a death sentence for her, but at least Matt had avoided the one that Damon was ready to deal out on him.
Klaus should never learn anything about Matt. He should never know that Matt even exists. She didn't know what he would do and she didn't want to find out either. She would never mention Matt to him. Now that she had complied Damon had no reason to hurt him and she was grateful for that at least. But her relationship with Matt had to remain a secret.
She felt her eyes burning. She had to come to terms that there was no relationship with Matt and her anymore. She wasn't going to see him again. She wasn't going to be with him ever again. Would he hate her for leaving him like that?
And she also realized that from the moment she married Klaus she hadn't thought about Matt that much. She had thought of him as an idea of a future she would never have, but she hadn't thought about him as a real person that was out there still waiting for her to return to him. It was like only in few hours they were erasing not only his existence, but also his memory and his importance from her.
She felt like she couldn't breathe and she hadn't realized that the car had stopped moving and that they were back at Klaus's house. At her house.
At her house…this was her house now. She had to live here from now and on. Forever.
It all became too much. The haze she was floating in the last days and especially the last hours began rapidly dismantling. In 24 hours her life had changed, she was living with the Mikaelsons, she was married to one of them. The worse of them. There was no way out. She couldn't return to her college. She couldn't even go back to her home. She was never going to see Matt again. She was never going to be loved or feel safe again. She couldn't even see Bonnie. Kol and Rebekah hated her. Her father was dead. Stefan and Damon sold her out. Mikael wanted her to be his son's broodmare. She had no one to protect her. And Klaus was her world. He would be her only constant. She would have to be with him, to be at his side. She was his wife.
God…she was his wife! The stark reality finally started to settle in for good and she panicked.
She started trembling and a moan escaped her lips.
She jolted as she felt Klaus's hand gently touching hers.
"Are you alright, love?" he asked her while his eyes searched hers.
His voice seemed full of concern and she jerked her hand away from his as if he had burned her.
His eyes flashed with anger for a moment, but as he saw her teary eyes he sighed. Her face was white as a sheet and she was trembling.
It was the first time that he had seen such raw pain in her eyes and he realized that he didn't like it. Not at all.
As he tried reaching for her again she moved abruptly away from him like he was her worse enemy which in her mind he most probably was.
"I am fine!" she spat and got out of the car before he could stop her. She slammed her door behind her causing the men from the security, including one of Mikael's confidents, to look directly at them and then she started hurriedly walking angrily away from the car.
He cursed and went out of the car and threw his keys at one of the guards. He could take care of his car because he needed to take care of his little wife.
Especially since he knew that everything in this house was monitored and the last thing he wanted was Caroline to make him look weak to his employees and more importantly to his family. To Mikael. Even more so today.
If she were going to have such outbursts without provocation it would be only a matter of time before she wouldn't restrain herself in front of others too. And in this situation that they had found themselves in everything was about the picture. Everything was about control and he was not going to relinquish it. Especially not to a stubborn college girl with fiery eyes and such defiant behavior. They had been walking on eggshells all morning going back and forth between unfamiliar formalities and suppressed sentiments both of attraction and aversion, but obviously his civility wasn't so well received from the princess.
So be it then.
Before she could reach the main entrance he reached over her and grabbed her by her upper arm and dragged her along at the opposite direction from where she was headed.
His grip was unbreakable, but that didn't stop Caroline from trying to escape from his hold.
"What are you doing?" she yelled at him, but he didn't let go of her arm as he gave her a stern look.
"I was trying to go easy on you, but it is obvious that it is time to make some things clear, sweetheart," he said and even he couldn't understand the anger he was suddenly feeling. All he knew was that her pain shouldn't be affecting him so. And yet it did and that made him feel like he wanted to destroy everything around him, everything except her. And that infuriated him even more.
But the problem was that Caroline wasn't just his wife anymore. She was also part of his family and he couldn't tolerate her obstinacy in this house. Not around his family.
The reason he took her outside today was to make sure that they could learn to be civil to each other. To make her trust him somewhat and for her to be able to feel more comfortable in his presence. He didn't want to simply lock her in or order her to obey him and he had tried to refrain from going down that path, but she had to learn her place. Better now that they were at the beginning of their relationship.
But at each step he was taking he was getting angrier.
Damn him and his sudden morality that suddenly stemmed out of nowhere! He had treated her like a gentleman, he had even let her slip out of his hands the night before and she dared defy him like this?
If his gentle side was not going to do the trick then maybe he would have to get the message through to her. She was too headstrong for her own good anyway.
He kept tugging her forward, ignoring her protests and no matter how much she resisted he wasn't letting her go.
Her strength was not equal to his and he felt like he was carrying a beautiful doll in his hands. He was trying not to hurt her –and that increased his anger– but his hold was unwavering.
He kept striding until they were headed towards the gardens and when she finally stopped resisting his hold became gentler -although still unyielding- until they reached the maze behind the trees where he abruptly pushed her into the leafy wall.
Her golden locks fell around her face as her eyes burned with anger and a hint of fear.
He had to admit that she was a vision and that her anger was making her look more desirable. Her fiery side and the fear and loathing that her eyes signaled were turning him on.
He didn't exactly like the fear he saw in those beautiful eyes of hers but it was necessary and he could use it to his advantage.
She tried to move away, but he held her in place by her upper arms.
She struggled against him for a moment before her eyes narrowed and she huffed indignantly.
"Why did you bring me here?"
He smirked at how she was trying to make her voice sound confident and yet failing.
"I think that you have formed the wrong impression of me, love." he said quietly. His soft tone a warning.
"I seriously couldn't care less for what you think!" she said, but she unwillingly settled further into the wall of the maze. The leafy blades poking at her body.
And then she got mad at the fact that his intimidation tactics seemed to be working on her. She wasn't going to stand there and allow him to treat her like this.
She tried to move past him again, but he placed a firm hand on her shoulder and pushed her back forcibly. He wasn't hurting her and yet she realized that he wasn't going to let her go. He was standing over her, his cobalt colored eyes fixed on hers. For a moment the intensity of his gaze cut off her breathing. How he was doing this to her was beyond her comprehension.
She took a deep breath and willed herself to stand still. The flames in his eyes turned her cold. She didn't like what was reflected there. Something dark, hot, dangerous.
"That is a big mistake on your part Caroline and quite foolish for a smart woman of your caliber," he said and even though part of his words complimented her she couldn't help but shiver as she took in his fathomless expression.
His hand left her shoulder and touched the green soft wall next to her head. He came closer. So close that she could feel his breath caressing her features.
His other hand travelled slowly from her waist up until he caught her chin in firm fingers. A strange sensation filled her as color crept into her cheeks. She felt a warmth that made her feel like she was falling into a void filled with searing heat.
For a moment they stared at each other. It seemed timeless. A feeling so real that she felt like she was drowning more than before.
His thumb brushed against her cheek and she shuddered as it slowly moved closer to the edge of her lips.
He seemed mesmerized for a moment and even though she knew that she was trapped, helpless against him for some reason this sinister moment reflected a sense of seduction and not of abuse. It confused her. It hypnotized her and made her realize that even though she could be trapped like this for some reason her heart kept beating faster and faster.
"What more do you want?" she asked losing her resistance. Her voice barely a whisper. The accusation in her voice evident. He had taken her vows on the altar. He had branded her with his wedding ring. He had taken her freedom away and now he was stealing her last defenses. She was growing weaker.
His eyes traveled her length slowly and his boldness caused butterflies to flutter inside her stomach. He let go of her face and his gaze turned thoughtful.
He leaned forward and his hand wrapped around some stray, golden locks pushing them behind her neck as his head dived closer to her ear. She pressed her lips together as he invaded her senses. She couldn't escape him now. And this unknown danger that was challenging her mind and heart was threatening to swallow her whole.
"I want everything you have to give, all of you," his silken voice felt like a shroud of smoke. It was trapping her into a web of desire. Worse was the fear she felt of what his promise meant.
"Until there is nothing left," she said with despair and her eyes burned with unshed tears as she clung at him for support.
His strong hands held her and brought her even closer than before.
"Until you desire nothing else," he vowed and she felt fear creeping into her heart. He would change her. He would mold her into something else that he could control. She would lose her mind, her thoughts. Her heart. She wouldn't be herself anymore. She would be his.
She inhaled deeply as his forehead touched hers and his eyes bored into the green color of hers. She could only hope that her thoughts and her confusion were not transparent to him.
She steeled herself with a strength she didn't know she possessed and even though her body seemed to be out of her control she managed to put her hands on his sternum and to push him away. She was surprised at the fact that she had to use all her will power in order to do something that she should have been able to do easily and with no thought.
He allowed her to push him away and for just a split second she thought she saw him struggling to find his breath too.
"This will never happen," she declared to him and pressed her lips together. She had to snap out of this. Whatever this was. She was succumbing to a seduction that would destroy her. She couldn't allow it.
Then the atmosphere changed. His whole posture changed. Everything around her turned cold.
Now he was smiling at her. The only thing was that now she was staring at the man she had heard him to be. At the man that was more of a predator than a man. She tried to push her fear away, but she couldn't stop the shivers that went down her spine like ice cubes. She was feeling extremely uncomfortable knowing that he could detect her fear and that it probably excited him more.
He moved closer to her. One step away. Enough to cause electricity to sparkle again between them.
"I am a patient man, sweetheart, and I always take what I want, never forget that."
His voice was a weapon and she could not understand how he could turn a warning, that seemed more of a threat to her, into something so sinister and yet at the same moment into something tempting. An invitation into something that was beyond her comprehension.
"Not with me Klaus," she sternly told him. She had to get her fighting mood back now!
But then he suddenly reached for her, ensnaring her into a firm grip and brought her closer. She had to put her hands on his chest if she didn't want her body to collide with his. Her eyes grew big as he lowered his face and his lips descended really close to hers. He held her more possessively.
"I will have you Caroline," he whispered. His mouth just a centimeter away from her own. Fever. This is what she was feeling. His words terrified her.
She refused to believe this even though she knew that she was trapped. She turned her head to the side refusing to look at him.
He then released her and she wanted to scream with frustration. Why was her body betraying her so?
"In the mean time I need you to realize that I already own you and you should learn to act accordingly." His tone was cold, but she stubbornly shook her head.
"Remember that my leniency has its limitations," he said clearly exasperated with her defiance.
She looked at him and for a moment they just stared at each other. A battle of wills. His eyes were almost hypnotic and she felt a strange sensation. She wanted to agree with him. It was almost like she was giving in and the feeling was so real that it shook her to her core.
She then rolled her eyes. More for herself than him. Everything was happening too fast. She was confused, but one thing had become clear to her. Klaus and his threats and seduction meant nothing to her. Nothing! She was not going to lose her resistance just because he commanded her to do so.
She locked her gaze with his. This time she had to stop herself from lashing out. He was playing with her and she was allowing him to do it. She was still a Salvatore for God's sake. Not a lost little girl he could intimidate into behaving.
She saw that he immediately recognized the change in her attitude and she saw his azure eyes blazing. His anger flaring like a hot current.
She saw his features contorting into something even more menacing. She had a Mikaelson standing against her now. A vindictive enemy that wouldn't hesitate to hurt her if he thought necessary.
So be it. She didn't owe him anything. She wasn't going to bow down to him.
"I have been gentle with you so far, but I have already warned you that you should tread carefully." His tone was intimidating.
She crossed her hands over her chest in a hostile manner.
"Which means what exactly?" she challenged him not caring for the consequences. If he wanted a war then he would have one.
"It means that when we are in public or anywhere near a third person, no matter what, you will behave yourself. I don't care what you feel or what you think, but you will treat me with respect." He commanded her.
She gritted her teeth and looked at him with contempt.
"Respect is not something you can force," she said feeling her own anger rising.
"You will obey me on this Caroline because I will not tolerate any more outbursts like the one you had before," he told her in a calm voice. The threat was clear, though.
She huffed in anger.
"Which means that you want me to act like your obedient little puppet. Is that it?" she said staring at him with absolute distaste.
He then got closer to her again and caught one of her stray locks in his hands.
"Why not love, you might even enjoy the way I will pull your strings," he said as he played with her hair.
She swatted his hand away.
"You are despicable," she spat at him and he grabbed her by her upper arms and yanked her close to him again.
"I am your husband and you will do as I say if you don't wish to suffer the consequences, and trust me you don't, I am making myself clear?" Klaus snarled as she struggled against his hold.
She pushed him away with all her strength and she almost lost her balance when he abruptly let her go.
"Crystal!" she said with a fierce look on her face, "Now let me make myself clear to you. You can do whatever you wish, but I am not afraid of you," she provoked him.
For a moment he stared at her amazed. The bitterness in her voice and the tangled emotions he saw into her eyes made his anger dissipate.
She was more beautiful than ever. The flaming color on her cheeks and the way her eyes sparkled made him lose his rage immediately. She looked so young and ethereal. Her skin was so soft and tempting and he couldn't understand how in less than a day she had managed to get under his skin. Her defiance enraged and challenged him.
Her independence attracted him. She said that she wasn't afraid and yet he could tell that part of her was. Afraid of him and of her own reactions. There was an attraction between them. One he knew she would try to deny no matter what.
"You should be afraid, Caroline," he told her. His tone concealing the double meaning of his words. He had to make sure she would learn to obey him. At least in public. But he also couldn't deny that he enjoyed the way she was fighting him. It was quite refreshing.
He saw the way her shoulders tensed and her resolute gaze.
"I don't and do you know why?" she challenged him in a way that almost made his eyes sparkle with laughter. She was really cute.
"Do tell sweetheart," he prompted her. Dark mirth in his voice.
"Because as you said I am your wife and as such you will treat me with respect because make no mistake when I say that I am neither weak or stupid; you married me and you depend on me for this little alliance of yours to work. You need to stay on the good side of my brothers don't you Klaus?" she said as determination shone in her eyes.
He felt wonder about the woman standing in front of him now. She was not backing down. She was more of a challenge. She was placed into an impossible situation and she was not surrendering. If anything she was ready to fight until the end. He hadn't met anyone like her before.
She had impressed him so far. Now she was also gaining his respect.
He took a step towards her and admired her for not backing away.
"Do you really believe that they can help you Caroline?" he asked her with a gentle tone.
Her gaze filled with something akin to pain. She averted her eyes and then she was the one to step closer to him.
She locked her gaze with his.
"I don't need them too. But if this is how this marriage is going to be then so be it. You want a submissive wife to follow your commands in public? Fine, but you will have nothing more from me, not ever!" she said as her tone was painted with disappointment and distaste.
It made him feel uncertain for the first time in a long time. He didn't know why he didn't like the way she was looking at him right now, but he didn't. She was agreeing to do what he asked from her and yet he didn't feel like he had won. Instead he felt like he had lost something and he didn't know what it was.
"I thought you were not willing to give me anything more sweetheart, not of your own volition anyway," he said and tried to concentrate. He couldn't allow her to make him weak.
"Yes, and now I know how right I was!" she accused him.
He took a deep breath and stepped away from her. He had to gain his control back.
"We shall see, love, for now, though, since we have come into an agreement I have to point out something else too," he said, his voice steady.
She huffed and he felt the muscles in his jaw clenching. This woman could be so infuriating.
He pointed with his hand to the house that was meters away from the gardens they were in.
"This whole place is monitored. Security and surveillance cameras. I am sure that you are accustomed with such security measures from your own house?" he inquired.
"Your point?" she tiredly asked him.
"My point is that we are always going to be watched. So no matter what, when you are not in our room you will have to act like the willing and doted wife I know you can be." He smugly said to her and she cringed.
He went closer and placed his hands on her slender waist. As he had thought she immediately tried to push his hands away and he saw her flinch when his fingers dug into her flesh.
"And most importantly act like a newlywed. You know, sweet, caring, loving… not swaying away from my touch" he said and was unable to stop his hand from sliding over her body and eventually framing her delicate cheek.
He felt her body stilling under his touch. The fear and innocence in her eyes made his blood run wild inside his veins. The moment passed and she pushed his hands away from her body. Her look showing him that his touch was offensive.
"Why should I do that here? Everyone knows the truth! Why do you care?" she snapped at him.
"Believe it or not this is for your own good," he finally said to her honestly.
"Yeah, right," she exclaimed.
He looked at her intently.
"Sweetheart, you may not realize it right now, but you will need my protection. Your life depends on it. Soon you will see that I am the only one you can rely on if you want to survive this," he warned her.
Soon she would have to come to terms with it. He was the only one she had anymore. Not Mikael, not her brothers not anyone else. She was his and he would take care of her. But she had to understand that he was the only one she could count on.
He tried to ignore the fact that he craved for her loyalty above all. It was an unsettling feeling. He had to ignore it. She was just a woman after all. One that belonged to him.
His eyes travelled over her body taking in every sensual detail.
"Besides pretending to be attracted to me shouldn't be that hard, after all moments before you were not that disagreeable," he said smugly as he remembered the way she had trembled when he had corned her on the wall of the maze.
She looked at him with distain like she was about to attack him at any moment.
"Go to hell, Klaus." She yelled at him and tried to move past him.
He forcefully stepped in front of her blocking her way.
"Your running days are over Caroline!" he hissed at her as his hand wrapped around her wrist.
"Let me go!" she shouted at him as she struggled to get her hand away from him.
"You will do as I say!" he yelled "This is how it works, love, where I go you follow not the other way around," he emphasized and enjoyed the way she gasped. Her breathing was erratic as she still tried to get out of his unrelenting grip.
And yet the only thing he could think of was to make sure that his hold wouldn't be painful on her.
"There is no one around right now so let me go!" she cried out.
"I have already told you that this whole place is watched, have I not?" he asked her as he enjoyed their close proximity and the way her scent was circling him. He wanted to keep her near him like this longer.
"And I already have told you that I am not stupid," she seethed "If you brought me here to pass out your commands it is because this must be one of the few places here that is not monitored. So get your hands of me. Now!" she ordered him.
He smirked. She was definitely more than just a pretty face.
Klaus raised his eyebrow in amusement and let her go. He held his hands up in a mocking surrender and enjoyed the way she looked at him with anger.
He laughed at the way she all but screamed in rage.
"I think you need to get some rest, sweetheart. You seem quite spent," he teased her satisfied. The innuendo in his tone making her blush even more and this time not just from anger.
He extended his hand for her to take in order to take her back to the mansion. It was the gentleman's way after all was it not?
She indignantly ignored it and angrily walked past him. She didn't even spare him another glance.
He smiled at that knowing that no one could see him. The first genuine real smile he had in a very long time.
He then followed her and in the back of his mind he realized that he was already breaking his rules. She should be following him, but somehow he didn't care. Just this once he was feeling content and satisfied. Caroline was an interesting woman. A spitfire. And the more time he spent with her the more intrigued he was becoming. So he followed close, enjoying the sexy view her body was offering as she angrily strode towards his house. Where she now belonged.
It was strange, but as she entered the house again, this time with Klaus next to her, she was feeling more uncertain than she had the night before. She still couldn't shake away all the feelings she felt running through her in the gardens. Everything that had happened had left her a mess. She couldn't control her emotions anymore. This was her own hell. She wasn't prepared to live like this and she didn't want to have to deal with Klaus anymore. The man was insufferable, unbearable, irritating, and outrageous. He was impossible. She couldn't stand him!
And his house was even worse! She didn't want to live here.
Now that it was day everything seemed even more threatening to her. She didn't dare spare Klaus even a glance. His form was at her side, looming over her and she just wanted to run away. No matter what she felt she wasn't going to allow to herself to show any signs of weakness. Enough was enough. Or at least this is what she kept saying to herself. She did know for certain that she wanted to get back at him for all his games and the way he treated her.
He wanted a docile puppet by his side. Yeah right!
She didn't know if she could give him that. What she did know was that now that she was in the spider trap she had to find a way to survive. To survive him and his whole family.
She took a closer look at the entrance of the mansion and like last night she was really surprised to see that the house seemed bigger on the inside than the outside. She snickered internally. What a fine environment for someone to grow up in! This house reflected its owners in a way. Cold and emotionless. If houses had souls this one would definitely have many dark secrets and a black heart to reveal.
Klaus intertwined his hand with hers and she almost jumped. She was so lost in her thoughts that she didn't see an old man approaching them. She remembered him from last night. He was their butler. Seriously though! Who had a butler these days? She scoffed and tried to draw her hand back, but Klaus didn't allow it. He gently squeezed her hand as he discretely warned her with his gaze.
After all he has already ordered her to…behave. If she had to be honest even though she would rather hit him on the head with a heavy object than "behave" she was also very tired. Too tired to keep doing this. She sighed knowing that this was only day one and she tried to relax.
"Mr. Mikaelson, Mrs. Mikaelson," the butler said and slightly bowed in respect.
That caused Caroline to roll her eyes and Klaus to smirk at her reaction.
"Yes, George," Klaus said, mirth in his voice.
"First of all congratulations for your wedding," the man said.
Caroline couldn't stop the sound of ironic laughter that left her throat and winced as Klaus's hand tightened around her own. She forced herself to smile at the man in front of them even as at the same time she wanted to scream as she saw Klaus mocking gaze.
"Why thank you, George, will that be all?" Klaus asked.
"Upon your arrival your mother wanted me to inform you that the family is waiting for you and Mrs. Mikaelson in the living room in the west wing, they are expecting you," he said in a very formal way.
Klaus nodded and as he was about to take her and go meet his family she pulled her hand and turned to face the butler. If she was guessing correctly he was around his mid sixties. His hair was grey and he was quite thin. He also had a British accent like all the Mikaelsons did and he wore a very old fashioned uniform. He looked like he had jumped out of an old movie or something.
Caroline smiled at him and moved closer. Klaus raised his eyebrow and watched her intently.
"Is there something I could do for you Mrs. Mikaelson?" George asked her.
"Why, yes, George," she said imitating Klaus's tone and she could feel him smirking behind her, "you could start calling me by my name. I am sure you know it right?" she asked him with a kindness that obviously threw the man off.
"I, Mrs. Mikaelson, yes, I mean," the poor man lost his words.
She could hear Klaus stifling his laughter and she turned around and threw him an annoyed look which made him smile widely at her. He then moved near her and turned his attention to George.
"It's Caroline George, such a lovely name don't you think?" he asked him and Caroline wanted to kick him at that moment more than ever.
"Yes, master Klaus, it is," the butler said immediately and Caroline rolled her eyes again. She could swear that Klaus was enjoying this. All of this.
Klaus laughed and this time he wrapped his hand around her waist bringing her closer to his side. Her look turned angrier, but Klaus bent his head near her ear speaking to her loud enough for the butler to hear.
"Sweetheart, I think you are going to cause dear old George a stroke," he said as his nose gently touched her ear causing her to blush.
She turned her attention to the man in front of her.
"I don't want to make you feel uncomfortable, if you -,"
But the butler interrupted her gently by raising his hand causing Klaus to look at him more surprised than ever. George had been with his family ever since he was a baby. He had never seen him looking less formal and more gentle than he did at that moment. With Caroline. He was amazed.
"It is okay, Mrs. Caroline, it will be my honor," he said to her.
"Thank you," she replied and he gracefully bowed again and left.
Caroline stepped away from Klaus's hands and looked at him sharply. This kind of affection he was showing her was really making her mad. It was over the top and she was willing to bet that he was trying to provoke her. It seemed like she couldn't stop herself from reacting. Anger was flashing through her and it was showing like a neon sigh.
But what surprised her was the fact that he seemed to be looking at her impressed.
"What?" she asked him and she almost stomped her foot down.
"I have to say love, I am impressed," he told her.
She waited for him to explain. He was such a hard man to read. She was always on edge with him. She could never tell when his mood was about to change. She had spent the last few hours with him and she felt like she was playing a game of deadly chess. She couldn't tell what his next move would be. Intimidation, danger, tenderness, seduction. All were part of his game and it was making her head spin.
There was amusement in his gaze and his everlasting smirk was in place.
"George is always very formal, making him call you by your name in less than 5 minutes is quite the achievement, he must really like you," he told her and this time his features were an impeccable mask. She couldn't see his true intentions. And that scared her. He scared her.
"You make it sound like it would be impossible for someone to like me," she said in a low yet steady voice as she locked her gaze with his. It seemed to her that her bravery would be her own lifesaver in this impossible situation. So she would use it no matter what. Even against him.
"On the contrary, love," his tone turning seductive and yet there also seemed to be a simple sincerity in his manner that was contradicting his own seduction.
There it was again. He was like the tide. She couldn't tell when the waters would rise and when they would fall. All she knew was that she could drown at any moment. And if there was anything that her family had taught her it was that there was only one way to go down. And that was fighting.
Tides were bound and controlled by the attraction of the moon and the sun she thought. Everyone had their own weakness. Could she be that for him? If he could play with her and pull her strings as he had told her before then why couldn't she also make him dance to the tune she would sing?
Why fight against the tide? Maybe she should just learn how to harness it.
She smiled and approached him. She held her breath and she could tell that he was taken aback by her reaction, but her smile didn't falter.
"You know… if your butler could learn to call me by my name in less than 5 minutes then maybe you could follow his example" she sweetly told him, daring him to react. He remained silent. She couldn't tell if what was doing was a disaster in the making. His face was expressionless.
And then there was a flash of lust in his gaze and she knew that she could do this. She knew that she shouldn't be playing with fire, but she longed to make him pay for what he did to her in the gardens. She didn't know why she was thinking this way. This wasn't her. She wasn't one to play games, to challenge, to taunt.
And yet right now she was.
She slowly moved even closer to him. Her face coming closer to his. If he could play this game at will then so could she. She gently placed her hand on his upper arm and she felt his muscles tensing under the leather of his jacket. It was her time to smirk as she saw him instinctively leaning closer to her.
"All those pet names are quite irritating," she coldly said and straightened her back. She looked at him sharply.
She moved away from him and her look turned challenging.
"It is not sweetheart, love or whatever; it is Caroline, such a lovely name don't you think?" she threw his own words back to him.
She stood her ground and he stared down at her. At that moment she knew that no one ever dared to play with Klaus Mikaelson like this. Not even the slightest. And instead of feeling fear all she could feel was a sudden wave of excitement. A thrilling sensation that rivaled the one she could see in his eyes.
Dear God, what had she gotten herself into?
A firestorm lit up in his eyes with such intensity that it almost made her lose her balance. Now he was the one to slowly come near her. His gaze moved over her face. Drinking her in. She bit her lip and held her breath. That caused his gaze to change. It became almost affectionate.
"My family is waiting" he bent his head towards her so that his mouth was against her ear "Caroline," he said her name as if he was casting a spell. He was doing what she asked. Calling her by her name and yet it was using her own demand and her own name against her. She now realized that his pet names were safe. They were impersonal. The way her name was rolling on his lips was too intimate. And she liked it in a way she knew she shouldn't like.
All this was getting out of hand but she couldn't control herself. She turned her head to her side, following the sound of his voice. Her eyes met his and his lips were now close to hers. They stared each other for a moment but then he moved back.
"Should we?" he asked her and offered her his hand.
She nervously swallowed and nodded. All her courage was now gone under his piercing gaze.
He took her hand and led the way. This time she didn't withdraw her hand from his.
As they were going to meet his family, something that was really scaring her, he was speaking to her. He was showing her directions and paintings. He was talking to her about his, about their, house. In a weird way his voice seemed like a lullaby. It was calming her.
They eventually approached two grand glass Victorian doors.
"This way sweetheart," he told her and she didn't complain at him for not calling her by her name. It was safer that way.
But as they were going in he stopped her and his eyes bore into hers.
He looked at her almost transfixed, but then he shook his head and bent towards her. His mouth near the column of her neck.
"Trust me," he whispered and she stilled.
She narrowed her eyes, but he just took her by her hand and led her into the living room.
His whole family was there and she felt uncomfortable since all eyes fell on her.
The room was impressive. Glass doors and stained glass windows, a heavy chandelier, paintings, Victorian styled furniture and earthy colors. The room seemed majestic and yet each detail was fading due to the presence of Klaus and his family.
"You are finally back," Rebekah said sounding annoyed.
"Behave Rebekah," Esther said and Rebekah didn't say anything else.
Esther then turned her attention to Caroline and Klaus smiled.
"Did you have a good time?" she asked them fondly, but Caroline felt uncomfortable. So much that she instinctively moved closer to Klaus. There was something in that woman's eyes that she didn't like. It was probably her imagination and the fact that she was feeling insecure in this place, but in any case she couldn't help the rush of uncertainty and fear she felt under the gaze of her new mother in law.
Klaus smiled and held Caroline closer to him earning a glare from Rebekah.
"Indeed we did, did we not love?" he asked Caroline looking at her in a way that ironically made her feel secure.
"In a way," she mumbled and saw amusement dancing in Klaus's eyes.
"Well, Caroline maybe later you and I can take a walk to the gardens and you will let me show you the grounds," Esther said with a smile.
She was about to reply, but Klaus intervened.
"That won't be necessary mother, I have already shown her the gardens anyway," he said and she tensed as she remembered how exactly he had shown her the gardens. She also couldn't understand why Klaus had this attitude. He almost seemed protective of her. She couldn't help but wonder if he was trying to shield her from his family and their ill intentions of if he was trying to completely alienate her from everyone except him.
"It is okay, Klaus," she said and it felt weird calling him by his name. She ignored the strange sensation and turned her gaze to Esther "Your gardens look very beautiful and I would like to visit them with you too, Mrs. Mikaelson," she said with her most polite tone and Esther nodded understandingly to her.
She realized that Esther's sharp eyes were basically scanning her. She didn't know what she was trying to see or what she was seeing in her and she didn't want to find out either.
"I am sure Klaus will be disappointed, mother. Taking his bride from their honeymoon bed so soon to show her the gardens wouldn't be ideal for him would it?" Kol barged in with a smug smile and she felt herself blush.
Rebekah made a gagging noise and Klaus growled. She shifted uncomfortably as she remembered again what had happened between her and Klaus the night before. Kol couldn't possibly know what emotional turmoil his comments were causing her.
"Enough!" Esther said with a booming voice and her husband sighed.
"Everyone sit down," Mikael said authoritatively and all of them, including Klaus, obeyed. She sat on a Victorian style sofa next to Klaus feeling quite out of place. It was weird being in between the Mikaelson family like that. It seemed like an imaginary situation and yet now she was officially one of them. She wasn't foolish enough to believe that they would trust her and would give information to her about anything, but being between them right now was enough to make her skin crawl.
Klaus held her close to him. He wrapped one arm around her shoulders and he held her hand with his other hand. He was lazily caressing her palm with his fingertips and even though she wanted to retaliate and go sit somewhere else or at least sit at that opposite end of the sofa she knew it would be a stupid thing to do. She tried to relax even though his caresses were sending goose bumps all over her skin.
What made her feel even more uncomfortable was the way Klaus looked. His gaze was fixed on Mikael. There was a wicked expression in his eyes and he seemed to be enjoying the moment. He seemed intimidating and the more he caressed her hand the more she felt like she was in the midst of a viper nest.
The air was thick all around them and Mikael turned his attention to her.
"Forgive my youngest son for his coarse behavior, he has still to learn some manners," he told her and looked at Kol sharply.
She nodded awkwardly and then noticed that Kol seemed to be in pain as he sat on a couch with heavy pillows. She remembered that Damon had hit him some hours ago and she bit her lip. She never expected to be grateful for Mikael's presence, but she was. He was the only one that could guarantee her safety into this place.
"Don't worry love, Kol is quite harmless, aren't you brother?" Klaus said in a threatening tone that frightened her.
"If you say so Nik," Kol said dryly and Klaus's gaze clashed with his. A slither of fear passed through her heart, but Klaus just held her hand tighter and she was taken aback by the fact that his presence and his touch were soothing her fear. She refrained from looking at him. She didn't want him to understand that she was feeling dependent on him.
"Father I am sure you didn't gather us here to see Nik and Kol fighting over the new addition to our family," Rebekah cut in with a blaze tone.
She looked down and tried to control her own temper. She didn't know how long she would be able to stand Rebekah's and Kol's provocations without expressing her own anger. An anger that kept piling up inside her. She knew that it would be a mistake to confront them, at least directly, but this was not who she was. She was used to speaking her own mind and this was taking a toll on her.
"Actually, Rebekah, your father has something very important to say, so can all of you please act civilized for moment?" Esther said while she drank some of her red wine.
Caroline noticed that both Mikael and Esther were holding drinks. She didn't know them personally, but it seemed quite weird to her. It was still quite early for them to start drinking.
She also noticed the cruel looks Mikael and Klaus were exchanging. There seemed to be a silent battle between them.
"Well, father," Klaus asked with interest but there was a subtle irony in his tone that was clear to everyone, "what is it you want to tell us?"
His voice was pure menace. A mixture of arrogance and contempt that caused her to wince. Mikael looked at him with enmity and since she was in the middle of all of this she felt like she was suffocating.
Mikael turned his back to them and went next to Esther. She gave him her hand and her most supporting look. Kol and Rebekah looked at each other and the scene that was unfolding in front of them. It was obvious that they didn't know what was going on either.
Klaus's smirk grew wider and his fingers kept drawing patterns on her skin. Without understanding it she gripped his hand tighter and her nails unintentionally sank into his skin. He just brought her hand to his lips and soothed her anxiety with a kiss that made her blood boil.
The words he had told her before they entered the living room were now playing in her mind on repeat.
In the depths of his eyes there was a pool of conflicting emotions that was robbing her ability to breath. Something was about to happen and Klaus knew perfectly well what it was. From the looks of it he seemed pleased with the whole situation and that only scared her more.
"What is going on," Kol asked and this time he looked absolutely serious.
Klaus leaned back on the sofa and crossed his legs. He looked absolutely pleased at Mikael's expression and his eyes darkened even more. She became aware of the byplay between Klaus and Mikael. They way those two men silently communicated with each other at that moment seemed to her like a dark dance. A struggle of dominance with lethal undertones. Shivers ran through her as she realized now more than ever that she was trapped in a place full of peril.
Mikael turned his back on all of them and stared at a certain painting. It was the fall of Lucifer from the heavens.
He never was one for art, but this must have been the only painting he could always relate too. It didn't matter that it was created by the hands of his bastard son. The same son that was now casting him aside from his own kingdom. It did seem poetic in a sense.
His gaze hardened.
"Father?" Rebekah's tone was filled with uncertainty and fear.
He turned and looked at his children.
Then he looked at Klaus who was staring him with a look of pure glee. He also looked at the way his son was holding his new possession. He almost felt pity for the girl.
He took the last sip from his drink and smiled. A smile that to others would seem ruthless, but he knew that Klaus was relishing at this sight even more.
"I was never a man of many words so I will make this short," he said emotionlessly.
"Caroline as you know already your marriage with…my son had been arranged by your father and me," he said as he looked at her with a sharp gaze.
She looked at Mikael unable to prevent the anger from flashing in her eyes.
"Yes, I know," she confirmed bitterly and tried to discretely wiggle her hand out of Klaus's hold, but found it impossible.
"What you might not know is that your father and I planned to give to you and my son a certain wedding gift," he said and she blinked surprised.
From what she already knew a bank account in hers and Klaus's name had been created and both her brothers and Mikael had transferred multiple funds from their personal accounts. The amount was exorbitant.
Elena was quite enthusiastic when she was informing her of all of this. Truth is that all this 'generosity' was making her ill because in reality it was one more thing that was binding her to Klaus. She would rather give away all this fortune and be free than be forced to marry him and spend the rest of her life next to man like him.
She also knew that the plans to marry her off with Klaus must have been organized for some time now since Damon had informed her that before her father died he and Mikael had made a contract that after her marriage to Klaus there would be a transfer of titles to their names. Those titles referred to companies, estates and condos all over the world. The deal also included a significant package of equity funds for them and a trust fund for any children she would have with Klaus.
She also knew that there had been a secret deal in favor of Klaus that included certain aspects from the underground business of both families.
All those contracts and excessive numbers were hurting her head in all honesty. Technically this was also supposed to be a form of protection for her. This was now hers and Klaus's private fortune that was no longer tied to the Mikaelson or the Salvatore family. Supposedly Klaus couldn't touch any of the above things without her signature. It was of course a given in their world that he was the one that would have the main control and that she would have to obey and respect his wishes and decisions.
The same thing would apply for Rebekah's and Damon's marriage.
All the above were things that she already knew. She couldn't understand what Mikael was talking about or why Klaus seemed so eager and content.
"Giuseppe was a wise man Caroline; he knew that the times have changed. And it is known that with the times we must follow," he quoted Giuseppe bitterly.
Caroline couldn't know that Mikael was internally cursing Giuseppe for his trap.
The old man knew that he was dying and had set the cards in a way that insured him that Damon wouldn't have to face him, but Klaus. That way the Mikaelsons would have to go through the same directional changes the Salvatores would go through after his death and that would buy time for Damon and Stefan to gain control.
And of course Klaus took complete advantage of this opportunity, if anything he was certain that he was the one that orchestrated this whole plan with Giuseppe behind his back. He had to give it to him. Klaus had played him nicely. The pupil obviously wanted to surpass his teacher and in this battle he seemed to achieve exactly that.
In any other case he would be able to attack now that the Salvatores were weak in leadership, at least until Damon would cement his place as the new leader of their organization, but now he couldn't do that. Caroline's marriage with Klaus ensured this. It was an awful dreadful coincidence that the Lockwoods appeared at the scene at the exact moment they did and that they seem to always have intelligence over the next moves of the Mikaelsons and the Salvatores. And in addition the last ordeal he had to go through. It was ironic now that he thought about it. Everything was now falling into place for his bastard. Even God favored him. Or should he say the devil?
He turned his full attention to the blonde girl again. Pity that she was an innocent. He knew that this would soon change now that she was in the claws of his worthless son. If only Elijah had managed to protect himself from Klaus he thought with fury. But Elijah found his way into an early grave just as Finn and Henrik did and now the throne belonged to Klaus.
"Go on father, don't leave us in suspense," Klaus mocked him.
He gritted his teeth and took a deep breath. Esther supported him with her gaze, but at this moment he hated her as much as he hated her son. Her adultery was the root of the evil that had befallen his house. He couldn't allow to anyone to know that his wife had been unfaithful to him. It was a matter of honor among their kind. And yet he couldn't get rid of her either. Their marriage had started as one of convenience, but he grew to love her and no matter the rage he had felt he couldn't take her life. And she always made sure to protect the life of her bastard afterwards.
If things were different. If Klaus was his true son right now he might even have been proud of him. But he was not. And in the last years Klaus's actions had been nothing but a disappointment to him.
"Unfortunately, Caroline," he said ignoring Klaus's interruption and the strange gazes that Kol and Rebekah were casting him "your father died before seeing you and my son unite your lives. He would have been proud and he would have explained to you that from now on things are about to change," he said.
Caroline looked at him without understanding where this was going on. Things had already changed. She was married to Klaus. Nothing could be worse than this.
"Giuseppe and I had decided two things. One was that the union of our families was unavoidable and the other was that it was time to step down. Both of us," he said and Caroline's breath stilled.
She dared to look at Klaus and she only saw darkness in him.
Kol and Rebekah were left speechless.
"The arrival of the Lockwoods was a wake-up call. The world is a different place and it is time for the new generation to take the lead. That means your brother and…Klaus," he informed her and went to pour another drink.
She completely paled and her heart rate sped up as she tried to swallow her fear. This couldn't be happening. If Klaus were to replace Mikael he would gain complete control. She would be completely left at his mercy.
"Giuseppe's death ensured Damon's place as the leader over your family's interests," he continued as he drank more of his scotch.
"I could go back on our deal if I wanted to," he said and his hard gaze locked with Klaus's murderous one.
There was a carefully veiled threat in his words as he challenged Klaus, but he retreated almost immediately.
"But I would like to consider myself a man of honor and Giuseppe was right, it is time for things to change. Truth is that I am getting old and I need to devote some time to my lovely wife, a thing that I have denied her for a long time now," he said with a gentle tone.
"Father you can't mean that," Rebekah said with a low voice.
Esther picked herself up and went next to Mikael.
"Actually Rebekah," she stepped in, "your father and I have decided to travel," she said with a smile.
Mikael nodded and Klaus smirked.
"If anything it has been a long time coming father," he said with his most polite and fake tone.
Rebekah was speechless and Kol had his piercing gaze pointed at Klaus.
"In the next days me and your mother will depart for England," Mikael said in a cold voice.
"And Klaus will take his place as the head of our family," he announced with finality and complete and utter silence followed his words.
Klaus's satisfaction was rolling off of him in waves that were crashing into her and destroying each and every hope she had left.
His words from earlier were now echoing in her mind.
"Sweetheart you may not realize it right now but you will need my protection. Your life depends on it. Soon you will see that I am the only one you can rely on if you want to survive this…"
He was telling her the truth. She didn't realize it then, but his words spoke more than just the truth. He was revealing to her her own future.
Mikael wouldn't be able to protect her in any way. She would be left alone in this hell. Trapped and powerless. Counting only on her husband's good graces.
Klaus was now more than just a player. He was taking control over everything and she would have to live next to him and learn how to survive in to his world.
He was the one that was going to decide her fate from now on. She didn't have any delusions any more. She knew that she belonged to him and he could do with her anything he wished. She was nothing more than a trophy wife. They had trapped her into a game that was a lot bigger that she could even start to contemplate. Everything was a well orchestrated game of deadly chess and she was nothing but a pawn in their games.
Klaus was right. She was just collateral damage. Her brothers had sacrificed her in order to gain power. It was never about the Lockwoods. All was a game in order to make Mikael step down. A game that would ensure Klaus' rise to power and Damon's survival in his new position.
All of them had used her and Klaus was now going to continue to do so. She was nothing but an instrument for him to play at will. She felt like she was drowning.
There was no way out she thought as her eyes filled with unshed tears.
Klaus still held her hand and his fingers seemed more like chains. Unbreakable chains that were imprisoning her where she now belonged. With a man who was condemning her to an existence that would cast a heavy shadow over her life and would forever change her.
She felt his thumb tilting her head up so he could see her eyes. She saw pure triumph in his gaze.
The firestorm that lit his dark eyes was sparkling flames in her veins. She was burning and falling into an abyss that had no end.
He had asked her to trust him when he knew from the beginning that she didn't have any other choice. He had left her with no other alternatives than to ally with him and she knew that a dalliance with Klaus would require specific concessions on her part. She would have to give to him more than just her oath of matrimony. She would have to surrender her body, her mind and even her soul. She might even have to give him her own life in the end.
His lips found hers and she knew that this kiss was the one that sealed her fate. He was never going to let her go. Their marriage had given him all he wanted.
Last night he had gained the Queen and today he had claimed his throne.
Long live the King…
….and may the God save the Queen….
How do you love on a night without feelings?
She says, love, I hear sound, I see fury
She says, love's not a hostile condition
What is love but the strangest of feelings?
A sin you swallow for the rest of your life?
A/N : So here was the second part of the story. I hope you enjoyed that one too. As I have said chapter 4 and chapter 5 were originally one very long chapter. If you read them now both again you will realize that chapter 4 was more of an "introduction" for this one. And this is why the last chapter had less klaroline scenes than this one. Also in the last chapter some reviewers mentioned how Caroline should be more dynamic. Obviously Caroline is in a very hard position right now and she needs some adjustment time. But as I have said chapter 4 and chapter 5 are the parts of one chapter so now that you have both parts you can see more clearly Caroline's character and how she is not a weak person but has to deal with the fact that her life has turned really dangerous and complicated. Or at least I hope that you can. Let me know about that one.
To those that have already guessed that the closet scene from chapter 4 was inspired from the second movie of The Princess Diaries...well yes you are correct! I do envy that closer LOL
I hope you will forgive any mistakes. This was a busy week for me so I didn't have the time to edit this chapter the way I would have liked.
Many thanks to each and every review you gave me! Guest or not! Those reviews mean a lot to me. They make me think the progress of this story again and again and your comments are really useful to me. I am also grateful and in awe with all the people that have followed and marked this story as their favorite. Thank you!
As always tell me what you think about this chapter! Did you like it? Give me your thoughts and your perspective. Comments and criticism are always welcome!