Author's Note: Hello again my dears! So here is the final chapter to my little story. I sincerely you all will enjoy it. Thank you so much to those of you who have reviewed my story, it really made my day :D So, here it is!

WARNING: Spanking of a teenager will appear in this chapter.

SPOILER ALERT: A lot of fluff at the end. Yes, it is possible for Damon to show his gentle side, especially with Elena lol.

DISCALIMER: The show and characters are not mine, but the plot for the fic is my own.

Chapter 2- Never Let Me Go

It was nighttime and Damon and Elena had finally reached her house. Elena had fallen asleep in the car on the way home, allowing Damon some time to calm down and contemplate what his next step would be. He had already planned on having a long chat with Elena, but there was another idea he was struggling with…

I don't know if I should even try that method with her, but then again she could've died today! He grunted in frustration as he put the car in park. I should, but then she might hate me. Okay fine I won't…but then what's to stop her from doing this again?

Damon opened the door and got out of the car. Maybe I'll just wait and see how the conversation goes…he resolved while opening the passenger door.

Elena hopped out of the door and roughly brushed passed Damon while fixing him with a slight glare, still angry at being manhandled earlier that day.

Okay, maybe I won't wait! Damon rolled his eyes and shut the door while accompanying her up to the front porch.

As they approached it, Elena sighed and finally broke the silence. "Thank you for bringing me home."

"Well your ride left you; I didn't want to leave you stranded."

Elena stopped in front of the door, still not able to really meet Damon's gaze. "She was just scared…she didn't mean to run."

Damon scoffed, "Yes she did, she's been running for 500 years."

"I just can't believe Elijah's alive…why do you think he killed those three vampires and just…let us go?"

Damon merely shrugged. "If I had a dollar every time a vampire surprised me."

Thinking they were finished, Elena quietly started to walk towards the door.

Damon quickly grabbed her arm and turned her to face his unyielding stare. "What you did today was incredibly stupid." He scolded tersely, hoping she'd at least apologize.

"Actually, the only thing that was stupid was that I got caught!" She retorted without remorse.

Never mind…

Elena tore her arms from his grasp before attempting to stare him down. "I don't question why you and Stefan and everyone else try so hard to save me. You shouldn't question why I try so hard to save all of you!"

Damon's eyes widened at her response. That's it! This is happening! His mind decided as he opened the door and pushed her inside.

Elena gawked at his actions. "Ummm excuse me Damon, but I did NOT invite you in here!" She snapped impishly.

Damon shut the door behind him, seething. "Technically you did Elena, and it wasn't that long ago." Jeremy suddenly walked in, bringing relief to Elena as she wanted to just get away from Damon's anger.

Jeremy was about to tell them about Stefan being caught in the tomb with the bitch vampiress Katherine, however he was taken aback by the dirty looks Damon and Elena were giving each other. "Hey guys, what's going on?" He asked, confused and curious at the same time.

Damon quickly strode in front of Jeremy and caught his gaze, his own pupils beginning to dilate as he stared into Jeremy's eyes. "I want you to stay down here, and play video games on the TV for a little while. Turn the volume up really loud, and don't pay any attention to the noises coming from upstairs if you hear anything."

Elena realized with horror that Damon was using compulsion on her little brother. "WHAT ARE YOU DOING?" She shouted while trying to pull Damon away from Jeremy.

She kept forgetting that his vampire strength was no match for her as he merely pushed her away. Jeremy felt himself repeating the command in a trance, before obediently going over to the couch and switching on his Wii.

Satisfied, Damon turned towards a dumbfounded Elena, and grabbed her hand before dragging her up the stairs.

"HEY! STOP IT DAMON! LET GO OF ME! LET GOOOO!" She protested while pulling hard against his grip.

"No you don't…" Damon hissed before literally sweeping Elena off her feet, and carrying her bridal style the rest of the way up the stairs. "We need to have a little talk Elena."

Elena was feeling too shocked to continue reacting in a violent manner. "Damon Salvatore, you'd better put me down if you know what's good for you!"

Damon threw his head back and laughed at the pathetic threat as they entered her room. He shut the door with his foot before setting Elena on the bed and sitting next to her. "Damon I'm really getting pissed off! This is an invasion of privacy! I want you to read between the lines," she stuck both her middle fingers up, the anger completely taking over and numbing her senses, "GO the FUCK AWAY!"

Damon's eyes widened and his mouth dropped at hearing and seeing Elena act so boldly. He grabbed both her hands with his right hand and pinned them to the bed, while grasping her chin in his left hand, forcing her to look at him. "YOU do NOT talk to me like that! I am not one of your siblings little girl!"

"You're not my boyfriend either!" She spat while trying to wriggle out of his grasp.

Damon's eyebrows furrowed even more. "At this point Elena, I really don't give a damn! Now," he let her chin go and grabbed both of her hands in his, securing them in a way that told Elena struggling would be pointless, "You're going to listen to what I have to say Elena, and then we're going to deal with your idiocy from today!"

Elena's eyes widened at hearing the word "deal" in that sentence. "W-what do you mean Damon?"

Ignoring her question, Damon proceeded to let her have it. "Elena, listen to me and listen good! I understand that you were trying to protect your loved ones today, and while we appreciate your love and concern for us, running off like that with a vampire you barely know and not letting any of us know where you were or what was going on, was probably the stupidest thing you could've done!"

Elena rolled her eyes in exasperation, trying to ignore the blush that crept into her cheeks from being reprimanded. "Save the stupid lecture Damon, you already told me this-"

"I'M NOT FINISHED!" He roared, causing Elena to jump.

She shrank back, her mouth instantly zipping itself closed.

"I don't think you realize that there could have been many other options at handling the situation today! I'm not going to take the time to explain them to you right now because it's not important. The point is that you put yourself in major danger today Elena Gilbert, and you could've been killed!"

Elena trembled from the raw intensity of his voice. "So what? You and Stefan can risk your lives for me but I can't for you? How very hypocritical and feminist of you! It's just because I'm a girl isn't it?"

"NO Elena it's because you're a fragile little human!"

"Oh God, not this speech again!" She complained while shifting uneasily.

"Since you're going to argue with me Elena, I think this speech IS called for!" Damon yelled back, feeling his breath quicken at the passion of their conversation. "Your safety is the most important thing in the world to us Elena, to ME! Stefan may give in to your demands, but I refuse to! If I have to keep you out of danger by keeping you out of the loop, then I will!"

Elena fidgeted, trying to escape Damon's grip as his face came closer to hers.

"YOU have NO authority Damon! You're not my dad, or my boyfriend! So stop trying to treat me like a child and like you can rule over me!"

Damon felt his jaw tightening at Elena's refusal to cooperate. "I may not be either of those things Elena Gilbert, but you're dating MY brother! And even though I don't like to admit it, I do care for his happiness and well-being, and nearly killing yourself in an attempt to protect us, is a pretty poor way of repaying his love and sacrifices he's made for you! Technically, you dating him makes both him AND I your protectors, you're practically family to us! And whether or not you like it, I love you too Elena! I will always love you, even if it can't be in the way I'd like it to be. So since I can't be your boyfriend Elena, consider me an older, extremely protective 'brother' who is willing to kick anyone's ass if it'll keep you out of harm's way! You will STOP trying to play hero Elena, you're not as strong as we are or capable of handling those other dangerous vampires. We know what we're dealing with and we know how to protect the ones we love! So stop looking for trouble, even if the intentions are good. Do you understand me?"

Elena felt her temperature rising as the overwhelming mixture of fiery emotions augmented within her. She didn't really give his words any consideration, as she was too busy feeling defensive, indignant and pissed off that he was treating her like a child. "Oh screw you and your overprotectiveness Damon! Why don't you go find some poor helpless girl, ride her hard and then suck on her neck like you always do!"

Damon gritted his teeth and decided that the time for talking was over. Before Elena could even contemplate what was happening, Damon had grabbed her bicep and had flipped her face down over his lap.

"I warned you young lady, but you refuse to listen!"

"AH! HEY! What the hell do you think you're doing Damon?" She shrieked, horrified at the position she was in.

Damon paused and looked at the defenseless state Elena was currently in…was he really about to do this? The outraged shrieks and cursing coming from the girl over his lap brought an abrupt end to his musings and confirmed the answer for him.

"Elena," he began to say while securing his leg over her flailing ones, trapping them and causing her bottom to lift higher and become a better target, "I am about to do something that I really hoped I would never have to do with you. But obviously, you refuse to see reason, and you never obey my orders or even Stefan, your own boyfriend's orders when it comes to your safety!"

"Let me up Damon, right now! I'm an independent woman, I obey no one!" Elena howled, furious that she couldn't move her limbs. She used her hands to try and push the upper half of her body up from Damon's lap, but he pushed her back down with his strong hand.

"And there's your problem Elena." Damon continued to scold while placing his hand on Elena's back, suppressing her ability to get up. "Independence is okay in its way, but what happens when you become too reckless and free with your motives, not even thinking about the consequences? How do you feel when you have no one to answer to? What is the outcome of having absolutely no guidance in your life? I'll tell you what the result is: shame, regrets, depression, possible death and guilt! I should know! Stefan had to go through it, and it nearly killed him!"

Elena felt conviction wash over her from the truth of his rebuke. She stiffened as she felt Damon's free hand rest on her lower back, dangerously close to her rear. Surely he wasn't going to do anything sexual to her? Of course not you idiot, even he wouldn't do that to you! Her conscience scolded. Surely he doesn't intend to…no! He wouldn't dare!

Damon sighed as his reprimand came to an end. "Elena, no one is trying to take your independence away from you. But I'll be damned if I'm just going to sit around, and let you risk your precious, valuable life!"

And with that being said, Damon raised his hand and brought it down hard upon Elena's upturned bottom. "OW!" She shrieked at the stinging sensation. This was NOT happening to her! It just couldn't be!

Another swat made her gasp. "Damon, enough of this! Let me up! I am not a child!"

Damon smirked as he kept swatting away. "Oh but you are my dear, you're not even an adult yet. Plus you've been acting an awful lot like a disobedient child, who simply keeps getting herself into dangerous situations. This is LONG overdue Elena…"

Elena began to yelp as Damon's swats became faster and harder. "I hate you Damon! I hate you for this!" She was fighting the tears that were trying to force their way out, her resolve was quickly melting.

Elena's words cut Damon to the bone, but he refused to stop until he got the point across. "Hate me all you want sweetheart, it's not going to stop me." Elena continued to struggle, gasp, and yelp as the swats rained down endlessly.

At length, Damon was considering taking the spanking to the next level by removing her pants and possibly even her panties. However, he resolved that would be taking it way too far and be inappropriate, especially since they were merely friends still getting to know each other, and Stefan was the only one who had the right to see her in any nude form.

Elena's yelps presently turned to whimpers as she struggled vehemently to get out of his grasp. "Owwww Damon-OW! Please stop-AHH! I'm sorry I-YOUCH! I won't do it again! Please stoooop!" She yowled, her voice beginning to go higher in pitch as it became clogged with tears.

Damon shook his head, feeling bad that he had to be the bearer of her pain. "Sorry Elena, I don't quite believe you yet. I think you're just sorry you got caught, oh wait…didn't you tell me that earlier? Yeah, I remember now, you said that getting caught was stupid! So yeah, stop trying to get out of your punishment, we haven't even begun yet…"

"Maybe I am trying to get out of it! So what? You're such a bastard for doing this Damon!" Her statement was followed by a shriek as the fire in her rear began to increase even more.

"And YOU just added on to your punishment young lady." Damon exclaimed quietly while speeding up the rhythm in the swats. Elena kept pounding the bed, trying hard to hold back the sobs that wanted to escape by swapping them out with her anger.

"No no no no no no no no no no no!" She chanted in a shout as she tried to bite his leg, desperately wanting to get away from his unmerciful hand.

Damon grunted at her attempt, and re-positioned her so that the upper half of her body was lying on the bed, before continuing the spanking.

"STOP telling me NO Elena and don't you dare bite me little girl! This is going to continue until you get it through that stubborn head of yours to listen to both Stefan and me!"

"Stefan would never treat me this way! I'll NEVER listen to you!" She cried while burying her face in the bed sheets, hating that the tears were becoming harder to hold back.

"Which is precisely why I'm doing this now sweetheart; he won't, so I will." Damon could feel Elena suffering to hold back her sobs as he continued to smack her bottom.

After another minute or so of repeated squeals and threats aimed at him, Damon decided the first half of her spanking was over and stopped.

Elena breathed a sigh of relief, a few tears escaping her eyes as she tried to catch her breath and regain control of her emotions. She could feel Damon rubbing her incredibly warmed bottom with his hand in what she assumed to be a soothing motion.

Snarling at his touch, Elena tried to get up but was surprised when he pushed her back down again. "Oh no, we're not finished yet little girl." Damon whispered vehemently before reaching over to grab Elena's hairbrush which lay on her bedside table.

Her eyes widened in terror and disbelief as she realized he intended to use that thing on her. "NO! Absolutely NOT! Damon this is gone on far enough, I've learned my lesson! Let me up now!"

Damon began to softly rub her bottom with the hard surface of the brush, giving it a few warning taps as she continued to protest. "What did I say about telling me 'no' Elena? The fact that you're still talking to me in this way proves to me that you have not learned your lesson! Now hush and be still!"

"YOU ARE NOT USING THE HAIRBRUSH ON ME!" Elena screamed angrily, refusing to back down.

"Watch me!" Damon replied calmly before bringing the implement up, and swiftly smacking it hard upon Elena's bottom.

The impact it made on her rear, caused Elena to arch up and scream out such un-lady like profanities that Damon had to suppress the small laugh that wanted to escape his throat.

"Consider yourself lucky that I'm not spanking you on your panties or even on the bare Elena Gilbert. Were you alive in the 1800s with Stefan and me, you wouldn't be so lucky!"

Elena merely growled in response to his words. Damon continued to spank away, praying that she would quickly see reason so that he could finally stop.

A minute went by with the sounds of smacking and screeching filling the atmosphere. Elena felt like she could take it no longer; the pain was becoming more and more unbearable as the brush was brought down upon her bottom over and over and over again. Was Damon ever going to stop?

SWAT! "OUCH!"

SWAT! "STOP IT!"

SWAT! "AHOOOOOW!"

SWAT! "YOU DICK!"

SWAT SWAT! "OOOOOWIE PLEASE STOP!"

SWAT SWAT SWAT! "NOOOO!"

SWAT SWAT SWAT! "DAAAAAAAAAAAMOOOOOON!" That last long-suffering wail was pain to Damon's ears.

He knew that he was finally getting to Elena, and decided that now would be a good time to finish up the lecture. "Elena, I hate having to punish you like this, and I know you know that. I would not be doing it, unless I seriously felt like you needed it. And even you know Elena, that in general I'm strongly against anything that causes you pain. But this is not a pain that will last forever; it will merely last enough time to hopefully remind you that you have people who love and care about you, and will do this in the future if you decide to continue doing things to jeopardize your life. I sincerely hope you remember this Elena, because if you EVER pull a stunt as stupid as you did today, I will make this spanking feel like love taps. Do you hear me young lady!"

"YEEEEESSS!" Elena howled, her sobs finally breaking free like water from a dam.

"Yes what?"

"YES SIIIIIIIIIR!" And with that final howl, Damon released the ending series of extra hard smacks that left Elena sobbing hysterically. She quickly grew too tired to fight anymore and finally submitted to the punishment by going limp over Damon's strong lap.

She finally understood why he was doing it…as much as she hated the fire in her bottom and as much as she wanted to ignore the feeling of care that she felt from Damon, she couldn't deny in the end that she really did deserve this.

Upon seeing Elena wilting over his lap, Damon recognized that she at last had accepted her punishment, and quickly stopped the spanking, unable to bear the sound of her cries any longer.

He threw the brush down, and at once began to rub the sobbing girl's back in a comforting way. He let Elena cry…he knew she needed to let it out, and despite the embarrassing position she was in, it was best to let her have a good cry and recover a bit before the real comforting began.

After rubbing her back a couple of times, Damon helped Elena sit up. She hissed as pressure was added upon her tender bottom, but Damon spread his legs a bit so she could sit comfortably in his lap.

Elena's beautiful face was flushed and wetted by tears and perspiration from the toll the spanking took on her body. Her usual smile was replaced with a terribly sad, quavering mouth. She was still gulping down sobs, and was having trouble calming herself down. Damon took her wet face in his hands, tenderly wiped the trail of tears from her face, and made her look at him once more. "Elena, please don't EVER make me have to do that again."

Elena couldn't help it…the water works started all over again and she covered her face with her hands, unsure of what to do next, but feeling too overwhelmed to really make a decision for herself.

Damon could see that she needed help to make her next move, so he made it for her. "Come here sweetheart." He opened his arms and Elena wasted no time as she hurriedly buried her face in his chest, begging for the comfort that she knew he was going to give.

"I'm sorry…I'm s-s-so sorrryyy…" She cried out with humility.

Damon's arms quickly snaked around her small, quivering frame, and he held her close to him while rocking her and whispering sweet nothings into her ear. "Shhh Elena…it's okay beautiful, I'm here…calm down, I'm here…I've got ya."

It felt so good to be comforted and held like this…but it didn't lessen her cries. The tears weren't necessarily over the pain anymore, although her poor bottom was still throbbing greatly. No…at this point, it was a whole bunch of things.

She wept out of fear for the safety of her loved ones…she didn't want to lose any more family or friends…she wept with a renewed sense of grief over her parent's death; oh how she missed them…Elena wept because she was overwhelmed with life itself…sometimes, there just didn't need to be a reason to have a good cry. Sometimes, all it took was someone to show sympathy and compassion, and to tell that hurting and emotionally drained person that it was okay to cry.

Damon's embrace was all the words she needed to hear.

"Hey, it's okay Elena…we can stay here like this as long as we need to…just let it all out darling. Shhh I've got ya, I'm here…I'll never leave." A few tears escaped from Damon's eyes as well, simply from the powerful love he felt for this girl. It was almost painful how much he cared for her…but he knew this would be a moment neither of them would ever forget, and one that he'd cherish for the rest of his life.

Damon planted sweet little kisses all over Elena's head, while stroking her hair and trying to soothe her as best he could.

Elena smiled amidst the waterworks; she felt so safe in Damon's arms…so consumed from his love for her…consumed like water when swimming in a pool… not, not even the pool…more like the water from the ocean.

She couldn't help but think of the lyrics to one of her favorite songs from 'Florence and the Machines:'

"And the arms of the ocean are carrying me,
And all this devotion was rushing out of me,
And the crashes are heaven, for a sinner like me,
The arms of the ocean deliver me.

Though the pressure's hard to take,
It's the only way I can escape,
It seems a heavy choice to make,
But now I am under, Oh.

And it's breaking over me,
A thousand miles down to the sea bed,
Found the place to rest my head.

Never let me go, never let me go.
Never let me go, never let me go."

Elena closed her eyes as the tune ran through her head. She was relieved to feel that her sobs had finally started to diminish, but her tears were ongoing.

At this point, Damon began to scoot back against the wall of the bed, bringing Elena with him. He leaned against the pillows and tucked her into his arms. "Mmm…this is nice." He muttered with a smile as Elena cuddled closer into his embrace. "Is this the only way I'll ever get you to come willingly into my arms? Maybe I should spank you more often." He said with a smug grin.

Elena smacked his chest with her hand. "Shut up jerk…" she mumbled while nuzzling her face into his shirt.

Damon chuckled at how cute she had sounded in that faint-hearted insult. "S'not funny…" Elena muttered while stifling a yawn.

"I thought it was." He replied while smirking. There he was; her Damon was back; witty, sarcastic, light-hearted Damon.

"I like you much better when you're not mad at me." Elena said in a small voice, sounding to Damon very much like a little child.

He rested his chin upon her head, smiling at her words. "Then don't give me a reason to be mad at you Elena."

She pouted at his response. "Why did you have to resort to spanking me Damon? That hurt like a mother-"

"Ah ah ah, mouth Miss Gilbert." Damon chided lightly while putting a finger to her lips. "And I know it hurt, I'm sorry it had to happen. But you and I both know that you can be out of control at times sweet heart, and if no one else is going to challenge you, then it would be irresponsible for me not to ya know?"

Funny how I was arguing with my conscience about that same thing earlier today. Elena thought as she grinned timidly at the memory.

"Besides Elena, nothing else seemed to work, so I did not really have a choice. I'm just sorry we had to use this method. I hate seeing you cry…"

Elena nodded her head while thinking about his words. "I'm…well…I'm not entirely sorry you had to do it. I mean don't get me wrong, I HATED the fiery feeling of that particular method you used on me, which still hasn't gone away yet." She ended with emphasis on the last few words before looking pointedly at him with a half-hearted glare.

Damon merely looked innocently at the ceiling as if he had nothing to do with that fact.

"But…" Elena continued, "I can see NOW that, as much as I hate to admit it, this was necessary. Next time though, let's skip straight to the comforting session okay? I like being held by you."

Damon looked down at her with mild surprise that she was admitting this, but it made his heart beam nonetheless. "Well I like holding you Elena. But as I said before, don't ever give me a reason to repeat this night, because it'll be worse the next time. Okay?"

Elena shuddered at his words of warning before nodding her head. Damon let his head fall back on the pillows as both held each other, not wanting to move from the comfortable position.

"You're a wonderful and beautiful girl Elena." Damon continued, feeling the need to explain himself. "I really do understand the value of sacrifice, but if anyone is going to make a sacrifice it shouldn't be you. You've already had to make enough simply from the deaths of your parents. You're still a young, gorgeous, and fragile human who has her whole life to live. Stefan and I have been alive since the 1800s; we've lived enough."

Elena looked at Damon as though to protest but he beat her to the punch, "We will never try to put ourselves in harm's way purposefully if we can help it Elena, for your sake more than our own. But Stefan and I have already promised ourselves that if we have to sacrifice ourselves in order to keep you safe, and there's no other choice, then we will willingly do it. We'd never let anything happen to you Elena, you are our life. You. Are. MY. Life."

Elena felt her heart flutter at hearing those last words.

"I know this isn't something you want to hear, and the only reason I'm not going to compel you to forget tonight, is because this is something you need to remember. I know this whole situation looks unfair to you, but at this point, there's really no reason for you to even try and get between a lifelong feud between us and these other idiot vampires who want nothing more than revenge and trouble."

Elena sat up at hearing this, "Damon, they're the ones who have brought ME into the midst of all this because of Katherine! I don't really have a choice in this matter…"

Damon patiently shook his head at Elena while gently drawing her back into his arms. "Elena, there are still other ways to get through this though. None of this is your fault and none of it should be your responsibility."

"But-"

"Please Elena…try to understand this from my perspective. I know you're a strong girl, and none of us consider you helpless. But as my brother's girlfriend and MY dear friend/ little sister/possible future love if it doesn't work out with Stefan,"

Elena rolled her eyes and snickered at that last statement.

"It is our duty to protect and keep you safe. I know you want to help keep us safe too…but honestly, the only way you'll be of any help to us at all, are if you take care of yourself and just try not to meddle in vampiric troublesome affairs. Putting yourself in danger makes us even more vulnerable to our enemies because of our feelings for you Elena. You're basically our weakness…it's a distraction to hafta worry about you, and that can make us an easier target for the other vampires. Plus, going on suicide missions like you tried to today are incredibly selfish of you Elena. Have you ever stopped to think of the affect it would have over your brother, your aunt, Stefan's and all of our lives if you had died tonight?"

Elena looked down with guilt; she had never thought of that.

"So can you blame me for acting in the way I did tonight? If you're not going to listen to me or Stefan, what are we supposed to do? Just shrug it off and hope you'll think before you act next time? Stefan lets you defy him without really knowing it Elena, and it's becoming a habit for him to just give into your every wish and demand. I know you don't intend or mean to take advantage of him, but that's something you manage to do when it comes to dangerous missions like todays. I know he doesn't want to overstep his boundaries with you, especially since you two are a couple. But I'm willing to intervene on both his and my behalf when you put yourself in harm's way Elena, even if it means I'm risking the loss of your friendship. I just can't help but be protective of you…and you KNOW that everyone needs someone to serve as a sort of guide or leader in their life, otherwise they'd go crazy."

Elena nodded her head in agreement, trying not to think about her parents when he mentioned having a "guide" in one's life.

"I love being your friend and protecting you Elena and I will always try to help you in as much a painless way as possible. But as long as you continue to put yourself in danger, so will I continue to use methods like I just did a little bit ago. But just so ya know, I really did do it because I care for you. So unless you run to Sheriff Forbes or anyone else and make a big deal about my spanking you, I'm sticking to this form of discipline. Okay?"

Elena sighed as Damon finished his novel of an explanation, but nodded her head as he finished speaking. "Yes…you are right Damon, you're right about everything. I love how much you and Stefan love me and try to keep me safe. Deep down, I think I'm grateful that you're not afraid to take me in hand when I need to be kept in line. You definitely challenge me for the greater good…but it doesn't mean I hafta like it all."

Damon laughed while nodding his head in agreement. "I understand. And thank you, Elena, for trying to understand and see it through my perspective. I also promise I'll try and be less protective of you okay? But only a little bit…so don't take advantage of me in that area, or else-well…you know what'll happen."

Elena groaned at the unspoken warning. "Yes, I knooow Damon we've established enough what you'll do to me next time I defy you and Stefan or if I endanger myself. Jeez, God wasn't kidding when he sent me my guardian angel was he?"

Damon grinned while nodding his head enthusiastically, "You're damn right He wasn't kidding! But calling me an angel is almost laughable, so let's just say that I'm more than just a guardian angel, I'm an angel with a friggin shotgun! And don't you forget it."

"Isn't that a song?" Elena asked playfully.

"What if it is? It describes me perfectly." Damon replied with a hint of his smug self.

Elena merely shook her head and made a move to get up, but hissed when full pressure was applied to her bottom again. "Damooon, I don't think I'll be able to sit for a couple of days thanks to your handy work." She whined while quickly lying back down in his arms, relieved at the change in position.

"Awww poor baby." Damon crooned with mock sympathy. "Well you could always lose the pants and let it heal naturally with the cool air flowing through the house?"

"DAMON!" Elena scolded while smacking him again. He held his hands up in surrender while smiling at her reaction. "Just a suggestion."

"Stop ruining this moment and shut your trap. I just want to close my eyes for a minute, they hurt from the all the crying."

"Okay okay you win…" Damon replied before going back to tenderly stroking her hair once more.

Oh how I wish you were mine Elena….I would always keep you safe. I love you so much…I wish you could love me back.

Damon planted another tender kiss upon Elena's forehead, wishing they could freeze this moment for eternity. Not wanting to mourn over the wishful thoughts in his head, he reached over and switched Elena's radio on.

Within the next few minutes, Elena and Damon had both unexpectedly fallen asleep as a beautiful song by 'Lady Antebellum' flowed throughout the room and into their dreams.

"So lay here beside me just hold me and don't let go
This feelin' I'm feelin' is somethin' I've never known
And I just can't take my eyes off you
And I just can't take my eyes off you"

THE END