Damon slept. He was always grateful for the respite, the brief break from the day to day drama that was their lives. He looked forward to his dreams, as his subconscious mercifully took him through the better parts of his existence, avoiding the horrors and tragedies of his 180 odd years. He was reminded enough during his waking hours, thank you very much.

Sometimes he dreamt of growing up with Stefan, of a time when they were brothers and friends. Of simplicity and peace. And he dreamt of Katherine, as he had thought of her when he was human. Of the love he had thought they shared. But mostly, he dreamt of Elena. Her eyes, her mouth, her skin and hands. Her beautiful smile, her precious laugh. He dreamt of the first time he'd met her in the road, when he'd compelled her to forgot. The way she'd looked, so lost and sad, in the cemetery her first day junior year. Meeting her again, and feeling that connection, that instant spark that he'd tried to convince himself was only because of her resemblance to Katherine. Watching her with Stefan as he himself fell in love with her, becoming her friend against all odds. He dreamt of the summer they'd spent, side by side, searching for his idiot brother. Then of their stolen moments once Stefan was back in the fold. Their first real kiss, on her porch, her lips so soft under his. Then she became a vampire, and he thought she'd chosen him. But it turned out she was sire bound to him, and he let her go, told her to stay away from him, that he didn't want her. It was the right thing to do.

But she broke the bond. This was his favorite memory, sleeping or awake. The day he looked up and saw her standing there, eyes flashing and a smug little smile on her lips. It shouldn't have been possible, the sire bond meant she was supposed to do what he told her would make him happy. And he had told her he would be happy to never see her again. He'd been convincing in his lie, he'd had Stefan, Caroline, Bonnie, even Jeremy and Matt feed her stories about how he was so happy now, living life free of her. But there she was, she'd tracked him to Italy and she was standing there, just staring.

He knew immediately she wasn't Katherine. Katherine had never had such light in her eyes. He'd stuttered incoherently as she'd walked toward him, and then he'd had his arms full of the love of his existence, and nothing else had mattered. As it turned out, love was the answer, cheesy as that sounds. If the vampire bound to his or her sire was truly, purely in love with that sire, those feelings would win out over the bond. Elena had been able to break the bond because she loved him. For real.

It was one of the best days of his life.

As dreams do, his skipped ahead to the day he'd asked her, in front of her brother and his, to be his wife. The smile on her face as she'd yes. The day she walked toward him, a vision in creamy white, and had chosen to be bound to him in a very human way. A thousand memories of a life that, despite the constant drama and danger, was filled with endless amounts of love and laughter.

He felt himself begin to wake, and the dreams began to fade. His mind drifted in between as he felt soft fingers brush his cheek and feather light kisses trail down his throat, across his collarbone, down his chest. The fingers moved to scratch at his nipples, the mouth began to leave quick nips and bites as it came closer to its destination. He felt her breath ghost over his skin as she let out a throaty laugh.

"I know you're awake," she said, voice husky.

He smiled a little, but kept his eyes firmly closed. "No I'm not."

She laughed again, and the sweet sound of it made his heart squeeze in his chest. "Too bad. If you're sleeping, how are you going to enjoy this?"

"Enjoy…" he was cute off by her mouth-her amazing, fantastic mouth-closing over his morning erection. She wasted no time, taking him in until he hit the back of her throat , then sliding her lips slowly back up the length of his shaft. Finding it impossible to form a coherent thought, let alone words, Damon fisted his hands in the sheets of their bed and rode on the sensations.

She showed him no mercy as she used lips, teeth and tongue to bring him to the edge, only to pull back just as his world was about to implode.

"What the.." he almost opened his eyes, but then he felt her move over him. His hands came up to grip her hips as she straddled his thighs. When she sank down onto his now painfully throbbing penis, his grip tightened so he knew there'd be bruises if she were still human.

In direct contrast to before, she took her time, moving her body slowly, torturously, with his. Every time he thought she'd found a rhythm she would change. From languid slides to quick little jerks, to sensuous rolls of her hips, he was beginning to think her goal here was to drive him truly and utterly insane.

After what seemed an eternity, she leaned back, placing her hands on his thighs, and began to ride him in earnest. Their moans filled the rooms, accompanied by the sounds of flesh against flesh and the groaning of the bed springs. She rocked her hips, faster, faster, and when he felt her rhythm begin to falter he bent his knees and used his hips and hands to drive into her hard, then harder. She came in a screaming rush, and the feel of her, so hot, so wet already, clamping down on his cock brought his own orgasm in a dizzying pulse of black and red.

Sweaty and exhausted, she collapsed onto his chest. Damon managed to find the strength to wrap his arms around her before they both succumbed to the oblivion.

Damon woke in rumbled sheets, the sticky mess drying on his thighs. Sighing, he climbed out of the bed and made his way into the shower. He could still smell her in here, where her shampoo and body wash sat in their proper place on the ledge. He lingered in the shower as he always did, enjoying the steam and the quiet.

But of course, he couldn't stay there forever. He had things to do, and someone who was expecting him. So he put on clothes, and changed his sheets. He drank his breakfast and managed to avoid his brother.

His first stop of the day was the liquor store, where he bought her favorite wine. Then the sweets shop to pick up the cordial cherries she loved so much, the flower shop to buy her pink lilies. He had her old teddy bear under one arm as he made his way to her.

He found her, like always, in the shade of an old elm tree. Sitting beside her he poured them both a glass of wine.

"Hello darling." He said quietly "I'm sorry I took so long, but as you can see I had a few things to pick up along the way." He took a sip of wine as he stared into the distance. "It wasn't very nice you know, leaving me all alone in our bed. You know how much I hate waking up alone. And I had to shower all by myself too. What kind of wife does that make you? Leaving your husband to fend for himself like that? You shouldn't have left me alone."

She didn't answer him, not that he'd really expected her too, and he fell silent as he sat next to her, sipping the wine and stealing some of her cherries.

He lost track of the time as he sat there, but when the first cold flake touched his cheek he looked up at the sky. "It's almost Christmas you know. Caroline's going to want to decorate the Boarding House again. Maybe this year I'll let her. Jeremy's coming home in a few days, and before you start to worry, I've already stocked the pantry with plenty of human food. I promised you I'd take care of him, didn't I?" He twisted his daylight ring as he murmured "You made me promise."

Shaking his head, he stood. "It's time to go, but I'll be back soon. I'm taking Teddy with me, but I'll bring him when I visit." Leaning down, he kissed the frozen marble of the gravestone. "I love you Elena. Always."