Merry Christmas, everyone!

Internet, this is my gift to you on this special day.

Disclaimer : I don't own the vampire diaries.

A/N: So this is another take on what happens after 4x09. As unrealistic and silly as the first, but in a different way. Still unapologetic Steroline though. It's starts pretty much the same way, but uhm...things escalate quickly. Hope you'll like it!

He threw the chess set across the room, and then turned eyes, as black as night, on her.

"How long have you known?"

His voice was angry. He wasn't himself, and Caroline wasn't about to take shit from anybody, even a Rippery Stefan. No, she wouldn't just sit here and flinch like a girly little thing. She stood up, ready to defend herself if the need came.

She wasn't sure what he was asking about exactly, but either way she had already said too much.

"Does it matter?"

He shrugged and kicked the wooden table.

"Stefan, I told you because I respect you and think you deserve to know. I get that you're angry but please, can we sat down and talk about it like adults? I'm sure you could use a drink."

He didn't react.

"Here," she said, taking a step toward the Scotch.

But he was faster than her, and in an instant he smashed the bottle of scotch at her feet, alcohol soaking her ballet flat and the skin of her bare legs, while scattering shards of glass at her feet.

"I don't want a fucking drink, Caroline."

"Don't take it out on me, I'm on your side, remember?"

He sighed and turned away.

"I know, I know."

He tried to take soothing breaths but the pain and the rage were only growing. He growled and threw the closest thing-a lamp-at the bookshelves. He heard Caroline hiss, but he just kept going, breaking wood, glass and whatever shit he could get his hands on, in a blind rage.

Everything just kept snapping between his fingers. He wasn't sure why, but the echo was bittersweet.

Caroline's usually so-soft hand caught his arm firmly.

"Stefan stop," she said in a hush-velvet voice contrasting with her iron-grip.

He wanted to, but he just wasn't sure he could.

She put her other hand on his back and tried to rub calming circles. It felt too nice, too intimate and somehow it made him angrier. He grabbed her and tossed her at the broken bookshelves.

She looked at him with surprised-wide blue eyes that broke his heart even more. He felt so much shame at the disappointment he saw there. But it disappeared when the look vanished instantly as she took a hold of herself, putting her game face on and her head high. She stood up straighter, ready for a fight. All dressed in white, she looked both furious and angelic.

"I'm on your side Stefan. I'm here to help you, and I'm really trying but apparently I'm not doing it right. So if it's a fight you want, I'm ready to give you one. I had a shit day too. My kinda-boyfriend, who may-or-may-not be cheating on me and had us imprisoned today, may-or-may-not have committed suicide, my best friend is sire-bond to my ex-kinda-rapist and has been brain-washed into thinking she's in love with him in a way that may-or-may-not be bringing back bad memories, I let you guess. Oh, and my other best friend whom I loved to death is really hurting right now, which makes me hurt too, mostly because he just manhandled me!"

"I'm sorry Caroline," he growled.

"No you're not. But once we've fought the rage out of your system, you will be."

"You're serious about that? Because you're not the only one who had a shit day."

"Bring it on."

He launched himself at her, at full vampire speed, but she managed to duck him and he crashed into the bookshelves. She pined him against what was left of the wooden shelves but not for long. He regained control and reversed the roles, pressing her in the exact same spot she had him moments ago. She struggled but he just pressed closer to strengthen his hold on her.

"What now?" he asked, trying to sound bored.

She smiled suggestively. "You tell me."

He was stunned for a minute and she thought he was going to blush when he realized their closeness and the position in which he had her. She almost laughed at the way he looked at her, her hands hold by his high above her head, her wild hair and her breasts pushed up against him by their position.

It was all the distraction she needed. In a flash, she grabbed nearby books and hurled them at him. In a reflex, he stepped back and that was enough for Caroline to launch herself at him and pine him on the floor. Her hold was stronger this time around and she felt pretty confidant she had win.

The rush from the adrenaline and her victory was making her lightheaded and she almost giggled when she lowered her head to his.

"So what now?" she said exulting with glee as she echoed his words.

He just stared again, but there was nothing embarrassed in his eyes anymore. Only hunger.

She was pretty sure she blushed even though it was impossible for a vampire.

"Stefan," she started, not sure what to say.

But it didn't matter because he didn't leave her time to finish. He kissed her. Sweet, lips against lips, tentative. It felt awkward and heartfelt and it tasted like Hope and early spring morning. It was everything a first kiss should be and that, in itself, was disconcerting. Because it shouldn't have felt so right. They were both in love with other people, weren't they? They were friends, just friends, mentor and sober coach, they were Stefan and Caroline. There shouldn't have been anything romantic between them. Attraction, sure maybe. It had always been lurking between them, but nothing more than that. And friendship, and trust and deep mutual admiration. OK, maybe on some level it made sense, thought Caroline. Because it felt like checkmate and kismet at the same time.

And soon the kiss changed, the tension from the earlier fight, still thick in the air, came down on them and heated up their actions. The kiss got more pressing, greedy and passionate. He put his hand flat against the soft sliver of skin exposed between her waistband and shirt. Just as he did so, he got hungry for more and with his other hand he pressed her up more tightly against him. She let him do quite happily and even whimpered when she felt him there before pressing closer. She wanted to feel him everywhere, and the sheer intensity of her desire for him was dizzying.

But she couldn't let herself be ruled by her desires.

"Stefan, are you sure? You're confused right now, you don't know what you're doing."

"I'm sure. I may not be thinking straight but this feels right Caroline."

She nodded, because it did.

"You want this too, right?"

"Yes," she said, breathing heavily because dear god, yes, she wanted it bad.

She did have this rule about not sleeping with any more of Elena's exes because it was bad for her self-esteem but rules were meant to be broken. Plus, he looked so hot right now. Eyes both hungry and pleading, ready to devour and be devoured.

So she gave him a devouring kiss, and he responded in kind.

It's not love, but there is soul and passion. More than they know what to do with, and it's a spiral of sighs, touch and oh yes, and please, and bodies connecting, and pleasure. It's trust, discovering each other and knowing each other instantly. It's her smile, so bright against his skin as she kisses every inch of it. It's the passion, and tender, religious care he takes when he undresses her and enters her for the first time. She loves that he is smiling too.

And soon he makes her forget everything but his smile.


Looking at the ceiling of the Salvatore house, and waiting for that awful-bound-to-happen-moment after sex when it would all become awkward.

"You know you're my best friend, right?" she said.

He didn't, and he felt a surge of warmth spread in his body at her words.

"And you know this was really bad sex, right?"

This time he had to laugh. It was the best sex he had since—since Katherine 1864, right before he was changed. Elena didn't count, it was making love. He stopped staring at the ceiling and turned to her in time to catch the satisfied broad grin playing on her lips.

"Yeah, how bad was it?" he asked, conscious but not caring that his own smile was probably very cheesy and smug.

"Very bad," she said, batting her eyelashes at him. "I think, for both of our sakes, that we ought to try again, and do our best to be better this time."

He laughed again, a carefree laugh that almost matched her gleeful giggles. He rolled her on top of him and kissed the soft path down her beautiful neck.

"If we ought to," he said and he smiled against her skin.

He can't help it, she makes him happy.