A/N: I'm aware they're slightly (ok, very) OOC in this, but this is just me having a bit of smutty fun, so I decided it was ok :) And yes, I tend to get rid of Tyler quite easily in my stories, sorry to all the fans out there, I have nothing against his character, but he gets in the way of Klaroline fun and this cannot be tolerated.
Since this is another post-4x09 story, I struggled to finish it before tonight's episode, which means I didn't pay as much attention to editing as I should have, sorry for any mistake.
Rated M for language and sexual situation.
As always, reviews greatly appreciated :D
Disclaimer: if you recognize it, it doesn't belong to me.
On another note, what's this I hear about a possible Originals spin-off with JoMo that would NOT include Klaroline? They can't do that… Can they? *teary pout*
She shouldn't be here. It's wrong for so many reasons... Not the least of which being that she wants to be here.
But these reasons don't matter.
Because she also needs to be here.
This isn't about right or wrong.
This is about survival.
And right now, survival is all that matters.
It's not like she has a choice. Well, she does. She could choose to die instead. She just really doesn't want to consider this possibility.
She takes a deep unneeded breath and knocks.
Only to instantly find herself backed up against a wall, a powerful hand wrapped around her throat so tightly that weren't she a vampire, she would be dead in minutes.
Her eyes widen and she opens her mouth to try and speak, but she doesn't get the chance.
"Tell me why I shouldn't kill you."
His hold on her loosens just enough for her to get the words out.
"If you wanted me dead, I'd be dead by now."
It's not exactly an answer since she's not entirely sure why he hasn't staked her yet, but it's all she has.
It seems to be enough.
He releases her and takes a step back. She almost collapses without his painful grip keeping her upright, but she manages to stay on her feet and even to keep her hand from unnecessarily rubbing her sore throat. It would mean showing a weakness, and she's going to be doing enough of that in the next few minutes.
"Why are you here?"
"I need your help."
A sharp bark of laughter escapes him at that. She can't blame him. The last time she saw him, she was – again – acting as a distraction while her friends did everything in their power to kill him. The idea that she would now come to him for help is ludicrous. She's well aware of that. But she can't turn to anyone else. And though she knows he will most certainly turn her down, she has to try. She just has to.
Part of it is his fault.
He's the reason survival is so important to her. Well, not him, exactly, but his words. She never wanted to die, but she hadn't realized just how badly she wanted to live until he saved her on her birthday.
"And why would I want to help you?"
As much as she told herself that she was ready for it, the lack of endearment hurts just as much as the harshness of his voice. Still, she doesn't let it show. Instead she gives him a hopeful smile.
"Out of the goodness of your heart?"
His only answer is a raised eyebrow. Yeah… She didn't have much hope for that one. She sighs and decides to lay it all out in the open. Honesty is the only thing that's ever worked for her when it comes to him.
"Ok look, I'm sorry about what I did. I didn't really want you to die, but I felt I didn't have a choice. And frankly, if I can forgive you for Carol's murder, you can forgive me for that."
She thinks she sees a flash of surprise cross his face, but it's gone too quickly for her to be sure. She wonders if it's her apology or her forgiveness that surprised him – provided he is, in fact, surprised.
"What do you need my help with?"
It's her turn to be surprised. She thought he was going to push the 'I have no reason to help you' issue, not get right down to the point of her visit. But that's fine with her. Whatever he decides won't be because of something she said anyway. His mind is already made up before she's even told him what she wants from him or tried to convince him, she's sure of it. She just doesn't know what it is he's decided.
"I want you to teach me how to fight."
She gives an incredulous snort. After the number of times she's been tortured, kidnapped and almost killed this past year alone, does he really need to ask?
"I meant why me?" he clarifies.
Oh. Well that's easy too.
"You're the most powerful person I know."
Plus the Salvatores are kind of busy with the whole sire bond/Damon slept with Elena situation, and she doesn't want to burden Stefan with this anyway, violence is not something he needs to be around right now. And Tyler's still MIA. It's not like she knows that many people who could teach her how to take down a vampire, or a vampire hunter, or a werewolf, or a council member armed with vervain, or any of those creatures that seem so keen on ending her existence.
"What's in it for me?"
She wants to tell him that not only will he get to spend time with her, it will also help keep her safe, but she doesn't. Those are incentives that might have worked before her betrayal. Now, she's not so sure her safety or being around her are so high on his list of priorities. So she shrugs and decides to go with honesty again.
"Nothing. But it wouldn't be much of an inconvenience either. I mean, no matter how strong or skilled I get, it's not like I'll ever be a threat to you."
Because she's all too aware of the fact that he could rip her heart out before she even knew what his intentions were. She had almost forgotten just how dangerous he is until she saw the bodies in the woods a few weeks ago.
He seems to consider this for a moment. She's waiting for him to refuse and send her on her way. He doesn't owe her anything, and he's looking at her with such contempt…
"Be here tomorrow at dawn."
She's so shocked that she just gapes at him. It takes his almost magical disappearance for her to regain her senses. Looking around, she realizes that he just left her alone in a huge, cold, empty room and she shakes her head as she makes her way to the door.
Tomorrow should be interesting.
He should have said no.
He would have, if they were humans.
But they're not.
What he told her over a year ago still stands. As vampires, they have to adjust their perception of time. And while his rage usually gets the better of him and makes him act impulsively sometimes, he can also think long-term.
It would have been easy to kill her when he had her pressed against the wall. Too easy. She was powerless against him. Always will be. But she doesn't have to be powerless against others. If he ever decides that he wants her dead, he will be the one to kill her.
He conveniently ignores the fact that if he doesn't want her dead right now, after everything she's done, then he never will. Just like he conveniently ignored the overwhelming relief that almost brought him down to his knees when she told him what she wanted from him. Knowing that she will be that much harder to kill after a few weeks of training with him is… Reassuring.
It shouldn't be. He shouldn't care. He shouldn't have cared before and he certainly shouldn't care now, after she tried to kill him.
But he does.
The word echoes in his mind and he lets out a low, angry growl followed by a resigned sigh.
It's not like he can deny it any longer.
She's a weakness and he should get rid of her. Yet he's not going to. He wants – no, needs – to know where this is going. Needs to know why she came to him in spite of everything. Why she wasn't scared to death when he had her pinned against that wall. Why she would even consider forgiving him for what he did to Carol Lockwood.
There's still too much he doesn't understand about her. These training sessions will be a good opportunity to learn.
For the first time in a long time, he's looking forward to tomorrow.
"Is this our thing?" she asks when he has her pinned against a wall less than a second after she knocked on the door, his forearm almost crushing her throat.
He smirks and releases her.
"So we have a thing now?"
She scowls, but he can see she's fighting the urge to smile. Her hands run over her outfit, smoothing it out after he so rudely manhandled her, making a point of showing him that she's more annoyed than afraid.
"What was that for?"
"Just testing out your reflexes."
He can't believe that she has to ask. She didn't even try to get him off her.
"Yeah, well, that's because I knew I wasn't in any real danger."
He lifts an eyebrow at that. It's true, he wouldn't have agreed to help her just to kill her less than a day later, but there's a loophole in her reasoning.
"What about yesterday?" he asks because she couldn't have been sure that he wasn't going to kill her then and she still didn't react when he attacked her.
"You took me by surprise."
"That's my point. Your enemies aren't going to give you a fair warning. Lesson number one, sweetheart: you're always in danger."
There's a flash of something in her eyes, something that has nothing to do with this particular lesson, something he can't quite decipher, and it takes a while for him to understand what she just reacted to.
He's made a point of dropping the nicknames after he realized she had been playing him for weeks, months.
He blames the slipup on habits.
When she nods seriously, he can see that she's now in student mode.
"So what's lesson number two?"
He motions for her to follow him and leads her to the back of the mansion. They step out in the woods surrounding his home and she looks at him curiously.
"I'm not exposing my furniture to the dangers of vampire/hybrid fighting," he explains.
He knows that it makes sense, so it's only logical that she accepts his explanation as the truth. But it's only a partial truth. He has another reason for wanting to take their lessons here. The risks of her being attacked are higher when she's alone in the woods, and he wants her to learn how to use the environment to her advantage. This rock can be a weapon. This tree a hiding place. This ditch a convenient trap. She also needs to learn how to recognize the dangers. As a regular vampire, she's vulnerable to wooden stakes, which means that every single branch in this bloody forest could be used against her. The thought bothers him more than he's willing to admit.
She has her back turned to him, taking in the beauty of the sunrise through the leaves. In a flash, he's right behind her and he has her in a chokehold, keeping her against him with one arm around her throat and the other around her waist, trapping her arms, intentionally bending her body back so that even if she thought about it, she couldn't bend forward and throw him over her shoulder.
Knowing that he's testing her again, she instantly starts struggling, but he's too strong for her and he just tightens his hold, calmly asking her, "What do you do now?"
She doesn't answer with words. Instead, she rises to the challenge. She suddenly slams her head back and the pain as he feels his nose explode under the impact momentarily blinds him. His tongue darts out to lick the blood off his upper lip. Yet it's still not enough and she groans in protest.
"That's cheating! Anyone else would have released me after that."
He holds her tighter in retaliation, to the point where he knows he's hurting her. It's not like he wants to – ok, maybe a little, sadistic, vengeful part of him is glad to hear her sharp intake of breath, but that's only because he's still not completely over her betrayal – but she needs to understand what's at stake here.
"You asked for my help. Not anyone else's. My rules."
She can't nod, so she sighs.
"Fine," she relents. "So what do I do?"
"You do the opposite of what's expected of you. In this position, an assailant will expect you to try and move forward. It's only natural; you want to get away from him. But you can't because he's stronger than you, he knows what he's doing, and he knows how you're going to react. So…"
"I move backwards instead," she finishes for him.
Before he has time to approve, she uses her feet as an anchor in the ground and pushes with all her vampire strength, sending them both flying backwards. His back hits a trunk, and the shock makes him loosen his grip for a fraction of a second. She takes advantage of it, slipping out of his grasp and turning around to face him, beaming. He can't help but smile a little at her obvious pleasure, but he keeps his voice stern.
"Well done. You've managed to anger your opponent even more."
"At least I can move now," she points out.
"True. But don't make the mistake of thinking it's over just because you had one lucky shot."
"Two," she instantly counters. "I want some credit for that broken nose."
He rolls his eyes at that.
"Right. Because arguing with your enemy is going to help you get rid of him."
"We're just training. You're not my enemy."
They both stiffen at her words and he stares at her, too stunned to say anything. It's the first time she's ever admitted that she doesn't see him as an adversary. Sure, he suspected that she trusted him to some extent, she wouldn't have come to him otherwise, but it's still unexpectedly nice to hear it. He's desperately trying not to read too much into it when she uncomfortably shifts her weight from one foot to the other and adds, "I mean, not today. Right?"
Her voice sounds hopeful and he knows exactly what she wants to hear. Never.
He doesn't say it though. After everything that's happened, he can't promise her that they'll never be on opposite sides again, and promises are not something he takes lightly. So he just gives her a single nod, noting the brief disappointment on her face, and the moment passes.
"Let's try that again, shall we?"
She turns her back to him in agreement, and he resumes their position. And tries not to enjoy it too much.
"Hey, where have you been?"
Caroline shrugs as she slides into the booth next to Elena.
"I had stuff to do."
Though she usually tries to hide it because she knows how selfish it is given everything that Elena and Bonnie have been going through lately, she tends to get irritated when her supposedly best friends don't pick up on her mood swings or don't react when she's obviously trying to hide something from them. But today, as the conversation instantly moves on to other topics – read the Salvatores – Caroline is incredibly glad that she's not the centre of attention. She couldn't have put up with a thorough questioning. Not when a shower wasn't enough to rid herself of today's session with Klaus.
Her body is practically humming with power, with the need to move, with the feeling that she can take on the world and, yes, with sexual tension.
She knew when she showed up on his doorstep three weeks ago that there was a chance this might happen. She's always denied having feelings for him, but physical attraction is something she can quite easily admit to herself. And he's made his own interest clear enough.
So yeah, she knew she was playing with fire, but she needed his help, and she thought she could handle it.
And she can.
It's just that… Well… It's not all there is to it.
She trusts herself not to jump him, no matter how hot he is or how compromising some of their training positions are. She's worked hard to grow out of this insecure teenager who was so desperate for attention that she ended up in bed with Damon Salvatore of all people, and she doesn't want to make that mistake with Klaus.
What's getting harder to ignore are those other feelings.
The gratitude when he told her that he wouldn't have let Tyler hurt her, and again when he kept her from making a scene at the Miss Mystic Falls Pageant.
The hope that he's not helping her out of boredom or whatever, but because he actually wants her to be able to defend herself.
The pride when he congratulates her on a well-executed move.
The warmth when his gaze softens at something she does or says or even just thinks – because he knows her that well.
The peace of mind when they walk back to the mansion together and talk enough that she forgets about all the horrible things he's done, and about all the horrible things she's done, and she's just herself, a young woman listening to an incredibly smart man who's actually interested in her opinions and questions when he tells her about some of the places he's visited.
Her head snaps up at her name, but judging by Elena and Bonnie's expressions, it's not their first attempt at catching her attention.
"Are you alright?"
"Yeah. Just spaced out for a minute, sorry. What were we talking about?"
Her friends exchange a worried glance, but choose not to comment, instead staring at a point behind her, signaling her that she should turn around. She does and groans when she sees Damon at the bar. And he's heading towards them.
"I was saying, I don't feel like dealing with guys problems right now and we should make our escape," Elena says.
Caroline nods with a little too much enthusiasm, and they all get up and leave right before he reaches their table. Of course, they've only taken two steps outside before he's in front of them.
"Leaving so soon, ladies?"
Caroline and Bonnie both roll their eyes but Elena gives him a small smile, which makes her friends roll their eyes harder.
"You two go ahead, I'll catch up with you later."
It all happens in a blur. One second she's walking away with Bonnie, the next it's as if she's been hit by a truck and slammed into a brick wall.
The others haven't even begun to process what's happening when her knee instinctively jerks up, catching her assailant in the groin, and her elbow slams down hard on his neck once he's bent over in pain. Only then does she recognize him and she almost laughs, but she remembers his lessons and she doesn't lose her focus. When he recovers, she's ready for the next attack and she swiftly steps out of the way, avoiding the metallic stake aimed at her heart. He manages not to run into the wall he had her pressed against just a second before, but just barely, and when he comes at her again, she extends her arm in the air, neck high, and braces herself for the impact. He's strong and fast, so she falls with him, but she did enough damage to him to be proud of herself. Not to mention he dropped his weapon. Out of the corner of her eyes, she notices that the others have gotten over their initial shock and are coming to her rescue, so she shouts "Don't!" and they freeze in place once again, unsure what to do. She gives them a bright smile to put their minds at ease.
Klaus takes advantage of her distraction to pin her to the ground and she lets out an indignant "Hey!" at his sneakiness – she was technically protecting him from her friends – momentarily forgetting what he taught her about people who fight fair: they die.
She struggles to get out from under him, but she's trapped. He's positioned himself on her thighs so that she can't move her legs, and he has her arms in a firm grip next to her head.
"Not bad, love. Too bad you let yourself get distracted."
She glares at him and he chuckles, getting off her and extending a hand to help her up. She doesn't think twice about taking it and she stands next to him, brushing off her clothes for longer than is strictly necessary in order to avoid her friends' questioning looks for a few extra seconds. When she does look up, she sees that they look about ready to kill Klaus. And to be honest, so is she.
She knows why he did it. All part of his 'always be ready for an attack' speech. He wanted to make sure that she would know how to react when attacked at the least likely moment: in full daylight, outside the Grill, chatting with her friends, wearing impractical high heels. But it doesn't mean that she has to like it. Especially not when she sees how confused her friends are. She sighs and gives him a murderous look, making it clear that he'll pay for that later, before turning her attention back to Bonnie, Damon and Elena.
"It's alright guys. Klaus is just helping me."
Another glare in his direction on the word helping, and he has the audacity to laugh at her. Ok, not laugh outright, but his eyes are sparkling with mischief and his left cheek is slightly more hollow than usual, and she knows it's because he's biting it on the inside to keep the smile off his face. He doesn't quite succeed. She would find it endearing if she wasn't so mad at him.
"Helping you?!" Bonnie shrieks. "He just assaulted you!"
Before she can explain, it's Damon's turn to speak.
"And by the way, where did those moves come from, Blondie? That was… Oh."
Realization dawns on his face. She's not surprised he's the first one to put the pieces together. Given how fast the fight took place, Bonnie hasn't seen anything, only vampire eyes could have followed it. And while she's taken some self-defense lessons herself, Elena probably hasn't recognized how professional and efficient Caroline's moves were. Damon however is another matter. He knows that only last month, she wouldn't have had the right reflexes when put in a situation like that. And he saw the way she braced herself when she knew that she was going to go down with Klaus.
Her two friends still seem confused and Caroline sighs. There's gonna be hell to pay for this.
"He's been teaching me how to fight."
Klaus takes Elena's exclamation as his cue to leave, and Caroline glares at the empty spot beside her long after he's gone.
He smirks when he hears the anger in her voice and in the way she's pounding on the wooden panel. This is going to be fun. He takes his time walking down the stairs that lead to the front door, knowing that the wait will make her even more furious. Although she may be furious enough already. It's been over an hour since he abandoned her with her friends. He swings the door open, if only to save it from her wrath, and braces himself for the punch that he's sure is coming his way.
She flings herself at him and crashes her lips to his.
This is not what he was expecting. Not that he's complaining or anything.
He recovers quickly enough considering how taken aback he is, and his arms wrap around her, trapping her against him just in case she suddenly realizes what she's doing and tries to pull away. Apparently, he doesn't need to worry about that, because her tongue is now begging for an entrance he's more than happy to grant.
She moans into his mouth and he knows he's lost.
In the blink of an eye, he has her pinned against the wall – perhaps it is their thing – one hand running down her side and resting against her hip while the other tangles in her hair, angling her head back to deepen the kiss. She responds instantly, her tongue battling with his, fighting him for dominance, and he's briefly reminded of how long it's been since a woman has even tried to match him this way.
Too. Bloody. Long.
Her hands leave his shoulders to sneak under his shirt, and the feeling of warm fingers against his stomach suddenly brings him back to reality.
They shouldn't be doing this.
They've been fighting it successfully for three weeks now. Longer, to be honest, but the past three weeks have really put his self-control to the test, what with their bodies being pressed together for hours on end every single day. And he knows it's been the same for her.
So why did she snap now, when they weren't even in the same room until she basically attacked him?
It doesn't make sense.
It takes all of his willpower to tear his lips away from hers. He's about to ask her what she's doing, but her mouth is now at his throat, sucking on his pulse point, and one of her legs wraps itself around his ass, bringing their lower bodies closer together, and the mere idea of thinking flies out the window.
Part-plea, part-question, the single word is the only thing that makes any kind of sense in his mind right now. Her only response is a low purr against his throat that sends what little blood was still north straight down and his hips give a little jerk forward.
This is going too far.
He needs to know what's happening.
Well, he's pretty sure he knows what is happening. It's the why he's concerned about.
He takes a step back and places his hands firmly on her shoulders, literally holding her at arm's length. She whimpers in protest and he almost gives in when his eyes travel down to her swollen lips, but he manages to take a deep, calming breath and articulate a few coherent words.
"What are you doing?"
He's expecting a snarky comeback or another kiss as an attempt to distract him from his questions. What he gets is a defeated sigh when she realizes that he's not going to give in without some kind of explanation and she leans back against the wall, closing her eyes for a second while she regains her senses. He both sees and hears her swallow hard, as if she's gathering her courage, and then her posture straightens and she slowly pushes his hands off her shoulders.
She opens her eyes to look at him. There's one last hesitation, and then…
"I want you."
He narrows his eyes at her suspiciously, waiting for her to elaborate. When she doesn't, he frowns.
"Yes, I got that from the way you just wrapped yourself around me. What I don't get is…"
"Don't," she interrupts, her voice sounding oddly small now. "Please, Klaus, just…"
Her voice trails off as she struggles to find the right words and he runs his hand through his hair in an uncharacteristic display of helplessness.
This is exactly why he stopped her. Anyone else and he would assume they were just horny. But this is Caroline, and if it was about nothing more than physical release, he can – reluctantly – think of about a dozen men that would be better for her than him. Men she's not supposed to hate, men that wouldn't bring disastrous consequences with them, men that wouldn't cause a rift between her and her friends.
But she's here with him because what she needs isn't just a quick shag. There's something emotional going on here, something that she's hoping to forget about, something she thinks he can help her with.
And he won't let her fool herself into thinking that sleeping with him is going to make things better. If anything, it's going to make everything worse.
"Tell me what happened."
"Do I have to?"
"Not really. I can guess most of it. You friends gave you a hard time about spending time with me, let alone trusting me. They didn't believe you when you told them there was nothing going on here. And you decided that if they were going to think the worst of you anyway, you might as well go ahead and make this mistake. How am I doing so far?"
She lets out a small, humorless laugh and crosses her arms over her chest.
"A little too well for my liking."
There's some genuine amusement in his smile, but it's mostly just sad.
"I'm not going to be your mistake, Caroline. I want you, don't ever doubt that, but I won't come between you and your friends."
"That's very selfless of you," she says with a touch of wonder in her voice.
"I can assure you it's anything but."
She frowns, clearly not getting his meaning. That's okay, because he doesn't need her to understand. He's not even sure he wants her to understand. Not yet at least. The truth is, as much as he dislikes it, he knows she needs her friends. She's proven her loyalty to them more times than he can count. If he gives in to her moment of weakness and causes a fall out between them, she will end up blaming him. And he doesn't want that. What he has in mind for them is a little more… long-term, than revenge/desperate sex leading to an inevitably hateful separation.
"So, what you're saying is you've been pursuing me for over a year, but now that I'm right here, you're not going to have sex with me?" He just tilts his head to the side, never tearing his gaze away from hers. "I don't know if I should thank you or slap you."
"Neither," he replies instantly.
He doesn't want her gratitude, and if she slaps him, he doesn't trust himself not to retaliate. And if they start fighting, things could get out of hand very fast… One way or another.
"Look at it this way. What if this is our only chance?"
He raises his eyebrows at her matter-of-fact tone. Hm. She does have a point. As persistent and powerful as he is, he can't predict the future, and if he's honest with himself, he has to admit the odds are against them. Here she is, going after what she wants when she knows how wrong it is, and here he is, trying to be the reasonable one. Role reversal, anyone? Maybe he's rubbing off on her.
"We could be good together, you know," she adds, her voice suddenly much lower now that she's realized she might be winning this.
He chuckles at that. He does know. She's all fire and passion. He's all control and patience. And they're both equally demanding. The mix could be either disastrous or heavenly. He definitely knows what he'd put his money on, especially after that kiss. With a predatory smile, he leans down, seeing her eyes widen when she thinks he's going to kiss her, but he bypasses her lips, barely brushes her cheek in a soft caress and stops at her ear.
"Oh, sweetheart… Good doesn't even begin to cover it."
Even after pulling back, he can feel her shiver in response to both his husky voice and his words and he gives her a smug smile. She narrows her eyes at him, suspicious and irritated.
"Ok, don't say stuff like that if you're not going to follow through. Tease."
His eyebrows shoot up once again in amused surprise. He's been called many things in his long life, but this is certainly a first.
"What are you going to do about it?"
He didn't mean for it to sound like a challenge – ok, maybe he did – but given the way her eyes light up, it's clear that's how she took it.
That's not good.
Any hope he ever had of keeping the upper hand evaporates the second he sees her predatory grin.
Her hands move to the hem of her shirt, and he tries to keep his voice firm.
"Yes, Klaus?" she asks, her voice completely innocent.
Suddenly, her shirt is on the ground and she's standing in front of him in a pale green bra. This, he can handle. She's beautiful and he wants her, but he is a thousand years old, he's done and seen things she could never even imagine, it takes more than a topless woman to break his control. Even if the woman in question has had him completely under her spell for months.
"Are you trying to tease me back?"
Her fingers find the button of her jeans, pop it open and slide the zipper down. He clenches his fists by his sides to keep from reaching out and she gives him a sweet smile as she kicks off her shoes and slowly slides her jeans down her legs, stepping out of them and looking back at him.
"Then what are you doing?"
"Well, see… I came here to have sex with you. But you're not cooperating, and I have needs. Luckily for me, I'm a modern woman, and I know how to take care of… myself," she breathes as her hands brush against her breasts on their way to slide the straps down her arms.
He swallows hard, finally understanding where she's going with this. She wants him to come to her. She knows that if she just tries and kisses him again, he might find it in him to push her away again. Maybe. But she's not going to do that. She's going to make him lose control and she won't even have to touch him.
He would be impressed if he wasn't so busy worrying about the fact that it's working.
She bites her lip as her hands find the hook of her bra and she lets it fall to the ground, her movements deliberately slow. He's as still as a statue, his darkening eyes the only sign that he's affected by her little game, but it's obviously enough, for she smiles at him, her own blue orbs glistening in triumph. Oh, so she thinks she's won, does she?
"What now?" he asks in challenge.
He's rather confident. He's doing fine so far, and he's sure she's not going to take this any further, not without some kind of encouragement on his part.
She raises her eyebrows and he mentally curses himself.
A thousand years of running and fighting for survival and he's still making the mistake of underestimating an opponent. How sad is that? Granted, it's an odd kind of confrontation, but still, he should know better.
She lets one of her hands travel up her body, stroking her skin, and she tilts her head back to give herself better access as her fingers caress her neck right where it meets her shoulder. He hears a low moan, and he's honestly not sure if the sound came from her or from him. That's how much she affects him.
His pants are uncomfortably tight but still he doesn't move, even when her hand slides back down to cup her breast and she leans back against the wall with a tantalizing sigh. His fists are clenched so tightly that a few bones would probably break if he were human. She's teasing her nipple, never breaking eye contact, and the thought crosses his mind that thousand year-old hybrid or not, he's never seen anything as sexy as this blonde goddess pleasuring herself in front of him, knowing exactly what she's doing to him.
He realizes then that he's going to give in. It's been a long time coming, and she's clearly prepared to go as far as she needs to go to rob him of his control, there's no way he's going to be able to hold onto it for more than a few minutes. Not when he's been fantasizing about what she would feel like writhing beneath him for months.
He's going to…
"My hands feel so good, but they're too… soft. I need more."
He moves so fast that he knows she can't see him, yet she reacts instantly when his mouth is suddenly on hers. She wraps her arms around his neck and her legs around his waist, trapping him in her embrace as he devours her and rips her panties apart. He tears his lips away from hers to kiss a trail down her neck, following the invisible path her hand drew for him a few seconds ago. She lets out a whimper when his lips close around her nipple and his tongue darts out to taste her. The helpless sound drives him wild and his grip on her hips tighten.
He had been planning on torturing her for a while as payback, but the raw need in her voice ruins this plan and he pulls back just long enough to unbutton his pants while she rips his shirt open. He pauses for a fraction of a second, but it's apparently too long, because she takes matters in her own hands and lowers herself down on his length, slowly, deliberately, pausing when he's finally fully encased in her heat. Her mouth falls open and her eyes close as she lets her head rest against the wall behind her and mutters, "Took you long enough."
A laugh escapes him at that and she groans as the sensation echoes throughout her body. Answering her unspoken demand, he begins to move, his thrusts long and hard as she tightens her legs around him, her hands gripping his shoulders in an attempt to hold onto something, anything, that will help her meet him thrust for thrust.
"Fuck, that's… Yes."
He would be smiling smugly right now if he wasn't just as far gone as she is. It occurs to him that he's never seen her so out of control, and the thought breaks what little was left of his. He pounds harder into her, his movements faster and more erratic, and she moans in approval. He can feel her body shaking against his, desperately looking for an escape from all the tension, and suddenly he knows how he wants to help her get her release. He slows down, and she opens her eyes in protest.
She stops when she sees him tilt his head to the side, exposing his neck, his intentions clear. The veins around her eyes start reacting to the suggestion.
"Do it," he all but growls.
He expects some kind of argument, or at least questions, but either she trusts him or the need is too strong. She sinks her fangs in his neck just as he picks up his pace once again and he feels her shatter around him, the combination of sensations sending her over the edge. A few more thrusts as he helps her ride her orgasm and he's following her, his body going limp against hers.
They just hold onto each other as they both come down from their high. After a while, she slowly disentangles her legs from his waist and he helps her get her feet back on the ground, his hands never leaving her hips, hers never leaving his shoulders.
Her face is back to human, but there's blood around her mouth and he doesn't try to resist the urge to kiss her. When they pull apart, she smiles at him.
"Wow," he can't help but agree.
"That was… No, you know what? I'm not even going to try. I'm sure your ego doesn't need words."
He chuckles, and her smile widens before she steps away from him and bends down to retrieve her clothes from the floor. He frowns.
"What do you think you're doing?"
She looks confused and her answer comes out as a question.
"If you think I'm even close to being done with you, you're seriously mistaken."
She shivers at the threat/promise and he smirks, holding his hand out to lead her to his bedroom.
She wakes up to the sensation of warm fingers running up and down her bare back, and she slowly opens her eyes and rolls over, trying to figure out where she is and why she's feeling so… sated. She sits up with a jolt as everything comes back to her and her eyes widen in panic.
She slept with Klaus.
And loved every second of it.
She should be freaking out, shouldn't she?
She probably would if she were in her own bed. But the memory of Klaus softly asking her to stay the night soothes her nerves and she starts to relax. He seems to sense that she's not about to flight or punch him and in a flash, he has her pressed against the mattress and he kisses her deeply before pulling away. She can feel herself blush at the way he's looking at her. Which is ridiculous. After last night, there's really nothing that should embarrass her around him. Still, something about his intense stare and curiously sad smile doesn't sit right with her.
But it's gone quickly and his smile brightens when she raises her head to kiss him, never one to be outdone. She should stop this. She's pretty sure the temporary insanity excuse doesn't cover night-long activities. Or the morning after.
"There's something I have to do, love."
She sits back up, draping the sheet around her, his serious tone catching her attention. She frowns in confusion when he kneels in front of her so that they're now eye level. And then he cups her face in his hands and the intense look suddenly makes sense as the realization dawns on her.
She tries to back away, but he's quicker than her and he has her trapped against the bedframe before she can even think of standing up, his hands on either side of her head. She tries to push him away, but of course he's too strong. She tries to slip under his arm, but he catches her and pushes her back against the wooden frame, his grip firm but not painful. Knowing that she can't run away, she does the only thing she can think of to escape the fate he has in store for her. She squeezes her eyes shut. She hears him sigh as he softly strokes her cheek and murmurs, "I have to, sweetheart."
"No, you don't."
"Open your eyes."
"Caroline, please. Be reasonable."
She almost opens her eyes to glare at him at that, but she manages to fight her instinctive reaction and keeps them closed. Reasonable? He's telling her to be reasonable?
"Are you kidding me?! Klaus, don't do this."
He lets out another sigh.
"I'll wait all day if I have to. You're going to have to open your eyes at some point."
"Why are you doing this?" she asks, her voice both pleading and frightened.
"Because I love you."
Her eyes open in shock, and before she has time to react, she's looking deep into his dilated pupils.
"Look at me and don't run."
Damn him! It took him less than a second to take her will away. He hasn't really done anything wrong yet, but she can't fight him now and she hates him for it. She hates him doubly because she's still fully conscious of what's happening and there's nothing she can do about it. There's not much that scares her as much as compulsion does, being ripped of her free will and memories. She desperately tries to tear her gaze away, but his power is too strong. For heaven's sake, she can't even blink! And the thought suddenly appears in her mind, unbidden and unwanted but undeniably true. Her voice drops to a pained whisper with her realization.
"That's why you asked me to stay the night."
He knows she's been drinking vervain in order to build up a tolerance to it and to protect herself against compulsion. And he knows that she takes it every morning right before she leaves her house. It would have still been strong in her system last night, but it's been over 24 hours since her last dose. He's planned this. He's always planned on making her forget. That's why he gave in. He knew there would be no consequences.
He doesn't say a word, doesn't even try to deny it, and her whole world comes crumbling down around her. She's not sure why. She's always known how manipulative he can be, and she hadn't expected this to mean so much to her. But knowing that the only reason he wanted her here all night was so that he could make her forget… It hurts. Fuck, it hurts. Why does it hurt so much?
"I'm sorry, Caroline."
"For what?" she snaps, unable to contain her frustration. "For sleeping with me or for what you're about to do?"
"For falling in love with you."
She snorts and her defenses come back up, higher than ever. He doesn't love her. If he did, he wouldn't even consider doing this. But then why did he tell you? A nagging voice in the back of her mind points out. And she has to admit it's a good question. He's going to erase her memories of their time together anyway. It's not like his confession is going to be of any use to him in the future if she can't remember it. She frowns at her thoughts. Surely she's missing something. He has to have some kind of master plan at work. There's no way… Or maybe her mind is trying to protect her from something she can't handle. Infatuation she can deal with. Love is another matter entirely. It just can't be. But then… The gifts, the promises, the smiles, the protectiveness, the mere fact that she's still alive after she betrayed him, not to mention the way he's looking at her right now. What if…
"Wait a second… It's true, isn't it? You're telling the truth," she says softly, her voice filled with either panic or wonder, even she's not sure.
He gives her a small, self-depreciating smile.
"I've been known to do that every once in a while."
She's not sure how to say it without hurting him, and she idly wonders when not hurting him has become one of her priorities.
And it all becomes clear. In a flash, she understands where he's coming from. He wouldn't be doing this if she was in love with him, if he had any hope at all that her feelings for him were strong enough that she'd fight for what they have instead of ending up hating him when her friends inevitably find out and lecture her. He's trying to make things easier for them in the future, if they ever find each other again. Making sure they part with the memories of being sort of allies rather than doomed lovers. Making sure she'll give him a chance… In a year, or even in a century, the memory of his voice supplies in her head. It's selfish and twisted and plain wrong of him to be manipulating her like this, but suddenly she's not so sure it comes from a bad place. And amazingly enough, she trusts him, she knows the only thing he's going to erase is this night, he's not going to alter any of her other memories of him, of them. He could, but he won't.
She swallows back her tears – of guilt, fear, pain, resignation – and asks, "Will you ever give them back to me?"
He wavers, obviously torn.
"Will you ever forgive me if I do?"
She pauses to consider this. Compulsion is the one thing she's terrified of and he knows it. Could she ever forgive him for using it on her when he's fully aware of what it means to her?
"No," she whispers.
He nods as if this is the answer he was expecting.
"I'm sorry," he says again.
She shakes her head at him and decides it's time to try and lighten the mood since there's nothing she can do or say to change his mind.
"We are good together."
He plants a soft kiss on her lips.
"We're perfect together. But…" His voice trails off and he smirks. "Wrong time, wrong place."
She laughs over the sobs that are desperately trying to break free.
"At least this time it was the right equipment."
His smirk turns into a grin and he kisses her again. When he pulls away, she can feel the shift in his mood and she knows what's coming. She wants to close her eyes, but she's still compelled.
"Klaus…" she tries.
Caroline wakes up in her bed, disoriented. She remembers fighting with her friends over her training sessions with Klaus and she sighs, knowing she has to make things right with them. They need to understand that her loyalties have never been in question. That, yes, he intrigues her, but that it's all it will ever be. That she'll never see him again if this is what they want. Though she doubts they will want that, his infatuation with her has come in handy more than once in the past and she's sure they'll find some way to use it to their advantage in the future.
She remembers wanting to go to Klaus, feeling so angry with her friends and so desperate for someone who would understand that she would have done anything to forget for a while. She would have given anything for just one guilt-free night, for a few hours of not feeling awful about the fact that she actually cares about this man who's proven more than once that he would go to great lengths to protect her despite his evilness.
But she changed her mind on her way to the mansion, Tyler's face floating in her mind. He's still nowhere to be found and she hasn't talked to him since their plan to take down the Original Hybrid failed, but technically, they're still together, and she realized that she couldn't do this to him.
She can't imagine how she would feel right now if she'd actually gone through with it. Or what she would tell her friends. Or the humiliation if Klaus had pushed her away.
She gets up, showers, gets dressed, and heads to the Grill. She has some groveling to do and some unwanted feelings to bury.
Not sure how I feel about the ending… Tell me what you think!
Thanks for reading :)