Where Words Fail
A Klaroline One Shot
Part 1 of 3


\m/ . \m/

"Elijah, I refuse to work with some Britney Spears rock-and-roll wannabe..." Klaus spat, throwing back the rest of the whiskey in his tumbler before pouring himself more.

"I know you're hellbent on clearing out the room's liquor supply, Niklaus, but try not to get too sloshed before you go on stage... I know you're quite capable of playing and singing no matter your level of inebriation, but those medical bills were quite hefty after you stumbled over the edge of the stage the last time..." Elijah said, not bothering to look up from his phone while he was texting or emailing whomever he was talking to while talking to his brother and client. "And she's nothing like Britney Spears... You would've done better to compare her to Cherie Curie or Deborah Harry..."

"Then that would've defeated the purpose of the reference, brother..." Klaus said after he'd gulped down more of the dark amber liquid. "The point was to reference a talentless blonde..."

"How do you know she's talentless, Niklaus? You've never even heard her perform, much less spoken to her, and that's by no fault of mine. I did try to set up that meeting, but you chose to occupy yourself with another blonde... I hope she was worth what you paid, brother." Klaus smirked, remembering the blonde his brother was referencing.

"Oh she was... And it was actually her and another blonde... And their ginger friend." Klaus strolled away from the bar to grab his leather jacket that he'd tossed over the back of the couch where Elijah was sitting.

"Well you know as well as I do the danger of judging a book by it's cover. Although I had thought this book's cover would be to your liking," Elijah said, looking up from his phone long enough to hold up the magazine that was on the couch beside him. It was open to a photo spread with two pictures that made Klaus raise his eyebrows a bit before he tossed his leather jacket back down and snatched it from his brother.

"This is her?" Klaus said, knowing the answer already and scanning the pictures as Elijah tried to hide his triumphant smile. "She still looks a little..."

"'Talentless'?" Elijah asked, quoting his brother's earlier remark.

"I was going to say 'pure,' but then again I always did say that pageantry and regalia was always an indication of a musician's attempt at compensating for a lack real talent..." Klaus sniffed, before crossing with his glass of whiskey and the magazine to sit in the armchair next to his brother.

He sat in it sideways with one leg dangling off the arm of the chair and the other resting on the floor. He studied the picture for a moment, taking in the blonde that was sitting on the floor against a silver amp box. Her pose casual with one booted leg pulled up in front of her on the floor and the left one straight up and pulled close to her body, her elbow resting against her knee so her gloved hand could rest lightly against her forehead.

Her golden hair was messily curled and framed her face that was tastefully done with dark, but not too dark, eye makeup and lipstick a shade darker than her creamy, pale complexion. A solid black Gibson Flying V was resting against her right shoulder with the body of the guitar straddling her right thigh over the voluminous metallic gold ruffling of the skirt of her dress. He would've been more impressed with the girl if the guitar had not had hot pink guitar strings.

"From what I've heard, Caroline's style of music and performance is not that different from yours, Niklaus..." Elijah said, picking up his phone again.

"'I'm addicted to my new record player. So recently I've been listening to Nancy Sinatra, Simon & Garfunkel, Otis Redding and Jimi Hendrix...'" Klaus read the quote on the page with a photo of Caroline Forbes, 'up and coming rock princess,' and looked back at Elijah with an expectant face. "I doubt that's honestly her taste in music, but rather an eclectic enough blend of different genres to make her seem more knowledgeable about music..."

"Niklaus, I'm not asking you to be her best friend and hang around listening to records with her. I'm not even asking you to perform with her, I'm telling you to perform with her. Your record label made the deal with her label and you two will be touring together for the remainder of the summer..." Elijah said with a sigh, looking up and telling his brother straight the facts of the matter. Klaus groaned like a child and let his head hang off the chair in defeat.

"Fine, " he growled after a moment, sitting up and reaching for his glass that he'd put on the coffee table in front of them.

"As if you had a choice," Elijah snorted quietly. "And that was just her manager Bonnie, she texted me and asked if you'd mind filling in for Caroline's lead guitarist..."

"You said she was just my opening act!" Klaus said, the glass of whiskey pausing just as it had almost reached his lips. "Now I'm her lackey and playing guitar for her?!"

"Calm down, brother, no one's asking you to be her lackey... Apparently her guitarist, one 'Katerina P,'" Elijah glanced down at his phone to quote the text message Bonnie had sent, "Got into a fight at a bar last night and sprained her wrist and the doctors say that she'll need to keep a wrist brace on for at least the next two weeks... She thought that you of all people could understand their plight."

Klaus smirked, knowing his new opening act's manager was referencing his fractured hand in 2010 when he got into a bar fight in Dublin. He was forced to cancel the rest of his tour to get a minor procedure done and recover from the injury, and the record company had not been happy to say the least.

"If you are unwilling or unable to, I could always ask Stefan if he could cover for-" Elijah started to say before the magazine with Caroline's interview was tossed in his face.

"Don't be ridiculous, brother, we both know I'm a better guitarist than Stefan, although he is one of the best..." Klaus muttered, referring to his guitarist that typically played lead when Klaus only sang lead vocals. Elijah rolled his eyes at his brother, knowing although his response was arrogant, it was true.

"So I can tell her you'll play for Caroline?" Elijah said, pushing some buttons on his phone to call Bonnie rather than text her back.

\m/ . \m/

"What do you mean 'he'll take it under consideration'?!" Caroline screeched as their tour bus pulled into the parking lot of the stadium that would soon house over one thousand people. Her manager and best friend Bonnie sighed and pinched the bridge of her nose.

"Good news is it sounds like Elijah's on our side... Klaus is the one that's going to need a little persuading."

"He knows he's under contract, right?" Caroline said angrily, crossing her arms across her chest, obscuring the heart wrapped in barbed wire on her Joan Jett and the Blackhearts t-shirt.

"To have you open for him? Yes. To play for your dumbass lead guitarist when she gets into a bar fight with a random girl for making out with her boyfriend and spraining her wrist? No." The mocha skinned girl replied, her phone clicking as she opened a new text on her phone.

"Hey! That bitch was asking for it! Didn't even get angry at her boyfriend, ole What's-His-Name... No, she just decided to target all that rage and anger over her philandering boyfriend at me. Besides, a Petrova never walks away from a fight..." Katherine's voice came from the end of the bus after she lowered the TV, the antics of the Kardashian sisters and Scott Disick getting quieter in the background, so she could jump into the conversation when her name was brought up.

"At least you won the fight..." Caroline shrugged. "I do agree, that girl, what was her name? Something Gilbert? Anyway, she seemed like she had a stick shoved somewhere it desperately needed to be yanked out..." Caroline chuckled as crossed to grab a XXX Vitamin Water out of the mini fridge in the section of the bus that was their kitchen for all intents and purposes.

"Yeah well, now you're down a guitarist and either you have to have Klaus cover for Kat or his lead guitarist, Stefan Salvatore..." Caroline had taken a swig of her drink but nearly spit it out all over her manager and friend.

"Wait! Stefan was an option?!" Caroline choked out her words, "Why didn't you just ask him?!" Caroline met Stefan when she was just an aspiring singer-songwriter, slipping her demo CDs in recording producers' pockets when she wasn't playing her guitar on the street with her case open for loose change.

He was a roadie that had heard her playing in a bar one night and they had had a one night stand shortly after meeting. They quickly decided they were better as friends and Stefan promised to take a couple of her CDs and pass them out to the powers that be when he got the chance. Almost two years later, he's playing guitar and singing backup vocals for one of the industries most notorious playboy rockers, Niklaus Mikaelson, and she's the new girl on the scene, newly signed on to open for the same rocker.

The touring life was one not conducive to keeping up with friends long distance, so Caroline hadn't blamed him for losing touch with her, but if he was ever in L.A. he'd hit her up and they'd go out for dinner and drinks. He was pretty much responsible for her getting noticed, so how could she not? Without Stefan, Caroline had no doubt she'd still be playing in bars or on the street for petty change, praying she'd catch her break.

"Well I didn't know he was back playing with Klaus, I thought he was still touring with his brother, otherwise I wouldn't have even bothered asking Elijah," Bonnie said, trying to explain how it had come to this and Caroline sighed and flopped down on the couch that took up nearly the whole side of the bus, one of her legs resting on the couch and the other dangling off the side and her foot resting against the floor in her signature hot pink high top Converses.

"Huh, me too. Guess he got as tired of Damon's bullshit as the rest of us. Wait, didn't he get sent back to rehab?" Caroline said, turning her head toward Bonnie who sat on the couch opposite her.

"No, he just got out," Katherine called from the back of the bus, although the Kardashians had already reclaimed her attention.

"Again?"

"Apparently... Not that I care..." Bonnie and Caroline exchanged glances at Katherine's reply. She'd been involved with both Salvatore brothers and was in love more with Stefan than Damon, and unfortunately it was the other way around for the brothers. Even though she'd chosen Stefan over Damon, both girls knew their friend kept tabs on the elder Salvatore just as she did the younger.

"Well, I'm texting Stefan now, letting him know just in case Klaus goes all diva on us and decides not to play last minute..."

"Tell him I say hi and I'll owe him a drink."

"If Klaus punks out, the least you can offer is a bottle, Blondie," Katherine called and Caroline rolled her eyes.

"Yes, fine, I owe him a bottle... Ask him if he still likes Johnnie Walker," Caroline said to Bonnie, who nodded and kept texting away.

"What does Klaus get if he plays?" Katherine said, and Caroline could tell from her tone of voice she was trying to rile her up.

"He gets a 'thanks for not being a douchewaffle,' not a $500 bottle of whiskey, that's for damn sure..." Bonnie and Katherine sniggered as they heard the bus doors open and heard footsteps approaching and walking up the steps into the bus. They turned their attention toward the front and saw a man wearing a polo with the venue's logo on the left breast with messy brown hair and a rakish smile.

"Hello ladies, my name is Alaric, and I'll be your handler for tonight's show... Is there anything you ladies need or want that I can get for you right now?"

"I'll have a double martini, straight up, thanks gorgeous..." Katherine called from the back. Caroline chuckled at her friend's reply and shook her head when she saw the man waiting hesitantly, obviously not sure what to do.

"Hi, I'm Caroline, it's nice to meet you, Alaric..." she said, extending a hand towards the man and he gladly took it and shook it with a smile.

"Please, call me Ric," he said warmly.

"Only if you call me, Caroline..." she said with smile back, then gestured, "and this is my manager Bonnie, and Double Martini," she jerked a thumb towards the back of the bus, "is my indisposed guitarist, Kat... Please ignore her, she's hopped up on pain meds right now."

"Don't make excuses for Kat's personality..." Bonnie said and Caroline chuckled.

"And my bassist, Anna Belle, and my drummer, Lexi Branson, will be here soon, they would've been on the bus with us, but they've got friends and family in town, so they flew ahead on one of our breaks and will be meeting up soon for a soundcheck..." Alaric nodded and gestured to the front of the bus.

"Well we have dressing rooms set up for you ladies if you'd like to get ready in there, or if you'd like to stay on the bus, we can bring the hospitality food and gifts down here..."

"No that sounds great, I've been cooped up in here too long..." Caroline said, grabbing her hot pink peplum blazer and slipping her arms in and turning to the back of the bus. "What about you, Double Martini? You coming?"

"Send down a fruit basket and bottle of wine and I'm golden..." Katherine said waving her hand dismissively, her eyes never leaving the plasma screen.

"Yes to the fruit basket, no to the wine..." Caroline said to Alaric, and moving past him and walking down the bus steps.

"I heard that!"

"Don't care! Take another pill!" Caroline called back, hearing the clicking of Bonnie's heels behind her and then remembering their conversation before Alaric entered the bus. She paused and turned, seeing the man leaving the bus and walking with a little speed in his step to catch up with them.

"Oh, Ric, where's the nearest liquor store?"

"Just a few blocks over," he pointed in the direction but Caroline saw him trying to keep his air of professionalism even though he sounded slightly disapproving. "But I assure you, the stadium has provided a considerable amount of quality liquors to be at your disposal in the room..."

"Oh no, hon, I want to buy a gift for a friend," Caroline quickly cut him off, giving him an understanding look. She knew he was one of the staff people that saw a million and one rockstars come through that probably brought their own stash with them and made a spectacle of their drunkenness. Fortunately for him, she wasn't one of those kinds of rockers, at least not two and a half hours before the show. After the show as another thing entirely.

"Oh, of course, well whatever you need, I'd be happy to go send someone to pick it up for you..." He said assuredly and Caroline smiled at him.

"Great, thanks!" She replied, chipper knowing she'd be seeing an old friend very soon.

\m/ . \m/

"You guys, this mic stand is a piece of shit, could someone kindly find me one that isn't?" Stefan said, looking at the roadies that were standing around, leaning against the equipment cases that had yet to make their way off stage. They suddenly snapped to attention and scurried around to try and find a better mic stand for him and he sighed and ran a hand through his messily coiffed hair and suddenly heard screeching behind him.

He turned and smiled just as Caroline ran across the stage and launched herself into his arms and luckily he caught her and wasn't knocked over by the impact of her hurling herself into him.

"Well, look what the cat dragged in..." He said, his voice muffled by her mane of blonde hair covering his face.

"Don't be silly, I left the wounded Kat on the bus..." She laughed, releasing her grip on his neck only slightly for her to turn her head and kiss his cheek and look at his face.

"Oh really? How's the She-Devil doing?"

"She's fine, but we might need to add pain med addiction to the laundry list of her charming qualities..."

"Oh, lovely..." Stefan said sarcastically, but still smiling at his blonde friend. "And how are you holding up?"

"Good! Just glad to be off the bus and stretching my legs..." She said, her arms still wrapped around his neck, so she released him and laughed when she actually got a good look at him. "Wow, some things never change, do they, Stef?"

"Hey, I like this cut and I'm sticking to it!" Stefan said defensively touching his hair and Caroline laughed even harder.

"No, stupid, I was talking about this," She said as she tugged on his white t-shirt he was wearing and he knocked her hands away quickly, as if he were afraid she'd stretch the fabric. "Jon's mullet is a little outdated there, Stef."

"This is a classic! Besides, Lexi got it for me, and since I knew you'd all be here, I word it especially for you all," he said, smoothing his hands over Jon Bon Jovi's face down the front of his shirt.

"Awww, Stefan, ever the sentimentalist."

"Yeah yeah, keep making fun and we'll see how much more sentiment I have for you," Stefan said, wrapping an arm around her neck to rub his fist on her head, teasing her. Caroline laughed, fighting him off and once she was freed, a throat cleared behind her.

"Excuse me, will you stop bogarting the Salvatore please, Care?" Bonnie said, her hands on her hips and a faux-angry expression on her face. Caroline stepped to the side and held up her hands defensively as she made a face and Bonnie and Stefan smiled and embraced.

"Where's everyone else?" Stefan asked and no sooner had the words left his mouth, he was suddenly being surprised tackled from behind by two girls, one blonde and the other with raven hair. They laughed as Lexi grabbed Stefan's arms and pinned them behind his back, straddling him and called to Anna, "Quick! I've got his arms!" Anna whipped out a can of mousse and started shaking it. Stefan hadn't been struggling but when he heard the can shaking, he immediately tried to do his best to get up.

"Okay guys, this isn't funny..."

"Au contraire, mon ami," Anna started, squeezing the trigger and white foam appearing in her hand, "It's going to be hilarious..."

"I'm serious guys, put the mousse down," Stefan said, but when Anna simply put the can down on the floor beside her and started rubbing her hands together, he started to shout, "I SAID PUT IT DOWN!"

"Okay, 'down' you say? Okay!" Anna said with a wicked grin and her hands quickly rooted themselves in Stefan's brown locks. He immediately began thrashing as if Anna were trying to rub battery acid in his hair and he kept shouting but the girls just laughed and Caroline and Bonnie even got out their cellphones and started taking pictures and video. Anna mussed his hair and Stefan turned his head and his eyes grew wide with horror as he saw Anna reach and pull a battery operated hair dryer from her back pocket.

"No. No! NOOOO!" Stefan screamed in vain as Anna clicked the dryer on and immediately began blasting Stefan's newly moussed head. Caroline and Bonnie were in stitches laughing at this point and Lexi held onto Stefan long enough for the mousse to dry and set and then she and Anna released him, rolling on the floor laughing themselves. Stefan brought his hands up in horror and did his best flatten his crazy hair with his hands, but it was no use.

"You guys are a bunch of dicks!" He yelled, half in anger and half in disgust, and ran past them, no doubt to a bathroom to stick his head under a faucet, which was the only way he'd have a chance at fixing his hair.

"Actually, 'pussies' would be more accurate, you know since we're all girls!" Lexi managed to call after him and it sent the girls and the other techs and roadies that were in the space to start laughing uproariously again.

"Oh my god, you guys. That was awesome!" Caroline finally said once she could breathe again, high-fiving her bassist and drummer. "When did you guys come up with that plan?"

"About an hour ago," Anna said, "We were talking about the time that we found Lexi's blow dryer in Stefan's bathroom and he said 'she must have left it there.' God, he's such a pansy!" She said and they started laughing again.

"Okay guys, let's get set up so when he gets back we can just start the sound check. Who knows how long we'll convince him to stay now...and I don't think we can count on Mr. Mikaelson showing up if Stefan's here." Bonnie said, becoming all business again and the girls began setting up their instruments and things with the roadies to start practicing and testing sound levels.

\m/ . \m/

Klaus closed his hotel room door behind him and strode to the elevator, throwing back the contents of the tiny bottle he'd swiped from mini bar and chucking it in a nearby trash can before punching the down button. He got in the elevator, hit the lobby button and tucked his black leather jacket into the space between the handle and the wall to his side so he could slip his dark grey vest on. Just as he reached for his jacket, he felt his phone vibrating in his back pocket. He pulled it out and rolled his eyes as he saw the name on the screen.

"Hello, mummy, don't worry, I'm leaving now..." He said wryly, holding his phone to his ear with one shoulder so he could slip his arm into one jacket sleeve before switching his phone to the other ear so he could put his arm in the other sleeve.

"Good, I was just going to tell you that if you're playing for Caroline's opening then you'd have to come down here now," Elijah replied, ignoring Klaus's sarcastic endearment. He'd left to go down to the stadium to meet with Bonnie to go over logistics, giving time for Klaus to sleep off some of the bourbon.

"What are you talking about? Of course I'm playing..." He said irritably, as if he wondered why Elijah had suggested otherwise.

"Well you weren't there for soundcheck earlier, so-"

"What does that matter? Bonnie sent you her set list, it's half her songs, which are annoyingly easy chords for lead guitar and the other half are songs I know backwards and forwards."

"Fine, well there's a car waiting for you downstairs, we'll see you in 25 minutes, then."

"Good," Klaus said, not bothering to say good-bye and hanging up his phone and slipping it into his jacket pocket as he got off the elevator and strode through the lobby. He slipped his shades on even though it wasn't bright outside since he knew there'd be at least a few photographers waiting and he wasn't wrong.

Soon he was being plagued by a handful of photographers and reporters, all shouting and trying to ask him questions or get his attention, and the driver was already ready at the door of the black town car and opened it so that he was easily out of the hotel and in the car within a matter of seconds.

As the car made it's way to the stadium, his phone vibrated again and he groaned, thinking it'd be another text from his nanny, Elijah. Instead his lips curled into a devilish smile as he saw a name on the screen that he hadn't seen since the last time he was in town.

Hey, heard you're in town for a concert. Anytime for some fun later? -H

He opened the text and quickly replied back.

Sounds lovely, sweetheart. I'll let you know later. Give me time to shake my nanny so I can have you all to myself.

A few moments later, he had a reply.

I'll be waiting, but don't make me wait too long. I'm a very busy girl and if you're not up for some fun, there are a bunch of guys who are... -H

He smirked and quickly typed back:

Of course, although I doubt any of those blokes would have the stamina to break my record for induced orgasms in one round.

When he didn't get a snarky reply back, he smiled, knowing he'd put her in her place. Yes, she was one of his favorite escorts to hook up with when he was in town, but there were plenty of girls where she came from. Besides, the odds of him finding some groupie or fan was much more likely than her finding a lover as good as him, and she knew that. He was the alpha male, and there was no use denying it.

Soon the car was pulling up to the back entrance of the stadium for him to avoid the throngs of people who were already lining up to get inside for the concert. The driver opened the door for him and he slipped out, nodding to the stadium personnel that greeted him politely, and hurried in the door that a security guard had opened for him.

He was backstage in no time and Elijah was at his side, giving him information about the band and ushering him to the roadies that were unpacking his guitars.

"Give me the ES-355," he called to one of the roadies, who nodded and immediately went and sorted through Klaus's Gibsons looking for the one he'd specified.

"Caroline's in her dressing room getting ready, but her other band members are here if you want to warm up and go over the set list with them."

"Fine, fine," Klaus said distractedly, tossing his leather jacket to Elijah, who gave him an irritated look before handing it to one of his assistants. Klaus took the Gibson from the roadie who held it with reverence, and strode to the stage. He saw two girls, one with long jet black hair and a bass strung across her front talking to a blonde with her hair piled into a messy bun on the top of her head, sitting behind a drum kit. There was a third girl with mocha skin and dark brown hair, dressed professionally, and Klaus knew who she was before Elijah introduced her.

"Bonnie, this is my brother, Klaus. Niklaus, this is Bonnie B, Caroline's manager," Elijah said, gesturing to the girl, who extended a hand to him with a polite smile that didn't quite reach her eyes, both of which reflected a look of annoyance and contempt that Klaus recognized all too well.

"Nice to meet you, Klaus," Bonnie said, even though Klaus really didn't think she meant it, "We weren't expecting you to get here until much later." Obviously when she said 'we' she wasn't referring to herself and his brother, and he knew all too well whom she must be referring to when she said the word.

"Well then my brother should've done a better job at convincing you. He knows how I can't resist a pretty blonde."

Elijah chuckled, trying to ease the tension that was already mounting and Klaus smirked as he watched Bonnie do her best to keep her polite smile plastered on, even though he could swear he heard her teeth grinding.

"How charming," Bonnie muttered before turning and walking towards the stage, no doubt expecting Klaus and Elijah to follow, "I'll introduce you to the girls."

Once introductions were over, Klaus ran through each song once and had to admit, the girls were better than he'd expected. Anna was a great bassist that was so in it and could riff better than his own bassist, Chris; and Lexi was the constant and consistent heartbeat of the entire performance on drums. He complimented them and they accepted, seeming to grasp the sincerity in his tone and words and said that they were happy to play with him if Kat and Stefan weren't able.

"Speaking of Stefan, where is the nancy boy?" He asked and was taken off guard by the raucous laughter he was met with from both girls.

"Probably in his bathroom shaking and trembling," Lexi said.

"If he's not showering for the seventeenth time," Anna added before whipping out her cell and flipping through her pictures before showing him the screen. He took her phone and laughed as he scrolled through the pictures they took earlier.

"Jesus," he laughed, "I hope he's not too traumatized to play for me later..."

"Oh don't worry, even if he is, Caroline can cover for him," Anna assured him, chuckling as she took her phone back. Klaus chuckled along with them and nodded, remembering how he'd seen on the list that Caroline would be on guitar for certain songs and remembering her picture in the magazine Elijah had shown him earlier.

"So I take it the Flying V is really hers then?" He asked and the girls nodded, and Lexi pointed to it side stage with one of her drumsticks.

"Caroline never goes anywhere without it. It's her pride and joy."

Klaus glanced over and saw the same solid black Gibson guitar Caroline had been photographed with and thought that the hot pink guitar strings weren't as bad as they'd seemed to him originally in the photo. Besides, Gibson was his favorite guitar manufacturer, so anyone that loved their Flying V as much as Caroline seemed to love hers was alright in his book. Maybe this whole arrangement wouldn't be as bad as Klaus had thought.

\m/ . \m/

Soon they were waiting backstage as the stadium filled with people and he saw that Anna and Lexi were hunched around Anna's phone, no doubt going through the pictures of their attack on Stefan earlier that day and debating which pictures to tweet and post to the band's Facebook page. He'd told them he'd retweet any pictures that they posted, and after their run through and that comment, he saw he'd won them over despite the fact he'd missed the soundcheck and shown up less than an hour before they were supposed to open.

The only person that wasn't there was the girl he was doing the favor for, but Bonnie had said she was still getting prepped and was warming up vocally and she'd come on stage during the first few bars of the song.

He would do the same, but he knew that they didn't need him to do backup vocals with Anna and their back up singers there and that they'd take a 10 minute break before he and his band was supposed to perform, so he decided he'd just warm up then.

Before they knew it, they were dimming the audience lights to signal to the audience that the show was about to start. The crowd started to cheer and soon all the lights were out, save for the scattered lights of cellphones, cameras, and various glow sticks and glow stick jewelry across the crowd. Once they were completely in a blackout, Klaus moved into position on stage with Anna, Lexi and the back up singers.

Klaus glanced around, his eyes adjusting to the dark and murmured that he was ready. Once he heard everyone murmur they were ready loud enough for him to hear, he heard the clicking of Lexi tapping her guitar sticks together and call loudly, "ONE, TWO, THREE, FOUR, FIVE, SIX-" and then Klaus heard Lexi's opening counts of drumming on "seven and eight" and once she was done he and Anna immediately hit their opening notes and the crowd went wild.

They played the opening notes of the familiar tune, and they all knew they were repeating the same measures until Caroline entered. They played for a bit in the blackout, getting the audience more and more riled up until the lights came up instantly the second they began to repeat again, and the audience went wild. Then there was a delayed reaction before even more high pitched screams were heard, no doubt as many girls in the audience saw that Klaus was on lead guitar. He glanced up only once to give them a devilish smirk and he kept playing.

He got so into the notes he was playing, happy that of the songs that were in Caroline's set list, he not only knew how to play them, but they were songs that he loved. This one in particular lent itself for a great guitar solo midway through the song, and the girls had told him Caroline knew that he'd riff for a bit, however long he wanted, and once he gave her a cue, she'd pick up with the correct verse. He hadn't been worried about joining them as last minute as he had because he was a professional, and this was all he knew; it was his life's work. The true test would be if Caroline wouldn't be thrown off by having him as a replacement, having practiced with Stefan earlier.

He was only pulled from the music as he heard a new wave of screams coming from the house right portion of the audience and he glanced up to see a mane of blonde hair making its way down the aisle. He couldn't make her out completely, just her hair which was wild and crimped and full of volume, and he had to give her credit for her entertaining and unexpected entrance from the audience.

He realized she was greeting the crowd and that's what was taking her so long to get up to the stage, and he and the band continued to play the same opening measures again. They began repeating the measures again and again, and he eventually turned to shoot a disbelieving look at Anna, who was smirking, and he mouthed, "Are you serious?" and she merely shrugged and rolled her eyes as they kept playing.

The whole crowd was now in a frenzy, Caroline no doubt finally making her way up the steps to the stage, and Klaus turned back to see the blonde bombshell strutting to the vacant microphone to his left, directly center stage.

Luckily they were at the top of a new repeating of the measures and she was waiting for a new one to start, because Klaus was completely awestruck, and he didn't catch himself staring and not playing along until Anna called to him and snapped him out of it.

She was absolutely breathtaking. But even that was an understatement; she was a fucking knockout.

She was wearing a loose black, sleeveless blouse-like tank top with studding that decorated the neckline and front and it separated into three strips in the back that connected the top neckline to the bottom of the shirt and exposed the smooth, flawless pale skin of her back. She had on what he's sure his little sister would deem 'booty shorts,' but they were nothing less than black boyfriend brief underwear to Klaus, and she wore them over a pair of black fishnets that covered her long, glorious legs. A pair of two or three inch black ankle boots with similar lined studs, like the ones on her shirt, were on her feet and a pair of black lace gloves were on her hands and covered them to her wrists. A black birdcage veil was attached to her mane of hair and obscured the upper half of her face down to her nose, and her bright red lips topped off her entire ensemble.

Anna had called to him and snapped him out of his reverie, and he heard where they were and hit the guitar riff with gusto and immediately after Caroline started to sing, pointing out to the audience.

"I saw him dancin' there by the record machine

I knew he must've been about seventeen

The beat was goin' strong

Playin' my favorite song

An' I could tell it wouldn't be long

Till he was with me,"

The backup girls and Anna joined her and sang, "Yeah me."

And Caroline kept singing with the chorus fast approaching.

"And I could tell it wouldn't be long

Till he was with me, yeah me, singin'"

The backup girls and Anna and the crowd joined in with Caroline for the chorus.

"I love rock n' roll

So put another dime in the jukebox, baby

I love rock n' roll

So come and take your time and dance with me!"

Klaus played along and watched with fascination as Caroline performed, even though she was mostly just swaying and rocking out in time with the music, until she ripped the microphone out of the stand during the beat of music, and she suddenly spun in place and fell to the ground on her knees and laid down and arched her back as she called out, "Wow!" with so much gusto and showmanship, it would've made Joan Jett proud.

She quickly picked up the second verse and her hand slid tantalizingly down her curves, continuing from where she was, writhing on the floor as if she were remembering past lovers as she sang.

He smiled so I got up and asked for his name

'That don't matter, he said, ''Cause it's all the same'

Klaus nearly stopped breathing as he watched the sexy blonde slowly stood and took hold of the mic stand with her left hand and proceeded to grind provocatively against it while she sang into the mic in her right hand. She slowly and enticingly rolled her body against the piece of metal and Klaus couldn't help the growl that escaped his throat as she began to sing the next verse.

Said, 'Can I take you home, where we can be alone?'

He couldn't stop himself from watching her lithe figure move, nor could he help himself from staring at her backside that was barely covered with the small piece of tight, stretchy fabric. The combination of her outfit, her movements and her sultry, almost raspy and bluesy voice was absolutely maddening and Klaus found himself very grateful for the placement of his Gibson in front of his body.

An' next we were movin' on

He was with me, yeah me

Her provocative movements only stopped for her to rock out to Lexi's drumming and his guitar and he found himself playing more passionately, hoping that his playing would bring more of that scintillating movement from her body as they approached the second chorus and his guitar solo which immediately followed.

Next we were movin' on

He was with me, yeah me, singin'

The audience, the back up singers, and Anna joined in with Caroline for the chorus again as she strutted around the stage, mostly to their left where the backup singers were, and Klaus found himself crossing to center stage to be closer to her.

I love rock n' roll

So put another dime in the jukebox, baby

Caroline turned back and saw that Klaus had crossed closer to her and she quirked an eyebrow and gave him a seductive smile and sauntered casually back to him, and took the microphone stand in her left hand again and faced him as she sang with everyone.

I love rock n' roll

So come an' take your time an' dance with me!

He looked at her and saw how amped up she was and it only turned him on more and made him more anxious to start riffing his guitar, one of the few ways he knew to show off his prowess, to show her his alpha that came out when he was lost in the music. They were inches apart and she watched him until she suddenly flung her torso back, practically bending her entire body in half and wailed, "Wow!"

It caused her shirt to rise slightly and gave Klaus a glimpse of her lower abdomen and Klaus nearly growled again, imagining their bodies pressed against each other instead of inches apart and her throwing her head back like that in the middle of passion.

The motion also forced his attention up to her breasts, which were all but thrust in his face and he had to resist the urge to throw his beloved Gibson to the side and pull her to him and take her right there in the middle of the stage, not caring it would be in front of the band members, his brother, her manager, and thousands of people that filled the stadium.

Instead he took all the passion and sexual energy that was coursing through him, took a single step away, and channeled all of it into his playing and he began to riff and play his guitar solo. It was a little varied from the typical solo performance, but his eyes slid shut and played without thinking of the notes. Instead, he thought of Caroline's lithe body and how each movement sent him into a sexual frenzy and somehow, like they always did, his fingers turned his feelings and thoughts into music as he caressed his guitar like a lover; how he'd caress and play upon Caroline's body if he had the chance.

He could hear himself winding down in the solo, knowing Caroline would start singing again, and his eyes snapped open as he felt something sliding across his chest from left to right. He gasped and bit back a moan as he looked down realized it was Caroline's hand languidly dragging across his chest as she moved around him.

She paused when she was behind him and, even though he wanted to turn and look and see if there was the same fire blazing in her eyes that he knew was in his, he stood where he was and didn't move.

He felt her press her back to his and her head rest against his shoulder blade, with him facing stage left and her stage right, and he wasn't able to bite back his moan this time and it ripped out of his throat. He began to play the notes she would be singing within the song and she took notice of his cue and began to sing again and roll her body in time with the music, her back still pressed to his.

Said can I take you home where we can be alone

He groaned again, his eyes sliding shut as he felt her body against his and moving along with the music and he could imagine her writhing beneath him in a similar manner, and he made sure his trusty Gibson, which he'd decided to not throw across the stage, kept his inner battle a secret. Mercifully he wasn't expected to play anything in this portion so he stood and gathered his thoughts and senses as Caroline continued singing.

Next we were movin' on

He was with me, yeah me,

Luckily for Klaus, that was the moment Caroline decided to move around and slink back to center stage, but she still turned to face him and sang.

An' we'll be movin' on

An' singin' that same old song

Yeah with me, singin'

Caroline stopped singing and held her hand with the mic out to the audience and her free hand to her ear as if she expected them to sing, and they didn't disappoint her and they all shouted the lyrics to her.

I love rock n' roll

So put another dime in the jukebox, baby

I love rock n' roll

So come an' take your time an' dance with me

Caroline had begun to gesture clapping largely with her hands around 'dime', and the back up singers and audience mimicked her as they all sang. She glanced over at Klaus and seeing his heated stare, she grinned devilishly and took hold of her empty mic stand and dragged it over to him and held tight to it as she began to thrash and head bang during 'so come an' take your time an' dance with me' in time with the music.

So that's how it is? He thought to himself and he returned the smile. Alright, two can play at that game, love. He listened for his moment and after when Lexi started to wind up the drumming again and he jumped back in, his left hand gliding down the neck of his guitar and he began playing his guitar solo again amongst the familiar tune of the song.

I love rock n' roll

So put another dime in the jukebox, baby

I love rock n' roll

So come an' take your time an' dance with-

I love rock n' roll

So put another dime in the jukebox, baby

I love rock n' roll

So come an' take your time an' dance with-

Caroline had started singing the chorus along with the backup girls and audience, but when Klaus had launched back into playing, her head had snapped back up and he glanced up and saw her watching him play with rapt attention. He felt his groin tighten as he saw what he would've sworn was...arousal in her eyes. He smirked at her wickedly and played even more passionately, and she returned his wicked smile before starting to headbang again and writhe and roll her body again, caressing her curves with her free hand as the song started to come to a close.

I love rock n' roll

So put another dime in the jukebox, baby

I love rock n' roll

So come an' take your time an' dance with-

He heard Lexi subtly cuing them that it would be the last chorus, and suddenly Caroline began to close the distance between the two of them.

I love rock n' roll

So put another dime in the jukebox, baby

Caroline moved the mic to her left hand and danced and writhed closer to Klaus, her right hand going up and tangling in her blonde mane of hair, and he did his best to stay focused and continued to play.

I love rock n' roll

So come an' take your time...

Caroline suddenly grabbed hold of the neck of Klaus's guitar and whipped it down, the strap across Klaus's body keeping it from falling and merely turning so that it was now against his back with the neck pointing down. She moved his guitar aside and grabbed the right side of his vest and pulled him to her, her right hand wrapping around the back of his neck as her left leg hitched around his waist as she sang ...an' dance with me!

Instinctually, Klaus's one hand reached up to take a hold to her arm as it held his neck and his other went to her leg and kept it pressed to him.

The crowd went wild and Klaus and Caroline were frozen center stage, wrapped up in each other, their faces so close that their noses actually touched and her warmth between her legs was sinfully pressed to his ever raging hard on.

Even though thousands of people were screaming, the only thing that Klaus heard was Caroline's rapid breathing that matched his own.

Yes, they'd both given physically exerting performances just then, but there was something else that was causing them to gasp for air, both trying to catch their breath. There was an electricity between them and Klaus could feel his heart thumping loudly in his chest as he stared down into Caroline's face, his eyes half-lidded just like hers. He took an inventory of everything he was feeling and what he observed from her and he saw the recognition hit her eye the same time he realized it:

They'd both holding each other and gasping and getting a grip on their senses after having what could only be described as the performance equivalent of an orgasm in the middle of the stage.

Once Caroline had regained control of her breathing, she brought her leg down and stepped away from him and, without her body there to hide the evidence of his arousal, Klaus turned his back to the audience and took the opportunity to grab one of the water bottles that the crew had left on tables upstage against the platforms where Lexi and her drum kit were so she could be seen while they played on the normal level of the stage.

He took a deep breath before taking a gigantic gulp of water and immediately thinking of all the normal things he thought of to get rid of a hard on: mucus, crying babies, that one time he'd accidentally walked in on Mikael and Esther, Betty White. It was one of the most relentless hard ons he'd ever been misfortuned to have in public, but Mikael and Esther together and Betty White finally put him over the edge and he could feel his body quickly simmer down after a while as he heard Caroline addressing the crowd.

"Thank you! Thank you so much!" He heard the blonde call into the microphone and the crowd went even more crazy if that was possible. Even though she was speaking into a mic, the volume from the audience was so great that she still had to shout over them.

"My name is Caroline Forbes, and we are 'Caroline and the Vamps'!" The crowd went wild again and Klaus turned back and couldn't help but smile wickedly as Caroline gave him a glorious view of her ass as she leaned down to bow to the audience. When she righted herself, she turned to look at him and seeing he was facing forward she gestured with her hand towards him as she turned and spoke to the audience again.

"I'd like to thank our main act's lead singer, Klaus Mikaelson, for stepping in when our band member, Kat, was unable to play tonight." The crowd went wild again for the star of the headlining act of the night and Klaus smiled and waved to the audience, blowing a kiss or two here and there.

"I mean, Kat and I normally grind against each other during that song, but we can forgive him," she started, and a portion of the audience chuckled at her frankness about her sensual performance. "I mean, come on, how fucking hot was that solo, guys? Am I right?" Her question was met with more high pitched screaming and Klaus blushed and smiled knowingly, both from Caroline's assertion and the crowd's obvious approval of his performance.

It was a matter of seconds before the crowd suddenly began to launch things on stage, mostly flowers and stuffed animals, but Klaus chuckled when he saw some things he typically didn't see until midway through his band's performance: panties.

The underwear usually made it's way to the stage in the middle of his set he did his Chris Cornell cover of "Billie Jean," driving the female portion audience to tears and throwing their underwear on the stage. And it was only Caroline's opening number; obviously the audience had been just as aroused as they were too.

Caroline had turned and gotten a drink of water for herself, taking off her birdcage veil, after she'd made her comment about Klaus's solo, so she was turning back to the audience and wiping sweat from her brow. She was frozen where she stood as she took in the stage in front of her, littered with an assortment of ladies' underwear and she finally turned bright red and placed her hand right over the middle of her face as she obviously tried to contain her laughter and embarrassment.

The crowd fed off of her reaction and cheered even louder, and some even catcalled and whistled. It made Klaus chuckle and finally Caroline lowered her hand and curtsied to the audience before surveying the panties in front of her. She stooped down and picked up a seemingly clean pair, pinching the edges between her fingertips, and she carefully placed the microphone back in the stand and held the panties up for the audience to see.

"I really like these. Someone here knows I have a thing for polka dots," she said conspiratorially into the microphone, singing 'polka dots,' and Klaus and the audience laughed along with her and her band.

"I'll save these for later...AND I'LL BE SURE TO WASH THEM!" The audience laughed again with her as she turned to go and toss them on the edge of Lexi's platform.

She paused though since she turned and saw Klaus looking at her with a knowing smirk, and she took a few steps back to the microphone and leaned in and added quickly before moving again.

"Go on! Pick your favorite pair, Klaus! I know you're much more used to women throwing their panties at you than I am, but I'm sure that there's a pair that will fit you!" He squinted his eyes at her as the audience laughed uproariously again and she quirked an eyebrow at him with a saucy smirk before turning and prancing upstage to put the polka dotted pair she had down.

He decided to turn the panty comment in his favor and so he turned back to survey the array of lingerie in front of him. His hands were pressed together in a praying position to his lips as if he were considering every pair, and he was pretending that he didn't hear the girls all screaming and shouting the location of their underwear over top of one another and hoping he'd select theirs.

He finally stooped down and picked up a silky pair of solid red panties, edged with red lace and the crowd went wild and he stood up and held them up for the audience to see, waggling his eyebrows and mouthing his thanks before holding them up just to stick them in his back pocket in a very showy fashion. He turned and saw that Caroline had seen the whole thing and was looking at him both in disgust and impressed that he'd turned her panty selecting comment around so it wasn't against him.

He smirked at her impishly before crossing back to the mic stand nearest him that he'd left untouched throughout the whole song, and brought the mic close to his lips.

"They are lovely, although I'd much prefer the pair you're wearing, love," he said, trying to match her conspiratorial tone from earlier, and the audience laughed and he could hear the men in the audience start to cheer him on.

Caroline squinted her eyes right back at him, not moving from where she was upstage near Lexi's drum platform, and pursed her lips. Klaus smirked evilly at her as the male audience members continued catcalling and whistling. Caroline suddenly smirked seductively and brought the mic slowly up to her lips again.

"I'm not wearing any."

The smirk on Klaus's face fell instantly and the audience lost complete control and he heard every male voice roar in response to Caroline's salacious declaration, and no one had any reason to doubt what she was saying was the God's honest truth. Caroline quirked an eyebrow in triumph and raised her hands and turned slowly, modeling the briefs for Klaus and everyone else.

Her bandmates laughed and clapped along with the audience, who was whistling and going even crazier than before and Klaus's gaze slid down to the tiny shorts she was wearing over her fishnets and visibly gulped. She'd turned and stopped, pointing her butt in his direction and leaned down and popped it out as much as she could and Klaus felt his jaw go slack, realizing that there was no visible line of any panties or thong; she was being totally and completely truthful.

He found himself feeling very hot and began wiping his brow as more sweat appeared on it than ever before and Caroline turned and gave him a villainous smile before turning back to the audience and shrugging shamelessly. She slowly sauntered up to her mic stand center stage and casually clicked the mic back into the stand as she spoke.

"On that note, I think it's as good a time as ever to continue the set with our next song, which now seems even more wildly and inappropriately appropriate," she said. "It's a song by the same band, I think you all know it." Klaus immediately thought and felt his fists clench as he realized what she was talking about and took deep breaths, trying to keep his hormones and senses from going completely haywire again.

Caroline turned and took her Gibson Flying V from a crew member and thanked them, slipping the strap over her head and letting it rest comfortably in front of her. She took out the pick wedged between the hot pink strings and neck of the solid black guitar and plugged her pride and joy up to a nearby amp and looked at Lexi and nodded. The blonde behind the drums nodded back at her friend with a smile and began tapping out the infectious beat of the song.

The crowd began to cheer tamely until Caroline looked and nodded at Anna before turning to look at Klaus as they began the first notes of the recognizable guitar intro and the crowd went wild again. Klaus watched her handle her guitar with as much power and command as every legendary guitarist he'd ever seen, if not more, and felt himself getting aroused all over again. Caroline wasn't some 'Britney Spears rock-and-roll wannabe' and she wasn't some newcomer trying to impress him to get in with his band or get in on his success.

No, she was none of those things. With the way she carried herself and the way she performed and the command and power she derived from her confident sexuality, Klaus knew right in that moment:

If he was the alpha male, Caroline was the alpha female.

The crowd kept screaming wildly and Caroline quickly pacified them and began singing, and Klaus did his best to play guitar alongside Caroline as she began to wail beautifully into the microphone.

We've been here too long

Tryin' to get along

Pretendin' that you're oh so shy

She turned back to look at Klaus and quirked her eyebrow as she smiled knowingly, her body rolling gently even with the guitar across her front.

I'm a natural ma'am

Doin' all I can

My temperature is runnin' high

Cry at night

No one in sight

An' we got so much to share

Talking's fine

If you got the time

But I ain't got the time to spare

Yeah

Caroline turned back to the audience, pausing a moment from playing and pointed her right hand, still holding her pick which was appropriately colored hot pink, up at the audience as she sang.

Do you wanna touch?

Then as the audience and her band replied, Yeah! Caroline grabbed the hem of her tank top and pulled her shirt up, flashing the audience. Klaus felt his hands slip from his guitar as he gawked, but all Caroline was giving everyone was a glimpse of her black bra that she wore underneath her shirt with her guitar hanging low below her waist. It was a genius move, because she wasn't wearing panties, so why would anyone think she was wearing a bra? Especially when the back of her shirt was so exposed and open and dipped so low, suggesting she probably wasn't wearing one?

But she bore her bra proudly to the audience on each 'Yeah!' showing it off, and as Caroline continued singing and flashing the audience, Klaus realized what it was; Klaus realized it was one of the sneaky bras that he'd seen before, just the cups in the front, held to the sides of her body with two small pieces of sticky strips so that her back would remain bare.

Do you wanna touch (Yeah)

Do you wanna touch me there, where

Do you wanna touch (Yeah)

Do you wanna touch (Yeah)

Caroline released the hem of her shirt, since she only pulled it up for the 'Yeahs' and took hold of her guitar again and continued playing and her face twisted into one experiencing pure and exquisite pleasure as she kept singing.

Do you wanna touch me there, where

There, yeah

The audience and Caroline's band members picked up the repeated lines and Klaus tried to pick back up with them, but was mesmerized by Caroline's guitar playing.

Yeah, oh yeah, oh yeah

Yeah, oh yeah, oh yeah

As the crowd and her band sang, Caroline had stepped away from her mic stand and essentially curled herself around her guitar and let loose whatever passion and emotion had been mounting while she'd just been singing on those hot pink strings of hers. Klaus watched with rapt fascination as she played passionately and vigorously in the two counts of sixteen that the "oh yeahs" allowed her.

Right away he knew: how he was watching her play in this moment was exactly how she'd been watching him during his solo when she had been guitarless. He had never met a woman that aroused him with the mere artistry and skill of her performance as much as she did with her appearance, and Caroline Forbes was starting to make him question everything he knew about the world, about music, about art and about himself.

She glanced back up at him as she finished her solo and gave him a wink and he felt himself gape a little. That saucy minx, that little sex kitten; she knew exactly what she was doing to him! Her wink was quick and subtle and she turned back to the audience quickly to begin the second verse.

Klaus was starting to regret volunteering to cover for Kat. He had no idea how he was going to make it through Caroline's entire opening act.

\m/ . \m/

"I just wanted to make a toast," Elijah said, raising his champagne glass up to the group. The group was in the tiny yet comfortable green room of the stadium, and the group consisted of just Caroline, Klaus, each of their bands, Elijah and Bonnie and all of their assistants. Each band's roadies were busy packing up everything to move out since they had another performance the next night; but Elijah had saved a bottle of Dom Perignon for them to have after the work was complete.

"To bringing together two powerhouse performers," he said with a respectful nod to both Caroline and Klaus. "With two top notch bands," he adds, gesturing around with his glass to all the musicians, including Kat who had peeled herself away from Kourtney and Scott's drama even if only for a glass of champagne, "And putting on a hell of a show."

Everyone murmured their cheers and clinked glasses. Klaus toasted with the people closest to him, but couldn't tear his eyes from the blonde a few feet to his right as they sipped their bubbly. He was trying to catch her eye, but she was too distracted, watching her brunette friend down her glass of champagne; even he had to admit, for a woman who was taking pain meds, she was probably drinking her champagne a little too fast. He saw her suddenly make a beeline for her friend, who was chatting up his brother, and he stepped towards her but was intercepted by his best friend and guitarist.

"So what's the deal with you and Caroline?" Stefan said firmly, but quiet enough for only Klaus to hear him. His words made Klaus halt in his tracks, and he looked at Stefan disbelievingly.

"Honestly, Stefan? You're honestly asking me that, mate? She's my opening act and a sensational performer. I admire her technique. It's nothing more," he said, trying to step past Stefan, who obsequiously stepped in front of him again, refusing to let him pass.

"You know, I thought you might say that," Stefan started, a smug look on his face, "and I'll tell you how I knew you'd say that. Because that's what you always do, Klaus: you brush people off or write them off even though you can't stand when people do that to you. It's one of your deepest, darkest insecurities; which is probably the reason that you do it to other people, so you do it to them before they do it to you..."

Klaus stood silently glaring at his friend, anger, hurt and defensiveness all swirling together in his expression, but even after a few seconds, he had no response for his friend's allegation. And even though he'd been smug only seconds ago, Stefan only looked at Klaus with understanding eyes.

"Caroline is one of my best friends. I know her as well as I know myself. And you know what? She may not have always been this strong and confident, but she is now; and she's probably the strongest and most self-respecting person I know, Klaus."

"What's your point, Stefan?" Klaus all but spat through gritted teeth, getting more and more pissed with his friend's pontificating.

"I'm not saying you two can't be together. For one, you're both adults and I'm not your parent nor am I in charge of either of your lives. Second, I respect and care about you both too much to tell you that," Stefan began to clarify, "Thirdly, because I'm sure the universe wouldn't allow me to keep you two apart even if I tried..."

"Oh, Stefan...ever the sentimentalist," Klaus said wryly with a smirk and Stefan's eyes widened a bit before chuckling at Klaus's remark.

"Yeah well, you two are more alike than you know." Klaus quirked an eyebrow questioningly at his friend before the young man continued.

"Besides, we all saw how you two were with each other tonight."

"What are you talking about?" Klaus said, scoffing, "She was playing up the sexual energy of the song, like the talented performer she is." He turned to walk away, but once again Stefan's words made him stop in his tracks.

"You know that I and a select few know you never rehearsed any of that opening with Caroline, since I myself was there to do the soundcheck. There's photo evidence of that all over Twitter and Facebook and who knows whatever other corners of the internet," Stefan started and when Klaus stopped walking, Stefan continued. "And Caroline was getting ready when you got there before the show, so you only practiced with Anna and Lexi." Still Klaus was silent, so Stefan took his silence as the opportunity to tell him straight.

"To any unknowing onlooker, it'd seem like you and Caroline had rehearsed that whole thing, the way you just...responded to each other so effortlessly. But I know better. And the bands and Elijah and Bonnie, we all know better than that." Stefan watched as his friend clenched and unclenched his hands, but since he was still silent, he knew he'd gotten through to him. Suddenly Klaus turned to Stefan with a very pointed expression, but suddenly Lexi appeared by side them and took hold of Stefan's arm.

"Hey, Steffy, come here a second, I need you real fast."

"WHYWHATFOR?" Stefan's reply came out louder and faster than he'd probably intended, blurring his two separate questions together into one loud word that cause everyone to turn and glance at them. Klaus glanced over his friend and took in his expression and noted a certain fear in his eyes and in his tone and he did his best not to double over with laughter.

"Don't worry, mate," he said reassuringly, clapping his friend on the shoulder and gesturing to Anna, "I had her and the other hair assailant over there patted down before the toast. They're free of any hair product weaponry, I swear."

Lexi burst out laughing when she realized what was making Stefan so antsy and grabbed onto him tighter.

"He's right; I come with no concealed gel, mousse or hairspray, and all my combs and hair dryers are safely tucked away in my luggage. Come on," she said, tugging Stefan away from Klaus, and he merely managed to scowl at him and shake his head while Klaus waved back at him mockingly.

As he watched his friend get dragged away by the relentless blonde, his mind wandered back to the blonde that had been the object of his attention and desires since she strutted up the stage to her microphone earlier. He also got to thinking about Stefan's comment about how he and Caroline were "responding to each other" on stage earlier. He'd also described as seeming "effortless," and Klaus couldn't help but agree with his friend. Never in his life had he had such effortless and natural chemistry with anyone on stage...or off he realized.

His thoughts were wandering back to her and then almost as a 'sign from the universe,' as Stefan would call it, the small crowd parted and revealed Bonnie turning and suddenly leaving Caroline by herself. The moment presented itself, and Klaus wasn't going to let it get away from him. He slowly made his way over and stalked his prey that was too busy taking in the hospitality catering and perusing the desserts.

She had no glass of champagne in her hand, and her hands were pressed together and pressed to her lips and it almost made Klaus stop in his tracks again. It was a gesture he often caught himself doing, and as he recognized this, Stefan's words, 'you two are more alike than you know,' flew through his mind. What if Stefan was right? What if the universe was bringing them together? Their chemistry was undeniable, they were both on the same life tracks, their paths were crossing for who knows how long; maybe Stefan wasn't as unhinged or sentimental as Klaus chalked him up to be.

Well there was only one way to find out, so Klaus put his game face back on and walked over and stood beside Caroline at the table. He saw her admiring a chocolate sculpture and glanced down at her plate and, seeing the pile of cookies mounted on it, chuckled.

"So you like horses?"

Caroline glanced up at him eying her, the chocolate horse sculpture and horseshoe cookies on her plate suspiciously and she gave him a once over and looked away, ignoring him and looking over the rest of the dessert table.

"I heard that one staff bloke, I think his name was Ric, saying that the chocolate statue was a leftover from a horseback riding competition that canceled without enough notice, and they ordered too many horseshoe cookies for St. Patrick's Day last week..."

"I'm not talking to you until you tell me why you replaced Stefan at the last minute," Caroline suddenly said pointedly, making sure not to look a Klaus while she spoke.

"I fancy you." Her head snapped up in surprise and she regarded him with a wary and doubtful look. It made him chuckle inside and he smiled wryly at her.

"Is that so hard to believe?"

"Yes!"

"Why?" He replied automatically, "You're beautiful, you're...you're strong, you're full of light." Klaus couldn't believe the words that were tumbling out of his mouth no more than Caroline apparently could and he paused to try and think of the right thing to say to her, and merely came up with, "I enjoy you."

"Yeah, well I'm spoken for..." She replied quickly, tossing a chocolate covered strawberry on her plate unceremoniously and stepping further down the table away from him. But Klaus wasn't giving up that easily.

"By Tyler?" He ventured a guess and her hand froze as she reached for the mini cannolis and he knew he'd hit the nail on the head. "But I thought you two ended things?" Unbeknownst to her, he had taken the magazine Elijah had shown him back to his room when he'd tried to relax during the soundcheck, before the show, and had read the interview that she'd done with the magazine, twice.

It had speculated that she and her boyfriend of nearly 18 months, the famous football player Tyler Lockwood, had split even though many had predicted he was going to propose to her within the year.

"Yeah, because of you and my stupid tour with you!" Caroline suddenly spat at Klaus, who was caught off guard, but only for a moment as the realization that she's all but dispelled her earlier statement as a falsehood with this impassioned admission.

"So you aren't spoken for?" He said slowly, and much more like a statement than a question. Caroline opened her mouth to respond to him but after a moment, closed it and turned away, not in spite, but Klaus saw sadness briefly cross her face before her face was hidden from his view. He realized he might have been too insistent about a topic Caroline didn't want to discuss; afterall, the interview was conducted and published all very recently. The wounds were still fresh, and although she'd reproached the tour they were currently on, he knew she didn't mean it; anyone could tell from the show tonight that Caroline was a performer, through and through, and loved nothing better than performing for an audience. When she did, she lit up brighter than any light source in the entire galaxy.

He backpedaled, not meaning to make her sad, and made his attempt at looking at the bright side of her situation.

"Oh well, small town hero, small town dreams... It wouldn't have been enough for you in the long run..." He'd done a little Googling after he'd read the article and learned that the Lockwood boy had come from small town America, just like Caroline, and sources said it was one of the things they bonded over. That and estrangement from their fathers before their father's untimely and unexpected deaths. But Lockwood wasn't the only one with "daddy issues" for Caroline to bond with.

Even while reading up on what the gossip rags reported about Caroline and Tyler, Klaus never thought they'd work out; and he'd come to that conclusion before becoming smitten with her on the stage. While Tyler was a player in the NFL with aspirations and goals, they were much more limiting than Caroline's goals were; he was bound by contracts to stay stateside while her tour was taking her over different parts of the globe once the US leg of their tour was over. When he wasn't in season, Tyler did nothing of consequence other than returning home or returning to his home in the city of his team, whereas the gossip sources reported how Caroline loved to travel even when she wasn't on tour. That fact aside, both were too focused on their careers for a long distance relationship to feasibly work, and Klaus sniffed that out even before he'd met Caroline.

But instead of looking up at him with gratitude for sharing his sentiments like he expected, she looked at him with anger and disgust and she suddenly scoffed.

"If that's your way of trying to make me feel better, then try harder, Einstein, because you've failed, miserably!" She replied with a roll of her eyes and she took her plate of snacks and moved away from him quickly. He waited a moment and saw her go and sit in a seat with some vacant chairs in the corner of the room and he followed after her, and sat down in a chair beside her.

"As a matter of fact, I was trying to make you feel better, and it should have done the job, because your spirit could never be free if it here chained and shackled down to a man who cares more about throwing a pigskin around than being with his girlfriend."

"Oh, like you're one to talk about relationships, Niklaus I-Know-My-Way-Around-Every-Brothel-In-Every-City-In-The-Continental-United-States-and-Europe-And-They-Know-Me-By-My-First-Name Mikaelson..." He sat silently staring at her, dumbfounded since it was the last response he expected to get from his opinion which he'd pressed upon her moments ago. When he didn't respond, a finger was suddenly pointing in his face, accompanied by a knowing look and "Aha, I gotcha!" tone.

"You weren't the only one that read up on the other today, Mister..." she said emphatically as she waved her finger at him. "And no matter how good you are on guitar, it's going to take a little more than some hardcore jamming to make me swoon at the sight of you."

"I wouldn't exactly call your reaction swooning, per say, sweetheart," he said, his voice dropping lower and sounding more husky. "Although it did seem to arouse something in you, at least in some aspect of the word..." he added, hooking his booted foot around the back of her chair leg and slowly sliding her chair closer to his. He watched her breathing get slower and more labored and soon their chairs clicked as they slammed together and she looked up at him through her thick, long lashes. He felt himself slowly leaning in searching her eyes for any kind of hesitation or call to stop, but when all he saw was lust, he keep moving forward.

There may have been lust in her eyes, but what Klaus didn't see was her lips starting to pull up into a smile and suddenly she was pulling away and laughing, her free hand that wasn't holding her dessert plate covering her mouth as she laughed.

"Yeah, you're going to have to try a lot harder than that to get into my pants," she said abruptly, and quickly added, "And I'm not even wearing pants right now." She looked down and gestured to her outfit, her same one from earlier that drove him to madness and she seemed to remember this and added disbelievingly, "I'M NOT EVEN WEARING UNDERWEAR!"

She began to laugh and, before he could even think of a response, suddenly Stefan, Lexi and Anna were crossing towards them.

"Hey guys! We've convinced Stefan to go with us, so Anna Bananas, Stefan and I are going to go to Studio 413, are you guys interested?" Lexi asked quickly and excitedly. Klaus was about to reply he'd prefer to hang out in a more intimate setting than a club, but Caroline spoke first.

"Sure, that sounds like fun!" She said quickly, standing and leaving her untouched dessert plate on a nearby table. She linked one arm with Anna and the other with Lexi, but suddenly a pair of hands was doing its best to try and rip her and Lexi apart.

"No fair, bitches! I'm coming too!" Katherine called, her voice warbling, and the three girls knew there was no way that Katherine Pierce, Katherine dances on tables with a bottle of tequila in one hand and a bottle of vodka on the other Pierce, was like that after one glass of champagne.

"Yeah, no you're not," Caroline said sweetly, gently guiding her friend to the exit. "You're going to go drink a lot of water and sleep off the champagne and pain meds, since I'm suspecting you took some right before you came to toast with everyone even though you swore you hadn't."

"No, NO! No, I didn't swore, I promise I told the right!" Katherine attempted to argue, but her speech was becoming harder and harder to follow. "I only took 1 pill bug," she added, but holding up three fingers didn't do any better at convincing anyone. If anything it only made them more nervous.

"Caroline, don't worry about her, I've got her. I want to get a good night's sleep and she just needs to detox and sleep this off, don't worry about it," Bonnie insisted as she wrapped Katherine's arm around her shoulders and helped her walk to the exit.

"Are you sure, Bon? I feel horrible leaving you two," Caroline started to ask but Elijah held up a respectful hand and nodded at her, acknowledging her worry and taking it in stride.

"Don't fret, Caroline. I too am electing to stay behind like Bonnie. I've never been one for the club scene, and I have some paperwork to get done and emails to send, so I'm more than happy to assist Bonnie in taking care of Katherine." Elijah assuaged all Caroline's fears and placed himself on Katherine's other side and helped the girl steer the brunette to the exit and most likely to the bus, where they'd had kept the kitty caged earlier.

Caroline and her two friends merely shook their heads at their poor, drugged up friend and continued on to hop in the car that would take them to the club.

"Klaus, are you coming?" Caroline heard Stefan call over his shoulder as he followed the girls out. She kept walking, trying to pretend she wasn't waiting with bated breath to hear his response. What she didn't see was that he was looking at his cellphone, scrolling through and reading texts messages from someone, and he was getting them more than ever now that the show was over. But instead of typing a response back, he instead stood and shoved his phone in his pocket.

"You know what? I will go," He said, sounding as if he'd tried to talk himself out of going. Caroline sighed and tried to stop her heart from racing. If only she'd been that lucky.

\m/ . \m/


Author's Note:
Hi everyone! Thanks so much for reading!

First off, for those of you reading Green Card, don't worry! I have not, repeat NOT, abandoned it! I actually have cranked out the majority of Chapter 5, and now I just have to write the ending! And I promise I will post it soon!

Secondly, this will be a 3-Part one shot, and ONLY a 3-Part one shot! I do not intend on making this a full-fledged fic, I've got one fic on my plate already, I beta others, and I have other ideas for new fics, so it's just not feasible for me to make this a full length fic.

Thirdly and lastly, I want to give a major shout out to my lovely writer lady peeps who were so supportive with their praise, constructive criticism, and beta-ing: Christine (melanoradrood), Miranda (livingdeadblondegirl), Alex (tumblr-klarolineepiclove;ff-authenticheart) and Deej (tumblr-jomosfamilyjewels; ff-The Deej)

They are the reason this is getting publish. Words poured out of my brain and into a Google Doc, and they chipped away at it and blew off the dust and helped me make this a reality. I owe them so much.

So please R&R and let me know what you think! ;)

Peace & Love,
Becky xo