Okay, I am so sorry if this is not quite edited enough, but I was desperate to get an update done for you guys! I'm back from school now, meaning more writing from me coming your way MORE OFTEN :) Please read, let me know what you think, I know this chapter leaves you asking a lot of questions and some blanks that need to be filled, but don't worry, All of your questions will be resolved in the next few chapters. PLUS! We get a wedding scene! If you guys have ANY suggestions or comments or ideas about the wedding, please feel free to leave a comment, or even message me your idea because I would love to hear them, and I may just take your advice (Of course, giving you the credit!)
So here it is! Hope you enjoy! CHEERS -M
"As mad as I think you are for marrying my brother, I'm just happy he's happy." Rebekah empties her drink, giving me a surprisingly warm smile.
"I'll take it." I nod, returning her smile with one of my own.
"And it only took a few months!" Bonnie returns with another round, sliding into her chair next to mine.
I scrunch my nose and purse my lips, "Uhh, yeah; five years and a few months."
"To Caroline Forbes," Elena raises her glass, smiling across the table at me. "My beautiful best friend who just a few short years ago was a high school student, cheerleading and stressing over algebra." I pick up my glass, "You've grown so much, and you're one of the strongest people I know. I know this has been the biggest decision you've ever made, but no one could deny the joy you exude; and that's all I could ask for."
Tears pool up in my eyes as she goes on, smiling as she tries to blink the moisture from her own eyes.
"I love you so much, and I can't wait to see you live the rest of your life in mad and entirely outrageous happiness. Cheers."
I blush as everyone follows suit and we all cheers to my last night as an un-married woman.
"Go straight to your hotel. No late night stops at your fiancé's place—got it? That's against the rules, and I will be very upset with you." Elena looks serious as she points at me, straight in the face.
"I promise." I nod, holding up my pinkie between us, I grin.
She links her pinkie with mine, and we burst into a fit of giggles, the way we used to when we were in junior high, pinkie-swearing over secrets and promises. Pulling me in, she crushes me against her.
"Get some sleep okay? Big day tomorrow."
I nod against her shoulder, pulling back and giving her a nervous smile.
"Bonnie and I will be at your house bright and early tomorrow, so you better be in your bed, ready to be primped and plucked to your heart's content."
I laugh easily, stepping towards my car. "Why can't I get over the feeling that our rolls are reversed?"
"Just go!" she shoos me.
I laugh on the way back to my hotel room, my mind buzzing with nerves and anticipation. Can this really be happening? Can I really be getting ready to get married tomorrow? And then it hits me...
Yes. Yes I can. And I am.
Six months earlier
"And third," He turns to face us again, his eyes dark. They cloud over in a vicious expression; half man, half animal. "I'm going to hunt Clara down and tear her heart from her chest."
No one moves, no one says anything. His tension and anger roll off of him, engulfing the rest of us in its thick presence.
"Klaus—" My voice is hardly a whisper.
"This isn't up for discussion." His voice is sharp, as if he knows what I'm going to say, and wants to cut my words short. "Save your breath; she will pay."
I look at the floor in front of me—I think I'm still in shock. Memories of him lying cold on the floor, chemical burns down to the bone; how can this be the same man in front of me? That tone of voice... It takes me back to three years ago.
"Her revenge is feeble; I'm not entirely sure what she was thinking. Surely she knew that she hadn't killed me." He is thinking out loud; but his words seem to fade away after the word "killed". He talks as if it is some ridiculous unreality; when the truth is, not long ago... It was almost my reality.
I watch the man in front of me now, his hands shaking with his anger for a woman I hardly know. His words flow out of his mouth, one after the other, as if he's no control over his tongue. Each thought is of his revenge, his rebuke, his pay back.
"...Won't be back in New Orleans, she would have to be an idiot... I'll find her."
I blink at him as he continues his one sided conversation.
I'll find her... the words morph and change in my ears until all I can hear is I'm leaving you.
"Klaus stop," My fists are clenched at my sides, my voice a shaking, vicious hiss. Halting mid-sentence he looks over at me; quivering in the corner of the room.
"Could everybody leave," I try hard to swallow the large lump that's lodged itself in my throat. "Please." I tag on curtly.
There's a beat of silence, and then the shuffling of feet.
I lean into the corner of the room, hoping my shaking hands stay hidden as I cross my arms tightly over my chest. The group files out of the room; I don't even get a chance to ask when Bonnie got here. I can't decide what emotions are pumping through me at the moment. I'm furious with Clara, not only for nearly killing my soon-to-be husband, but for the obvious damage she's done to him. Though his physical wounds have healed, I can't help but look at him now and see the seething, confused, wild man he was when I met him.
I'm hurt, the feeling of loneliness is nearly heartbreaking. He's here, but his mind is somewhere else. He won't even look at me. I ache to be the way we were a week ago; I miss him, and he's standing right here. His eyes are wild and I can't decide if I want to slap him of jump him.
All of this, mixed with the overwhelming relief that still radiates through my body, it's a wonder I'm still able to stand.
And then it's just me and him.
"Caroline listen to me—"
"No you listen," I push myself away from the wall, cross the room in long strides; pulling myself up tall so resemble less of a kicked puppy. "Klaus, maybe your ways of dealing with this crap worked in the past. But things have changed. You've changed!," He watches me, his eyes are unreadable. "Okay, you can't just storm off and leave everything behind for a couple of years when the mood strikes you!"
His voice comes back, just as strong as mine, "You expect me to do nothi—"
"I expect you to communicate with me. Is that such an outrageous thing to ask the man I'm engaged to?!" Adrenaline surges through my veins; my hands are no longer shaking. "You think I'm just going to sit around, twiddling my thumbs and waiting for you to maybe come back into my life!?" I pause, his silence is infuriating, "I'm sorry, do you know me at all?" the corners of his mouth twitch, and his shoulders are tense. He's pissed.
He used to terrify me like this.
"Do you underst—"
"No, do you understand Nik?" My mouth has gotten away from me, and I don't think I could stop it if I wanted to. And I don't. "I just spent the last week hoping you weren't dead. I didn't know if you were ever going to wake up," My lungs hurt from yelling, but I'm too out of control to care.
The stunned expression on his face seems to be permanently etched into his features. I let out a heavy sigh, trapping my hands once again as I cross my arms firmly.
"I just got you back." My voice breaks, I'm still angry but I'm too drained to sound it. "You are not just running off to track down some worthless—"
"So what then!?" He throws his hands into the air between us, his rationality faltering under the tension.
"So don't you think I'm just as pissed as you are!?" His eyebrows pull together, my words taking him off guard "I mean give me a little credit!" Reaching out I shove hard against his chest. Unlike the night of his birthday, when I do this, he's solid as a brick wall; not budging an inch.
His hand snatches my wrist, holding my hand wear it's pressed against his sternum. My fingers curl into his shirt as I try to claw him, my attempts to jerk my hand out of his death grip are pathetic.
"Let me go—"
"What are you saying?" His voice has come down a few disables. He's staring at me; into me.
"God," I push a hand through my hair, " you know what, just go on—" I wave my hand at him flippantly, "Waste another thousand years chasing after your most recent offender like you did with Katherine; tear her to pieces, dance on her grave; by all means! Believe me I would like nothing more than to see her dead. But just know that even if you do catch her—that does not mean that you have won; all that means is that she has stolen just that much more of your time. And while you're off chasing that sad, pathetic, hopeless woman around in circles; don't think for a second that I'll come chasing after you."
"I will not rest—"
Silencing him as my mouth crashes into his, we stumble into each other, the edge of his sharp retort hot on his tongue. I grab handfuls of his hair, pulling him near to me as he stands idol; either too shocked or too mad to reciprocate.
And then his hands are on me. His fingers find my neck, his thumbs tilting my chin to meet his, meeting my heated kiss with passion of his own. The sheer hunger in this one act does confusing things to the anger that boils just under my skin.
Our breath's battle between us, our mouths are not moving in the electrifying way they usually do, instead they fight; both of us striving for the upper hand.
My fingers curl into the collar of his shirt, my lungs burning for oxygen, my head fuzzy as all the frustration coursing through me melts into lust; my heart pounding loudly against his, the loud beats of them filling my ears.
I know we should be resolving things, talking them out, rationalizing. If we were smart, we would sit down and talk like grownups. He was almost dead a few hours ago for Christ sake. All of my rational thoughts seem to turn to liquid and drain from my mind as his hands find the waist of my jeans, hooking his thumbs inside and pulling my against him.
Jesus I've missed this...
The hotel room is so quiet it's chilling. I take an extra hot, extra long shower, shaving my legs, and conditioning my hair. I don't get out until the small bathroom is filled with steam and my skin is pink and pruney. Rubbing moisturizer into my skin, I massage my tense muscles.
I knew being the neurotic control freak I am, planning a wedding wouldn't exactly be easy. What I didn't expect was Elena hardly letting me do a thing.
"I just need you to choose your favourites and I'll do the rest."
"Ah ah, just pick a centre piece."
"Why can't I just—"
"Ugh. The one on the left."
I guess she foresaw me making myself and the people around me miserable with cake designs and tuxedo shopping.
Wrapping myself in one of the extra plush bathrobes, I collapse on top of the comforter, turning the TV on; burning through the channels until I find something that is neither a reality show or something pornographic. I listen to the simple plotline until I can no longer keep my eyes open, and my mind begins to drift...
I wake up what seems like seconds later, only the light streaming in from my window and the knocking on my door prove otherwise. Why do I still feel exhausted?
Pushing the hotel blankets off of my legs, I hop out of bed, and scurry to the door.
"Happy Wedding day!" Bonnie, Elena and Rebekah are all standing in the hallway, Rebekah looks about as tired as I feel.
"Morning." I smile and push my hair out of my face. I can feel it's wild looking and crusty from sleeping on it all wrong. I step aside so that can all file in, Bonnie is holding an armful of dresses in white bags, and Rebekah has an oversized leather bag over one shoulder.
"Go brush your teeth and wet your hair, we have three hours to make you look flawless and the rest of us presentable." Elena shoos me towards the bathroom and I silently thanks God for the millionth time that she is my friend and maid-of-honour.
I am sat down in front of my mirror while Bonnie rolls curlers into my hair, and Rebekah is doing a careful job on my nails.
I stare at my reflection, my heart speeding up a little as I watch Elena in the mirror unzip the long dress bag hanging on the back of the door; my wedding dress. I close my eyes and take a deep breath. Is it possible to be so happy and so sad all at the same time? My throat becomes thick with tears as I press my lips together.
This is a happy day. The happiest day of my life. I've dreamed about what I would say, what I would wear, where it would happen and how... my imagination producing endless ideas of the perfect day. The only thing I never had to imagine was who would walk me down the aisle.
Opening my eyes again, if I could have one wish... the only thing that could makes this day better, would be my family, to walk me down the aisle. To give me away at my wedding.
My father... my mother.
The fresh wound aches in the pit of my stomach as I think of her for the thousandth time since that horrible day... if I could only have my mother back...
"Hey," Stefan sits up straighter on the bench as I approach, his eyes filled with curiosity, my cryptic reasoning for inviting him here was more than vague. "What's up?"
I smile, nervous knots twisting in my stomach, why are my hands shaking?
I take a seat next to him, and turn my engagement ring anxiously.
"Caroline?" Stefan's voice has an edge of worry, and when I look sideways at him, he has his serious vampire look on, a deep crease in between his brows. "What is it, what's wrong?"
"Nothing," I shake my head, turning slightly towards him, and take a deep breath. "I just—I have a question that I need to ask you."
His frown deepens, as if there's something in my tone that he doesn't like; but he stays quiet, intent on hearing what I have to say.
Spit it out Caroline.
"So when I got engaged, I thought that my mom would be walking me down the aisle." I work to keep my words slow and defined, my voice sounds fragile to my ears. "But, since... I mean since she..." I swallow hard, looking back down at my ring, giving it another hard twist.
Stefan's gentle hand moves from the bench to my shoulder, giving it the smallest of squeezes as my words, I notice, have stopped.
"I was thinking that maybe I could do it alone, you know? Like that girl in that Youtube video, but then I started thinking that... I don't really know if I could do it. Not have someone beside me as I make the biggest decision of my life." My words are coming out faster now, my mouth moving faster than my brain. "So then I was trying to think of someone that I care about, you know, a friend who's always been there for me... And I thought of you." I look up at him now; his expression has softened during my speech, and his mouth is pulled up on one side in the smallest of smiles.
"Caroline, are you asking me to give you away?" His voice is almost as quite as mine, and is so gentle that I want to start crying, again.
"Yes please," I sniffle , wiping my nose with my sleeve.
His face breaks into a fully fledged smile now, and he pulls me into a lung-compressing hug. His laugh reverberates through my body as we sit on the bench, hugging and laughing, because this, this is a friendship worth holding on to.
Do you guys want to know what happened in those last 6 months? keep on reading! Favorite, review and follow! xx