A/N: So this is my first Kennett fic. We get to know about Bonnie's feelings towards her death in this chapter. Aaand a mysterious young man appears. Hopefully, Kol will be in the next chapter. Oh, and I cannot even describe my feelings towards this ship. So I better won't start. Just saying.

Chapter One - Paying the Piper

"It kills me sometimes, how people die." - Death, The Book Thief

"Give me a hand, Bon!" Elena was reaching out for the fruit shining seductively with its provocative red. She had climbed up the fence just to taste the apples of the deciduous tree. Bonnie groaned. She was standing on the sidewalk trying to talk some sense into her best friend. "Elena! I don't think this is a good idea!" She knew the owner of the tree: A grumpy, old man who had a weird obsession with his garden. He even chased cats entering his property with his rifle. People said he'd been acting like that since he came back from the Vietnam War.

"Get off my property, vermin!" The voice alarmed Bonnie. "Forget the damn apples, Elena! He saw you!" Franticly, her friend looked up for the best way to jump off when the sound of the shot made Bonnie scream. Elena fell on the sidewalk. Bonnie sped to her. Her hands were shaking and she had no idea what to do or how to ensure she was alive. A sob escaped her mouth when she saw the apple bearing the tracks of the teeth of her best friend. She was lying there peacefully. Just like Snow White, Bonnie thought. Was Elena dead? Did she die as a 10-years-old now?

"Don't worry. She's okay." The voice was so soft that Bonnie believed its words immediately. It was a young man with dark hair. "It's you, you should be worried about," he said giving a glance at Elena. "She will be your end" Bonnie could only remember his black overcoat when she watched the mysterious man walking past her. She wanted to know what the hell that meant but Elena's laughter washed away her confusion.

"Oh, Bon! You were hilarious! Did you really think I was dead?" Then, in the midst of her laughter, she froze. Like someone paused a scene of a movie. Bonnie looked around her. Everything stood still. No wind, no child's laugh. Only a sudden realization striking her: This couldn't be real. She was not 10-years old. "I'd say, this is not entertaining at all!" Bonnie shrunk back checking all directions for the source of the words. "Chop, chop. Let's go back!" The next moment she felt a soft touch on her forehead and watched how the scenery around her faded.

Bonnie inhaled. It was like her lungs were pinched for days. She was sitting on a ground hard as stone. Irritated, she rubbed her knees. Her heart started to race with the realization that she was trapped in endless darkness. There was not a single spark or spot that could give her the hope to escape it. Besides, she didn't trust her feet; she felt like she haven't used them for years. Bonnie tried to think. She had to keep herself distracted from this whatever-placeā€“it-was and its complete darkness. She remembered saying goodbye to Jeremy and the soft touch of his lips. It was the last thing she would ever be able to feel.

Bonnie had always been critical about exaggerated storylines full of martyrs. Anti-Heroes were more interesting and deep. On a retrospective angle, her death and all that she'd done in her life felt like a bad joke now. There had been so much pain and sacrifices that Bonnie was sure if her life were a book or a TV show she would never show interest in it. She did not even feel like a martyr. More like someone who had to pay for her mistakes. Pay for not listening to the dangerous Original, Kol. Pay for putting the town in danger for her friend.

"No! Bon, you're totally the Xena of Mystic Falls and I'm so proud of you!" Caroline would probably say something like that to cheer her up. Whatever she might say once she found out, Bonnie wouldn't be there to hear it. She wouldn't be there whenever Caroline's eyes were sparkling out of excitement; Or when Elena had a collapse. On the other hand, she wouldn't have to deal with her father being overprotective anymore; Or being alarmed whenever a new figure showed up in Mystic Falls. She wouldn't have to give Damon aneurysms. Or Klaus, or Kol, or..Elena. Wasn't that great?

Yeah, she had to hang around in this darkness but there was this thing about people getting used to anything in their lives. And this darkness could be compared with blindness. There were a lot of people losing their eyesight due to an accident or a disease. So if these people managed to get used to that so would Bonnie. Even if this was purgatory and she was trapped here forever.

Suddenly, Bonnie remembered her Grams and her sad look when they were walking hand in hand to eternity. All her walls of thoughts she built up to distract herself crumbled piece by piece. The most impressive moments in her life came back striking her heart with a new doze of pain: The day she stood at the window the whole night because her father was out of town for the first time, the day when they were sitting on Elena's bed watching the flying feathers, the day her Grams was sleeping peacefully on her bed..

In all these years all she wanted was family. What was left from her family were her friends. Still, most of the time, she had been alone. And all she could do now was submit to her pain. Why was she lying to herself anyway? Here was no one around she had to demonstrate her power to. There was no need for pretending. She would always miss being alive. She would always miss the fights and even the losses. And most of all, she would miss the feeling of hope. Tears painted her face with pain.

"Grams?" It was such a desperate call through the fight against her tears. She knew that her Grams wasn't here. It was hopeless. She leaned back her head and closed her eyes to pretend there would be light once she opened them. First, she thought she had a vision. There was the sound of steps coming closer and echoing like someone was walking down a big hall. Bonnie opened her eyes when she heard the creaking sound of a door.

The young witch protected her eyes with the back of her hand when a storm of light came in. Right in front of her was a dark figure. But she was not able to look at him. This bright light was too much for her eyes to handle. "I apologize for having you kept waiting, beauty." He kneeled down to her. "You remember me, right?" Bonnie didn't know what to say. If she could only see him! The man laughed "I'm sorry. Where are my manners? You can't even see me, can you?" He covered her eyes with his hand and Bonnie could swear to have felt the touch of his hand before.

When he removed his hand the sharp and bright light suddenly became bearable and Bonnie hesitantly looked in the face of the stranger. Now that she could see his dark eyes she remembered the visions. The vision with a scene from her childhood when she thought Elena was dead and it turned out to be a bad joke of her best friend. That was the man with dark hair and the overcoat. It was also the one who froze the scenery and took her inside this - she looked around - cell.

"Now I remember," she said carefully. The young man clapped his hands. "Great! It's time for the first meeting then!" And without a warning he placed both his fore- and middle-finger on her forehead inviting the surroundings into a disappearing, wild dance.

When Bonnie opened her eyes she was in a great dining hall with glory portraits hanging on its walls and bright light. There was a festive table laid out with silver cutlery and also shining glasses waiting to be filled with the icy water standing next to them.

Bonnie was interested in the paintings and portraits. She stepped closer to regard it. There was a painting showing a man sitting on a bench and holding his hand in a refusing gesture towards Death that came to take him. Another one was the popular painting of Socrates accepting the cup of poison as his penalty. "Well, well, look, who's decided to join me"

Bonnie felt a shiver inside her. Not only because she was so damn focused on the greatness of this hall and the paintings that she forgot to check her surroundings for other beings. More, because she knew that voice was nothing but trouble. It belonged to the most unpredictable being she'd ever known.