Hi, and welcome to my new story :) So, basically, this is my version of season 5 written from Stefan's point of view. I'll pick up from where we left of in season 4, which means Damon and Elena together and Stefan acting like a vampire submarine in the bottom of a lake. That being said I won't write any romantic Delena scenes because I'm not a masochist, their relationship will be merely mentioned and yes, there will be Stelena because hey, this is me after all. I'm not sure about all the other couples, I think I'll just go with the flow when it comes to them, if and when I get an idea concerning them. I will write strictly from Stefan's pov, even though there might be few small parts where other characters are talking without him actually being around. I'll keep the characters in character, or at least I'll try to. I hope you' will like it :)
Vampires do not require sleep, so it's surprising how fast they embrace it once it comes.
Their process of falling asleep lacks few details which make comfortable slumber less comfortable, or at least less appealing. There's no lying awake for few minutes, feeling the darkness fall all over you, feeling the sleep creeping through your mind after few minutes of having your eyes closed. They do not experience tiredness either, which is why lying in bed with your eyes closed is not a luxury for them, it's an unnecessary waste of time.
They simply do not get it, feeling like you're floating on a cloud, blanket over your bare skin, wind rustling through your hair.
Elena remembers that feeling very well since she was a human not so long ago. Damon says it will disappear with years, those little things, small details which make you truly human. Like falling asleep or taste of chocolate on the tip of your tongue or wrapping your fingers around a boiling cup of tea.
Being able to remember the experience, but not being able to live it is one of the worst feelings in the world, which is why Elena became weary to sleep. It would come to her in a second, so fast that when she woke up she wouldn't even remember closing her eyes. She would also wake up with a hole full of disappointment in the pit of her stomach.
She slept only when it was highly necessary, or when everyone else did.
But lately she's been looking forward to it, to those few hours she could spend truly dead, but feeling completely and utterly alive. Something has been calling for her, not inviting her, but begging her to come.
Her eyelids fall closed and she travels. Darkness surrounds her, nothingness. Then the mist appears. Trails of white in the eternal blackness of despair. Spots, freckles, until it's covering the whole surface, which is infinitive.
First it starts with a name. Her name. Elena. The voice is hoarse, heavy. She doesn't recognize it, but it makes her feel like she's blushing, like her cheeks are burning with a color of fire. It makes her feel like the voice is closer than it actually is. She can feel it tapping its fingertips on the edge of her mind.
She dreams of the voice which keeps calling her name repetitively. She can see it as darkness turns into colors of the rainbow which disappear as grayness takes over.
Darkness and colors and the voice, everything disappears when the grayness takes its turn in controlling her dream. It feels like someone is tearing a thin sheet of paper in half.
Water starts pouring from nowhere into everywhere. She can still hear her name over the murmur of water. The voice is hushed now, like it doesn't believe in the possibility of being heard. She can see the outlines of someones face. Sandy hair. Hard jaw. Soft cheekbones.
When she wakes up she realizes it wasn't a dream, it was a nightmare. Or both.
Or a warning.
She speaks to nobody about it, but she can still hear the voice long after she wakes up, calling her, luring her into sleep. Like it wants to show her something.
It's always calling. It's always the same word.
It's been 86 days. Or at least I think so. Time is slipping through my fingers like sand. In the beginning I was counting hours as well, but after some time I lost track of them. I'm getting weaker and weaker with every hour, and every time I fall unconscious, or die, or whatever the hell is happening to me, it lasts longer that it did the last time.
Maybe few minutes longer, maybe few hours, or maybe a whole day. I'm not sure.
I'm not even sure the world exists anymore, or that I do.
My lungs keep filling with water like balloons. When there's too much water in them they pop, like someone pierced them with a needle, and I can hear the sound drumming inside of my ears. There's no more air. My eyelids flutter and everything disappears.
Then I wake up with empty lungs and screams no one can hear because the water and steel work together to muffle them and the nightmare starts again.
How did you spend your Summer?
Oh, you know, drowning million of times during three months which feel like three centuries, locked in a steel box by my evil doppelganger, waiting for someone to come and this may surprise you but, no one ever did. No matter who I called for and how many times, no one ever came. So, that's how I spent my Summer, you know, the usual.
It's been 86 days but don't hold on my word because I'm running out of days.
Whenever I pass out or die or whatever, I have this weird dream which doesn't feel like a dream at all but what else could it be? I'm floating in the black surrounding, there's nothing around me, nothing at all. Mist appears around me, shinning my way and my features and the water starts pouring from the edges of blackness and I feel like waves are washing me over to the shore. I find myself in a room I don't recognize and I wonder how can I dream about a room I have no memory of.
I recognize the person sleeping in the room, though.
She's sleeping. I try to say her name, I try to scream it, but the only thing that comes out is a whisper. My voice is as gentle and soft as the sound of her name or seeing it on paper. Elena.
I move towards her, my step is so light until I realize I'm still floating, I'm not even touching the floor.
Every time I try to reach out for her, to touch her, I wake up. I never learn on my mistakes. Sometimes I try to restrain myself so I can stay longer, but my hand always flies towards her involuntary.
Since the first time I dreamed about her I keep calling for her even when I'm conscious. I'm not sure why because she never comes, she never wakes up. Why would she, anyway?
She chose not to be with me. Maybe this is my punishment for wishing she would chose me above him.
Oh, here we go again. My lungs are falling apart, stitch by stitch. They're so heavy I wish they leave my body already. I can't handle how they're pressing so close to every organ in their proximity. My lips fall open, my nostrils do not twitch anymore, my heart is more dead than it usually is. Boom. My lungs explode and the water washes over my insides. Boom, boom, boom, it keeps drumming in my ears, like feet hitting the pavement while running.
My eyelids flutter before falling down.
Darkness surrounds me.
I'm moving. I'm falling unconscious again, but I can feel movement. I feel like I'm in a boat, under the decks, moving through the water. I fight to stay conscious but the water is still leaking through every pore of my body.
The next thing I know I can feel blood on my lips. It pours into my throat and I almost choke on it because I think it's water, coming to fill my lungs, coming to rip my away from the world a little bit more. When I realize it's blood, I feel like my insides are smiling. I pull some more blood from the bag, then more, more, more until nothing is left and the new blood bag replaces it.
I'm so hungry.
Honestly, I would prefer plunging my fangs into an artery which contains infinity of hot blood, and I would drink until there's no more space in my body, until I feel wobbly and sick, until I pass out and wake up only to find myself hungry again.
I want to say this to them, whoever they are, whoever saved me, and I don't even care what their reaction would be.
But I don't even have enough strength to open my eyes, so I clearly can't say a word.
Cold blood from the bag will have to do. For now.
I feel like I'm going crazy. I feel like I am crazy.
Strength surges through my body like electricity. My hearing is sharpened, the sounds surrounding me are clear again. There's no more drumming in my ears and it's not like I'm going to miss it.
I can hear the murmur of water and rustling of leaves on the trees and low hum of the night. I know this sounds cheesy but the world is a really beautiful place with all of its little magnificent details we take for granted every single day. After three months in a box underwater you come to realize that.
I'm lying on the ground, the ground under me is muddy probably because I was laid on it while still wet. I'm still wet. My clothes is so close to my skin like it's trying to sink into me. My hair is sticking to my forehead and my skin feels like rusty leaves. When I touch the ground with my fingertips I feel like it's going to swallow me whole. My fingers are turning into dust when I press them onto the ground.
I can smell the unpleasant scent of stale water and the sweet scent of blood while it keeps pouring down my throat, while I keep gulping hungrily.
The voices are so clear and so close now. Damon. Elena. Elena. Damon.
Is he okay? Is he alive? Is he drinking? I think I saw his eyelids flutter. His fingers are pressing onto to the ground. He looks so pale. He looks like he's falling apart.
I am falling apart. I've been falling apart for a long time now.
I can smell her and not in that weird way vampires can smell everything and everyone, like animals. I can really smell her. I can smell the almond lotion coating her skin, the one she used to keep in the corner of shower cabin in my bathroom. I can smell vanilla shampoo in her long, hazelnut hair and it's tickling my senses. Also the smell of new clothes because Elena has zero knowledge on how to do her laundry.
On top of all those scents is Damon's bourbon and I don't know if it's coming from him or her but it makes me sick to the stomach.
Maybe I've had enough. I gather enough strength to raise my hand and shove the bag from my lips.
I can't will myself to open my eyes because I'm not ready to scan her face with my tired eyes, I'm not ready to look in her eyes which are the color of chocolate, and I'm not ready to remind myself I'm not allowed to move her hair from her face when it falls in her eyes and she's too lazy to do it herself. I'm also not ready to look at my brother because I want to hate him but I can't even will myself to dislike a shitload of his imperfections and that only makes me hate myself more than I already do. I wonder is it a coincidence that I've been drowning in the color of his eyes for three months straight.
Or maybe it's been a week. Or a year. I have no idea.
I can feel her fingers on my cheek and I know it's her because how can you ever forget the touch of a woman who loved you and hurt you more than anyone else ever did? I tense under her touch and she notices it for sure.
"Stefan," her voice is hoarse and heavy, light and soft, and for a moment I don't know am I hearing it or remembering it.
Now she's the one who keeps calling my name.
They take me home.
Home. It tastes salty in my mouth. It tastes wrong.
These thick walls which are never thick enough to protect us, old furniture which somehow manages to look new year after year, people in it. This place used to be my home, where my brother drank his alcohol and played piano when he thought no one was listening. Where I wrote in my diary so I can keep track of my thoughts and where all of my books live. Where Elena used to wake up next to me, hear head on my chest, her arm around mine, her hair under my nose.
This place never felt so much less than a home than it does in this moment.
How are you feeling brother?
Damon chuckles. Elena stays silent, buried in place like a statue, as if she doesn't know what to do with herself.
Let's take you home, we can talk there.
When we move into the living room, there she is, sitting on a couch. Big, blond curls are sitting silently on her tense shoulders. There's a light frown on her face, her eyebrows are close together and she keeps crinkling her nose like there's an itch she's too lazy to scratch. When she notices us standing there she forces a smile to her lips. She stands up abruptly, faster than my eyes can follow and throws her arms around me, pulling me closer to her.
"Stefan," she gasps my name, shutting her eyes closed, like this is a dream and she doesn't want to let it escape.
I bury my face in her hair, the lavender scent of her shampoo invading my nostrils. "Caroline," until now I didn't even realize how much I actually miss her.
She lets go of me, but keeps her fingers wrapped around my arms, checking me out, like she wants to convince herself I'm really here. She keeps taking me in for few more seconds when she finally says, "Thank god, I was worried you will turn into a fish!"
Elena takes a small, but loud, intake of air, but I chuckle. "Nope," I shake my head for emphasis, "But SpongeBob? It's all true. There's a whole world we know nothing about, Caroline," I make her smile and think how this is the best thing a person can do - make someone else smile, when I realize she would probably smile to anything I say at this moment.
I smile after her nevertheless, and soon enough both of us are laughing.
This is what means to have a best friend. Someone you can always count on to say the most inappropriate thing at the worst time and make you laugh when you want to go on a killing spree.
Damon puts an end to our charade, and Caroline looks at him sharply.
That's my girl, always giving my brother an evil eye. Sometimes I live ferociously through her.
We all sit down, and Damon pours some alcohol for each of us. Caroline and Elena decline, but instead of the glass he's offering me, I snap the bottle out of his hand and gulp a half of it in one breath. Their eyes go wide as they settle on me, but no one says anything. That's the beauty of it, there's nothing to say. It's like bringing your family member home from the hospital and asking them are they sure they want to eat the whole piece of cake.
I fall into the couch, sinking in it. "So, how long has it been?"
I've noticed it's still pleasantly warm outside so I'm thinking couple of months.
"Little less than three months," Caroline answers shamefully.
I nod. "Well, I would have preferred Bora, Bora, but.." Caroline's smile is so fake and Elena looks so uncomfortable it almost hurts me to live. "So what did you guys do?" I try to keep this low key. I do not want them coddling me like an infant.
"Elena and me started college," Caroline says proudly. I'm glad she's cooperating.
"First they let you guys graduate, and now they let you into college?" I smirk, because it's true. If it weren't for compulsion these girls wouldn't graduate even if their life depended on it. "Mystic Falls is a very desperate place."
There's more than one meaning to this sentence but none of them pick up on it since Caroline laughs and this time it's not forced.
Caroline Forbes has the most beautiful laugh you have ever heard in your life. I know I should be saying this about the woman I love, but Elena sounds like a choking horse while laughing. Now, her smile is a completely different story, I bet it could cure cancer, but her laugh scares children.
Caroline on the other hand laughs gracefully.
"And you brother?" I shift my attention to Damon, my look piercing through him, "What did you do? Play jigsaw? Write poetry? Act like one of those old, stalker boyfriends on campus?"
This is the first time I make a reference to Damon and Elena's relationship (it's not like I had more time, being busy buried alive and all), and there's so much tension in the room you could cut it with a knife.
Don't get me wrong, if Elena was still with me I probably wouldn't let her leave the bed either, but if my brother weren't picking up my calls for three months I would tell her listen, I really have to leave you now to find my brother since we're almost two centuries old and he's the only family I have since everyone we knew are pretty much dead. Pretty much being key words.
Damon doesn't answer though, he smirks in that annoying way of his when he has nothing to say so he thinks that grimace is enough, and sips on his drink.
"So, how did you know?" I ask curiously.
"You weren't returning Caroline's calls," and so she speaks. Her voice is soft, like silk, and in a way, the drumming sound is back. But it's not the sound of my lungs exploding, but of my heart trying to beat through my chest.
"Excuse me?" I ask confused, because really? That was their major clue?
"It made sense for you to avoid mine, or Damon's calls, because.." she stops herself. Remember no humanity Elena? Sometimes I miss her. At least she had guts to say it.
Is she feeling guilt? Shame? Or is she just uncomfortable?
"But when Caroline told us you're avoiding her calls as well, we knew something is wrong."
I turn to Caroline. "Sorry, reception wasn't so good down there. I left a complaint, though."
She smiles uncomfortably.
It seems like their sense of humor drowned with me.
"Then there's Silas," Damon continues, the look in his eyes distant.
"I'll be damned, he actually stayed here," I ponder over my own words, because that seems like a really dumb idea. So there must be something for him here.
"He always looked like you.." Elena's voice is distant now.
"You thought he's me?" I cock my eyebrow at no one exactly, but at all of them at once.
Their silence is my answer.
I can't fucking believe this. Some guy strolls in town with my face and they can't tell a fucking difference between me and a million years old warlock. Remember when Katherine came into town? I knew it's not Elena the moment I pulled her into a hug. Silas was fooling them three whole months.
"Like I said - " Elena tries to defend them, or maybe just herself.
"Yeah, I know, he always looked like me," I roll my eyes so hard that for a moment I think they're going to fall out of my skull, "It's because he looks like me."
"What?" all of them say at the same time, surprised.
"He looks like me," I lock my eyes on Elena, "It seems you're not the only one with a doppelganger," I say to her.
"What?" she asks again. Sometimes she can be really daft. You're not supposed to think that about the woman you love, right?
I wiggle my brows. "Are you jealous?" I joke, but she just keeps looking at me like she can't recognize me.
"How do you know?" Damon basically spits those words on me.
"He told me right before he packed me like a meat stash."
"Oh," Damon throws his arms, "Then it must be true."
Is he really going to fight me on this? Because I haven't punched anyone in a long time.
"How is that even possible?" Elena is still in a daze.
"I have no idea," I shrug, "I wasn't able to play Sherlock Holmes since I was dying few times a day for three months," I say calmly. There's no bitterness or spitefulness in my voice, but Elena still flinches.
"We'll have to ask Bonnie when she comes back," Caroline adds before either of us says anything else. You know how I said Caroline can say the most inappropriate thing? Well, she knows how to do the opposite as well.
Wait, when Bonnie comes back? Are these people on crack? I'm too tired to ask, though.
"How did you know where I am, though?" I furrow my brows, my own curiosity surfacing.
Caroline looks at Elena, Elena looks at me with her doe eyes, and Damon looks at the floor.
"I had this dream," she says with the most dramatic voice I've heard which creates a hole in my stomach. Please don't mention the darkness. And the mist. And me standing over you while you're sleeping. Or me calling your name. "It was dark," she continues. Fuck.
So yeah, she says all the things I hoped she won't say, except me standing over her bed. In her version she saw me drowning even though in the beginning she didn't know it was me, she couldn't tell. I guess I remember the dream from my own perspective, not hers.
How is this possible, though? Was I in her dream? Was she in mine? Did our dreams collide?
I do not tell her about me dreaming the exact same thing. I'm not ready for that conversation or more questions or anything else, to be honest.
I'm so tired. It's funny, people would think I would be weary to close my eyes again, but that's exactly what I want to do. I want to sleep.
"I'm tired," I say as I stand up, "Is my room still there or did you guy turn it into a gym?"
Why are everyone staring at me like that?
"It's there," it's Damon who speaks, and I move upstairs before anyone gets a chance to stop me.
My room looks exactly the same. It's like no one was here since I left. No one probably was.
My bed. Writing desk. Books. A lot of junk.
A lot of memories.
When I turn the lights on they're dim, as always. Just the way I like it.
I walk over to the table in the middle of the room and there it is, like seeing her isn't painful enough.
I grab the wooden frame and lift it in the air. A picture. A reminder. Seems like a lifetime ago. Maybe it was. She's wearing that necklace in the picture, the one I gave her. It's completely absurd how much her not wearing that necklace anymore hurts. It's like that piece of jewelry represented something, represented us.
I tighten my grip around it. All of a sudden I'm angry. No, I'm furious. I want to throw it in a wall, out the window, into the fireplace. I want it far away from me. I have a feeling like getting rid of this picture will also help me get rid of every memory.
You know what sucks the most? You fall in love with someone, and they fall in love with you. And you're 160 years old but you don't feel a day older than 17. Your life is a fucking catastrophe, it's like being involved in this constant war with a world around yourself, but somehow being with this person makes everything better. Even when you don't see them or kiss them or hug them for days just the idea of being with them makes everything better. And when you finally get to do all those things it's the best feeling in the world. You feel like you never kissed anyone before.
I mean, I get it. People break up. Shit happens, life happens, people fall out of love and you can't expect them not to fall in love again. But did it have to be my brother? I just want to scream from the top of my lungs at the universe, did it have to be my brother? How unfair is that? Why did he have to come here and meet here and fall in love with her and why did she have to fall in love with him? When did she fall in love with him and what did I do wrong and why wasn't I enough? I'm so angry at them for falling in love with each other and so angry at myself for not being good enough that I want to burn the whole world down. I have a feeling I would, starting from this house, if she wasn't standing there on the doorway.
"Can I help you with something?" I put the picture on the table, head down, so she doesn't see what I've been looking at if she moves deeper into the room.
That's one more thing about Elena. The way I can feel her, constantly. It's not one of those useful vampire tactics where we can smell and feel everything around us to protect ourselves. All of my organs collapse when I feel her near. My blood stops pumping through my veins and my heart keeps squeezing inside of my chest but there's nothing coming out of it and I hold my breath until I realize I have no breath. I feel like I'm sinking into quicksand and when she appears in front of me she pulls me right up.
"I just wanted to see how you're doing," she says silently.
I turn around and she's so beautiful like a secret hiding spot you used to have as a child but haven't been there for quite some time so when you go back there you remember why you thought it's beautiful in the first place. I want to walk over to her and hug her and kiss her and screw her brains out but I can't. You know why? Because she's with my brother.
And my anger resurfaces.
Still, I can't keep myself from wondering does he appreciate the same things I did when it comes to her and does he find that small, heart shaped mole on her back adorable. Damon is not a kind of person to notice these things but I hope for her he is so that me acting like this is okay with me is actually worth something. I really do hope he loves her in a way he didn't know how to love anyone before her and that for her he's someone he never knew how to be when it comes to me so all of this pain can actually be for something.
I turn around. "I'm glorious."
She stills her eyes on me. "If you ever want to talk," she starts talking.
"I do not need a therapist," I snap at her even though it wasn't my attention.
Her eyes go wide. "No, but I thought maybe you need a - "
"Friend?" I finish for her, hoping she will realize how ridiculous all of this is.
I think this is the moment where I decide I don't love her anymore.
No, I'm pretty sure.
See? It's not here anymore. Puff. Gone.
"Thanks, but I already have a friend," I snap once again, this time it was my attention to do so.
She's in shock. She just keeps staring at me for few moments until she finally nods, "It's okay, me and Caroline have to go back to campus anyway."
I don't say anything to that so she turns around and leaves.
I wish she screamed at me. I wish she snapped back at me. I wish she said what the hell, Stefan?
But no, she's probably thinking hey, the guy was dying while I was screwing his brother, so I'll let it pass.
I wonder how many times can she let is pass before she explodes.
AN: So, should I keep writing this? What did you think of the first chapter?
I'm not writing Stefan ooc, but I'm not going to write him all broody and mopey and stuff. I'm going to handle his issues in another way, he's not going to be asshole in a Damon kind of way, but he also won't keep feeling sorry for himself and he won't let anyone else feel sorry for him either. Honestly, imo, it leaves a lot more room for character development than if you write a character in a redeeming way from the beginning. I hope you trust me on this one! :)
A bit on Stefan and Elena's dreams. I actually took that bit from the original books. When Elena died she was able to come to Stefan's dreams to warn him of upcoming danger. I know Stefan wasn't dead, but he was basically somewhere in between at times. Also, in the books it happened abruptly, but I'm going to give it a meaning. More about that later.
Tell me how you feel about it in the reviews! :)