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Something Wicked This Way Comes

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"You don't scare me," sneered the voice of former reporter Logan Fell, his features flushed as he knelt on the ground, his back arched slightly due to the immense pain it caused him just to straighten up because of all the wooden bullets which lined his stomach.

The blonde he was being interrogated by merely smirked, lifting up a foot before aiming a well executed kick to his chest, which sent him backwards, a howl of pain flying past his lips. Blood red lipstick, usually reserved for the odd night out, yet on this occasion used to make herself appear as a force to be reckoned with, coated her lips, which occasionally drew back to reveal an array of pearl white teeth.

"Well," she murmured, leaning in, practically tasting the loathing radiating from his skin. "I guess that makes you the biggest idiot in the world." She drew back, glaring at him. "Who turned you?" His silence infuriated her. "Oh come on, Fell. We grew up in the same town, a town that used to be vampire free, and I'm expected to believe you woke up one day sporting fangs and a new dietary requirement? Who turned you?"

"Does your mommy know what you are?" Logan spat, wearing a disdainful expression. "A hunter? I'm sure the Liz I remember wouldn't want her precious daughter mixed up in council business... or are you unaware Mystic Falls has a secret council designed to do 'your job'?"

"My mom is none of your concern." Caroline Forbes, on the cusp of twenty two years of age, aimed another kick in his direction, retrieving a stake from her pocket, poising it over his heart. "But I'll tell her you were thinking about her."

Logan snarled and lunged for her neck, fangs bared, but something shot past her face, knocking him backwards. He lay there for a moment, stunned, until something dug sharply into his chest, aligning with his heart perfectly before it was stopped forever, his skin immediately shrivelling away, now an ash grey in colour, his mouth slack from the sheer surprise he'd felt at having someone he'd grown up with (rightfully) managing to take him down.

Caroline stared at him, momentarily reflecting on the few memories she'd shared with him. He'd offered her lifts to the news station where he'd worked as a local news reporter when she'd been doing her work experience, helped her dig out facts from the archives when she'd been doing a school project, and generally just been one of those faces you couldn't help but know. She wasn't sure how she felt about his death, and he'd given her next to no answers regarding the mystery over who'd turned him – which meant there was probably another vampire out there somewhere, hiding in the shadows like a coward – but he was gone, and the job – for the moment - was done.

She turned, noting her accomplices, one bearing a crossbow, the other a handgun loaded with vervain laced bullets, and gave a frustrated sigh, pushing her lips into a scowl as she appraised her companions with exasperation.

"Gee, you guys sure took your time stepping in! What took you so long?" she complained.

"Logan Fell was a wild card. We all grew up with him. It was just a matter of who got to him first in regards to who killed him. You were doing okay on your own."

Caroline stared critically at her friends, who she'd known her entire life, and gave an exaggerated sigh.

To sum her friends up in a nutshell, they were both maddeningly unhelpful at times, but solid players on the hunting field. You had one brunette with baby pink lips and olive skin to die for, whose only solid flaw seemed to be the fact she had no sense of self-preservation whatsoever, at least not while her friends' lives were at stake. She was a born again martyr from three centuries ago, and, while it was admirable to a degree, Caroline could count on both hands (and then some) the amount of times she'd had to stop Elena from sacrificing herself (because for some strange reason a lot of vampires fixated on Elena, and nobody could really figure out why) to save her friends by putting herself in the line of fire.

Bonnie Bennett really was no better on the self-preservation front. A petite, dark skinned, curly haired beauty - the youngest of the group, but by no means the weakest - she was undoubtedly the most intelligent of the bunch, always digging up fresh research about the vampires they hunted, always finding that there was something new to learn, a new method of attack they hadn't tried yet.

Caroline couldn't really put a label on herself, much as she tried. She just knew she was physically strong, capable of manipulation, capable of charming a vampire into thinking he was getting a free meal for the evening, and then would drive a stake into his heart before he had even seen the flirtatious look in her eyes change into something cold and ruthless. She liked to think she was pretty, with her vivid blonde hair and blue eyes, but she tended to overcompensate for what was already there, mostly by trying too damn hard with any guy she had the chance to date. Most ran the other way because she was, and this was a direct quote here, "too intense". Bonnie and Elena had frequently assured her one day she'd find a man who'd be able to keep up with her, but she had her doubts, and it wasn't like in their business dating was a pastime they could keep up with, yet still she pined for love because it was the only cliché about being a woman she could claim.

"Rebekah ran you ragged again huh?" she quizzed, noting the exhausted look in her friends' eyes.

"Training blows," Elena, the brunette, stated, pushing back her hair to reveal her glossy brow. "But Rebekah says physical fitness is what saves our lives."

"What makes her such an expert on such matters? She literally only joined our group six months ago."

"She saved our asses in New York, Care," Bonnie reminded her. "That nest of vampires outnumbered us and she took them all out single-handedly."

"Yeah, well, call me crazy, but that woman is something else," Caroline grumbled.

"You're only saying that because you don't know her," Bonnie pointed out. "She's actually pretty cool."

"But we are the Dynamic Trio," Caroline whined. "Somehow the Dynamic Quad doesn't sound nearly as good. We've done everything together since we were in diapers. She doesn't get to just come in and mess that up."

Bonnie smiled.

"Don't be bitter – it provokes wrinkles," she scolded lightly.

"You gotta admit though, Care, she does know her stuff when it comes to taking down a vampire," Elena added. "She's strong, knows all their weak spots, has a ridiculous assortment of weaponry I don't know how she acquired, and she throws a mean right hook." In explanation to the strange looks she got from Bonnie and Caroline, she added, "Kind of got on the wrong side of her when we first met. Called her a stuck up hunter wannabe, and then my face was on the end of her fist." She grinned. "My fault really..."

Caroline pulled a face.

"Any news on any vampires?" she asked, changing the subject abruptly. "I'm still feeling pumped from taking out Logan."

"Easy, Lara Croft," Bonnie teased. "Let's take the day to recuperate, and I'll go scout out what I can. Got a contact who never fails to dig up some vampires."

"Is this the guy who refuses to give you his name?"

"I made some progress in that department actually. I got a last name – Singer."

"Singer?" Caroline wrinkled her nose with distaste. "Sounds like you got fake named."

Bonnie shrugged, dropping the matter.

"Who's going to take care of Logan?" Elena asked, motioning towards the body.

"I'll do it," Caroline offered, despite the fact disposing of bodies was inherently the worst part of this whole business for her.

"Need any help?"

"Nah, should be okay."

"I'll start seeing if he turned anyone, although from the looks of things he'd probably only just turned himself. The clumsy trail of bodies he left indicates newborn vampire, and he wasn't exactly eager to volunteer answers as to who might've turned him, so that leads us back to square one," Bonnie informed them.

"I'll continue my training with Rebekah," Elena said, "seeing how I've been out of shape since that vampire in Toronto nearly gutted me." She lifted up her tank top, revealing a scar which ran down her stomach, still raw around the fringes, but otherwise a perfect example of where carelessness could get you. "Really wish we'd known then that vervain bullets could slow the bastards down."

"To be fair, though, we had just started out," Bonnie reasoned. "I mean, I got cocky a couple of times – nearly lost an ear because of it."

"And I nearly ruined a perfect manicure because some plaid wearing creep decided that picking on blondes was his new hobby," Caroline growled, bristling at the memory. "We've all suffered because we thought this would be easy. Stake a few vampires, rid the world of a few monsters... then go shopping and do it all again the next day. It's harder than we thought. The bastards are getting craftier."

The other two nodded, interrupted by the sound of heels as a stunning blonde woman entered the vicinity, the way she walked a good indicator of who she was as a person: confident, self-assured, with a little bit of an edge.

She was undoubtedly beautiful, with her hair currently tied up in a messy ponytail, her eyes a deep green you found yourself falling into, as if they were miniature oceans dragging you under time and time again. Her fashion, even Caroline admitted on a regular basis, was flawless, and right now she wore stylish skinny jeans, accompanied by a loose fitting white top, which rippled around the collar area, finished off with some dark leather boots which cut off just below her knees.

"It took you seven hours to find and track a newbie vampire?" she asked incredulously, raising a lone eyebrow. "Seriously? I could've tracked him, stake him, and mounted him on my wall within an hour."

"That's because you seem to possess supernatural skills that we don't," Caroline fired back, instantly irritated. "We've known Logan all our lives, so excuse us for wanting to make absolutely sure he was a vampire. Where's your compassion?"

"Compassion is the enemy of a hunter, Caroline," Rebekah retorted. "Even if it's your loved one, you have to abandon your emotions and do the right thing. The moment you become a vampire hunter, you're signing your compassion away, or do I need to spell it out for you?"

"Easy, Rebekah," Elena cautioned, always the middle woman when things between Rebekah and Caroline got too heated, which they did on numerous occasions given the fact they were both stubborn women with their own way of tackling situations. "You taught us to be absolutely sure before we attacked; that's what we were doing. All signs pointed to Logan, but we waited to see if he led us to his sire, or a nest of vampires. That's basic protocol."

Caroline flashed Elena a grateful look, but Rebekah still looked dubious.

"Uncertainty can end your lives," she drawled. "So while I admire the Nancy Drew-ness of it all, I do expect my training to have at least sharpened your minds – a pipe dream, at this point, but maybe my expectations of you were too high..."

"How very dare you, "Caroline began, instantly furious, but Bonnie dragged her away before they could engage in a full on catfight, leaving Elena and Rebekah alone.

Rebekah shook her head, evidently displeased with the day's events.

"You could go easier on us you know," Elena suggested, running a hand through her hair in frustration. "We've all lost people because of the vampires. Nobody wants to take them down more than we do. But they're getting smarter, you have to admit that!"

"That's because you're making yourselves widely known in the vampire community. You kill them in open places, where anybody could walk by and see. It's reckless. Vampires might be solitary for the most part, but it doesn't mean they don't talk. The word soon gets round. I wouldn't be surprised if you three have your own wanted posters in the vampire community at this point."

Elena glared at her.

"We're trying our best here, Rebekah. Give us some credit. Why do you insist on pushing us so damn hard?"

Rebekah pursed her lips, assessing her coldly before her mask dropped, revealing a weary woman in her early twenties who had seen everything the world had to offer – good and bad – and who'd begun to grow exhausted with life as a result.

"Because I know what it's like to lose someone to a supernatural creature of superior strength," she admitted. "My youngest brother was killed by a werewolf pack we once called neighbours. He never saw the attack coming. That's why I'm pushing you so damn hard: because I know what it's like to believe the best in people only for them to end up betraying you. If you shortlist the people you can trust, sifting out the people you know for sure with the potential to betray you, you have a better chance of surviving, take it from me."

Her nostrils flared as she ranted, her eyes flashing with fire one moment, the flames soon doused with an ice cold barrier nothing could penetrate, and it was then Elena realised Rebekah wasn't this cold on purpose; life had just moulded her into this distrustful, paranoid, vengeful woman intent on slaying anything demonic to secure some peace of mind for herself.

Elena could relate to that.

"How old was he?" she couldn't help but ask.

"About nine years old...maybe ten." Rebekah pinched the ridge of her nose, suddenly looking exhausted. "I forget because it feels like it happened a thousand years ago."

"You never talk about yourself," Elena noted. "You just kind of...swept into our lives."

Rebekah chuckled, but the sound was harsh, flat.

"I have good reason for keeping my distance. I know what it's like to trust and then be stabbed in the back," she said. "People earn my trust, I let them in, and then they're gone when the moment really counts. I've learned over the years to trust nobody but myself." She gave Elena a small smile. "It's easier that way."

"It might be easier, but it sounds lonely."

"I'd rather be lonely in the long run than ending up with a metaphorical dagger in my back once again because I let my heart rule my head. "One of my other brothers used to say that would be my downfall, my romantic heart."

"I thought we were talking about people in general... not men."

"Men... women..." Rebekah threw her hands up in the air. "Sexuality isn't black and white. It's a spectrum of colours which simply blend into one another. Truth is, I went to college... experimented a little, as one does..." she laughed, and this time it sounded genuine, free even, "...but it doesn't matter who I hand my heart out to, it always gets broken."

"If it helps, I know how you feel," Elena offered, wondering how she and Rebekah had suddenly become stuck with removing Logan's body.

"Your story can't be more tragic than mine – trust me."

"You want to see which of our lives is more tragic? Okay, boyfriend one – Matt; we were boyfriend and girlfriend in high school – cheerleader and jock – the perfect, most clichéd couple you can ever image. The unofficial story of how we broke up – the one we told everyone – was that we just wanted different things. I guess in a way that wasn't a lie. I caught him cheating, and he broke my heart. In fact, since then, every boyfriend I have ever had, and there have been a fair few – not quite in the double digits however – found a reason to look for love elsewhere, without telling me that's what we were doing."

Rebekah's permanent glare softened a fraction.

"And yet Caroline tells me you're still hoping to find Mr Right? How do you actively keep on looking for love, even after being betrayed all those times?"

"I choose to believe in the best of people...even if people make it hard for me to believe in the best of me sometimes," Elena confessed, shrugging her shoulders. "You think I'm crazy, don't you?"

"No..." Rebekah gave her a half smile. "You're exactly who I was the second to last time I fell in love – vaguely hopeful that the next time I fell in love, it would be the last." She cleared her throat, a cold mask frosting her features. "Anyway, enough with the sentiment... it's useless here." She gave Logan's body a swift kick. "Since Caroline – yet again – has left us to do all the work, we'll have to dispose of this creep before people show up." She gave Elena an impatient look. "Well? Stop gawking and lend a hand."

Elena shook her head, biting back an equally as impatient retort, wondering if it was too late to take back the compliments she'd given Rebekah earlier in favour of some much more realistic truths that captured Rebekah's character far more truthfully.


It was three weeks until her seventeenth birthday, so not exactly a milestone but regardless Elena was looking forward to it. Caroline was throwing her the be-all-end-all parties, insisting each party had to top the last, and that was, apparently, her one and only rule regarding celebrations.

Of course, Matt had been violently scribbled off the list, and there had been constant amendments to the invite list due to Caroline's tendencies to fall out with a different person every other day it seemed, but Elena was excited by the prospect of getting to celebrate with her friends. She was a party animal, she had to admit it, and didn't so much enjoy the social aspect of it so much as the dancing, the mindless gyrating against boys, giving teasing snippets of what she could give them before moving on to the next, the night always ending with her, Bonnie and Caroline giggling madly on the floor, usually a little bit drunk if it was a house party. Public events usually had them in a booth somewhere, exchanging notes on their guests, recapping the night with wide smiles and loud laughs.

Right now, she was enjoying a going-back-to-school party, as everyone caught up with the latest scandals and heartbreaks Mystic Falls had to offer, and Caroline was chatting with Tyler, some undeniable sparks passing between them despite their less than amicable relationship due to the fact he – quite rightly – had Matt's back in regards to his and Elena's break up. She wasn't going to blame him for sticking up for his friend, especially when she'd heard down the grapevine he'd actually berated him for it before letting the matter drop.

"Elena," came a familiar voice, and she closed her eyes, wondering whether actually thinking about him had actually caused him to be conjured up before her.

"Go away, Matt," she implored, before attempting to walk away.

He effortlessly blocked her, his eyes pleading her to listen, and she stood there, both angry and heartbroken, wondering how the atypical good guy could do the atypical guy thing and believe he could have his cake and eat it too, and actually believe he could get away with it.

"I just need to say I'm sorry," he said sincerely. "I was an ass..."

" were."

"And I broke your heart."

"Yes, you did."

Matt closed his eyes painfully. "I screwed up."

"Gee, you think?" she snapped, before reigning in the worst of her temper as she appraised him coldly. "Look, Matt, apologies when it comes to matters of the heart only get you so far. You can say you're sorry a thousand times, and mean it every single time, but it doesn't matter. You can't un-cheat. You can't buy back my trust with a single word. It's gonna take time."

"Time? How much time?"

She shrugged. "It'll take as long as it takes. But maybe we were wrong for each other. You had the future mapped out for us – a future you obviously weren't thinking about when you had your tongue shoved down Aimee Bradley's throat – and I - I don't want my future mapped out for me. I want to live my life and figure out all that kind of stuff along the way."

Matt opened his mouth, but she was done listening. Any terminated relationship – romantic or otherwise – had a bank of so many minutes you could tolerate the other person before you had to cut yourself off, and this was her moment.

She made a half hearted excuse that she had to head home for family night (which wasn't strictly a lie, she just was technically missing out on it to come to this party), and yet, tempted to go home and just wallow, Elena called her mom, asking her to come and fetch her.

While she waited, she felt like a pair of eyes happened to be watching her, but she shook off that feeling, hovering by the side of a lonely road a few minutes away from where the party happened to be.

Her whole world stopped at the sound of piercing screams, and before she knew it she'd barrelled forwards, pushing herself into a run, freezing at the sight before her, recognising her parents' car, which had collided with a tree, but that wasn't what had her entire body shaking with fear.

Both her parents were strewn on the ground, her dad unconscious, but she couldn't see the rise and fall of his chest to indicate he was breathing, half of his neck savaged by what appeared to be bite marks. Her mom was attempting to fight off a dark haired individual, who had plunged his teeth into her neck and appeared to be draining her.

Before she could stop it, a horrifying shriek escaped Elena's lips, which naturally caught the attention of her mom's attacker, who paused, dropping his prey to the ground, his mouth covered with blood, grinning broadly as he advanced towards her.

It was like a horror movie, except there was no control to turn off the television when things became too scary to deal with. Elena couldn't physically move; terror rooted her to the ground, but even through the paralysing fear, her brain managed to coax a little movement out of her as she took a step back. The beast before her – there was no other word to describe him, because monster seemed too vague a word – snarled, the motion revealing a set of bloodstained teeth, and then suddenly froze, taking in her appearance with almost a confused air. It was in that moment that Elena almost saw a civil air to this beast, this unnameable fear (if she gave it a name, her mind theorised, it only became real, even though she was pretty sure she knew what he was anyway), and then that moment disappeared as he blurred towards her, grabbed her head and locked his eyes on hers.

The rest, as they say, was history, and yet ironically Elena would never forget the first time she was compelled.

The memory was eventually forced back into her head, during an incident which fuelled her anger towards vampires, and awoke the burning desire to slay them all, but up until that point she, like the rest of the world, believed her parents' deaths to have been the result of a tragic car accident.

When she eventually found out, Elena couldn't work out which was the worst fate to have gone through: believing a lie for so many years, or knowing the truth and being (at the time) powerless to do anything about it. The truth, no matter how horrific it might be, is always easier to deal with than a lie; a lie might placate, soothe and/or comfort, but in the end it's the equivalent of burying something in the earth; sooner or later, it's bound to surface in some shape or form.

The way Elena found out the truth was nothing short of horrific, but in the end it taught her one thing: she was strong, and life could throw every obstacle, every hurt her way, and she could still cope.

But that night still damaged her, regardless of what she did or did not remember, and she remembered it as such as the night that everything changed.


"Keep 'em coming," Elena ordered the bartender, in reference to the vodka shots she was currently necking back fast and furiously.

"So this is how you wind down after a hard day's work," Rebekah drawled, sliding into the stool next to her. "Interesting, although rather clichéd for my liking."

"It's just something I do, okay?" Elena said churlishly. "It's a ritual at this point."


Elena scrutinised her, then shook her head.

"You're not ready."

"Ready for what?"

"When we know each other a little better, remind me of this conversation – because I certainly won't remember – and then I'll tell you."

Rebekah rolled her eyes, something Elena didn't miss, even as her sobriety gradually started to disappear, shot by shot.

After a shower, followed by a subsequent bath – another ritual Elena kept to herself, with another equally good story behind it – she'd changed into a dark, tight fitting shirt, matched with jeans which had seen better days, and ankle boots. It wasn't exactly a going-out outfit, but she felt comfortable in it, and it helped shed the hunter identity for the night, so she could pass off as a reasonably normal individual pursuing normal activities.

Activities which, unfortunately, included eye stalking her ex-boyfriend, who happened to work in the Grill, and happened to look surprisingly good with a towel slung haphazardly across his shoulder.

"Which boyfriend do you happen to be eye stalking right now?" Rebekah asked intuitively.

"Number one," Elena grumbled, holding up one finger as if Rebekah needed a visual representation of the number. "Matt Donovan – everyone's golden boy."

"Does he know you come here and check him out, not too subtly I might add?"

Elena shook her head fervently.

"Even though we broke up under horrible circumstances, we sort of parted ways amicably... which makes no sense, I know, but I don't do drama, or confrontation. I don't like the idea that someone out there might have a reason to dislike, hate or otherwise feel negatively about me."

"Well, that's stupid. You can't control what people think of you, Elena."

Elena gave her a cross look.

"I know that. But then again I can control the way I act around people." She gulped down another vodka shot, the slur in her voice become more and more pronounced as the evening went on. "Caroline doesn't trust you, you know."

"She's made that perfectly clear," Rebekah replied wryly. "The girl can't show an ounce of tact or subtlety, which is fine. I'm used to being the girl nobody trusts."

"I trust you," Elena announced, resting her hand comfortably on top of Rebekah's, aware the action sent a series of unexplainable tingles running up and down her arm, producing goosebumps as a results.

"The fact I've earned the trust of a semi-alcoholic suddenly makes my life worthwhile," Rebekah sniped, but a genuine smile, tinged with humour, couldn't help but make its way to the surface.

"Alcohol is so gooood," Elena declared giddily, and it was at that point Rebekah decided to intervene.

"Okay, Drunkie Drunkerson – we're taking you home," she announced, looping an arm around her, "I'm cutting you off."

"Why?" Elena whined, but she made no physical gesture of protestation, merely allowing Rebekah to lead her out of the bar.

"Because alcohol leads you into making stupid decisions, and lest you forget, we have early morning training tomorrow."

"How early is early?"

"Six a.m. sharp," Rebekah said, eyeing her warily. "Although I suspect we might have to push that up to eight, given the fact you're going to wake up with a bitching headache, and a temper which somehow manages to make me seem like the most patient and understanding person in the world."

Elena made a noncommittal sound, merely staggering along, even in her flat ankle boots, as she clung to Rebekah like a lifeline, which amused the latter to no end, given the fact that this encounter, though far from what she'd hoped for, was the embodiment of someone trusting her. It felt good, though she kept herself from keeping too involved with Elena and her little gang, given the fact she liked to move from place to place, never sticking around long enough to call a place home. It was sad, but that was her truth.

"Bet ya wondering why I get hammered so often, right?" Elena slurred, still able to form complete sentences, even if they were fragmented by the odd hiccup.

"Everyone who turns to alcohol for their solution might claim to have different reasons for doing so, but there's always one common underlying reason why they do – to forget. Everyone always has something they want to forget when they drink, whether it's stress, heartache, or a rough day at work – sometimes all three," Rebekah replied curtly. "You're past the point of sober return right now, Elena, so don't try and make me your designated driver every time you want to forget the horrors you've faced that particular day. I don't do friends, and I don't do chauffeuring, okay?"

Elena gave her what she supposed to be a glare, but it looked like she was squinting instead, which ruined the effect she was going for.

"You don't know anything about me," she said snippily, hiccupping loudly. "I don't drink to getfor – f-forget..." she paused, "...whatever. S'hard word to say."

Rebekah gave her an icy stare.

"We're not close, Elena, but don't ever lie to me. You don't want to tell me what it is you're trying to forget, fine, but don't try and make out you're different than everyone else who clings to a bar stool and orders shot after shot. You're trying to erase something – hurt, pain, grief, whatever – so don't try and treat me like I don't get it."

But her words were lost on Elena, whose eyes glazed over, and as Rebekah steered her towards her car, she began to wonder what she'd gotten herself into with this rag tag bunch of girls, whose motivations for doing what they did were a mystery. She knew something had to have happened in each of these girls' lives which had motivated them into becoming hunters, a loss of some kind, but they weren't sharing, and she wasn't asking. You didn't get too personal with these hunters; you often found they tended to have a lot of baggage, a lot of drama, and Rebekah wasn't here for that.

All the same, she couldn't help but muse on Elena, who was an enigma as well as being very easy on the eyes. Just what was it that had her reaching for a bottle of liquor after every hunt – she'd noticed the pattern, hence the solo intervention, although she'd not really done any intervening – always reaching the point of complete and utter intoxication before ending up in her car, sleeping the alcohol off in the back seat? What was it about this girl that had her instantly intrigued, when up until this point she'd made a point to remain firmly detached from the clique Elena and her friends had formed since childhood, in an effort to remain drama-free?

Rebekah had typically been drawn to men, and not just ordinary men: men who tended to thirst for power, or who had been particularly charismatic, and the women she'd loved and lost had tended to be both outspoken and, frankly, overemotional. She couldn't cope with the extremes both genders presented, and Elena was kind of a weird combination of both – charismatic, with the tendency to appear vulnerable, and she found that oddly appealing.

She shook her head, dismissing these thoughts before they had time to root themselves into her subconscious.

Don't let yourself fall again, her heart cautioned. You won't always be able to pick yourself up.

Baby steps, her head, remarkably, agreed. Just be cautious. It won't kill you to just be careful.

Rebekah glanced at Elena, who slumped in the passenger seat, who was attempting to hide tears she must've been hoping her companion couldn't see.

Out of courtesy, she looked away, suddenly feeling uncomfortable.

I really can't become this girl's confidante, she thought. Nothing good could come from being her friend.

And with this thought, she started the car up, and decided to drop off Elena and then to backpedal to the bar so she could drown these strange thoughts in alcohol.