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Shadows that prey in the past

Chapter Text

 

-In hindsight, you could’ve been nicer to people. Or at least left fewer survivors- 

 

Kol gasps, blood starting to flow back into his limbs as the dagger is removed, the too familiar feeling of it all is unmistakable. Elijah stands over him with hair falling down from his forehead with a style he hasn't worn in years -- and when did Kol start counting his days in years and not centuries, had seven years with Davina really been enough to shift his whole world view into the narrow lifetime of a human's? Had that way she takes on each new day like it would be her last, really rubbed on him?

Or maybe his death was what reminded him of the fragility of time-- how quickly it passes, like the blink of an eye. The shortness of it feels nice, like every day is important. Sure he feels more impatient than usual like every pause is a wasted moment, but the important moments stretches on and imprints on his mind like something truly precious.

(Like the first time he'd tried making breakfast for Davina, it had been a horrendous attempt with burnt bacon and overcooked eggs-- somehow the toast was fine if not with a few holes where he'd put a bit too much pressure on the fragile bread. The food hadn't quite looked like the guide he'd found on the internet suggested it should look like, but he hadn't known that then and Davina had been overjoyed like he'd just offered her the moon and carefully eaten most of the bread. Acting like she'd forgotten the eggs and bacon, like the bread was the best thing she'd ever had. He hadn't questioned it, hadn't tasted food since the thirteenth century and maybe the machine created bread was just really good. Later when she'd gone off to work he'd taken a bite of the eggs and promptly spit it out. But despite knowing how she must have suffered from the eggs and bacon, her face as he'd presented his first attempt at breakfast is still one of his most cherished memories of her)

He's been desecrated a long time, it's taking too long to come back to himself, at least seventy years. Kol hadn't even felt the dagger going into his chest--and it usually hurts so much, the last thing he remembers is--

He doesn't remember, they'd all been eating together, their whole family at Nik’s funeral party, they'd been sharing stories, laughing and having fun to give Klaus the good send off he deserves, and to give Hope a good memory of her whole family together. He'd been sitting besides her, as she’d gone increasingly silent-- and then nothing.

It doesn't make sense.

With the Hollow whispering in his ear, did Klaus decide to take revenge for past times Davina and Kol had raised their hands back against him?

Seventy years . At the minimum His mind screams-- what did he do that Klaus would snap and punish him to miss so many years-- fifty years if he stretches the time frame. Davina can be dead, long buried in the ground with no ancestral plane to allow for a resurrection.

Kol whimpers, his vision blurring with tears. He hasn't felt like this since the ancestors had used him to kill her. Like someone is slowly pulling out his heart.

Like when he'd burned for a cause leading to the end of the world.

Or the one time he'd been in the middle of an explosion and had regenerated from surviving brain matter that has been thrown at a darkened, ashen wall. He'd been coughing up ash for two years. But even telling that story to Davina and laughing with her at the sheer ridiculousness of that situation, had never caused a reaction like the times he remembered her death. Because nothing in his long life had been worse.

And now she's potentially gone again.

Knowing Klaus’s diabolical way of vengeance which would only be expanded by the Hollow, he wouldn't allow Kol out until Davina was thoroughly consumed by the earth.

There's a hand on his shoulder, putting a comforting pressure on him as Elijah continues to stare down at him, his expression shifting to something more bewildered. “Calm yourself brother.” he says with wide eyes, he must have just been allowed to let him out. Of course, Klaus wouldn't be there, if he had Kol would've ripped his head off and put it on a pike so he'd regenerate slower.

“Where is she!?” Kol hisses, way past being calm, that ended when Klaus daggered him for over fifty years. “Tell me or I'll--”

Elijah interrupts, pressing down on him when Kol attempts to sit. He doesn't have the strength left to fight the hand on him, he feels weak and drained. “be calm, the witch friend you were colluding with disappeared after we daggered you. I'm certain she lived a happy life.”

-What !?

Before he can voice to scream ‘she wasn't just a friend and you know that you insufferable prick’ Finn of all the dead people to turn up-- leans over to stare at Kol in the casket. “What does Kol care about some poor witch he's used for his usual schemes?“ apathy is clear on his face, but then, Finn always hated Kol the most.

-He wants to scream and rip their throats out.

“The bloody hell is going on with you Kol? Did you finally lose your marbles?” Rebekah says with her usual tact as she comes into view besides Elijah and Finn to peer down at him, too calm and confused for something not to be wrong. She'd always been the one to support his and Davina’s marriage the most. Their normal lives, being something she herself desires most in the world, her quips and nagging about him being a trophy wife and housewife aside, she'd never just stare at him if Davina was dead, she'd tell him her fate. Whether she's alive or not.

He freezes beneath Elijah's hand and takes in his siblings. Rebekah dressed in a familiar hot red dress and Elijah--well-- Elijah is in a suit as always. But Finn sticks out between them, draped in old clothes with the long hair that suited him so ill. They're all wearing what they'd worn when Elijah and the baby Salvatore vampire had first undaggered him in the twenty first century-

He looks down at himself, dressed in the familiar black vest and grey shirt.

What.

He relaxes under his brother's hand and feels exhaustion crawling in on him, he can deal with his emotions later. As he always does, free from family and judging eyes. (usually accompanied by a murder spree but Davina would frown at the unnecessary death)

The hand lifts of his chest, following, ready to push him down again if he gets agitated as Kol sits up and quickly uses his shirt to wipe off the tears from his face. “What's going on? Is Nik too afraid to un-dagger me himself?“ he echoes something he's sure is similar enough to what he'd said last time to not arouse too many suspicions, not that the breakdown he's carefully shoved back and into a torn covered box haven't already roused his siblings' confusion.

Kol’s never reacted like that after a daggering, and they've always been expected to leave old grudges be bygones. (even if it had only been a few minutes for them)

Elijah watches him for a moment before withdrawing his hand with a flourish, he begins explaining to the two of them-- Rebekah having only been daggered recently-- about how their mother's true murderer having been Klaus and not their father, then his plans for them to leave Nikalus alone forever.

A plan that's going to be ruined the moment their horrid mother will step into the room and they'll all melt and fall for her lies as they always did so easily.

Elijah doesn't introduce the Salvatore brother, it's the one with the pretty blue eyes, Damien Kol thinks, but the young vampire is watching them, his blue eyes darting over Kol’s no doubt red eyes (and it's not even because he’s showing his vampire face! Davina would snicker) more than they linger on any other sibling of his. He can practically see Damien wondering what would make an original cry and whimper , wondering if it's something his little gang can use it against them. (the thought of Elena, Jeremy Gilbert, and their friends leaves a bad taste in his mouth and a familiar anger at them he and Davina had never been able to shake)

Seems like Kol has ruined his fearsome reputation not even a minute into the past.

Kol follows Elijah and Damien as they leave to ambush Klaus, “See I've learned not to trust your vulgar promises Klaus. We're doing this on my terms now.” Elijah replies to something he couldn't be bothered to listen to and Kol walks in, Rebekah already moving to the other entry to cut their brother off.

Nik looks surprised at seeing him, spreading his arms to diffuse tension and appear unthreatening. “Kol.”

What did he say the last time? Hello? Been a while? “It's been a long time Nik.” That's… most likely not it, it doesn't quite feel right.

Finn speeds into the room before Rebekah can even help corner Klaus and stabs him with one of the daggers. It goes pretty quickly after that, Rebekah comes in like a guardian bulldog when their brother attempts to flee, stabbing him in the gut with a quick “This is for our mother.”

Klaus stumbles back into Finns waiting arms, he holds him tightly, trapping him as Elijah pleasantly announces for the Salvatore brothers to leave. Once the baby vampires are gone Finn shoves Klaus at the dining table, Nik leans against it, crowded in by his siblings. Kol stays back, wandering over to a servant and quickly ordering her away in case a fight breaks out. He can't remember if they'd fought last time.

They're speaking, but Kol couldn't care less, watching a knot in the wooden paneling as he thinks, the words I'm in the bloody past , screeching in his head. The image of his mother walking past her stunned children flashes in his mind, soon she'll walk in and forgive Klaus. Just so she can kill them all.

I'm in the bloody past!

“-ion Kol?”

At the mention of his name Kol snaps his gaze to his siblings who's moved to the doorway, leaving him with Klaus between him and them. Klaus is staring at him with wide angry yet hopeful eyes as the rest looks on disproving. He'd followed them last time, hadn't he? “What?”

“I said,” Klaus says with a dangerous edge to his tone, “I've noticed you haven't followed them little brother, are you really going along with this foolish endeavor Kol?“

“Oh- Uh,” Kol says stumbling on his words as he rightens himself up to creep past Klaus. “Sure, why not.” the look Rebekah sends him is downright poisonous as Klaus’s face edges into blind fury-- threats spilling off his tongue like a dogs saliva on a hot day.

Hah, dog.

Then mother strides in, all confidence and lies as she makes his siblings bow to her will with a few well-placed words. In hindsight they do seem pathetically easy for her to wrap around her fingers, ready to scramble out and comply with any order. They're real mommy's boys and girl. Mother’s eyes wander over him briefly but seem content with conferring with her other children as he ignores most of the room.

“Kol, a drink?” Rebekah says, suddenly before him with a glass filled with fresh blood.

He takes it and peers into the liquid, “What's the date.” he asks, whirling for an excuse to leave and never come back. The human progress he knows to have found place will have to do.

“It's 2010.”

“Ah the new millennium, tell me sister, has humankind been up to anything exciting since Nik boxed me up?”

A smile slides onto her face, always so eager about humans his sister. So she talks, describing phones, planes, televisions, computers, the moon landing , and the internet.

“You're telling me the humans made a digital system for sharing information?” he lets the fascination he'd first felt when he'd first learned of the technological advancements (a day later last time) colour his voice. “How do I get one of these cell phones ? Do all humans carry them?” she nods and he clasps her shoulders and quickly reminds himself that in these days he'd still been furious about her betrayal. “Now then sister, I'll go find one of these items and you can go suck up to Nik like always.”

Hurt flashes in her eyes and Kol leaves before he can blurt out something nice at her.

He grabs the first human he finds, a maybe thirty-year-old man and stares into his eyes, “Relax mate, do you have a phone? Good-- does it have a password? Remove it,” as the man quickly removes his phones protection Kol takes the chance to look around, Mystic Falls, how he hates this place. [bad memories, nightmares, and death] ”Give me your phone and forget about me, you accidentally crushed it and won't wonder where it went.” With the phone in hand Kol quickly turns the corner and looks it over, it's pretty new for 2010-- he does a quick factory reset, easier than deleting all the man's files one after another.

The phone takes longer to reset than he's used to, so he lies down on one of the benches in the town square and stares up at the stars. Seventeen years, that's how far back he's gone-- or was it a vision of the future? In all his years of teaching and learning from witches he'd never heard of successful time travel, sure some would try now and then, but they'd never succeed, their magic would backlash and few lived to tell the tale.

But seeing into the future was common enough he'd met witches who solely practiced their skills of clairvoyance-- some of them had been the ones to originally tell him about Silas and the destruction he'd bring. But those magics always came with a cost, from limb paralyzation to lethal illnesses, and no witch would risk that for Kol of all people. Davina maybe, but she doesn't even know him. She'd know of him by 2010, just not know him.

The thought burns in his throat-- Davina doesn't know him.

He should go see her, just to make sure she's alright even though he knows she is, even as she's living with the mother she's got few pleasant memories off in the future. Tomorrow he'll compel himself to a car, tonight he'll break into the hospital and nick some blood bags for himself so he doesn't accidentally kill someone in his hunger.

The hunger is easier to control when he's not actively eating.

He'll burn the Wickery bridge on his way out of town as well so no one can kill him or his siblings again.

The phone vibrates at his side and he picks it up, the man's sim card booting up nicely and allowing the top bar to showcase its connection. Snapping a quick picture of the night sky he puts it in on the background when the generic odd-looking blue thing that was there before becomes an eyesore. His eyes dart around for something interesting to take pictures of-- he'd never really been an avid photographer, not after the initial rush of wonder at being able to record and snap multiple pictures by the second had worn off-- but Davina had liked it (having multiple folders with hundreds of pictures on her phone, of him, of food, of plants, cities, animals--everything--snapping them and posting them on the internet on something she'd called Insta and Chipper) so why not, he's bored and avoiding his family anyway.

(His own phone had the rare new picture and many old ones he'd taken before becoming disinterested, mostly of an annoyed Rebekah-- her annoyance at him snapping closeups of her only energizing him-- then of people he'd killed [That he'd, of course, deleted in case someone with crabby hands went through his gallery] and some other random things, few of his siblings, and then two of his mother he'd sneaked when she wasn't looking. He'd mostly used it for communication, music, and the twenty mobile games he'd downloaded)

He's taking pictures of an orange cat when his mother's voice comes behind him. “Kol?”

The hiss of surprise that escapes him is quick and low, startling the cat before him. It runs off into a flower bed, and Kol lowers his phone dejectedly and turns to his mother, rising from his crouch. She's changed into something modern, some of Rebekah’s clothes if he remembers correctly. “Now look at what you did.” he looks away from her to flip through the pictures he'd taken, a few were actually decent, the rest blurry and dark. He sets to delete the bad ones and walks off, face in his phone.

“Kol!” Mother exclaims and rushes over, “you left in such a hurry, are you cross with me my son?” the look on her face is so caring, her words so hopeful (like she's not planning his murder) that his old rage at her sparks, flaring up before he can tamper them.

“Yes! I am cross with you! I have been cross with you for a thousand years! Since you turned us all into this !” he stops, his free hand freezing where it's gesturing wildly to himself, realizing the unintentional truth to his words, something he hadn't planned to tell her, something he never wanted to admit to her. How he hated being a vampire, the heightened emotions, the bloodlust, the lack of magic, how he could still feel that part of him that was a witch scream with every second of his existence . The phone drops from his hands the moment he stops walking--the small wheeze it releases as his fingers curl, making him drop it like it is on fire, safer in the short grass than his agitated palms.

Mother doesn't say anything, her eyes wide as they run over him like she's seeing him in a new light. Maybe she is , he thinks ruefully, knowing she'd followed them for their thousand years-- she'd only remember what he'd wanted to be.

Someone who didn't care. Who didn't miss something integral to who they are. Who loved what they were.

She stands silent and he scoops the phone up, checking it for damage and pocketing it-- Just in case Esther planned on enraging him yet again. “What!” he finally snaps after a beat too long for his patience.

“I didn't realise…” she says slowly, too slowly, his patience with her already thin enough as it is.

“What!?” he practically snarls, he can feel his teeth dropping but he's beyond caring-- everything he knows is gone. Again. “That Finn wasn't the only one who hates what you made us into!?”

“I apologise Kol,” Mother says, her hands pulling towards him with a look of pity and love, it's a familiar face, the one she'd give him after every time she'd let Mikael pull him away from his magic for painful training sessions. (It's the one she'd wear every time she'd let Mikael beat at any of his siblings for not being enough. They'd all tried to live up to the unknown standard, of course, all unaware of the impossibly of that goal. Now he knows they never had a chance, it was never them or their ‘weaknesses’ but their fathers fury at none of them being his beloved Freya.) He'd learned not to trust that face years before becoming a vampire. “Your father and I only wanted for you all to be safe, cursed you to ease our own fears.”

“Well that's bloody brilliant,” he says and shifts his eyes from where they're drawn to her neck and onto the Mystic Grill sprouting with humans. He could just kill her, but that would enrage his siblings so it would have to wait until her betrayal. “What did you want?” he asks, shoving her hands away from him.

“I want us to be a family.”

“And I want to leave. You want your darling family back, but is that really all?” he hadn't questioned her before, he hadn't cared as she was never someone he'd trusted, someone whose opinions he cares for, (A lie, he'd always sought his family's approval)

“Yes,” she says and doesn't try to approach him again, thankfully, following him as he heads through the streets of Mystic Falls. “Please stay with us and give our family a chance Kol, I'm planning a ball and I would love for you all to be there. If you will not stay for me, then for yourself, we all need family.”

Kol snorts, “Really mother? I'm a thousand years old, don't you think that's a tad bit too old to be clutching at my mother's skirts like I was still five?”

Mother frowns, a quick look of annoyance flashing through her eyes. “That's not how the curse works Kol, you know that, you're still just a child under all those years, still my lovely boy. Besides, I've heard it's quite common for children of eighteen winters to stay with their family in this century. At least stay with us for a few days Kol, see if you want to stay”

“I'm pretty sure I was actually nineteen winters Mother,” He deflects and looks her over, the look on her face tells him that she will not give up. As much as he dislikes his siblings, he doesn't really want to leave them at his mother's mercy, and there's no knowing if his mother will be successful in killing them if he leaves. Davina-- Davina will have to wait-- Davina has the luxury of wait, he knows she'll be fine, his siblings not so much, “I'll stay at the house for a few days, but then I'm gone.” he concedes. Just long enough for you to betray them.

Esther brightens visibly, a pleased smile crossing her face, “I'm planning for the ball to be on Saturday, please stay that long at least.” she says and holds out her hand, expecting him to take it as he'd always done as a child. His hand lands in hers automatically before he rips it out like he'd been burned.

“Until after the dance.” He agrees and sets for the mansion, taking large strides mother struggle to keep up with in the clothes Rebekah had given her. He's hungry and the man with a bloody bruise across the street is smelling a bit too appetising, he'd likely not be able to stop before the man died if he first began eating him, but he remembers that Klaus had some blood bags laying around back at the mansion when they first woke, so he won't have to raid the hospital.

He used to be so good at controlling his emotions down into a small ball to be thrown out into the thrash, had found it so easy to be chaotic and nihilistic. It had been fun to just let the predator brain lead, now he's plagued with niceties . Had fifteen years really been enough to make him change so much? Where he once had no control over his bloodlust, preferring it to carry his life, killing everything that bleeds just the slightest and pickled his hunger, Kol now walks hungry as a bleeding man walks a good five meters away, all without ripping his throat out. Where he once had control of his emotions, able to pretend not to care for anything. Now he's had to flee from Rebekah because of his bloody emotions flaring at the hurt that crossed her face when he made a jab at her betrayal.

His fangs drop as the man walks past, if his stomach could growl, it would.

If any of his siblings has drunk all the blood, heads will roll.

 

-All my life, all I ever wanted was for you lot to care about me-

 

“So our wayward brother returns,” Klaus says as Kol follows Esther into the mansion, she sits down in one of the couches and watches her children. Said children are sitting around with cups of blood, looking remarkably less grey, especially Finn who looks to be drowning his seventh blood bag if the empty plastic bags are anything to go by. Five full ones sit off to the side and the waiter he'd sent away lies unconscious up a wall, delicately put with some blood smeared over her mouth. Elijah or Finn must have kept the girl alive. “Tell me, did you have a good hunt?” Klaus says cocky as he leans forward.

Kol rolls his eyes, going for the bags and picking one up, turning it in his hands and studying it.

“The humans store their own blood now,” Rebekah says and leaps to her feet, striding over to ‘help’ him figure out the blood bags. She takes one and pops the lid off and pours some in her glass. “Though I reckon you won't be interested in this blood, after all it's not directly from the vein and you've always despised that. Then again I suspect you've already eaten.” she says doubtfully, if he hadn't been him she would've been right. The blood bag in his hands are the wrong temperature, half a minute at the shortest in a Microwave would do the trick. Blood tastes different depending on temperature and blood type, Davina and he had discovered that his favorite is hot AB positive blood with a hint of syrup. (quite a lot of syrup)

Really Bekah? I say a few words against you and you're already trying to sabotage me against mothers family plans. he thinks staring at her as he rips the lid off and let's the cold blood run down his throat, clenching some of his hunger. He grabs another and mechanically repeats the process twice, leaving the last bag on the table alone and stealing Rebekah’s.

“Hey!” she protests, grabbing for the bag. He swirls around, turning his back on her and Rebekah jumps to her feet and tackles him. Kol stumbles but stays upright and gives a last desperate draw of blood before Rebekah rips the almost empty bag from his fingers. “It's almost empty now!”

As she despairs with her bag, slowly emptying it into her glass, Kol goes over and takes the last bag and throws it at Finn, he catches it instinctively and frowns up at Kol. “You're looking a bit grey around the edges brother.” he mocks with a small smirk. (Finn brings only complicated emotions, he should avoid him)

Turning from Finn he focuses on Klaus and flops down into a sofa, spreading out like pancake dough, “Now then brother do you have more of these blood bags? I'm famished.” Being desecrated always did make him hungrier than usual and there's dried human blood on the waiter. If he killed her for the little blood she has left Davina would frown and tell him to at least go for the people who have all their blood.

Blood runs by his face, his head snaps to the side, fangs dropping, but before he can eat it, Rebekah withdraws the glass with a smirk. “Why you look hungry brother.” she teases and downs her glass in one go.

Watching her for a second, Kol sighs deeply with regret for going back with his mother and closes his eyes as he leans his head back, letting it rest on the sofa. And his siblings say he's the mischievous one.

“Rebekah, stop teasing your brother. Niklaus, do you have more for Kol to eat?” Mothers voice carries and Rebekah snorts as Klaus answers.

“I'm afraid not mother, see I didn't know we'd be having a family reunion, but I'm sure Kol is plenty able to hunt his own food.”

Kol rolls his eyes and turns out his family, relaxing into the sofa, feeling like he's slowly being engulfed by it. He'd forgotten how pleasant the sofas Klaus had felt.

Sleep takes him instantly, his steadily increasing exhaustion catching up to him.

 

Chapter Text

 

-Kol listen to me. You don't have long-



Rebekah stands as the car backs into her, speeding away when it hits her and watches Elena's confusion as she stumbles out the car. It's easy to push the bitch against the car, the fear and blood creating an intoxicating mix as her real face draws into her eyes, her fangs dropping as her dark eyes peers over Elena's terrified face.

Elena squeals pleasantly.

Then Elijah comes, with his pathetic admiration for Elena and his threats.

She runs home in anger and disgust, careful not to make a sound as she sneaks back inside. She doesn't want to endure Klaus’ anger quite yet, or mother's disappointment. She closes the door behind her and freezes, over at the doorway to her right, Kol sits, leaning against the open door frame with two empty blood bags by his hip. He murmurs, twitching somewhat. Asleep.

Rebekah breathes a sigh of relief. Kol would no doubt tell on her, still irritated at her for her betrayal if the way he acted last evening was an indicator. He hadn't been quite as vicious as she'd expected, but there was clearly something wrong with her brother if his tears upon awakening had been any indication, or maybe it was mother's presence that made him refrain himself. Kol always did act like a lost duckling with mother, following her around as she went about her day, only leaving for pranks, magic, their controlling father.

Creeping up the stairs she freezes and bends down, hiding behind the railing when Kol launches from his position with a scream, grabbing out for something. He slumps, a ragged breath coming out his lips as he runs a hand through his hair. His heart is beating wildly, the sound deafening in Rebekah’s ears as he pulls out a phone, he must have compelled of some poor sod, and turns it on, showing the lock screen that has a picture of a cat under the text detailing the date and time. “It's okay,” he whispers and puts the phone away, closing his eyes again. “You're fine.” he whispers one last time.

Rebekah stays still, not making a single movement until Kol’s breath evens out and he begins twitching with a nightmare again , then she leaves careful on each step as she stares down at her brother in pity.

Something is definitely wrong with him-- Kol who relishes in chaos and murder doesn't have nightmares , and certainly not two in a row.

As she lies in bed, Rebekah decides that it isn't her problem, Kol can take care of himself like he's always had. (and if her stomach clenched painfully in worry as she watched him in the doorway, well-)

 

-I am hoping you will help your baby sister out-

 

Her brother shoves a handful of popcorn into his mouth and takes a long sip of (oddly sweet smelling) blood from a blood bag as he watches a blonde geeky girl sprout some nonsensical lawyer talk to retrieve a dog. Kol laughs and popcorn flies out onto the sofa as his shoulders shake.

“What the bloody hell are you doing!?” Rebekah snaps, increasingly annoyed at the voice coming from the screen.

Kol looks over at her, he's dressed in Klaus’s too big clothes, they look ridiculous on him. “I'm watching… Legal blondes , I think it was called. A truly amusing play, the humans keeps being offensively dumb, but the girl is quite good at this lawyering.”

“And you like it?” She asks dubiously, the image before her is too bizarre for her.

“Sure.” Kol says, stuffing more popcorn into his throat before sipping at his blood as he watches a chick flick.

“Klaus!” she shouts desperately, running out the living room, immediately regretting it as she watches the stairs and Klaus comes speeding out, (he'll be angry that she tried to kill his Doppelganger) catching himself on the rails before he accidentally goes off the sides.

“What is it!?” Klaus asks, eyes wild as he watches her, not with anger but concern. Elijah and Elena hasn't snitched on her attempt on the traitorous humans life yet.

Rebekah points in the direction of Kol, fleeing the fear at the anger Klaus will hold away. “Kol likes chick flicks! ” she screeches, uncaring for the enhanced hearing of the vampires living with them. When she'd discovered the dramatic change in films, she'd pegged Elijah to like the more quiet thought provoking films the girls at the high school so hated-- Kol she'd suspected would love the violent horror movies so like the plays he used for force on humans in the past. But there he was, when she leans back, looking through the rooms and watching his side as he sips blood, watching a dull chick flick. Rebekah hadn't lasted half a chick flick film the one time one of the girls from the school had invited her with them to a slumber party, and Kol seemed to be relishing in it.

“I don't know what that means!” Kol calls back, his eyes never leaving the screen as Klaus descents the stairs. Rebekah watches him stop in his tracks, just like she herself did, the moment he spots Kol sprawled out on the sofa. Kol turns to look at them for a few seconds, “Are you two going to stand there all day? I quite enjoy my privacy you know. Also don't you have school of all things Rebekah? it's getting late! It's at least six in the morning already. What if you get detention?” he mocks.

Rebekah bristles and runs up to slap the back of Kol’s head, his whole body launches forwards, popcorn scattering everywhere. “Well?” she asks, spiteful, “Don't you have cleaning to get to? What if mother grounds you for the mess Kol?” Klaus snickers behind her as Kol glares, but instead of retaliating like usual, he rolls his eyes and turns back to his stupid movie.

“Nik, won't you be a darling and compel someone to clean up this mess Bekah made?”

Klaus snorts as he pats Kol on his shoulder and leaves. After a minute of watching Kol genuinely being engrossed in the stupid film, Rebekah goes and swoops up her bag, she has some dinner to hunt. It's Saturday, so there's no school. But if that was what she was leaving for, a part of her had hoped their mother would be awake to see her off, just like the human girls at the school gets their parents to do every morning.

 

-And as happy as I am to see you, Davina Claire, I... I truly wish you didn't join this particular coven-

 

He's through his third chick flick, Klaus having fled when the second one booted up, the fourth is running through its trailers a room over. Two of the DVD’s he’d snatched from the store didn't allow for him to skip to the menu, giving him plenty of time to prepare and indulge in some sad, unhealthy binge eating. (If he was a human) During the third films trailers he'd thrown together a chocolate cake that needs maybe a few more minutes, he isn't quite sure, the smell of blood is overpowering his ability to smell how far along the cake is.

The bloods smell is just turning right as he stirs the pot before him, the blood slowly being heated. He pulls the pot of the stove just before the blood can begin to congreal and swirls it around, pours half into a cup and leans against the cupboards. He sips at the blood, enjoying the heat as it the blood goes down with closed exhausted eyes.

“What are you doing brother?”

Kol startles, jumping as his eyes fly open to catch Elijah standing in the doorway with his hand hovering over the kitchen table, his dark eyes flicker from Kol, to the blood and lastly the oven half hidden by him before returning back to Kol’s face. “Uh,” he says intelligently and looks down into his cup which he knows Elijah can smell isn't just blood. “Eating?” he says innocently, behind him he knows a syrup bottle lies knocked over from when Elijah had startled him, still standing upright is the baking materials he'd used. A few chocolate bars lie besides a large flat metal plate on the island between he and Elijah. Kol feels like taking them and bolting. 

He'd thought everyone had gone out. 

“You're… Cooking...” Elijah proclaims dubiously. 

“Yes,” Kol says and decides-- he doesn't care -- he'd needed to act like Davina was still there to spoil. The past nights constant berrange of nightmares leaving him weary for anything familiar, (the last one hadn't let him sleep despite his exhaustion, the image of Davina never knowing him, dying because of his interference with the past. The image flashes behind his eyelids when he blinks) so for a minute he needed to just be able to pretend . “So what?” he asks and takes a sip of his sweetened blood, it almost feels like too sweet, leveling an uncaring and bored look at his brother.

“I did not know you knew how to bake,” his brother comments softly, drawing closer to Kol who shifts on his feet. “I am sure mother will be pleased.”

Kol bristles at the assumption and hisses, Elijah stops. “What are you even doing here? Leave me be Elijah, it's not like you care anyway.”  he steps back but doesn't leave, instead he watches Kol as he puts his cup down and crouches down to peer into the oven. It's good enough, he decides and slips on some muffs before pulling the cake out and smacking the form upside down onto the metal plate. The cake releases, from the form and he quickly scatters the squares from the chocolate bars over the surface of it, letting them melt themselves. 

Elijah watches in silence as Kol quickly gulps down the last of his blood. Slowly, as Elijah watches him, irritation crawls over Kol. “Where's Finn and Esther? Can't you go annoy them?” He snaps and aggressively drains the last blood from the pot into his cup, spilling some out from his rushed pouring. “Want some?“ he juts the cup out at Elijah with hostility flooding off the gesture.  

His brother squints at him and hesitantly takes the cup, he sniffs at it, grimacing before taking a taste and making one of the funniest disgusted faces Kol has ever seen his brother make. Kol laughs, grabbing his cup back and placing it on the counter as his lungs begin to hurt from excessive laughter.

“I don't see what was so amusing about your horrendous drink.” Elijah comments as Kol slowly calms himself, giggling in small bursts when he makes the mistake of looking up at his brothers face.

Eventually Elijah leaves with a frown when Kol keeps giggling hysterically and carefully using a spoon to spread the chocolate out on a nice somewhat even layer. He stabs the spoon down into the cake once when his giggling gets a bit too hard for him to control the spoon. (Davina would laugh at the holes and take a picture, just to show him when he claims to be the best cook in the world)

He abruptly stops giggling and sags, dully watching the slowly drying chocolate. He downs the remaining blood in one gulp and feels frustrated hunger flare in his gut and snarls. Resisting the urge to throw the cup at the opposing wall, he slides down to the floor and puts his face into his hands.

After a while he hears the television shut off.

 

-What a precious family moment. Pardon me while I go and gouge out my eyes with a hot poker-

 

Kol eventually leaves the kitchen with the cake in his hands, and finds his mother sitting at the dining table eating with Finn and Elijah. Their conversation ends-- they were talking about the upcoming dance, making preparations as Elijah, on the phone, conveys their mothers wishes-- when Kol puts down the cake in the middle of the room and leaves, quickly returning with plates, forks, and a knife. He sits down at the table and crosses his arms, staring defiantly at Finn and his mother. Elijah clears his throat and returns to his phone call.

“Aren't you going to ask for a slice Finn?“ he asks hauntingly, a smirk crossing his face as he turns to Esther. “Mother?”

“I would love to Kol,” Esther says so he quickly slides a slice over to her, it almost smashes into her wine glass but stops just before. She takes a small bit into her mouth and widens her eyes with surprise. “So this is what chocolate tastes like!” she says with a weird happy tilt to her voice, both his brothers look at her oddly as she takes another bite.

Putting up another slice onto a plate Kol snorts as he slides it over to Elijah before sending a last piece at Finn. His eldest brother looks at the cake suspiciously, like Kol would poison it, which he probably should have and made up a lie about mother being allergic to chocolate. Elijah ends his call eventually and takes his own taste of the cake, there's hesitancy in his hands when he brings the bite to his mouth, Kol smirks. Apparently his syrup blood left a bad impression. 

“It's quite delicious Kol,” Elijah praises and leans the other way on his chair, “But I must admit that I'm curious when exactly you learned how to create human foods.”

“Why Elijah, you'd almost say you didn't know me at all,” He mocks and hefts himself a slice as he stands and slips a piece of paper with his phones number to Elijah. Elijah doesn't know him, none of his siblings ever really knew him at this point in their lives, and now they don't know anything about him at all. “I'll be going out, call me when I'm needed.” mother looks disappointed, and its clear Kol inherited his ability to deceive from her, she's quite good at looking like she genuinely wants to spend time with her monstrous children.

He's only out on the courtyard when his phone rings and he picks up with a quick “Hello?” knowing it won't be any of the previous owners contacts as he'd blocked all their numbers.

“We need you in ten minutes Kol, that's when the tailor will arrive,” Elijah says in a voice that tells Kol that he's well aware he's being obnoxious. “Do be on time, I'd hate for our time schedule to need more reshuffling.”

Kol wretches the phone from his ear, observing the time when Elijah promptly hangs up before he can reply. “You're a bag of dicks Elijah!“ he calls into the mansion and walks off to sit on one of the benches that's been moved there during the night as he struggled to sleep. He chooses the one remotest from his family, where he can remain undisturbed.

He eats in peace, watching nature and kills a bird that flaps a bit too close to his face, getting blood on Klaus’ clothes. Suck it , Kol thinks like a child as he looks at the almost unnoticeable blood on his elbow, he's also pretty sure there's colorful feathers in his hair but Rebekah always did say he preens like a bird, why not make some litterallity to that statement.

 

-:-

 

“You're late,” Elijah says shortly when Kol finally joins his family, off to the side Finn is being shoved into a suit that somehow already perfectly fits him. “I said ten minutes, it's been almost two hours.” 

“Ah,” Kol says and takes out his phone. “I'm afraid I'm still getting used to… Technology, brother, I am a senior citizen from the early nineteen hundreds after all, it's only to be expected.” Rebekah snorts from where a woman is putting finishing touches on her nails with a metal file, at her side sits a piece of his cake, they mustn't have told her he made it. Or Rebekah would never have eaten it.

“I see you're enjoying my cake.” he comments mildly, watching her choke on it as a compelled tailor rushes over to to him and basically begins stripping him from his clothes to take his measurements.

“W-what?” Rebekah stutters, dropping the fork in her hands to her lap. 

“Yes, It would seem our brother is a man of hidden talents.” Elijah comments mildly as he sorts through ties.

Rebekah ignores the cake and them after that, remaining silent with all but mother who walks in a few times, now in a newer dress than the one she'd worn a few hours ago.

The Tailor slides the last piece of clothing onto Kol’s shoulders, he looks in the mirror and just like last time, he looks great. Really, a lot of morderen clothes fit him better than the older styles that's been normal throughout the centuries. At least that's what his wife tells him when she throws a piece of clothing at him she wants him to try out.

Mother is fitting them them out in almost identical suits, Kol thinks as he glares at Finn through the mirror. It's quite creepy when he thinks of it like that, like some creepy harem of her own children

He slides his eyes from his own body and spots Rebekah watching him in the mirror, “There's that face-” she starts and is interrupted as Nik comes barging in.

“You went after Elena… What is wrong with you!?” Nik says, a large departure from the easy amusement of this morning when Rebekah had been bullying Kol.

Rebekah wiggles in the couch, “Here we go.” she says expectantly, a devil may care smile on her lips. 

“Do you want another dagger in your heart?” Klaus asks predictably. 

Kol snorts, “Always the daggers,” he whispers, “So creative, come up with something better-- like, do you want your fingers ripped off? There's probably enough time for them to regenerate before mothers ball.”

“Oh, go back to staring at yourself Kol.”

“Well, it's certainly more pleasant than staring at your face,” he returns, grinning when Klaus’ face darkens. “It's all weird and twisted-- ah, exactly like that.” 

“Be quiet Kol.” 

“Let me guess-- do as I say, or get a dagger in the heart?” Kol mocks, shifting his voice to sound more like Klaus. 

“No, but this is my house.” Nik threatens. 

Kol grins, “Oh that's just perfect! Just what I was waiting for, a reason to leave this dump. I'll go pack my nonexistent things right now! Oh and when I'm gone remember to take some cake and celebrate my release from this family.” 

“Nicklaus,” Mother interrupts before Klaus can throw Kol out and thus giving his mom no way to get the stubborn Klaus to let him in again. “Come with me.” Nik glares at Kol one last time and follows mother, getting an earful of his past treatment towards them. 

Kol smirks down at Rebekah who mirrors his expression with a bit more glee.

 

-:-

 

Kol spots the doppelganger sitting with the girl Klaus has a crush on, Caroline, watching her for a beat before looking away. He follows Bekah further into the uncomfortable and claustrophobic atmosphere of the grill and groans to himself when she immediately intrudes in on the two girls conversation.

“Careful Caroline, it's all well and good until she stabs you in the back.” his sister snarks, glaring daggers at the doppelganger. 

“What are you doing here?“ Klaus’ blood bag asks in the corner of his vision. He's taken to watching Caroline instead, “I know your mom's rules, no murdering the locals.” 

“Get over yourself Elena, it's not all about you,” Rebekah says to her and half turns to Kol. “You, stay and don't cause trouble.” 

One of his eyebrows pull up as if to say, and you aren't here to cause trouble? Bekah snorts and leaves, approaching one of the humans, a vaguely familiar boy. She rummages around her bag for a second and hands him an invitation, that's who he is , Kol thinks, remembering the boy Rebekah had asked him to kill, only to want him alive after a small display of kindness. Matt, if Kol remembers correctly. 

“Oh my God. She's inviting him to the ball,” Caroline huffs, watching the two before turning to the doppelganger. “Why is she inviting him“ 

“Probably to get this reaction from us.” the living bloodbag says.

“Probably.” Kol agrees reluctantly, earning a yelp from the blood bag as she whips around to stare at him. 

“Who the hell are you?“ Caroline demands narrowing her eyes at him without fear. He can see why Klaus would like her. 

“Kolby Claire,” Kol says, using the pseudonym he's gone by the last seven years with Davina. “Rebekah is showing me around your little town.”

“Are you like her boyfriend or something?“ Caroline presses further.

Kol snorts with disgust. “Ew, never." 

“Then why are you here? How do you know Rebekah?“

“I've known Rebekah for almost a thousand years, she's like a sister to me. Really Darling, if you want to inquire if I'm available just plain ask.” he smirks, leaving over the seat besides the bloodbag. 

“What?“ Caroline startles, her eyes flashing over to the doppelganger for a second. 

Kol snickers. “Don't worry darling, I'm afraid I'm already spoken for,” he winks rising as Rebekah turns from Matt and gestures to Kol to follow her, “I'll see you at the ball.” he says and leaves, catching up to Rebekah by the exit, finally able to breathe as he hits the fresh air. 

“What was that?“ Bekah asks. “They’re the enemy Kol.”

“I was just having some fun. What about you dear sister? What were you doing with that human boy?” 

“He's Elena's friend,” Rebekah explains, giving the same reasons as the last time-- ”If he dies, she suffers.” 

“How devious Bekah, you can't touch the doppelganger so you go after her friends.” 

“Well,” she says, turning to him. “I've already been scolded once today, so I hoped you'd help your baby sister out.” 

“And kill him? Now why would I do that, maybe some human contact will temper your bratty predisposition,” he teases and gets whacked in the arm for his words, “I'm kidding! I'd love to spit mother in her face, just tell me when you want the boy dead.”

 

Chapter Text

 

-Sorry about the mess. Ugh, it was a little crowded when I arrived, and I prefer more intimate gatherings-

 

 

The ball is dreadfully boring, filled with unknown people just there for the pride and tradition. None of Rebekah’s new friends are there, no one who aren't in any way important to the going ons of the town. Purely political and Kol would rather be anywhere but standing awkwardly among guests who stare.

But mother has instructed them all to go greet Mayor Lockwood, so he goes, playing the dutiful son and finds the mayor talking with the Salvatore brother Damien. They're talking about his family, about peace that won't last past Esther's schemes.

“Mayor Lockwood,” he says as he approaches to gain her attention, “We haven't met yet, Kol Mikaelson,” he introduces and shakes her hand. “I hope your town will embrace my family, just as they plan on embracing it.”

Damien slips a hand out besides the mayor. “Damon Salvatore,” he says-- It was Damon, not Damien-- and squints at Kol just for a second, “Have we met?”

“You mean besides when Elijah undaggered us? No, I don't believe so,” Kol answers and keeps his face carefully pleasant and blank-- because Damon hadn't been there the last time they'd been woken up, but he was this time. And yet, he'd asked the same particular question the last time. How stange. “Mayor Lockwood, I hope you'll take no offense, but I don't plan on staying in your town more than a few days. Then again I suppose you'd be happier and less stressed to have one less vampire wandering your streets.”

“Oh I don't mind, as long as no innocents get hurt,” Lockwood deflects, casting a glance at Damon. “But if you must leave, I wish you the bests of times in our town.”

“Well, with the easy access to blood bags this new century has--thus removing the necessity to even bite a person and risk their lives, I expect any future blood baths to be kept to a minimum.” Kol says, it's always been so for him, he's has an issue stopping once he'd started. He's gotten better at it-- depending on his hungry he is. Really, it's amazing vampires hasn't been exposed yet with all the rouge vampires killing people, especially in the new century with surveillance and a camera to record evidence on every phone.

“I…” she hesitates. “Certainly hope so.”

Kol smiles pleasantly and dips his head, “If you'll excuse me.” he says and leaves, just as the scent of Klaus’ blood bag reaches him and his strides lengthens. He finds he really dislikes her.

 

-:-

 

 

Kol sits on the stairs, watching the crowd through the light decorated railing as Elijah speaks of their family, and mothers love for dances. He rolls his eyes, embarrassed to be on the stairs with his siblings, overlooking a crowd that does not know them or fear them. Really, Kol likes attention, but none of the guests are actually interested in their family and Kol feels like an animal being observed by humans visiting a zoo.

Once Elijah stops speaking, asking everyone to join in on a dance, mother stops over besides him on the step he's sitting on. “I'd like to speak with you in private Kol, I haven't had the time because of all the planning, but will you speak with me later?”

Kol grunts, “Sure,” Curious for why she'd want to talk privately, she hadn't done that the last time. “After your party then?”

“Thank you son.”

 

 

-:-

 

The dance is repetitive, boring, and having to look at Klaus’ blood bag as she dances past is bloody maddening. He's asked the same woman as last time to dance with him, she's good, but he'd rather she was his darling Davina. Though in her absence he has imagine her face over the unimportant woman so he doesn't look like he'd rather sit and sulk alone than dance with her.

As they finally shift partners, Kol takes a step to the left, and as Caroline goes to dance with the boy Rebekah has a crush on, he intercepts his sister and grabs the older Salvatore’s hand before he can come near Rebekah and cause her heartbreak with his manipulations. He'd rather she be with the human.

Damon's face contorts, his smirk dropping when he notices the lack of long blonde hair on his dancing partner. He looks almost disgusted, Kol thinks and smirks wide and predatory, remembering the feeling of smashing a bat into the young vampires head.

“Well you look spectacularly mopey Damien,” Kol comments as they move with the dance, Damon's eyes keep being drawn to where the doppelganger dances with his younger brother. ”Is it because you'd hoped to lure my sister with those pretty eyes or is this dreary mood because of Nik’s doppelganger?”

Damon twitches annoyance crossing his face. “My name is Damon, not Damien.“ He protests.

“Ah, I must have heard wrong then,” Kol apologises insincerely, “My hearing isn't quite what it used to be, my age seems to be catching up with me.”

Damon's eyes roll, “Must be it.” he agrees sarcastically.

“Really darling, you don't need to worry about her, as long as she's perfectly human Nik will take care of her. It's really not that bad, I honestly do not understand your little groups insistence on killing Klaus. Your lives are all guaranteed to be happy and safe if the doppelganger just goes and donate blood a few times. It's not that atrocious, humans does it all the time these days. That's where we get our blood bags from-- and they get paid for it! Does your girl need some money and a pack or orange juice to be happy about it like all the rest?”

Damon makes a face, like he's been slapped. “I can tell by your facial expression that Nik hasn't thought that far ahead. Really, blood lasts forty days in those nifty bags, plenty of time for vacations and road trips too. Talk to him about it the next time you're having a tense and threatening meeting.”

“Do you even know your own brother? There's no way he would ever let Elena leave Mystic Falls.”

Kol rolls his eyes. “Then talk to Elijah, he seems to have gotten a brilliantly big sweet spot for yet another doppelganger.”

“Why don't you just talk with him since it's your brilliant idea?“ Damon returns sarcastically with a glare.

“I've been in a box for almost a hundred years, I don't desire a one way ticket back.”

“Maybe you should talk with him then.” Damon snips back, his gaze shifting over to the doppelganger as his expression turns more pained.

Kol glances over at the girl and Damon growls. “Pinning much?“ he asks with a roll of his eyes, watching as the doppelganger leaves with the younger Salvatore, “Really mate, it's not that complicated. If you both fancy each other, why not go at it? Who care if she still pines for your brother, he clearly doesn't care for her anymore. So it's really only a matter of time before she gives up on him and then you're the only one left. Of course you two can just share, it's not for everybody but she seemed quite pleased, walking in with a boyfriend on each arm. What is it they say these days? Sharing is caring?”

“You're disgusting.” Damon resorts

Kol grunts as if considering it and sees his sister make a face at him from the crowd before retreating, disappearing. “…Hm, and you're a remarkably good dancer Damien.”

“I already told you my name isn't-”

“But it seems like my baby sister is pinning for my attention, I'll take a raincheck on our dance, darling.”

Damon's face twists hilariously, “Like hell you will-- where did Elena go?“ he suddenly asks, serious.

“Left with your brother a little while ago, isn't it scandalous.” Kol grins as Damon flee to find her

 

-If you are in the market for a gentleman, Mary-Alice Claire, I'm afraid you have the wrong Mikaelson brother-

 

 

“Kol,” Bekah says as she walks up to him. “I am hoping you will help your baby sister out with something?” she asks without need.

“You know that depends on what it is dear sister,” Kol comments absentmindedly as he watches his mother leave to have her secret meeting with the doppelganger. “So when are we doing this? I'm feeling spectacularly parched.”

“Give me fifteen minutes, I'll lure Matt outside.”

What had he said last time? Oh right--”Outside? Why not here on the stairs, make a bloody show of it.”

“You sound like an idiot, Kol,” Rebekah snaps. “Mother would kill you if you ruined her party.”

“You think me afraid of Mother?” He kind of wants to ruin Esther's party now that Bekah mentioned it-- he'd just have to find the right person.

Rebekah glares with distrain, “I'll see you outside.”

Kol watches as Rebekah lures the human outside walking through the gathered cars. Matt is the only human of the little gang of Klaus’ enemies that Kol finds he likes. The boy is very kind to Rebekah despite his fear, he treats her as a person-- and while he hadn't cared in the past, just wanting to create some chaos and kill the boy to sedate his blood lust-- now he sees Rebekah’s expression as the boy pulls a jacket over her shoulders and decides that the human Matt Donavan is worth preserving.

If he doesn't stand against them in the future.

Kol watches them go, Rebekah hurrying as she leads Matt inside and away from Kol who blinks. Thinking about his previous desire to kill the boy has made him hungry.

Stalking back into the mansion he makes a b-line for the kitchen, dodging guests and flings open the door to the kitchen. He ignores the waiters and other humans his brother had hired as they go about their business, pouring champagne into giant bowls in preparation for Esther's spell. One human comments on the strangeness of it, but continues emptying bottles. Kol walks over to the private fridge and grabs of of the metallic looking plastic bottles filled with unseen blood. He puts it in the microwave for a brief moment before wandering over past the unopened bottles of champagne and snipping one as he goes. Unscrewing the cap on the flask of blood, he sips, feeling faintly hungry as he leaves with a champagne bottle badly hidden under his jacket. A few humans looks over and smiles secretly, indulging, looking at him like they would a young man snatching some more alcohol to get plastered at their own parents party.

Sometimes his young appearance is an advantage, especially in the new century where it seems the bar for being seen as a worthy adult keeps raising. It does cause some problems, Davina in particularly had a few comments thrown at her about him as she aged and he kept looking like someone in their mid twenties at the latest.

Grabbing a glass from one of the waiters he pours the wine into a plant and flees to a corner, replacing it with new unaltered champagne. He places the glass and bottle behind the plant and wanders around, sipping at his blood, making no dent in the flask’s contents as he watches people until a familiar face comes up to him.

“Hello Kolby Claire, what a surprise, seeing you here at your family's creepy ball.” Caroline says as she walks up to him, he spots Nik behind her, watching them suspiciously.

“Well I did say I'd see you didn't I darling ?” Kol replies with a grin. “I see you're wearing the dress Nik bought, tell me, has he charmed you yet?”

“I'm spoken for already.”

Kol hums, “The hybrid boy… the mayor's son if I remember correctly.”

Caroline blinks, her lip twitching. “So does everyone in your family know about my personal issues? Do you talk about me during dinner?”

Kol huffs, amused. “All the time, Nik won't shut up about you,” at her scandalized expression he quickly smiles. “He doesn't, but I like to know about anything that can lead to my being daggered. Seeing as Nik actually likes you, you're high on the list.” Kol admits to liking her too. He'd met her in San Francisco before, a few months after he'd gotten a piece of the hollow. Why she and her little family was there, he can't quite remember, but her and Davina had gotten along like a house on fire. A few months later Davina had packed a bag and was driving to Mystic Falls to hold a lesson on magic in Caroline's School. Davina had been delighted to meet up with Hayley and see Hope again for the first time since she was a baby.

Kol had been home alone and binged six Netflix series in the two weeks Davina was gone, face chatting with her and Hope everyday.

“Well I don't like him.” Caroline huffs temperamentally, her cheeks puffing.

"That's probably for the best darling, Nik isn't too kind to those he loves if they disappoint him.”

“Like you, every time he's daggered you?” she asks immediately and rears back a small bit, like she'd gotten the attention of a poisonous snake.

He gives her a sardonic smile and swirls the bottle of blood in his hands. “Yes.” he says honestly--that was always Nik’s problem, feeling abandoned-- and takes a sip of his blood. Caroline watches the bottle with wide eyes.

“Is that blood ?” she asks quite astonished as she watches him screw the cap back on, he stops half way and unscrews it.

“Hungry?” He asks and holds it out to her. “It's AB positive, I've found I like that one the best since my undaggering. It's certainly neat not to have a taste lottery with every neck you bite. But I suppose blood-types aren't as neat for you? you've lived with the knowledge of them your whole life, they were still a new novel concept the last time I was awake.”

She accepts the bottle. “Oh hey, it's warm-- My favourite blood-type is B positive.” she says and goes at it, downing half the bottle at once.

“I get it-- Be positive!” Kol laughs and Caroline smiles as she finally returns the flask to him. It's almost empty. “Well you were hungry, sure you don't want to just devour the rest instead of leaving me with pitiful leftovers?”

“Ah,” she says and pauses, not saying anything more for a while. “Sorry, I guess I was more hungry than I thought.”

“I'll just get another,” he says and finally sees his mother return to the party, slowly nearing the stairs with a glass in her hands. “Well then, thank you for the opportunity to escape this boring party for a while. But I'm afraid I should probably leave before Nik rips my head off and I have to spend the night regenerating.”

He flees before she can reply and sees the waiters begin to mingle with the guests, handing out glasses of champagne. Picking up the glass he'd hidden he feins past a waiter like he'd picked up a glass and looks up, watching as mother ascends the stairs from the corner of his eye.

Finn walks up to him, standing besides him as mother stops and clicks her glass, gathering the attention of her guests. She gives the same boring and odd speech as last time, describing her joy at having her family reunited to guests who doesn't know them and doesn't care. Still, they do the polite thing and toasts with her. Kol doesn't, just to be defiant as he watches his mother frown at him, but Finn elbows him.

“Toast you fool,” he says, glaring judgmentally. “Mother has done all this for us, stop being an ungrateful brat.”

With a roll of his eyes he downs the whole glass and turns to stare at Finn, “Happy now?” he says and and thrusts his glass at Finn, leaving before his general hatred of Finn causes him to lose his temper.

He wanders the rooms and encounters a group of teenagers who all turn to him at once. They're all huddled together in one of the unused guestrooms, just besides the one Kol had claimed last time. He hasn't used any of the rooms yet, having instead slept one of Klaus’ couches and in one of the doorways to the entryway. Despite having been given one.

“Hey dude--” one of them say, a boy with blonde hair who's clearly drunk. “You're Kol right? Know if your family got some alcohol stashed somewhere?”

If he had been Hope, Kol would've told him he was drunk enough, that it's all about attitude and not how dunk she is, but he isn't Hope. Kol smiles wide and closes in on their group, joining their whispering voices as he springs a plan with them for Nik’s personal collection, how to get in without getting caught, with three exit plans that are sure to be tossed out immediately. Young drunk people have never been ones for following plans.

He sees them off by the intersection to Nik’s room and they all wave and giggle with silly smiles and stumbles as they head to Klaus’ room like a drunk pack of wolves.

He watches their backs with a wide smile, remembering them from the last time, they'd caused a lot of chaos in their endeavor to find alcohol, only to be caught by Klaus and causing a commotion as they'd tried to flee and one had fallen off the stairs. He hadn't witnessed it himself, having had a broken neck, but he wished he had. Apparently watching Klaus retrain himself as he chased them at human speed had been amusing.

“Kol,” Rebekah says as she nears him. “About Matt, I changed my mind, I don't want you to kill him and ruin mother's night.”

“But you seemed so excited about the prospect before!” he says, his face curling into a smirk. “Don't tell me you like the boy.”

“Sod off jerk, just leave him be okay?” Rebekah snaps.

He nods and gives a salute-- “Will do, Bekah.”

“I mean it Kol,” Rebekah echos. “Don't hurt him.”

“Do you really think so lowly of me baby sister? That I would hurt your little crush?” he feins heartache and gives her a tight and vicious smile as he grinds his teeth together, almost grimacing at the expression she makes.

She does.

Before she can turn and leave, he grabs her shoulders and attempts to give her his most ernest face, “I will not hurt him Bekah, for you.” he promises

 


-we're, uh... we're kindred souls-

 

He finds Matt Donovan at the front balcony and strides right up, thrusting his hand out, “Hello mate, Kol Mikaelson,” he says and Matt takes his hand suspiciously, introducing himself, “what are your intentions with my sister?”

“I-- Uh.” Matt says, freezing in place.

“Don't worry mate, just don't break her heart and you'll be fine,” Kol reassures and leans into Matt's personal space, “I've heard it's customary to give a “shovel talk” to your siblings potential partners, so if you break her heart, you won't just have Bekah to fear.” A lie, Kol knows it will end in heartbreak, Rebekah is incapable of accepting love without running away when it gets too serious.

Matt opens his mouth to reply and startles when Damon comes out from behind, pushing him away from Kol and grabbing the original, slamming him back and pushing him towards the balcony. The image of falling off and getting his neck broken flashes in his mind.

Again? Kol thinks annoyed as he pushes Damon's hand off him and shoves the young vampire away-- I didn't even try to kill the boy this time! Damon growls, his true face peeking beneath the surface of his eyes as he glares with misplaced hatred. He attacks, speeding up and ramming his shoulder into Kol’s gut, it takes all he has not to fall as the guardrail creeks behind him.

“Calm the hell down mate.” Kol says and pushes against damon, grabbing his wrists in tight holds and squeezes. Maybe a little pain will snap the younger vampire out of whatever funk he's in. There's a snap and Damon howls and his wrists are crushed under Kol’s hand. Kol releases him as he stumbles back and pauses, his face twisting as he snarls and disappears.

Kol sighs and turns to Matt, who stare at him with wide eyes. “You don't reckon--” he grunts in pain when something is suddenly stabs into his left lung and a body slams into him. Matt shouts as Kol stumbles against the balcony railing and looks down as blood pools in his mouth, there's a bottle shoved into him, he can feel small prices disconnecting from the bottle as he attempts to rip it out. He'll rip off Damon's hands this time, clearly crushed wrists aren't enough to get the picture if he heals them that quickly. Damon slams into him again and grabs at his chest, putting pressure on the bottle and digging it deeper into his lung. Kol chokes, he might be a slight on nature, but he breathes air-- not liquid-- just as the humans do. Damon uses the distraction, and Kol is thrown off his feet through the railing which breaks and onto the ground below. He does not fall--he's thrown down with all the strength of a hundred or so old vampire behind it.

He hits the tiles with a wet and painful crunch, Kol hisses as he feels a few particularly sharp prices of metal embed themselves into his body, a small one will have to be removed manually by someone else later, having exactly dug in where he can't reach on his back. Another feels like it's pierced his other lung through his back. A few of his bones snap upon impact and twists around, snapping into place to heal as Damon drops onto him and grabs his head to break his neck.

Kol growls through the blood, coming out more like a gurgle, his vampyric face surging forth as he pulls his steadily healing leg up and slams it into Damon with enough force to snap his fractured bone and send Damon crashing into the car parked closest to them. Something snaps, bones, Kol thinks with satisfaction. The car tilts dangerously, almost falling over on its side before slamming down, back on its wheels. He hears Damon groan as he slides down on bent legs, straightening up to the best of his abilities with all the bones Kol broke in his body.

“Damon!” the younger Salvatore brother shouts as he comes rushing out the front doors, followed by guests and his siblings who must have heard the commotion, above he can see Matt and Rebekah peering down at him from over the ledge of Klaus’ broken railing. Someone screams loudly in the gathered group but is quickly shushed, just a moment too late as more guests hear the scream above the music his mother is playing throughout the mansion.

Kol pushes himself to his feet, standing mostly on one leg as he watches Damon. With his other leg useless, the idiot will have to come to him. Or--

Kol chucks quarter of a cracked tile at the vampire with his good arm and flops down in a heap as the momentum carries his arm around. The tile slams into Damon and he hears him screech. He lands on his side and rolls over, smiling wide and vicious up at the stars as metal digs into his back.

There's another scream among the crowd, and it doesn't take long for more to join it.

“Damon!“ Kol hears over the chaos as he lies, not bothering to rip the flask or metal out. “What the hell were you thinking? Are you crazy?” it's the brother.

“Maybe a little.” Damon's voice groans bitterness tight, “far be it for me to cause a problem.” Kol is fairly sure the steps he hears is the vampire staggering off pitifully, not all that victorious.

Then Elijah is bend over him, his eyes roaming Kol’s body for injuries, only finding the bottle in his lung despite the amount of blood pooling around him. He'd tell him they're mostly on his back, but he's steadily being choked on blood seeping into his lungs. “Why are you smiling brother.” Elijah asks and picks him up , he winces at the blood staining his suit but continues on -- not letting Kol have any retribution for the treatment.

So he protests, flailing in his brother's arms as Nik shouts for the unaware guests to be compelled-- well he doesn't word it like that, far too clever to accidentally cause more of a panic. “Be still Kol.” Elijah commands.

“You really took a beating there brother.” Niklaus comments, turning from the guest he's compelling to snark at him.

Kol points his middle finger at him, fuck off , and looks up at Elijah as he's carried into the dining room and carefully deposited onto the edge of the table with his back facing the empty space to the middle of it, “Mother will take care of you,” His brother says with a hand on Kol’s shoulder, withdrawing himself as their mother comes in, fake worry edged in her face. Elijah nods to Esther, “I'll go help with the guests” he leaves, completely missing the fuck you , Kol sends at him.

“Put that vulgar hand down,” Mother says softly as she approaches him and almost hesitantly lays a hand over Kol’s arm. “I'm going to pull the flask out okay?” she says and grips it's neck, pulling it out in a swift move that has blood splattering over her dress. Kol gasps, chokes on blood and coughs.

“It's okay,” his mother soothes, soothes. If Kol could laugh he would have. “Come let's turn you around so I can get to your back.”

Kol rolls his eyes and sits up, wincing when his back stretches painfully, and folds his legs under him, carefully moving his ruined leg into the right position as he turns his back on his mother. Letting her help.

“Oh,” Mother says behind him and tugs at his clothes, “We need to get your suit off.”

They get his top clothes off with some difficulty from the many places the pieces were nailed to his body by pieces of metal and rock. Mother thankfully rips out the piece stuck in his lung first, letting them heal up as she continues on smaller bits and pieces. She runs for a piece of cloth and cleans off the blood from his skin and he hacks up the remaining blood in his healed air system all over the table.

“There's some stuck here.” he says wetly, bending his arm back to tab at where she'd ripped out a rod and left something inside. The skin and flesh has healed over, but he can feel its invasion, that among other smaller ones that's going to make their way into organs unless he gets them out. Sometimes he'd wish their bodies rejected objects.

He slips off the table, shirtless and stalks through the doors to the abandoned kitchen, grabbing a thin but sharp knife from one of the walls and holding it out to Esther, handle first.

“What?“ she asks, paling as if the thought of cutting into him is worse than killing her own children.

“I can do it myself.” He offered, he'd prefer that. But she'd said she wanted to help and he's curious by nature.

Mother thins her lips in determination, taking the knife from him and holding like it's a live snake, “No-- I'll do it.”

Kol juts an eyebrow up, and shrugs-- he kinda wants to see her squirm through it if just the thought is making her uneasy-- before opening a drawer, the fourth on the left, middle one, plucking out a marker. He carefully dots around his skin everywhere Esther left a piece inside him, as he goes to the already ruined dining table. Five in total. “Well then mother, better get to cutting me open.” he grins wide pulling himself up onto the table.

Mother takes a breath, breathing out on his back and hovers the knife over his skin for a few hesitant seconds before pushing down. Kol screams, and mother jumps, screeching, the knife falling from her hands and Finn appears as the door smashes into the wall it hangs off.

“Mother!“ Finn says worriedly, his eyes flashing around for danger and Kol doubles over, laughing loudly.

“Ohh!” he says between laughing, the pieces inside him jumbles, but he's quite used to pain, squeezing his reaction down into a small wince. A bit of blood pools on his tongue, vampire blood, tastes weird, “You should have-- heard yourself mother! And you Finn! Coming in to-- rescue her from your abhorrent brother! Really? Do you think so little of me?”

“Kol!” Mother scolds, “I really thought I'd hurt you! Was it all to scare me?“

“That is what Kol does, mother,” Finn, the prick says. “You shouldn't trust him.”

“Oh come off your high horse Finn!” Kol resorts, “You've only known me for one-tenth of my entire life! And even before Mother and Father murdered us, you never knew me.“

Finn twitches, “I've seen enough.”

Kol rolls his eyes and slips down to pick the knife back up. What did he expect from the man who killed him? “Of course you have. Regardless, I was serious mother.” he says, holding it out for Esther.

She picks it from him and Finn scoffs. “You truly believe him, mother?”

“This is the second time you've mentioned what your father and I did to you.” Mother says to Kol instead of responding to Finn.

“Well,” Kol says, “It's only the worst thing to happen since Silas.” and finds its the truth, vampires have bred so many problems in the last thousand years. Really, the only saving grace is that because of it, he lived long enough to meet Davina, and even that will never be the the same as it once was.

Mother stares at him, silent.

“Well?“ Kol says, and gestures to the two dots he'd drawn over his chest-- and he really doesn't look forward to having his lung cut open for glass, but it must be done. “Are you going to take them out or not?”

“Mother you truly don't--” Finn protests.

Ester interrupts, “Finn, be quiet while I help your brother.” she says and hesitates again, before stabbing Kol in the chest, he gags against the blood rushing to his mouth and sees Finn shift his frown to a satisfied smirk.

Sadistic bastard.

Esther's face is deadly pale as her fingers searches the incision, pushing horribly at his flesh and lung until they retract and his body closes up, this time without the uncomfortable and painful feeling of glass stuck inside him. She disgards the bloody piece of glass on a napkin.

“Looks like Kol was actually telling the truth.” Finn snides off to the side where he watches them.

The next pieces comes out quicker than the first, mother less hesitant about stabbing him. One in his back takes her a few minutes of constant stabbing, his body healing around her fingers and locking her hand in place before she can find the shard.

“Well that was fun!” Kol cheers, jumping off the table as he grabs his ruined shirt, turning it in his hands a few times before shrugging it on. Better than flashing before Finn and his mother more than necessary. “Now if you'll excuse me, I've got a lot of blood to replace.”

“Kol,” Esther says, stopping him. “You promised to talk.”

“After the party,” Kol reminds her. “And I'd rather not be in the same room as Finn for more than a few seconds.”

“The feeling is mutual brother.” Finn says.

Mother injects, “I think my dance is quite ruined as it is, what even happened with that young vampire?”

“He attacked me.”

Fin snorts, “What mother means is, what did you do to make him attack you.”

“No,” Mother denies gently. “I mean why would he attack you?”

“I... Have no bloody idea,” Kol admits, “heartache? The doppelganger did go meet with you against his wishes.“

“About that--” Mother starts and Finn cuts in--

“Mother!”

“I'd like to speak with you about her Kol, please come with me so we can talk somewhere more private.” Mother steps to the side, her arm out to guide him-- and is she?

Is she trusting him?  Has his emotional (ugh) outbursts really been enough for her to trust him this time around? But why would that change how she saw him? He knows she’s seen and felt it every time he killed some random sod-- that she respects him the least of all her children.

Curious about what she's planning, he follows her up the stairs, Finn protests along the way but is unable to change his mother's decision. Not that it's a surprise. He walks over, peering down at some burning sage laying abandoned on the table  as Finn close the door behind them, standing silent for a beat, measuring.

And then she tells him. Tells him of her plan to kill her children, the linking spell, skirting past the sire bond Finn knows nothing off and the effects it'll have. She finishes, kind and empathic, using every bit of piece of information about his dislike for his own vampirism he'd accidentally revealed to her.

“Do you think I want to die?” Kol asks, not directly opposing her, “Do you think any of my siblings will just let you kill them? Why not just leave us be once we're human? I know I'd prefer that.” he would, if that was her plan. He doesn't know if he'd have it in him to stop her. He'd probably hold his brothers down while she did the spell. Rebekah would too.

“It doesn't work like that, you've all lived long enough lives already, longer than any of us were supposed to. Nature wants this Kol.”

“Nature?“ He says dubiously. It is because mother doesn't want to feel their victims torment anymore, and has nothing to do with nature. Sure nature wants them dead, he can still feel the part of him that was a witch scream at what he's become-- but that's not why mother wants them dead. Esther always was selfish, she'd been warned that nature would push back but hadn't listened, now she thinks nature will forgive her if she kills them. He could laugh.

“You were a witch once Kol,” Esther says and takes his hands. “I remember when you first turned, you told me you felt wrong , you begged me to kill you . That should have been my only warning about what I'd created, but I didn't listen then. I have now.”

Kol… doesn't remember that, then again, she might not be lying as the only thing he remembers from those first few weeks is the whiplash of going from uncontrollable anger and rage to uncontrollable despair, and then back again on a repeat of newly enhanced emotions. Eventually, he'd settled on anger and blood.

“Kol wanting to die? Now I've heard it all.” Finn scoffs.

Kol returns his expression, exaggerating it to mock him. “Well, you never used your magic either, you big loaf of moldy bread,” not the best comeback judging on the confusion flashing on Finn’s face. “And what about you mother? Will you kill yourself once we're dead?”

“I will kill myself, all of us were not supposed to exist in this century.”

“Really? I can go get the knife right now, would only take one poke, you did seem remarkably into stabbing after a while. Poke then rummage around in my insides, did you miss the shard on purpose mother? All to stab me more?”

“Of course not, Kol,” Mother scolds. “I never enjoy hurting my children.”

Kol grins, “Didn't feel like that to me. You were quite vicious, made it hurt a lot more than it usually would have.”

Esther goes green around the edges.

“Well if that's your reaction to just thinking about stabbing me, do you really think you can finish this?”

Esther's mouth flattens out with determination, “When the time comes I won't hesitate.”

Kol laughs at Esther, he fathom how her mind works her. “Really mother? You hesitate-- you pale at the thought of stabbing me-- but killing us all is just fine!?” his voice accidentally goes high at the end, squeaky with disbelief. “And you!” he whirls on Finn, “You're just going to kill Sage who's spend nine hundred bloody years waiting on you! Just like that!“

“What!?“ Finn says.

“Mother, you've been naughty,” Kol smiles, vicious with gleaming teeth. “You haven't told him about the sirelines, really, using your own son's suicidal nature against him and those he loves. Such a kind mother--” his head whips to the side, breaking with a loud snap.



-You don't deserve another chance, Kol-



He wakes on the table in the dining room, shirtless, Mother and Finn stands over him, watching him. He blinks dowsily. “What the hell happened?” Mother had been having problems with a shard--

“You passed out brother,” Finn says, helping him sit up. He thrusts an open blood bag under his nose. “Here you must be hungry.”

Kol takes it and sucks, the blood is cold but he almost doesn't notice as the hunger coursing through his body eases up. He's so hungry. Finn hands him another that he almost takes but rejects with a small wave in the end.

Kol slips off the table and staggers on his feet, feeling weak and tired. He should go sleep. He wants to go sleep.

Mother squeezes his shoulder and rubs a pattern into his skin, “Why don't we get you to bed?” she says and drapes his shirt over his shoulders, and lightly pushes him through the mansion and into a room on the far end. Nudging him at the   bed sitting in the middle of the far off wall, he lies over the bed, feeling groggy. “Sleep son.”

Her hands disappear, as he blinks against the dark. Before he falls out of consciousness, he hears her and Finn’s voices from behind the door.

“Are you sure this is safe mother?“

“Don't worry, he won't remember anything, I've made sure of it. Though I'll admit I'm baffled Finn, has Kol ever mentioned these sirelines before?”

A scoff. “I told you that he and his lies couldn't be trusted.”

 

Chapter Text

 

 

-He didn't just drop a bloody vase! He murdered me!-



Kol wakes with a gasp, heart in his throat as he falls off the side of the bed and lands in a heap. He heaves for air as he stares at the dust laying spread out under the bed.

He'd dreamt of Davina again.

Tomorrow-- tomorrow he can go see her.

And stalk her creepily from a distance, though he'd rather try not to.

His phone digs painfully into his hip, so he rolls over and pulls it out to see the time. Three AM. He groans against the headache thundering inside his skull and rises to his feet, looking around. He's in the room Elijah had shown him yesterday.

Walking over to the closet he finds a mixture of different long-sleeved shirts in different muted colours and brands all scream that Elijah ordered them for him. Eventually, he picks out a black shirt and pants before finding a jacket in the back and pulls it on. On his way out he grabs a blood bag, squeezing it down, his headache eases as he finally eats more.

Cold air draws pleasantly into his lungs as he leaves the grounds behind him and runs into the forest towards town, slowing his pace once houses begin appearing before him. Something… Feels wrong about him, like something is crawling over his head with painful thin legs. He claws at his scalp, scratching pleasantly and smoothing out his hair with clawed fingers.

He steals the two biggest watering cans he can find and compels a credit card and a lighter of some human. He finds himself a gas station and fills the cans with gas before pocketing the card in case he'll need more gas. Then he speeds, faster than a human eye could follow, but carefully as not to spill, back out of town.

Wickery Bridge is an eyesore as it appears before him, he isn't sure which parts of it is made from the white oak so he rips the Mystic Falls sign, that he knows holds white oak-- as it was the origin of the stake that had killed him--out of the ground, and throws it onto the bridge. The sign is joined by all the wooden parts of the bridge that he can find before he pours the gas out over the pile and spreads it around the bridge. Finding he'll need more, he runs back to town with empty watering cans and fills them back up a few times. Then, when he finally deems that he's poured enough over the bridge, Kol retreats to a safe distance. He lights the lighter he'd nicked and throws it at the bridge., watching as it immediately bursts into fire, spreading out and engulfing the entire structure.

He watches the fire with a wide grin and gasps when a bright light and hot pain flash through his skull “Agh!” Kol falls to his knees, clutching his head and looks up wildly through his lashes, searching for the witch who's attacked him. He finds only trees lit by the pyre he's ignited, and then an image of himself inspecting the ruined shirt from the night before takes over his vision. The image moves like the old motion pictures, snapping through as he talks with Finn and Esther. The sound is foggy, as if he's underwater at first but gradually clears up until the reel stops as his neck broke and he fell unconscious.

Kol blinks against leaves sticking to his face, he must have fallen when the vision ambushed him. Because he's laying on the forest floor, watching as a small bug crawls over his arm that lies out over the ground in front of him.

Esther's spell must have failed. Which is impossible.

Kol is a vampire and so he's got no magical defence. Sure they hold some power over the mind, they can compel, project memories, and a lot more. But they're still defenceless against magic, Esther had presumably not thought magic would be a problem when she tried to make them “safe.”

He'll look into it later, the issue holding him is that-

Esther had trusted him, And that really is the biggest punch in the gut, she'd trusted him. His mother who always speaks-- who had always spoken of how his siblings are better than Kol-- how they're more noble, human, good, kind, respectful, loyal, polite, generous-- even when he was small and only wanted her to teach him magic.

(She'd refused to teach him for a long while, all despite her own practice after Freya was taken. Eventually, she'd relented, but only because he'd begun causing accidents with magic he didn't know how to control. Even then, most of the things he'd learned were from figuring out how to work his magic himself, basing his experimentation on observations of Esther and refusing to leave when she did magic. He’d even begged the witch Ayana to teach him, she'd refused on grounds that it was Esther's duty. After that, he'd begun secretly paging through both their grimoires at night.

A thousand years later, after hearing Freya’s story, some part of him-- the part that despite his will, still craves approval-- had reasoned that her behaviour back when he was little, was out of fear that Dahlia would come to take him. Having met Freya and seen her magic, Kol can reasonably say he'd been almost as powerful as her-- and maybe, a traitorous part of his mind whispers, that had scared his mother. But then he was dead and there was only blood, anger, and despair)

Wincing, he sits up and eases a palm over his face to remove leave and rub out the discomfort residing in his brain.

Esther's memory spell had failed.

And Kol remembers-- except it doesn't change anything, as he already knew her plans and he still doesn't know what to do. He would like to go talk with her, convince her to just stop at making them human, but he knows it's impossible. Esther has never been one for seeing her own faults, she'd rather see them in everyone but herself.

Elijah and Nik can take care of it. He decides, knowing that Elijah will be suspicious enough to bring in Rebekah and learn of Esther's plan. They don't actually need him to be there, he can just lie around the mansion and wait for it all to be over.

And Kol needs something to distract himself with, he decides as he watches the fire burn up the last piece of wood sitting in the middle of the large flickering fire reaching out over the creaking bridge. Maybe he should just cook, or compel himself a Playstation or Xbox? Or maybe he should just get drunk out of his mind-- except the last time he'd gone to drink his brain away in this town, Nik had been lured away and Kol had been daggered.

There's nothing left but ash and charcoal once the fire is discovered and the fire department is sent to douse the flames before they can potentially reach the surrounding forest and start a forest fire. Not that they would, Kol isn't an amateur. (and the five trees that are currently gone were all on purpose.)

He watches from the sidelines as Sheriff Forbes arrives at the scene and signs are brought over to stop drivers from driving off the ruined road and into the water below. Most of it may have been metal, but Kol doesn't trust the doppelganger not to find a splinter of white oak, just to kill them, so it all goes.

He waits until all the humans leave to double-check for surviving wood, posing as a curious bystander in case someone sees him. Finding nothing he leaves as the sun begins peeking out over treetops, regaining his stolen memories must have knocked him out for a long time.

No matter.



-:-



The zombies are dying, getting pelted down without mercy as he awkwardly turns the door handle and pushes his shoulder against the front door. He's playing Plants versus Zombies of all things. He hasn't played it in years, and usually, Davina would be the one to rob him into doing it. But there his is, playing it while carrying two bags, one hanging off the palm of his hand that clutches at his phone and one gripped in his left hand.

(he's been doing a lot of things Davina would do with him the past two days-- and it's only been two days, it feels like weeks have passed.)

“Kol,” Esther says, suddenly there at the top of the stairs, his head snaps up to her, startled, he almost drops the bags and phone. “Where’ve you been? We were worried when you weren't home.”

“Needed some fresh air, no need to worry about me mother.” he deflects and taps the screen of his phone a few times to collect sun energy. He listens carefully, picking up the heartbeats of the inhabitants of the house, and picks up a steady slow beat of someone sleeping from Rebekah’s room-- that means Rebekah didn’t fall into Damon's clutches.

Good.

“I always worry about you Kol,” Esther says and descents the stairs to join him. She steps over to him and peers down at the bags in his hands, seeing the odd assortment of plastic and paper packaging she frowns. “What are these?”

“Breakfast, hope you're hungry mom .” he mocks and swiftly leaves for the kitchen, once inside he places his bags on the counter and runs out at vampire speed, nicking one of the house keys before returning and locking the doors that lead to the kitchen. He needs some privacy.

He mechanically spreads out the foods he'd bought with the humans credit card and pulls the bags over to the far end once they're free for food, the Xbox and games remaining untouched in them. Kol prepares the food blankly, focusing on the task to distract from his issues about being in the past.

Sometime later as he's robotically flipping too many pancakes, Rebekah knocks on the left side door and shouts for him to come out already because ‘the smell is driving her crazy,’ and ‘Why did he have to choose such a stupid hobby anyway?’

Then, before he knows it, he's leaning against a cupboard staring blankly at an assortment of Davina’s favourite breakfasts.

He needs a life besides his wife and making spells for her company to sell-- which is technically still about her. Really, Kol just never found anything he enjoys quite like being with Davina, magic, cooking, and killing people.

And Davina frown at him for killing innocent people, so everything that remains can be in some way connected back to Davina. Davina is-- well Davina, magic reminds him of her and their amazing ability to magically work out any problem with her power and his knowledge. Cooking and baking he started because of her and general boredom-- but still-- Davina, and killing mindlessly-- which, while fun, is something he swore off on.

Wiping the tear from his eye Kol turns and forces his emotions down and thinks about his siblings (it's easier, he never missed them much when he was separated from them for long periods of time. But the ones here aren't the same people he knows, much less settled and much more ruled by their bloodthirsty vampire nature. He misses the future versions of his siblings somewhat. Especially since he came from a sombre but joyful last dinner with Nik, to land in the spiteful and backstabbing past.) He quickly begins cleaning up after himself, giving his eyes time to return to normal. Once he finishes he quickly slaps some water in his face and pulls the hot foods from the low heating oven and out on the central island in the big kitchen. Then he grabs some plates and forks, knives, spoons, whatever he feels might be needed and puts them over beside the foods. He quickly piles something up on a plate for himself and pours some hot syrupy blood into a flask.

He checks the time-- around 8 am-- and unlocks the right side door, the one that leads out into one of the living rooms, and immediately Bekah appears before him with narrowed eyes.

“Are you trying to torture us with the smell of pancakes brother?”

“I certainly did not plan on that, besides sister, the pancakes only make up around a tenth of what I made,” he smirks and lifts the flask in his hand, “Bon appetit-- if you dare.”

Bekah scoffs, ”You wouldn't poison your foods, have you no shame as a cook? Would you poison your baby sister?”

Kol remembers the time a witch who'd been secretly plotting Davina’s death had dined with them, and he poisoned the amazing piece of veal he'd grilled with something he knew wouldn't affect Davina. The man had been dead three days later and his wife happily alive. “I would.”

“Kol, you're finished.” Esther says as she comes up.

“Have fun.” he says and leaves, looking at her is worse than chores.

He flops down on a chair and sips at his blood, finding his appetite lacking before nipping at his useless foods, slowly his siblings and mother joins him, making conversation as he scrolls through the odd sites made by real witches that Davina and he had found back in the future. Nik is the only of siblings who refrain from eating the human foods, instead, he sits with a glass of blood as he sketches spells. Elijah is all too polite to refuse the food, Finn follows mother who is human and therefore does need the food, and Rebekah does enjoy the taste of human foods on the rare occasion.

“Thank you for the food brother,” Elijah says, suddenly addressing Kol for the first time in ten minutes. “I'm quite surprised, this is very much unlike you.”

“Yeah well,” Kol says searching for anything that his past self would say about himself cooking-- only problem, his past self had no reason to ever even try cooking. “Uh-- it is reminiscent to magic. Gathering ingredients for a spell-- or food.” he lies.

Elijah doesn't look convinced, neither does Nik or Rebekah, only Esther and Finn. But then again they do know about his longing for what he once was, unlike the rest of his siblings.

He needs to control himself before Elijah does something with the suspicious look he throws at Kol every time he opens his mouth near him.

“I think it's delightful,” mother says and, Kol who's focused on Elijah catches the look that flashes over his face for a beat before his brother flattens his facial expression. Kol would kill someone to not be out of practice with keeping his emotions down. “I think we should all endeavour to find hobbies so we don't just lounge around doing nothing all day.”

“Bekah does have school Monday,” Kol says, “She'll probably make some friends now that we're settling, and get to do all those girly things they do in my-- what did you call them Rebekah? Chick flicks?”

Esther looks surprised, “You're attending the high-school?”

“Yes mother,” Rebekah says, head held high despite Nik’s judgemental stare. “I've been making human friends, like Matt whom I invited yesterday.”

Successfully turning the conversation from himself, Kol looks back down at the phone in his hand and writes down a quick warning message on one of the spells posted. If the witches who posted the spell would use it, they'd end up killing themselves.

He misses his siblings. The ones that sat with him as they spend time together before Nik’s sacrifice. They're his siblings, Bekah with Marcel, finally allowing herself something, Nik with his daughter, having finally found something to keep him going-- even if that is going into death-- Elijah, whom Kol doesn't think he can ever really forgive for what he did, but who is also so different from the strangers sitting before him.

Kol is truly alone for the first time in years.



-Little Brother, you always did love a dramatic entrance-



“Kol,” Klaus says, stepping out in front of the television. He ignores Kol’s quick and rude comment to move his arse, standing there until Kol’s character on the screen dies. Gunned down it seems. “Your game is getting on my nerves, go do something else.”

Kol puts the controller down with a soft snarl, “Well I'm bored Nik, and you just ruined my kill streak.”

“Is killing in a video game really equivalent to the fun I remember we used to have slaughtering humans?” Klaus smirks, remembering how he and his dearest little brother would make a game of chasing and hunting down humans as they fled.

Kol leans back in the sofa, spreadning his arms over the back, he studies his nails disinterested, “Well there is a nice hunting element, Nik,” he says with a lazy blink, he hasn't looked at him even once. “You should try it, it simulates the feeling of hunting quite nicely.”

There's no bratty reply to rile Klaus up, really, Klaus had suspected he'd be able to start a fight or anything by ruining his game. Truly Klaus is finding his brother's new sad and demure state disturbing and forewarning.

“If you're bored brother, why don't we go have some fun? Mother seems woefully distracted by something, which leaves the whole town ours for the taking.” he offers, pulling closer to Kol.

Kol rolls his eyes, stands and walks away. Avoiding him. “Not interested, sorry. Go play alone.” Klaus follows as his brother wanders and sits down in another chair, pulling out his phone. He waves his hand dismissively, ordering for Klaus to leave.

“You're coming with me,” Klaus says, leaving no room for disobedience. He'd threaten Kol with a dagger to the heart, but mother was right, it'll take time for their family to come together, and threatening to dagger his siblings doesn't further those goals. He grabs the phone from Kol’s hand instead, pocketing it in his jacket. “Or I'll make your life the bore of a lifetime.”

“Really Nik?” Ah, there's some of that familiar tone that is followed by something bratty. “You do realise I don't need technology to entertain myself right? Or have I acclimated to the new age so well you think me one of those technology addicted teens? You must be desperate for anything to entertain yourself with. But then, you must be an expert in having fun alone by now, you've got hundreds of years of practice after all. How bored you must be when I'm daggered, if this how you react from a few hours alone,” His eyes closes. “Now leave me alone.”

Before his brother can react, Klaus picks him up and runs through the mansion at vampyric speed. Picking up Kol and his jacket before taking his own shoes on and gapping Kol's, slapping the odd-looking red shoes Kol had found, into his chest. He speeds out, holding onto Kol as he struggles and finally dumps him on his ass in an alley just a few meters from the town square.

His brother looks up from the small cloud of dust his landing created and his furious expression freezes as he spots the town square sitting firmly on the other side of the road. Kol’s anger slowly slips off his face as he sits on the ground and he pulls on his shoes, tying the laces with quick fingers. He finishes and closes his eyes as his hands fall limp by his sides, fingertips feeling at the dirty ground. He breathes deeply, something Klaus has seen humans do in moments of intense emotions, whether to quell fear, anger, or happiness.  

Klaus doesn't think he's seen his brother look that vulnerable since they were turned. Maybe before, but Kol had always been odd, even as a witch. And like Klaus, the only thing he'd feared was Mikael.

Then Kol stands, a hard and determined expression on his face. “What do you want to do then?” he asks, his expression bleeding away into something not quite right for his brother, but still recognizable as Kol’s band of mischief.

“You've come to your senses then?”

“Sure, why not.” Kol says the same words he'd used when Klaus had demanded his loyalty right after his undaggering. He's since then heard it many times, the uncaring attitude like he's got better places to be than having fun with his big brother. He used to beg for attention all the time , now he avoids them like the plague. Only speaking to them when first questioned, always far away in his own world when they're gathered.

“Come, let's drink the grill out of business.” Maybe a bit of alcohol will loosen Kol’s tongue enough to reveal what's going on with him.

“Ugh,” Kol complains and pulls his jacket on, following Klaus. “pretty sure it doesn't work like that.”

He grins and leads his brother inside, walking him over beside the vampire hunter and his girlfriend. Kol glances at them, his gaze lingering far too long for it to be socially acceptable.

Well, Klaus thinks and looks the woman over, she is Kol’s type. Why his gaze shifts to Alaric too, Klaus can't guess, the man isn't Kol’s type. Alaric notices them immediately, of course he does, Klaus did loan his body once.

“Can I have the phone back now?” Kol asks the second he diverts his eyes. “I was actually doing something you know.” his eyes shifts around, as if watching something.

“Staring at yourself in the blank screen?” Klaus snorts and orders them a few bottles to start off with.

“Texting an idiotic witch who thinks she's good enough to make a spell for invisibility, she's going to rip herself in half. So, will you hand the phone over?” Kol gives him a truly impressive bitchy face, it's times like these that his resemblance to Rebekah is most prominent.

“When did you become a bleeding heart?” he questions and pushes the phone at Kol with a glass almost filled to the brim with delicious golden liquid.

“Since she's paying whoever can fix her spell.” Kol says and defiantly drowns the whole glass of bourbon in one go, ending it with a sharp and vicious smile. Daring Klaus to comment.

Klaus hums and watches his brother grow more frustrated as he writes on the screen, his fingers even moving to vampire speed after, maybe a few minutes of non verbally arguing with the one on the other side of the screen.

“She's a bloody moron, her calculations are wrong and she's not accounting for the water in the air, and somehow getting the brilliant idea that oxygen is the most important component,” Kol groans his head slowly dipping with the rush of intoxication. It's a bit early, Klaus notes, usually takes ten times more for Kol to begin slipping like that. “Hey you people,” Kol suddenly says, practically climbing over Klaus to stick his face at Alaric and the woman. “Do you have a pen or something?”

“What?” Alaric says ridiculously confused at suddenly being addressed.

“Well this moron isn't taking my very generous advice on her faulty spell, I'm going to fix it. So-- pen? Yes or no? It's a simple question, isn't it Niky?” Kol turns his head, his forehead colliding with Klaus’s chin.

That's enough , Klaus thinks and shoves his brother back into his own stool.

Kol sulks, but brightens when the woman holds out a marker, a grin cracking his face open as he pulls some napkins from the stack sitting an arms length away. He folds one out and begins drawing, quick lines with squiggles here and there, all things that make little sense to Klaus.

“Why did you do that?” Alaric says to his girlfriend as he begins dragging her from them. She's curious , the girlfriend replies.

Watching his brother draw out a spell is quite something, Klaus reflects as more napkins join the first in an increasingly growing spell. He'd heard that he, Klaus, looked quite like he was possessed by higher beings when he painted with his enemies blood. Even dunk as he is, Kol does look like he knows exactly what he's doing, like it's the easiest thing in the world to draw up a spell. Just like that.

This had been Kol’s life once, back before they were turned. Back when it wasn't uncommon to see Kol drawing out spells in the dirt or onto trees.

Klaus hasn't seen his little brother write a spell in a thousand years.

Then he's apparently done, as he stands and holds the phone over the spell, snapping a few pictures. “Idiot.” he growls as he pokes around his phone before placing it screen first into the spell and laying his head out over it.

“I feel really intoxicated Nik, are you sure they aren't doing anything to the drinks?” he should be clearing up quicker, it's like his supernatural metabolism has grinded to a halt.

“We've been drinking the same thing Kol,” Klaus pats him on the back once, “It would just seem that you've become a lightweight.”

“Ugh,” Kol moans and pushes the half-filled glass from him his eyes dart around the grill. “I've become a sad drunk, Nik this is horrible. Dagger me now, put me out of my misery.”

“Sorry brother,” he lies, “But you're quite too amusing like this.”

“Brother,” Kol repeats, not to him, but like an echo of a long-treasured word as he sits up, leaning his side and elbow to the counter. “I miss my siblings.”

“We haven't gone anywhere brother.”

“But they have,” he reiterates and blinks, turning his head towards Klaus with more control than he's been granted the last half hour. His metabolism must've finally begun kicking in. “Where's Bekah?”

“She went out with Elijah,” Klaus answers, “Now stop this dull questioning.”

Kol nods, his jaw clenches with the hand he grips at the table, he looks around and then turns to Klaus. “What was I saying?”

“About how you miss your dear siblings.”

“Bloody hell,” Kol says and fiddles with the marker in his hands before laying it away and taking a sip of his glass as he looks over the spell he'd written with new eyes. “Why’d I ever miss you wankers?“

Klaus thinks for a moment, about the betrayal that led to them daggering Kol the last time. “Because we're family.”

His brother looks away sharply, “Do you think they serve any blood here?” he asks.

Blood ? Klaus thinks, that's what's making his brother intoxicated, he doesn't have enough blood in his system. Weakened. When he thinks back, the most blood he'd seen Kol drink was the bags on the night mother came back. “Not likely, how about we go outside and get a snack then?”

Kol snorts, like the idea is ridiculous . “No, I'll just end up killing someone then. Mother would be furious and give me aneurysms,” he chuckles. “I wonder if it would be enough for her to commit filicide .” Kol laughs then, nonsensically.

“Come on Kol, when have you ever said no to a little hunting?” Klaus groads, there Kol does it again, rejecting fresh warm blood.

“So this is your plan? Drink the bar empty and end the night with a bit of hunting?” Kol says and watches him, eyes searching Klaus. After a bit, he nods, hopefully satisfied with what he finds. “Let's head back and get something to eat, then we can go find someone to hunt. I haven't had a good hunt in two years! My time. We can just compel the human to forget afterwards.”

Just as Klaus’ hopes rose, they fell crashing down. “Sparing your prey is no fun.”

“You sure that's not the werewolf talking?” Kol grins, easy and vicious as he bounces off his seat and moves on the toes of his feet. His fluttering about isn't enough to distract him as a very familiar blonde walks in. “Come on Nik! Let's leave this dump!” Klaus stops him.

Kol stills at his side and jerks his head to watch Caroline walk towards them, she hasn't noticed them yet. “Seriously?” his brother whispers and sits back down again as the blonde comes close enough.

“Caroline!” Klaus says, drawing her attention, and feels his disappointment at Kol disapparate.

Caroline stops, a look of sweet annoyance settling on her features. “Oh, it's you,” she says and crosses her arms.

He offers her a drink and she refuses him. “I'd rather die of thirst but thanks,” her eyes slide to Kol and lightens visibly. “Kolby, nice to see you again.” she says and leaves.

“Kolby?“ Klaus asks once she's gone, he'd never heard his brother referred to as Kolby. Hell he'd never seen Caroline be so happy to see him or any other of his siblings. Though the expression couldn't be described as happy, mealy happier than the ones Klaus receives.

“Hmm, just a prank.” Kol mutters, his eyes sliding around and focusing on the hunter playing pool with his girlfriend.

“Why does she like you ?” Klaus demands, “You're the least likeable of all of us, even Finn, the dull bore he is, is more likeable than you!”

“Well brother, maybe I'm actually the most likeable of us, and you're just the dull one.” Kol grins.

“Kol” he warns, if his brother is trying to do something to Caroline, he needs to know. Kol always did have the most devious and convoluted hunting plans, and he won't have Caroline trapped in one of his brothers’ webs.

“Fine,” Kol groans, “it's probably because I haven't tried to kill her or her friends. You should try it someday Nik, does wonders for your personal life. Who would have guessed that people actually like having their friends safe from immortal vampires?”

Klaus stares at him, combating the urge to stab his brother with a white oak ash dagger right here and now.

Kol pales, at his look. “If you wanted the girl to like you, you should just try to not kill her friends Nik,” he says hastily. “You think witches trusted me because I ran around killing them all the times? No, I showed them a sympathetic side when you lot-- that's you, Rebekah, and Elijah-- went around killing them, it really was quite easy. ‘ Oh little witch, I'm so sorry my wretched brother murdered your ancestor, why don't we search for a way to kill him together?’ The enemy of my enemy is my friend and all that.”

It's a bit late for that, Klaus thinks, not missing that Kol had described himself as his enemy. Or that he talked of killing him.

A mischievous smile spreads on his little brothers face, “Of course you could just wait sixty years for her boyfriend to die-- oh wait-- you turned him into one of your hybrids, so the lad will never die. Don't look at me like that Nik, most relationships in the new decade only seem to last twenty years at the maximum, then in twenty years, if she can ever forgive you, you've got your spot-” At his look Kol backtracks.

-”Or you could just stage an accident and be rid of him.”

Klaus thinks it over, the enemy of my enemy is my friend . He could use that, “Are you offering to kill my hybrid?“ he asks, he knows Rebekah had asked him to kill her date yesterday until she'd predictably changed her mind like a lovesick puppy.

The snort his brother releases is as insolent as its mocking. “Sorry brother, I don't fancy being hunted for yet another decade. These Mystic Falls people are like fleas, always out for blood and damned hard to get rid off. If your, Rebekah, and Elijah’s stories are to be believed. You're solely on your own in this endeavour.”

“Well,” Klaus says as he stands, putting his glass down. He can't believe he's about to follow Kol’s advice and play nice with the others so Caroline will stop looking at him with annoyance and apprehension. “You stay here.”

“Not bloody likely.” Kol hisses and follows him, leaving the marker and drawn on napkins behind him on the table.



-Attempting to be a better man for your girlfriend?-



The walls open up as he steps outside, the feeling of slowly being squished by shrinking walls dissipating. “I'm going home, have fun being rejected Nik, text if you need anything.” Kol says and finally leaves that damned grill behind him as Nik crosses over to speak with the girl Caroline.

Sniffing the air a few times as he walks, Kol clenches his jaw as his sharp teeth fall down. It's the vampire hunter following him-- why hadn't they gone for Nik? He'd left him there so they wouldn't go for Kol.

No matter.

He knows they're coming.

Slipping into an alley he leans up against a dirty wall and works to retract his teeth. It doesn't work and keeping his eyes from bulging with blood becomes harder as the hunter bends the corner and freezes when he sees Kol watching him.

“Saltzman right?” Kol asks and sees the hunter’s eyes drawn to the noticeable teeth behind his lips. He smiles wide, showing off one of his most deadly weapons. “Any reason you're following me? You do realize that if you poke me with anything I'll have to retaliate right? Seems like a waste of a perfectly good vampire hunter, so-- why don't you skedaddle?”

“Sorry, but I can't.” the hunter says, giving the expected response.

Kol sighs and runs ahead, slamming his body into the hunter, launching him at the brick wall behind him. He hears something crack. “Sorry about that.” Kol mutters and pointedly ignores the blood seeping down to the dirty ground before running all the way back home, too fast for the hunter to follow.

Once inside he flops on a couch and checks the time. It's just creeping in on eight, loads of time for his siblings to end Esther's spell.

Still, worry creeps in on him.

“Stop bloody thinking brain.” He says out loud and quickly rises to his feet, taking long strides to the kitchen he grabs one of Elijah's bottles of Scotch downing a tenth of it in one go. It burns pleasantly on the way down. Quickly setting it aside he pulls out blood bags and sniffs at one after ripping the cap off, discomfort and nausea rumbles in his stomach as he places the bag away from himself and stacks a few glasses up in a pyramid.

Kol steps back and sticks his thumb into his mouth and gnaws at the pad with his flat prey teeth as he stares at the assortment spread out before him. The smell from the open blood bag reaches him and his fangs fall, nicking his thumb. Blood spreads into his mouth and he grimaces, pulling out his thumb again.

Kol takes up the blood bag and hesitates before squeezing blood out over the empty glass’. Blood tickles everywhere, creating quite a mess.

Kol grins.

Oh if Davina was here she'd scold him for making a mess before squirting blood at him. Really, she doesn't have room to talk, playing with his foods like that-- it's his food, he should be the only one allowed to play with it.

His grin drops off his face, his jaw clenching and Kol closes his eyes, taking a deep breath and unhinging his jaw. He watches the blood drip down glass and carefully pushes away his grief and despair for fun.

He fails.

A scream tears out of him as he throws a blood bag across the room, watching it explode before taking a swing of Elijah's priced alcohol and feeling his mind lose its focus.

He picks his phone and sets on some music as his siblings’ supply of alcohol steadily disappears into his body. He dances on blood as he sips at the blood saved in his pyramid of glass, eventually slipping on the slippery floor and hitting his head against the counter as he falls.

He blinks groggily at the ceiling and glares at the drops of blood dotting the white ceiling in an odd pattern that kind of looks like a fox if he squints. A drop above him drips down, hitting him in the eye.

Kol flinches and reaches for his phone as his body begins filtering out the alcohol and his mind slowly returns to him. He shuts the music off and freezes at the footstep stilling on the other side of the door.

They followed him. Kol thinks furious, pulling a long kitchen knife from the magnets hanging above the counters. Re-adjusting his grip, finding it difficult to hold onto the knife properly with all the blood, Kol stalks to the door and kicks it open. The door slams into the wall and bounces back. There's a screech of surprises further away, in a different spot than the footstep had sounded.

Pushing away the door he kicks out and blocks the dagger shoved at his chest with the knife, guiding the dagger up, away from himself and out of his attacker’s palm. Twisting the knife in his hand into a reverse grip, Kol slices and blood spouts from Saltzman’s chest. Ready to dig the knife through his neck this time, killing him instantly, Kol’s arm stops just centimetres from the fragile human neck as a familiar vampire struggles against his arm. Somehow summoning the strength to hold Kol’s arm hostage, or maybe it's his own intoxicated state that has him at a disadvantage.

There's a twang of a bow being released and Kol jerks around, Damon, still hugging at his arm like a koala would its mother, flings around with him as he stops the wooden arrow. He throws it aside and jumps as Damon shouts-

“Now!”

-just barely evading the forward thrust of a white oak dagger aimed at his back.

Kol kicks Saltzman in the head, knocking him down and the dagger falls from his hands. Damon shouts on his arm again, suddenly biting into Kol's shoulder, spraying blood and covering Kol way more than he already is. With a hiss, Kol digs his fingers through skin and flesh and into Damon's collarbone, tensing his fingers around the bone, he rips.

Damon falls from his arm and Kol kicks him in the head for good measure.

He turns to the last human and screeches as vervain is sprayed in his face, something wooden pierces his arm and suddenly he isn't in Nik’s home.

Elena and Jeremy Gilbert stand before him, white oak dagger raised before plunging into his chest. Ready to kill him. Then he's dead.

No--

NO!

Fire burns over his skin, bringing agony as his being is torn to shreds, his mind stretches, fighting the drag to the other side. It rips at him mercilessly, stretching his limbs, pulling at his skin until it feels like it's being peeled off. He falls and grabs his head, clawing at his hair as his breath shortens out, coming out short before stopping. He gasps for breath like a fish on land, curling in on himself as tears run down the side of his eyes. His entire being screams with agony and torment.

He doesn't feel pressure digging in his back as his mind blanks out-- and he disappears up in flames.



-my least favourite recurring nightmare-



Damon stares at the original laying a few meters from him as Kol Mikaelson stops quivering, his body desecrating as he falls limp. Damon thinks of the panic he'd seen on his face as he'd fallen and finds it a stark contrast to the easy teasing he'd aimed at Damon yesterday during their mom’s ball.

“Alaric!” Alaric murderous doctor girlfriend shouts as she rushes over to Alaric. Damon rips his gaze from the original, ignoring his confusion and crawls to his feet, giving his collarbone laying discarded on the floor a painful glance. He slumps over by Alaric and bites into his wrist, holding it out over Alaric’s mouth. There's nicely smelling blood slowly pooling under him from the deep cut Kol had sliced into his chest. Damon finds he hated the sight of it.

They watch as Alaric heals, his skin knitting together as he ingests Damon's blood. The doctor slumps at his side and sighs, closing her eyes as she rests her hands over his chest. Damon watches her for a beat and turns to the original, staring at him. The doctor had sprayed him with vervain, some of which had hit Damon too, stabbed him with a stake-- and then he'd just fallen.

Pulling out his phone he quickly calls Stefan. “We got Kol.” he breathes.

Stefan is silent for too long. “Elijah is here, he's talking with Klaus.”

“What!?” Damon screams, the doctor flinches. “Are you telling me that Esther's linking spell didn't work-- wait for me I'm coming.” he hangs up.

Alaric stirrers besides him, a groan pulling out between his lips as he automatically pulls himself up into a more comfortable position. “What happened?” he asks and looks over at the original.

“He…” the crazy doctor hesitates, her arms shake as she lifts them off Alaric. “I somehow triggered a panic attack, it ma-- made it easy to dagger him.”

“An original had a panic attack?” Damon scoffs and rises to his feet. He peeks down his shirt, his collar is almost fully healed. “Anyway, you two take him. He's somehow not linked to his siblings, but that doesn't mean we can't use him later.”

Damon doesn't wait for an acknowledgement and leaves. He needs to save Elena.

Alaric can take care of vampires alone.



-Kol, finally. Did you bring what I asked for?-




Rebekah walks out from the messy kitchen to see her brothers back. “Where the bloody hell is Kol?” she asks annoyed at the mess. Kol will have to fix that himself, the bloody useless twink.

Klaus nimbly throws a phone at her. “It seems he's fled.” he says sourly, she knows he'd wanted their family together. First Finn betrays them, then Elijah leaves with guilt, now Kol has apparently left without a goodbye. Without even helping them with their mother.

Turning on the phone she sees Nik’s messages with Kol light up.

Nik sent: Esther and Finn are attempting to kill us all, come to the attached location.

Hours later Nik had sent: They escaped but we foiled their schemes. Meet us back home.

Then Kol replies. Farewell, I'm leaving town.

Rebekah frowns at the screen but turns it off and places it on the table.