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By The Dashboard Light

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“Is this really necessary?” Damon sneers, looking up at Jeremy. Jeremy just glares, because his sister is in danger and he’s not leaving Damon, the fucking psycho that he is, to guard her alone. They’re all taking turns guarding her in case Klaus sends someone her way, and Damon, for once, is doing it from a distance, parked on the street outside Matt’s house.

“Yeah, it really is,” Jeremy says, walking around the car and opening the passenger door. Damon doesn’t lock it, so Jeremy can only assume Damon’s protesting more out of habit than anything.

“Fine, as you wish,” Damon says with a flick of his fingers. Jeremy hates him, hates how he’s charmed everyone in his life into thinking he’s tame. Jeremy knows better. (Sometimes he can still feel the crunch of his spine breaking.)

“I don’t trust you,” Jeremy says. “And neither does my sister.”

It’s a low blow. An unnecessary one. But Jeremy doesn’t want Damon forgetting that he doesn’t stand a chance. Hope is a dangerous thing, especially to someone as unstable as Damon, and Jeremy doesn’t think his sister would survive it if Damon decided truly he wanted her heart.

Damon sighs. “I’m not dignifying that with a response, baby Gilbert.”

Jeremy grits his teeth. Being around Damon puts him on edge, especially with how easily Damon dismisses him. He doesn’t say anything, though. He knows that Damon will only retort with some joking remark, because no one’s opinion really matters but Damon’s, or possibly Elena’s.

But even that’s just Damon looking out for his own interests. Jeremy glares.

“Seriously, you gotta stop glaring. You’re going to get wrinkles,” Damon says, pinching Jeremy’s cheek lightly. Jeremy swats at him, but of course Damon’s hand is already gone. He’s maddening, like he somehow exists on more planes than everyone else. “Plus, it makes for terrible conversation.”

“What do you want to talk about? The time you killed me, or maybe the sad puppy dog eyes you’re always giving my sister?”

“It must be terribly dull, being Jeremy Gilbert,” Damon says. “Your sister has the interesting life, and you’re just… there.”

Jeremy takes a steadying breath. “I’d take my life over yours any day. All that pining over girls who love your brother…”

Damon’s eyes narrow, and he gives Matt’s house a significant look. “You don’t do so well with the ladies, sweet cheeks. That Vicki was a pistol, wasn’t she?”

Jeremy’s fists clench. “Don’t even say her name.”

“Why, you gonna get mad and cry at me?” Damon’s voice takes a lilting edge. “Don’t like reminders of how much your life sucks, do you? What about that one cute little vampire… Amy? Ashley? You know. The one who you failed to turn into a vampire for. The one you failed to save.”

Jeremy fumbles for the car door. He wants to punch at Damon, wants to beat him senseless, but he knows it’s useless and he isn’t sure how far the ring will go to save him. Leaving is better. He shouldn’t have even come; Damon wouldn’t let anything happen to Elena. He knows this.

But Damon leans across, grabbing the door handle with one hand. With the other he grips the top of Jeremy’s seat, trapping him. “Don’t try these games with me, sweetheart. I bite.”

Jeremy is breathing erratically. Damon is right there, close enough that Jeremy can feel how Damon’s body doesn’t have heat, though Jeremy thinks he feels warm enough for them both. Damon’s eyes are bright and unflinching.

“I’m not playing games,” he manages to stutter out.

He’s hyperaware of his pulse pounding in his neck. There’s a faint, phantom pain where his spine had cracked, and he tries to ignore it. Tries to look brave.

“Listen, Jeremy,” Damon says. He’s still uncomfortably close. “You might think you have a get-out-of-jail-free card,” He caresses Jeremy’s hand, their rings clanking together. “But I’m not going to pretend like you’re any sort of threat. You’re a puppy.” With that, he ruffles Jeremy’s hair.

Jeremy snarls before he realizes that it’s playing right into Damon’s observation.

Damon laughs. “See?” He flicks Jeremy’s lip lightly. “Puppy dog.”

Jeremy’s shocked by how cool Damon’s fingertip feels against his lip. He tries to think of something to say, anything, but Damon’s too close. He feels trapped. He knows that Damon twists situations around to his own advantage and that he needs to turn it back around, but he’s too overwhelmed to come up with a plan.

So he narrows his eyes and says, “You’re wasting a lot of effort on a puppy, then.”

Damon laughs, but doesn’t pull back. “Well, it’s that you’re so adorable, of course. Floppy ears and clumsy paws.”

And then Damon’s practically nuzzling his neck. “And all that fresh puppy blood pumping away in there.”

“No,” Jeremy says. “No, no, no. You’re not getting my blood.”

“Don’t worry,” Damon says, lips brushing lightly against Jeremy’s neck. “I’m not going to eat you.”

“I would believe you a lot more if you weren’t practically licking my jugular,” Jeremy grits out.

“Oh, but I thought you enjoyed not believing me,” Damon offers lightly, pulling back just enough to look Jeremy in the eye.

“I’m going,” Jeremy said. “You win, I’m leaving you alone.”

“What if I don’t want you to leave me alone?” Damon asks, twisting and doing something with his voice so that all Jeremy can think about is sex.

Jeremy reaches for the door handle again. Damon is seriously off his rocker if he’s trying to seduce Jeremy.

“Come on, I thought the puppy had a bit of bite in him after all,” Damon says sweetly. He tilts his head; his lips are dangerously close to Jeremy’s.

“You’re in love with my sister,” Jeremy says flatly. Damon’s shifting slightly forward, close enough that their noses bump.

“And?” Damon says before kissing Jeremy.

Jeremy’s kissed vampires before, but never a boy. It’s different in ways that might just be Damon, who is as pushy and insidious in this as he is at everything. The hand that had been braced on the top of the seat is now curled into Jeremy’s hair, half-sensuous and half-threat.

It’s too strange. Jeremy is torn between fight or flight, and this time he chooses fight. He kisses Damon back roughly, like he can push all his anger and fear and hatred into Damon.

Damon laughs, shoulders shaking, pulling far enough back to say, “Thatta boy,” before swooping back in for another kiss.

Jeremy isn’t sure why Damon instigated this, isn’t completely sure why he’s not running, except for how warm he suddenly feels, the way his skin feels like it’s buzzing, the way that Damon’s fingers brushing the bare skin of Jeremy’s neck makes him shudder.

Damon reaches around to tug at something near the floor and Jeremy’s seat reclines, and Damon is suddenly pressing against him. All the way against him, proving that Damon is as fully involved in this as Jeremy is.

Jeremy hooks his thumb under the waistband of Damon’s jeans, pulling him closer.

“That’s the idea,” Damon says, rolling his hips in a way that makes Jeremy gasp and thrust up against him. Jeremy is hyperaware of every point of contact between them, and he’s desperate for more.

He doesn’t know if he’s just distracted or if Damon uses vampire speed, but suddenly his jeans are unzipped and there’s a cool, sure hand pressing against his dick, and he’s fumbling at Damon’s belt but mostly he’s enjoying the sudden, perfect pressure around his dick.

Then he gets Damon’s belt open and he’s reaching into Damon’s pants.

Damon murmurs, “Good boy,” in his ear and strokes his thumb over the head of Jeremy’s dick as a reward as Jeremy matches Damon’s rhythm.

Jeremy’s eyes close and he can’t concentrate on anything but the feel of Damon’s hand on his dick and the feel of his hand on Damon’s, and the sweet pressure when they brush up against each other. The pressure is building, building and Jeremy doesn’t trust himself to say anything.

He comes with a grunt, almost a surprise, as Damon’s hips started to stutter against his, and it takes all his willpower to keep jerking Damon off instead of just falling back against the seat bonelessly.

Damon comes a minute later, snuggling his face into Jeremy’s shoulder. Damon lifts his hand up to lick off his fingers one by one while Jeremy stares.

“Delicious and nutritious,” Damon teases, making a kissy face at Jeremy.

“Eww,” Jeremy replies, making a face at Damon.

“Don’t worry, next time you’ll let me bite you,” Damon says confidently. “I won’t even have to compel you.”

He rolls off Jeremy, somehow gracefully returning to the driver’s seat after tucking himself back into his pants. Supernatural grace, Jeremy supposes.

“Like there’d be a next time,” Jeremy says. His breathing has returned to normal, and he buttons up his pants.

“That’s what they all say,” Damon says with a quirk of his lip.

Jeremy feels a strange, sudden shock of sympathy for Damon. “What would you have done if Elena had come out?”

“Invited her in?” Damon suggests.

“Yeah, I’m leaving,” Jeremy says. “Keep your fantasies to yourself.”

“Say hi to Elena from me,” Damon says with a brief finger-wave.

“Fuck you,” Jeremy replies.

Damon’s cat-that-ate-the-canary grin makes Jeremy flush red. He climbs out of the car and starts to walk quickly away, but then turns and flips Damon off.

Damon’s laughter is bright and, Jeremy thinks, real.

He leaves before Damon has a chance to ruin it.