All three of our jaws dropped. Damon automatically let go of Stefan who dropped suddenly and he held a hand to his throat, rubbing it tenderly. All of our widened eyes were all fixed on the spitting image of me that stood casually opposite us.
“K-k…Katherine?” Damon choked out in bewilderment. She moved faster than I could see and was suddenly standing right in front of me. I could hardly comprehend the likeness between us. It was like looking in the mirror. She looked me up and down and then stared hard at my face. She looked confused.
“Well this is interesting…” she mused as she circled me. I didn’t breathe. She was a vampire and she was stronger than Damon and Stefan. She could snap my neck in a seconde and not think twice about it. She seemed to sense my fear, and she smirked at me.
“I’m not going to hurt you. toi are far too interesting. Can I ask toi why toi look like me?” She stood facing me again. I tried to speak but my breath caught and no sound came out. I glanced across at Damon and Stefan who were standing there motionless with their mouths still hanging open. Katherine looked at me as if demanding an answer, but when I didn’t respond she rolled her eyes and turned to face Damon and Stefan.
“Well? Aren’t toi happy to see me?” she smiled cutely. Damon shut his mouth slowly and his face turned from shock to anger.
“Happy? HAPPY?” he roared and she took a step back. His face morphed into vampire and he growled, “I waited for toi Katherine. I waited ONE HUNDRED AND FORTY FIVE YEARS for you. I tried desperately to get into that tomb. I never gave up. And then, finally, I got the chance and I rushed inside to find you. And guess what? toi WEREN’T THERE!” He yelled at her and she stood immobile. “That little vampire Anna told me that toi had compelled one of the guards to let toi free…She told me…” his face morphed back to human and he sank to the ground on his knees. When he looked up his face was pure sadness. A lump caught in my throat as the dangerous, powerful vampire Damon looked on the brink of crying. The amount of sorrow that had filled his normal look of confidence and smugness was just heart-rending.
“…She told me…you knew where I was. toi always had. And yet…you never came back for me…You never even cared. And when she a dit that…my world fell apart. My l’amour for toi had been so strong. I thought that I would finally see toi again after years apart and we’d be together again. But I was wrong. How could you?” He choked out and he stared at the mossy forest floor. I gasped silently as I saw a tear drip from Damon’s face and hit the ground. He looked so sad. So helpless. I went to go and pull him into my arms but Stefan looked at me and shook his head as if to say, “leave him be.” I nodded and just looked at the miserable vampire that was kneeling on the cold leafy forest floor. Katherine stared at him and looked at a loss of what to say.
“Damon…I…I’m so sorry. But I’m here now! And I’ve come for you, my darling. I tried to come before but things…came up. I l’amour you, I always have,” she a dit softly. But I didn’t buy a word of it. And neither did Damon, apparently. He sprang to his feet and rubbed his eyes furiously.
“So things came up constantly for one hundred and forty five years, huh? toi l’amour me huh? Just get out of my life Katherine. I don’t l’amour you. Not anymore.” And with that, he turned on his heel and disappeared into the forest. Katherine reached her arm out desperately and took a step, but Stefan held up his hand.
“No, Katherine. Damon’s right. Go. You’re not wanted here.” Stefan sped over and stood in front of me. “You abandoned him. I’ve never seen such love-driven madness in one person. He loved toi plus than words can say Katherine. We all saw that,” and Stefan motioned at me. I nodded in agreement. “For him to find out that toi had been free all the while, he fell apart. toi killed his l’amour for you.” Stefan glared at her. Her mouth fell in a dramatic pout.
“Well, this reunion wasn’t as fun as I’d hoped,” she said, smiling a cruel smile. Rage flared up inside me. All that stuff she had a dit to Damon about loving him still had been a lie. I wanted to coup de poing her but I knew if I did she rip me to shreds. Stefan growled.
“I a dit GO KATHERINE!” he roared and with a blow-kiss she was gone. He breathed hard and turned to me.
“Come on Elena. I think we need to find Damon.” He turned his back to me and motioned for me to climb on. I obliged hesitantly and we sped off. My eyes stung as the wind blew like knives into them. I squeezed them shut and then we came to a halt. I prised them open and realised we were standing in front of the Salvatore house. The door was open. I slid off of Stefan’s back and we walked slowly into the house. Stefan stopped.
“He’s in there. I’ll give toi two some…time.” He a dit unwillingly, but before I could answer he was gone. I ran swiftly into the house and my gaze fell upon a figure in the fauteuil near a roaring fire. I walked quietly up behind him but he didn’t turn around. I knelt beside him but he just stared into the fire, not blinking. His eyes were glazed over and he held a bottle of whisky in his hand. I removed the bottle and held his chin in my hand. I forced him to look at me but when he did the sadness in his eyes overwhelmed me. He didn’t say a word. He blinked slowly whilst staring me in the face blankly. After a while his eyebrows narrowed and he looked at me properly.
“I’m sorry…” he whispered, but I shushed at him and helped him to his feet. I wrapped my arms comfortingly around him and pulled him close.
“Damon,” I cooed softly. “You’ve done nothing wrong. She’s the one who should be sorry.” I gritted my teeth and set my jaw as I thought about the self-serving chienne of a vampire Katherine. I smiled weakly as he looked into my eyes.
“I loved her so much. I was convinced that she loved me too. And to have that torn away so suddenly…” he choked out. I held his face in my hands and kissed his cheek. I then wrapped my arms around him again, and he pressed his face into my hair. We stood there, motionless, in front of a crackling feu for a long, long time.