The Next Chapter

Chapter 47

A/N What an awesome return of Vampire Diaries. Though now that I'm really into the Buffy/Damon pairing, that ending of that episode threw me for a loop. For now, enjoy this new chapter!

Chapter 47

"Buffy."

Buffy rolled over and buried her face in the pillow.

"Oh, wake up already!"

The Slayer's eyes snapped open and she found herself face to face with Rebekah. Buffy groaned and she pushed her face further into the pillow. "Go away!"

"Look, I'm taking this top."

Buffy sat up and took the top from Rebekah. "Stay out of my closet."

"But you have cute clothes."

"Go shopping for your own. You're stretching mine out."

"You're not that much smaller than me."

"Shut up!" Damon groaned on his side of the bed.

Buffy sighed and got out of bed. She pushed Rebekah out the door and into the hallway. "Stay out of my closet. I did not adopt another sister. I don't want another annoying, bratty sister to steal my clothes."

"And I don't want to be your sister. Though Nic would have it otherwise…."

Buffy gritted her teeth. "Rebekah, if you're going to stay here, then you're going to abide by my rules or I will revoke your invitation."

"Then I'll start killing people."

"Then I'll get Stefan to call your brother in and let him deal with you."

"You don't control Nic."

"No, but I can make deals with him. He likes those."

Rebekah rolled her eyes. "Fine. At least tell me where you shop so I can indulge myself."

Buffy smiled. "The internet." She turned and shut the door in Rebekah's face.

Damon wrapped an arm around Buffy as she slid back into bed. "I think she likes you."

"I think I'm going to drive a stake in your heart."

"What time is it?" He hadn't opened his eyes yet.

Buffy glanced at the clock. "Almost eight."

"What time are we meeting Elena and Rick?"

"Ten."

"Can we sleep more?"

"Yes." She curled up closer to her boyfriend and closed her eyes, letting herself drift as he played with her hair. Just as she was about to doze off, Buffy's cell phone began to ring. Damon groaned and Buffy sighed, grabbing her cell. "Yes, Elena?"

"Are you guys ready yet?" Elena asked.

Buffy looked at the clock. "It's not even nine."

"Rick and I are up and ready."

"We said ten."

"Can't we go earlier? I want to see this."

Buffy sighed. "Give us thirty minutes and we'll meet you there."

"You know," Damon said as Buffy hung up. "I could've sworn that you weren't her legal guardian anymore."

"It's not like I could stop her from seeing me as her guardian even if I wanted her to."

"You're more than just her big sister." Damon sat up and leaned over, kissing Buffy's shoulder. "You're like a mother to her. The closest thing she and Jeremy have to one."

"Does that make you their father figure?" Buffy asked playfully.

Damon let out a loud. "Ha! They wish."

"You'd be the coolest dad around."

"And the hottest."

Buffy rolled her eyes and shook her head. "You and I are so not cut out for the whole parenting thing."

Damon looked surprised. "I think you are."

"Not hardly. Even if I could have kids…. I don't want them."

"Have you ever wanted them?"

Buffy had to think about it for a moment. "Actually, no. When I became the Slayer I was 15 years old. 15 year olds don't really think about kids unless they're babysitting them…. Or being forced to take home one of those robot babies. By the time I got old enough to actually contemplate kids, I knew that my life wasn't meant for them and I was actually ok with that. Did you ever want kids…. Before you became a vampire?"

Damon shrugged. "I always just assumed it was inevitable for me. That's what you did back then. You married and had kids."

"But did you want them?"

He looked at Buffy and smiled slightly. "Actually, I did…. Eventually. But then Katherine came along. Opened my eyes to a whole new world and, well…. You know the rest. But you're right. I'm not cut out for parenting. My life wasn't meant for children."

"Oh, destiny talk."

"You're the expert."

"Unfortunately. And right now, our destiny is getting dressed and going back down to that cave."

"And eventually checking on Stefan."

"That too."

"You know…. I think destiny has something else in store for us."

"What's that?"

Damon grabbed her waist and threw her back onto the bed. He pinned her down and grinned. Buffy smiled and pulled his lips down to hers.

Angel, Alaric, and Elena made their way through the caves with Alaric in the lead. Buffy and Damon were running late. No surprise there with all the noise they were making before Angel left the house.

"So the Lockwoods really have no idea that these tunnels are under their property?" Elena asked.

"Careful where you shine that thing." Alaric said. "Bats hate the light."

"Wait…. What?" Elena stopped and Angel nearly bumped into her. He moved around her to avoid that and went to stand with Alaric.

"Elena!" A loud whisper came from behind her and Elena turned, obviously startled. "Boo!" Damon said with a grin. Buffy stood next to him laughing.

Elena smacked Damon's arm. "God Damon!"

"Scardy cat." Damon taunted.

"Just ignore him." Alaric said. "That's what I do."

"So you really can't get in?" Elena asked Damon.

"No. Seems even the ancient Lockwoods were anti-vampire." Damon said, moving around Elena with Buffy.

"What do you mean 'ancient'?"

"See for yourself." Buffy said, taking Elena's free hand. Damon took the lead and Angel fell back behind Buffy and Elena. Alaric stayed just behind Damon with his flashlight pointed ahead.

"Well, this is as far as I go." Damon said, stopping. He looked at Angel. "You too."

"Too bad." Angel said. He obviously meant that it was too bad he had to stay behind with Damon. Buffy rolled her eyes as she and Elena followed Alaric into the cave. "Buffy." Angel tossed her his flashlight when she turned.

"Thanks." Buffy shined the light ahead of her, illuminating the cave drawings.

"What is all this?" Elena asked.

"Well, as far as I can tell…. It's a story." Alaric said. "In simple, archeological terms…. It's a really, really old story." He set the flashlights's beam on a drawing of three crescent moons in different phases. "That right there is a moon cycle." He moved to another drawing. "A man. A wolf."

"A werewolf." Buffy said.

"Yeah. It's the Lockwood diaries…. Pictionary style." Damon said.

"I don't understand." Elena said. "I thought the Lockwoods came here with the Founders in the 1860s."

"Well, maybe the Lockwoods did, but according to this wall these werewolves have been here a lot longer than that." Alaric said.

"How long?"

"Long." Damon said. "It gets better. Show her Rick."

"Names." Alaric said, moving to a different wall and shining his flashlight beam on them. "They're not native. They're written in Runic. Viking script."

"Vikings?"

"This name here…. Translated, it reads…. Nicklaus."

"Klaus."

Alaric shined his beam to the next name. "Elijah." And the next name. "And Rebekah."

"These are the names of the Original family?"

"Carved into a cave that's been here way before the founding of Mystic Falls." Buffy said.

"Or even the entire New World for that matter." Alaric added.

"This has gotta be one of Klaus's fakes." Elena said.

"That's what I said." Buffy said.

"That could be true except the last name up here made us think otherwise." Alaric moved his flashlight beam to the last name.

"What's the name?" Elena asked.

"Mikael."

"Mikael? Mikael as in the vampire hunter that knows how to kill Klaus?"

"Yup." Damon said. "And I like to call him Papa Original."

"He's their father?"

"As far as I can tell." Alaric said, setting his bag down.

"What are you doing?"

"I'm going to take pictures of every symbol carved into these walls so we can take them back to my place and start translating."

"It's kind of hard to see down here." Buffy said. "No natural light and all."

"What do I do?" Elena asked.

"Come on. Let's go get lunch for everybody."

"Eat without me." Alaric said. "I brought a sandwich down here. I don't want to hold you guys up."

Later that afternoon, Alaric had all the pictures arrayed on his island counter. Elena had begged Buffy to train her some more, so she and the Slayer were play-sparring behind Alaric. Angel interjected every now and then, showing Elena certain moves with Buffy, which annoyed Damon. So Damon moved in on the action to volunteer his services as a fake punching bag for his girlfriend and her teenage ward.

"These images tell a story." Alaric said, seemingly oblivious to the fighting going on behind him. "To learn the story, you have to decipher these images."

"Sloppy." Buffy said, pushing Elena down and taking her stake.

"Shut up." Elena said. "I'm new at this."

Buffy smiled and let Elena attack her again.

"The ghost of Christmas past, Mason Lockwood, said the cave would lead us to a weapon to kill Klaus." Damon said.

"Yeah, doesn't Mikael have a weapon?" Elena asked.

Buffy gently smacked Elena's arm and took her stake again. "Focus, Elena."

"Sorry."

"Yes, he has a weapon." Damon said as he watched Elena try to stake Buffy. The Slayer was just holding Elena's wrist while it was obvious Elena was using all her strength to try and stab Buffy. "Which probably means the wall will lead us to Mikael."

"Who we've already found and lost." Buffy said. She bent Elena's wrist and twirled Elena into her. "And you're dead again."

"I'm in heels." Elena said with a smile.

"Hey, I fight in heels all the time."

"You should've seen her when she was your age, Elena." Angel joked. "Giles once said that if a fashion magazine told her to, she'd wear a cat strapped to her feet."

Elena laughed and Buffy shook her head. "No one said you couldn't be a Slayer and stylish at the same time."

"Some of those shoes should've broken your ankles."

"Mostly those shoes ended up broken themselves. Or ruined." Buffy looked at Elena. "Just a tip: Suede shoes do not mesh well with killing demons and vampires. Or walking in dew covered cemetery grass."

Elena laughed. "I'll remember that."

"These images, at the very least, might tell us what that weapon that Mikael uses is." Alaric said. He was still oblivious. It was like dealing with Giles. And that thought sent a sad pang through Buffy's heart. Damon saw the sad look cross her face and he took her hand, kissing her palm gently with a smile.

"Then all we have to do is find out what they mean." Elena said.

Damon sighed, "If I'm being irritatingly optimistic like you two…. How do you suppose we do that?"

"Actually, I may have a plan for that." Buffy said. "If the story is about the Original family living here, then we should go straight to the source."

"You are not calling Klaus back here." Damon protested.

"Not Klaus, you fool." Buffy said, rolling her eyes playfully at her boyfriend.

"Oh. His Barbie doll sister."

Buffy shrugged. "She likes me…. I think. Or maybe it's just my clothes she likes. She keeps stealing them."

"Bribe her with your clothes." Angel said.

Buffy shot him a glare and waved the stake at him. "One more suggestion like that and I'm shoving this through your heart."

Angel smiled slightly. "It's not like you're never going to buy new ones. A package seems to show up on your doorstep at least once a week."

"So I have a shopping addiction. Big whoop. I'm a girl."

"There you go. Take her shopping."

"Ugh! I wish I hadn't have thought of this idea." Buffy grabbed her purse and headed for the door.

"I'll keep working on this." Alaric said.

"I'm going to check on Stefan." Damon said, following Buffy.

"Buffy, do you mind if I stick with you?" Elena asked.

"Be my guest." Buffy said. "You can remind me not to kill her when she gets on my nerves. Cause gods know that will be before she gets her story out."

"I'll see if I can be of any help." Angel said to Alaric as Buffy, Damon, and Elena walked out.

Buffy and Elena headed towards the school. For a Saturday, it was pretty busy. They spotted Rebekah with the cheerleaders. Buffy rolled her eyes as Rebekah set up for and executed a round off and two back handsprings. When she stopped, she came face to face with Buffy.

"You." Rebekah said. "Goody."

"I was hoping we could talk." Buffy said.

"About what? Stefan? Don't worry, Elena. I'm off of him until he starts treating me better. In fact, you should probably take a page out of my book if I'm being honest."

"Actually, I'd rather talk about this." Buffy took the photograph from Elena and showed Rebekah. It was her name carved into the cave wall. "I'm curious as to why you and Klaus have spent a thousand years running from your father."Rebekah looked a little spooked. "I should get back to the girls. Homecoming is right around the corner."

"Well, then maybe I'll ask Mikael when we wake him."

Rebekah stopped and turned around. "You're bluffing. You don't know where he is. No one does."

"So then who's rotting in that old cemetery in Charlotte?"

"If you wake Mikael, then we are all doomed."

"So then tell me."

"Why do you want to know?"

"Why don't you want me to wake him?"

"I need to get back to the girls." Rebekah turned and all but ran back to the cheerleaders.

Buffy rolled her eyes and turned away. "What now?" Elena asked, following.

"Now I'm going to meet up with Damon and fill him in on everything." Buffy said.

"What about me?"

"Will you head back to Rick's and help him and Angel out?"

"Yeah, sure."

"I'll meet up with you in a little while. Here," Buffy tossed Elena her keys. "I'll walk."

Buffy sat on a park bench in the square with her eyes closed and her face turned towards the sun. Damon said he would meet her there. He'd gone by the house to get Stefan a change of clothes since he was probably a little rank by now.

A shadow fell over her sun, but it didn't stop Buffy from smiling. She felt Damon's arms brace him on either side of her on the back of the bench and his lips gently touched hers. "Hi honey." He said.

She opened her eyes. "Hi."

Damon sat down next to her. "How'd it go with Rebekah?"

"Well, it kind of didn't."

"What do you mean?"

"She wigged out when I threatened her with Mikael and went back to cheerleading practice. She'll come around though."

"What makes you so sure?"

"She's going to tell me. She's scared of him. We're just going to engage in a little Power Girl power struggle first."

"Just make sure she doesn't power struggle you into a wheelchair."

Buffy's eyebrow lifted. "I can take her."

"Only when you've got my blood in your system."

"Which I do." Buffy sighed. "Willow's worried about the effects its having on me."

"Why? We're both a hell of a lot more powerful."

"I guess cause a vampire and a Slayer haven't ever done this kind of thing before and definitely not on a regular basis. She's just worried."

"Are you?"

"I can move Originals against their will."

"So…. not worried?"

"Not in the least."

"So how are you going to get Rebekah to come around?"

"She's a thousand year old vampire who's joined the cheerleading squad. There's a whole new set of rules in play." Buffy's cell phone chirped.

"So you think she'll be bored enough to tell you?"

"I'm thinking yes." She showed Damon her phone. There was a text from Rebekah that said she wanted Buffy to come home for a chat. "I better get over there before she changes her mind. You don't need any help with Stefan, do you?"

"Please." Damon stood up and pulled Buffy to her feet. "My brother isn't going anywhere. He's drying out and weak as a newborn puppy."

"Yeah."

"Are you confident in this plan of Lexi's?"

"It's worked before."

"But he wasn't compelled by an Original to be this way before."

Buffy nodded, knowing that he was right. "I don't know what else to try."

He smoothed her hair back and kissed her gently. "We'll figure it out. Go talk to Rebekah." Damon looked around for her car to walk her to.

"Oh…. I gave it to Elena." Buffy sighed. "I'll go pick her up. She'll want to hear this too."

"Are you sure she's safe with Rebekah?"

"I'm sure she's safe with me."

"Good point. Have fun."

"You too." Buffy kissed her boyfriend and laughed as he smacked her backside as she walked away.

Elena followed Buffy into the Slayer's house where loud music was blaring from the living room. Rebekah stood in the center of the room holding two filled champagne glasses. The bottle was in the champagne cooler on the end table. She smiled at Buffy like they were old friends and handed her one of the glasses. She was also in the green top that Buffy had taken back from her this morning.

"Hey! What's up?" Rebekah asked.

"You wanted to talk." Buffy said, setting the glass down and crossing her arms.

"You brought Elena."

"Yes."

"Good. Three heads are better than two."

"What are you talking about?"

"All right girls!" Rebekah called. "Have at it." Six girls from the cheerleading squad walked in all dressed in formal wear. "Ok, now twirl please." The girls did as they were told.

"You compelled your own private runway show?" Elena asked.

"I need a homecoming dress." Rebekah said like they should realize that. "So what do you think? Pick one."

Buffy rolled her eyes. "We're not here to help you shop. We're here to talk about why you don't want me to wake up Mikael."

Rebekah was suddenly across the room and threatening to bite the girl in the blue dress. "I said pick one."

Buffy bit her lip to keep from saying something that would get the girl killed. "The red one." Elena said.

"Ok. Buffy?"

The Slayer turned her angry eyes back to Rebekah. "Go for the red one."

"You didn't even look."

"You have till the count of three before I come over there and turn your head so it faces the other way. I'm sure you won't be healed from that before homecoming."

Rebekah debated for a moment and then let the girl go. "Go away. Remember nothing." The girls all walked out. Rebekah picked up her champagne glass and walked over to Buffy. "You do not threaten me."

"My house."

Rebekah was obviously irritated that Buffy wasn't fazed by her. "You will learn what I allow you to learn."

Buffy rolled her eyes. "We're getting nowhere with this pissing contest."

"Then do as I say."

"How about you tell me everything you know and if I feel like you're not lying to me, then I'll let you…. Raid my closet."

Rebekah raised an eyebrow. "You hate me stealing your clothes."

"Operative word there? Stealing. But if you tell me everything you know, then you get an all access pass for today only to pick out clothes to borrow."

"Keep."

"Borrow or nothing."

Rebekah sighed. "Fine." She moved around Buffy and Elena and headed for the stairs.

"Where are you going?"

"To look through your closet, of course."

"I said after you tell me!" Buffy said, following after her. Elena fell into step behind Buffy.

"We can talk while I shop." Rebekah threw open the doors to Buffy's room and marched over to the walk in closet.

"So are you going to start talking?"

"What do you want to know?"

"Elijah said that your father was a landowner in Europe." Elena said. "How did you guys end up here?"

"My parents had just started a family when a plague struck their homeland. They lost a child to it. They wanted to escape and protect their future family from the same fate."

"So how did you end up here?" Buffy asked. "This part of the world hadn't even been discovered yet."

"Not by anyone in your history books. But my mother knew the witch Ayana who heard from the spirits of a mystical land where everyone was healthy. Blessed by the gifts of speed and strength. That led my family here where we lived amongst those people."

Buffy and Elena exchanged glances. "The werewolves?" Elena asked.

"To us they were just our neighbors. My family lived in peace with them for over twenty years. During which time my family had more children. Including me."

"You make it sound so normal."

"It was. Though once a month, our family retreated to the caves below our village. The wolves would howl through the night and by morning we would return home. One full moon, Klaus and my youngest brother Henrick snuck out to watch the men turn into beasts. That was forbidden. Henrick paid the price. And that was the beginning of the end of peace with our neighbors. And one of the last moments my family had together as humans."

Buffy's cell phone started ringing and she cleared her throat. "Sorry."

"You better get that. That'll be Damon checking up on you."

Buffy grabbed it and saw that Rebekah was right. "Hi babe." On the other end was loud music.

"Hey!" Damon said over the music.

"Damon? Where are you?"

"No idea, but I'm pretty sure I'm overdressed. Are you still standing?""Elena and I are fine, but I can't talk right now."

"I'll be at the bar." Buffy heard Stefan say in the background.

"Was that Stefan?" Elena's head whipped around to look at Buffy.

"Yeah…. I kinda went off the book, but don't worry. I know what I'm doing."

"Damon, why did you let him out?"

"We talked about this earlier."

"We never said anything about letting him out."

"Would you just trust me? I've got this."

"Let me talk to him."

"Buff…."

"Let me talk to him."

Damon sighed and after a moment, Stefan came on the line. "Hello, Buffy."

"Are you guys at a bar?"

"As a matter of fact we are."

"Don't do anything stupid."

"Take all my fun away."

"Of course. And keep an eye on Damon."

"Don't worry. I won't let him stray. Bye, Buffy." Stefan hung up.

"Stefan's not locked up?" Elena asked. "How could Damon let him out!"

"He says he's got a plan." Buffy said, putting her phone back in her pocket.

"And those always work out so well!"

"Chill, Elena. I trust Damon." Buffy turned back to Rebekah. "Keep talking."

Rebekah found a picture of Stefan and Elena standing with Buffy and Damon at the Grill on the dresser inside Buffy's closet. She shook her head. "Honestly, Elena, I don't get you two as a couple."

"Well why would you?" Elena shot back. "You don't know anything about who he really is."

"I know exactly who he is. He's a vampire. We're a predatory species. We don't have time to care about humans and their silly little lives."

Buffy smirked. "Is that why you did that runway show earlier? Cause you don't care about the homecoming dance?"

"Don't even get me started on your relationship with Damon."

Buffy laughed slightly. "Go ahead."

"You're a Vampire Slayer in love with a vampire. You're sworn to kill my kind, yet you're shacking up and making friends with them instead of killing them. Angel, Spike, Lexi, Stefan, Caroline, Damon…. Your Watcher must be so disappointed."

Buffy growled and Rebekah was suddenly pinned to a wall, clothes falling off the racks around her. "Don't you ever talk about him again. Giles was a father to me. He was proud to be my Watcher. And your brother had him killed just to distract me."

Rebekah didn't fight Buffy. She just nodded. "Sorry."

Buffy let Rebekah go and walked out of the closet. "Whatever."

Rebekah followed her. "I didn't know Nic had him killed. And obviously he meant a lot to you."

"Why do you care?"

"Because honestly…. You're the closest thing to a friend I've got in this miserable place and even though I do purposely try to annoy you, I will admit that you're not half bad. Plus you have amazing fashion sense."

"Rebekah, please just continue the story."

The blonde vampire nodded. "The necklace wasn't Stefan's to give. It belonged to the Original Witch."

"The one who put the hybrid curse on Klaus?" Elena asked.

"Not just the hybrid curse. She's the one who turned us into vampires."

"Why?"

"She'd heard of beings…. Warrior women like werewolves, but they didn't change. They were fast and strong and immortal, but still like humans."

"Slayers?" Buffy asked incredulously. "Your kind of vampire was based on…. Slayers?"

"They weren't called that back then. They weren't called that until the Watcher's Council actually formed about 100 years later. My father and mother asked Ayana to call on the spirits to tell them how to make us like them. To protect us." Rebekah paused. "I'm thirsty. Do you want a drink?"

"I think I might need one." Buffy turned and walked out.

Rebekah and Elena followed. "So your type of vampirism was a form of protection?" Elena asked.

"What else would it be?" Rebekah asked.

"A curse."

"My parents only saw a way of keeping their children alive."

"Yeah, but…. Why stay? If they were so afraid of the werewolves, why not leave?"

"Pride. My father didn't want to run anymore. He wanted to fight and be superior to the wolves. Where they could bite, we had to bite harder. Where they had speed, we had to be faster. Agility…. Strength…. Senses."

"So Ayana did a spell to turn you into vampires?"

"Not Ayana. She refused to do the spell. So my father turned to my mother. He left it in her hands."

"In her hands? How could she do anything?"

"Because my mother was also a witch."

"What?"

"The witch of the Original family. The Original witch." Rebekah walked into the library behind Buffy. "Where do they keep their best vintage?" Buffy sighed and went over to the liquor cabinet. She pulled out one of the bottles, not even caring what it was, and poured some in a glass.

Elena walked over to Rebekah. "But if your mother was a witch, then…."

"Am I? No. A witch is nature's servant. A vampire is an abomination of nature. You can either be one or the other. Never bother. My mother did this for us. She did not turn."

"How did you turn?"

"She called upon the sun for life and the ancient white oak tree…. One of nature's eternal objects…. For immortality. That night, our father offered us wine laced with blood…. And then he drove his sword through our hearts."

"He killed you?"

"And he wasn't delicate about it either. When Nic and I woke up, there was blood everywhere. Our blood. We were confused, but then our father walked in with one of the village girls. He said that we must finish what they'd started. He shoved the girl down and cut her arm open. We had to drink more blood to complete the ritual. Nic tried to fight our father, but he wasn't strong enough. My father forced my mouth to the girl's wound and I had my first real taste of blood. It was euphoric. The feeling of power was indescribable. But the witch Ayana was right about the consequences. The spirits turned on us and nature fought back. For every strength, there would be a weakness. The sun became our enemy. It kept us indoors for weeks. And though my mother found a solution, there were other problems. Neighbors who had opened their homes to us could now keep us out. The flowers at the base of the white oak burned and prevented compulsion. And the spell decreed that the tree that gave us life could also take it away. So we burned it to the ground. But the darkest consequence was something my parents never anticipated."

"Instead of making you like Slayers, they made you like what Slayers hunted." Buffy said.

"Yes. To punish us for what we'd done."

"Nature's funny like that."

"Blood had made us reborn and it was blood that we craved above all else. We could not control it. The new predatory species was born."

Buffy stood up. "I need to check on Damon and Stefan." She set her drink down and walked out.

Damon answered on the third ring. "Hi honey."

"Please tell me you're coming home soon."

"What's wrong?"

"Information overload. I'm getting a headache."

"Have you learned anything?"

"Yes. And no. I do know that you're based on me."

"You stopped making sense."

"I'll tell you when you get home."

"I'll wrap this up soon."

"Thank you."

"Hey."

"Yeah?"

"I love you."

Buffy smiled. "I love you too." She hung up and walked back into the library. "So why did Mikael start hunting Klaus?"

"When Nic made his first human kill, it triggered his werewolf gene. With that, he became my father's greatest shame."

"Yeah. Elijah told me this part of the story." Elena said. "Your mother had had an affair with one of the werewolf villagers. Klaus wasn't his son."

"She tried to make it right. She put the hybrid curse on Nic to suppress his werewolf side and then she turned her back on him. But Mikael's greatest weakness as a human was his pride. As a vampire, that was magnified. He went on a rampage and killed half the village. Then he came home and killed her."

"Mikael killed your mother?"

"He said she broke his heart, so he would break hers. He tore it from her chest as Nic watched. Afterwards, my father took off in a rage and the rest of my family scattered. Nic stayed so he could help me bury her. He knew I had to say goodbye to my mother. Elijah came back and we made a pact. We would stick together…. Always and forever."

Buffy snorted. "Always and forever. So what happened to that when he locked you in a coffin for 90 years?"

"We're vampires. Our emotions are heightened. I'm stubborn. Elijah moral. And Nic…. Nic has no tolerance for those who disappoint him. Over a thousand years as a family, we've all made that mistake at least once. I've made it several times."

"But you still love him?" Elena asked.

"He's my brother. And I'm immortal. Should I spend an eternity alone instead?" Rebekah seemed to panic a little bit. "The story's over. I think it's time for you to leave."

"Uh, my house." Buffy said, standing up.

"I don't know what you're up to, but I am no longer playing along."

"I'm just looking for one good reason for why we shouldn't wake Mikael."

"And I've given you a thousand! But you will anyway. I know you want him to help you kill my brother. I'm not stupid."

"It's no secret that I want Klaus dead. Elena and I both do. He killed my Watcher. He has a hold over Stefan's life. And over Elena's. And over mine."

"Do what you need. Wake Mikael at your own peril. But make no mistake, if you come after my brother I will tear you apart. And I get my temper from my father."

Buffy rolled her eyes. "Is that how you speak to all your friends?" She looked at Elena. "Come on. Let's get you home."

Buffy walked into the cave and found Alaric, Angel, and Bonnie there. She'd dropped Elena off at home and called Alaric to see where he was at on the cave drawings. Angel heard her and turned around. "Hey."

"Hey. What's everybody doing down here?" Buffy asked, walking up to him at the entrance to the cave.

"Labeling everything and making sure nothing was missed. How'd it go with Rebekah?"

"She told us everything. Mikael is her father. And, oh yeah, her type of vampire is based on Slayers."

"What?"

"Yeah. Her mother is the Original Witch and she'd heard stories about Slayers. She turned her family into vampires on accident. It was Nature's way of punishing her for the spell."

"Wow."

"Hey, Buffy!" Alaric called.

"Hey, Rick. Bonnie." Buffy stepped past Angel and into the cave. "How's it going down here?"

"We, uh…. We filled in what we could. We got vampire, werewolf, slaughter, mayhem, etcetera, etcetera…."

Buffy walked over to a wall and touched a drawing of a tree. "That's the white oak tree used in the spell to create the vampires. Which means," She moved to a drawing of a tree and fire below it. "That was when they burned down the tree and destroying the only way that they could be killed."

"Ok, so tree equals weapon. Sort of…. But we already knew that." Alaric shined his flashlight beam on a drawing of a woman holding the symbol on Elena's necklace over her head and a heart drawn on her chest. Next to it were the symbols for vampire and werewolf combined together and an upside down person next to that. "What we're not sure about is this. We've got the witch symbol and what looks like a bleeding heart. Upside down figures usually signify death of some kind."

"Mikael killed the witch by ripping out her heart. But why is that one connected to the witch's death?"

"I don't know." Bonnie said. "We haven't gotten that far."

"Figures."

"Hey!"

"Not you. Sorry. No…. I just realized something."

"What?" Alaric asked.

"Rebekah doesn't know the real story."

"What are you talking about?"

"That's the symbol for hybrid. Mikael didn't kill the Original Witch. Klaus did. Klaus killed their mother." She looked at Alaric and took some of the pictures of the figures off the table. "I think I can get an Original on our side."

"By telling her?" Angel asked. "She'll probably just kill you for even suggesting it."

Buffy shook her head. "No. I think she'll believe it. She said it herself that Klaus doesn't tolerate those who disappoint him. Their mother cursed him and turned her back on him. That's got to be disappointing as hell." She headed for the cave entrance.

"I'm coming with you." Angel said.

"I'll be fine."

"I'd feel better if you had backup."

Buffy sighed. "Fine."

Buffy and Angel walked in the door and found Rebekah pouring herself a glass. "Back so soon?" She asked. "And with your pet vampire. Won't Damon be jealous?"

"How do you know that Mikael killed you mother?" Buffy asked, ignoring the comment.

"Nic was there. He told me."

"Do you always believe what your brother tells you?"

"What are you talking about?"

"The cave where you carved your family's names is covered in symbols." Rebekah noticed the photographs Buffy was holding. Buffy started to lay the pictures down. "The story of your family…. How your parents arrived…. How they made peace…. The spell that turned them into vampires…. And this." Buffy laid down the picture of the werewolf and vampire symbols intertwined. "This is the symbol for hybrid. It's a combination of the werewolf and the vampire symbol. And this is the one for your mother." She laid down the circle symbol.

"Her necklace…."

Buffy glanced at Angel as she laid the last photograph down. "And this is the story of her death. The hybrid killed the Original Witch. Not Mikael. Klaus."

"No." Rebekah shook her head angrily. "No he wouldn't."

"She put the curse on him so that he would be the only one of his kind and then she rejected him. With the werewolf gene comes aggression and violence. When he turned, all of that was heightened. He killed her. He killed your mother. And then made up this lie about your father so that he wouldn't lose you."

Rebekah exploded. "These mean nothing! They're just stupid drawings!" She picked up the photographs and threw them into the fire in the fireplace. "They're done by stupid people who had no idea who my family was!"

Buffy crossed her arms. "Then why are you so upset?"

"Why are you doing this to me? I've done nothing to you! I've called you a friend!"

"And friends always tell the truth. Klaus killed your mother. He has a hold on you. On me…. On Elena….. On everyone! He has for a thousand years. We have to make it stop."

Rebekah clapped her hands to her ears and her face changed. "Shut up! Shut up! Shut up! Don't talk anymore!" She started to attack, but Buffy held her back. Angel moved to step in, but Buffy shook her head at him. "I'm sorry, Rebekah. I know what it's like to lose your mother so suddenly to something so senseless." Rebekah's anger started to crack. She closed her eyes and a sob escaped from her mouth as tears started to fall. Buffy hesitated a moment before wrapping her arms around Rebekah. The vampire started to sob into Buffy's shoulder as she hugged her back. "I'm sorry."

Later that night, Buffy slipped into Damon's bed and laid her head on his pillow. She was exhausted from all the emotional drama of Rebekah's story. After crying for what seemed like hours, Rebekah had retreated up to her room, thanking Buffy for her kindness towards her. Angel had gone back to check on Alaric and Buffy had decided to go to bed.

The bed shifted and a cool arm wrapped around her waist. "Hi, sweetheart." Damon whispered in her ear.

Buffy smiled. "Hi."

"We got Mikael."

"What? How?"

"No idea. I guess Katherine came through. The plan's in motion."

"Wow." Buffy turned around in his grasp and ran her hand up his chest and neck to tangle in his hair. "What about Stefan?" She started kissing his chest and neck where she could reach.

"I know you're probably pissed at me for breaking him out of jail, and Elena is probably seething, but you know what? It backfired. He's an even bigger dick than ever. It's just that he's a dick that's on our side."

"Did Mikael mention anything about a weapon?"

"I think it's a stake."

Buffy nipped at his ear before saying, "It was probably carved from the white oak tree before they burned it down."

Damon made an almost purring sound in his chest. "I was right, then. After all that, the wall led us to Mikael."

"It led us to more than just that." Buffy smiled as he rolled on top of her. "I think I got Rebekah on our side, too."

"Really?" He pulled back from her neck to look at her. "How?"

"She's just a girl who lost her mom too young. I can relate." Buffy ran her hand down Damon's cheek. "And she loves blindly and recklessly, even if it consumes her."

"Can you relate?"

"Yes." She gently wrapped her arms around his neck. "You know, when all is said and done, there's nothing more important than the bond of family."

Damon smiled. "You should tell that to my brother."

Buffy's face turned serious. "I think you'll be the one to save him from himself."

"Why do you think that?"

"Because he loves you more than anything." Buffy rolled them over so she was on top. "I'll tell you the rest tomorrow."

"I missed you today." Damon said, playing with her hair.

"I missed you, too."

He pulled her down to him as she pulled the covers over their heads.

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