The Next Chapter

Chapter 62

A/N We're baaaaaack! I tried to get this out fast for you guys. Hope you like it. Remember, I LOVE reviews!

Chapter 62

Buffy sat by Elena's bed watching over her as she stroked the teen's hair. She hadn't stopped crying since she'd found out Elena's fate back at the hospital. She'd wanted Elena to wake up completely in a safe place, so she'd taken Elena home. Stefan had explained everything in the car and Damon had had to pull over when Buffy had tried to rip Stefan's head off. Angel, Spike, and Damon had worked fiercely to get Buffy out of the car and away from Stefan. Luckily for them she'd had her seat belt on and had seemed to forget that fact when she tried to jump in the back seat. It had restrained her just long enough for the other vampires to get a hold of her. Stefan had traded places with Angel to ride with Spike while Angel rode in the car with Buffy, Damon, and Elena.

Angel and Spike were downstairs with Jeremy at the moment. Dawn and Willow had gone to the boarding house to get some things for Buffy. Buffy had told them to get some shut eye while they were there since none of them had gotten any sleep in the last 24 hours. Downstairs, she could hear them moving around and talking. Jeremy was miserable. He was sitting at the table, probably staring angrily at the wooden top, while Spike and Angel paced behind him.

Spike wanted to call in "the witches" to see if there was a way to reverse what had happened to Elena. Angel agreed and then lowered his voice, thinking Buffy couldn't hear him if he did that, and said, "Maybe if they could find a reversal to Elena's transformation…. Maybe it could work for Buffy too. With Klaus gone, she…. She doesn't need to be a vampire anymore. Since they're based on a spell, then maybe that spell can be broken somehow…. Without her dying." Angel had said.

Buffy had to roll her eyes at him.

Damon sat on a chair behind her. Every now and then he would reach out and touch her back or play with her hair. Buffy sighed and looked at Elena, waiting for her to wake up. Stefan sat on the other side of the bed, but Buffy growled at him every time he tried to touch Elena.

This was his fault. He could've saved Elena and Matt. There shouldn't have been a choice. Instead of arguing with Elena, he could've acted. He could've saved them both. Or he could've not listened and saved Elena instead. Sure, she'd be pissed for a while, but at least she'd still be alive. At least she wouldn't be in transition. At least she wouldn't have had her life taken away from her by becoming a vampire!

Just then Elena gasped and sat up. Buffy caught her in her arms, knocking Stefan backwards off the bed. She held tightly to Elena and Elena clung to her out of instinct. Buffy stroked Elena's hair and whispered soothing words to her until she calmed down.

"B…. Buffy?" Elena gasped.

"Shh…. I'm here." Buffy said, still holding Elena. Behind her, Damon had stood up and moved closer to Buffy. Stefan was picking himself up off the floor and Angel and Spike suddenly stood in the doorway.

Elena stayed buried in Buffy's long blonde hair. "What…."

"It's ok. You've been in and out for hours."

"Wha…. What happened?" Elena moved out of Buffy's hair, but stayed grasping to her arms.

"Shh…. You were…. in an accident." Buffy watched as the memory came back to Elena.

"Oh my god! Matt…. Is he…."

"Alive?" Damon finished, glaring at his brother. "Ask Stefan. The hero."

Elena looked at Damon first and then at Stefan. Stefan sighed, "He's fine."

"Thank you." Elena looked at Buffy. "I thought that I…." Buffy looked away and Elena looked at Stefan. "How did you…."

"Save you?" Damon finished again. "He didn't."

Buffy began stroking Elena's hair again, trying to keep Elena calm. "Shh…. When Jeremy brought you to the hospital…. Before…. Your injuries were worse than anyone knew." Elena reached up and took one of Buffy's hands, grasping it tightly. Buffy looked down at their clasped hands, tears springing to her eyes again as she continued. "Meredith Fell…. She made…. A choice…. She…."

"She used my blood to heal you." Damon said, stepping closer and placing his hand on Buffy's back. He took over the explanation since Buffy was starting to cry again. "And when Rebekah ran Matt's truck off the road, you had vampire blood in your system, Elena."

"Oh my god…." Elena began to panic.

"Shh…." Buffy tried to soothe her.

"Does that mean that I…. Am I dead?!" Buffy closed her eyes and hung her head. She worked incredibly hard not to attack Stefan in front of Elena. She was not going to lose control of her emotions in front of Elena. Not now. Elena needed to have a strong role model and no one else but Buffy would fill those shoes. "No! No, no, no…. That wasn't supposed to happen!"

"Maybe it doesn't have to." Stefan said. "I talked to Bonnie…. She said she's stronger than ever. There might be something she can do to help you."

Buffy growled and her eyes started to change, but Damon was there behind her, placing his hands on her shoulders. "No. The only thing that's going to help is for you to feed and complete the transition." He said.

"We have all day before she has to feed, Damon! That's a day to exhaust every possible way out of this."

"There is no way out of it! We all know the drill. You feed or you die. There is no door number three."

"I was ready to die." Elena said. Buffy looked up at her and her heart broke at the pain and fear in Elena's voice. "I was supposed to die! I don't…. I don't wanna be…. I can't be a vampire!"

"Shh…." Buffy soothed.

"If there's something that Bonnie can do, we have to try."

Buffy glanced at Damon and knew that he wasn't happy with that plan. It was gambling with Elena's life, but all Buffy wanted for Elena was for her to be happy and ok. "Ok. If that's what you want." Elena nodded frantically. Damon sighed and walked out, pushing past Spike and Angel.

Stefan glanced at Buffy and Elena and followed Damon. Elena started to cry and Buffy pulled her to her, holding her close as she cried too. Angel and Spike stayed in the doorway. "Is there anything we can do, love?" Spike asked.

"Go to Willow and let her know what's going on." Buffy said. "Tell her I know it's a long shot, but long shots are what we're good at."

"I'll go." Angel said. "Spike's stuck in the house since he doesn't have a daylight ring."

"Now's really not the time to act like petty little kids." Buffy growled. Angel nodded, chastised, and walked out.

"Ponce." Spike muttered. He moved closer to Buffy and took Damon's vacated seat.

"Are you angry?" Elena asked, still buried in Buffy's hair against her shoulder.

"I'm very angry." Buffy said.

Elena sat up. "Why?"

"Because this isn't what you wanted, Elena. You didn't choose this."

"We'll fix it."

Buffy looked down at her hands. "I don't think we will. Damon's right. If we could, Alaric wouldn't be gone."

"That took us by surprise."

"Yes, it did, but so did…."

"We've got time, Buffy. 24 hours."

"I want to be optimistic. I do…. But…. I can't." Buffy stood up. "I'm going to let Jeremy know you're awake." She leaned down and kissed Elena's forehead before turning and walking out. Spike followed her, avoiding the sunlight. At the bottom of the stairs, she turned and looked at him. Spike nodded and just pulled her to him, holding her for a moment.

"I take it she's awake." Jeremy said from the couch. Buffy looked over at him as he stood up. "Damon and Stefan were arguing in the kitchen."

"Yeah." Buffy said, wiping at her tears. "She's up."

"Can I see her?"

"Yeah. Go ahead." Buffy moved out of the way and Jeremy headed upstairs.

Damon came out of the kitchen with a glass of bourbon. He handed it to her and she downed it in one gulp. "Are you ok?"

"I don't like this plan."

"Then give her blood and be done with it."

"I can't."

"Buffy, you know that this isn't going to work!"

"I know. But I can't deal with that fear in her eyes." Buffy paused and then was suddenly gone.

Damon sighed and went to the open study door. She was inside rummaging through her bag. Spike sat down on the stairs as Damon went into the study. "What are you doing, babe?"

Buffy stood up holding the indestructible white oak stake. "There is one thing that will make me feel a little bit better."

"Rebekah might be the sire of our bloodline."

"She's not. Klaus was. I'm not sure why we're not dead, but I am certain that Klaus was the sire of our bloodline."

"I've always trusted your instincts." He walked over and leaned against the desk, facing her. "I'll stay with Elena since you're not too keen on having Stefan around her. Not that I blame you."

"I want you to do it."


"I would love to shove this stake through that bitch's heart, but I won't leave Elena. Not again."

"Buff, I'm not as strong as you. You have the better chance. Besides, she'll be expecting this."

"Damon, if there is anyone that can do it, it's you. You're fast. You're smart. You're sexy."

"I can't argue." He smirked and was happy that Buffy actually smiled.

"She'll expect it to be me. She won't expect it to be you." Damon held his hand out and Buffy handed him the stake. "Thank you."

Damon stood up and pulled her to him. "I am so sorry this is happening."

"I am too." She tipped her head back and he leaned down to kiss her.

After a long moment, Damon pulled back and hid the stake in his boot. "Be back soon." He kissed her quickly and headed out.

"Jeremy just left." Spike said as Buffy came out of the study.

"Where did he go?" Buffy asked.

"To find Bonnie." Spike sighed when Buffy disappeared. "I hate it when she does that."

Upstairs, Buffy had heard a small explosion from Elena's room. The lampshade was on the floor and there were bits of broken light bulb strewn on the desk and floor. Elena was staring at her hand. "Are you ok?" Buffy asked.

"The light…. It was giving me a headache." Elena said.

Buffy nodded. "Heightened senses can be a bitch at first."

"And I'm so hungry."

"I know. That's the first thing I remember when I woke up is how hungry I was. I didn't get to take any blood in for a while."


"Things kept exploding in my hand. New strengths and all.""Will that happen to me?"

"I don't know. Maybe. Maybe not. I'm a special case." Buffy reached out and looped Elena's hair behind her ear. "Come on. I'll fix you a sandwich."

Elena took Buffy's hand and followed her downstairs. Stefan was standing at the back door staring outside. He turned and looked at them, but stayed where he was. Elena sat down at the island and watched Buffy work.

"How are you feeling?" Stefan asked.

"I'm…. Ok." Elena said. She turned to look at Stefan. "Why are you over there?"


"I won't kill you while she's in the room." Buffy said, her back still turned.

"Kill Stefan?" Elena asked. "I thought you two were friends again."

"Not at the moment." Stefan said. He cautiously moved closer to Elena, but stopped when Buffy turned around and handed Elena a turkey sandwich with cheese, mayo, lettuce, and tomato.

"Looks delicious." Elena said. She picked it up and took a small bite. Her face said it all.

Buffy smiled. "It's gross."

"No, it's…. Um…."

"You don't have to be nice. It's repulsive."

"Yeah. I'm going to puke!" Elena grabbed a napkin and spit the food out. Buffy discarded the napkin and turned back to Elena. Stefan was leaning against the counter closest to the back door. Buffy decided to ignore him and leaned down to rest her elbows on the island in front of Elena. "I never thought I'd be saying this, but I…. I can't stop thinking about blood."

"I should have saved you first." Stefan said. "You shouldn't be going through this right now." Buffy snorted her agreement.

"No. If you'd saved me…." Elena looked at Buffy. "If Stefan had saved me, then Matt would be dead. What do you guys think I'd be going through then?" Buffy looked at Elena and sighed. "Stefan did the right thing." She looked at Stefan. "You did what you always do. You respected my choice."

"What am I supposed to do if Bonnie and Willow can't figure out a way to help you?" Buffy snapped. "You've only got two choices. You either let yourself die or you finish your transition."

"Then we'll cross that bridge when we come to it." Elena chuckled. "Oh my god…. Did I just say 'cross that bridge'?" She started to full on laugh.

"You're laughing." Stefan said. "I'm pretty sure you don't actually think that's funny."

"I can't…. I can't stop, though."

"Your emotions are a bit heightened today." Stefan glanced at Buffy as Elena kept laughing.

"A lot heightened." Buffy said. Elena's laughter started to turn into sobbing and Buffy moved over to her, wrapping her arms around her. "Shh…." She started to cry with Elena. "It's ok."

Stefan gently touched Elena's hair and accidentally brushed Buffy's hand. Buffy looked up at him and couldn't sustain her anger at him any longer. She just needed her brother to hold her too. Stefan nodded and wrapped his arms around both girls as they cried.

"I'm sorry." Elena said.

"Shh…." Buffy pulled back and looked at Elena. "Listen, no matter what happens…. I'm here for you. We all are."

Elena nodded and moved back a little. The sun hit her in her face and she cringed. "Why don't you go back upstairs where it's dark?" Stefan suggested. "I'll clean up." Elena nodded again and headed upstairs.

Buffy looked up at Stefan. "I'm sorry."

Stefan shrugged. "It's ok. I understand. I would've attacked me too."

"I shouldn't have tried to kill you. I guess I'm still relatively new to this vampire thing, too."

Stefan pulled her to him and hugged her tightly. "We'll get through this."

Spike walked in. "Glad to see you two made up. Angel just called. He said Willow and Bonnie are going through their witch books now."

"Ok." Buffy said.

"And Dawn is headed back to New York."

"Wait, what!?"

"She said she needed to get back to school before she flunked out and if she told you she'd planned on doing it, you would've stopped her."

"Because she knows it's not safe!"

"Listen, pet, Dawn's a big girl. If she gets in trouble, she knows how to handle herself."

Buffy noticed that he had a blanket. "What are you doing?"

"I'm following Dawn to New York to make sure she doesn't get into trouble. Lucky for me, Angel left his car."

"You're stealing Angel's car?" Stefan asked.

"It has those nice windows that block the bad UVs." Spike shrugged. "Call me if you need me."

Buffy hugged Spike tightly and kissed his cheek. "Thanks for coming."

"Didn't do much. But you're welcome." Spike waved at Stefan and then dove out the back door under the cover of the blanket.

"I'm going to go check on Elena."

"Ok. I'll clean up." Stefan said.

Buffy walked out and just as she was about the turn to the stairs the front door burst open and men with guns walked in, pointing them at her. "They're wooden." A man in a priest outfit said. Behind her, Stefan was led in at gunpoint by more men.

"Buffy?" Elena asked, walking down the stairs.

"Don't move, Elena." Buffy warned. One of the men moved behind her and stabbed her in the back of the neck with a needle. The burning sensation of vervain water washed through her veins and she growled at the pain, her eyes changing and her fangs dropping. One of the men panicked and shot her twice in the stomach. The pain of the wooden bullet and the vervain water was too much and the world went dark.

When Buffy woke up, she almost immediately wished she hadn't. She was in a barn from the smell, lying on the floor of one of the stalls. Someone had turned the door of the stall into a prison cell door. The thing that sucked was the fans sitting behind bushels of vervain. It circulated the plant around the cell. It burned down her throat and up her nose and down into her lungs. It made her limbs feel heavy and useless. She let out a cough and sat up.

"Good. Someone I like to talk to."

Buffy looked at the cell across from her to find Rebekah. She was sitting up with a blood stained top. "Too bad I hate you, huh?" Buffy coughed again. She looked around and spotted Stefan lying in the cell next to Rebekah's. He was coughing and looked a lot worse off. "Stefan?"

"I'm ok." He said. "You?"

"I have to look at this bitch."

"It's not nice to call me names." Rebekah said.

Buffy tried to stand up, but the vervain made her feel weak. "Where are we?"

"I don't know." Stefan said.

"Stefan, you really don't look ok." Buffy coughed again.

"It's the vervain."

"Why isn't it affecting me as bad?"

"Because you're like me." Rebekah said. "You became a vampire to be like me, remember? Bet you're regretting that decision."

"And I'm regretting sending Damon to kill you. Should've just done it myself." Buffy's eyes widened. "Damon! Damon!" She called.

"He's not here. He ran off just before they got me."

Buffy let out a relieved sigh and regretted it when she sucked in more vervain air. Then she panicked again. "Where's Elena?""She's in the cell next to you." Stefan said. "She's unconscious."

"What did they do to her?"

"I don't know. They knocked me out with you."

"She wasn't in here the whole time." Rebekah said. "They just brought her in a few minutes ago." Buffy and Stefan exchanged worried looks, but Stefan's attention was suddenly on the cell next to Buffy. Elena must've moved. "Stefan?" Elena asked weakly.

"I'm here." Stefan said.


"I thought I killed you." Rebekah said.

"Where am I?" Elena asked.

"They thought you were a vampire so they stuck you in here with us."

"Where's Buffy?"

"I'm here." Buffy said. She leaned against the wall that connected her cell with Elena's. "Are you ok?""Buffy, I didn't feed." Her voice sounded so weak.

"Ah! I see what's going on here." Rebekah said. "You died with vampire blood in your system and you didn't feed and now you're locked up in here without a drop of human blood in sight. That is a problem."

"Just ignore the vapid bitch in cell two." Buffy said.

"Has anyone done the math, or shall I? I'd say you've got less than three hours to feed before I get to watch you die all over again. My day just got a whole lot better."

Buffy growled at Rebekah, but ended up coughing from the vervain. Elena started tugging on the door of her cell, but she wasn't strong enough to open it. "Save your strength, Elena." Buffy said.

Elena settled down and leaned against the wall. "Where's Damon?"

"He's not here. He got away."

"He'll find us."

Buffy smiled slightly. "Of course he will."

"What about Angel? And Spike?"

"I don't know. Angel was with Bonnie and Willow. Spike left just before we got taken."

"Why did the Council come after us?"

"Your stupid history teacher ratted all of us out to them." Rebekah said.

"Alaric was busy before he killed your brother." Buffy said. Rebekah just smirked, which made Buffy uneasy about her feeling that Klaus may not have actually died in that coffin. If that was true, he was going to be royally pissed at her and would probably come seeking revenge. Buffy sighed and started fiddling with her nails. The less she breathed, the better, so she tried to concentrate on other things. They were all silent for a long time. Buffy listened for Elena's breathing and every time she noticed it getting weaker or she heard a wheeze, her heart broke and the fear for Elena spiked.

"Elena?" Stefan asked.

Buffy looked over at Stefan, but he was looking at Elena. "What's wrong?" Buffy asked.

"Something's happening." Elena said.

"She's standing up, but it's like she's being…. Pulled." Stefan said. Elena gasped and there was a clang.

"Elena?" Buffy asked, panicked. "What happened?"

"I'm out of time." Elena said. "I need blood. I'm dying."

Stefan struggled to a standing position. "Hey! Anyone!? Hey!"

"Will you shut up!?" Rebekah said.

"You think we're afraid of you?"

"Stefan…." Buffy started. She was cut off by a man in a Kevlar vest walking in with his hand on his gun holster.

"You want more vervain?" The man demanded of Stefan. "Keep it down."

"Listen to me…." Stefan said. "Elena's gonna die if you don't let her out of here."

The man glanced back at Elena. "Sorry. Not my problem."

"She's innocent. Let her out." Buffy pleaded, pulling herself up. The man's attention was drawn to her and Buffy sped over closer to him. He panicked and shot her in the shoulder.

"Stop!" Elena begged.

Buffy growled at the man, but she didn't go down. She smirked and yanked at the bars, but the man shot her again. This time, he hit her in the hip and she did go down. "Won't be down here long."

"Your boyfriend will be here soon enough and then we'll take you out." The man said, marching out.

Buffy sighed. That was their plan. That was why they were still alive. And Rebekah was still alive to lure her siblings. She rolled her eyes and moved over to sit against the wall connecting her and Elena's cells. "You should pull those out." Rebekah said. "They'll heal wrong."

"Thanks." Buffy said. She gritted her teeth and dug the bullets out of her hip and shoulder. When she finished, she noticed Elena's breathing was weaker. "Elena?"

"Yeah…." Elena said. She sounded so distant. "I'm ok."

"No, you're not. I can hear your breathing. And Stefan looks beyond panicked."

"Damon was right." Stefan said. "You should've fed this morning. I'm so sorry."

"Don't be." Elena rasped. "You had hope. That's all I ever wanted you to have. And you had it."

"I love you so much."

"Do you know why I was even on that bridge? I was coming back for you, Stefan. Because I love you. No matter what happens…. It's the best choice I ever made. And Buffy?"

"Yeah?" Buffy asked, fighting the tears.

"Thank you so much for being the mother and friend and sister I needed."

Buffy turned and placed her hand on the wall. "Please don't talk like this."

"If I don't feed…."

"You will." Buffy made a choice. It was a choice that she would regret at some point in her eternal life, but right here and now…. She wasn't going to lose Elena. Buffy heard a car outside and knew it was Damon.


"I want her to die." Rebekah said.

"I don't care what you want. She needs to feed and I need your help."

"Why should I help you?"

There was a gunshot outside and Buffy fought hard not to panic. "Because we were friends once. And despite you trying to kill Elena…. You're not half bad."

Rebekah glared at her. "Key word…. Were friends. You sent your boyfriend to kill me."

"I was angry. I'll get over it if you help me just this once."

"What are you doing?" Stefan asked.

"Getting Elena some blood."

Two men entered with more vervain. They went further down the aisle to another cell and the man from before said, "I got this. Bring the other one in."

Buffy looked at Rebekah and pleaded with her eyes. Rebekah rolled her eyes. "Excuse me! Hello? Sir?" She started to cough.

"I thought I told you to shut up?"

"Here's the thing…. My family…. We have money…. Castles, apartments, jewelry…. Just name your price and let me out."

"I'd much rather watch you die."

Rebekah vamped and rushed at the bars of the cage. The man backpedaled straight into Buffy's waiting arms. "Buffy!" Stefan cried just as she bashed the man's head against the bars. Her strength was so great that it only took her one strike and the back of the man's head was gone, crushed, and blood oozed out. She dropped the body to the floor within reach of Elena.

"Elena!" Buffy called, banging her hand against the wall. "Wake up! Come on!" She moved to where she could see the man's head and a moment later, Elena's hand flopped out of the cage.

"Reach, baby." Stefan said. "Come on."Buffy couldn't take it anymore and she yanked at the iron bars, coughing the whole time, until they bent and then she yanked again and was suddenly free. She yanked Elena's cage open and moved her closer to the body. Elena groaned and sucked at the wound Buffy created in the man's wrist. Buffy yanked open Stefan and Rebekah's cages and then dashed out to find Damon. He was laying on the ground, unconscious, and two men were pointing guns at him. She growled and attacked. Damon popped up suddenly and took on one while Buffy yanked her man off his feet and into the air. Without thinking, letting the rage at these fools take her over, she pulled him to her and buried her teeth in his neck, ripping his throat out.

"Buffy." Damon said gently. Buffy dropped the dead man and turned to Damon. Her eyes changed back and she hugged him tightly. "Elena….?" He asked.

"She fed. She's ok." Buffy kissed him, not wanting to let him go. She eased up a little when she heard a groan behind her and turned to find Matt lying on the ground. That was the last person she wanted to see. Without thinking, the rage taking her over once again, she attacked Matt, hauling him off the ground by his neck. Suddenly Elena was there, pulling her away. Her fangs were out and her eyes had changed. It pained Buffy to see them and that helped the fury subside a little.

"Leave him alone!" She cried. Buffy took a deep breath as Elena told Matt to go see Stefan. "What is wrong with you? You were going to kill him!"

"Yeah." Buffy said.

"It's not his fault."

"I know that! It's yours. But it doesn't stop me from being pissed off that he gets to have a normal life while you're stuck as a vampire for the rest of eternity!"

"It was my choice to save him!" Elena switched tactics and calmed down. "If it had been you on that bridge and not Stefan…. And I begged you to save Matt…."

"I would've saved you, Elena."

"And Matt would be dead because you couldn't let go. Matt would be dead!"

"But you wouldn't be! You would have gotten to grow up. You would've had the life that you deserved. That is all I've ever wanted for you." Buffy grasped Elena's shoulders. "You are the closest thing to a daughter I will ever have. And when it comes to you, I will always be selfish. Always."

All the fight went out of Elena and she hugged Buffy tightly. They stood there for a long moment just holding each other. Buffy was so happy that Elena wasn't dead. She had been completely devastated when Alaric had died and she'd known exactly what that meant. But on the flip side, she was so sad that Elena had to live out her days as a vampire. It was a life she had never wanted and now it was forced on her.

"Let's get home." Damon said. "We've got a war to prepare for."

"War?" Elena asked.

"The Council. Alaric outted us and now they're out for our heads. We need a game plan."

"He's right." Buffy said.

"I'll go get Stefan and Matt." Elena rushed off using her newly acquired vampire speed.

Damon walked into his and Buffy's bedroom carrying two glasses of bourbon. She was sitting on the bed, curled up against the headboard, and reading on her Kindle. Elena was on the roof with Stefan. They'd been there most of the night. Angel was back in his old room since Spike had stolen his car. He'd spent the day hiding in the woods to keep away from the Council members when they'd raided the Salvatore house. Willow had called and said she was staying with Bonnie because Bonnie had been punished by the spirits for messing with dark magic to try and save Elena. Since Willow was the expert in visiting the dark side of the magic force, she was the only one who could help Bonnie deal.

"Here," Damon handed Buffy a glass and she took it without looking. He watched her for a minute, but she was as still as a statue. Only her eyes moved as she read. "Good book?"

"Mm." Was all she said. No movement.

"Are you ok?"

She read for another second before looking up at him. "Yes." And then she went back to reading. Damon sighed and sat down. He took the Kindle away from her and set it behind him. "Hey! I was on the last chapter of Mockingjay!"

"Buff, are you ok?"

"I'm fine. Why?"

"Well, you killed not one but two humans today. Your first human kills ever."

"I know."

"And you're ok with that?"

Buffy shrugged. "I'm not ok with killing innocent humans." From Damon's expression, she figured he was waiting for an elaboration. "Those people weren't innocent. They tossed us in animal stalls and tortured us with vervain. They were going to kill us. They were just going to let Elena die. They were animals."

"They were still human."

"Ok, maybe I shouldn't have ripped that second guy's throat out the way I did, but I'm still relatively new to this vampire thing. It's only been a few months. My emotions still get the best of me sometimes." She looked up at Damon. "Honestly…. It actually worries me more that killing those men doesn't bother me."

Damon smiled slightly. "You're a vampire, Buffy. Killing is in your nature. Letting your emotions run away with you can lead you to some fun places."

"Yeah, the last time I let them lead me to a fun place, I nearly killed you while we were having sex."

"I told you…. I enjoyed it." He reached out and gently held her face in his hands. "You can't suppress your vampire side. It'll drive you insane. You don't have to kill everyone you come across, but you really shouldn't feel bad for not feeling bad about ripping out a guy's throat when he was threatening you or someone you love. You just have to find your balance."

"We haven't exactly had time to work on that."

"We've been a little busy. Don't worry. We've got eternity to work on making you a good little vampire." He smirked and ran a hand up her leg. "And speaking of getting busy…." Damon pulled on her leg and she slid under him, laughing.

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