Title: Questions of the Soul
Sequel to: Obstacles of the Soul
Characters/Pairings: Chloe/Jeremy, Bonnie, Elena, Caroline, Tyler, (past Katherine, Thaddeus, Evelyn, Damon)
Summary: Jeremy is overcoming his addiction, and they are steadily growing closer...but Chloe is beginning to remember things about Thaddeus that shock her, confuse her, and make her wonder about Katherine's part in his life.
A/N: Happy Birthday Virgogirl1979!!!!!
The phone rang loudly and annoyingly in the house, and dressed in only a towel, hair wet and sticking to her face, Chloe rushed as she made the trip from her bathroom to it. Zach was out, as he usually was, and she had the sneaking suspicion that she didn't have enough time to get ready before Jeremy decided to just climb into her bedroom again, much less talk to whoever was on the other side of the phone. "Hello? Salvatore Boarding Home. How may I help you?"
There was a pause, and then a click as someone hung up.
She frowned, eyeing the receiver before putting it back down and was about to go back when it rung again.
Annoyed, the blonde picked it up. "Listen, if this is some pervert who gets off on breathing heavily while on the phone with terrified teenaged girls then find someone else to bother because I will find a way to trace this back to you and when I do I'll-!"
"Uh, no." An unfamiliar voice cleared itself. "This is, uh, Lucas Luthor."
Chloe's eyes widened in shock, finally. "Stef?"
There was a pause, and then a whispered: "What did you call me?"
Her eyes widened and she brought her hand to her face, wondering why in the world it'd felt so natural to say that. "Uh, Zach isn't here. He went to see Sheriff Forbes. I'd tell you to call him on his cell except, as you know, for some reason he just doesn't like them." She pulled a wet strand of hair out of her face. "I never got the opportunity to say this to you in person, but thank you for all that you've done to help me. Lex-Mr. Luthor-uh-told me-you know what? Just thank you. I can't mess that one up." She looked up at the ceiling, realizing she was just rambling embarrassingly. "Would you like me to give Zach a message whenever he gets back?"
There was silence, and then Stefan/Lucas cleared his throat. "I was just calling to see how my uncle was doing. I will call him back later."
"Okay then, I'll let him know you called." Chloe nodded although she knew he couldn't see her. "Have a good night, uh, Mr. Luthor." And with that she hung up. "That wasn't awkward at all." She brought her palm to her face and groaned. "Why the hell did I call him Stef? He clearly said Lucas Luthor! And even if he'd introduced himself as Stefan Salvator it is still so awkward for me to be calling him in that familiar way! How embarrassing."
Hearing something crash from upstairs, Chloe groaned, realizing Jeremy must have arrived. Now that he knew it was possible to get in through her bedroom window he was never going to use the front door unless Zach was most definitely home, she could already see this. Rolling her eyes in amusement the blonde forgot about her awkward conversation with Lucas Luthor/Stefan Salvatore/Vampire, and hurried to her room, finding Jeremy sitting on her bed, a couple of her magazines spread in front of him.
"Seriously?" He chuckled, picking up one that proudly stated Brad Pitt and Jennifer Anniston were screwing around together behind Angelina's back and planning to adopt some kids of their own.
"It gets boring here." Chloe defended herself, grabbing the magazine from him with a pout, putting it on her night table. "You're early."
"Not that early." He replied, laying down on her bed and picking up the magazine that declared that Madonna was actually an alien who'd come to earth to get us used to her species' oddness, and that Gaga was her daughter.
"You're two hours early." Chloe reminded, hugging her towel to her body tighter. "I'm in a towel. My hair is wet. I'm not even close to being remotely ready."
"I know." He replied, opening up the magazine to a random page and bringing it up to cover his view of her. "Thus the magazine."
"They're my magazines." She pointed out.
"I knew you had them." He countered, turning the page.
Realizing she wasn't going to win this one, Chloe sighed and sent him a quick look before turning her back on the teenaged boy, going to her underwear drawer and digging inside and pulling out a lacy, blood-red pair. With her gaze on the mirror in front of her, she kept an eye on Jeremy as she dropped the towel, the wet material sliding down to rest around her feet. Blushing, she slipped into her underwear and bra, both admiring and a little perturbed when Jeremy didn't even try to sneak a peak. While she probably would have kicked him out if he had, it hurt her female sensibilities due to his lack of effort to spy on her merchandise.
Shaking her head, she bent to pick up her towel and brought it to her head as she rubbed her hair roughly, drying it. Whipping her hair back she straightened and shook her head running her fingers through the messy locks and staring at her reflection in the mirror, making up her face. Her hair was growing longer than she'd ever really had it, and part of her wanted to grab a scissors and chop it back down to the tomboyish style she'd always enjoyed up until now...but then another part of her wondered how much it was of her that liked the shorter hair, and how much of it was Thaddeus's (she was deciding to refer to him as Thaddeus until she had more information on Thackery) preference. That alone made her pause, and consider finally letting her hair grow longer.
Suddenly her reflection blurred, and instead of her own face she saw Thaddeus', as if he were leaning forwards and gazing intently at his own reflection. There were shadows in his eyes, his features pinched, his face pale. It was obvious that he was disturbed by something extremely troubling. He brought his hand to his reflection and took in a deep breath before closing his eyes deeply, bringing his other hand to his chest.
"Mirror mirror on the wall," Katherine's voice was a deep, sultry amused tone. "Who's the fairest of them all?"
He tensed before turning towards her. "What do you want, Katherine? Do you have no sense of propriety?"
"Which question do you want me to answer first?" She teased, dressed in what was obviously her nightgown, her eyes dark and seductive in the dimness of his room. "Or do you want me to use my mouth for more...pleasurable...pastimes?"
Instead of seeming seduced, Thaddeus was obviously annoyed as he glared at her. "I might be your partner in our little scheme, but don't believe that that extends to any other aspect of our lives."
"Ouch." She laughed, sitting down on his bed and leaning back, positioning herself in a way that accentuated her figure in the near transparent frock. "I see the news that Evelyn Gilbert is being courted by Roland Fell has you in a state."
"I assure you that that has nothing to do with my foul mood." Thaddeus nearly snarled, eyes narrowing seemingly dangerously. "Long have I told her that her attentions towards me were fruitless ambitions and for her to set her sights on someone else more fitting."
"And if you weren't worried about Klaus finding you and killing anyone you might love or hold dear?" Katherine was too sly and observant. "Would you have been so standoffish and discouraging to young Miss Gilbert's obvious designs on your person?"
"It matters not what could have been but what is." He informed her, frustration obviously mounting. "And if you have come here to my personal quarters to taunt me or something of the sort I beseech you to leave immediately."
"You're too tense, Thaddeus." Katherine smirked, laying down on the bed, propped up solely by her elbows, gaze inviting. "Let me help you with that."
"Stefan and Damon not enough to sate your desire?" He sneered.
Katherine shrugged. "They're both wonderful lovers but they...they lack that roughness I need from time to time." She made a face, playing with the strings that kept the front of her gown closed. "Being treated like porcelain is nice, but sometimes I just want to be hurt just a little, and lets face it, neither of them are up to the challenge."
"Get out." Thaddeus growled.
She smiled. "Make me."
"Contrary to what you might believe, Katherine, I have no interest in you." He slowly stalked towards the bed. "I know it must be hard for you to understand since almost every single man in this little town seem to be under your little enchantment, but let me tell you that you are far from the first vampire I have known and I've lost my awe or interest in your kind."
"Believe me, Thaddeus, my charm isn't just in my ability to compel people." She grinned, gazing up at him through her eyelashes. "You should try me."
The tall blonde didn't say anything, only stalked further to the bed, eyes dark as he loomed over the smugly smiling vampire, grabbing her and pulling her closer for a kiss that was harsh and condemning. Katherine moaned into the kiss, happily allowing him to lower her to the bed as she arched in his hold, running her hands through his hair as he kissed her unlike any kiss Chloe had ever witnessed. Hands moved harshly, lips were brutal, his body pinned the vampire to the bed. And then Thaddeus tore his lips from Katherine's, her complaint upon her breath right before he bit down on her neck with his own blunt teeth, surprisingly enough breaking skin with the force behind the bite.
Katherine's eyes flew open in shock as she cried out in pain. She then closed her eyes and grabbed hold of him tighter, bucking under him wantonly, hands going to his trousers nearly desperately.
And yet Thaddeus pulled away and wiped at his bloody mouth. He reached for the vampire and yanked her off of the bed to her feet, and began dragging her towards his door.
"What are you doing?" Katherine snapped, fighting against his hold.
"You said I should try you and so I did." He grabbed the handle of his door and opened it, turning to her. "Now be so kind as to return to the Salvatore's home and back to your own room, or to Damon's or Stefan's." His eyes darkened as he yanked her towards him. "But don't you ever come back here."
Katherine's eyes flashed. "Do you really think that little girl could satisfy you better than I could? Do you really think she's any competition for me?"
Thaddeus' eyes narrowed and he slammed the door before grabbing Katherine and slamming her against it, pinning her there with his own body, eyes dangerous. "Do not even think about it."
"I don't know what you're referring to." Katherine sneered, chin raised, struggling.
He pressed himself harder against her. "I know what you do to those you find competition, Katherine Pierce. The town may not know about your part in Rosalyn Cartwright's death, but do not think that I am as naive as Stefan was concerning what you're capable of when it comes to disposing of competition."
She glared up at him. "Klaus will kill her if he finds you and knows you care for her."
"Damon and Stefan run the same risk." And it irked him but he knew he couldn't do anything about it. "Now leave, I have no desire to see you now."
His eyes narrowed. "If I hear you've gone close to Miss Gilbert, or if anything should befall her, even something as trivial as a cold, I will make you wish you'd never been turned."
"Fine." Katherine growled. "Keep your silly little girl."
"She's not mine." Thaddeus let Katherine go and took some steps back. "But she has my protection. May that knowledge stay heavily on your mind and keep you from acting impetuously or in any manner that will force me to end our agreement and partnership."
"Ooooh. I'm so scared." She snorted, but there was something in the way she acted that betrayed that she wouldn't do anything against Evelyn. "You're a fool." And with that she grabbed the door and opened it before storming out.
Going towards the doors, closing it, Thaddeus closed his eyes and sighed.
Chloe watched him, able to seeing the frustration and sadness in him, and was about to go and rest her hand against his shoulder when she felt an arm around her and suddenly she was swung around, facing a worried Jeremy.
"What happened? Are you okay?" Jeremy looked down at her worriedly. "I was talking to you and you weren't answering and then...it was as if you were in a trance."
Chloe felt her world swirling around her, and she didn't realize she was falling until Jeremy caught her.
She clung onto him tightly, disoriented. "Did you see it?"
"See what? You nearly fainting? Yes!" Jeremy picked her up in his arms, gazing down into her face. "I need to get you to the hospital."
"No, I'm fine." Chloe shook her head, closing her eyes tightly. "You didn't see anything in the mirror?"
"In the mirror?" He turned to look at it in confusion. "What did you see?"
It warmed her that he didn't doubt for a moment that she'd seen something, that it didn't seem to cross his mind that she could be insane. "I kissed her, but it was a punishment, I was angry at her and myself and you and Fell."
"Huh?" Jeremy adjusted her in his arms as he made his way to the bed and laid her down tenderly, covering her body with the sheet as he sat on the edge and looked down at her. "Explain this a little better to me."
She did, explaining it as best as she could without mentioning the world 'vampire', which turned out to be incredibly easy.
"Jesus." Jeremy frowned. "This Katherine sounds like a piece of work. She killed someone?"
"The woman she killed was the fiance of one of the men she was interested in." Chloe didn't know how she knew that detail, she just did. "So Thaddeus warned her off of Evelyn, because he knew that while Katherine wasn't in love with him her wounded pride might make her act out."
"I wonder who this Klaus guy is." Jeremy made a face. "I've gone over some of Jonathan Gilbert's journals but so far I haven't heard any mention of anyone named Klaus. But then again I'm still on his earliest works, when Evelyn was still only a child. I don't want to overlook anything just incase there might be something there."
Chloe nodded. "That's a good idea."
"How are you feeling?" He asked, placing his hand over her forehead. "You're a little warm."
"I'm fine." She sent him a small smile. "I don't think I'll do my hair though. So you'll have to go out with me looking messy."
"No." He shook his head, pressing his hand down on her shoulder and keeping her against the cushion. "I'll order us some pizza and we'll stay in tonight."
"But I promised you we'd go see that movie." Chloe frowned. "And I'm fine! I-."
"No." Jeremy shook his head. "There will be other movies. Just lay down and let me take care of you, okay?
"But I'm fine." Chloe sat up straighter, hugging the sheet to her chest.
"Let me take care of you dammit." He snapped, gaze on his hands. "I know you pride yourself on not depending on anyone, but for just this once, let me take care of you."
Her heart fluttered at that, and she gulped, reaching out and placing her hand on his clenched one. "Okay. Thank you."
He looked up at her in shock, obviously not having expected her to give in that easily, and he grinned the most beautiful smile she'd ever seen. "So what topping with your pizza? Pineapples?"
She made a face. "Mushrooms."
He made a face. "Half mushrooms and half pineapple then."
She grinned, nodding, leaning, getting more comfortable. "And some Coke. And cinnamon sticks."
"And some of those chicken thingies." Jeremy agreed, grinning brightly as he reached into his pocket, pulling out his phone and dialing the number for the nearest pizza place.
"The buffalo wings?" Chloe made up her face.
"No." Jeremy snorted. "Those boneless chicken things." He then raised his hand for silence as he stood and started ordering as he went towards the window.
Chloe watched him with a soft smile, before ducking her head and telling herself the blush on her face was due to her slight fever.
Shaking her head she slipped out of the bed and headed to her drawers while his back was to her, grabbing an old nightgown and slipping it on over her underwear. She eyed her reflection once more, wondering for a moment if Thaddeus would return, but he didn't, and by the time Jeremy finished ordering their food she was by the dvd player, looking over the dvds she'd accumulated while in Mystic Falls. "So, are we feeling like a classics night?"
"Don't think I'm feeling for black and white tonight." Jeremy replied, sitting next to her on the ground, eyeing the selection before grinning and pulling one out with a grin. "This one."
Chloe snorted in amusement at the cover of DRACULA: DEAD AND LOVING IT!
"Is this a Mel Brooks' night again?" She fingered the cover for HISTORY OF THE WORLD: PART ONE.
"Only as long as we finish the night off with a real classic." Jeremy reached for SPACEBALLS.
She smiled at the happy-little-boy expression on his face. "Thank you."
He looked up at her in confusion. "For what?"
"For being you." She responded, sighing as she leaned her head against his shoulder.
He hesitated before placing an arm around her. "Who else would I be?"
She chuckled softly at that, closing her eyes.
Who else indeed.