Title: Fragments of the SoulSeries: StarcrossedPairing: Chloe/JeremyRating: T-MDisclaimer: Don't ownSummary: When an encounter with a strange girl leaves Chloe unconscious, Bonnie and Jeremy unwittingly get caught up in the spell. Trapped in Chloe's mind, they are pulled through various memories of past lives Chloe and Jeremy have shared together, and view their tragic outcomes. The more Jeremy finds out, the more he realizes just how starcrossed he and Chloe truly are.
Warning: Non-graphic depiction of sex
"At least their hearts are still beating," Caroline muttered as she paced the floor and nibbled on her thumbnail.
Katherine gave a little half-shrug as she knelt over Chloe's body. Caroline was way too busy stressing to pay any attention as she bit into her thumb enough to draw blood, and smeared it on the inside of Chloe's mouth. With as much blood as she'd fed her today there wasn't need for much more, she was sure that with a few more feedings it would be ready, complete. She just needed to make sure that no one figured out what she was doing in time to stop her.
Then again, with the band of imbeciles Chloe surrounded herself with it wasn't really something she should worry about. The only one, in her books, who could pose some sort of a threat was Bonnie Bennett.
Tilting her head to the side, Katherine gazed at Bonnie and reached out to clasp her fingers around her neck. It would be so easy to just twist her wrist and snap Bonnie's neck. But that would ruin things. Everyone would know that she'd killed the witch, and she didn't need them turning on her.
A sigh of disappointment escaped her lips as she removed her hand from Bonnie's neck.
"I know this place."
"Really?" Bonnie looked around in confusion. "It seems familiar somehow, but I can't quite put my finger on why."
"It's because it's Mystic Falls." Jeremy's eyes were wide. Even though it was night he knew where this was. "Civil War Era Mystic Falls."
Bonnie's eyes widened. "Oh boy." She reached out and grabbed Jeremy's shoulder. "Look."
Jeremy turned in the direction where Bonnie was pointing and his eyes widened in shock. "Oh wow."
It was late at night, most of the lights were out in the buildings in the street, only a few street lanterns were actually lit. It was enough though to cast shadows on the couple in the dark alley across from Bonnie and Jeremy's location. The male was tall and had the petite woman pressed flush against the side of the building. Their lips met in a torrid kiss as her hands clawed at his back and his dug deep within her hair.
Jeremy's lips parted when he realized the real reason Bonnie had drawn his attention to the two.
It was Thaddeus… and Evelyn. Her skirt was bunched up around her hips and her legs wrapped around his thighs. They couldn't see exactly what was going on, but it was more than obvious.
Jeremy both wanted to smirk and blush. At least one version of him had gotten some action!
Bonnie covered her eyes. "Let me know when it's over."
Evelyn's face was flush with pleasure as she reached for Thaddeus and kissed him deeply to silence her cry, and then, not too long later, his own voice could be heard muffled in her mouth and it was over. But they held each other tightly and kissed as if they never wanted to let go of the other.
Something clenched in Jeremy's chest as he watched them.
Thaddeus eased Evelyn off of him and fixed the skirt of her dress around her feet. "I—I apologize, Miss Gilbert - I shouldn't have - just because we're affianced—!"
"Thaddeus, if you apologize I will hurt you." Evelyn was all smiles as she tried to fix her hair to no avail.
He smiled down at her tenderly. "I love you, Evelyn."
She turned to look at him in shock. "You hardly ever call me that, it's almost always Miss Gilbert." She raised her hand and pointed to an engagement ring. "And that is that you have given me this!"
He sighed and took her hand in his, gazing at the ring. "You should have so much better than what I can offer you."
Her smile disappeared. "I love you, Thaddeus. I love you for who you are, not for what you have." She gulped. "And I wish you wouldn't be going tomorrow. Why do you have to join the war? So many people are dying." She moved closer. "At least marry me before you go."
"I will not make you a war widow." He shook his head. "When I return we will marry."
"Don't say things like war widow." Evelyn wrapped her arms around him and rested her cheek against his chest. "When I think about a possibility of a lifetime without you it makes me want to kill myself."
"Do not ever say that!" Thaddeus gripped her shoulders and pushed her away enough to look into her troubled dark eyes. "I love you, Evelyn. I love you more than I knew I could. More than I should. You're my one weakness, don't you understand it? No matter how much I tried to push you away, to keep you safe, I couldn't fight you - nor my feelings. You're the other half of my soul."
Her gaze went tender as she reached up and cupped his face. "And you are mine."
"That's why you cannot ever say something like what you just did." Thaddeus' voice was soft. "Because the thought of your life being over is my greatest fear. I can handle anything that happens to me - just not anything happening to you."
"Then don't let anything happen to you!" Evelyn begged.
"Do not make me worry while I'm in battle!" He pleaded.
They stared up at each other, both visibly desperate.
Someone cleared their throat behind Bonnie and Jeremy.
Thaddeus and Evelyn turned towards them. "What are you doing here?"
Bonnie opened her mouth to answer.
A sense of cold drifted through her as someone walked through them and moved towards Thaddeus and Evelyn. "Miss Evelyn, your father is noticing your absence, you need to return home immediately." She motioned to someone in the shadows behind them. "Sarah will accompany you."
Evelyn stared at them, torn, before she turned and kissed Thaddeus, hard. "I'll be there to see you off. I love you, Thaddeus Sullivan. You come back to me." And with that she rushed through Bonnie and Jeremy and hurried back, accompanied by Sarah.
The first woman to walk through them turned to watch the women go, before she turned back to face Thaddeus. "She doesn't know, does she?"
He shook his head. "If she knew that I was going to die - I am afraid of what she would do."
"You could always try and run away with her." The woman tilted her head. "Maybe he wouldn't find you again. You have already helped Katherine escape when he discovered she was here."
"And how many people were sacrificed in that scheme?" Thaddeus' face twisted, guilt visible on every feature. "Not only were Damon and Stefan killed and turned into monsters - but so many of the kind vampires who lived amongst us were sacrificed for Katherine's life. Had I known that she and George were planning on hurting any innocents I never would've gone along with the plan." He shook his head. "And Klaus will always find me. He always does. All I can do now is lead him away from Mystic Falls - away from Evelyn."
"What if you went into hiding with Katherine?" Emily raised an eyebrow. "We both know that it is what she wants, and that she will come for you once she knows that you've left Mystic Falls… and Evelyn."
"Let us not talk about Katerina and her capriciousness," Thaddeus sighed, tired.
"I've seen you die in Chickamagua," she whispered. "By your own hand."
Thaddeus took in a deep breath. "So Chickamagua is where he finds me." His gaze turned, intense, on her. "Emily, you have to promise me that when news of my death arrives - that you make sure Evelyn doesn't do anything stupid. She needs to live a long, happy life, surrounded by her children and grandchildren."
"What do you want me to do?" Emily Bennett asked softly. She was a free woman now that Katherine was 'dead'.
"Do whatever you need to - tell her whatever you need to - to make sure she stays alive - that she lives to be a ripe old age." He gulped, obviously pained to stay this next part. "That she is able to find someone else to love her - and love him back in return."
"This isn't the first time your souls have done this dance, Thackery." It proved how close he and Emily were that she knew his real name. "I am afraid that this will not be the last time it will either."
He frowned and stepped closer. "Emily... Please do not-."
"Your soul and Miss Gilbert's are linked, destined. It is why you could not keep away from her even though you truly wanted to. It is why you'll never be able to keep away from her, no matter who you are or who you love in any lifetime." Emily came close and placed a hand over his heart. "But just like your soul is fated to love hers, there's this darkness around you, will always be around you, desperate to tear you apart and keep you from fulfilling your bond, your union," she sighed. "I fear that this vicious cycle might never be broken."
Thaddeus stared down at her before he sighed and placed his hands on her shoulders. "Thank you, Emily, for always being a true friend, even to the end."
Emily looked up at him, eyes pained, and pressed her hand harder against his heart. "If your soul ever returns to Mystic Falls, my bloodline will know it, will find you, and will do its best to break this curse upon your souls."
Bonnie's eyes widened.
Jeremy felt like screaming.
This was the second lifetime he'd seen, and in both of them Chloe's soul had sent him away and had chosen to die alone. He was furious. Why did Chloe's soul keep playing his for a fool? Why couldn't Chloe's soul ever trust him to be there with hers? Was he that unreliable in each and every life time? Why were there always others who knew more - who Chloe trusted more?
He clenched his fists.
"God speed, Thackery Suleman," Emily whispered as Thaddeus walked away into the darkness, ready and willing to face his death, alone.
"Why?" Jeremy whispered to himself, voice breaking and eyes filled with angry tears. "Why?"
Was he… crying?
Katherine eyed Jeremy with a blink while Caroline stress-fed on one of the bags of blood Matt and Tyler had brought back with them.
What exactly was going on?
"Do you recognize where we are now?" Bonnie's voice was hopeful as they gazed around them at the bustling village.
"No clue," Jeremy admitted as he observed the villagers and listened in to their conversation.
"Great, just great." Bonnie ran her fingers through her hair. "Not only do we not know where we are - but we can't even understand the langauge!"
Jeremy turned towards her in surprise. "What do you mean you can't understand the language? It's English!"
"No, Jere, its not." Bonnie stared at him before she blinked. "But you must've lived in this place, this period, as well. So your soul knows the language!" She slapped his chest in victory. "Yes! Finally! Something we can use!" She looked around. "All these visions have been centered around events where your soul and Chloe's get torn apart during those lifetimes, so let's look for a dark haired/blonde haired couple and try find the you from here." She looked mischievous. "So far, 1920's Chloe is my favorite - other than present-day her - of course."
"I prefer Chloe," Jeremy muttered as they made their way slowly through the crowd, keeping an eye out for his and Chloe's incarnations. They seemed to have gone further back in time, before Thaddeus.
"But you totally checked out Kenneth's butt."
"I DID NOT!" He cried out in horror.
"And you were definitely jealous of his wife," Bonnie continued on as if he hadn't spoken.
"She was dead, she should've moved on already," Jeremy grumbled. "She was keeping him from being with me - the then me - argh! You know what I'm trying to say."
Bonnie smirked. "And, of course, you got totally hot and bothered when you saw Thaddeus with Evelyn."
Jeremy glared at her. "Stop taking such enjoyment out of this."
"I just love the fact that it doesn't matter what body Chloe is in - she still gets you all flustered." Bonnie nudged her shoulder into Jeremy's, smile genuine. "I'm really rooting for you two, you know."
He managed a small smile back, knowing that she was, and appreciating it more than she'd ever be able to understand. "Thank you." He then went still, his eyes wide in utter shock. "There."
Bonnie stopped as well and blinked. "Are they behind the girl with the basket of flowers?"
"Chloe is the girl with the basket of flowers." He let out a rugged laugh. So she hadn't always been the guy in the relationship!
"How can you tell? You couldn't tell with Kenneth."
"I don't know, I just do." Jeremy frowned. "Maybe with each time jump I'm getting more sensitive to her soul?"
"Maybe." Bonnie bit her bottom lip as she thought that over.
A hand shot out and grabbed past!Chloe, pulling the surprised girl into the alleyway.
Bonnie and Jeremy exchanged looks before they hurried towards the alleyway and peered inside.
Within, past!Chloe smiled up at a handsome man with dark eyes and dark hair - a stark difference in coloring from the rest of the village. "Really, Marco, you can not do things like this, especially in broad daylight!" And yet she smiled so enamored up into his eyes. "If we are caught we will both be in trouble, but especially you." She sighed. "You know that my people are looking for any excuse to run yours out."
He nodded as he brushed a golden curl from her face. "The Travelers do just that, Gisa my love, we travel." He cupped her face. "I will not be here for much longer, we have heard stories - we will be leaving soon. Tonight, in fact." His expression went grim. "It will not be safe for you here. It will be safe for none."
"What are you talking about?" Gisa asked softly. "What have your people heard?"
"There's rumors of a dark force moving towards this village - his purpose we do not know. But my people will not stay here, not if his course proves true." Marco stared deep into her eyes. "I want you to come with me when I leave. I want you to marry me, to be my traveling bride."
Gisa smiled up at him, her happiness plain on her face, before she hesitated. "Does this dark force have a name?"
"We do not call him by his name, for superstitious reasons," Marco hesitated. "But he is known as The Original."
Jeremy watched as Gisa's face went deadly pale, and although she schooled her features to nonchalance, he'd seen a split second of utter horror.
"What did Casanova-you say to princess-Chloe?" Bonnie wanted to know, eyes wide. "She looked like she was about to faint."
"He told her that his people, the Travelers, have heard that The Original is coming to this town, and they will be leaving soon." At Bonnie's wide-eyed reaction, he blinked. "What is it?"
"You were a Traveler?"
"It would appear so?" Why was this a big deal?
"Jeremy! Do you even know what a Traveler is?" Bonnie slapped his arm. He was going to be so bruised by the time this walk through his past lives was over.
"I'm assuming some sort of nomad," he mumbled.
"A gypsy, Jeremy!" Bonnie exclaimed. "You were a gypsy!"
He blinked in shock. "Really?"
"Yes!" Bonnie turned her attention back on his and Chloe's past selves. "What's happening now?"
Marco grabbed at Gisa's hands when she tried to pull away. "Why would you say something like that?"
"Because it's the truth." Unlike mere seconds ago, Gisa was tense, defensive, guarded. "I care about you Marco, but I could never accustom myself to the way that your people live - to the constant traveling - never having a place to call my home."
"We would be each other's home," he whispered as he held her closer, refusing to let go.
"But that's not enough!" She finally broke away. "I cannot go with you, Marco, I am sorry. I will not abandon my family or my people, not for you or your people." She pulled further away. "I-Strauss has asked my uncle for my hand. I believe uncle will give it to him. He loves Strauss dearly, like a son."
"Strauss?" Marco's face twisted in anger, in utter jealousy. For Jeremy, it was like looking into a mirror. "You do not love that man! You've told me time and time again that his attentions scare you!"
"It does not matter!" She stepped backwards. "He can give me the life I am accustomed to - that I deserve!"
Marco flinched, as if hit. "You would choose material comfort over love?"
"Love will not fill hungry stomachs." Her voice was cold, as was her expression.
Marco shook his head. "You do not mean that. You are merely frightened, and I understand that. But I do not have time to woo you to the idea." His eyes hardened. "I will wait for you by our usual meeting place, out by the lake, and so help me Gisa, if you are not there I will storm your uncle's house and may the saints save anyone who tries to keep you from me." With that fiery declaration, Marco kissed her, hard.
Gisa struggled, for a second, and then she whimpered and kissed him back urgently, wrapping her arms around his neck.
Marco sighed into the kiss, relief in his body language as he kissed her deeply before pulling away. "Be there my love, all will be as it should." With that, he pressed a kiss to her forehead and hurried out of the alleyway, disappearing into the crowd.
Gisa stared out after him, her basket of flowers on the ground, and her expression heartbroken. "I am sorry my love, but I will not be there." She reached into the folds of her skirt and pulled out a silver knife, which she held to her chest. "I have always known what I must do should he find me again." She closed her eyes, a single tear making its way down her cheek before she turned the dagger in on herself.
"No!" Jeremy hurried forwards but it was too late - as Gisa collapsed to the ground, the dagger deep within her heart, the world shattered and dissolved into darkness.
"There has to be someone we can call." Caroline kept pacing the room. She would wear a hole in the floor any second now.
"Like who?" Katherine wanted to know, far too calm in the face of this situation.
Caroline opened her mouth and then closed it, not having an answer.
"Exactly." Katherine rolled her eyes. "All we can do is wait."
The door opened and Tyler and Matt arrived, both acting off.
Katherine narrowed her eyes at them. "What is it?"
Matt sent Tyler a look.
Tyler sent Matt a look.
"What?" Katherine snapped.
"We've called someone," Matt finally answered.
"You did what?" Katherine glared. "Who?"
Tyler cleared his throat. "Bonnie's grams."
Katherine paused, a chill of unease filling her. Sheila Bennett was on her way.