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Weeping Willows

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Mystic Falls 10th Century

 


“Come on Niklaus! I want to go see the men who change into wolves,” A young woman shouted as she ran through the forest, two boys following shortly behind. The first boy was older, old enough to be consider a young man. He had long blonde hair and striking blue-green eyes. His body was broader, obviously with some form of muscles underneath his linen clothing. The second boy was much younger. His hair was a little shorter than the other boy’s, dark brown, and obviously not brushed. He was leaner than the boy before, making him a bit more agile along the trees. The older boy’s feet hit the ground faster as he tried to get closer to the girl,”Ingrid wait up! Henrik and I cant keep up with you! You must be faster than everyone else in the village.” 

Henrik smirked as he ran in front of Niklaus, “You may be too slow to keep up with her, brother, but I can easily catch up.” Henrik ran faster causing his brother to retaliate by running as fast as he could. The girl, Ingrid, stood still as she watched the boys run to her, both getting there around the same time. She laughed a little as Niklaus was out of breath,”It’s almost dark, we should probably climb a tree or something so that we’ll be safe.” 

Niklaus nodded his head, looking around for a tree that would be pretty easy to climb. His eyes fell on one nearby. It was a weeping willow with low branches. It was thick enough to cover their smell as well as hide them from any peering eyes. Without saying a word he lifted Henrik up onto the nearest branch, “Keep climbing. We are coming up next.” Ingrid walked over and pulled her arms up onto the tree. She brought her legs up, a difficult task considering she was in a dress, and lifted her body up. “Come on Klaus. The wolves will be out soon.” Klaus followed suit and lifted himself onto the tree with ease.

The night had been going greatly until the moon reached it’s peak. That’s when the wolves truly came out. There was a whole pack of them. Henrik stood up on the branch he was sitting on, “Look Nik! There they are,” he exclaimed pointing to the wolves getting closer to them. As he turned back around to see the wolves again, he lost his footing and tumbled down to the ground. Ingrid’s eyes went wide as she jumped into a sort of shock, “Henrik!” Niklaus immediately hopped down after his brother and grabbed him by the hand. The wolves now hand them surrounded. There was no way they would be able to climb back onto the tree in time. Niklaus glanced slightly up towards the girl hidden in the branches of the tree before grabbing his brothers hand and sprinting off the wolves chasing off behind them. Ingrid was horrified. She couldn’t move nor could she think. Instead she curled up into a ball on top of the tree branch and cried, hoping for the safety of the boys.

She didn’t leave the tree until the next morning when the sun rose into the sky. By the time she made her way to the village, Henrik was dead.

I know this was a short chapter but most of the flashback chapters will be shorter i think. Eventually i may combine the normal chapters with these.

Chapter Text

The powerful sound of a girl’s feet hitting the ground rang quietly out around the football field. The Sun was beating down a down a cruel heat as the girl ran quicker, her caramel ponytail flying behind her. She took a deep breathe every time she took a step, slowly exhaling as she pushed her feet into the air. Sweat fell from her face onto her thin form. Step, breathe, step breathe, she thought as she got closer to the end of her fourth lap. Step, breathe, step breathe. Her feet scudded to a stop as she reached her coach, “How was that?” She said breathing deeply as she hunched over a little infront of him. 

Her coach looked down at the stopwatch he had in his hand, “5 minutes 10 seconds. Keep it up and I’m sure you’ll get some great scholarships.” 

The girl sat down on the turf field and drank some water, watching as the rest of the track team finished their laps. Her hand reached into her sports bag and pulled out an necklace with a small emerald green stone. She had had the necklace for seemingly forever. It was the one thing that she could keep up with. Without it she felt weaker somehow and less herself. She held the stone in her palm, eyeing it up slowly. The stone looked older than she was, but for some reason she felt like she had had it back when it was clean and new. 

“I honestly dont know why you always keep that necklace,” a gentle voice called up from above her, shaking her out of the mind state she was in. The voice had come from a tall blonde girl with amber eyes. She stood over the girl with a genuine smile, “You really go into your own little world when you’re done with a run, Amelia. I’ve been standing here for the last 2 minutes. We are about to do hurdles.” 

“Hurdles are the worst,” Amelia groaned as she pushed herself off the ground, shoving her necklace back into her the small pocket of her bag. Her friend rolled her eyes before jogging to the rest of the team, who were setting up the hurdles,”Hurry up!”

Amelia rolled her eyes before jogging along side her friend,”Harper wait up!”

*

After track practice, Amelia returned to her small 2 bedroom home drenched in sweat. Her backpack draped onto her shoulders. She opened the creaky door and stepped inside, right foot forward. Her mother sat on the leather couch a mimosa in hand. From the look of it she had had at least four before it. Ever since Amelia’s father died the year before her mother would often greet her quite drunk. “He-e-y sweetie, How’s your day been,” came her slurred words. Amelia rolled her eyes, “it’s been fine mom. I’m going to go to my room and shower.”

”Okay sweet.. sweet.. tea” Her mother called out as Amelia turned the corner into the hallway, “Have fun.” 

Amelia sighed as she closed the door to her bedroom. She grabbed a pink and purple polka dotted towel from the hanger by the door way to her bathroom before stepping in. She placed the towel onto the toilet seat cover and turned the handle all the way to the right. 

She stepped into the bathtub and let the scolding water hit her skin. Her skin turned bright red under the heat. She grabbed her coconut shampoo and squeezed some into her hand before engulfing her curls in it. She wrapped her hair to the top of her head and let it sit for a second. She closed her eyes and put her hands on them, pushing some of the water away. As she turned to put her hair under the stream of water, a cold whisper rang out from behind her, “Ingrid...”.

She opened her eyes and turned her head and opened her eyes in shock. There was no one behind her. She turned around again and watched as the soapy substance fell the bottom of the tub. All the sudden, the water turned black and gooey, sticking itself to her feet. She jumped in shock, falling over the side of the bathtub. Once she hit the floor, she closed her eyes and took a deep breath. “It’s not real. You’re just tried. You imagined it,” she repeated a few times before opening her eyes once more. 

There standing over her, was a blonde man who had the most striking eyes she had ever seen. She nearly screamed, but for some reason nothing came out. She was mesmerized. 

The man leaned closer his long blonde curls nearly falling onto her. She could feel his hot breathe on her face as he whispered, “Ingrid...”

She closed her eyes trying to focus on anything else. When she opened them, the man was gone and she was still in the shower, but the water was now cold. Amelia quickly washed and conditioned and hopped out of the shower and into her room, covering herself with her towel. She grabbed her phone and looked at the time. It was now 6:35. She had been in the shower for over an hour. An hour had passed in what seemed to her as 15 minutes. Amelia’s head spun with explainations as to what had happened, but none but one made any sense. She had to have been going crazy. She got dressed in a black hoodie and sweats, slipping on her necklace in a quick motion. Once dressed, she walked into the living room where her mother sat passed out. She walked over to the coffee table and downed her mom’s last mimosa, hopping that the alcohol would clam her a bit. Afterwards she went back to her room, laid on her bed and closed her eyes, and even though it was only 6 o’clock and she hadn’t eaten dinner yet, sleep engulfed her like a blanket, taking her to dreams of the in the bathroom.

~1002 words~ Still not as long as I wish it was, but I couldn’t figure what to add after this part and I knew that this was semi what I wanted to happen to this chapter.

Chapter Text

Amelia’s head was aching. She had been at school for a little over 4 hours, and she couldn’t wait for lunch. AP Psychology was by far her favorite class most days, but due to the events that transpired the day before, she truly didn’t want anyone to pick at her brain. Harper sat two rows down from her with her boyfriend, Lucas. Every few minutes, Harper would look back at her with a questioning stare. Amelia was happy to stare right back, in a more menacing way.  Eventually Lucas realized that Harper was distracted by something so he turned around as well.

 Their teacher, Mrs. Sanders, seemed to notice the tension as she called on Amelia next, “Amelia will you give us an example of the super-ego.” Amelia straighten a bit in her chair and broke eye contact with Harper. “An example of the super-ego is knowing its rude to stare at someone.”

Mrs. Sanders seemed to regret her decision as both Harper and Lucas turned back around to the front, “Yes that’s correct. Now moving on to the id.”

As her teacher began lecturing the class again Amelia put her head on her hand and leaned foreword. Ever since the bathroom incident about a month prior, every time she closed her eyes she saw the blonde man. It caused her to get less sleep and more migraines. Now it was late October and she had her guard fully up. She wasn’t going to say anything to anyone. She didn’t need anyone else. She was fine. It was a facade. She was truly breaking down inside, taking out her frustrations on others, not knowing what was happening to her and what was to come next. She wanted someone to confide in, but she didnt want to confide. It was as if her mind was going in two directions. Maybe that was another sign that she was going crazy. She felt her eyes start to close, and she almost welcomed sleep. That was until she saw his eyes. Faster than a speeding bullet, her eyes opened again. She didnt know how she was going to survive if she kept having these hallucinations, but she was too stubborn to tell anyone about them. Not even Harper.

Once the bell rang, Amelia jumped out of her seat faster than anyone could imagine, backpack in hand. They had the last lunch before transitioning to the next class. She quickly made her way to the cafeteria before sitting down at her normal table, the one closest to the door. She opened her lunch box and pulled out a bottle of water and a thermos that was filled with chicken noodle soup. The spoon was attached to the side. Right as she twisted the top off of the thermos, Lucas and Harper stepped inside the lunchroom holding hands. Amelia couldn’t help but roll her eyes at the two. Harper moved her feet over the bench connected to the table and sat down. As soon as Harper sat down Lucas left to go sit with his guy friends, leaving just Amelia and Harper at the table. Once Harper saw he was gone she looked over at Amelia, “Okay. Seriously Amelia, What’s wrong?” She looked over Amelia, “Ever since last month, you’ve been more hostile and you are obviously not getting enough sleep.”

Amelia rubbed her head, “Nothing is wrong. I’m fine.”

Harper rolled her eyes,”You may be able to convince anyone else that, but I’ve been around you long enough to know that something is up. Your running time has been steadily going up. You look tired all the time, and let’s not even mention how you’ve been on edge. You normally tell me everything, so I know whatever it is this time is pretty bad.”

Amelia slurped some of her soup,”It’s really nothing. I don’t see what the big issue is.” Harper looked at her with a look that just screamed that she was not buying into whatever Amelia was selling. “Mel... Believe it or not I’m not going to judge whatever it is.”

Amelia thought it over. She wanted to trust Harper, but she was scared that by saying it it would become real. She’d have to be ready to face the problem instead of just refusing to acknowledge it.  She took a deep breathe, “I’ve been seeing things...” Harper looked at her in confusion, but something about her face told Amelia she didn’t think she was crazy, so she continued, ”...hearing things. It’s the same every time. I can’t even close my eyes without seeing him.”

Harper looked a little worried, “Whose him?”

Amelia sighed as she rubbed her eyes. “I don’t know,” she said in exasperation, “but every time he calls me a different name. And I don’t know how, but I always know he’s talking to me. It’s like my body recognizes the names, even if my mind doesn’t. I can’t sleep. I won’t myself. The dreams freak me out.”

Harper looked over to her eyes calculating , “Have you tried to? Maybe your mind is trying to tell you something. Maybe the only way for the dreams to stop is for you to go through them.”

She thought about it. Harper did have a point. The last time she got a full night of rest and not just a few hours was the night after the incident. And during those few hours her body was too tired to dream. Maybe her lack of sleep was what was causing the visions. “Yeah maybe..”


School came to a close after what had seemed like forever. Amelia had told Harper to tell their coach that she was sick, so that she could skip after school practice and stay home and sleep. She opened the door to her house and stepped inside. She was all alone due to her mother being away at her job. How she kept work, Amelia would never know. Amelia dropped her backpack by the door, and walked over to the kitchen making herself a cup of milk. She placed the glass cup into the microwave and set it for 30 seconds. Once it was done, she took the glass out and walked to her bedroom. Shutting the door behind her, Amelia placed the glass of milk on her nightstand and changed into her silk pajamas set. She climbed onto her bed. She brought her comforter over her body and closed her eyes.

When her eyes opened again, she was in a new place, in a new time. She was now standing in the middle of what seemed to be a busy market place. The people were all wearing victorian styled clothing, the women in corsets, the men in poofy pants. It was clearly a poorer part of whatever city she was in, due to the muddy clothing and the amount of people. They were all speaking in Italian, but somehow she could understand ever single word they were saying as if they were speaking in English.

A slight breeze went down her back, causing her to realize she was still in her pajamas. She immediately covered herself with her arms and hands, knowing that her pajama’s were rather revealing, but it seemed like none of the people even realized she was standing there.

Out of the corner of her eye, she notice the blonde man standing in one of the alleyways seemingly waiting for something. Amelia was about to walk over to him, when she noticed a a woman in a hooded gown walking slowly to him. She walked with a stance that screamed royalty. Her head, though covered, was held high and her chest was pushed forward. Once she reached the man, he grabbed her and pulled her into the alleyway.

Amelia immediately responded, following them into the back street. Once there, she watched as the man spun and dipped the woman. The woman laughed one of the sweetest laughs Amelia had ever heard. It was full of pure joy. Once the man helped her stand again, the woman leaned forward and hugged him, her arms holding him softly but strong. Amelia could tell that the two of them were obviously in love. 

“Oh Nik...”, The woman said, her voice somewhat familiar to Amelia’s ears, “I’ve been waiting to see you all day.”

The man, Nik, laughed a hearty laugh, “While you’ve been waiting all day, I’ve been waiting years to hold you in my arms.”

Amelia let herself smile at the mans sweet words. It was a cute gesture to her. The woman played with her thumbs,“My father has chosen a man for me to marry Nik. I tried my hardest to convince him otherwise, but he cannot be persuaded. I want to be with you. You are a nobleman... Maybe if you speak to him he will allow me to marry you instead.”

Nik turned around, putting his back to the woman, “As much as I would love to marry you, maybe it would be best for you to be with someone else. Maybe you’d be safer.”

The girl scoffed and crossed her arms. Amelia couldn’t help, but to feel mad as well. “How would I possibly be safer? Francis is a lord from Rome. He knows nothing of me. While you...you know everything.” 

“Mara,” The mans voice turned cold, “I am your destroyer. It’s my curse. I am a monster of the night.”

Mara seemed to become sad, “You will not kill me Nik. I know you believe you will, but I have faith. I love you and our love can thrive.”

Nik’s body whipped around and anger. Faster than Amelia could blink, Mara’s body was on the wall to the building, her throat cupped by Nik’s hand. “What don’t you get about the word no, Mara.”

Mara struggled in his grip, but he was too strong.“Nik,” she gasped out, “Stop Nik. You’re hurting me.”

But Nik was too angry to notice her words. All of the sudden a figure came out from the street and rammed into Nik causing him to drop Mara. 

“Brother what have you done?” The man asked glaring down at Nik. Nik was looking at his hands as if in fear. He closed his eyes slowly and took a deep breathe. Mara was laying on the ground gasping, trying to get her breathe. The other man grabbed her hand, and helped her stand. When she moved to stand up, her hood finally fell off.

Amelia let out a gasp. Mara looked just like her. The man turned around quickly looking directly at Amelia, his eyes glaring. Nik looked at him in confusion, “What is it Elijah?

Elijah looked Amelia in the eye before turning and looking at Nik, “Nothing, Take Mara home.”

Nik grabbed Mara’s arm causing her to flinch. Nik looked at her softly, apologetically, but Mara wouldn’t even look at him. Elijah looked back over to her once the two were out of the alley. He squinted as if trying to see something, “huh..I could’ve sworn...”, he looked around again with calculating eyes, “How curious.”

 

~1845 words~

Chapter Text

Amelia wasn’t one to usually party, and she definitely wasn’t one to go to one being thrown by the lockwoods. The only reason she was getting ready to go to one was because Harper had asked her to. It had been about a week since she had the dream and she had been sleeping peacefully since. Because of this Amelia felt like she owed Harper one, and Amelia hated to owe anyone anything. That’s why she agreed to go to the Halloween Masquerade.

Harper was sitting at her vanity putting on a thick layer of red lipstick to her lips. She had been getting ready for the last hour and a half while Amelia was ready in the first 30 minutes. “I don’t see why you like going to these things Harper. It’s not like either of us are founders,” Amelia said as she watched Harper pull out her setting spray.

Harper rolled her eyes, “Sure, founders are a big deal around here, but that doesn’t mean we cant have fun. Tyler Lockwood is pretty good looking too.”

Amelia’s mouth opened in shock, “You have a boyfriend Harper. Plus Tyler is a year younger than you. I thought you weren’t into younger guys.”

”I wasn’t talking about for me,” Harper smiled, “I was talking about you. The last time you dated a guy was in the sixth grade, and if I remember correctly, it lasted less than 8 hours.”

Amelia rolled her eyes remembering Dennis Fisher, her first and only boyfriend. He smelled like fish, tried to hold her hand at every turn, and forgot her name. “I’m not going to date Tyler Lockwood,” she declared.

“I don’t see why not. He’s hot. You’re hot. You’d make great kids. Not to mention the fact that your kids would be founders,” Harper raised her voice an octave in a silly voice, “Oh just imagine the honor Amelia.”

Amelia could imagine the honor. When she was younger her and Tyler had actually been rather close friends. Her father and his father had been friends since she was little, so Tyler and her were sort of forced to be around each other. She knew that if she married him, she would be in charge of galas, fundraisers, and her voice would finally be heard in the town, but she didn’t plan on staying in Mystic Falls all of her life. In Amelia’s opinion, Mystic Falls was too boring. Nothing ever happened, and when something did happen, it usually wasn’t something good. It was usually a death by some wild animal or something. Just like her father. Instead of focusing on that Amelia said,”You and I both know that Tyler Lockwood has some anger issues.”

Harper rolled her eyes before standing up from her chair, ”Whatever. Let’s go.”

Amelia grabbed her mask walking out of the bedroom’s door, “See you didn’t even fight me on it.”

“Whatever,” Harper grumbled.


 

Once at the party Harper had left Amelia almost immediately leaving her with Tyler Lockwood and his friends Matt and Sarah. Amelia sat on the floor in the middle of the room. She knew the room used to be Tyler’s fathers office and she couldn’t help but feel a little wrong to be in there.

“So, what happened to Aimee?” Sarah said with furrowed eyebrows.

Matt rolled his eyes, “I don't know, she disappeared.”

Tyler looked at Amelia rubbing his forehead with a semi-sorry look on his face, ”She's probably drunk somewhere.”

“Like me.” Matt said as he poured alcohol onto the floor, nearly splashing Amelia.

Amelia stood up quickly, an irritated look on her face, “Hey, what the heck dude?” She said as she brushed off her crimson dress, hoping that she could get any alcohol that may have come into contact with it off of it.

Matt then grabbed a photo of Tyler’s dad and mom off the desk. “Your dad wants to party Ty,” he said as he poured alcohol over it.

Amelia was in shock, but her body responded almost immediately as she grabbed the photo trying to rip it away from the drunk boy, “Stop it, Matt! Give me the photo.”

Matt tried ripping it out of her hand, “Come on buzzkill. His dad was a douche.”

Tyler joined in and grabbed another end of the photograph. As he tugged at it, Matt released one of his hands and smacked him. His hand making a loud clapping sound causing Amelia to let go of the photo and gasp. Amelia moved to the corner of the room grabbing Sarah as she moved allowing the two boys to start to fight. Tyler stood strong looking Matt directly in the eyes. “I’m not going to fight you Matt,” He said, eyes glaring. Matt rushed over him and threw him onto the floor. Matt thew his arm back and punched Tyler in the face. Amelia ran up to Matt pulling his back in a feeble attack. Matt went to punch her, right as the door opened, revealing a beautiful blonde in a stunning one shoulder dress. She put her hands on her hips, “What is going on? Stop!” 

She ran over to the boys putting herself in the middle of them. “I can't!” Matt cried out “Let me go, I have to finish!”

Amelia looked at him eyebrows furrowed as she grabbed his shirt in an attempt to stop him, “What is wrong with you?”

He struggled against her all the sudden strong arms. Amelia’s knuckles turning white as she grabbed as hard she she could. “Let me go!” The boy demanded her.

The girl who had walked in looked at Matt with calculating eyes, before elbowing him in the face causing him to fall unconscious on the floor. Everyone looked at Matt in a sort of shock. Sarah slowly took a paper knife off the desk. “How did you do that?” Amelia asked confusion practically echoing through her voice. Out of the blue, Tyler let out a soft sounding scream. Amelia turned around to see Sarah with a slightly bloody knife. “Matt failed. If Matt fails, I can't.” She said. 

Tyler whipped around and pushed her causing her to fall back and hit her head hard on the desk. Tyler looked at his wound quickly before running over to Sarah, “No, no, no! Come on, wake up! Sarah, open your eyes, wake up! This can't happen, oh no, this can't happen. This can't be happening! Sarah! Sarah, get up! Sarah! Open your eyes! This can't be happening! Not like this!” 

Amelia watched over to Sarah checking her pulse. There wasn’t one. She turned around to see the girl standing over Tyler, “Tyler? Tyler?! Tyler, what's happening?”

Tyler screamed out in agony, “Get away Caroline!” 

“What’s happening?” Amelia asked watching Caroline and Tyler. Tyler raised his head. His eyes had changed from the color of dark chocolate to amber the color of a candle when lit. She gasped, “Oh hell no.”

 

Chapter Text

Amelia had always thought of her self as a person with high integrity. She rarely lied, but recently she found herself lying a lot more, first with Harper, then with the sheriff and the Mayor. She had simply watched as Caroline lied to Tyler’s mom and the Sheriff. “Matt and I were fighting, we broke up you know, and Sarah was drunk and dancing and she just tripped. And then she wasn't breathing.”

She leaned onto the wall putting her head in her hands. This wasnt her first time seeing a dead body, but that didn’t mean it didn’t effect her. She heard Tyler say something to the group but she tuned them out trying to focus her mind on something else. She knew what had truly happened to Tyler back there and she hated to think about it. After all, it had happened to her a year prior. She hated what she had become the day her father died and felt that it was better to keep up her original facade, hiding her anger behind polite manners and a smiling face. She looked up slightly to see Tyler and Caroline having a quiet conversation. She had a slight feeling that Caroline knew more than she was letting on. She pushed herself off the wall and walked over to the two. Taking a deep breathe she turned over to Tyler ingoring the slight glare she got from Caroline, “Has your wounds healed yet?” 

Tyler checked his wound and let out a small gasp, “How did yo—“


Amelia turned around and began walking out the building, “Tell the sheriff if she needs to speak to me I’ll be at my house. I’m too shaken up to stay here.”

Neither Caroline nor Tyler came after her. Amelia began walking to her house when she felt someone’s cold hand on her. It felt as though someone had taken an ice cube to her arm and dragged it down. She looked up to see a tall man with blue eyes and brown hair. His hair was semi-long and he looked terrified. Behind him stood a woman with brownish-red hair and green eyes. “Can I help you?” Amelia said glaring at the two. 

The man didn’t move as he looked over every one of her features carefully. The woman came to her rescue grabbing the man and pulling him back, “I’m so sorry. Don’t mind him. You just look rather familiar.”

Amelia didn’t take her eyes off of the two as they began to walk away. She heard the man quietly whisper, “Do you think its her, Rose?” 

The girl, Rose, whispered back, “Who knows? We never met her.” 

Once the two were out of sight, Amelia began walking again, passing the Mystic Grill and a bunch of trees before arriving back at her shabby home. She opened the front door and looked around, noticing her mom didn’t seem to be home. She walked into her parent’s room and sprayed her dad’s cologne, taking in the scent that brought her back to the day everything in her life change. She could practically hear the fatal shot ring out even though it had been a year. She could practically see the blood splatter. It was all an accident, but she couldn’t help but feel as though she was the worst creature in the world. Her mom had been the one to find the two. Her mom was the one who had cleaned up the blood. Her mom has been the one to call the police. Her mom had conforted her when she was a mess. It was no wonder her mom was so messed up now. Amelia had stopped talking for a full month after the accident. That’s when she finally figured out why her dad had attacked her that night. He had been a monster, just like her. Ever since then she had been chained up by Harper, who was the one who was with her the first month. She was the only one who knew the truth about her, and that’s why they were as close as they were. 

She pulled out her phone and sent Harper a text: SOS. She then went back to her bedroom and changed out of her dress and into her favorite silk pajama set. No more than five or six minutes later she heard a knock on her front door. Expecting it to be Harper, she walked over to it and opened it quickly without looking into the peep hole. When she opened the door a tall figure was looming down on her. It had taken her a few moments before she realized who it was. It was the man from before. She got a creepy vibe off the guy as he leaned forward. He took a deep breathe and breathed out slowly. Amelia was about to close the door in his face when he grabbed her and pulled her out of the house, leaving her front door wide open. He looked her deep in the eyes before stating, “Get in the car don’t make a sound.” For some reason that she didn’t understand she felt her feet, one at a time, rise and fall on the gravel silently as she walked to the car and opened the door. She felt as though she had to get in the car. She opened the passenger side door and sat down. The man was already in the car by the time she had sat down. He gave her a pointed look, “Your willpower is quite impressive. No wonder he likes you.”

He hummed softly as he put the gear into drive and drove away from her house, glancing at her every few minutes. “No wonder he likes you, indeed.”