Author’s Note: Before you say: “But this was chapter 18!”, you’re correct. That was because Buggy made a boo-boo uploading and had to upload the real chapter 18 instead of this chapter, the true chapter 19. Go back to read chapter 18, Bella’s day out with Rebekah! And uhh… I’ll upload chapter 20 in Friday, deal? Sorry for the booboo!
“I’m home!” Bella called as she walked into the door after saying goodbye to Rebekah. After their lunch they had shopped at some clothing stores and Bella spent far too much money on clothes and other items she needed, but if she was to make New Orleans her new home, with Kol and his family, then she needed her clothes. Something told her that Charlie wasn’t going to send her her old clothes, anyway. Bella barely made it up the stairs before Kol swooped her up and carried her upstairs. “Kol!” she laughed.
“What? I figured you were tired of walking, I’m merely being courteous,” he smiled at her before setting her down in their latest addition to the apartment, a comfortable loveseat type of chair where she could hang around in. He had seen her hang on his sofa in the past few weeks, but it never looked comfortable. So he bought them a loveseat. Big enough for one, not big enough for two, but big enough if you wanted to cuddle.
Kol had rearranged some of the furniture in the living room and it looked more like a living room now rather than a single guy’s flat. Granted, he only had the one sofa before, with a coffee table. Now there was a loveseat too. And it was very comfortable. His brother Nik accused him of being broody or having nesting issues, which Kol firmly denied. He needed a loveseat, period.
“Oh, I’m liking this chair,” Bella grinned as she rid herself of her backpack and pulled him in for a kiss. “Did you have a fun afternoon?”
“I was bored out of my mind,” Kol pouted. “Jeremy wasn’t available to play a game with and after teaming up with some losers I got annoyed, so I went shopping for groceries and this chair. I couldn’t find you or my sister and to call you and ask you where you were might have been slightly over dramatic and stalkery but you spent nearly seven hours alone with my sister, Bella, who knows what could have happened?”
She snorted as she pulled him closer onto the chair and snuggled up against him. “Is this better now?” She asked as she ran her hand through his hair.
“Yes,” he muttered as his hand on her upper thigh slid inwards underneath her skirt. “And you should wear dresses more often.”
“It’s a good thing that I bought a few new ones then,” she softly kissed him as she pointed at her bag. “Take a look, I bought a few exciting things.”
He was tempted, but he was also curious as to how her day went. She seemed to be in one piece, slightly exhausted but that could have been Rebekah’s influence on her. He could detect a stronger scent of the river on her though, and he didn’t like that in one bit. “You went to the river side?”
“We had lunch looking out over the river,” Bella said nodding. “Great food, great view and apart from some people who follow me on youtube, very uneventful.”
“There’s no but,” she smiled at him, softly kissing his lips as his hand slid closer to her core. “We did some shopping and came straight home.”
He narrowed his eyes on her. “You’re not telling me everything, what happened this morning?”
Bella sighed. “Rebekah wanted to go to the French Market so we walked by Jackson Square, which is fine, because I told her you didn’t want me to go there, and I decided to ignore it. And it was fine. Nothing happened. I didn’t set a foot on Jackson Square and I didn’t get overwhelmed.”
“Ask Rebekah, I behaved like a model citizen,” she smiled at him before moving a little so she was more comfortable and he had more access to her. Although she feared that what she was going to say next was going to ruin the mood he was in. “Even when another spirit demanded my attention. Rebekah was so gracious to allow me to help this poor guy and others who died around the same time as him. He brought us to a now empty lot, but I noticed that there once had been a building and I saw you and Klaus having fun in there.”
Kol felt the color drain from his face. “You didn’t-”
“Relax,” she said, turning his face back to hers. “I don’t judge you for that. I’m well aware that I’m bound to run into messes that your family has created in New Orleans when it comes to the body count. That’s alright. And I wasn’t appalled by your actions, Kol,” she softly kissed him. “I was there to help the spirits and I did, you’ll be happy to know that most of them had already moved on on their own, the others needed some validation and then I helped them on. It was peaceful and respectful.”
“I don’t want you to see me like that.”
“Why not? It’s a part of you and I appreciate and accept all of you. Even that part of you who has control issues,” she then huffed. “If you ask me, it was Klaus’ fault anyway. Not yours. He merely took advantage of your ability to have some good old fun because he was butthurt by Elijah’s actions with Marcel.” She kissed him again, pressing her body against his. “You should know by now that I’m not afraid of you and that I’ll never think any less of you, no matter what happens or what I’ll see when I come across something of your past. Even if you’d do something like that in present times, I’ll be right with you.”
“You’re foolish, you know that?”
Bella hummed as she nodded. “But I’m your fool, as you are mine.”
“And I still believe that I’m the lucky one here,” he sighed as he kissed her, hard, before realizing something. He was met with a groan when he broke off the kiss, but smiled widely at her. “You ventured out in the world with all of your abilities that we’ve been working with the last two weeks and you used them. I’m so proud of you.”
“Shut up and continue to kiss me,” she giggled as she kissed him again.
“No,” he laughed as he moved away from her and pointed at her bag. “Show me what you bought.”
“That can wait,” Bella pulled him back towards her.
Kol snorted as he grabbed her bag and sprinted out of her reach before he started to unpack her bag. “Dress… dress… ohh… very short dress… cleavage!” He said as he threw the dresses over the back of the sofa. “Victoria’s Secret?” His eyes widened in surprise as he looked at her before throwing her new lingerie onto the sofa as well. And then, there was a packaged box at the bottom of her bag. “What’s that?”
“Your present,” Bella smiled as she got off the chair, getting slightly nervous now. That present could either be a hit or a definite miss, and if it was a miss, she was going to blame Rebekah. In anticipation for his reaction, she was already wearing a new set of lingerie – mainly because Rebekah was appalled by her ‘generic’ underwear and had basically ripped it off of her to destroy it.
“Oh, you’re excited for this one,” he cooed as he got the package out of her bag and placed her bag onto the sofa next to her lingerie. “I think I’ll keep it wrapped for now and place it…” Kol looked around and headed over to the kitchen island. “Right here.” He placed it down and looked at her with a smirk on his face. “Thank you for my lovely present, darling,” he eventually said, he could smell her arousal from where he was standing. “I’ll bet that every time you see this you’ll get this excited.”
“That’s not fair.”
“It’s my present,” Kol huffed. “I can do whatever I want with it!”
“But I bought it for you!”
“Yes, and I love it, thank you!” Kol walked over to her and put his arms around her. “You didn’t have to buy me a present, you know. It’s been a long time since someone bought me a present,” he nuzzled her neck as he breathed in her scent. “I wonder what’s in it…” He tugged on her dress and caught a glimpse of her new lingerie underneath it. “Ohhhh… I get to unwrap another present?”
Bella gave him the same smirk he usually reserved for her. Reaching up and resting her arms over his shoulders, she shook her head. “Sorry. You can’t have one without the other, so you’ll have to wait to unwrap me. Besides, I thought you were going to spend time with your family or Jeremy. What happened?”
“As I said, Jeremy didn’t have time to play a game and I didn’t really want to feel like a bother to my family. I got bored, did groceries, bought us that chair,” he said as he was tugging on her dress to have a peek at her new lingerie. “I went on the internet and read all the comments underneath the Cullen House videos Jer has posted so far, followed up on some rumors…” Kol nuzzled her neck again. “Would you like to play at the Sanatorium tonight? Hone your new abilities even further?”
“I thought you wanted to unwrap me?”
“Yes, but that means I’ll have to unwrap that present of yours too, but I’d rather see you squirm a little more with it on the counter,” he smirked and softly kissed her. “What do you say? Impromptu visit? Call Jeremy and ask to meet us there?”
Bella let out a whine. “I’ve been out all day, can’t we stay inside? Have some nice food and relax? Play a videogame?”
Kol groaned as he rubbed his eyes. “Bella… I want to go out!”
“We can go out for dinner?” She smiled brightly and pulled him closer to kiss him again. “And we could do a live stream for my viewers? Answer some questions?”
“In the Sanatorium?”
“Here,” she laughed and hit him on the head. “I doubt we could ever do a live stream at a location due to high internet streaming costs and no way to edit out your and Jeremy’s superpowers.”
“Oh darling, you know money is not an issue,” Ideas were now popping up in his head. “Never say never!”
“No,” Bella shook her head laughing. “Never ever are we going to do an investigation live. That would just be ridiculous and pretty much over the top.”
“Hmm,” Kol said as he looked at her and took out his phone. “Dinner, what are you in the mood for?”
She scowled, but was happy that Kol had given up on going out for the night. She wanted to be home, recharge and have some fun with Kol, in any shape or form. While he ordered food, she got out of the comfy chair and started to clean up her newly acquired clothes and underwear, trying to ignore the package on the counter.
Once everything was in its place, she sent out a tweet that she was going to do a live Q and A that evening and that questions were welcome. In no time, her phone was blowing up so she muted it until further notice. She poured Kol something to drink and got a soda herself and joined him on the new chair as they waited for their food to arrive. “We can do the Sanatorium tomorrow.”
“Yes,” she smiled at him. “I’m curious to see what that room looks like from their end.”
“Awesome,” he softly kissed her as he took her phone and started to read the replies she got from her tweet. “You’re not going to answer all of them, are you?”
“Oh, hell no,” she shifted a little so she could watch along. “I tend to avoid the really personal questions. I’m open about a lot of things, but some things it’s none of their business. I think that most questions will be about you and Jeremy and the Cullen House.”
“I’m not going to be doing that video with you.”
“I didn’t think you would,” she softly kissed him. “You can ask me the questions off camera.”
“Are you sure about that?” He teased her as he put the phone on the table and put his arms around her. “What if I start asking you really naughty questions, such as… Can I see what’s underneath that dress of yours?”
“We could make our own sex tape and call it… Divine Pornography.”
“Release it on some porn site…” he mused, amused by the sour look that Bella shot him.
“Kol!” Before he could open his mouth to speak again, she continued. “If you’re going to be an ass about it, I’ll ask Jeremy.”
Kol pouted. “I was just having some fun at your expense.” He was saved by the bell because she looked unamused as hell. He darted down the stairs to fetch the food and quickly plated everything up so they could eat. After dinner, he loaded up the dishwasher while Bella was setting up for her live video, making sure that nothing of personal nature was in the field of view.
Was he feeling sorry that he and Jeremy had taken away the editing of her videos from her? Not in the slightest. Bella knew what she was doing, but she had more time for herself now, and all the research and all came down to him and Jeremy. All he wanted was to make life easier for her and make her happy. And it looked like she was very happy.
He couldn’t wait to fully start exploring her abilities, yes she had grown a lot and learned to work with her new abilities, but that was in the safety of the courtyard with controllable spirits thanks to the voodoo priestess. He also couldn’t wait to find out more about what she was exactly, but knew that for that answer, it was likely they’d have to take another trip into her mind and now that she was stronger, it may not be as accommodating as the first time.
Bella was humming to herself and slightly bouncing on her feet as she headed to the kitchen to fetch herself a glass of water. She didn’t have anywhere else to go, or to use her abilities that night, so why wasn’t she drinking alcohol? “Darling, we do have some excellent choices of wine.”
“I know that,” she smiled at him. “But that doesn’t mean that I have to drink it. I like water, soda. Alcohol is for when you go out to dinner or when you’ve had a really crappy day.”
“Or when you’re a vampire trying to curb the hunger.”
Bella shrugged. “Ever tried taking a sandwich instead?”
She let out a slight giggle as she settled in front of her laptop. “Ready?”
Kol nodded as he sat down in the new chair and put his feet up on the table, relaxing as he fiddled with her phone, listening to her words as she greeted those who were showing up, and once they became too many for her to individually greet, she started to talk about other stuff, even quickly looking for the last youtube video uploaded so she wouldn’t accidentally spoil things for her fans.
He knew which one was the last one, it was the one where Bella closed a portal after he and her were thrown across that room. Certainly that would get a lot of questions. He was going to try to keep those kind of questions to a minimum, mainly because he wasn’t over the whole experience yet. It was still mind boggling how easy it had been for him to be possessed like that; that he hadn’t been strong enough. Maybe he needed some training with Myriam’s spirits.
“Ready for your first question?”
“Yes!” Bella beamed at him before looking back at her laptop. “Kol’s so kind to read some of your questions to me, how awesome is that?”
“Merely doing it because you’re lazy,” he countered playfully. “Alright, this question is from Marcy who’s wondering what your abilities are, after watching the latest video we’ve uploaded.”
“Oh, nice question!” Bella cheered. “Uhm, well, as you all can probably tell, my abilities seem to be evolving right now, but the basis is that I can speak to the dead, hear them talk to me or communicate with them telepathically. I can feel what they’re feeling if I allow myself to, I usually rely on that feeling to guide me. An old ability of mine, where I can see glimpses of the past or how they are now, has resurfaced and honestly, it’s quite scary! However, now that I’m working with Kol and Jeremy, I have become stronger and a little bit more careful.”
“Did you know you could close portals?”
“I still don’t know if I can close portals,” Bella laughed. “That was an accident and it’s likely that it’s still there.”
“That’s debatable, but you already said you weren’t going back,” Kol pointed out playfully.
“No, we are not going back there. Ever.”
“This question is from Mariska; would you ever consider doing a reading for a person?”
“I’ve been asked this a lot, and I’ll say it again; I’d never do a reading for a living person because I’m not made for that. Uh… it requires to have severe people skills that I don’t own and I’m happy with the way I do things. I like to tell stories, stories of people long forgotten, and hopefully make things a little bit better for them, maybe even move them on if they need some help.”
It was quiet for a few moments, which had Bella look over to Kol. “What?”
“Oh, nothing,” he muttered. “Just a couple of hundred questions if we could get Jeremy to show up with his shirt off…”
“Oh, don’t say that too loud,” Bella laughed. “Because he might actually do show up!”
“Ah, here’s a good question,” Kol said with a lazy smirk on his face. “How much different is it to work with your new guys compared to the old one? It’s from Alice.”
“Oh, entirely,” Bella huffed. “Nothing against Jake, absolutely nothing, but Kol and Jeremy both have experience with the paranormal and it’s fun to learn from them. They’re both very worried about my safety, hence why I was tethered to Kol at the Cullen house because as you all know, I do have a tendency to toddle off. We were at the Sanatorium, and you won’t see this footage because we can’t validate the story, but while Kol and Jeremy were distracted by some ghosts, my attention was drawn away from them and I walked off. I was safe, but the both of them nearly got heart attacks.”
“You’ll never be untied ever again, by the way. The Cullen House wasn’t just a one off thing with you being tied to me.”
Bella eyed the package on the counter and flushed beet red. “You have no idea.”
“Ohhhh,” Kol cooed upon seeing her reaction to his words and then looking at the package. What on Earth did she buy him? “Shellie’s wondering why you’re doing what you’re doing. Why you’re using your abilities the way you’re using them. Have you lost someone?”
“No, I didn’t lose someone,” Bella smiled. “The spirits would never leave me alone, not until I’d listened to their stories and told those stories to my family or wrote them down. And sometimes, they’re just lonely. Not ready to move on but lonely and they need someone to talk to. Just like the living. It’s hard to ignore when someone’s in pain or sad.”
Kol laughed then. “Jasmine is wondering if we are dating and if I could show my face.”
Bella gasped then, mock shocked. “That’s a personal question for one, and I won’t answer that, and when I took on Kol as my cameraman, he clearly stated that he’s just that, the camera man. Out of view. I think we all should respect that. Although he does have a very handsome face.”
“Patricia is wondering why we went to the Cullen House in the first place. Jeremy never explained that in the first video.”
“We were asked to investigate it by its current owner Edward after the property was empty and abandoned for quite some time. There’s a legend about the house, that it houses a secret, but nobody has been able to find it yet and the ghosts make sure that nobody ever will,” Bella replied calmly as a shudder ran down her spine. “Now, I’ve read some of your concerns about the house and its inhabitants. I also know that there have been multiple investigations by many different people since we’ve been there because Mr. Cullen won’t give up on his quest. Let me tell you what I told Mr. Cullen. The house needs to be either left alone or torn down. Forget about the legend. The spirits there are very unhappy and will do anything to keep us out. Of course, with so much activity, it’s also the most popular thing to be investigating these days. You’re playing with your life if you go there because they are capable of killing and it’s not just spirits that roam that house.”
“Did you ever see the mud Edward Cullen was slinging at you online?”
“I did, and that was a direct result of him lashing out at me for not being able to give him what he wanted; validation of the legend, and for blatantly rejecting him when he tried to flirt with me,” she replied in kindness. “I’m sure Mr. Cullen will find someone amazing, but I don’t date clients.”
Kol laughed then. “Come on, you really don’t have a meanstreak?”
“I don’t bad mouth clients, now do you have another question for me?”
“Hmm…” Kol eyed her curiously before looking back at the phone. He didn’t like most questions, and likely it were questions she had answered previously as well. “Tracy asks if you have any other talents they should be aware of, outside the paranormal gifts you have. Do you sing? Write? Draw?”
“All horribly,” Bella laughed. “I’m a pretty decent cook, though. I love to cook when I’m not too tired or too lazy.”
“Her lasagna is absolutely to die for,” Kol agreed. “You should share the recipe on your blog.”
“I might,” she grinned and waved at her laptop. “That’s it for now, we’ve had a long day and I thought it’d be fun to check in with you guys for a little while. Keep your eyes on my channel to find a new video of our trip to the Cullen House – mind you, we had to edit some shots heavily because of either personal information of something happening that we just can’t show on youtube. Or on television.”
“Hold on,” Kol said as he shifted a little as this question kept popping up and unnerving him. “You’ve been asked this question before in many other ways, but now that Drew’s appearing in our videos, will you consider appearing on his show now?”
“Drew keeps trying to get me on his show. I get offers from other ghost hunting or supernatural shows, even invitations to conventions, but I’m not going to. I do what I do and how I do it. It doesn’t usually compute with the energy of the others or how they do their things. I am not a science project. Only to myself to improve and learn new things. They are all good at what they do, don’t get me wrong. It’s just that… I’m not made for TV. Producers usually want to use things I don’t want people to see,” she took a deep breath. “Having said that, under the right circumstances, I might return the favor to Drew some day. Might. This is not a blanket ‘yes’, if the circumstances are right, and I get time to think about it, then I might. And he knows this. But I can always say no, too.”
“If it were up to me, you wouldn’t even think about it. No.”
“It’s a matter of honor, I guess,” Bella shrugged. “So, that’s all for now, have a good night and don’t forget to check underneath your beds, there might be something hiding there,” she winked before disconnecting and closing her laptop. “Done.”
“Good, can we go out now? Sanatorium?” He said a little impatient. “Let’s just go out and play with the ghosts or…”
“Take me to a movie?”