It was two weeks into her renovation period of Débauche, and she hadn’t heard anything from Alaric. But she didn’t have time to think about him as she was simply very proud of her club rising from the ashes. Oh, a lot had to be done, still. She needed new staff, she needed a friendly witch to put security up, she met this great guy who worked in IT and was willing to set up a secure payment system for her and even gave her the number of someone who was a wizard with cameras and security systems.
Klaus was fuming as he had found the witch Davina and he also found Mikael and Kol. He rendered Mikael immobile by pushing something he’d acquired the year before into Mikael’s chest, and Davina and Kol had run off because Klaus was willing to kill him.
For what? Well, for siding with their mother, of course. Myriam wanted to explain that Kol basically didn’t have a choice and that with Klaus being so closed off towards Kol that it didn’t make it easy for him to turn to him for help.
And Myriam had told Klaus that. He promised to do better for Kol, but not for Finn.
Myriam was still in bed when Klaus marched back into the bedroom after having it vacated only minutes before. “Elijah is gone.”
“His coffin is open, and Elijah is gone,” Klaus repeated as he started to pace the room. “How is this possible? Our security is fine, and he was protected by magic!”
“Your mother has been able to slip in undetected before,” Myriam reminded him as she sat up. “But who knows? It might not be your mother this time, who else is after you?”
“Who isn’t!” Klaus cried out. “No, I have a feeling that it’s Mother. She’s up to something. She wants us all in different bodies, and this is what I would do! If only I’d have unboxed Elijah, then he’d – this is all your fault!”
“You daggered him, you said we’d be better off without him and look what happened!”
“Blame the fucking witch who seemingly protected him with her magic, not me!” Myriam countered angrily as she got out of bed and started to get dressed. “In any case, I’ve been trying to stick by you while you deal with your parents and the return of your siblings, but to blame me for that wench for stealing Elijah? Sorry, Klaus, that’s the last straw,” she said as she pulled her hair back in a ponytail. “Until this is solved, I’ll be living at the club.”
“What! You can’t do that!”
“I can. And I will,” she shot at him. “Unless you want me to leave New Orleans all together? Because I can do that, you know.”
“Myriam, I need you!”
She rolled her eyes at him. “No, you don’t. You know how I feel about your parents, I’m not going to be in the middle of this. I can’t help you because frankly, while I’m pleased that I’m more indestructible than I have been in the past, I am useless to the point of not being able to help you with my pets. And yes, you hear those stories of your partner having the parents from hell, but yours are that, quite literally! I’m done!” Myriam rambled. “Both your parents have kidnapped me to get to you. The both of them! We’ve always run from Mikael. I’m not running now, but you’re making it quite difficult.”
“You’re not going to blame Elijah’s kidnapping on me!”
“I’m not! You’re not even listening!” Myriam then took a deep breath and shook her head. “I’m going to stay at the club until you’ve done something about your parents.” She then used her speed to leave the compound and headed straight for Débauche. She arrived just in time for the trucks to arrive with the inner workings of her club, it was time to decorate, or was it? Had the vampires truly worked throughout the night to paint everything? Put in new floors? Had she overestimated the two months she believed it was going to take?
Walking inside, her heart swelled with so much joy, the fight with Klaus forgotten momentarily. It was precisely as she had sketched it out. Walking into the entrance, there was a small reception area with room for a member of security to keep an eye on things. The door to the right lead to the bar area and the bar had large windows looking out on the dancers in the next room.
On the left was an area for security and her own office was behind another secure door or two, and a small utility room was also accounted for. Then there was a lovely little area with more security but also with guest stairs that lead up to the first floor; where she was going to have ladies for just about anyone. Willing ladies. Myriam wasn’t going to push, and she certainly wasn’t going to force anybody.
There was a kitchen on that floor and a handful separate rooms for the girls to work in. There was even a small dormitory for them to stay and or rest. All rooms were equipped with showers, and she had also ordered a cupboard for them.
A staircase hidden behind a security door lead her to the top floor, with once again a dormitory and showers, and a handful of apartments, one of which she was going to claim for her own. Because while she wanted to help humans who were hurt by the supernatural, she also knew that it was also likely that children would be involved. Or anxiety. PTSD. You didn’t want to put those people with others in a room.
And everything looked pristine. It smelled clean, fresh and had the colour scheme she wanted.
Myriam had her business back. She was happy.
Letting out a girly giggle, she went downstairs again and started to direct the movers to where things needed to go. Much to her surprise, more of Klaus’ vampires showed up to help. It was almost as if Klaus wanted to make up for the fact that he was once again blaming her for things she hadn’t had any control over.
But, not wanting to turn them down as it would mean the trucks would be emptied quicker, she told them where everything needed to be. She arranged her office by herself, the new laptop would arrive later that day.
By the end of the following day, her business was ready to open for business, but she still needed staff. She needed girls. Test the girls. Interviews. She locked herself into Débauche and spent the night on the internet with a bottle of vodka to look for talent. But, while the internet was accessible and useful for a lot of things, she didn’t trust the things she found. She needed someone with more knowledge of the internet, but it was 3 am, and she was drunk and all alone.
Deciding that Kol would probably know, she dialled his number. It took a while for him to answer, but when he did, he sounded different. Strained. “Are you okay?”
“I’m a little tied up, darling. We’re having a family reunion. I could really use your help to tell my brother that I’m on your side.”
Myriam let out a groan as she heard how the phone was moved away from Kol and back to likely Klaus. “Let him go.”
“He is colluding with my mother!”
“It’s Kol. Remember I caught him 100 years ago trying to plot against you? It’s what he does! Especially when he’s afraid! What you’re doing right now is making him even more fearful, so you let him go, and you hear him out. He’s truthful,” she said as she downed her bottle. “He’s on your side, Klaus, he wants to help, but he’s afraid of you.”
“And why were you calling him?”
“He’s my friend. Let him go. Don’t make me come over and beat your ass,” she got to her feet and swayed a little and bumped into the desk before making her way to the bar to find another bottle of vodka. “But if he’s busy with you, I’ll call someone else. Bye husband,” she said as she disconnected the call.
Making her way back to her office with an expensive bottle of bourbon, she dialled Alaric’s number.
“Myriam, it’s 3.30 am. Why are you calling me?” Alaric sounded groggy. Had she woken him up? Ah, she didn’t care.
“I need your help with the internet. I’m looking for ladies to work for me but all it does is take me to websites I have to pay for and this craigslist… I don’t trust.”
“And you need my help with that at this time?”
“After you killed Jeri in my apartment?”
“I sent a cleanup crew, and I got you a new couch,” she said as she took a swig of her bottle. “And I have a job for you if you don’t want to teach.”
“I am a teacher, Myriam.”
“I’ll pay you triple from what you get as a teacher.”
She could hear some shuffling on the other end of the line and a deep sigh. “I don’t do it for the money.”
“I’m your friend. I need you.”
“You don’t need me, Myriam, at least not on a daily basis. You’re more than capable of-“
He was rejecting her, wasn’t he? Well, it was only a matter of time, but it still hurt. “Then why did you move to New Orleans if you’re not my friend? You could have stayed at Whitmore, you seemed to enjoy that.”
“Because I have a better opportunity here. There’s a wider community of supernaturals and-“
“But you hate vampires and the supernatural!”
“And that you always seem to throw tantrums,” Ric sighed. “Myriam, I love you, but I’m not going to work for you. And if you allow me a few more hours of sleep, I’ll be more than happy to come over and help you out with the internet. Go have some sleep yourself, you sound as if you’re on the verge of a mental breakdown.”
“I can’t talk to anyone about this shit.”
“Then write it all down, just like I told you to do when you came to me a couple of months ago. Write it down and sort it out,” he said kindly. “Relax, have a good night, Myriam. I’ll bring breakfast in a few hours.”
“Myriam, you always told everyone that you don’t need anybody. That you’re the bigger monster than Klaus. And I know that you were only looking out for yourself when you killed Jeri, but I’m sorry, I’m not going to get out of my apartment to come to you for something as trivial as helping you navigate the internet. You’ve made your bed.”
“Asshole,” she muttered as she disconnected the call and took another swig of her alcohol. Oh, she knew that if she were patient, Klaus and Kol would stop fighting, and Kol would be able to help her out, but she wasn’t patient. She wanted to get her business running as soon as possible.
And it was ridiculous that she even needed help. She could send an email just fine and usually google helped her out just fine but how was she supposed to know that the girls she found were real girls? Or that they weren’t being beaten by some pimp?
No, she needed to go about this old school. Pushing her laptop to the side, she grabbed a pen and paper and started to draft an advertisement. The newspaper was likely going to print soon, so she had to move fast. And she was going to make copies of it and send it off to other newspapers.
Screw the internet. Sometimes doing things old school was the best way.
A couple of days later, there was a whole line of girls waiting outside the club, ready to be auditioned for dancers, and Myriam couldn’t be happier. It was a joy seeing the girls dance and try to impress Myriam, and while most of them were clearly professionals, she made sure that by the end of the day, she had a well-balanced team of professionals and some that weren’t as good. Yet.
She compelled them to speak the truth, and she was relieved that they were here on their own volition and gave them all an advance as she expected them to return the following week.
She went to Tremé and see how popular she was still there. Granted, she hadn’t been in contact with them for over a hundred years, but maybe they’d still accept her. She had taught them more about magic. The best part about the Tremé witches was that they practised both Ancestral and Sacrificial magic. And occasionally traditional magic. Tremé witches didn’t trust outsiders, and she had done a lot to gain their trust back in the day. She’d never felt alienated by them, although at this point she wasn’t sure about anything.
New Orleans had changed, thanks to Marcel, and not for the better.
As expected, it took some time for Myriam to find the Elder of the Tremé coven. She tried talking to them at the market but was given headaches every time she came close. She then remembered that she used to be close to the McDaniels, and went to find their kin. Funnily enough, the family still lived at the house that she had often frequented in the past.
The door opened, and Myriam half expected another headache or to be smacked on her ass, but instead, the resident raised a curious eyebrow. “We don’t deal with vampires.”
“I know that,” Myriam replied kindly. “And you don’t like outsiders either, which I find nothing but admirable. However, I’m not here because I’m a vampire. I’m here because I took back what was mine and I want to turn it into a safe haven for humans who fell victim to the supernatural.”
The woman huffed and motioned for Myriam to come in as she moved away from the door. “Your ‘friend’ Isabella did a piss poor job in your absence, especially in the last 100 years.”
“I know, I got rid of her,” Myriam smiled as she followed the woman. “To be fair, I’m surprised you’re still here, Diane.”
“Nothing that a little bit of magic can’t fix,” Diane sat down in her chair. “You may have your immortality, I have my spells to make my life last a bit longer, but it’s wearing thin, I can tell you that. I merely wanted to stick around long enough for Marcel Gerard’s regime to come to an end. I believe I have you to thank for that?”
“I wasn’t quite myself, but I suppose so,” Myriam chuckled slightly as she sat down across from the woman. “And Klaus knows better than to try to control the witches, as long as things don’t go too crazy, but that’s just like the werewolves and the vampires.”
Diane looked at her for a moment as she slowly nodded. “You look troubled.”
“I’ll be a lot better once my club and shelter are up and running. It’ll be the sole thing I’ll be focusing on for a while.”
The older woman let out a breath and nodded. “I shall ask my daughter and granddaughter to go to Débauche and meet with you, to talk about the security spells you require. And don’t be a stranger, you hear? I plan on hanging on for as long as I can, but eventually, this body will deteriorate, and I won’t be able to keep up rejuvenating myself.”
“Thank you,” Myriam smiled at her. “You know, I could still turn you.”
“Oh, over my dead body,” Diane laughed, shaking her head. “Don’t worry, Myriam. I’ll talk to the Tremé witches and tell them that you’re not like any other vampire and that they can trust you. You can have a good bond with us witches again.”
“I owe you, so much.”
“Darlin’, you got rid of Marcel Gerard. We owe you.”
A week later, she opened the doors to Débauche officially after the refurbishment and the hiring of new talent. She had a talented bartender and some great staff working underneath him, dancers, and even some girls who were willing, free, and able to entertain men privately. However, tonight was all about the bar and the dance club, and she hoped, that for one day in whatever her husband and her best friend were up to now, that they’d stop and come.
However, she could understand what they wouldn’t. After all, she had ignored Klaus’ phone calls and text messages, and she wasn’t helping him with his parents. No, she was safe in her club.
She loved watching the people entertain themselves, watching the girls on stage. Currently, there were the Bees. They came to Myriam to tell her that there was a hit on her head for quite some money and that they would keep her safe if she’d paid double. Which she did. And offered them an hourly fee if they’d work for her. As it turned out, the Bees were professional dancers apart from their side job as hitwomen.
Could Myriam trust them? Sure, after she compelled them!
But Bree, Betty and Bianca were amazing. Tall, gorgeous and dangerous. And they had the men eating out of their hands.
It was near midnight when security alerted her of two witches who wanted entrance into the club. Myriam had a strict no witches, vampires or werewolf policy unless she stated that they were allowed in, and the spells and dark objects that Diane’s family had made for her were the ones who screened every soul that entered the threshold.
She headed over to the detention area and blinked when she saw Kol, accompanied by a very young witch. “Kol!” she smiled at him and hugged him tightly. “You made it!”
“Of course I did, darling,” he smiled at her. “This is very important to you. Sorry, we’re late. Very impressive magic.”
Myriam grinned. “Well you’re welcome to stay, but your little friend doesn’t look legal.”
“She’s not, but surely you can make an exception for Davina?”
Myriam narrowed her eyes on Kol before looking at Davina. She was a Claire alright. “Heard so much about you, Davina, pleasure meeting you. But no. Access denied.”
“Oh come on, Myr!” Kol whined. “We want to party, and she’s allowed in Rousseau’s!”
“This isn’t Rousseau’s. If you want to go to Rousseau’s, you go to Rousseau’s. You know very well what kind of place I run!”
Kol huffed. “You never had an issue with underaged girls before.”
“Those were different times. I had to bend over backwards to get the licenses that I have, and I’m not going to ruin it by allowing her inside.”
“Oh come on, you’re a vampire.”
“Kol. No,” Myriam said sternly. “I’d love to have a chat with you and get to know Davina, but not in the club. I really appreciate you coming, though. It means a lot.”
“It’s alright,” Davina eventually spoke up and gently caressed Kol’s arm. “Myriam obviously takes pride in her club and wants to keep everything legal. That includes me not entering the bar and the club. It’s rare these days.” Davina then looked at Myriam. “I can see why Kol likes you so much. How about we have lunch tomorrow at the little eatery on the corner of this street?”
“That sounds like a plan, thank you for understanding, Davina.”
“I’m thankful of you for ridding New Orleans from Isabella. She was really shady. If there’s anything I can do for you, just ask.”
Myriam smiled at her. Silly young witch. “You shouldn’t offer your services like that. Not to anyone,” she said sternly. “But yes, see you two for lunch, tomorrow. Thanks for coming and Jerry here will see you two out.”
“But Myr…” Kol tried again.
“No, Kol. You should be glad that I even allow you to enter without Davina if you want after you started the fire!”
“That was years ago, you’re still blaming me?”
“Yes. You’re a fire hazard,” she said as she crossed her arms over her chest. “Out. Now.” After making sure that Kol and Davina had truly left the building, she went back to the party and found Alaric sitting at the bar, nursing a bourbon. “Hey, you made it. Thought you wouldn’t want to see me anymore.”
“I don’t,” Alaric said as he watched her sit down next to him. “In fact, I think I’m going to move back to Mystic Falls.”
“Because you made me leave?” Alaric shrugged. “Because I’m in a huge city filled with witches, werewolves and vampires and I simply can’t understand how I can live here. You helped me with whatever Esther did, and I helped you to regain your senses, but I think that’s where things should end for us, Myriam.”
“You killed someone in my flat. Someone I had found for you to help you.”
“And she was going to take my invulnerability,” Myriam hissed as she slapped her flat hand on the surface of the bar.
“And what if Kol wouldn’t have been there at the right moment?”
“I’d rather have died.”
“Yeah, you see, I don’t believe that,” Alaric said as he knocked back his drink. “I do think that this is a great venture for you, Myriam. It’s good that a vampire is looking out for those who can’t. And while you do that here, let me do that in Mystic Falls where the population of vampires, werewolves and witches can be counted on one hand. Maybe two.”
“I thought we were friends,” she muttered.
“Friends? No. We have a connection, but we’re not friends. I like you, Myriam, but I don’t like what you are. I don’t like it that you’re in bed with the big bad wolf, literally. And he’ll continue to hurt you. Chip away at everything that you are and you will continuously need to fight that because eventually, you’re going to change so much that not even your mother will recognise you.”
Myriam rolled her eyes. “I’ve got my club back. I’m good, but sure. Leave me. Live your life the way you want to.”
“What? You want me to cause a scene in a full bar during the grand re-opening of everything that I love? You’re not going to get it,” Myriam said as she signalled the bartender for a drink. “See you later, Ric. Thanks for the help. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.”
“Oh come on.” Alaric huffed.
“You’re ruining my night. Leave before I decide you’re not going to leave New Orleans alive,” she finished her glass and pushed herself off of the bar and continued to mingle.
“Can I have this dance?”
Myriam smiled when she heard the voice she’d wanted to hear all night and moved against him as she put her arms around him. “You made it!”
“This is an important night, I thought I’d arrive fashionably late, in the hope that you’d be alone,” Klaus replied as he put his arms around her and kissed the top of her head. “I’m surprised I wasn’t stopped by your security as Kol was. He wasn’t happy.”
“There’s only one hybrid. I told my guys to allow you through, always.”
“You built a fortress, love, it’s even worse than before we left.”
“Yeah well, your parents are in town, and threats are eviler this time,” Myriam sighed as she looked up at him. “How are you doing, mon LouLou?”
“Could have done better, but we’re dealing with mother now,” he said quietly. “There’s a plan in motion. She wanted to use Camille as a body to jump into, but we’ve put a stop to that. Elijah…” he sighed then. “Mother has done a real number on him, and we’re keeping him in the dungeon below. Kol provided the protective spells.”
“I miss you,” he sighed again as he kissed the top of her head. “Come home.”
“You can stay here with me,” she could feel herself melt against him. “This place is safer than the Compound.” The hell with going home. Not with mommy and daddy dearest on the loose. Not until Klaus would treat her better. “Come on, just for one night. Let us be husband and wife again. Let me show you around. Forget your worries for one night.”
He let out a breath and nodded. “Very well.”
“Is that because you want to or because I asked?”
“Because I need to,” he told her, a smile on his face. “My wife has rebuilt her business, and it’s more glorious than ever. Why should I go back to our home alone when there’s so much celebrating to be done?”
Myriam let out a groan. “You’re thinking with your dick. I want you to be with me because you want to. Not because you have an itch to scratch or because I asked.”
“Love, what I need or want is not on the table tonight. It’s what you want, what you need.”
“Really? Even if I just want to spew my thoughts?”
Klaus nodded. “I am your husband. I can always listen. You know that I don’t do well with change, but I’m willing to try. Again. You’ve given me so many chances, I want to do it right this time.”
Myriam smiled then, believing the sincerity in his voice. “Come on, then, let’s leave this party early and let me show you around and take you to my room.”