The next day, most of their paying guests left for home and it was once again a beautiful day to relax and let most of the comings and goings being handled by the staff that they had hired, even with Myriam not available, Bella had all the faith in housekeeping to clean the rooms. While Kol and Isaac were out to get supplies in Richmond – Isaac still not being allowed to drive their new van, which was no longer a food truck but a normal sized van, Bella allowed Jeremy to take Elena and Damon out on the back porch facing the back garden. In the sun, but out of sight.
Only for Bella to double check if neither of them left their blood somewhere when they were outside. Satisfied after her check, she fetched herself a cold drink and grabbed one of the books she’d been reading and sat down on the front porch, looking out over the square. The major was really doing a lot to polish up the square and the surrounding houses. A new supermarket had opened, the cinema was back on its feet and with the funding back for the local emergency services, more people were out and about, feeling safer than they had ever felt for a very long time.
“Hey, Bella, how’s it going?”
“Sheriff,” she greeted Matt as she looked up from her book. “You’re looking fine today!”
He let out a chuckle and leaned against one of the pillars of the porch. “Thanks.”
“Anything I can do for you? You still haven’t had lunch here, we see a lot of your colleagues, but not you.”
“Always busy, you know that. Even in a quiet town like this, there’s always something to do,” Matt shrugged, his blue eyes sparkling in curiosity. “Is Isaac around?”
“Ah, no, he and his sous-chef are getting supplies, why?”
“Okay, good,” he said as he quickly sat down next to Bella with a serious look on his face. “Look, it took me a while to validate the information but I need to warn you about him. He’s not who he says he is.”
“I’m… pretty sure that he is, though, why are you thinking he’s not?” She put down her book as she looked at him.
Matt then got a piece of paper out of his pocket, unfolded it and handed it to her. On it was part of the Argent family tree. There was Allison Argent, Chris Argent and Gerard Argent. Gerard was the demented one. Gerard had a sister called Marjorie and she had a daughter, Julie, and a son called Peter, who had a daughter, Vicky, and a son, Matt, with Kelly Donovan. “My grandmother married a Maxwell, and my mom gave me and Vicky her last name because my dad left when mom was pregnant with me. Back in the late 1700’s, my ancestor Ethan Maxwell helped save this town from some supernatural shenanigans, and as you well know, the Argents are quite a big deal, too.”
“Ah, a match made in heaven then,” Bella said as she handed Matt the paper back. “So, what’s this about Isaac not being who he says he is?”
“Isaac is not an Argent, Bella. Not unless Chris and Kate Argent had another brother. Or if Kate had a son, but she was the youngest so she could never have been a mother to Isaac.”
Well this sucked. “Chris Argent adopted Isaac after his father was murdered, his mother died years before that, so yeah, he may not be on that family tree of yours, but for all intents and purposes, Isaac is an Argent. Maybe not by blood, but he’s still one of them,” she took a sip of her drink then and got her phone out. “Would you like me to call Chris to validate the story?”
“Matt, I think it’s nice that you’re looking out for me, but you’re seeing things. Isaac’s one of those innocent little puppies that won’t hurt a fly. He’s a great cook and his behaviour isn’t out of the ordinary,” she smiled kindly at him as she saw the van pull up and drive around the back.
“The Argents don’t adopt, Bella. Like ever. They live with a strict code and they value their blood family very much so. Chris Argent is deemed the black sheep of the family because he’s changed his ways and veered off the path. It’s bad news,” he said slowly. “Besides, aren’t the bad guys always the guys you least expect them to be?”
She thought for a moment, hopefully appearing to soak in every word Matt had said, but instead was trying to look for words to let him down gently. “Do you live by the rules the Argents have set way back in the old days or are you living your own life, like Chris is doing? Because technically, you’re only… what? A quarter Argent?”
“That’s not the point. I’m not in contact with anyone of that side of the family because my dad cut it off when he left us and them for a change of life. Chris Argent is bad news, so if Isaac has anything to do with him, you’d better make sure he gets out of town and away from you.”
“You don’t have anything to worry about,” she smiled at him. “Hey, come, I need to show you something, you’ll like it.” Bella got to her feet and waited for Matt to do the same before walking over the porch towards the back. “Hey guys, look what I found!” She said cheerfully.
“Matt!” Elena squealed with delight and flung herself at him, hugging him tightly. With Matt now distracted, Bella quickly walked into the kitchen where Isaac was putting things away.
“We have a problem,” Bella said as she looked at him. “The sheriff knows you’re not a real Argent, and even when I said you were adopted, he kept on pushing that you were bad news.”
“How the hell does he know?” Isaac said as he scratched his head.
“Grandfather Argent had a sister. Matt’s a cousin, apparently. So yeah, he’s familiar with the name and the family tree.”
“Problem?” Kol piped up as he walked in with a crate of fresh vegetables.
“Oh, goodie! We’ll kidnap him, make sure the vervain is out of his system and compel him. Or, you know, I could kill him.”
“The first one is a better option, fine, fine,” Kol sighed, dismissing the other thought with a wave of his hand. “Where is he now?”
“Reuniting with Elena and Damon on the back porch,” Bella replied before looking at Isaac. “But, before we do anything, can you call Chris and ask him about his aunt? I mean, Matt came with a decent story but we need to validate that story before we act upon our own paranoia.”
“Of course,” Isaac nodded as he took out his phone and dialled Argent’s number. He hadn’t spoken to him in quite some time, so he wondered if he’d even pick up the phone.
“Hey Isaac! How’s life?”
“Very well, Chris, thank you, how are you?”
“Things have been running a lot smoother with Derek in charge, so I’m a happy camper. What can I do for you?”
“What can you tell me about your aunt?”
“Aunt Marjorie?” Bella piped up.
“Oh, hey Bella! I’m sorry but I don’t have an aunt Marjorie. Gerard was an only child, why are you asking?”
“Someone knows I’m not a real Argent.”
“Then it’s highly likely that that person is a hunter. Proceed with caution, Isaac. If the hunters have found you…”
“He’s a local, he’s been in Mystic Falls all his life.”
“Again, if someone knows our family tree, it’s likely that they are a hunter, and not of the good kind. Be careful.”
“Yep, got it, thanks,” Isaac said as he ran after Kol because the vampire had bolted towards the porch. Bella followed shortly after.
“Oh, hell no!” Matt exclaimed loudly upon the sight of Kol, who had him now pinned against the wall. “Let go of me!”
“No, you slimy little git!” Kol said venomously.
“Kol, let him go, there’s no harming the guests,” Isaac kindly said, but with a little force behind his words so that Kol would stop hurting Matt, even though Isaac really wanted to punch the guy himself.
“Do you have any idea who this is?” Matt questioned Isaac and Bella once Kol had released him but stuck to his side anyway, his eyes locked onto him.
“Yeah, my sous-chef,” Isaac said lightly.
“He’s a vampire! An Original vampire at that!”
“He’s my sous-chef,” Isaac said again. “And he’s under our protection,” he added as he walked over to Matt himself and eyed him curiously. “Chris Argent doesn’t have an Aunt Marjorie, Gerard Argent was an only child. Are you playing with us, sheriff?” He pushed against Matt so he was against the wall again, and he wasn’t removing his hand from him.
“You can’t compel me,” Matt said as he looked at Kol.
“I figured, darling,” Kol smiled widely. “But not to worry, I can be patient.”
“Mattie?” Elena asked with a little voice. “What are they on about?”
“I’m a hunter, Elena. I joined the hunters so that I could kill supernatural beings like Kol and bring you and Damon into the fold, because with your blood… well, we can poison the food supply,” Matt sighed. “I thought Bella and Isaac were too stupid to realize this, but I guess I underestimated them. Caroline and Ric don’t know.”
Isaac growled lowly at Matt. “I should kill you.”
“No!” Elena squeaked. “He’s my friend!”
“Who just openly admitted to wanting to kill some of your friends like Caroline, and want to use you for your blood!” Kol responded before realizing something. “Of course, that’s nothing new to you, is it, Gilbert? People wanting your blood because you’re special.”
“The cure is not in me, it’s in Damon,” Elena huffed.
“You’re a doctor! You should know better!”
“What the hell are you talking about, Kol?”
“Taking blood from you with a syringe doesn’t mean the cure is out of your system, Elena! It’s mixed with your own, and now it’s also mixed with Damon’s. Unless you’re drained completely, you two are a danger to us all,” Kol countered angrily. “Magic or not. It’s a foreign substance inside of you and you can’t get rid of it unless you’re fully drained or your body rejects it. Basic biology.”
“She died because she was an old bat and her body probably didn’t like the change much,” Kol snapped before looking back at Matt. “Did you tell your hunter buddies about all of this?”
“I’m not saying anything,” Matt barked out a laugh. “I guess you’ll have to wait and see.”
Bella scowled then as she quickly approached Matt and Isaac and plunged a syringe into Matt’s neck, squeezing it until the fluid was all out and Matt passed out. “There. That should keep him asleep for a few hours. How long until vervain passes out of his system so you can interrogate him?” She asked Kol.
“Could be days. Who knows? Freya might show up before that and maybe she’ll like to have some fun with his mind.”
“Well then, we’d better keep him somewhere safe and strip him off his electronics so he can’t contact anyone,” Bella said as a matter of factly and looked at her boys with a smile on her face. “He can have one of the suites, but you’d better tie him up properly so he can’t escape.”
“You’re so hot,” Isaac said breathlessly and kissed her eagerly as Kol picked up Matt as if he weighed nothing.
“Down boy,” Bella grinned before looking at Elena and Damon. “You two, back downstairs, you’ve been out for a very long time and when there’s one hunter, there might be another. Don’t want you to bleed all over my house,” she said as she pointed at the door. “Go.” She then turned to Jeremy. “You’re not going to tell Caroline about this. Nor Alaric, got it? Not until we know more.”
“Got it, boss,” Jeremy smirked.
She then tossed him the keys to Matt’s truck that she had lifted from him as she plunged the syringe into his neck. “Take his truck, find gps locators or anything that could be hacked or tell others where he is, drive around, maybe take the truck to Richmond or something before you destroy the trackers, come back and put the truck in the garage, please.”
“On it, boss,” Jeremy said as he ran around the B&B to find Matt’s truck.
It was strange to tell people what to do, but she strangely liked it. Especially because they were agreeing with her. Bella then turned back to Isaac, who was still looking at her with so much admiration on his face. “What?” she let out a giggle. Oh, he was horny alright.
“You… me… upstairs?” He asked suggestively, wagging his eyebrows.
“Don’t you need to start cooking soon?” Bella laughed as she put her arms around him and looked up to him. “Or, you know, to further unpack the van?”
She kissed him and ruffled his hair. “Tonight.”
Matt had come to somewhere late during the night, but he wasn’t talking and Bella wasn’t going to push. And after making sure Matt really couldn’t go anywhere, she went back to bed.
It was great seeing Freya again, and she was more than happy to have her way with Matt until the vervain would be out of his system. There were a few potions she could try, and a few spells if he still resisted. She didn’t know Matt, but she knew that he must have been the most resilient human out there after what Mystic Falls had been through over the last two decades. It was surprising that he was still even human.
Freya told them about how Klaus had received a phone call a few days ago from his girlfriend, ranting and ranting in French and something about Vampire Aids, but Freya perceived Matt as a bigger threat right now than two humans with special blood, even if it upset her brother and sister-in-law. They’d just had to stay away from the two.
Bella suggested sending their guests home, but Freya cast a silencing spell around the room so that the paying guests wouldn’t be disturbed from Matt’s screams and that life could go on as well as possible. And it did, but Myriam was still not setting a foot at the Bed and Breakfast. Not until Elena and Damon were dealt with.
Late in the evening, Freya had forced all the vervain out of Matt’s system and Kol rubbed his hands together in glee. “We kill hunters, don’t we? Can I do that after we get information out of him?”
“What if he has the cure in his body?” Bella questioned. “No offense, but who’s to say that Elena and Damon never shared it with Matt, to protect him?”
“Can I then compel him to take his own bloody life?”
Bella sighed. “First things first, okay? Then we might consult Peter and Jasper on how to proceed with him, especially since he’s the town’s sheriff and people know him… it’s harder to get rid of someone with roots in the community.”
Kol sighed dramatically and entered the room followed by Bella and Isaac. “Hi Matt,” Kol smirked as he walked towards him. Matt was restrained with a bunch of ropes and his own handcuffs and they made it all very unpleasant for him to sit or breathe. Which was good. “You’re going to answer all the questions these two have for you, and you’re going to answer them truthfully. Have I made myself clear?”
“I hate you, man.”
“Does it work?” Isaac asked carefully.
“Of course it works, you idiot,” Matt spat.
Isaac then let out a chuckle as he looked at Kol. “Well you did say he had to answer every question we had,” he said before looking back at Matt. “What exactly do you know about us?”
“You’re werewolves and you opened a B&B here in Mystic Falls but I suspect you’re also helping other supernaturals to hide from the hunters. Either that, or you kill them because some of your guests never come out of the building.”
“We never told you we were werewolves, how do you know?”
“Followed you out when you went after those werewolves in the forest a while back,” Matt shrugged. “You’re working with vampires different than the Original kind. You’re not an Argent. I’m not sure who you are, but you’re not an Argent. I did find a Charlie Swan in Forks, Washington, who could confirm that Bella was indeed, his daughter, but there’s no Bella Swan on the hunter list, so she must be a recent turn. Perhaps by you.”
Isaac let out a snort. “Maybe, maybe not. Perhaps you’re giving me far too much credit. Do you even know about our kind of werewolves?”
“Don’t need to. All I need to know is that you’re supernatural and you need to be purged from this Earth. Wherever you go, you’re leaving a trail of bodies, human casualties. The fact that you’re actively helping supernaturals to run from the hunters makes you a bigger danger than you already were.”
“But Matt, Bella and I have been nothing but kind to the people living in Mystic Falls. Thanks to us, Mystic Falls will be rebuilt and more people will come to live here, eventually, in time. What have we, personally, ever done to you?”
“You? Nothing. My experience with Kol? He’s hurt me every single time we’ve encountered each other. He crushed my hand, threw a bottle into my shoulder. And for what? Because I wasn’t good enough for his sister. I’ve been possessed by a Traveler spirit. I’ve died several times. I’ve seen my friends turn into vampires, hybrids. I’ve seen so much death all because of the supernatural, even lost my own mother and sister to it. I was almost killed twice when my ex-girlfriends turned into vampires. My friends got hurt because of the supernatural. Mystic Falls had to be cleared of humans when the heretics came to town, they nearly destroyed this city. Same with the whole Cade thing. The freaking devil himself came here and we nearly lost this city,” Matt spewed as tears fell down his eyes. “So yeah, the world is a much safer place without you supernaturals in it, even if it means killing my friends. Killing Caroline.”
“You’re really willing to go after a bunch of kids?” Bella said shocked. “Kill them?”
“Better to kill them now than when they’re at full power, right?” Matt countered wryly. “So yeah, when Tamora Monroe came into Mystic Falls and told me her story and what she’d done, who she was working with and what the mission statement was, I was sold. It’s nothing like I haven’t done before, although this time I’m actually willing to kill people I know.”
“So, why haven’t you?” Isaac asked.
“Because my mission is to observe, investigate and report.”
“And can this town expect another invasion of the hunters any time soon?”
“When they don’t hear from me, yes.”
“How long is their response time?”
“Depends on where they are. Could be days. Weeks,” Matt shrugged. “And they’ll keep coming, even if you kill them all. They’ll all come to Mystic Falls.”
Bella sighed as she looked at Kol. “I’ve changed my mind about him getting killed,” she told him. “I want you to compel him. He needs to call in and tell them that nothing’s wrong here. That he’s stayed the night and investigated but he’s not found anything remotely supernatural. This is just another business ran by ordinary humans in search for a better life for themselves. The families he didn’t see leaving he checked up with, and they usually left at the crack of dawn or when he wasn’t watching, he contacted them and they’re all alive and well and loved the experience at this establishment. And while Argent may be a big name in the hunter community, Isaac’s name change doesn’t have anything to do with the Argents that are around. While Isaac was in France, he decided to get rid of his own name and use a French last name instead; Argent. For Argento, meaning Silver, which is of significance to his family. But, knowing that that name painted a target on his back, he may change it to something else.”
“Anything else, darling?” Kol smiled at her.
“Matt, do they really want to kill all the children at the school that your friends Caroline and Alaric are running?” Bella questioned him.
“Then that school no longer exists, they’ve moved elsewhere.”
“Yeah, I can totally put a cloaking spell over them,” Freya nodded. “You know like in the Harry Potter movies they have whole houses hidden in a row of houses? I can do that for the school.”
“The school is almost connected to this place,” Isaac said. “If I’d ask Peter, they’d dig towards the school and then the children can be dropped off here and move through the tunnels. Parents night? Exactly the same. Or maybe some other location that won’t draw attention to us.”
“I think we can work with that, I mean… yeah,” Freya nodded. “But the school is important, we need to hide it. We’ll deal with the rest around it later. Compel him and send him on his way.”
“Oh, yeah, his truck! Jeremy’s not back with it yet.”
“Well fix that then,” Kol grinned as he made sure Matt looked at him. “Now, Mattie boy, you won’t remember any of this, but you will do as I tell you,” Kol said as he started to compel the sheriff.