Chapter 15

“I’m telling you, she’s going to kill you.”

“You already said that.”

“I’m just saying,” Kai shrugged as he took a bite out of his food. “So when is she going to wake up?”

“I already answered that,” Kol replied frustrated, ready to take a bite out of the witch. “It takes time. Some people wake up faster than others.”

“And when she does, she’s going to kill you,” Kai said in a sing-song voice.

Kol let out a growl. The boy was high on magic and he needed to be patient seeing as he was Bella’s friend but he really wanted to take a bite out of him. But, with Kai present, he didn’t have to go and find a human.

“Get a room,” Bella muttered as she rubbed her eyes, feeling as if she’d been hit by a truck. “Who won?”

“I did, of course,” Kai huffed. “You doubted me?”

Bella sat up to look at him and shook her head. “Of course not,” she replied as she looked around and then found Kol. “Where are we?”

“My family still owns property in Mystic Falls, I decided it would be best to take you here whilst you were unconscious,” Kol said after a moment to think about the words he was going to say. “We’re safe here.”

“Can we go home?”

Kol helped her to get off the bed so she could walk around. He kept his distance, while he couldn’t be killed, Bella could still do some damage if she wanted to. And maybe he was ashamed of what he did. “Not yet,” he sighed. No, he wasn’t ashamed. He wanted Bella around forever, even if she didn’t see their friendship like that yet. “I have to admit something to you, darling, and-”

“You’re going to kill him,” Kai grinned.

“He can’t be killed,” Bella told Kai before looking at Kol and sighed. “Let me guess… you put some of your blood in the coffee you got me, and Kai’s dad killed me.”

“You knew?”

“I knew something was off, because I felt the tiniest bit of magic in my veins when there shouldn’t have been any as Kai took it all,” she told him. “You should have told me,” she added as she walked over to him and took his hand. “I still have a choice?”

Choices. Oh, he hadn’t thought this through. Months ago she wanted to die because of the Cold One troubles, and now that she had died, could permanently die, she could still choose that. It was her choice. And he was going to have to respect that choice. “Yes.”

There had been a time where Bella wished to end it all, but she’d seen how the Mikaelsons were willing to help her with her Cold One problem and she couldn’t just leave Kai on his own with them because Kai was her friend, too. And, as a vampire, Bella could likely take on a Cold One herself. She couldn’t leave Charlie, either, it would break him. No, she was going to see this through. She wasn’t done yet. “Okay,” she nodded and let out a breath. At least, as Kol’s kind of vampire she’d still appear human and wouldn’t have to make excuses for Charlie. She could still have food and didn’t have to hunt down an animal because they could just get blood from a blood bank.

Kol’s face lit up. “Really?”

Bella nodded as she looked at him. “You two need me.”

Both Kol and Kai huffed at that.

“And, I really want to see the end of the Cold Ones.”

“You know,” Kai said as he hopped onto the small dresser and sat down on it, looking at Bella and Kol. “There’s a great chance you’ll retain your siphoning abilities. You’ll become a Heretic and you’ll never have to take magic to make magic ever again. You’d be unstoppable.”

“Or, you could lose your magic like every witch does when they turn,” Kol said. “Are you absolutely sure?”

“Yes,” Bella nodded.

“Good, then I can teach Kai how to make a daylight ring or another piece of jewelry you might like for it,” Kol grinned as he got a knife out of his back pocket and handed it to Kai. “Grab that cup next to you and fill it with some of your blood for Bella to drink and complete her transition.”

“What!”

“You’re the only human here, Kai. Or would I need to go into Mystic Falls and grab someone off the street?” Kol asked sweetly. “It’s for Bella, it’s not as if I will drink it. I already snacked on the way back.”

“Fine,” Kai sighed as he cut his hand and dripped the blood into the cup. “Here I am, I just killed an entire coven of witches because I killed their leader, my father, out of hatred and also out of anger because he killed my friend and now I’m supplying blood to my friend so she can turn into a full vampire. What’s my life become?”

“Oh shush, Kai,” Bella laughed. “I’m very thankful for your blood and I won’t let it go to waste.”

“Without my blood, your boyfriend would have to go out and snatch someone off the street, which you likely won’t like,” Kai pouted. “And I don’t want you to die so.”

“Your sacrifice is greatly appreciated, Kai,” Bella smiled at him before turning her attention back to Kol, whose hand she was still holding. “Are you okay?”

“Why wouldn’t I be?”

Bella jerked her head into Kai’s direction. “His dad snapped your neck.”

“It’s an unpleasant experience, but I’m alright darling,” he responded before letting out a sigh. “Do you forgive me for putting my blood in your coffee as a safety measure? I didn’t want you to die because you have some unfinished business and that even with your death wouldn’t be resolved for those you care about.”

She smiled at him then. “You know, I’d like to stick around anyway. Couldn’t leave you alone with Kai, who knows what trouble you two would get into?”

“Hey!” Kai whined. “I take offense to that!”

“What he said.”

“Why? Why should you two have all the fun, getting into trouble? I want in!” Bella grinned. “Besides, you’re right, even if I’d die, the Cold Ones still could hurt people.”

“And she wants to get into your pants,” Kai remarked as he handed Bella the cup and wiped his hand on his shirt. “Let’s see what’s going to happen. Kol and I already placed our bets. He thinks you’re going to lose your magic, I think you’ll become a heretic. Drink up.”

Maybe Kai was right, maybe there was some sort of spark somewhere, deep down, that she chose to ignore because she wasn’t ready. Maybe. All she knew was that she was comfortable around Kol, she had felt her apprehension fade over the course of the months she’d spent with him. Even now, she was far away from Forks and she wasn’t afraid of the Cold Ones. Kol would protect her, and, if she wanted, she could wipe the floor with them, turned them all into ash.

Or not. She was going to be a vampire now and there was a 50% chance of her losing her magic. Which would be alright.

She was still alive, and Charlie wouldn’t have to mourn her death. She had a chance of being happy for the rest of her life, without the Cold Ones.

However, as she was looking into the cup trying to ignore Kai’s remarks, she could smell his blood, and not just in the cup because he was still bleeding from his hand. Bella hated the smell of blood, usually, but the once coppery smelling liquid now called out to her and she couldn’t help but drink everything to the last drop.

She licked her lips as she could feel the blood warm her body, firing up the magic in her veins as she held out the cup for Kai to put some more blood in it as she looked at him.

“Yeah, she’s looking at me like I’m going to be her next meal. I’ll be downstairs seeing if I can find something edible in the kitchen,” he said as he looked at Kol.

“Our servants usually keep the kitchen well stocked, knock yourself out,” Kol replied, an entertained smile on his lips as he gently placed his hand on Bella’s arm. She was pinking up, good. “He’s not your next meal.”

“I know that,” Bella replied as she longingly watched Kai leave the room. “I just wanted some more, that’s all,” she added as she turned her head to look at Kol. “Can I have some more?”

“Later, darling,” Kol laughed. “Baby steps. The main question is… who won?”

“Huh?”

“Kai or me? Did you retain your magic like he said?”

Of course, she had. She could feel it through her entire body. Nodding, she used her free hand to knock over something on the dresser. “So, what does that mean?”

“That means that you’re a very powerful little vampire,” Kol said, in awe of her. While he had entertained the idea of her becoming a heretic, he had quickly shot it down because it had been a very long time since there had been one. “More than capable of dealing with the Cold Ones on your own.” And then there was that, and he could feel his heart sink. Bella could leave.

“What’s the fun in that?” She playfully countered. “Like I said, I think that the three of us will have a lot of fun.” When she saw the surprised look on Kol’s face, she laughed. “Not like that. I mean… yeah, I still have to deal with my shit. And Kai is still going to need a lot of help and love to be well-adjusted towards people but I’ve realized that he already feels more than a friend to me than my friends from Forks do. And you…”

Oh, that didn’t sound good.

“I’ve had some thoughts about you.”

“And?”

Bella shrugged. “I don’t know yet, but I do know that you’re not in the friend zone like Kai is, I just need some time.”

His face lit up then. “What happened?”

She shrugged again as she looked to the floor, trying so hard not to look him in the eye. “I dunno. Maybe the time we spent in Portland together. Or maybe… death. Realizing that I do want to live and have a great life and that I merely had a very bad experience with guys.”

“People do say that with death comes clarity.”

“Don’t mock me.”

“I’m not,” he let out a snort. “Come, I’ll show you around the house.”

~o.O.o~

Kol wanted to remain in Mystic Falls for a couple of days for Bella to adjust to her new self, and Kol had to admit, she was doing a lot better with being a vampire than a witch. She didn’t want to take a bite out of Kai, and she could behave herself in a supermarket where there were more people.

She found some of her vampire abilities difficult to deal with for the first few days, such as her hearing and getting her to know her own strength, but she was doing fine now. She even had more control over her magic than she had previously, which was something Kol had been worried about.

He couldn’t possibly bring back an unstable vampire/witch hybrid to Forks and have her mortal friends be in danger, but she was alright, and they had made plans to return the next day.

Kai had kept himself busy with baking and cooking, he didn’t want to venture outside the house because, unlike Bella, he couldn’t protect himself without having had a hit of magic and he didn’t want to feel fragile. Bella wanted him in Forks, for a sense of normality. You couldn’t get any more ordinary than Forks.

Bella was driven slightly mad for a couple of hours after her transition because of the sharp hearing and better eyesight, but Kol had managed to distract her by instructing her on how to make her own item that would allow her to walk in daylight. She had chosen for a simple bracelet and while it looked fragile, the additional strengthening spell would make sure she’d never lose it.

Kol wasn’t sure how Klaus was going to react to Bella being a vampire and a witch, but he was confident in knowing that Bella didn’t take any shit from anyone and she wouldn’t allow herself to be used.

For their last evening at the Mikaelson home in Mystic Falls, Kai had cooked them a great meal and afterward Kol took Bella for a stroll. Kai didn’t want to come, citing the fact that he had just killed a bunch of people and that people wouldn’t want him around as a reason. Kol was merely grateful that Kai recognized that Kol wanted to have Bella all to himself.

Perhaps Bella was right about Kai, that, like Kol and his siblings, Kai was doing the morally wrong things for the right reasons. Betrayal and bullying was never a good thing to live with. Kol was the last one to talk about morality, but he could understand Kai’s motives.

They were walking near the river where over a thousand years ago Kol played with his friends, or where he’d get herbs for their settlement’s witch Ayana. “I know I don’t have to warn you about Nik, but I still am going to,” he eventually said. “He has a habit of coveting beings that are unusual and powerful like himself, and he’ll try to manipulate you and likely to drive a wedge between us.”

Bella scoffed. “Why would he do that?”

“Because that’s how he is. Always has been.”

“Well, maybe he’s changed. I mean, he has Myriam now.”

“Perhaps. Likely not. But still.”

She smiled at him then. “Don’t worry, Kol, I won’t let him use me. And if he tries, I’ll tell on him and Myriam will take care of him.”

“Or you could, yourself. Use your magic to break something on his body.”

“And then what? Risk the wrath of Myriam?” Bella laughed. “No thanks!”

Kol smiled then. It was a good thing to know that Bella recognized Myriam’s claim to Klaus. “You’ll never know, she might be the one holding him down for you.”

She looped her arm through Kol’s and sighed. “Don’t worry so much, it’ll be fine. I just hope I won’t squish Charlie when I hug him.”

“Don’t try to eat him, that should be your main worry.”

“Oh! No! What if I do that?!”

“Relax, darling,” he snickered. “You’ll be fine. You’re doing great.”

Bella let out a breath and nodded. She knew this. Of course. She had nothing to worry about. They sat down on a bunch of rocks on comfortable silence before Bella spoke up again. “Why did you ever leave this place? It’s beautiful.”

“Well, aside from my siblings and I killing a bunch of people from our settlement in our initial hunger, and aside from Niklaus doing the same after he triggered his werewolf side, our father killed half the settlement as he tried to kill us, so we ran, and never really looked back until Niklaus wanted to break the curse our mother had placed on him.”

She looked at him and nodded. “That sounds like a valid reason.”

“And when you get to live as long as we have, you’ll find your favourite places, but know, that despite all the fighting, that your family is home. Although I’m not sure if I want to stick around Nik and Myriam for the next few years,” he replied. “I think I’ve adjusted well after my decade stuck in the box. I’d rather be somewhere Nik or Elijah is not so I can stay out of it.”

“Will you take me with you?”

“After we’ve dealt with your Cold One problem, I’ll take you anywhere you’d like,” Kol replied as he put an arm around Bella. “As long as we’re far away from my family.”

“With the occasional trip back to Forks to see my dad?”

“Of course!”

“Then you’ve got yourself a deal,” Bella nodded.

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