Thank you theeroyalty :) You’re far too kind! I enjoyed writing this. I’ve never tried Elijah’s POV before so it was a lovely new challenge.
It had started in Mystic Falls, apparently. Not that he would know; God forbid should one of his siblings inform him of their half-brother - brother (he had never referred to Niklaus as anything but and he wouldn’t start doing so now) - having fallen in love with a beautiful blonde vampire when there was gossip about the doppelgänger or the quarterback to share.
“That’s Caroline Forbes, from Mystic Falls fame. You know, the Sheriff’s daughter? Rumour has it, Nik was infatuated with her. Bought her gifts, drew her stuff, allowed her and her friends to live even when they went against him simply to stay in her good graces - the usual ‘boy meets girl’ shenanigans, just Nik-style.”
Elijah had rolled his eyes at Kol’s blasé explanation of who the lady Niklaus was currently sitting with at a table on the balcony of the bar they were in. She had seemed vaguely familiar, and if the gentle and sweet words that spilt from his brother’s lips were anything to go by, he knew her well too.
He mulled the words over in his mind as he watched them discreetly from their booth on the main floor, sipping his whiskey and ignoring Kol’s obvious amusement at the situation. Caroline seemed at ease with the hybrid; more so than any other vampire ever should. Niklaus was still a dangerous man, taking everything and anything he wanted without a care in the world for anyone else. It was how they had captured New Orleans once again.
“And she never gave in to his attempts to… woo her?” Elijah asked curiously, uncertain on where Caroline fitted in with their plans (and possibly their family).
“Struck up some sort of friendship, I think? But she was with that Lockwood hybrid back then,” Kol replied with a grimace and shrug. “Why don’t you go ask Rebekah? She would be more informative.”
“She’s not here at the moment,” he told him sharply, carrying on before the younger Mikaelson left. “I’m surprised Niklaus didn’t simply compel her or-”
“-emotionally blackmail the most human vampire you’ll ever meet?” Kol interrupted, arching a brow to challenge the one Elijah had raised in annoyance. Smirking, Kol leaned in over the table and lowered his voice as if telling him a secret. “I told you, Nik fancied himself in love with her. Wanted to do right by her and all that blah, blah, blah.”
Sighing exasperatedly, Elijah nodded tightly and peered back up at the couple in question. Caroline had turned up on their doorstep that afternoon, asking for Niklaus with a couple of bags in hand. He had shown her in and informed her that the man she was after was currently in on Bourbon St, and he could have someone take her to him if she told him why she was there.
Caroline was smart, Elijah would have to give her that. After smiling politely, she had left on her own accord, insisting she could follow her ‘heightened vampire senses towards the nearest place with alcohol and wolves’. He had to admit, he had chuckled at that once she had left.
Swallowing the last of his whiskey, he smiled softly (and with a hint of relief and perhaps some excitement) when he saw Niklaus take Caroline’s hand in his own two to caress it tenderly before pressing a kiss to the back of it. There seemed to be an adoring smile lighting up his features non-stop, now hidden behind the safety of her hand as he allowed it to linger near his lips.
Elijah waited for Caroline to rip her hand back, undoubtedly perturbed by his frank and rash actions, but it never came. If anything, the light blush and the way her own fingers curled around Niklaus’ told him that, perhaps, his brother had finally found his light.
“No, no, Caroline, love. Rooks move horizontally or vertically. Its the bishops that can move diagonally,” Klaus corrected her, moving her rook back to the square it had began on and tapping the bishops in question.
“You mean, like this?” she asked innocently, moving her bishop until it hit his King. Picking up the chess piece, she held it up between then as she grinned excitedly. “Did I just win?”
He nodded concedingly with a smile that was a mix of pride and disbelief. “Congratulations,” he offered, leaning back in his chair and crossing his arms. Caroline eyed him suspiciously, making him shrug and simply murmur, “Beginner’s luck.”
Laughing openly, she shook her head and replaced the king back onto the chessboard. “Oh really? Lets go again, hybrid.”
Elijah pushed back from the railings as Rebekah approached and straightened his suit. He had been innocently strolling around the upper floor of their French Quarter home when he had heard the now-familiar low chuckle that he had gotten use to whenever Niklaus spent time with Caroline.
Stopping and peering over the balcony, a surprised smile had curved onto his features as he spotted the two sitting at a table on the opposite side from him, a chess game in play between them. It was clear Niklaus was teaching her how to play, and it was very clear that he was taking full advantage of being able to touch her whenever showing her the different chess pieces and how they moved.
Rebekah joined him in the observing as Caroline set up the chessboard once again with Niklaus watching her adoringly. She sighed loudly, settling onto the balcony as she softly admitted, “I’ve never seen him look at anyone the way he looks at Caroline; like she holds the entire world and the stars in her hands. She probably holds his heart, at the very least, whether she knows it or not.”
“She knows,” Elijah replied, earning himself a questioning glance from the blonde next to him at his matter-of-fact tone. Pursing his lips, he nodded towards the vampire in question. “That is not the look of someone who does not know the great power they have over one of the most fearsome creatures on this planet.”
Turning to face him, Rebekah furrowed her brow in suspicious as she tried to read him. “You’re worried she might use it against him? Us?”
Shaking his head, Elijah smiled. “Not at all, sister. I’m worried she might not use it,” he explained. He had already seen the subtle changes in Niklaus in the month Caroline had been in their city, and they were changes for the good. They were changes he wanted to make for her, and changes Elijah fully supported.
He hadn’t seen or heard his brother laugh as genuinely as he did with Caroline in many centuries, nor had he ever put anyone else’s happiness before his. She could ask him for the moon and he’d find a way to bring it to her, werewolf gene be damned. There was no question about Niklaus’ love for her; only if it would be reciprocated one day.
Rebekah’s dry, sharp laugh caught his attention once again, breaking out of his thoughts. “Always looking for a way to save him; for redemption. Tell me, ‘Lijah; what has Nik done, exactly, to deserve it?” she asked spitefully, narrowing her eyes in disdain.
“He’s fallen in love,” he simply replied, watching as she simply stared at him, unimpressed and unhappy with his answer. Clasping his hands together, he leant his arms onto the balcony and relaxed against it. “Nothing will ever make up for his millennia of sins, but doesn’t mean the next millennia should be spent in the same way.”
Silence fell between them as his words settled onto her, contemplating what they truly meant. “I’ve fallen in love too, you know. And you want to know what Nik did about that?” she finally said; quiet, sad yet harsh. Elijah simply bowed his head. He not only knew what Niklaus had done, but he hadn’t exactly gone to great lengths to stop him. He was as guilty as Rebekah held their brother to be. “Exactly.”
When Elijah finally replied, it stopped her in her actions when he began to walk away. “Out of curiosity, who is the gentleman you’ve been spending your recent evenings with, Rebekah?” he asked, tone detached even as a smile played on his lips at her incredulous look.
It was obvious that she hadn’t thought they had noticed who she had been spending time and nights with (silly presumption, of course; the girl had three older brothers), but his statement said more than that. Not only did they know, but they were leaving her and her new beau alone to enjoy their relationship for the time being.
Of course, Elijah could see the cogs turning in her mind, realising that Niklaus would never have allowed her such a privilege on his own terms.
“None of your business,” Rebekah huffed, wiping the surprise off her face and holding her head up high as she walked away and left him to go back to his observations.
Slowly, Elijah realised he was starting to considering Caroline as part of their family. She got on well with them all (barring Rebekah, with whom she had a tentative friendship), and even spent time individually with them doing things they enjoyed. She would sit with him and ask questions about their past, or accompany him on walks through the gardens, bayous (much to Niklaus’ dismay) and the city. They even played chess on the days she couldn’t pin down her usual opponent.
She would go out to a club with Kol, or even be his ‘wingman’ (Elijah would never get use to the slang of the 21st Century) when needed. When they were on even footing, Caroline and Rebekah could spend hours shopping, gossiping, pampering themselves and sometimes even simply sit in front of the TV for hours on end with junk food surrounding them.
Yet, he always noticed the time she spent with Niklaus the most. The way he would suggest they attended an event going on in the Quarter, perhaps go try out a new restaurant he had heard of, and even short road trips to nearby towns and cities if he had business there and could use her company. Or the way he would readily agree to a request she made to teach her how to defend herself more efficiently, to have coffee with her at Café du Monde, or simply let her watch him paint.
They spent more time together than most couples did, and though the physical aspects to it were yet to occur (or so he assumed), their relationship could not be called platonic in any way or form. As modest and noble as he was, even Elijah could see the obvious flirting, lingering touches and constant need to be with one around as something romantic. Niklaus was a possessive man to a fault (his paranoia made him so, to protect those he loved with the utmost jealousy), and Caroline was no exception to this behaviour. He had only hoped it wouldn’t drive her away.
But when he shifted his perspective, he started to notice something else. Something much more thrilling yet reassuring (something that told him she was here to stay). Caroline’s eyes sought out Niklaus every time she entered a room where he might be.
Elijah suspected it was an unconscious action, but it spoke volumes to him. If she was now mimicking the same habits as his brother, there might be a chance she felt for him to the same degree as his brother did for her. However, from what he had seen, Niklaus seemed to love with all the passion of a man starved of such affection for a thousand years, and this young vampire wore her (slightly guarded) heart on her sleeve.
It started off with averted glances and pointed coughs, clearing of throats or purposely loud footsteps whenever Elijah entered a room where the two of them were alone. More likely than not, they were sharing affection in one way or another. Not that he was a prude (a thousand years didn’t leave much room for him to be one and he didn’t even want to think about what he had seen of his siblings throughout the years) but there was something so intimate about the way Caroline and Niklaus were with each other when they thought no-one else was watching that it was nearly painful to break them apart.
Eventually, Caroline had moved into Niklaus’ room and, when the teasing by his younger siblings at their expense got too embarrassing for the vampire, he had gotten the room spelled to be soundproofed as soon as the door was shut.
After that, their displays of affection were not always subtle or kept to themselves. Elijah had lost count the number of times he had excused himself (though his words had fallen on deaf ears) when the two were caught in a world of their own in the corner of a booth at the bar; giggling, laughing, kissing and even nuzzling.
Then, a year after she had first turned up on their doorstep and ten months after starting their relationship, he witnessed a milestone in their relationship; one he wasn’t coy to admit.
Elijah smiled at the book he was reading in the library when he accidentally overheard Caroline confess her love for Niklaus. It was sweet and simple, but he knew even Niklaus was surprised by it. It was clear for them all to see that he was in love with her, and though Elijah had reassured his brother that she felt the same way during a few of their late night drinking sessions, he knew having actual proof was what the hybrid needed to be rest assured.
Elijah raised a brow as Caroline joined him and Rebekah for breakfast. It was unusual for the vampire to be at the table; her breakfast was usually delivered to her on a tray in bed (Niklaus was always the early riser) or waiting for her in the kitchen when she finally came downstairs on the days where New Orleans business had taken Niklaus away. Though there were mornings where they would emerge together for breakfast, or brunch by the time they made it out, with content looks and secretive smiles between them where no amount of spells could truly hide what had transpired.
“Dress fitting today,” Rebekah supplied for him without needing the question to be posed, not glancing up from her phone as Caroline took the seat opposite her. “She’s nervous.”
“I’m not-” Caroline began defensively, glaring up at her from where she was pouring herself a glass of orange juice, giving up halfway with a deflated sigh. “Yeah, ok, I’m nervous. They better not have messed anything up! The wedding is only three months away which leaves almost no time to set things right.”
Rebekah put her phone down next to her plate and shook her head. “Not going to happen. They’re the best dressmakers and seamstresses in the tristate area; our dresses are fine with them. Trust me, I’m not risking spending the day in a horribly designed outfit,” she reassured her, words serious and passionate, causing Caroline to tilt her head as she smiled at her saccharinely.
“‘Cause my wedding is all about you, huh, ‘Bekah?” she asked sarcastically, earning herself a similar smile in reply.
“You know it,” the Original retorted coolly.
Shaking her head, Caroline decided to let it go (she would be spending most of the day with the other blonde as it was) and faced Elijah next to her as she reached for the bowl of fruit.
“You have all the instructions and details for the suits, right, Elijah?” she asked him, trying to seem nonchalant but he could detect the anxiety behind it.
“Yes, Caroline. I know all the details by heart, and if not, I’m sure I am capable of retrieving the email, text messages or the notes on my phone,” he assured her lightly, a smile dancing around his mouth. She bit her lip bashfully and nodded her head once.
“Right, sorry. I just need it to be perfect and the bride isn’t allowed to go shopping for the groom’s clothes or the rest of the party,” she explained, waving the hand which held her fork as she took a break to swallow before carrying on, much to Elijah’s amusement (as her tendency to mimic teenage behaviour usually did). “Which is stupid, because hello - who else is able to plan it out like the bride can?”
“You’re babbling, love,” Niklaus announced teasingly as he entered the room, pressing a kiss to Caroline’s cheek as he passed her by to the empty chair next opposite Elijah. The empty chair next to him was left for Kol; the late riser (if he was home at all). “Morning.”
“Morning,” Caroline replied, scrunching up her nose as she eyed him. He was dressed in a slightly paint-splattered top and jeans, and Elijah could smell the turpentine from where he was. “You need to shower and change before you go.”
Niklaus rolled his eyes as he made himself a plate. “I was planning on it, sweetheart. I might not be able to plan a wedding like the bride, but I am competent in looking after myself,” he joked, making Rebekah laugh and exchanging smiles with Elijah himself. Caroline, however, simply scowled half-hearted.
“Could’ve fooled me,” she huffed into her juice.
Raising a challenging brow at his brother, Elijah kept quiet and drank his coffee as he picked up the newspaper next to him. Their conversation carried on (with Caroline repeating the instructions she had told him earlier) but he faded out as he focused on the plans for the week. With the impending nuptials only a few months away, the whole family had their own roles in the first Mikaelson wedding.
It still took a while to get his head around the fact that it would be Niklaus who was getting married first every time he thought about it. If he had had to bet, he would have put the entire family fortune on Rebekah. Thankfully, he hadn’t; Caroline would not have been impressed with having to constantly use compulsion.
The low sound of Niklaus growling deep in his throat caused him to peer over the top of his paper to see what he had missed. A frown pulled at the hybrid’s features as Caroline and Rebekah conversed in rapid-fire sentences back and forth; all about Niklaus’ appearance and the changes needed to be done before the ceremony.
Elijah smirked and went back to his paper when he saw his frown transform into a petulant pout when Caroline finally informed her fiancé of what she expected him to do. Niklaus agreed with a sigh and an ‘if you insist, my love’. It still amazed Elijah to see his brother compromise or do things he wouldn’t usually do simply because Caroline asked.
Their family were closer because of it; because of her. They spent more time together and quarrelled less (they were siblings after all; fighting came with the territory). Caroline even got Kol to own up to his responsibilities, however little and futile they were. It was something even he, as the eldest, couldn’t do.
But the best thing Elijah could ever thank her for was the lack of dagger threats that had passed through Niklaus’ lips and aimed at one of them in the recent past. Without the constant fear of him, he had seen Rebekah relax into the family and not once bring up wanting to leave. And to think, it was all thanks to the young, blonde vampire had turned up on their doorstep with a couple of bags in hand four years ago.