Vella called the mayor's office early the next morning to make an appointment to see him. His office had said he wasn't available at first, but Vella told the secretary exactly what she wanted from him. After a minute she came back to the phone and said he would be available at noon.
Damon accompanied Vella to her meeting with the mayor.
Mayor Lockwood had been apprehensive at first, but the sheriff had told the mayor how helpful Damon had been in the past, so he reluctantly let him stay.
Vella kept her calm through the meeting, even though she felt like jumping out of her skin. She made Damon promise to compel her if she became too emotional during the meeting.
The mayor didn't tell Vella much that she didn't already know. He did however, have a journal that was her mother's, which he gave to her.
Vella wanted more, but it seemed like that's all the mayor was going to tell her.
Damon would have liked to have helped Vella, but the mayor was wearing vervain, just like all the members of the Founder's Council.
Before heading home, Vella dropped by the hospital to ask for a leave of absence. She had never taken vacation before, so her superiors didn't have much of an issue with it, especially after Damon compelled various staff members into agreeing with her.
Vella found it highly amusing to watch Damon compelling people, though she wasn't sure why.
When they arrived back at the boarding house after running a few more errands, Damon and Vella went up to Damon's room to read the journal that once belonged to her mother, Vivian. They read it from front to back, but found no useful information.
Vella could sense there was more to the journal, but she didn't know what or why she felt that way.
Vella allowed Stefan and Elena to read the journal as well, but they didn't find anything either.
It wasn't until later that night, that Vella remembered something. She remembered about their family cabin, which she hadn't been to in a few years.
She wasn't sure what made her think of the cabin, or what the significance was, but she intended on finding out.
Vella was upstairs looking through some bags of her belongings that her and Damon had brought back from her house earlier that day, when she noticed something odd. Her jewelry box that her mother had given to her when she turned 16, was slightly cracked, which she assumed was the work of Lilith.
When Vella examined it more closely. she noticed an amber colored gemstone inside that she had never seen before.
Vella instantly knew what it was, it was the gemstone the vampires had been looking for.
Vella was ecstatic, it was one step closer to finding this tomb and ridding themselves of a vampire problem.
If only I had the parchment with the spell and directions, Vella thought.
The gemstone would be the only thing she found that night, however.
The next day, Vella, Damon, Stefan and Elena discussed what they thought they should do next. None of them wanted to jump into this blindly, it was too dangerous. So they all kept looking through Vella's belongings to see if anything else mysteriously showed up.
Vella spent the day reading spells in her mom's spell book. She had only ever cast one spell in her life, the spell to make Damon very interested in her. She even toyed with the thought of telling Damon about that, but she decided on waiting for a better time to tell him. It's not like the spell was still working, so what harm would it do to keep it a secret from him for a little while longer?
Vella wasn't a witch, but she had it in her blood. If she had really wanted to study, she would be able to cast the spells in her mom's book, but she had no inclination or desire.
After speaking with Elena about the spell book, Elena offered to take the book to her friend Bonnie, since she was a witch.
Vella didn't feel comfortable handing the book over to someone she didn't know, so instead Bonnie came over to the boarding house to look at it.
Bonnie couldn't find anything special with the book, but she did find an interesting spell inside. It was a spell that could cause someone to speak to a family member who had passed on in their dreams.
Bonnie had never heard of the spell before and was reluctant to try it, but Vella just felt that this was the right thing to do.
The girls didn't bother to tell Damon or Stefan what they were doing beforehand, they kept it between themselves.
They found a room in the boarding house that would serve their purpose and Bonnie cast the spell on Vella.
None of them were sure it worked, but they would know by the morning.
It was late when Damon and Stefan had returned home that night, so Bonnie and Elena stayed there overnight.
Vella was standing in a small room with a few doors. She looked around but had no idea where she was. Normally she might have panicked not knowing where she was, but she felt safe and peaceful in this room.
Suddenly her mother appeared in front of her. She moved closer but realized she couldn't touch her.
"Sweet Vella I don't have much time," her mother began to say. "You must find the parchment before the vampires do."
"But where is it mom?" Vella asked.
"It's in the family cabin, behind the painting in the main room," her mom answered.
"What do I need to do?"
"You must destroy the gemstone and then cast the spell to open the door to the tomb. Then you must destory all the vampires within, it will be the only way the town will ever be safe. Too many family members of those trapped in the tomb still walk among you," her mom replied with a sense of foreboding.
"But I can't cast any spells mom, I'm not a witch," Vella replied in desperation
"You may not have been taught any magic, but it IS in you. If you must, you will be able to, you just have to believe in yourself."
Vella's mother began to slowly fade away from sight.
Vella cried out, "Mom, please don't go. You can't leave me"
As the image of her mother disappeared, she could hear her say.
"I must go now, I believe in you. Be careful and stay safe, my baby"
As Vella stood there in hopes that her mother would come back she heard her whisper, "I will love you no matter who you are with or what you become. Never forget that."
Vella sat straight up in her bed gasping, suddenly wide awake. Could I have imagined that?
She looked around the room in the dim light of early morning, but everything seemed normal.
Vella startled Damon awake when she jolted upright. He looked at her with a confused but concerned look. "Are you okay?"
Vella grinned at him happily, "Yup. Sorry for waking you up."
Damon shook his head a little with a raised brow. "Why did you jump like that than?"
"Oh, that," Vella said. "I had a strange dream, it just surprised me is all."
Damon watched Vella jump out of the bed and run out of the room acting strangely.
Damon couldn't help but snicker at Vella before he followed her out of the room, she was only wearing her bra and underwear.
When Damon caught up to Vella, she was in the bathroom and seemed to have noticed she wasn't wearing much because she had put on the robe that was usually hanging in the bathroom.
"Seriously Vella, what's going on? Damon asked impatiently.
Vella turned around to face him. She was smiling but at the same time she had tears running down her face. "I will tell you in a bit, I promise."
Damon raised his eyebrow and was about to say something, than changed his mind. He figured Vella would tell him eventually. Instead, he went back to his bedroom to find some clean clothes to wear.
The sun was almost fully up when Vella came back into Damon's room. She still hadn't gotten dressed which excited Damon, he was feeling a bit frisky.
Damon walked up to Vella and brushed the hair away from her neck. He then leaned in to gently kiss at her exposed neck, which brought goosebumps to Vella's skin. Damon suddenly realized how thirsty he was and how bad he wanted to bite Vella right now, so he pulled away quickly.
"What's wrong, Damon?" Vella asked hurtfully. "Did I do something wrong?"
Damon gave her a weak smile. "No my dear, you did everything right, thats the problem."
Vella's look turned from hurt to shocked and then began to blush a little. "Oh!"
Damon didn't want anything more than Vella right now. He picked her up, laid her carefully on the bed and began to kiss her passionately.
Vella was shocked at Damon's loss of self control, it almost scared her. She knew he would be hungry right now.
As Damon's kissing went back to Vella's neck, she pushed him away.
Damon looked right into Vella's eyes, he could see the fear inside her, which was all it took for him to regain control. "I'm so sorry," he whispered.
Vella looked at him with a forgiving smile. "It's okay, Damon. It just happened so fast I wasn't really ready."
"No, it's not okay," Damon said with regret. "I could have hurt you or even kill you, this isn't right."
Damon tried to get up from the bed but Vella kept a hold of him. "But you didn't hurt me. That's all that matters."
Damon's face suddenly turned to one of frustration. "You really don't realize how easy it would be for me to kill you, do you?"
Vella closed her eyes and then opened them before speaking. "I am completely aware of that fact, Mr Salvatore The thing is...it doesn't matter."
Damon opened his mouth to say something, but Vella hushed him.
"I mean it, Damon. I know you will never understand but if that's how I died then I would die happily, instead of...." Vella stopped herself before finishing the sentence.
Damon watched as tears began to spill from Vella's eyes. He really hated doing this to her, she was too good for him.
Damon lifted up her chin so he could look deep into her eyes. "I don't want you to speak of dying because I'm not going to let that happen."
Vella wanted to believe him, but she didn't. There were too many wicked forces at work to believe that. She had already resigned herself to the fact that she would be dying soon, all she wanted was to die happy and not alone.
Damon seemed to know exactly what she had been thinking, because he wrapped his arms around her and pulled her close. "We have each other Vella and I'm not going to give that up so easily."
More tears began to spill from Vella's eyes, but this time happy ones. She knew he was no match for her destiny, but she wasn't going to argue.
They held each other for a short time, until Vella finally broke the silence. "I want you to take some blood from me, Damon. I can tell you are thirsty and you need it."
Damon looked at her about to refuse, but she added, "And I'm not taking no for an answer."
As strong willed as Damon was, he wasn't any match for Vella. She seemed to know exactly what to say and do to influence Damon.
As Damon brushed the hair from Vella's neck, he could feel her shudder. Before he could go any further, Vella begged him to share his blood with her as well.
Damon wanted to refuse, but he wasn't thinking clearly any more. He bit his wrist and offered it to her.
As Vella took Damon's wrist, he pierced the skin in her neck with his razor sharp teeth.
What only took a few minutes, felt like hours to Vella, but the sun gave the time away. It had finally came all the way up and was shining into the room.
Vella and Damon laid in bed for a short while, until they heard someone walking down the hallway.
They both got out of bed, got dressed and headed downstairs.
Stefan was in the livingroom when they walked in. He was reading the newspaper with a look of disdain.
Vella figured there must have been more attacks.
This has to end now. I can't allow more innocent people to get hurt.
Damon sat down beside his brother to see what was up, while Vella walked into the kitchen. She could already smell some food cooking.
Elena and Bonnie were busy making breakfast.
Vella felt guilty for not coming down sooner to help, which made her blush at the thought of why she hadn't.
When the food was done, the three of them sat down at the table and began to eat their breakfast.
Vella was famished, but found it hard to eat knowing what she needed to tell them all.
After they had finished eating, they cleaned up the dishes and decided to head into the livingroom to see what Stefan and Damon were up to.
When the three of them walked in the room, Stefan and Damon were huddled together using hushed voices, which suddenly stopped.
Elena and Bonnie sat down at the loveseat that was across from the couch that Stefan and Damon were sitting at, while Vella sat on a chair beside the couch, trying to avoid Damon's gaze.
Stefan let out a sigh and said, "There was another attack last night. This time there were five victims."
Vella felt a wave of guilt course through her. She had to stop this now.
Vella gathered up all the courage she could muster before she spoke.
"I have some more info." was all Vella managed to get out before she began to shake uncontrollably.
Damon got up from his seat and crouched in front of her. He lifted her chin and looked into her eyes.
Almost instantly Vella felt calm and was able to go on.
"I had a dream last night that my mother came to me," Vella began.
Bonnie and Elena exchanged knowing looks, while Stefan and Damon looked confused.
Vella explained to all of them what her mother had told her in the dream, making sure to mention the part about the spell Bonnie had cast for the benefit of Stefan and Damon, who didn't know anything about the spell.
After she was done, Vella added, "This has to be done right away, I can't live my life in fear anymore. I also can't allow more people in town to die."
The five of them began to discuss various plans, while each one made Vella's stomach feel more upset.
Vella tried real hard to be brave but she wasn't. She knew she was probably living the last day of her life and she wasn't ready for it to end, especially now.
It wasn't long before Vella felt physically ill. She ran from the livingroom, up the stairs, down the hall to the bathroom and began to vomit.
She heard someone coming down the hallway towards the bathroom and yelled, "Don't come in!"
The door swung open and Damon was beside Vella before she could even blink. She tried pushing him away but he wasn't going to move.
Damon grabbed a hold of her, looked her in the eyes and said, "Vella, this isn't helping. I told you I would protect you and I will."
Vella was shaking, crying, screaming and trying to get out of his grip. She was far beyond upset this time, she was inconsolable.
Damon did what he had to do to calm her down. He grabbed her more forcefully, forced her to open her eyes and compelled her.
By this time, Stefan had made it to the bathroom door. He ran in and grabbed Vella's unconcious body from Damon's arms.
"Damon!" Stefan yelled, "What the hell were you thinking?
Damon was squatting down with his head in his hands and he looked as if he was in pain.
Stefan ran quickly and placed Vella in Damon's bed and asked Elena and Bonnie to stay with her, while he went to talk to his brother.
When Stefan entered the bathroom, Damon was still in the same position.
Stefan walked over to his brother and put his hand on his shoulder.
"Damon, what's wrong?" Stefan enquired delicately.
Damon took his hands off his face and flopped himself to the floor. He was staring as if he didn't notice Stefan was there.
Stefan did the only thing he thought might help and slapped Damon hard across the face.
The slap seemed to wake Damon up. He turned his head to face his brother. who had angry tears running down his face.
Stefan had never ever seen Damon so distraught. He wasn't even sure what to say to him.
Damon wiped the tears out of his eyes and turned to face his brother again. "It's Vella, she's so afraid of what's going to happen that I couldn't even compel her to relax. I think I tried too hard cause she passed out."
Stefan patted Damon on the back and tried to reassure him Vella would be okay.
"You don't know that for sure, Stefan!" Damon yelled.
"You're right I don't, but you need to stay strong for her...and for you."
Damon closed his eyes, he knew his brother was right, but he couldn't help himself.
After a quiet minute, Damon turned to his brother and asked, "How do you do it, Stefan?"
Stefan look at his brother with concern, "Do what?"
Damon looked at his brother with a mixture of doubt and gratefulness on his face. "Love. I love her Stefan and it's making me crazy. I have fought for so many years to keep these emotions from doing this to me again. And my humanity, I fought to keep that away too and now look at me!"
Stefan gave his brother a nod of understanding. After all, this is how he felt all the time with Elena.
Damon was afraid of something happening to Vella more than anything. He would never wish a vampire life on her, but he also hated how fragile a mortal's life could be. As much as he gloated about being able to protect her from anything, he knew it wasn't true and feared Vella saw through the act.
Stefan stood by his brother until he knew Damon was okay. As he was about to walk out of the room, Stefan turned around to ask his brother a question. "Damon, have the two of you shared blood again?
Damon looked at his brother shrewdly, which told Stefan all he needed to know. Stefan shook his head disapprovingly and walked out of the bathroom without another word.
Damon got up from the bathroom floor and splashed some cold water on his face. He wasn't quite sure what had gotten into him, but he was going to make it stop now.
Damon walked down the hall to his bedroom, to find Stefan, Elena and Bonnie all there in the room beside Vella's bed. She seemed to be resting peacefully, which made Damon feel a bit better. Bonnie and Elena turned and left the room quickly as Damon walked in, but Stefan stayed.
Damon gave his brother a look of irritation, but Stefan didn't leave. "What is it brother?"
Stefan wanted to say what he had to say to Damon as delicately as possible, but he didn't think he could. "You did this Damon. Obviously your bond with Vella is very strong, maybe too strong. I wouldn't advise doing it again, at least not until the danger has passed. Unless you intend on changing her."
As Stefan was speaking, Damon's face became contorted by rage. He knew his brother was right, but he sure didn't want to be told off like he was a child. He wanted to hit his brother, make him pay, but he wasn't really mad at Stefan, he was mad at himself.
Stefan left the room to give his brother some privacy and to think over their plans for the tomb now that they knew how to get to it.
It was some time later, when Vella came down the stairs escorted by Damon. Everyone pretended that earlier had never happened, which seemed easier on everyone, and they went on making plans.
Vella was a little apprehensive about it all, but she trusted Damon and Stefan would be able to pull it off. She was feeling better after her freak out and subsequent nap, but not well enough to contribute much to the conversation.
They hatched out a final plan, and then the three ladies had some dinner since it was getting late. They had all decided to start early the next morning, so they all went to bed early, except the two brothers.
Stefan and Damon stayed up for a while talking, planning and then they went out hunting. Stefan for his usual diet of animal blood and Damon for his usual diet of human blood.
Damon tried convincing his brother to drink some human blood too, so he would be strong enough to fight these other vampires, but he refused.
After the brother's were finished hunting, they went back to the boarding house and got some sleep.