nrgburst: (sad caroline)
[personal profile] nrgburst
Title: A bird in a cage; a slant on the subject
Fandom: The Vampire Diaries (TV series)
Characters: Caroline, Tyler, Katherine (Caroline/Tyler)
Word Count: Just over 1000
Rating: K/G
Summary: Caroline reflects on life without Tyler; Tyler and Katherine disagree. 



She tries to keep busy. Blood bag runs, prom dress shopping, choreographing cheer routines, making casseroles- these are things she can accomplish. There’s something soothing about chopping innocent vegetables into bite-sized pieces and stocking her “special drawer” in the fridge; syncing stunts and making sure their team has the routines down pat; systematically eliminating dress choices and hair styles. And on the surface, everything is fine- the house is impeccable; her college and scholarship applications have all been sent; her extracurriculars are all proceeding on schedule.

But she can’t help thinking of Tyler constantly. This wasn’t how it was supposed to go- this isn’t what it’s like in movies when young couples are in love. There’s a giant hole in her life where he’s supposed to be and she can’t get used to the radio silence, to the not knowing. And it’s not only worrying about him and heartbreak over being torn apart- she just doesn’t have anybody here to open up to. Her mom would just get hurt or worse trying to be Sheriff and take charge of the situation, and Stefan’s focused on Elena. And now there’s no way to keep everything from spiralling out of control- Katherine came out of nowhere and grabbed the Cure, Silas killed Jeremy and is lurking out there somewhere, everyone keeps listening to Damon and that evil hag Rebekah, Elena and Bonnie are acting crazy and none of them are talking at all anymore.

She can’t list or manage their way out of this, plot any sort of strategy except to hope it all blows over; that everybody just comes to their senses and stops fighting.

So she curls up on her side of the bed and texts her speeches to Tyler’s number, ignoring the error messages she gets back. She just needs to pretend he’s listening, and hope that someday they can laugh about the craziness in retrospect.

They have forever. They just have to find a way.

For the millionth time she wishes she could have gone with him; that Klaus could have let them both slip away.

Instead she’s here letting him stalk and sniff at her because every minute he’s here means another minute Tyler gets on his head start, another minute nobody else dies. They killed Kol, trapped Klaus and plotted to Cure and then kill him. He’s showing his forgiveness and compassion as long as she behaves. So she can’t fail, she can’t flinch; she’s got to be the perfect Miss Mystic version of herself.

She hates how she was so smug about being his obsession. Now she finally gets why Elena switched it all off, why she kept trying to send Jeremy away.

Being the One Special Girl is like walking a tightrope. One slip and it might all end, not just for her but for everybody.

And it’s so exhausting now that she doesn’t have anybody to lean on anymore.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
He’s already having second thoughts- Katherine makes him uncomfortable. She’s waiting outside the bank at the airport and he doesn’t bother to ask how she found him. He just sighs, adjusts the weight of his pack and trudges up to the bench where she’s sitting, legs crossed. She smells annoyed, and her foot is bobbing up and down in this antsy way.

“I thought you were trying not to get caught.”

“Figured I’d need cash and the account’s under a fake name. He can’t track what he doesn’t know about.”

“Betting on him not finding anything tied to you is foolhardy. You’re a vampire, Tyler. Take what you need from your prey and then erase the evidence. The best targets are older- they’ve had more time to save up. Not quite as tasty though,” she adds, wrinkling her nose.

He frowns and gives her a disgusted look. “I’m not stealing people’s money.”

She gives him a derisive smirk before slinging her leather bag over her shoulder. “Judgey, judgey. Don’t you know how the Lockwoods got so rich? I’ll give you a clue- most Founding families doubled their land holdings in 1864 after the vampires were all entombed.”

“What?”

“And you think your trust fund dividends come from corporations without sweatshops and factories that pay slave wages? Don’t be so naïve.”

“…Did Mason…?” he starts, surprised, before stopping and shaking his head. “…Look, I’m just trying to do what’s right.”

She tilts her head and smiles. “And I’m just pointing out that there are almost no “right” choices.”

“…Fine. But I’m not going to take money from little old ladies when I’ve got my own.”

She stands up and steps into his personal space so he has to take a step back. “You’re immortal, Tyler. You think your trust fund will last forever? Vampires have been doing this for centuries. In fact, the Mikaelsons take a certain pride in stealing from royalty.”

He makes a face when he hears that, but he gives her a look and explains. “I’m not living it up- my mom taught me how to manage money, okay? And maybe she didn’t think about the ethics or whatever, but I guess I can.”

“Being a stick in the mud can be fatal, you know. Things tend to snap under pressure,” she snarls.

He gives her a cocky smile, meeting her eyes. “Well, you’re only stuck with me until we get Klaus. And I won’t need to visit another bank for a while, so hopefully this’ll be quick. Where are we going, anyway?”

She exhales. “Canada. Easier to blend in and then get back across the border. Are you going to whine about morals again if I compel us into first class?”

He shrugs and looks down at her luggage. “Probably empty seats there anyway. You want a hand with these?”

That makes her smile despite herself. She tilts her head and gives him an appraising look, considering.

“You’ll do, Lockwood.”
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

A/N: Just wanted to say that this fic will probably end up AU, in case that isn’t your cup of tea. And sorry, I can’t seem to keep myself from making social commentary in my chaptered fics. :P

 

Date: 2013-03-10 02:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] blackcanine.livejournal.com
Your depiction of Caroline's role in all the Klaroline is spot on. Tyler and Katherine, as usual, rocking it. Great chapter! :D

PS. Have you read how Plec defines the dynamic between Caroline and Klaus?

We haven’t seen the end of the strange and somewhat perverse and beautiful and horrific and amazing and awful dynamic between Caroline and Klaus. Even if the spin-off does happen and we have two shows, I don’t predict that that would be the end of that relationship.

Goosebumps.

ETA. I don't mind the AU at all. I think we all need some serious amount of fix-it AUs for some reason or another.
Edited Date: 2013-03-10 02:48 pm (UTC)

Date: 2013-03-10 03:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jessie-2009.livejournal.com
Can you message me your suspicion on how they might draw out klaroline? Just curious.

Date: 2013-03-10 02:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] txgirl0302.livejournal.com
Caroline is in full on neurotic control freak mode. It breaks my heart that she wishes she could just fix everything, how she misses her friends and Tyler's presence in her life and the sacrifice she makes by remaining behind. Poor baby girl. I can't wait for her to get word from Tyler.

I cannot get enough of Tyler and Katherine. I absolutely love the way you write them. And I LOVE Katherine calling out how the Lockwoods got their wealth and mocking Tyler for it. I love that he is still not having any of it and is trying to remain true to himself and do the right thing. Tyler tries to hold on to the little things that are familiar to him, to try and survive the best way he knows how and there is the ultimate survivor telling him that his tactics will eventually get him killed. ALL MY TYLER-KATHERINE FEELS.

Gosh I love those two. "You want a hand with these?" "You'll do, Lockwood." *Flails*

I can't wait for more!

Date: 2013-03-10 04:29 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] txgirl0302.livejournal.com
You are most welcome! :)

I hope so as well, but I don't have much faith. I think the rest of the season is going to focus more on the Originals and Elena's lack of humanity. RME. I think Caroline will continue to be portrayed as the bad guy by the fandom.

They're just too different- but you know that Katherine is looking at Tyler's stubborn morality with disdain that is tinted with grudging admiration, and he feels the same way about her ruthlessness.

Yes, that is exactly how it is and how it's coming across.

I hope your baby gets well soon. Don't worry about other stuff, focus on your kiddo. :)

Date: 2013-03-10 05:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] blackcanine.livejournal.com
That's what I love about how you write Tyler and Katherine. It's like they see something in the way the other behaves and goes about life that they'd want to do themselves, but don't because that would imply changing their world view and, with survival being their main priority, they simply can't afford to do that. And that's an endless source of conflict between them that's delicious to read.

BTW, I'd love to know your suspicion about Klaroline too. :P

Date: 2013-03-10 09:21 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jessie-2009.livejournal.com
Instead she’s here letting him stalk and sniff at her because every minute he’s here means another minute Tyler gets on his head start, another minute nobody else dies. They killed Kol, trapped Klaus and plotted to Cure and then kill him. He’s showing his forgiveness and compassion as long as she behaves. So she can’t fail, she can’t flinch; she’s got to be the perfect Miss Mystic version of herself.

She hates how she was so smug about being his obsession. Now she finally gets why Elena switched it all off, why she kept trying to send Jeremy away.

Being the One Special Girl is like walking a tightrope. One slip and it might all end, not just for her but for everybody.


I loved this part. Season 1 Caroline wanted to be the one and to be wanted, but now she sees just how terrible it is. She went from being flattered by his attention and not thinking it was that big of a deal because she didn't feel the same way. She loved Tyler and didn't want to be Klaus, so what was the harm if he had a thing for her. But Klaus being obsessed with her is different than it would be if someone else had a thing for her. Now she's stuck and can't leave and get away from him. She's stuck until he lets go of this obsession. And she can't fight back because look what happened last time. She stood up to him and he stabbed her with a pole, bit her, and didn't save her until she was moments from death. And on top of all that, the one person that she wants to talk about it to isn't there. The one person she could just be herself around is gone. I really think this whole thing woke her up to how serious this was. I mean clearly she always knew he was dangerous, but I don't think she really ever knew how dangerous his obsession with her was until now.

She tries to keep busy. Blood bag runs, prom dress shopping, choreographing cheer routines, making casseroles- these are things she can accomplish. There’s something soothing about chopping innocent vegetables into bite-sized pieces and stocking her “special drawer” in the fridge; syncing stunts and making sure their team has the routines down pat; systematically eliminating dress choices and hair styles. And on the surface, everything is fine- the house is impeccable; her college and scholarship applications have all been sent; her extracurriculars are all proceeding on schedule.

I loved her keeping herself busy, organizing, typical Caroline, to distract herself from what's really wrong. It's very in character and just great.

I really am enjoying how you are writing the Tyler/Katherine dynamic.

Great job, I'm really enjoying these chapters:)


Will there be any Caroline/Tyler contact in the next chapter or will that be later on?


Date: 2013-03-10 10:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] 12-12-12.livejournal.com
I continue to enjoy this muchly! I think this was my favorite part:

Being the One Special Girl is like walking a tightrope. One slip and it might all end, not just for her but for everybody.

And it’s so exhausting now that she doesn’t have anybody to lean on anymore.


I love the sense of how at the beginning Caroline's in hyper-drive trying to hold it all together, but there is just this huge hole there that nothing can fill and it's different from the last time Tyler was gone when she knew he was coming back, she really doesn't have anyone to lean on or talk to the way he was there for her, and she's just. So. Tired. Also love her self-loathing about her initial smugness when it came to Klaus's obsession with her--it's just so Caroline. Poor bb.

Also love the little reference to Tyler being able to smell Katherine's annoyance, and her knowing about his trust fund--the callback to Mason was great. Can't wait to see where this goes!

Date: 2013-03-11 04:34 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] swirlsofblue.livejournal.com
Absolutely loving this series, the way you decribe Caroline's quandry is perfect and I love the Katherine Tyler interaction, brilliantly smart and humourous.

Saturday, March 9, 2016 - TVD Newsletter #216

Date: 2013-03-16 06:33 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] livejournal.livejournal.com
User [livejournal.com profile] ellensmithee referenced to your post from Saturday, March 9, 2016 - TVD Newsletter #216 (http://tvdnewsletter.livejournal.com/67540.html) saying: [...] by , PG-13, Elena + Bonnie + Caroline A bird in a cage; a slant on the subject [...]

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