Home > Midnight (The Vampire Diaries: The Return #3)(14)

Midnight (The Vampire Diaries: The Return #3)(14)
Author: L.J. Smith

You shouldn't be up so late, you know."

Bonnie started and bit her lip.

"I hope you're not stil hurting,"she said coldly, very much on her dignity, which she suspected was not very convincing.

But what was she supposed to do?

The truth was that Bonnie had absolutely no chance of winning a duel of wits with Damon - and she knew it.

Damon wanted to say, "Hurting? To a vampire, a human fleabite like that was..."

But unfortunately he was a human too. And it did hurt.

Not for long, he promised himself, looking at Bonnie.

"I thought you never wanted to see me again,"she said, chin trembling. It almost seemed too cruel to make use of a vulnerable little redbird. But what choice did he have?

I'l make it up to her somehow, someday - I swear it, he thought. And at least I can make it pleasant now.

"That wasn't what I said,"he replied, hoping that Bonnie wouldn't remember exactly what he had said. If he could just Influence the trembling woman-child before him...but he couldn't. He was a human now.

"You told me you would kil me."

"Look, I'd just been knocked down by a human. I don't suppose you know what that means, but it hasn't happened to me since I was twelve years old, and stil an original human boy."

Bonnie's chin kept trembling, but the tears had stopped. You are bravest when you're scared, Damon thought.

"I'm more worried about the others,"he said.

"Others?"Bonnie blinked.

"In five hundred years of life, one tends to make a remarkable amount of enemies. I don't know; maybe it's just me. Or maybe it's the simple little fact of being a vampire."

"Oh. Oh, no!"Bonnie cried.

"What does it matter, little redbird? Long or short, life seems al too brief."

"But - Damon - "

"Don't fret, kitten. Have one of Nature's remedies."Damon pul ed out of his breast pocket a smal flask that smel ed unquestionably of Black Magic.

"Oh - you saved it! How clever of you!"

"Try a taste? Ladies - strike that - young women first."

"Oh, I don't know. I used to get awful y sil y on that."

"The world is sil y. Life is sil y. Especial y when you've been doomed six times before breakfast."Damon opened the flask.

"Oh, al right!"Clearly thril ed by the notion of "drinking with Damon,"Bonnie took a very dainty sip.

Damon choked to cover a laugh. "You'd better take bigger swigs, redbird. Or it's going to take al night before I get a turn."

Bonnie took a deep breath, and then a deep draft. After about three of those, Damon decided she was ready.

Bonnie's giggles were nonstop now. "I think...Do I think I've had enough now?"

"What colors do you see out here?"

"Pink? Violet? Is that right? Isn't it nighttime?"

"Wel , perhaps the Northern Lights are paying us a visit. But you're right, I should get you into bed."

"Oh, no! Oh, yes! Oh, no! Nonono yes!"

"Shh."

"SHHHHHH!"

Terrific, Damon thought; I've overdone it.

"I meant, get you into a bed,"he said firmly. "Just you. Here, I'l walk you to the first-floor bedroom."

"Because I might fal on the stairs?"

"You might say that. And this bedroom is much nicer than the one you share with Meredith. Now you just go to sleep and don't tel anyone about our rendezvous."

"Not even Elena?"

"Not even anybody. Or I might get angry at you."

"Oh, no! I won't, Damon: I swear on your life!"

"That's - pretty accurate,"Damon said. "Good night."

Moonlight cocooned the house. Fog misted the moonlight. A slender, hooded dark figure took advantage of shadows so skil ful y that it would have passed unnoticed even if someone had been watching out for it - and no one was.

Chapter 7

Bonnie was in her new first-floor bedroom, and was feeling very bewildered. Black Magic always made her feel giggly, and then very sleepy, but somehow tonight her body refused to sleep. Her head hurt.

She was just about to turn the bedside light on, when a familiar voice said, "How about some tea for your headache?"

"Damon?"

"I made some from Mrs. Flowers's herbs and I decided to make you a cup as wel . Aren't you the lucky girl?"If Bonnie had been listening closely, she might have heard something almost like self-loathing behind the light words - but she wasn't.

"Yes!"Bonnie said, meaning it. Most of Mrs. Flowers's teas smel ed and tasted good. This one was especial y nice, but grainy on her tongue.

And not only was the tea good, but Damon stayed to talk to her while she drank it al . That was sweet of him.

Strangely, this tea made her feel not exactly sleepy, but as if she could only concentrate on one thing at a time. Damon swam into her field of view. "Feeling more relaxed?"he asked.

"Yes, thank you."Weirder and weirder. Even her voice sounded slow and dragging.

"I wanted to make sure nobody was too hard on you for the sil y mistake about Elena,"he explained.

"They weren't, real y,"she said. "Actual y everybody was more interested in seeing you and Matt fight - "Bonnie put a hand over her mouth. "Oh, no! I didn't mean to say that! I'm so sorry!"

"It's al right. It should heal by tomorrow."

Bonnie couldn't imagine why anyone would be so afraid of Damon, who was so nice as to pick up her mug of tea and say he'd put it in the sink. That was good because she was feeling as if she couldn't get up to save her life. That cozy.

That comfy.

"Bonnie, can I ask you just one little thing?"Damon paused. "I can't tel you why, but...I have to find out where Misao's star bal is kept,"he said earnestly.

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