Disclaimer: See chapter one
Chapter Two: Klaus/Known Unknown Mysteries
Gwen woke up to thumps coming from downstairs, groaning she pulled herself up to get herself a drink, planning more sleep soon after. Walking to the kitchen she stopped en route seeing Elena and an awake, still grey and moving Elijah in the front doorway. Eyes switching from one to the other she said tiredly "I don't know what this is about or why it's happening and I really don't want to know. I won't say anything unless I'm asked but don't involve me unless you want to wake up covered in honey and feathers. I wasn't awake." Then turned and walked away still half-asleep.
"Good to see you Gwendoline." Elijah said quietly.
"It's Gwen, Raggedy-man." She replied yawning but not stopping, "don't forget to change suits, nothing brown." Then she was gone with both Elena and Elijah watching after her.
"You know Gwen? How?" Elena demanded with curiosity, thinking 'was there anyone who didn't know her?'.
"Yes I know Gwendoline, last I saw her she was trying to get me into a pair of jeans ironically." Elijah replied.
"She hasn't gone back in time yet, how is that ironic?" She asked
Elijah just smiled, "Let's go before she hears me call her her name once more, I want to prevent my nickname for as long as possible Elena." To which he turned from the house. Elena quietly turned to grab shoes, a sweater and her jacket and some blood for Elijah then walked out to her car where he waited.
"Can't be as bad as mine." She said scathingly.
Elijah smiled at Gwen's ability to not get along with the girl when he saw everyone else doing so, "Why, what is yours?" he asked.
"Princess Bore" Elena spat out as she drove away from the boarding house, Elijah just smiled. Gwen watched them leave from her window, as she shook her head she turned and went back to bed.
After a good sleep-in she walked down the stairs hearing Stefan go on about where Elena is, rubbing the sleepy dust from her eyes she saw Damon and his girlfriend-thing making out and being all cutesy. She groaned "Urgh, yuck. Fratello please don't do that in front of me, it's gross. I'm going to have to gouge out my eyes and bleach them to be able to see again but that image will scar me forever." She said all this with big hand gestures but still covering her eyes then continued on the way to the kitchen for breakfast. Damon continued but rolled his eyes.
"What are you doing? She's not a wind-up toy?" Stefan said.
"Really none of your business is it Stefan," replied Andie.
"Yeah, what she said." Damon agreed.
Gwen came out with a cup of tea half done, "Once again 'ew' Blue eyes, and Stefan check the basement" then turned to finish her tea so she might have some peace and an appetite.
Minutes later the brothers came into the kitchen, Damon with a blood bag, "How did you know Gwen?" Stefan demanded as she cut some fruit into pieces for a salad.
"Came down for a drink they were both at the door, told them I didn't want anything to do with it and got called Gwendoline by Raggedy-Man for my troubles" she shrugged, "want some salad for breaky?" as Damon stole some melon.
"Sure, with yogurt not cream" said Damon accepting her answer.
"Why didn't you wake us up and tell us?" Stefan would not be budged.
Gwen sighed and got out three bowls, put a mix of fruit in all of them then added plain yogurt to Stefan's, berry to Damon's and feijoa to hers. "Stefan, she looked to be in honourable, safe company, if not I would have woken you and honestly sleep seemed more important at the time." She said giving the boys their bowls with a spoon each, by habit they started eating.
"How do you know Elijah is safe for her?" Damon asked after a mouthful, 'hmm fruit and berry yogurt, the best' he thought.
"He had something of a kiwi about him, think it's the accent." She said. At this she took her bowl of fruit and cuppa tea out the door to enjoy the limited sunshine of the morning. The boys ate their breakfasts, contemplating her usually trustworthy instincts.
She joined the brothers in the library after a shower and she was dressed, in capris and a purple and blue flowy shirt and cropped jean jacket, her favourite wedges on her feet, making her not so short.
"Did she just hang up on you" Damon asked Stefan.
Gwen raised her eyebrows at this sitting down by Damon. "She did" Stefan replied. Gwen stayed quiet but her facials spoke for her.
"She's lost it" Damon decided, Gwen giggled.
"If anyone can convince him to kill Klaus, it's her" Stefan was adamant.
"Bonnie's the way to kill Klaus, Stefan. He thinks she's dead, we have a chance with her." Damon corrected.
"She'll kill herself in the process, Elena's looking for another way" Stefan rebutted, Gwen was stunned 'That's new' she thought.
"Her way will get her killed. So we need to find her and stop her." Damon said standing up, Stefan stood too but Gwen just took out the entire couch, 'this is entertaining' she thought.
"No you need to back off" Stefan said getting in his face.
"What?" Damon was stunned. Gwen suddenly had a craving for popcorn.
"Look I don't like this anymore than you do but we need to trust her, we just gotta let her do her thing" said Stefan diplomatically.
"That might be your plan, mine's better" said Damon then tried to walk off but Stefan stopped him. 'Yup' thought Gwen 'I really need some popcorn for this drama'.
"I said back off." Stefan said clearly with warning. Damon just looked at him, weighing his options.
From her spot Gwen giggled "Guys, you know all good relationships start with good communication right. You two need to work on yours."
They both groaned like they heard that a thousand times and simultaneously said "Shut up Gwen" to which she laughed picking up a book from the table. Shaking their heads the brothers split, Stefan into another room and Damon to the other couch.
An hour later Gwen was still on the couch and Damon was pouring himself a drink of bourbon when Stefan came in on the phone. They listened into the call with and when he said he'd go over and explain it seemed Damon couldn't help himself.
"Oh I'd love to give you a hand but you wouldn't want me to do anything stupid" he said smiling, eyes full of mischief.
Gwen narrowed her eyes in suspicion closing her book.
"Seriously going to be like this" Stefan chastised.
"You and your girlfriend are calling the shots; I'm just backing off Stefan." Damon teased and took a sip of bourbon. Stefan left shaking his head.
Gwen stood and joined Damon looking after Stefan asking, "Please tell me he's not like this because of a girl and can actually joke."
"Pretty much but he normally only jokes around certain people" Damon replied in all seriousness.
"So what we gonna do about AlariKlaus?" She asked.
"Oh that's a good one, AlariKlaus. Why didn't I think of that?" he said back as Andie joined them, "Hi".
"Hi" Andie replied. Gwen pretended to hurl.
"Once again not in front of me" Gwen complained.
"How old are you Gwen?" Andie asked, Gwen got where this was going.
"22 but no I refuse to grow up and you two deserve all the fake bile coming up my throat" Gwen glared.
"Ladies" Damon interrupted then said "let's go" quietly.
"Go where?" Andie asked. Gwen thought it was obvious so gave Andie a dull stare.
"Splitting from the team, going rouge" Damon challenged.
"Oooh" Andie hummed.
"I'm coming with" said Gwen, running to catch up.
"Why?" asked Andie.
"I'm bored, and have been reading too much" Gwen answered grabbing her handbag following to the door. She stood still for a moment to appreciate the car, "nice car, can I drive?"
"No, get in the back" Damon replied.
"But I'm a really good driver" She insisted.
"Get in or I leave you behind" he said with a snarky smile.
She glared and got in the back, "fine". Once in they left with Damon telling Andie the game plan.
Once at Alaric's building Gwen noticed how close to town it was, an easy walking distance. She followed Damon and his stupid girlfriend, who didn't even deserve a nickname, up to the apartment.
"I don't think this is a good idea" said Andie.
"You're an investigator journalist, we're investigating." Replied Damon like it explained everything and gave them an excuse. Gwen rolled her eyes.
Getting to the door, Andie knocked "Hey Alaric, you home? It's Andie Starr, Jenna's friend."
Gwen snorted, 'Yeah you're a star, in your head' she thought. Damon and Andie looked at each other and around while she leaned on a nearby wall, seeing no one Damon broke open the lock and Andie pushed the door open. There stood what looked like an Elena with better hair and clothing, 'this must be Katherine' Gwen thought.
"Thank god" Katherine said, hand on her hip.
"Wow, you were right she looks exactly like Elena" said Andie walking in.
"Yup" responded Damon, trying the entrance.
Rolling her eyes Gwen pushed past the two to stand by Katherine and looked at her for a few seconds then turned to Damon saying "told you straight hair doesn't go with that facial structure, but this, this is brilliant. Loose curls; nice choice, and stylish yet simple clothes; classic. Now I'm getting why we're supposedly best friends, btw's can I have your shoes?" Once that was said she started snooping, her day job.
"Thought you might be dead" Damon said, ignoring Gwen's pointed comments.
"Unfortunately not" Katherine replied then looked over to her best friend before she went back in time.
"God this is your best friend Damon? A haggard history teacher? Please tell me he has other redeeming qualities than his hair and taste for bourbon" interjected Gwen coming from the bedroom, hands on hips. Katherine laughed as that was what Klaus had liked about him too.
"You'll find out later once Klaus leaves his body Gwen" Damon replied, "There's more to him than that".
"What are you all doing here?" demanded Katherine.
"We are here to rescue you" Andie said, walking in. Gwen snorted and walked to Katherine's side.
"No sweetie. We're here to see if she deserves to be rescued" Damon smiled sweetly as Gwen fake up-chucked again. Which Damon and Andie ignored and Katherine smirked at.
"Right" answered Andie and turned around to snoop as well.
"I figured you still might be kicking. AlariKlaus was blending in way to easily, figured he had some coaching". Damon said this taking out a small bottle of liquid vervain, Gwen grinned at his use of her nickname.
"Is that?" asked Katherine.
"Vervain, your salvation" answered Damon. Bored Gwen turned away to the CD rack but still listening to the conversation.
"It's not going to undo anything" stated Katherine.
"There's always a loophole" said Damon lowering his hand. "Did he say to stay in this apartment till he said it was okay to leave?" Katherine tried to speak. "You can't say. Did he say to do absolutely everything he says until the end of time?"
"No" Katherine automatically said.
"There's your loophole, drink this and it'll prevent any further compulsion" he said holding the vervain up once more. Katherine came closer to get it from him but he pulled it away.
"Give it to me" Katherine demanded. Across the room Gwen chose a CD and put it in ready for play to be pushed, if Katherine and her were as close as they say she'd enjoy it. She then turned to watch the others.
"Answer one question first; you double-crossed us with Isabel, why?" Damon asked.
"I didn't think you could stand a chance against Klaus. I was looking out for myself" Katherine replied. Gwen could appreciate that, it seemed the phrase 'survival of the fittest' summed up Katherine's whole life.
"And where'd that get ya?" Damon snarked, Gwen and Katherine rolled their eyes at his reply. "Here" he tossed her the bottle as Andie joined him, "be careful with that, if he finds out you have that you're never getting out of here."
Katherine opened the bottle and drank a sip, consequently hacking as it burnt her throat.
"You owe me" finalised Damon and headed away from the door saying "I will collect" with a smile. He turned to Andie saying "come on" and walked away.
She followed but paused by Katherine "nice to meet you" then exited.
Gwen shook her head and joined Katherine glaring at the door, "I don't like her either".
Katherine laughed, "Given her a nickname yet?"
"No, but I'm contemplating Twiggy" she smirked.
"Why?" Katherine asked in amusement, Gwen gave the best nicknames.
"Cause I want to snap her like a twig" Gwen replied completely serious.
Katherine laughed and gave her a hug, "So how are you dealing with all this?"
"You know you're the first person to ask that" Gwen chuckled and shook her head, "I'm good but some of it is really overwhelming."
Katherine gave her a reassuring smile and said, "Well at least you have others with you that can help you. And trust me when I say you're going to have the time of your life travelling. One extremely long party".
"You're not what little Miss Princess Bore describes you as and for that I'm happy but hey not surprising seeing it's her" Gwen said then stepped to the door "seeing you round bestie" then she left closing the door after her. Going down the steps she met the others at the car.
"Come on Gwen, let's go home" said Damon.
"You know what I'm gonna walk around town, haven't seen much of it and I don't want to spend all my time at the house. I'll ring to get picked up" Gwen said and walked off in the direction of the town centre.
Ten minutes later Gwen was window shopping, seeing many things she liked but had no money to buy. She saw the café she stopped at the day before not far from where she was. Smiling she decided to have lunch there today. She walked over and entered looking at her options. The door opened and closed behind her and she felt a presence behind her, she turned and raised her eyebrows at the person behind her.
"Hello AlariKlaus" she said.
He smiled, "Your nicknames have always amused me, Gwen Masters" tilting his head. She giggled.
"Glad my nicknames amused someone" she replied and turned back to decide on her lunch, "I'm quite proud of that one".
"You should be it's quite inventive, though others are very good as well" he said still smiling.
"Thank you, so why are you here? Let me guess, your one of the essential people I have to meet before I go back in time" she said jokingly.
"I'm guessing you still don't fully believe the Salvatore's then" he enquired as they got closer to the counter to order.
"No but meeting Katherine convinced me a bit more" she said this and finally decided walked to the counter only for him to beat her.
"One lime milkshake and one ham, cheese and tomato croissant toasted for her and one black coffee for me please" he ordered and then paid.
"How?" she asked, staring at him.
"I know you" he shrugged like it explained everything which it kinda did. Collecting her drink and croissant she walked off with him following.
"You had better have used your own money AlariKlaus" she said sitting down, her bag beside her. He sat down opposite. They watched each other as she had her first bite.
"So why go see Katherine? You aren't besties yet" he asked seeing no reason for her to go to Alaric's apartment.
"Boredom, curiosity, the unstoppable need to snoop, take your pick?" she replied.
"Why curious? Of me, Alaric or Katerina?" he asked.
"Well you, not really. With all this curse stuff going on I figured a small girl from New Zealand who somehow goes back in time wasn't high on the to-do-list for the big bad this week. Alaric, sure, everyone thinks so highly of the guy, who isn't much other than bad clothes, great hair and bourbon, though his music taste isn't so bad that I can figure. And Katerina, I'm guessing that's her birth name, well the brothers say she's to-be my bestie and as the doppelganger of whiny Princess Bore, she had to be something else. Which is true, I can see myself spending a lot of time with her" she explained then drank some shake. They sat silently drinking and eating after her answer. AlariKlaus wore an amused and fond look as she ate, "So what about you, how did you spend your day?"
"Well do you want honesty or sugar coated?" he asked knowing the answer but had to ask.
She narrowed her eyes in suspicion saying "Be honest but not too many details please".
He leant forward on his elbows and said "I sent my witches to get my real body, frightened Katerina some for amusement and just before seeing you I scared Elena's guardian with the truth about vampires and fought with Stefan. I'm quite busy today" He waited for her answer.
She sat quietly, sipping her shake while processing through his morning. Placing the glass down she looked him in the eyes saying "I'm starting to think I'll never be bored here" this was said with a teasing smile which set them both off laughing. Once they calmed and had more of their drink and food Gwen continued "So do you really hate the 60's or was that a joke?"
He chuckled looking at his coffee for a moment then back at her, "No I did really dislike that decade, full of optimism, hopes and silly youthful dreams. Though the music wasn't too bad."
She shook her head smiling, "Thought so, that's what made me think something was up with Alaric. A 37 year old man wouldn't have known what the 60's was like to have that kind of opinion. He wasn't born yet."
"Okay sweetheart, you figured me out. But really after being alive for as long as I have the dreams of the 60's aren't that relatable" he responded turning his face away.
She ate last of her croissant as he looked out the nearby window, "Next question, what's up with this curse anyway? Why is it important to you and how does that Elijah guy fit into all of this?" she asked.
He turned back to her with a smirk, "If I'm going to explain that we'll need another drink"
She giggled again and held out her hand saying "Fine but you're paying, cop it up Big Bad". Bemused he gave her some money, she came back with drinks and two slices of cake, one red velvet and another orange cake.
Picking up his cake fork he proceeded to tell her everything she needed to know on him, Elijah and the curse over the next hour. After that they left the café walking around town talking on many things until she thought to go back to the house as he got a text from Maddox. They said goodbye and went separate ways.
Half an hour later and many missed turns, but with the help of modern technology and Google maps, she made her way back into the Boarding House. She came in as the brothers and Elena were in a standstill. She stood in the archway; arms crossed raising her eyebrows at Damon's saying "That's twice you've stood in my way. I wouldn't try a third."
"Testosterone central here, isn't it" Gwen said.
Damon turned at her voice, "Where the hell have you been? You said you'd call for a ride".
She just shrugged "Had a lot to think about so I walked".
Elena used this opportunity to leave. Gwen headed towards the living area saying "Google maps also helped".
"What did you do for the last god knows how long?" Damon demanded.
Gwen huffed as she dropped her bag on a seat by the fire "Just six hours and I window shopped, had a bite to eat and talked to a couple locals. Damon, I just lost track of time. Honestly"
"Next time call me" said Damon.
"Fine" She amended and headed to the kitchen. Looking through the cupboards she decided on instant noodles. She left the boys and Twiggy to it and made her dinner. Carrying in her food and a cup of tea she saw the boys in a moment of tense silence. She got situated as they started fighting, "Boys, that's antique so you're fixing it". She was ignored until Elena came in with Elijah.
"Stop!" Elena shouted, the boys let go and Gwen paused then loudly slurped her noodles earning looks from all. Elena rolled her eyes and continued inside the room.
Damon smirked at Gwen then turned to Elena, "Now you've invited him in?" he said like she was mental.
Elena responded with "Elijah and I have renewed the terms of our deal" like it explained everything. Gwen scoffed but kept eating.
"Really?" Damon asked a little bit snarky.
Elijah stepped forward saying, "The two of you will come to no harm by my hands", he came closer to the brothers in front of the fire, "I only ask for one thing in return".
Damon asked warily "What?" Gwen paused with her noodles.
"An apology" Elijah demanded.
Gwen snorted and mumbled "yeah, that'll happen" quietly, she had spent enough time with Damon to know the outcome of this. Elena walked up behind Elijah.
"A what?" Damon asked confused, the two brothers exchanged looks then Stefan walked forward towards Elijah, who was on a higher level to the others with Elena.
He said with a huff "I'm sorry for the part that I played in your death".
Gwen interrupted with "Plural Stefan, use proper English and correct facts" only to be ignored save an amused look from Damon.
"I was protecting Elena," Stefan continued looking at said girl then turned his eyes to Elijah "I will always protect Elena". There was a promise in his eyes when saying this.
"I understand" replied Elijah. Then everyone turned their eyes to Damon. Even Gwen who knew him for less than 48 hours knew it wasn't going to happen. Damon shook his head.
Elena sighed "Sacrifice is going to happen Damon. Bonnie will be able to kill Klaus without hurting herself and Elijah knows how to save my life. Told you I'd find another way and I did."
"Is that true?" Damon asked glaring at them.
"It is" stated Elijah.
"And you're trusting him?" Damon demanded still glaring.
"I am" said Elena confidently.
"You can all go to hell" said Damon and left the room. Gwen tilted her head, looked at the others, shrugged and went back to her noodles.
Stefan watched Damon leave, looked as Gwen slurped the last of her noodles then turned to Elijah saying "He's angry with me right now but he'll come around" trying to convince himself as well.
"Perhaps" replied Elijah, who still watched the door Damon left through.
Gwen put down her bowl and picked up her tea drinking it as Elena and Stefan planned with Elijah. Finishing it she picked up her bowl and headed to the kitchen. Placing them in the dishwater, she refilled the jug and turned it on to boil. She then went up to her room passing an upset Twiggy on the way. She decided to have a shower to calm from a busy day. From the Princess and the Suit-man to Katerina or Katherine, whichever it is, and then the time spent with AlariKlaus. The Big Bad wasn't that bad really; she enjoyed her time with him. He was honest about the curse and its truth, she didn't quite understand why he'd tell her but maybe she will someday. She got out and dried herself and her hair wondering what he really looked like, maybe he had dimples.
She put on her pj's and dressing gown then headed down to the kitchen with her mother's tea in hand. From what she could tell it was only her downstairs, she reboiled the jug as she got out a cup, saucer and small teapot. She put the tea in the strainer part of the pot and added water. She placed it all on a tray with sugar and an apple. She carried it through to the library and took over a seat by the fire. She found her book from that morning and immersed herself as her tea stewed.
A chapter later she poured her tea and as she sat back with her cup she smelled the fragrance coming with the steam only to be interrupted mid-exhale.
"Night-cap?" Elijah asked as he took the seat opposite her silently.
"Yup, my mother's recipe. It's calming and nice to have before sleeping" she told him and took a sip.
"Smells quite fragrant, what's in the mix your mother made?" asked Elijah fondly.
"She taught me it before I left New Zealand. It has a mix including lavender, camomile, vervain, rose hubs and cinnamon. My mum liked to call it restful" she told him smiling at the memories of her mum as a child before the nagging started.
"Nice mix to calm and protect yourself with in this town. How long have you drank it?" he asked.
"Every few days since I was a child really. My mum had me have it to calm me enough to sleep or I'd stay up all night" she laughed out.
"I didn't know vervain grew in New Zealand" he stated curiously.
"Well if not my mum proved them wrong as she has half a greenhouse as a garden for her tea making. She makes them herself, dries the fruit, mixing and tasting. Then she taught me how to do it. It's a handy skill to have really. This mix always reminds me of home" she answered him smelling the tea again.
"You never told me where in New Zealand you come from, just the country and some surrounding details" he asked subtly.
She smiled knowingly "You never investigated me? How come I can guess that's not true? You went to Kiwi-a-go-go-land, didn't you Elijah."
He smiled widely and chuckled "Yes, I did many years ago when I guessed you'd be alive but there wasn't a Gwen Masters, except for an elderly woman that wasn't you".
She sat up and placed her cup on the tray, starred at Elijah then said "You met Grandma; she died not long after I turned 6. I never got to know her well except that she made incredible rhubarb tarts".
Elijah frowned in thought at this information while thinking of her tart obsession, "So you're from the Wairarapa region. I was there two years before her death if my knowledge is correct. That would make you around four at the time but I cannot recall a child named Gwen."
She wrinkled her nose at that, "As a child and up until I left home I was called by my first name, which will not ever be spoken" she ended this pointing at him sternly.
This all made sense to Elijah now but decided to change the subject as he picked up that she did not wish to talk more of the topic of her name, "I saw a lot of your favourite places you told me about. I quite enjoyed the picnic area in your home region with the stony river and vineyards nearby".
She instantly brightened up "The Cliffs?"
"Yes, quite peaceful" he smiled as she drank some more tea and started her apple "Reminded me of my birthplace".
She giggled "New Zealand does that, even in the cities. Though I've enjoyed these cities in America there's just something about the one's back home that I just love, except for Auckland." They laughed at that, "Jaffa's" she laughed out.
He shook his head at her "I always found it amusing how different parts of a country cannot like other parts of the same country just because of the town, even if the town itself is quite pleasant".
She chuckled at this "Are you talking of Auckland, Hamilton or Invercargill?" Her country always teased these towns and cities.
"Any country, Gwendoline" He chuckled at her facials to the use of her full name.
"Use my full name again and I will give you a worse nickname than Bore's" She said giving him her warning glare and finger pointed at him.
He tried to keep his face straight "Duly noted. I'll endeavour not to do so" he said, even though both of them knew he'd use it again.
She laughed quietly and shook her head, finished her tea and apple. "Well that's me done here, have a good night's sleep Elli" She grinned and teased picking up her tray, taking it through to the kitchen, his laughter following her. She just grinned putting the dishes in the washer and core in the bin, then headed up for a sleep in the best bed ever.