Getting this out of the way now: I'm not abandoning my fics but the past year has really hit hard and has left me not only physically but mentally exhausted. This is my first time touching any story for almost eight months and a majority of this has been written for far longer. I hope I can find the desire but this is really the last thing on my mind and forcing myself isn't why I write and I hate that this chapter somewhat reflects that

They stopped at the nearest café, Rebekah anticipating the hunger that was sure to follow the large use of magic and just the fact that it was almost lunch. They're seated in a booth in the corner of the café, the perfect vantage to observe the patrons and those passing on the sidewalk outside.

They were waiting on their order, Rebekah sipping on something that was definitely not water.

There was a calm around the table though, a comfortable atmosphere where Harry found himself relaxing more and more in his aunt's presence. It was strange and a totally different experience from the time he had spent with Nik. He almost feels bad for thinking so but Rebekah just had a way of calming his nerves and allowing him to relax. Thinking back on her words from earlier in the day – biting his bottom lip in thought – maybe he and his father were too similar for him to instinctually feel comfortable around. They were brash and stubborn, quick to action. Those weren't great qualities to bond over.

Rebekah studied Harry over the top of her glass of alcohol, noting he must be deep in thought as he hadn't touched his soda since the waitress had dropped it off nor had he noticed the girl try and fail to flirt with him.

Interesting. May as well jump right to the point.

"I'm curious what drove my nephew across the ocean, with a baby no less. Why aren't you in school?"


She could only roll her eyes, remembering all the times her brother had gotten lost in his own little world as well.

"What happened to your schooling? And how did you meet this Hermione girl?"

The waitress from before came with their food, Harry moving absently to make room for the plates. She tried once again to give him a flirtatious smile but Harry only politely thanked her. Rebekah didn't even try to hide her smirk, shooing her away with her hand while raising her eyebrows at her mockingly.

The waitress pouted but quietly retreated, knowing a lost cause when she saw one.

"Me and Hermione have known each other since we started school. We went to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. We've been friends since we were 11. She was also the first person to figure out I was a werewolf when we were 16." It was all said very clinical, almost detached.

"You two sounded close…why isn't she here with you?"

He knew that question would arise at some point, "Our lives diverged on two different paths a few months ago." It was actually a lot longer than a few months ago. He had known since he turned that they would all go different ways…one way or another.

Rebekah took another sip of her drink, waiting for him to continue. He should've known that wouldn't be enough to satisfy her.

"We used to be a trio before I had a falling out with our other friend. She's in love with him and I couldn't make her choose between us so," he shrugged, trying not to show how much this decision had affected him, "I made the choice for her."

She clicked her tongue. That was very noble of him, something she could see their noble brother, Elijah, doing.

"She doesn't sound like a very good friend if she's in love with someone who hates her best friend."

Harry moved to her defence because Hermione had been by his side when he needed her the most, "She's the smartest and loyalist person I know but she and Ron have been through a lot together. Sometimes," his voice softened, "that creates something between two people."

His expression had changed for that split second, telling Rebekah the wound wasn't as closed as Harry was trying to make himself believe.

"She's helped me with Teddy as much as she could though. I wouldn't have made it two days without her!" he passionately declared. They had shared history and while he didn't agree with recent decisions, he still loved and cared about her. He really believed that without Hermione, he wouldn't have gotten far on his own.

He looked Rebekah in the eye, trying to convey his feelings. Blue conceded to green and began stabbing at her plate of food. Harry busied himself in his own plate, stomach growling at the lack of nourishment.

The table fell to silence as the duo busied themselves with their food, watching as the patrons went about their own lunches. It was somewhat relaxing to watch normal people go about their lives. The elderly couple in the corner holding hands under the table, the teenagers arguing over a phone screen, the woman nursing a coffee still in scrubs, the man reading the newspaper…none of these people knew or cared that there was a vampire and werewolf next to them. They all had their own problems and lives and they continued to go about them day after day. At one point in his life, Harry had wanted that normality, the mundane, but after seven years…well, you could take the wizard out of the magical world but you can't take the magic out of the wizard.

Rebekah focused on the couple with three children, breaking the silence.

"I travelled with my brothers on and off over the last nine centuries. Nik and I were always finding trouble so Elijah had to be the voice of reason. He tried his best but it was almost impossible when Kol decided to join in."

Harry looked up sharply at the names.

"Elijah is our oldest brother. In many ways, he was our father and best friend. He's constantly trying to protect us all." A smile lit up her face as she thought of her oldest brother, her adoration for him clear. Her look shifted to something more exasperation at her next topic, "Kol on the other hand, did nothing but cause trouble since he was old enough to walk. He's the youngest of my brothers. If there was mayhem, Kol was more than likely the cause." Her face took a more melancholy look towards the end, "But we've been incapacitated the last few decades. Nik only just found me but our siblings are still lost under a powerful cloaking spell after an unfortunate run-in with a pissed off witch a century ago."

Gods, she hated perpetuating this lie when her siblings were within reach but this was the only way to protect the budding relationship between father and son.

"One day, I hope for you to meet the rest of our family," she let out a long sigh, "Until then, you're stuck with your Auntie Bex."

Harry hides his smile by stuffing his face, cheeks burning at the sheer love Rebekah was directing his way.

How could she care for him so much after knowing him for a day? It didn't make sense. They didn't know how much of a bother he was. They didn't know the people who cared about him had a tendency of dying. And now, to learn that the rest of his family was stolen away, hidden away for decades…

He chewed at his bottom lip when he swallowed his food. He hadn't planned on being pulled into another supernatural battle. All he had wanted was to find his father. But he'd be lying if he said his blood wasn't pumping at the thought of this new path.

"I may not be that powerful but I can use this spell to try and find them," he fingered the spell he had copied earlier, the one they had used to find the necklace. "We can save them…you can be happy."

Rebekah let out a choked off laugh at the sincerity of her dear nephew, brilliant teeth on display as she tried to wrap her head around how such an altruistic and humble kid could've come from their family.

They would ruin him like they had every good thing that had happened to them. They would never learn from their mistakes because against all odds, Rebekah truly believed that her brother could change. But if their siblings were awakened, Nik would revert to his overly paranoid self and drive Harry away from them. He would see a threat in Elijah as a parental figure, a threat in Kol to Harry's wellbeing, would she too eventually become a threat in Nik's eyes?

No, for the sake of her family, her brother's redemption, she had to do this, no matter how it broke her heart.

"I'm afraid it's not that easy, love. Tracking people is difficult but the cloaking spell that was cast on myself and my siblings channels our strength. You're more powerful than you know but even your power is not enough to find them. We'll find another powerful witch to help you with the spell."

She cursed her brother for making her play into his lie. The second she believed he was putting Harry or Teddy in danger, she was waking their siblings, consequences be damned.

Harry studied her, instinct telling him she was hiding something from him. Maybe she just didn't trust him which was reasonable as they had only known each other for a day. It was just…his family was more than they appeared. There was bound to be centuries old – yeah, he was still getting used to that! – secrets tied between them. He didn't think he was in danger, something he had a sixth sense for at this point. He'd let it go for now. For all he knew, Rebekah was just upset about being separated from her siblings.

"Enough of this depressing talk! I want to hear about this Hogwarts. A school of magic sounds adventurous!"

Harry let a forlorn smile cross his face as he reminisced about his school days. He'd had some of the best days of his life there before everything went to shit.

He was feeling melancholy, enough to briefly reminisce about the good times.

He waved away the waitress when she came to check on them.

"I was 11 when I found out I had magic and it was like everything made sense, you know? Like there was finally somewhere I truly belonged."

How delusional he had been. He didn't belong anywhere anymore.

"Hogwarts is a thousand-year-old castle in Scotland. It became my home. The staircases moved, the portraits talked, there's a magical forest on the grounds! I learned potions, charms, how to fly! I made my first friend there. I never wanted to leave," he whispered towards the end, the excitement of remembering his first steps into the magical world dampened with the knowledge of recent events.

Rebekah, sensing something more, looked to divert to happier memories.

"What was your favourite subject? How did the staircases move?"

Harry took the subject and ran with it, "I don't actually know. The castle is so full of magic, it feels like it has a mind of its own sometimes. My favourite subject had to be Defense Against the Dark Arts. I've always been better at practical magic than theory. My un-cle," he stuttered before catching himself, "He taught us in my Third Year."

Thinking back, that was probably the last year he enjoyed. Every year after involved fighting for his life.

"So you like a good fight, you'll fit right in." Rebekah didn't push on his slip, which he was thankful for.

Harry pulled out the napkins from the holder, looking around to make sure no one was paying attention before whispering a quiet spell to animate the thin pieces of paper.

Rebekah watched with rampant attention.

When he was done, Harry waved his hand to put his pieces in motion before explaining.

"By far, the best thing at Hogwarts was Quidditch. I made the team my First Year. It's played on brooms in the air," he pointed to the broom shaped napkins zooming around the table. "There're goals on either end of the pitch," again, he motioned to the hoops floating about 20 centimetres above the table. "There are three different balls in the game, each with their own purpose. I was the Seeker in charge of the Snitch, a small golden ball with wings."

Harry looked to make sure Rebekah was following along and saw her staring at his mini Quidditch pitch intently, eyes travelling to him for more information.

"It's a similar concept to football in that the Quaffle is passed around by the Chasers to score. The difference is the Bludgers are spelled to attack players. That's where the Beaters come in. They direct the Bludgers to the opposing team."

"What's so special about the Snitch?"

"It can win the game. It's wicked fast and almost uncatchable which is why it's worth 150 points. I only ever lost one game," Harry stated proudly. If there was one thing Harry knew was his accomplishment and his alone, it was his skill in Quidditch. It was just unfortunate that the last years of his schooling had made the game distant and unenjoyable by him.

It was absolutely fascinating, to hear about this whole culture that seemed to be hidden away. He lit up talking about this Quidditch which was why she gave him her full attention. She wanted to know what made him happy, what his hobbies were, she wanted to know everything about her nephew.

"I'd love to see you play one day."

The longing to be in the sky once again returned; the freedom in the air was equivalent to running wild as the wolf except he had more control. He was free up there and that was something he craved: to be free. He didn't want to be under anyone's control or expectation. He didn't want to keep hiding and running.

Rebekah could tell there was more, there was always more. The subtle shift in his body language, his avoidance of anything personal, his flighty response. Add that to the nightmares and the running…something was wrong, very wrong. Thinking back on the day so far, Harry had learned more about her than she had him and what he had given up wasn't technically about him but the stuff that had happened around him. It was a very skillfully done avoidance tactic, one he had no doubt used before.

As they finished up their meal, Rebekah didn't want to return to her brother just yet. Call her selfish but she wanted to monopolize Harry's time. And if the state of Harry's wardrobe was anything to go by, she had her next stop planned out already. It also gave her more time to probe the kid for answers. She couldn't protect him if she didn't know what to protect him from.

She placed Nik's credit card on the table, motioning for the girl to collect the check, and if she happened to get a sizeable tip, Rebekah would blame it on sentimentality and solidarity.

Properly fed, Rebekah steered Harry to the shopping district, intent on spending the rest of the day with him. She didn't want to give him up just yet. Never had she fallen so in love, so fast. She adored this boy more than she had loved any of her dalliances. She would burn the world to ensure Harry was safe. She would do whatever, whenever, just to see those dimples lift on his soft cheeks.

She gave him a blinding smile when he turned confused eyes to her after she hooked her arm into his, leading him onwards.

Stefan's sneaking around brought back just why he had the vampire accompanying him this summer: his hybrids. He couldn't make hybrids.

His son had been an unexpected distraction but now he could focus on his hybrids and why he couldn't make any.

Stefan's actions, while not suspicious nor unexpected, brought forth an intriguing dilemma. There was no question that his old friend hated him but he should abhor him for killing the girl he loved, for endangering his brother. Yet, this was the first time all summer he had made any move against him. Why?

The Stefan he knew wouldn't have gotten caught so easily. This Stefan was weak and sentimental. Maybe he was still clinging on to the life he had built in Mystic Falls?

All these thoughts ran through his head as he stared down at the little bugger he was responsible for until Harry returned. After the initial rough start, the two had come to an understanding of sorts.

Teddy was a curious child with little freedom due to being so young. The little monster loved being held, something Klaus had observed in their short time together. They had a compromise where Teddy behaved so long as Klaus held him. It wasn't too difficult a task as he only needed one hand available to make phone calls…it's not like Teddy could understand what he was saying if he so happened to threaten murder as an encouragement to get the job done.

It worked as within the hour he was finally getting somewhere.

He continued to replay that night in his head, hoping to find something he missed. He had killed the doppelganger, killed the last of the Petrova line for the second time. There was no third chance.

Why didn't the curse fully break? Had his mother lied to him? Could he even create hybrids?

He knew it was possible, his son living proof but he was a different type of hybrid. What Klaus needed was a little bit of wolf and vampire mixed, something like him. And he needed it now!

He cursed at the situation, itching to kill something but having to restrain himself to feed the little monster who was screaming his demands to be fed faster…

Shopping was dreadful, his feet ached, his shoulders hurt, and he just wanted to sit down and never try on another piece of clothing again!

They had been shopping for over three hours before Rebekah took pity on Harry and called it a day. She may have gotten carried away with the shopping but women's style had changed much over the last century.

The trip, while not enough to distract her from the betrayal of her ex-lover, was enough to put her in a joyful mood. The more time she spent with her little nephew, the more she grew to love him. He was everything she had imaged a child of theirs to be and so much more. All the little things in his personality she could identify as a Mikaelson trait – no one could ever claim Harry was not one of them. He was everything good they had once been. Tragedy also seemed to follow in his wake. She had followed his avoidance of anything truly personal, the quick change of subjects, the twitchy behaviour like he thought he was being watched. He was anxious and scared to show it…to show any signs of weakness. Today painted a fuller and clearer picture of what she was dealing with.

Harry opened the door to their room and from behind him, she could see how tense he was and knew they still had an uphill climb with him. He didn't trust them – he liked them and enjoyed the idea of family – which was a smart survival move on his part.

Klaus heard them approaching, appearing with Teddy who had a bib on and looked content.

Rebekah raised her eyebrow at the smug smirk her brother sent her way and rolled her eyes before closing the door.

So he survived babysitting for six hours…it was only going to get harder.

Teddy immediately grabbed for Harry when he saw the teenager, causing a deep frown to etch across Klaus' face that only Rebekah noticed.

Harry obliged, his face lighting up as he took Teddy into his arms and rubbed noses, eliciting a bubbling giggle from the little one.

Was Nik jealous? She could see the tick in his jaw as he not quite stomped to the bar and poured himself a glass, immediately tipping it back.

"Harry and I had a marvellous day! We collected what information we could from the bar and afterwards, I decided we needed to spend quality family time together…I know you wouldn't mind that we used your card," Rebekah grinned, the whites of her teeth blinding as she once again got him, credit card between her fingers. Money was inconsequential, he had no need for it, not with how much their fortune had grown over the centuries.

Klaus tilted his head, remembering the sag in Harry's shoulders when he had first walked in and the many bags that had dropped to the floor when he had taken Teddy. Rebekah's arms were full of even more bags. "After such a stressful day with my sister, why don't we sit and relax," he offered with a sweep of his arm to the chaise and sofa.

Harry nodded, heading to the sofa but using it as a backrest as he put the baby on the floor and pulled a few toys over for his entertainment.

Rebekah lounged behind her nephew, a glass of wine in hand as Klaus took the chair across from them.

"My nephew is quite popular with the ladies, I had to bat our little waitress away multiple times."

Rebekah teasing did its trick as the backs of Harry's ears turned beat red. He had noticed the waitress's attention but felt uncomfortable doing anything about it. Rebekah had taken care of it so he felt no need to address it…clearly she didn't think so.

Klaus couldn't keep the large smile that spread across his face at that, "Well, he is my son." Oh, how he missed Rebekah's smart tongue. He should've undaggered her ages ago. "You must've had quite an eventful day, tell me more."

Harry waited for Rebekah to regale the day but the longer the silence stretched on, the sooner he realized he was expected to talk.

Without looking up from Teddy, he shrugged his shoulders, "Not much happened after we left the bar. I tried a few spells that failed, we went out to eat, and then shopped. Nothing too exciting." He paused and looked up for a brief second, "How was your day?"

Teddy was fine, better than he had ever expected when he walked out the door this morning. He was fed, changed, and just overall happy. He was ashamed to admit he was expecting to come back to a screaming Teddy. He was curious how Nik had done it.

"It was a bit strenuous but me and the cub came to an understanding." Klaus raised an eyebrow at Teddy who smiled and gurgled as if to confirm his statement.

"That's a relief…I know he can be a handful sometimes. I think he misses his mum and dad." Harry smiled sadly at Teddy as he let the boy grab at his finger curiously. "And all my travelling probably isn't helping him settle into a routine."

He thought of all the books and articles he had read that stressed setting a routine early in the baby's life for both the child and the parent.

"Once we get our answers, we can find a place to settle down for the both of you," Rebekah said softly, remembering what she had learned of Harry's past today.

He shrugged, he hated thinking about the future too much because he wasn't sure how long he would have Teddy before Andromeda healed, or maybe he would screw up with Teddy somehow and someone else would have to raise him…

Klaus stored away Harry's reaction for a later date. Right now was about him opening up to them.

"I've acquired many places over the centuries, I'm fairly certain any one of them will suit our needs." He leaned forward so his elbows rested on his knees, turning his attention to Teddy as Harry moved his hand around making his toys move.

The teen caught that again. Rebekah had said something similar earlier, how they had travelled through the centuries. It made him wonder, the adventurous part of him intrigued.

"What's it like…the world? I've never really been anywhere," he never thought he'd have the chance.

"It's immeasurable. Great cities and art and music, genuine beauty and life." He sees Harry's eyes light up in longing, like a bird that has been trapped its whole life. "I'll take you, anywhere you want. We can run under the night sky in the Outback, visit the Louve, eat through the markets of Shanghai."

Harry stopped breathing for a second, choking down a sob and averting his eyes, afraid to give away his turbulent emotions. Only one other person had so readily offered to take him away and he had lost him too soon.

He had to swallow hard. Nik wasn't Sirius and Voldemort was no longer around. "I think I'd like that once Andy – Teddy's grandmother – is well enough to take back custody." Or Teddy was old enough to attend Hogwarts. He wanted to believe that Andy would get better but she had suffered so much in a short amount of time. Her husband, daughter, son-in-law…everything she had loved had been taken from her. The Black Curse had finally taken its grip and there was no telling if she could be pulled from it.

Klaus took the opening Harry had unintentionally given him to segue into a topic he was most anxious about.

"How did Teddy come into your care?"

Rebekah shot him a look Harry couldn't see. She wanted answers just as bad but she knew he had to give them on his own time, let him trust them enough to talk about it freely. If Nik pushed too much, too soon, he might push them away.

The question threw him off with its bluntness but it wasn't unsurprising, it was pretty obvious that something happened to them.

"They were killed…a few weeks after he was born. It broke his grandmother, she'd only just buried her husband. It was dark times…I didn't want that to define him."

Klaus and Rebekah let Harry talk, wanting to know more and knowing if they stopped him he wouldn't be so quick to open up again.

"I was so scared when Remus told me I was the godfather…I mean, I wasn't exactly the poster child of authority and safety growing up. My life sucked and I didn't know the first thing about kids," he scoffed, stating the biggest understatement of the century.

He had been beyond livid when Remus told him he was Teddy's godfather. Demanding to know why they would do that when the probability of him surviving was so low.

It was deathly silent after his confession until Remus sunk to his knees, the life drained from him. Every wrinkle, every grey hair stood pronounced in his weariness but Harry refused to take it back. There may have been hope at the beginning of all this but the longer it dragged on, the smaller his chance of survival…and now that he was by himself…

A warm hand full of callouses and scars gently cupped his face, bringing his attention back to the man that had taken him in, the man he called family.

"You're going to survive and live a long and happy life, full of joy and laughter and love. I promise you this."

Harry shook himself out of that memory.

"I promised Andromeda that I would raise Teddy until she was healthy enough to take him back."

"That was very noble of you. He's in marvellous hands, sweetheart." Harry felt Rebekah move behind him and was thankful she didn't reach out for him. He wasn't comfortable with physical touch yet and Rebekah was slowly picking up on that.

Reminiscing brought up unwanted feelings, wounds that were still very much fresh. He hadn't talked about Remus in months, it was easier that way. Before, they had gotten each other through the loss of Sirius. Teddy was a good distraction. He didn't look too much like his parents yet and taking care of him was a full-time job that left him exhausted. Thinking about Remus, about their last real conversation…there had been a tiny part that believed the werewolf and had wanted to rage when he saw his body in the Great Hall. Wanted to curse and give up because what was the point in all of this if he was the only one to survive?

"I've gotta make a call, I hate to be a bother…" Harry moved to a standing position, stretching out his joints, popping them back into place.

Rebekah waved him away, already taking his place on the floor with Teddy.

Harry walked past Klaus, his smile coming out more like a grimace before hurrying to his room and locking the door. Taking a deep breath to centre himself, he had to prepare himself to call Hermione and subject himself to the undressing she was sure to give.

Harry exited his room a few hours later to see Klaus in the kitchen cooking dinner while Rebekah had Teddy in the crook of her arm, dummy secure in his mouth and eyes shut to the world.

He smiled at the scene before joining Klaus in the kitchen to offer his service, pulling a knife from one of the drawers, grabbing the washed veggies from the sink before getting to work on them. They worked in comfortable silence, the sound of chopping and sizzling filling the room.

"Rebekah told me about your father and what he did to you," Harry spoke softly as he paused in his cutting, almost hesitant to continue the conversation he had started. "I'm sorry you had to go through that. Family should love and care for one another. The fact that you're doing all this for me…it's more than I could ask or ever expected."

His conversation with Rebekah earlier today had sat in the back of his mind all day. It was something he couldn't pretend not to know about and he wanted this thing to work out.

"My siblings and I made an oath long ago, Always and Forever. As a Mikaelson, as my son, that includes you now."

Harry ducked his face to hide the way his cheeks brightened and the smile he couldn't keep from spreading across his face.

Klaus heard Harry's heart pick up, eyes moving across the room to his sister who rewarded him with an approving smile.

Hungry for answers and confident that Harry was beginning to open up to them after their chat earlier, Klaus probed deeper, seeing if he could get answers to his questions.

"Why were you searching for me? What must your guardians think of this little trip? When we first met, you said Lily Evans was your mum, what happened to her?" Klaus quietly demanded, touching on their new bond to provoke an answer. Was, as in past tense, as in dead. These questions plagued him the more he learned. Why did Harry remind him of himself? Why did he have these terrors he tried hiding?

Harry felt the bit that connected them respond to the demand but there wasn't much to it. He didn't mind answering the question, he wasn't hiding what happened to his parents, just avoiding it.

"They died when I was a baby. For sixteen years, I thought I knew who my father was and then I changed. All my life I've wanted to know my parents so when I realized that you might be out there, I wanted to find you."

Klaus clenched his jaw and turned his back to Harry. He wasn't expecting to hear Harry had been alone all his life, he had been expecting to hear that whoever his 'father' was had beaten him.

"How'd they die?" Was it an accident that took both parents away so young?

A shadow glossed over green eyes, "They were killed."

Glass shattering startled everyone at the revelation.

Harry stared at the broken glass on the floor and the blood dripping from Nik's hand.

For all his knowledge, Klaus truly knew nothing of his world. Just like he hadn't known his father was an Original Vampire, Klaus didn't know that he was Harry Potter, the Boy Who Lived. Something he wanted to keep his father in the dark about for as long as possible.

"Who raised you?"

"I was given to my aunt and her family," Harry shrugged but somehow it didn't sit well with the siblings. How abrupt and unfeeling it was, the silent demand to drop the subject.

Klaus didn't pursue, no matter how much he desired his answers. All this questioning gave him new mysteries. Where did this Remus person come in? Why were people being killed around his son? He stated that Teddy's parents had been killed as well, did that have anything to do with Harry's unspoken trauma? Did he need to kill a threat to his family?

He held his temper at the glare Rebekah sent his way. Right, he was trying to be the 'good' Klaus around Harry, gain his trust. He couldn't risk this relationship when Harry opening up. The answers will come in time, no matter how frustrated it made him right now.

"This world hasn't been kind to you and I fear it may only worsen because of my enemies but I swear, I will protect you."

"We," Rebekah spoke up for the first time, "We will protect you."

Why did his stomach flutter at that? He didn't need protection, he defeated the greatest Dark Lord, he survived a war by himself. So why did his mouth quiver and his eyes blur at such a ridiculous statement?

A pair of chocolate eyes studied the two people walking across the street intently, trying to figure out what she was missing.

This kid popped out of nowhere, situated himself in with the Originals, even had Klaus Mikaelson watching his son! Who was he?

She had been following them for a few days, conducting her own investigation once Stefan had gone missing. The idiot had probably gotten himself caught sneaking around, asking the wrong questions.

Gloria was dead, Stefan was missing, Klaus undaggered his sister and somehow this kid was connected to all of it.

Seeing her opportunity when Rebekah rushed into a nearby store, leaving the boy outside, Katherine crossed the street, head down and walking with a purpose, convincingly running straight into him.

"Oh my god! I am so sorry!" she blabbered, apologizing as the boy catches her before she could fall backwards. "I'm such a klutz!" Katherine laughed out with a forced fluster that she had perfected centuries ago.

"I'm in the middle of the pavement, I'm sorry," he gently apologized with a soft, if a bit awkward, smile.

Katherine feels her breath catch at the sight of his face, mind connecting all the dots she had missed.

Locking eyes, she pushed her compulsion forward, "Let me make it up to you. Come get a drink with me."

His face turned awkward as his eyes shifted to where Rebekah had disappeared, "I'm actually waiting for someone."

Not missing a beat, Katherine shouldered her purse with a blinding smile, "No worries! Sorry again!" He was cute but not her type. Once upon a time, she would've tried to seduce him to get information but not with what she had just discovered. It wasn't worth the risk especially if he couldn't be compelled!

Harry watched the woman strut away, disappearing into the crowd. There was something about her that had put him on edge.

Snapping fingers in his face brought him out of his thoughts, his aunt laughing at the dark blush of embarrassment that overtook his face. The couple drew bystander's attention, grumbling at the loud duo or smiling at the wholesomeness of the scene. With no concern to the scene she was no doubt causing, Rebekah moved to further embarrass her nephew, hands smoothing down his unruly hair in repeated motions to no avail.

Katherine hurried away, needing to put as much distance between herself and that family as possible! There was no way, no freaking way that was possible!

He looked just like Klaus, that smile and those dimples! The way his eyes scrunched up…she would recognize those features anywhere seeing she had spent the last few centuries running from them! His face was still young and soft, not yet a man, but there was no doubting the relation.

But how? How did he have a son and how did he resist her compulsion? There was no way the kid was just a distant relation, not with the strong resemblance, not with how close Rebekah was to him. None of the specifics mattered to her at the moment because, for the first time in centuries, Klaus Mikaelson had a clear weakness, one that was vulnerable which made the Hybrid himself vulnerable.

She unlocked her phone, selecting a name from her contacts she hadn't wanted to use for a few decades and waits for the ringing to stop.

"If it isn't the lying bitch."

"Believe me, you're the last person I want to be talking to right now, Damon." Katherine rolled her eyes at the bitterness of her former lover. Damon had been fun to play with once upon a time but he became boring once he became predictable. Regardless of their current relationship, if she wanted to make a move against this family, she needed him. He was always the suicidal and reckless one. The second she told him what she discovered, he would pull the kamikaze against the Mikaelson brat while she booked the next flight to Romania. "But you're going to want to hear this."

"I was truly hoping when we left that mildly annoying town, I could bring you around to the good old days, bring the fun Stefan back." Klaus narrowed his eyes at the groaning of the man in front of him. "Instead, I find you snooping around and becoming more of a nuance!"

Stefan could only groan as the vervain ropes continued to burn every inch of his body including his mouth. Klaus was in a particularly masochistic mood it seemed.

"You refuse to let go of your humanity, you refuse to drink human blood…you are hiding something! I feel I've been rather generous these last few months, giving you time to mourn that Petrova girl, I gave you the cure for your brother…yet you continue to defy me!"

He circled the suspended vampire, admiring his sister's handy work. It was a shame, truly. He had been so hoping Stefan would come around to his old ways willingly, be the fun ripper he admired.

As it was, Stefan was no longer his highest concern at the moment. His plans centred on Harry and getting answers.

"I am a patient man, my friend, so I'll let you think on your actions," Klaus placated the man with a soft tap to his cheek before turning to leave, the warehouse door sliding ominously behind him, plunging Stefan into total darkness yet again. The burning of the vervain almost as unbearable as the hunger ripping through him.

He would let Stefan hang for a few weeks before coming back to see if he was in a more talkative mood.