Note: I do not own TVD or any characters associated with it. This is just a fanfic/songfic I felt compelled to do after watching 3x22.

Italic AND bold text is the song lyrics. Just italic text within the story are thoughts.

Damon lay in a sprawl at his desk, a glass of bourbon in hand as his gaze is captivated by the mesmerising waves of the lit fireplace, the flames dancing in mirth as if they knew something he didn't. His focus lay elsewhere, caught up in thoughts of the last few days he ends up draining his glass quite quickly before pouring himself another, all the while contemplating the events of the day. Alaric dying. A frown crosses his features, after what Jeremy said about his spirit visiting for farewells he couldn't shake off the last few moments of Alaric's life.

Yes, he tried to kill me.. Damon mused but in his final moments, the shock that flitted into Alaric's eyes as he slowly felt his life seep away from his form. Damon suppressed a motion of disgust at the notion that he cradled Alaric whilst he was dying, all the more knowing that Elena was dead too. That his cries in vain were maybe more for her than for the dying man in his arms. The pure fear that rattled his body, which halted his thoughts and made him feel primitive in his urges and desires. At the time it was too much but even so, in the end Elena chose Stefan.

Merely the sound of your voice

Made me believe that

that you were her

Just like the river disturbs

…my inner peace

The sudden melody fills the air and peaks, a sweet sound emitting waves of soothing pleasure yet also hinting at darker things and darker places. Damon shakes his head, yet again wishing that the effects of alcohol were more potent, he felt that after a day like today- he needed to be drunk.

Elena still died. The thought kept ripping through his consciousness like wildfire and for a brief moment it felt like his body was paralysed. Elena is in transition, she's becoming a vampire. His lips curled up in a grimace as he thought back to Katherine and how similar things had played out once again. The vampire who he fell in love with. The curse of the doppelganger. The tragedy of falling in love with the girl- over and over again that will never choose him. He suppresses the urge to shout, to lash out, to exhibit anger as sorrow seeps into his heart once again. Why does this keep happening to me? He soon resorts to drinking from his bottle of bourbon residing on the table as he raises from his plush chair, adjacent to the fireplace.

He finds comfort in another part of the house, he lay with one hand clutching the bottle and the other behind his head whilst his thoughts drift and eventually the alcohol fuzzes his mind into an empty bliss.

Once I believed I could find

Just a trace of her beloved soul

Once I believed she was all

Then she smothered my beliefs

I'll always choose Stefan. A sharp outburst "Fuck!" and a groan as Damon rises from the sofa, bottle still in hand and mind still whirling as the thought nagged at him. She was like a light in his mind, that constantly flickered and reminded him that she was around, she was still here and that she cared for him. It eased the ache in his heart, but a lump soon formed in his throat as he realised that, she was true, she would never choose him. He was impulsive and dangerous and as much as he thrilled her and tested her limits- he scared her too, and in the end she wanted someone she could depend on, that would comfort her and not ask questions, that would not challenge her at every turn and breathe life into her own.. She wanted comfort, reassurance, normality.

Bitterly, Damon smirked- her humanity she been stripped away from her by dear old Dr. Fell, and in her hazes and during the transition maybe Elena was unaware. Unable to figure out what was happening as her mind is caught up in feral needs, as the blood injected into her veins changes and manipulates her body as well as her mind into one of a new nature. How much will this affect her personality, Damon wonders. Sometimes the transition is not kind, and maybe Elena was ready to die.

Inadvertently, Damon's fangs appear at the thought of Elena in a permanent, still death. The anguish was raw and it sobered what traces of alcohol had affected him previously.

One cold winter's night

I may follow her voice to the river

Leave me for now and forever

Leave while you can

Somewhere in time I will find you and haunt you again

Like the wind sweeps the earth

Somewhere in time when no virtues are left to defend

You fall in deep

She was changing and he didn't want to see her. He didn't want to believe the fact that Elena would be caught in eternal damnation like the rest of them, and that many of the things that Elena desired she would now, never have. It was either a pure, complete death that she faced if she denied the transition or an eternal life where she could never be a mother and one where she would become a watcher of the times, where all the humans around her would die while she wouldn't even age. Even she would eventually lose her brother, Jeremy.

I was a liar in every debate

I rule the forces that fueled your hate

When the cold in my heart leaves, it comes to an end

And quietly I'll go to sleep

The door behind him creaks open as a presence enters the room. "Elena wanted to see you," a familiar voice circled the air. Damon fought the need to retort bitterly and simply said. "You know I can't go… Brother". Stefan's form stepped calmly into the room, finally as he realised that Damon was not angry with him, just sad.

"Well done little brother, yet again you get the girl" Damon mocks, unable to suppress it anymore as he toasts Stefan with bottle in hand and as he raises from his seat, a sway in his step. "I mean, its always you, isn't it? What do you have that I don't? Minus a, hmm, ripper-streak and all" he continues, sorrow laced in his voice as he edges closer to the door, unable to be around his brother any longer.

"She loved you, you know.." Stefan's voice fills the air suddenly, as if trying to ease the tension between the two brothers, as well as calmly stating the promise that whoever she chooses- the other one would leave. "..but not enough" Damon replies, saluting Stefan once again before retiring to his bedroom.

How could that first time recur

When memories linger on and on

What made me think you were her

Helena is dead to all

dead to all

Memories flash in front of his eyes as he lay undisturbed on the bed. Part of him wonders whether she will ever know what he gave up to make sure she stayed happy, and another part of him jibes at the fact that compulsion wears off upon a vampires memories and that yes, she will finally know- that he met her first. The spark of hope that this flares in Damon's heart is almost unbearable, she's already chose, she's made her choice. There is no going back now, he reassures himself.

Katherine never loved me either. He ponders, deliberately trying to force himself to no longer care for the dark-haired girl whose eyes bewitched him and whose humanity intrigued him.

Nothing can bring her to life

Don't pretend that I'll be loving you

Once I believed she was gone

I corrupted from within

He sighs, unable to continue this eternal battle with his brother over the girl that doesn't know what she wants.

Leave me for now and forever

Leave while you can

Unable to sleep, Damon raises from his bed and shrugs on his jacket. As if on autopilot he swiftly makes his way out of his house and into the night.

Follow me into the light

Like ice on a lake of tears

I'll take you through

If only she chose him.

Or leave me tonight

I've gone too far to begin all anew

Although, finally- her choice has been made. No more fights and no more battles about the girl that would never choose him. It was finally time for him to go. To stake out bars in random places, hook up with girls whose names he didn't care for- all to erase the burning almond eyes in his mind and the sorrow in her voice as she said ''I care about you Damon, which is why I have to let you go'.

Life fades in anew

With someone like you

At least she would be happy now, minus the whole- eternal damnation thing.

He just wished he could be happy too.

R&R if you'd like to~ The song is The Haunting by Kamelot.