The first thing Elena Gilbert noticed upon leaving the boys bathroom were two forest green eyes staring down at her. Then she saw who they belonged to; the leather jacket guy. The one her and Bonnie had been spying on not five minutes ago. He was incredibly handsome up close, almost ethereally so, with defining features: a sharp jaw line and a straight nose. His lips were parted slightly in surprise, he had been about to say something.
Elena felt a steady blush crawl across her throat and cheeks and could only stare at this person standing in front of her.
'Uh, pardon me,' he spoke finally. His voice was just as mesmerizing as his looks and he seemed to have the ability to render anyone around him useless of coherent thoughts. His eyes darted from the door, back to Elena's face. 'Is this the men's room?'
'Yes,' Elena realized how stupid she looked and was trying so hard to articulate her words but there was something about the way he was looking at her that made it impossible to do so. This and the fact that she didn't exactly want to explain to him that she had just given her drug-abusing brother a serious talk. Talk about a conversation killer. 'Um..I was just- uh, I was... it's a long story.' She laughed nervously.
He returned her smile and started to move past her. Embarrassingly, she had also gone the same way. She grimaced apologetically and tried for the other way. He did this at the exact same time.
In the end, he stepped to the side to let her past, fighting back laughter.
'Thank you,' she rushed off, mortified.
* * * *
The next lesson passed by agonizingly slow. Elena wasn't paying any real attention to the teacher and only caught snippets of his dreary History explanation.
'...joined confederacy in 1861, it created a tremendous amount of tension...'
Elena's phone vibrated in her pockets. One look at the screen and her heart missed a beat. It was from Bonnie and read: HAWT-E STARING @ U. Of course she was talking about Stefan Salvatore, who was sat only a few seats away. Elena moved forward, letting her hair fall across her shoulder, a smile tugging at her lips. Despite everything, the attention was nice.
History was the only lesson that day that Elena shared with Stefan although she noticed she did have one or two other lessons with him. After school, Elena stopped by the cemetery, as she did every day and nestled against a large statue which was placed directly opposite her parents graves. Although she was grateful for the support from her friends, she valued and treasured the alone time she had as it was the only time that she could really be herself.
Dear Diary. I made it through the day. I must have said "I'm fine, thanks" at least thirty seven times. And I didn't mean it once. When someone asks, "how are you?" they really don't want an answer.
Elena stopped writing. A bird was perched on the headstone of her mother's grave. A crow with glossy black feathers and sparkling black eyes. It was staring at her, too.
'Okay, hi bird. That's not creepy or anything.'
The bird let out a screeching CAW, cocking its head towards her. Feeling a little unnerved, Elena stood up and waved her arms in the direction of the bird.
'Shoo!' The bird took off, screeching as it did so. 'Yeah. That's what I thought.' She nodded her head, a little triumphantly and turned round.
And found herself inches away from the crow.
Elena's scream caught in her throat. Keeping her eyes on the bird, she slowly reached for her bag. For some reason her heart was pounding and her instincts were screaming at her to run. For once she didn't question them. A fine mist had begun to gather, clinging close to the grass and stones and the whole place seemed to have taken on a disturbing atmosphere.
She suddenly felt as though she was being watched.
Get out of there, Elena.
She didn't know what she was running from, a bird or the mist? Or her own paranoid delusions? She stopped for a second, feeling a little silly and glanced back into the graveyard to see if she was just imagining things.
There was someone standing behind the headstone. A black shape. The outline of a person.
She didn't need any more incentive to run.
Her foot caught in a loose tree root and she tripped over. A shock of pain flashed through her leg, but she barely registered this. She stood up immediately, still looking back into the graveyard.
So she didn't see when she walked straight into Stefan Salvatore.