Bonnie took a step back and admired her handiwork. The formerly plain house was decorated from top to bottom in Halloween gear. Fake cobwebs along with fake spiders draped along the exteriors, while tombstones dotted the front yard, and for the final touch: pumpkins scattered all over the land.
Yeah she may have gone a bit overboard.
"It looks like Halloween exploded here." Liv remarked from Bonnie's side.
"It's festive!" Bonnie declared, "If you think this is bad, you should see what I have planned for Christmas."
"Remind me why we're doing this again?" The blonde rolled her eyes, "We're witches Bonnie, every day can be Halloween for us."
"You guys never decorated for the holidays?" Bonnie asked outraged.
"Yeah, but only for the big ones. Halloween was overlooked because it's always around the time that we have our autumn gathering."
"Well that sucks." Bonnie mused out loud.
"Speaking of events that suck," Liv rolled her eyes, "are you ready for your big magical debut tonight?"
"Ugh, please don't remind me." Bonnie groaned while cleaning up the rest of the unused decorations, "I really don't see what the big deal is, I mean, none of these people cared enough to reach out to me when I really needed help, but now they're lining up to meet me?" Bonnie shook her head, "They can miss me with that."
"There's free food and booze at least." Liv shrugged.
"Thank the goddess for simple things." Bonnie conceded, walking inside to put the box away. "I'll see you in a bit."
Bonnie parted ways with Liv and went to get ready, she was staying in a guest house at the Gemini compound for the time being. Normally this would be the part where she would meet up with Caroline and Elena and they would all get ready together. But with her friends solidly on the other side of the country, Bonnie was getting ready solo.
She had debated long and hard about what to wear tonight. Not only would it be her first official appearance as a Gemini adviser, but also her first official coven gathering of any kind. She'd sat in on meetings, but always made sure she was somewhere in the back. She was sure that her presence didn't go unnoticed, but aside from a few older members who wanted to talk about her grandmother, she was left mostly alone.
Tonight though, she would be representing the Bennett line, small as it was. The dress she'd finally decided on was reminiscent of one her mother had worn. She had seen pictures of Abby when she was younger and fell in love with the dress that she had worn during her debut. It was dark red with lots of gold accents. The bodice was a corset that hugged her frame, with a flowy skirt that had a slit up one side to make walking easier. The small amount of jewelry that she wore was gold to go along with the accents on her dress.
She was debating on whether or not to wear a ring when there was a knock at the door. "Come in."
"Wow." It was said in a hushed voice.
"It's not too much, is it?" Bonnie smoothed down her skirt, feeling nervous all of a sudden.
"You look amazing, Bon."
"You don't look so bad yourself." She took in Kai's all black attire, he wore the color very well. The only splash of color was his pocket square that matched the color of her dress.
"I just wanted to see if you were ready." He came to stand right beside her, offering his arm.
"Almost." She had pretty much made up her mind prior to Kai coming in, but seeing him there all dressed up cemented it in her mind. She took off the ring that she had been wearing since she came back and placed it into the jewelry box that she'd brought over from her grandmother's place.
She turned to accept Kai's arm to exit the room and found him staring at the closed jewelry box. "You're taking it off?"
"I think it's time, don't you?" Bonnie had been back for a few months now. Most of that time had been spent coordinating her cross country move, and figuring out where exactly she wanted to stay. She wanted to take things slow and do it the right way, so there would be no gossip, well, no more than usual.
"If that's what you want, yeah."
Bonnie paused in the doorway of the room, she hated hearing him sound so hesitant, like one wrong word from him would cause her to use the aforementioned ring to vanish once more. She'd caught him more than a few times glancing at it while they were hanging out, it must have been eating at him to have this very obvious reminder that she could leave at any time.
She turned to him, "I made my choice, and this is what I want." She linked his fingers with hers, "I'm sorry if my continuing to wear it caused you any kind of worry, I wasn't second guessing myself, it just became a habit."
"So why take it off now?" He rubbed the spot where the ring had rested.
"I figure if I'm going to really commit to being here and being a part of this coven, then I should act like it." Bonnie squeezed his hands, "I know you've been waiting for the other shoe to drop, but it's not going to, I'm here and I'm not going anywhere."
He dropped her hands and stepped closer, reaching up to cup her face in his hands, "Good cause while I would have hated to kick my own ass, I totally would have." He leaned in closer, and Bonnie pushed up on the tip of her toes to meet his lips with hers, but they were interrupted by someone clearing their throat.
"Don't mean to intrude." They both turned to see Lisa standing there with a cheeky grin. Liv was standing a bit behind Lisa with a hand over her eyes.
"Liar." Kai slid his hands down from her face to rub the side of her neck before letting go completely. Bonnie mentally pouted, they had had many talks since her decision to stay in her original world and be a part of his coven had been made. Even more talks about their burgeoning relationship and how slow they would be taking it as Bonnie got more settled into her new home.
But they still had yet to even kiss.
At this point, she was getting a little frustrated and was seconds away from taking matters into her own hands, so to speak. She wasn't sure if it was Kai giving her space or him being apprehensive about her comparing him to his other world counterpart, but it seemed every time they got close when they were alone, he found a way to pull back or they got interrupted.
"Come on, lovebirds, we got a festival to get to." Lisa tugged on Kai's arm to get him moving. They made their way outside to the waiting cars, as the coven head and his second, they would be arriving separately from everyone else. Kai leaned in close once more and gave her a peck on the cheek, "I'll save you a dance."
"I'll hold you to it." Bonnie straightened his tie before letting him go. She watched him go and turned to see Liv regarding her closely. "What?"
Liv waited until they were in their car and heading towards the venue before speaking, "I gotta admit, I was skeptical about Kai and if he would be a good leader, even with the merge, but he's actually not horrible. I'm not afraid he's gonna kill us all, and I think a good portion of that is because of you."
Bonnie shook her head, "He's always wanted this, Liv. It would be dumb as hell for him to kill everyone when he's finally gotten what he's always wanted."
"Why did you decide to give him a chance?" Liv asked, looking down at her hands, "Even with everything that he did to you, what he did to get thrown into the prison world, when did you decide he was worth it?"
'When I saw who he could have been when given the chance.' Bonnie thought to herself. Out loud she simply explained, "It would have been extremely hypocritical for me to accept all the carnage and crap that my friends did, and not give that same chance to Kai. At least he actually put in the work to actively try to change, and didn't blame anything he did on anyone else. He accepted the fact that what he did was unforgivable and still works to try and overcome it."
"I don't know if I'll ever be at ease with him," Liv was looking out the window at this point, "every time I look at him, I'm hoping to see some part of Luke there." Bonnie reached over to wrap her hand around Liv's, "But like I said, he's actually been good for the coven, and I trust your judgment so, I guess I can try."
"That's all he can ask of you." Bonnie looked down at their entwined hands and at the lack of the ring that had been on there constantly. It did look a little weird to not be wearing it, but the time felt right. She leaned back and thought of the last time she used it.
Once Kai broke the news that she had had the means to go back this entire time, Bonnie's first thought was to use it right then and there. But she waited until the next day to head out to the garden to activate it. She wanted to get her thoughts together, and look a little bit more presentable when she saw Kai again.
She took off the ring and pushed the minute button to get it to open up. Bonnie took a breath and started the incantation written on the bands; almost immediately she felt the now familiar feeling of being spirited up and away.
"Ow!" Jeez, for something that had been made for her, it didn't treat her any more kindly than the other ascendants. She closed her eyes and lay on the ground for a moment to catch her breath.
"Are you okay?"
"You fell from the sky!"
Bonnie's eyes popped open to see the frowning faces of Emily and Genevieve. Her eyes filled with tears as she took in the two girls that had become very dear to her. "I'm okay. How are you two? I've missed you." Bonnie sat up to try and pull them in for a hug, but they scrambled out of her reach. Bonnie's heart began to beat heavily in her chest, filling her with dread.
"Girls!" The call came from deeper in the gardens, it sounded like Kai had been calling them for a while. They took off, and Bonnie followed closely. She rounded a hedge and there he was, with a daughter under each arm.
"She fell from the sky, Daddy." Emily said in a hushed voice.
"Is she a fairy?" Genevieve asked, hiding a bit behind her father's legs. "You always said to stay away from fairies that suddenly appear."
Bonnie wanted to run straight into his arms, but something about his expression halted her. He leaned down to speak to his daughters, but kept an eye on Bonnie. The girls nodded, and waved to Bonnie before disappearing in a puff of smoke.
"Can I help you?" Was the first thing out of his mouth, and Bonnie couldn't hold it in anymore, she burst into tears. It wasn't said like he knew who she was and was mad that she took so long to come back, it was said more like he had no idea who she was.
"That question doesn't normally cause this kind of reaction." Any doubt she may have had about the situation was cleared up when he stayed where he was standing and didn't offer her any comfort. Just like that night in Lucy's kitchen, back when they first met.
Bonnie finally sobered up, "I'm guessing you have no idea who I am?"
He tilted his head, "Am I supposed to?"
Bonnie swore she felt her heart break, this was worse than someone rejecting her, or cheating on her with a ghost, this was someone who had no knowledge of their entire relationship. "Okay, this was a bad idea."
"Maybe not, why don't you stick around and we can talk." Bonnie glared at him, "Don't use your coven leader voice on me, Kai. You know I hate it when you try to manage me."
"Actually, no I don't." He took a step closer, "I have no idea who you are."
"I know." Bonnie whispered. "This fucking sucks." She sat heavily on a bench. "I have no idea what happened." She was talking to herself at this time, "Was it the amount of time I was away that did it?"
"Amount of time away?" She looked up to see Kai closer than before, "You were here before?"
Bonnie simply offered her ring to him. He gingerly took it from her and looked at his right hand, where the same ring was sitting on his fourth ring finger. "How the hell?" He looked at her in surprise, "Okay, I'm listening." Bonnie spared no detail and told him everything. From how she first ended up in his world, to how she managed to get back.
"Well, that's…..that's a lot to digest." He ran a hand through his hair and sat down heavily next to her. They both sat in silence for a while. "So, what was the plan, Bonster?"
Bonnie half-laughed, half-sobbed at the nickname that he'd slid back into so easily. "I don't know, I thought I'd come back and we'd pick up where we left off, I guess."
"Is that really what you wanted?"
"Yes, and it was what you wanted too!" Bonnie felt her temper rise, "If not, then why give me the damn ring, Kai?" Bonnie demanded, "Why make sure that I had a way to get back here to this world specifically?"
"I can't say for sure." He frowned and looked down at the ring on his hand, "Why did it take so long for other me to realize it was the ring? He should have felt the magic it held whenever he was around it."
Bonnie looked away guiltily, "I didn't always wear it around him. Especially when I first got back, I kept it hidden. I only started wearing it when-" She cut herself off when it dawned on her.
"When…?" Kai prompted.
"When I started spending more time with the Kai in my world." Bonnie answered softly. "When I began thinking of him as more than just a means to an end. I was worried that I was forgetting you and my life here, so I started wearing it again as a reminder."
"See, what I think" Kai turned towards her, "Is that it was locked, until he felt that you were ready to make a choice."
"But how would you….he even know? Clearly something reset when I left, you have no idea who I am, and I'm sitting next to you. How could you know what I was thinking worlds away?" Bonnie was so confused.
"Maybe he was planning on that, you did say he seemed to have a lot of information that you didn't." Kai shrugged, "But hear me out, maybe he wanted you to make a fully informed choice."
"I don't understand." Bonnie admitted.
Kai gave her a half smile, "Look at it this way, it was only too easy for you to choose to stay here when everything in your world was shit. But now that you've moved past much of what you ran from, how do you feel about your world now?"
"I.." Bonnie started to reply reflexively, but stopped to think. Yes, her father was still dead, and Abby was still in the wind. She had no clue where Lucy was, but she could find her if she tried. She'd broken away from the toxic environment in Mystic Falls and struck out on her own, she had a life that was uniquely hers and hers alone.
She even had a budding relationship with the Kai in her world. If she chose to stay in this world, she'd have to start all over from scratch and build up their relationship all over again, which she didn't necessarily have a problem with. But there was a niggling thought in the back of her head: wasn't she already doing just that with the Kai in her home world? They had gotten off to the worst of starts, yet they had somehow managed to not only build a friendship, but possibly something more.
"Maybe he knew that if you left, things wouldn't be the same once you found your way back." Kai was still musing over her situation. "Or maybe he wasn't planning on you coming back at all. Maybe your trip here was just a glimpse of what you could have if you worked at it."
"That's a lot of maybes." Bonnie said glumly. "How do I choose? How do I know where to go?"
"I don't think there's one right answer. It just all depends on what or who you want more."
Bonnie jolted to awareness at the young man holding her door open. She looked around, Liv had already exited the vehicle and was busy adjusting her dress.
"Sorry about that." She took his hand and allowed herself to be escorted to the entrance of the hall. All around her were people dressed to the nines, she half wanted to take a picture to send back to Caroline. She knew the blonde would get a kick out of some of the attire that Bonnie was seeing.
Her escort started to lead Bonnie to her seat, but was waylaid by Kai himself. "I got this one, Jimmy." The young warlock's eyes briefly widened before stepping back and allowing Kai to steer her away.
"What are you doing?" Bonnie hissed, swatting at his arm.
Kai nonchalantly tucked her hand in the crook of his elbow, "Who me? Nothing, just about to waste a few good hours with people who are actively rooting for me to fall flat on my face." As it happened at that very moment Joshua Parker walked by escorting Lisa's mother.
"Speaking people that want to see you fall flat on your face." Bonnie muttered.
Annalise's dislike of her wasn't as virulent as it was in the other world, but she still made no bones about the fact that she didn't like Bonnie or how she had been raised.
Kai snorted, "Oh don't mind her, she's still pissed that Lisa decided to tell her to go to hell and invited her girlfriend anyway."
Bonnie whipped her head around to look for Lisa, finally spotting her standing next to a table holding the hand of a pretty brunette dressed in a killer body con dress. "Well damn, go head Lisa." Bonnie cheered her on.
"Besides" Kai continued, moving them so they were in the back of the processional line, "people should get used to seeing us together."
"Oh really?" Bonnie hid a smile, this was one of the main reasons she decided to come back to her world. She had the opportunity to not just join a coven, but help shape and mold it into something that was representative of the world they lived in today.
As much as Bonnie cared for the other Kai, she couldn't deny that a part of her would always feel as if she were running to catch up to him. He had a good almost 20 year head-start on her, he was already a father! With this Kai, they would get to grow and mature together and she would get to have a front row seat to watch Kai become the man and leader that he was always meant to be.
Lisa was still Kai's second in command, and there was still a council, that couldn't be done away with without causing some serious waves, but Kai had started appointing advisers that were more in touch with the times.
Bonnie was one of those appointees, she took great pleasure in being a part of a team that spread outward to reach out to other supernatural species on behalf of the Gemini Coven. She did briefly wonder if people would think that she got her position simply due to her proximity to Kai, but she was quickly reassured that her nomination had sailed through with no issues. The council liked the fact that she had proven that she could more than hold her own, and her past experience working with vampires and werewolves (not to mention Originals) made her a perfect choice for the team. She relished getting out there and learning more about not only her magic heritage, but other types of beings as well.
"You ready for this?" Kai asked under his breath, just as they were about to clear the door. Bonnie nodded and lifted her chin in determination, she had literally crossed worlds to be here at this moment, and right now there wasn't any other place she'd rather be.
A/N: WHEW! What started out as a simple one shot is now finished! Like I mentioned before (cause I cant seem to leave anything alone) this will be kinda like my Mystic Fall Redux verse where I may dip in and out to add a little more to the story if I get the urge. A big thank you to everyone for sticking with me on this, this fandom friggin rocks!