Summary: Destiny can be cruel. Klaus/Caroline. Day #12 of The Month of Caroline challenge. Complete.
On her seventeenth birthday, Caroline Forbes receives a strange ring containing a large, dark blue stone that she later learns to be lapis lazuli set gorgeously between a ring of smaller diamonds. It fits perfectly on her finger and she hides it compulsively at the bottom of her jewelry box.
Her life proceeds as normal(-ish), up until the point an Elena imposter addresses Caroline as a familiar acquaintance before suffocating the blonde with a pillow.
Then everything begins to happen very fast.
This fic starts off with incredible normality, and if you are familiar with the author’s previous works, then you will become aware immediately that the story will build into something unexpected.
And unexpected it is.
Less of a fic, more of a timeline drabble, Pretty Girl follows innocent Caroline and her give into Klaus’ corruption. The fic is neither explicitly detailed nor extremely descriptive, but, be wary, for it is indeed dark.
The fic can be split into three parts for its three chapters. The first follows Caroline’s journey from mysteriously receiving the ring to her journey back in time to 1472. It is the chapter with the lightest tone, but it is not necessarily light, carrying slightly creepy undertones from all the cryptic advice Caroline is given. The second part is dark, set with Caroline under Klaus’ thumb from 1472 up until Katerina is discovered. It contains brief, though not explicit, scenes of torture and both physical and mental manipulation. It is incredibly interesting to watch Caroline crack under Klaus’ control and eventually transform into a crueler and darker character. The third and final part is the darkest, showing Caroline’s interactions with Katerina, a dalliance with Kol, and her involvement in the events that sent past!Caroline back in time. This last chapter is twisty and definitely not what anyone would expect. It certainly pulled a few gasps from me.
Truly, there are not any main characters, singularly Caroline. Even Klaus can be considered a fairly background character, though Katherine, Elijah, Stefan, Damon, and Kol play minor roles.
Caroline’s descent from a loveable, awkward human to a cruel and manipulative vampire wedded to Klaus is believable enough for this fic to be enjoyable. Klaus is realistic for the cold-hearted Original Hybrid seen in the latter half of Season 2 and the first half of Season 3. Katherine is cunning and vengeful, and Elijah is wise and loyal. Both are characterized perfectly. Damon and Stefan, their roles the smallest, have little opportunity to be fully-developed.
Pretty Girl makes for a very non-complicated and (strangely enough) calming read, because each scene is only several paragraphs, and Seph Meadowes’ timeline flows very quickly. Occasionally the reader may lose track of the events and may be forced to reread the last couple scenes, but Pretty Girl is still pretty easy to follow.
The chemistry between Klaus and Caroline is fiery and everything it is in canon, though having read past works of the author, I wish that she could have added her own interpretation of Klaroline a bit more. Except for strange grammatical and spelling errors (for those who are picky about that), the fic is well-written with a shocking finale that involves the death of not one, but two, major characters that I loved, though I wished for a bit more substance to her scenes.
Overall, Pretty Girl is enjoyable and an older, moderately-dark fic that contains enough of canon for any Klaroliner, and while it is not a must-read, Pretty Girl will have the reader gasping and shocked as the climax approaches.