“Eric, you have been studying that book forever.” Pam says, as she walks into my safe house. We have been moving from place to place for the last week. I am concerned that a takeover is imminent. The question is by whom? The most logical is Nevada. But New England, or the Gotham Territory could easily take us. My contacts have all been on alert to be available to me at a moment’s notice. I don’t care what my current position is, being over 1000 years has it’s benefits and long list of those loyal to me.
Let’s face it, Louisiana is weak and we are ripe for a takeover. We have been for some time. Since before Katrina, Sophie-Anne has not been making friends anywhere in the Supe community and with the hurricane and now the disaster in Rhodes and the death of her second, Sophie is completely incapacitated, which is perfect for any monarch to come in and take control. She hasn’t always been like this. Her mood changes and defiance only occurred after Arkansas double crossed her and the final death of her favorite pet, Hadley. From what I gather, not soon after Hadley was changed, she ran. She was found in a house burned to the ground. Several other bodies were found in the building. By all accounts, they were human, however they were killed before the house went up. From what I’d been told, Hadley killed the family and then allowed herself to be burned alive. Why she did this, no one knows. There was a whisper that one of the inhabitants was a young child. Why Hadley did what she did, is a mystery. Most just think that the turn did something to drive her mad.
Either way, Hadley’s death greatly affected the queen. It just so happens that Hadley happens to be the reason Sookie ever appeared on the Vampire radar. If fate isn’t without irony, Hadley was my Sookie’s cousin. To keep in the favor of the queen, she would tell stories of her “crazy” cousin who could hear others around her were thinking. That is what put Sookie in Sophie’s sights and started the havoc in her life for the past few years. One could say that if Sophie didn’t send someone to investigate the young Ms. Stackhouse, I would have never met her. But I think otherwise. I feel it more than anything that I have felt in my long life that I would have met my telepathic lover regardless of Sophie’s involvement.
But when Hadley was reported missing and then confirmed finally dead, Sophie changed. Yes, I believe that was the turning point. Before that, she was trying to make an attempt to comply with Council. She has always been a little, well out there. But in the past year or so she has been downright eccentric. Now that her Queendom needed help, she acted like no one was on her side. Not that Sophie would ask for help, especially from the Council. At this point, they may purposely deny her any assistance regardless of her pleas. Knowing this, her Sheriffs have repeatedly urged her to contact them, but she will not. So myself and the other Sheriffs of Louisiana have been doing what we can to protect our businesses, our retinues and the territory. Despite the ramblings of a slowly healing Queen that has clearly lost her way.
I should really take the throne Regardless of my feelings for Sophie, she has not only gone behind my back numerous times, but has bragged about it. Sending those beneath me into my territory was just plain ridiculous. I should have killed Compton the moment he entered my bar. I should have known that snake oil salesman was up to something. However, I needed to know what he was up too. Knowing what I know now, I would have taken Sookie from him that very night and watched him back himself into a corner. Then I would have killed him painfully and slowly. Now, with the situation we find ourselves in, I need him. For nothing else, I need his help in keeping my willful and stubborn telepath safe. Even without my memories, I should have just taken her out of that one stop light town and forced her to stay with me. She may have hated me for it, but she would be out of harms way.
I close my eyes, yes, I should take the throne and be done with it. But I am aware of several things. One, I don’t truly want to be that involved in politics. I like the life I have carved out of Northern Louisiana. True I am the largest area around, I have the loyalty of hundreds of Vampires and the respect of many of the Supes, but for the most part, I am left alone to make my living, run my businesses and entertain myself with whomever I see fit. If truth be told, I control more than anyone realizes, including Pam. I have many secrets and even more fingers in more pots, stirring fate more than she would ever imagine. If I just stay where I am, I can be as Godric once was, ruling in silence. Unfortunately that plan seems to be slowly dissolving around me. It was a good plan until this craziness began.
Oh, let us not forget my Bonding to the beautiful Sookie Stackhouse. Having her in my life has made it interesting and difficult all at the same time. The second reason is because of my Bonded. My Sookie hates vampire politics. After dealing with Bill, Rhodes, the Queen and everything else, who could blame her? I am quite aware that she will never accept me if I take the throne. Contrary to my mutterings of my perfect life, if I knew without a doubt that she would accept my decision, I would take control in a heartbeat. It would be the safest for all of us. But I fought too hard and waited too long to have her. I will not lose Sookie now. Even with many of those in my retinue, here and extend who are grumbling at my decision.
Yes, if I had to do over, I would have taken her that first night at Fantasia. I should never have listen to that fool Compton. I should have read her better. I should have known she was untouched. How could he have claimed her if she hadn’t yielded to him yet? Things would have been different if I didn’t let me, yes, my pride, blind my vision of what I was seeing in front of me. Sookie should have been mine. She shouldn’t have had to deal with the likes of Compton, the Queen or anyone else. If only I allowed myself to step back, life would have been different for all of us. But thinking like that will get me and those who rely on me nowhere. I am weak to allow someone as weak and frail as Sookie to control my actions. I will never admit how much she controls me to anyone. If those who wish us harm knew, we would both be in more danger than we are already.
Regardless of my denial, it changes nothing. Oh yes, if Sookie would agree to be by my side, I would take Louisiana this very night. But alas, here I sit, waiting to protect a Queen that doesn’t have the common sense to save herself while those who rely on me wait for my next move. This game of chess I’m playing has become more and more complicated as time has elapsed.
“You haven’t heard a thing I’ve said,” Pam whines at me.
I look up to see my child’s hand on her hip. If I had been paying attention, I’m sure I would have heard her stomp her foot at me.
I look her up and down. She is in her normal attire this evening, pale pink sweater set and long gray skirt with matching pumps; a far cry from her normal Fangtasia attire. My Pam always looks like she would be perfect in the role of Donna Reed with her sweater sets and soft colors. A far cry from what the tourists think of us. Pam would rather be in soft things and be pampered than attracting the tourists at Fangtasia. I’ve told her time and time again, that I would release her to go out on her own, but she ignores me and goes back to what she was currently doing. Regardless of her two hundred years, she still acts like a spoiled baby of a family.
It is funny, Vampires have lived on the earth for centuries and they all think we dress like we are Marilyn Manson fans. I must admit that some of us like to play the part, but for the most part, we find a era of fashion and wait for it to come around again. It always does. Me, I am partial to jeans and t-shirts. But a good silk suit has its purpose as well. Tonight, I am in my normal dress of dark jeans, silk t-shirt and biker boots.
Watching Pam tap her foot I am brought back to our current argument. “Pam, I need to remember. You don’t understand, I need to…”
“You need to stop this, Eric.” She says to me. “You are in love with that telepath, which is just ridiculous but you are. The feelings are confusing you and you want to know why. But can’t you just accept the feelings and be done with it? It isn’t like you have anything to fear. I’ve seen women fall at your feet for years. That is not surprising or new. Sookie is no different.” She huffs. “That little telepath loves you just as much as you love her. She is just waiting on you to come to terms with your heart.” She says to me.
I haven’t admitted it to anyone. But yes, I love Sookie Stackhouse. I have loved her from the moment I saw her. Before our time in Dallas, or Rhodes, or Jackson, before the bond and her insistence on helping the Were community. She has been in my every thought since that night she arrived like a candle in the darkness at Fangtasia. I shake my head. Yes, I should have taken her then. I would have none of these problems if I had taken her then.
“She needs to know I know. She needs the proof.” I say to Pam as I keep looking through yet another section of this infernal “Book of Shadows.” I never thought I would be in possession of one. And yet, here I am, searching for the key that can unlock my past to make way for my future.
“Why?” She asks sitting down. “I don’t understand why it matters?” She throws her arms up in the air. “She’s a human, Eric, in a few decades…”
I growl at her. I don’t want her to finish that sentence.
She immediately changes her tune and bows her head. “I meant no disrespect, master,” she says softly.
It has been this way since Sookie came into our lives. Like a petulant child, Pam doesn’t like to share. This is why I’ve kept so much from her over the years. The less she knows, the better. I trust Pam as her master, but her spoiled, childlike ways could have caused me and mine worlds of trouble over the years. I know someday she will need to be made aware of things. But for now, it is best to keep her as in the dark as the day I turned her.
She sighs. “Dear Abby says that to follow your heart is the best course of action in the matters of love. As much as I hate it, you love her. She is a chink in your armor, Eric, but you love her. You are allowing your head to control your emotions.”
“Indeed,” I say and turn yet another page, “but I need those memories. Sookie fell in love with that man she had at her home. She fell for the man who had no ties to politics or battles or the Queen. I need to remember him.” I say to her. “It’s the only way for her to yield. She has been hurt too much by too many to give into her feelings without knowing. She needs this proof of my love and I will find it.”
I pray to the goddess for guidance as I flip back through the book. It lands on a page I have not read before.
Find a lost love. It reads. To find and return your one true love to you; find the path that will fulfill your destiny.
“Pam I think this is it.” I say to her.
Pam moves behind me to read the text. After we have both read it, Pam looks at me.
“You are willing to do this. What if it isn’t what you are looking for?” She asks me. “Witchcraft always has a price, Eric, you know this. What if this isn’t it and something else happens to you?”
I ignore her whining. I’ve gotten very good at it over the years.
“I know this is it.” I say. “I am willing to risk it.”
“You are willing to risk it? What about the rest of us, Eric? What about me? Do you know what we went through when you lost your memory? My God Eric, Stan called me every day wanting to talk to you. He was harder to put off than the Queen. I swear he KNEW there was something wrong with you.”
Without answering her, I look at Pam. “Weren’t you going to see Amelia?” I ask.
“Eric!” She screams at me.
“Mind your tone, little one. You are not far off from a punishment.” I growl at her. It has been ages since I punished Pam. I know I should do it more often, but she is just a baby. Okay, I allow her to be the baby. And like a child that came late in a parent’s life, I allow her lenience that I shouldn’t.
I give her a stern look. “I asked if you would be seeing Amelia tonight?”
I know that is the case. She has been ordered to watch Sookie. With this Jonathan Vampire running around, I wanted her safe. It was just another reason I should have moved her in with me months ago, but my Sookie would hear nothing of it. I have many feelers out attempting to find out who this Jonathan is and who his sire is. But like me, he seems to have many secrets. The question is, do I have more power to find out who he is than he has to keep his secrets safe.
“Yes, I will be leaving now. But do not do this without me here.” Pam points to the book.
“Go and do what you are expected to do.” I say to her as a dismissal. “And don’t forget to call Cleo.” I remind her. Since the death of Andre and Sophie being laid up since Rhodes, We have been using the call chain to keep track of everything in the state, nightly. It is imperative that we maintain order and this seems to be the best way to do it.
“Do I ever forget?” She asks and walks out the door.
I look at the book again and then look at the computer in front of me. My screen saver is of my sweet beautiful Sookie. I look at it again. How could someone who shows so much love and compassion to others still be so scared of love? Is it Compton or the tiger or me who made her this way? She couldn’t have always been this cynical. From what I’ve heard of her, she was pure and innocent before meeting Compton. Other than the fools in Bon Temps, she had no problems before Compton appeared in her life. What if I was the first to meet her? Would she still be so scared to follow what is clearly in her heart?
I need her to believe that I love her. Not just want to control her. I am sure she has felt a little through the bond. Though I try to close my side off as much as possible, I am sure she has felt it. I have tried to show her through actions and deeds? Is that not enough for her to know what is in my heart? Perhaps my current course of distancing myself is not the way to go. Perhaps I should do as Pam insists and follow my heart. But how is Pam so sure that her heart is in line with mine. How can I be certain that the damage that has been done to her heart can be repaired with my love? How can she love me when she clearly hates the life I live?
I feel her emotions change every time I am with her. A simple touch from me seems to calm her. My presence seems to bring her happiness. At least, that is what it feels like. I can only hope that by remembering our time together, I can show her that the man she met on that road that night is the real me. That the love and emotions I expressed to her is who I am. But I have to remember that time to be absolutely sure. I need to remind her of the time we were together. I have to prove to her that her thoughts, wants and desires are paramount to me. I need her to yield and be mine.
The phone rings, brining me out of my thoughts.
“Speak,” I say as I pick up the disposable phone in front of me. Only several people have this number so I know it must be important.
“I’ve news,” I hear Stan, King of Texas say.
“What?” I ask.
“Eric, this vampire, Jonathan Cox, was seen in Las Vegas not three weeks ago,” he says. “Apparently, it was only known by those closest to deCastro. He left not twenty-four hours after his arrival. He then had a stop over in Seattle, New Orleans and finally landing in Bon Temps per your telepath’s report. According to what you’ve told me, I’ve confirmed that he didn’t check in anywhere he’s been.” He pauses. “Oh, and there was a transfer of funds from an offshore account to Cox’s personal account the day after he flew from Las Vegas and then another one when he left Seattle. Two different accounts and are from two different origins.” He pauses again. “You want Pam to look into the accounts?” He asks.
“No, I trust you with the source and information.” I say to him.
He laughs. “Don’t want her involved? Really Eric…”
“A conversation for another time. What else do you have for me?” I ask him.
He sighs. “No one has seen or heard from deCastro or his bulldog, Madden in three days. My sources say that he left for a much needed rest, but his plane hasn’t been reported to touch down anywhere. Madden, left the day after. Again, his plane hasn’t been reported. I spoke with Dax and Jennifer as well. They are searching for both of them. No one has seen them. I’m worried, Eric.” He says the last softly.
“Agreed,” I say to him. “I will call you back before sunset. If you hear from anyone…”
“Don’t worry, Eric, I will let you know. Don’t you think…” He says.
“Stanaslov, we will speak on this tomorrow.” I say to him.
He sighs. “Of course, Eric, I know you have much to deal with now. Any thoughts on how you will regain your memories?” He asks.
I look to the book. “A few,” I say. “I will have more to tell you before I go to ground. I will speak to you then.”
He is quiet for a moment. “I…I would feel better if I sent some others to you, Eric.” He says.
I smile. “I understand,” I say to him. “But if you do, that will only arouse suspicion.”
“Eric, the Council…”
Stan has been seated on the council for a decade. It suited him in ways that he didn’t understand fully.
“If what is to happen comes to fruition, Council will want to allow it to play out.” I say to him.
“No, Eric, I told you…”
“I know what you told me. Now is not the time.” I say and close my eyes and sigh. “Fine, if you don’t hear from me by dawn, send who you wish to send.” I say to him.
I can hear the relief in his voice. “Thank you, Eric.”
We say our goodbyes and I hang up. I hope to not reveal my connection to the King of Texas and the Council just yet. However, if two major threats have gone missing only two things could be inferred. Either they are planning or they are dead.
I look back to the book. I know this will work. I read the directions for the incantation. I need two drops of my blood and something that has come in contact with the love in question. I move to the closet to retrieve the cape I wore the day we bonded, and the day she woke me at Rhodes. I covered us both with it as we rode the coffin down. I smile remembering that time. It was horrid and unquestionably deplorable but my Sookie came back for me. She could have left, but she came back for me. Not for Quinn, nor Bill, but for me.
I look back at the book. This has to work. I will not allow that horrid Witch to win. Nor will I allow my territory to come under attack with my hands tied the way they are now. I will regain my memory, I will secure Sookie to my side and then I will make sure none will harm us again.
I read the instructions one last time. I move to my living room, grabbing three white candles along the way. Sitting them on the table, I light them. Taking the pooling wax, I create a pentagram between them and close my eyes for a moment. Praying to the Goddess that this will work. Opening my eyes, I look back to the book, laid on the table beside me. Following the directions, I read the incantation.
As I finish the last stanza it’s almost like a door has opened in my mind. All the memories come flooding back to me. I watch as the memories play out like scenes from a movie. I see them flashing in front of my eyes. From the time I met her on the road to her attending to my feet and taking my clothes to clean. Then I see me sitting on the floor close to her while Pam tries to explain to me who I was. The only feeling I had at the time was that I could only trust Sookie.
Then I see images of us in the shower and after and then her room, the living room, the kitchen table. Then the nights after, spending them in my sweet Sookie’s arms and holding her until almost dawn.
Fighting beside her in the witch war and then searching frantically for her after. Telling her that I would leave everything for her and also telling her that all who owe fealty to me would worship her. Then I see what we did to that psychotic Were that tried to kill my Sookie. Then finally, waking and remembering who I was and wondering how I got to Sookie’s house. I remember the look on Sookie’s face when she realized I didn’t remember our time together.
I sit back into my seat and place my face in my hands. I sit there for what feels like hours
“Oh, what have I done?” I ask her. “I have hurt her so.” I say softly. “No, I should have known. I feel nothing new. I have always loved her from the first time I saw her. Just when I lost myself, I allowed myself to show it. To let the feelings surround me. To allow her to see what was inside of me. But to forget our time together is just unbearable. Oh, how she has suffered.” I say.
I need to get to her. I need her to know. I need her to feel what I feel for her.
Just as I am about to leave to find her, the phone on my desk rings.
“Northman.” I say.
“Northman, it is Rasul. The compound is under attack, deCastro has ordered the takeover of Louisiana. The Queen is no more. Word is coming in that Cleo has fallen and Arla Yvonne is going to ground. We cannot get in touch with anyone in Arkansas.” He says. “Madden is on his way to you. Eric, he knows of your Bonded.”
I listen to his words. Louisiana has fallen. Sophie is no more. deCastro now rules. I close my eyes and allow parts of myself to open. I know in an instant that several in Arkansas are still alive, particularly Jennifer Cater. I know several are with her but who, I’m not sure.
“How many at the compound have fallen?” I ask him.
“The twins went defending the Queen. Others have fallen. I am heading there now. I was at the Monastery when I received word.” He says.
“Very well, take care.” I say to him.
“As you, Eric, I hope to meet you on the other side of this.” He says and hangs up.
I grab my sword and take off out the back door of my safe house to my Sookie. I only hope that I get there in time.
Speaking to Pam, on my flight, she has informed me that she left Sookie in the hands of her witch and Compton and headed to Fangtasia when she heard of Cleo’s demise. Though, I am angry that she has left my bonded, I will deal with that later. As of right now, I need to get to her.
I make my way to Sookie’s house and can tell that several people are in there, including Bill.
“Bill, let me in, the sooner the better.” I say.
Bill moves to the door and I come in at Vampire Speed. “I have heard from New Orleans, Sophie has met her final death.” I say. “They are heading toward the club and my safe houses are not good, not alone.” I look over to Sookie. The look in her eyes stops me. I want to pull her to me and tell her, tell her everything. But now is not the time. We need to plan. We are all that is left of the old regime. I will be dead by dawn and Sookie will be in the hands of the King of Nevada if I can’t come up with something.
“Sookie, I must once again impose on your hospitality.” I say to her softly, trying to tell her with my eyes everything that I need to in these hours that could be my last.
“Absolutely,” she says. “But maybe we should move…”
Before she is able to finish that thought my phone rings. I look down to see that it’s Pam.
“Eric, everyone is here. Scouts have reported that there is a band of Nevada vamps on the outskirts of Shreveport. Once they are disposed of we will head to you.” Pam says. “Stan called just moments ago and told me to tell you that reinforcements are heading your way.”
I should have known, once word reached him, there would be no stopping him from sending aide.
“Make it quick, Pamela.” I say. “I believe I will need you here.”
“Take care Eric.” She says.
“As you, my childe.” I say and hang up.
I look at the room full of people. “Pam has a group ready to come to help as soon as they dispose of the invaders in Shreveport. Hopefully we will be able to hold up here until they arrive.” I say.
“Maybe Pam will arrive before they do?” Sookie asks.
But as if on cue, I can here cars pulling up the driveway to Compton’s house.
I hear the doors open and people walking through the graveyard. Before I can tell Sookie and Amelia what to do, I hear a knock. Not on the door, but on the porch column.
Amelia pumps her fists to the sky. Her wards must be holding. There is nothing wrong with a little self-celebratory cheer. But it is only brief as we here the chant of a witch.
I open the door to see Victor Madden standing next to a small petite woman chanting away. I can see a shimmering haze around the house. I look back to see Amelia seated on a chair close to the front hall, chanting as well. I take it that she is trying to hold the wards as the other witch is trying to take them down. It would have been a better advantage if Amelia’s teacher were here. But alas, she isn’t. We will need to do what we can until the reinforcements arrived.
“Eric Northman,” Victor says. “I didn’t expect you to be here.” He smirks at me.
Where else would I be? I think to myself. It is known that he is after my bonded. Why would he think that I was anywhere but where she is? If anything would happen to her… I don’t want to think about it.
“I would have suspected you to be in Shreveport. That is your base of operation, is it not?” He asks me.
“You bring how many vampires to take one Telepath?” I ask Him. “What did you expect to find when you arrived?” I ask him. Not answering his question.
“A dozen Vampires and seven Weres, including Quinn,” Sookie says softly to me so no one else can here.
“Now, why do I need anyone but me and my witch to take your Telepath?” He asks.
“Sookie, get your gun out of the hall closet.” I say to her without losing eye contact with Victor. “It may not kill anyone but you may be able to slow someone down.” I say to her.
She moves to the closet and then stops. “How did you…”
I break my gaze away from Madden and move away from the door, looking into my Sookie’s eyes. Understanding begins to set in as she comes closer to me, placing her hand on my face.
I kiss her softly. “Now is not the time,” I say as I look directly into her eyes. “He will not harm you. You will be safe.” I say to her.
I can see the tears in her eyes. “And you?” She asks.
I place my hand on hers. “I will die the final death for you, my sweet Sookie. You are too precious a gift to lose.”
“Eric, I wish to speak to you.” Madden says from the front yard.
I turn back to him and paste my smirk on my face. “You bring a dozen Vampires and more than ½ a dozen Weres to take one little telepath?” I ask him. “It seems that communication is the last thing on your mind.”
He smirks. “Oh your Telepath is handy now isn’t she?” He says.
A silent command has been given because all Madden’s entourage comes into view. Quinn appears in tiger form. Not wanting to face Sookie, no doubt.
That tiger will look nicely as a throw rug when I am done with him.
I turn to Bill who nods at me. I look to Amelia who looks like she is straining under the weight of holding the wards. Finally I rest my eyes on Sookie. She has retrieved the gun and is standing behind me. The pain in her eyes is almost palatable. I open the bond on my side and flood it with the love I feel for her.
She gasps as her eyes go wider as she looks at me. For just a moment, nothing else exists but what I see in her eyes. Suddenly, I feel the same strong emotions mirroring back at me.
I smile softly at her. “Always remember that.” I say.
I take a step onto the porch before Sookie can say a word.
I look straight at Madden. “I will come with you if you promise that Sookie will be kept safe.” I say to him.
“Oh,” Madden laughs. “I don’t think you are in any position to make any demands.” He says. “What happens to the Telepath is well, out of your reach now.” He laughs. “Her fate sits with the new King of Louisiana and by extension, me.” He licks his lips. “Don’t worry about her. she is no longer your concern.”
The anger and furry rise in me as I think of either of these vial creatures with their hands on my bonded. If I had my way, death would be slow and painful for both of them.
Quinn moves forward and I can see him looking at Sookie inside the door.
“Quinn, I will never forgive you for this.” She shouts.
He looks at her again and then down at the ground. I have no understanding of what happened between them or why he is freely helping Nevada to ascertain her. I just hope that when the chance arrives, it is I that gets to kill him.
Several things happen at once. I see the shimmering light dim around the house, Madden makes his way onto the porch and Bill grabs Sookie with a scream for all of Bon Temps to here.
“I have her Madden.” Bill says.
I look at him confused but then clarity fills me.
“Good,” Madden says. “The King will reward you Compton.” He says.
I look from Madden to Bill. “You were the mole.” I say to him. For months we suspected that there were moles in the Queens court as well as in Shreveport. We just were not certain on who they were. Now, I know. I should have guessed that it was Compton. He was willing to ascertain Sookie for the Queen. Using any means necessary to bring her around. He was willing to leave her without a moment’s notice and return to his maker. Why would he not decide to turn on her again? I go to lunge at him but stop when I see that he has Sookie’s neck in biting position.
Bill smiles at me. “I felt the wind changing, Eric. You should have changed with me.” He says and then looks down at Sookie. “Is she really worth all this?” Bill grabs my Sookie tight and tries to kiss her but she turns her head away. “Ohh, she smells so good. I haven’t had her in so long. I can’t wait to touch her. I hope she thinks of you when I do. I hope you can feel it through your bond. Oh wait a minute, that’s right, you will meet your final death before I change her.” He laughs.
“Compton, you will not be changing her. The King has already made his decision on what is to happen to Ms. Stackhouse.” Madden turns to talk to the Vampires behind him.
“We had a deal!” Bill shouts.
“It has been altered. Pray it isn’t altered some more.” Madden says.
I take that moment to advance on Madden while sending courage through the bond to my Sookie. Just as I am about to grab Madden I feel a sudden pain in my side. I look to see that the witch has stuck me with something. Silver, she has stabbed me with Silver.
Madden turns back around. “Oh, Northman, I hate to see such a strong Vampire go down, especially trying to protect a blood bag.” He laughs.
I hear several Vampires landing on the roof and in the yard. I don’t need to see her to know it is Pam with reinforcements from Stan. Within seconds, I hear the clanks of swords all around me. Then I hear the unmistakable sound of “pops”. I look up to see Niall and several other Fae take up point on the porch.
“What is the Fae doing here?” I hear Madden shout.
I take the distraction to gain an upper hand. Leaping into the air, I land in the yard to join the fight. Letting out a battle cry I go after two Weres in front of me, taking them down with consecutive strikes. I turn to see that Bill has released Sookie as he goes to fight Pam and Thalia on the lawn. I look back at My Bonded to see that she has been given a sword. Wielding it as if she has been a master for years, she is attempting to get through a Were to the witch who seems to be chanting again. I turn back to the fight. I need to get the numbers down if I wish to get back to my Sookie.
The fight lasts several minutes until I see many of the Nevada Vampires have fallen. Just as I am going to advance on Compton, I see him take off into the sky. I am about to take off after him when I hear a blood curdling scream from the front of the house.
“Eric!” I turn toward the sound.
Looking up I see the blue eyes of my beloved. The look no longer seems brilliant but clouded.
“You are more trouble than you are worth.” Victor says as he pulls out an iron dagger from Sookie’s side and shoves it into her heart. “How did you call them so quickly?” He asks as he turns in the direction of the four Fae in the yard. “No matter, with you alive, Felipe will be in danger. Your death will be nothing,” he growls. “You die tonight!” He screams at her.
I fly to her side but Victor takes off before I can get there and I have a choice to either catch my love or go after Madden. I chose the former.
I look around and the Nevada vamps are retreating as I look down at Sookie. Without thinking, I tear into my wrist to put it to her lips. Just before it touches her, I feel someone grabbing it.
“NO, you can’t.” Niall says with tears in his eyes. In 1000 years, I never thought I would see this man cry.
I look back to Sookie. Picking her up, I carry her into the house.
I carry my beloved into the house and down to her room. We are both very weak and I can barely make it there.
“Leave NOW!” I scream at the top of my lungs.
“Eric, I…” I look over my shoulder to see Pam. The pain in her eyes matches that in my undead heart. “Find Bill, Find Madden. I want them both meeting their final death before sunrise.” I say to her.
I look through her to see the rest of the people who thought they could save my Sookie. We thought we all could save her. We were wrong.
Our side lost several companions; Warriors that should be hailed as heroes in my book. But alas, it wasn’t enough to protect my beloved Sookie.
I look right at Niall. “I..this...” I can’t speak.
“Northman, you need to leave her to us, we need to take her home.” He says.
I look at him. “No one is taking her anywhere. She is mine. I will not leave her, not again.” I look at him. “My blood, it’s very old…maybe.”
He shakes her head. “It is beyond all of us now.” He says.
I look back to my Sookie. “Leave us.” I whisper.
Everyone, including my child leaves the room and I slam the door closed.
Niall told me just as I was going to give Sookie my blood that there was nothing I could do. My blood was tainted from the sliver Madden’s Witch had stabbed me with. They must have known that nothing short of poisoning me was going to keep me from Sookie. They must have also suspected the Fae would come, which means they all know what Sookie is.
She tried to get away, I saw that. And when the fighting started, she somehow got away from Compton and went after the witch. From what I gather, she sliced her down where she stood. I don’t know how she did it, but she was so brave. My Sookie was always so brave.
Now I am standing here watching her die and I can’t do anything about it. She is even too gone to turn.
I sit beside her, pulling her into my arms. “Sookie, I am so sorry.” I say to her.
“Shhh, Er…Eric…”, she gurgles out at me. She tries to move but needs my help to look at me. “I…I..need…” She swallows.
“Sookie, please, you are in such pain.” I say as the blood red tears fall down my face. I can feel what she is feeling through the bond and it is practically debilitating.
She shakes her head. “I…I..need..to..tell..you.” She says softly. “I…I love..I love you.” She says. “I always loved you.” She touches my face. “I should have stayed with you the first night at Fangtasia. So, so many things would be different.” She says. “I shouldn’t have said I was Bill’s.” She tries to swallow again. “I should…should…have followed my heart to you. Please..please tell me you forgive me?”
I pull her close. “I shouldn’t have believed you. Sookie, I love you. I have never loved anyone but you. Please, don’t leave…I…I can’t.” I look at her eyes. “I forgive you, if you forgive me. I should have told you that the moment I remembered our time together, the moment I entered your home tonight. I should have fought harder for you from the start. I love you. Please, Sookie, you can’t leave…” I say to her between my tears. “My precious love,” I whisper to her. “You are my heart and soul. I cannot survive without you.”
But all my pleas can’t stop her breathing from getting shallower. I hear her heart slowing and I see her light darkening. Without a whimper or a scream, My Sookie, she is gone.