Pre Edit Count – 2,456 Words
Song I listened to for this chapter: Boondocks by Little Big Town
She smiles. “Mr. Northman, will you please come in?” And they laugh at the reminder of the first time she had invited him in.
He sasses back at her, “For passionate primal sex or for protection?” He leers down at his beloved, enjoying that they have these memories, and can laugh about them.
The two of them stare at each other, until Eric finally leans forward and kisses her chastely. And leaning back just enough to stare into her eyes, he expresses to her, “I love you, Sookie Stackhouse.” His voice is deep, but low in volume. Not wanting another to ruin this moment that he fully admits to her his feelings face to face.
She smiles at him, her eyes bright, “Well that is a good thing, since I love you too, Eric Northman.” She puts her hand on his face and he turns to kiss it. Never looking away from her.
And at that second, everything was perfect.
Their moment of peace ends when they hear an elderly voice ask, “Now Sookie, did I raise you to wrap yourself around a man that you have not even introduced to me?” The voice holds censure that even Eric can hear clearly.
Eric’s fangs ache to drop when he feels the stab of pain that his Sookie feels at the words, but she doesn’t move from him. He looks down in her face, and his eyes tell her what she needed to know from him. He is here for her, and no matter what her Gran says to them, he will be here afterwards.
At the same time, she can see the questions in his eyes. He will be here for her, but will she still be here for him? She realizes that her pushing him away in their previous life has left this supremely confident vampire with doubts, causing her to acknowledge that only she can fix this.
This moment becomes a defining moment for her and she tells them both, “No, but you didn’t raise me to be a slave to others either, which is what you are wanting.” Her eyes never leave Eric’s and her eyebrow raises as if asking him, ‘Does that make it plain enough?’.
Adele’s hand raises to her chest and she staggers back. She didn’t expect that comment from her. and actually says, “Sookie! What do you think you are saying?” Her eyes are wide, and she is sincerely shocked – almost to the point of having a heart attack.
Sookie looks deeply into her Eric’s eyes and truly sees the man she fell in love with, sees what he had asked her to see that night in Bill’s mansion. She smiles at him, takes his hand, and turns to her Gran. “I know what the contract says, and I know what Warlow wants from me. Slavery. He will turn me and have me at his side for the rest of eternity. I will bear his faepire spawn. There is no honor in a deal that sells me into a life like that.” She is short and to the point. Trying to tell her Gran nicely didn’t work, so now she is being blunt. She is not sure why Gran is being so stubborn about this point, but then family honor has always been a huge deal to her. She has spoken of it enough times for Sookie to know that.
Eric’s eyes blaze as he hears more about this so-called contract. He had not known about this, and had wondered why Warlow would be so taken with his Sookie. This is why the two of them need to talk. They have the chemistry, they have the love, now they need the more in-depth connections, the ones that allow them to know everything about each other.
He is beginning to understand why Sookie has been miserable today. If this is what she is dealing with, then he is happy Godric is coming. He may keep this from an all-out fight. No one is going to hurt his Sookie anymore, she has already suffered more than enough for several people.
Sookie tugs Eric towards Gran, and introduces the two formally. “Gran, this is Eric Northman. Eric, this is my Gran, Adele Stackhouse.” She is not nervous, not when she has dealt with so much more. She has decided that Eric is worth it. So, even if her Gran rejects him, she will still be his.
Adele stares at the young man in front of her, who she suspects changed her Sookie into this woman who is not who she raised. No, the woman she raised would not be rebelling against her now. It makes Adele take a more hard-hearted, contemptuous attitude with this vampire. Sookie needs to follow her direction, obviously she cannot be trusted to fall in love with someone worthy of her.
Sookie’s hand tightens on Eric’s when she hears that. Eric’s face relaxes into the look he gives new vampires who challenge him to impress him – or the one Sookie calls his poker face.
The pain he feels from his Bonded is not to be had. He has felt her in pain many times, but knowing that this woman, whom his Beloved loves as he loves Godric, is causing this heartache is not to be tolerated. In his head, Eric plans how to take his Sookie to his home tonight. He cannot leave her here to continue listening to the filth spewing out of this woman’s mouth and mind. It may all be done politely, but nothing hurts as much as a parent scolding a child who admires them – especially in Sookie’s situation, where she finds the woman alive after suffering her death once.
Adele straightens up as Eric walks up beside Sookie, her hand held firmly in his. The look on his face tells her that he is here to stay. ‘I’ll be the judge of that!’
Sookie’s jaw tightens. She heard it clearly and decides that it is time to be explicit. “Gran, Eric is here to help me explain what has happened. But no matter if you wish to listen or not, I am his.”
Eric’s eyes blaze with that statement, and his mind screams, “Mine!” He holds himself straighter, every part of him screaming for him to protect what is his. This tiny woman next to him is, and always will be, his.
Sookie’s lips curve up slightly at the tips as she feels his response to her comment. She didn’t know what that meant back then, but standing here, right now, beside him, she can feel the pleasure and possessiveness coming from Eric – and it is all good.
Shaking her head, Adele gives in to her manners to allow them all to sit on the porch. She will not allow this vampire into her house. To do so would give a signal to Sookie that she approves. Right now, she sees this situation with Warlow as nothing more than an arranged marriage. While not normal, it is not unheard of. Sookie needs to step up to the role she is being called to fill. Family honor dictates for it. And, Sookie doesn’t need to be associated with someone who obviously has her acting against the ways Adele has brought her up. Yes, this Eric needs to leave her Sookie alone.
She looks to Sookie, who sits on the swing, leaning against Eric who is sitting behind her. He has one arm around her waist, and they hold hands in her lap. His other arm is laying along the back of the swing. Everything about their posture tells her that they are together. Normally she would be giddy about this, but based on what Sookie informed her regarding the last timeline, she is cheating with this man.
Sookie finally has enough. “I am not cheating! Gran! How can you believe any of it without all of it? Do you truly think so little of me?”
This is the Sookie Eric likes to refer to as ‘Fairy Sookie’. He cannot help the smile that ghosts his face as he sees the woman he loves being herself.
Adele flinches, unused to Sookie reading her mind. Since she built her shields, it has been a long standing rule of Sookie’s to not read Adele’s mind. There have been mistakes, but there is no question that this time it was done on purpose.
Sookie looks at her and tells her frankly, “Life changed after you died. I learned to use my telepathy to be better able to guard myself against the world. I have been almost raped, betrayed, beaten almost to death, actually raped, almost drained to death, shot, almost killed multiple times, and so much more. All because your other granddaughter couldn’t stop telling others about me. Right now, there is another vampire who will belittle me, rape me, drain me, almost get me killed multiple times, and finally betrays everything I went through for him. And you approved of him. Eric saved me most of those times or was responsible for me being saved. That Warlow you feel obliged to? He will do worse. Gran, he is a vampire that can walk in the sun. There will be no escaping from him. He will use me as his whore.” She states it all as bluntly as she can, hoping that this will make her Gran go back to the woman she had wished to meet Eric.
Eric is growling by the time this is recited, incensed that all this happened to her. He didn’t know some of it, shit, he didn’t know of a lot of it! He really wants to know about when Bill raped her, and he hopes she will allow him to punish the cretin for his sins against her. This Bill may have not done all that to her, but he would if he could. Eric will make sure she doesn’t suffer this time, and one of the ones who made her suffer big time was William Compton.
“Good Heavens! Sookie…” Adele stares at her granddaughter in shock, and though her brain is acknowledging what she is being told, she can’t get rid of the idea that Eric is the wrong person for her. He is obviously encouraging her being stubborn when Adele just wants her to be cared for by someone.
Hearing all this from Gran, Sookie shakes her head. Gran just won’t understand! “And when I told you, in a not so plain way, you still wanted to give me to Warlow. All you can think of is the family honor and that this is not worse than an arranged marriage. It is much worse. This is not a name passed down like you think; it is the same individual.” She is squeezing Eric’s hand tightly, controlling herself. This hurts badly. Her Gran is the one person she had always thought that, if she had been here this entire time, she would have been the one supporting her 100%. Instead, she is denying her a chance at happiness. Why? Eric is so much better than Bill and she accepted Bill easily!
Eric interrupts. “Mrs. Stackhouse, Sookie is telling you nothing but the truth. Warlow was banished from the earthly realm. Sookie’s own great grandfather, the father of your husband, was the one responsible. No one knew why, but we all feared his return. I can tell you the situation was only kept under control because of your granddaughter’s sacrifice. I didn’t understand why she did so, but she was willing to give up her life to honor an agreement made before both of you were born to save the vampires she knew. Is this truly what you wish for her?” He stares at her, making sure she understands the immensity of the sacrifice Sookie had made. Knulla! He didn’t fully understand it, and that is one of the things he will find out.
Adele cannot help the spite that rises up. “And what do you wish from her? Knowing that she can bear children and walk in the sunlight? What are you doing with her? Dallying with her? If you plan to turn her, are you not killing her?” She demands of the vampire in front of her, unaware that only her granddaughter’s love for her is saving her life.
Eric fights the urge to drop fang but cannot help the growl. “I will give your granddaughter what she wants. If she wishes to live her life out, I will be by her side until the day she gives her last breath. Then I will follow her the next morning to our forever. If she wishes to remain on this plane longer, I will work to give her that. If she wishes to stay by my side until the end, then I will give her that. But it is whatever she wants, not something she is forced to do. I know that when I found him, Warlow was going to turn your granddaughter. So, how is your precious Warlow better than me?” He is growling, and his fangs have dropped just enough to show but are not fully extended. His eyes are dark, and he pulls Sookie closer to him. There is no doubt he will do anything to protect this woman against the family who is purposely hurting her now.
A voice from the dark comes to them. “At this time, I think everyone needs to take some time and space to think.” The voice is accented, but it is clear that there is authority in that voice, enough to control thousands if need be.
Upon hearing the voice that she had really only known for a night, Sookie leaps up. “Godric!” She cannot explain how much better she feels knowing that he is alive. She is soon out on the lawn and hugging him, holding him as close as she can, relief flooding through her.
Godric is surprised, but when he wraps his arms around her, a warm glow surrounds them. Eric is standing right outside the two of them a second later, but upon feeling nothing from either of them signaling distress, he just hovers near his Bonded and Maker.
Sookie and Godric, however, are shocked as they both watch everything that has happened per Sookie’s view of the previous timeline. Godric watches as she cries for him as he greets the sun, how his death had upset his Child, how his Child had suffered for the loss. And how she also suffered while watching Eric almost self-destruct.
Godric gasps when he sees this, then reaches out and grabs Eric by his shoulder to bring him into the fold. The three of them glow to even Adele’s sight now as they all see each other’s past. Everything streams in their heads, leaving nothing out, but there is no way for even the vampires to assimilate that much knowledge.
After a while the glow fades, and Sookie sags in Godric’s arms. He catches her, and with a wondrous look on his face, he kisses her forehead and hands her to Eric. He looks at Eric, then smiles at him. “Seems I left too soon. I don’t think I will leave this time.” The smile is a gentle one, full of the wonder that he has been granted.
Hearing this, Eric’s whole being relaxes as he nuzzles into his Bonded. “I will be relieved.” He is worried, and wanting to make sure Sookie is ok, but he also cannot help the pure joy in seeing his Maker, whom he had last seen alive on the top of the hotel in Dallas. Then he had to watch as he was killed in front of him by Lillith.
Godric can’t help but grin. He nods to Sookie then says, “Take her to your home. I will talk to her grandmother, then I will join you. We have plenty to talk about. There is some information you need to be aware of. It is why you are bonded even now.” He looks down tenderly at Sookie, the grin on his face softer. Then, remembering why she is upset right now, he hardens his features.
Eric looks interested, but after looking down at Sookie, he bows to his Maker. “I will enjoy the knowledge. I will see you soon, Master.” He smiles at Godric, then moves with his Sookie to his car and, after depositing her safely in the seat with her seatbelt on, he blurs to his side of the car and is gone.
Godric smiles as he watches as the two leave. Life is going to be much more interesting. Much, much more interesting.
Adele watches them all with her mouth wide open. She manages to shut it before Eric and Sookie leave, but she is instead watching the young man walk up to her with a look on his face that would have warned her granddaughter that hell was about to descend.
Godric looks over the woman who means so much to Sookie. He smiles, resolved to try to fix what he can. Not for her, but for Sookie. If it weren’t for Sookie, he would not care. This woman has done so much to Sookie that Godric fears it will take both Eric and himself a long time to fix.
He bows his head to the older woman, and introduces himself. “My name is Godric. I am Eric’s Maker. I think there has been a misunderstanding. I am hoping to correct this before a grave injustice is done. May I sit?” He stands there waiting, knowing from Sookie’s memories that this relative is into manners.
She nods, watching him intently. She is not sure what has happened, but Sookie’s reaction to this young man is not a normal one for her. No, Sookie often rejects touching others. And how did he get here?
He has a small smile on his face as he sits down and looks at the older woman. He finally offers, “I think the problem that is you are not understanding what is happening?” He lifts his eyebrow at her. He really wants to get back to Eric’s home and talk with the two of them, but he needs to deal with this mess first.
Thinking over what has happened, Adele pauses, then nods. She will entertain him – it would be rude not to. “Sookie comes down the stairs and she is not the same person I had wished a good night to the night before.” Simple, to the point, and maybe this young man will leave her alone now so she that can work on finding that contract.
Nodding his head, Godric admits to her, “This would be a problem. One I understand, waking up to my Eric the same way. The biggest difference is that I could feel the difference in my Child. Then of course, when I arrived, I had a shock when I hugged this woman who came running up to me.” He has an impish grin on his face, but quickly smooths it out.
Replacing that grin is a gentle smile as Godric informs her, “To be blunt, madam, Sookie is not human. She is not only part Fae, but she is ‘other’, also. And that ‘other’ answers a lot of questions. Warlow wanted her and hoped to have her as a small child to raise so he could have her power to himself. That alone should tell you something. Sookie is where she is meant to be. With Eric. Eric has waited thousands of years for her. He just was not aware of waiting for her so long. I am not sure what that ‘other’ is, but I will be working to find out.” He makes a note of it in his head, since any information on what Sookie is can only help Godric and Eric keep her safe.
Adele stares at him before asking, “How is this so different from an arranged marriage? And how do you know Warlow is this ancient vampire that wanted Sookie as you said?” She stares at him hard, wanting someone to see her point of view. Something is bothering her about this, but when she tries to look too closely, she only remembers being raised to believe that family honor is everything. You do what is needed to honor any past agreements that your family has made.
He smiles at her, refusing to lower himself to arguing with her, and gives her the facts related to her questions. “Because Warlow found out that he could have a chance at her, according to his Maker. As soon as she told him of this chance, he killed her. He has killed many for this chance to have Sookie. I have fought him personally many times to keep him from his prey. I kept him from killing Eric several times. If you continue down this route, you will not just lose Sookie, you will lose the chance to know who she really is. She grew up here. You instilled into her a love of her surroundings. I suspect that as much as my Child will love to give her the world on a platter, she will love to hear the rain on the tin roof and think fondly of nights and days on this porch. She probably is used to hearing about poker games on Saturday night, and and Sundays she likely goes to church. You raised her with those beliefs.” He sighs, he has fought Warlow, and the information he was given by his Maker is making more sense. He always wondered what connection Warlow had to Eric and Godric, and now he knows. He was protecting those that meant the most to him.
She stares at him then Adele suddenly asks, “Why did you glow when she hugged you?” That has been bugging her and making her wonder. She has never seen anything like it.
He shakes his head. “That is something between the three of us. What you need to decide is what role you wish to play in your granddaughter’s life. I suggest that you think on that. It will make a difference on how the future goes. Now, if you don’t mind, I would like to protect Sookie and make sure that no one can get the information from you, nor gain access to your home, without you knowing it.” This is something he finds important with Compton being around. He can smell him, but his need to get back to Eric and Sookie is stronger.
She frowns, then sighs. “I suppose that would be a good idea. But I am not su-“
Godric has already captured her eyes, and he smiles. “You truly have no idea what you are up against do you, Adele? You will think it over tonight, and make your decision free from outside influence. And once made, your will cannot be influenced by me nor any other outside influence. You can only change your mind through your free will. No others can glamour you.” He adds a few other instructions, including rescinding all invitations into the home.
With that, Godric escorts her to the door. Once she is inside, she is still dazed, and he wishes her a good night. Then he leaves in a rush to meet Sookie. He wonders why she hadn’t felt like ‘home’ to him when they met before since that is what she is to both himself and Eric: home.
Final Count: 3,942 words
Fairfarren ~ Wendy