Pre Edit Count – 3,371 Words
Song I listened to for this chapter: Hey Soul Sister by Train
Godric just shakes his head. Neither of them can truly understand that both he and Eric have lived a very long time. With a long life comes a great many belongings, and both of them believe in safety. They switch out homes often, and Pam loves to redecorate for them. Nudging his mate, he tells her, “Go look. You don’t have to choose anything right now. Act like you are in a showroom without any pushy salesmen. Just make mention to me or Eric what you like, and we will remember it for you.” And they will also remember any details to help her with any decorating she wishes to do. He has a feeling that they will be visiting paint stores soon, too, since she has mentioned how she hates the white.
Taking a deep breath, Bella does as he asks. Telling him as they start, “I have a feeling I am going to be shopped out by the end of the night.”
Godric chuckles. “This is only the beginning, a thaisce. We have much more to do, but take your time. We are in no hurry.”
And with that, the foursome work their way through the warehouse, soon joking and laughing as they walk among priceless artifacts that Bella has no idea that were brought out of hiding specifically for her to look at tonight. Tomorrow they will be shipped back to the safe climate-controlled storage facilities where they had previously been hidden.
After the warehouse, the three head back to the house. Bella cuddles into Godric as she listens to the talk around her, more than content being with him, being held in his arms.
She thinks back to just a few days ago when she had worried about how Edward and the rest of his family acted oddly around her. She had worried that Edward and Alice would be upset by her ruining her party, which she hadn’t wanted in the first place. She had worried about her father, if he was eating right, if he had clean clothes for the following week as she cleaned the house. She had even worried about how she was going to get the money for gas and food.
Now, she had just spent who knew how much money on clothing, then had been taken to a warehouse that had, according to her Mate, maybe a percent of what he owned for her to pick through with the promise to show her even more tomorrow for the rest of the house. He had also said that they needed to shop for things for the kitchen. Eric had even mentioned that he will also be paying attention to that since he wanted his home to be ready for her.
She frowns as she thinks over what Eric said, and finally asks, “Eric?”
He glances over at her, “Yes?” His eyebrow arches up as he continues driving to their home.
Looking over from Godric’s arms, no idea how she appeared all enclosed in his Maker’s arms, she asks, “Umm, if I am going to be changed soon, why are you worrying about kitchen stuff?” She couldn’t figure out a better way to put it, so she just laid it out there.
Both men’s jaws tighten as they register her thoughts. Paul is watching them, his eyebrow raised as he wonders why they seem so pissed because of the question. He too is questioning why they are spending money on it. Changing her is the only answer he knew to her infection by the Cold Ones, and it seemed to be the only way Godric won’t kill himself if she dies. His people didn’t like the Cold Ones, but he admired his new leaders and wanted neither to die because of something they could easily change.
Eric pulls his fangs back in and answers her, his dark eyes on the road. “Just because you will be changing, doesn’t mean that there will not be a reason for you to be in Shreveport before then. Also your Guardian will need the kitchen.” And he hopes against hope she can visit before she needs to be turned. Godric and Eric both want her to be able to do all she wants to do as a human before then. They really want it to happen on her terms, and not because of the Cold Ones.
Thinking on it, Bella nods. That makes sense to her, and is something she will have to remember. Paul eats…a lot. Then she asks the next question in her head, “Why do you guys call Paul my Guardian?” The information she has bubbling up doesn’t make sense, so she is hoping they will fill in the details that she is not understanding.
Godric laughs as he feels her confusion and her wanting to know. “That is my fault, a thaisce. Alcide and his family have been named Guardians to our line, and are often the ones that take care of guarding our day rest as well as performing other duties. Paul has accepted the position as your Guardian. For now, he will be guarding you as you are with us. But he will be working with Alcide to learn the position and will be in charge of your security as well.”
Glancing at Eric she asks, “And who guards Eric?” This is what confuses her. If Alcide guards Godric because of his place, and Paul is to be hers because of her position as not only Godric’s Mate, but the sister of the Second, who guards Eric?
Eric gruffly answers, “No one.” He didn’t want one. He cannot stand to have a reminder of how short their lives are.
She looks at him and raises an eyebrow, “And why do you not have a Guardian?”
Eric sighs, knowing through their bond she will not let it go. “For so long I have been Godric’s child, and only accepted Guardians if Godric’s present one is fine. I trained up Alcide. But other than being Godric’s child, there has been no real reason for me to have one. I am careful with my resting places, and there was nothing to gain unless they wanted my position as Sherriff. Godric has a standing order that if someone challenges me for it, and I truly think there is a chance I may not win, I have to give up my position. Now this is something that no one outside of this car, including Alcide, knows.”
He glances at Bella then the mirror to Paul. Then he tells her, “I also don’t like the reminder of the mortality of someone who guards me. I feel that if they are the ones who put their lives on the line for me, then I should know them. It hurts when they pass.”
Godric rumbles the other part of the reason he has never insisted on Eric having a Guardian. “Eric just got promoted to the position I should have had him in all this time. He is formally my Second. His decisions carry weight against all but the two of us. And as your brother, as my Child, he has a lot of say within our Bloodline. As soon as we can get another of the tribe or find another who we trust enough to guard him, we will. We also will be working on getting the houses of Louisiana and Texas in line. Texas will be easy and in fact you will be meeting Andrew tomorrow. He will be working with me as he always has in getting everything ready.” He cannot hide his smile as he remembers Andrew.
Eric snorts. “And as he has always wanted to give you the Kingdom you deserved, Godric.” He grins at how uncomfortable Godric looks with the statement. But it is the truth. Godric has long deserved his own Kingdom, and the world will be a much better place now that he is a King in it.
Paul is confused. “I don’t understand this Bloodline thing. Alcide mentioned that I will probably be brought into it. What did he mean?” He did not get the whole Bloodline thing since Alcide told him that until he became one, he needed to talk to Godric and Eric for any more information.
Godric chuckles and nods to the house in front of them as they drive through the gates. “We will discuss it more inside.” It is not something he wants to risk anyone not of the Bloodline knowing. It may be general information among vampires, but they all jealously guarded such things like it was a dragon’s hoard.
With that the foursome is quiet as Eric pulls out and is at Godric’s door with his hand raised to assist his sister out of the vehicle. They soon enter the house.
The living room is so sparsely furnished that Bella wrinkles her nose at it. Godric laughs and guides her to an overstuffed chair and pulls her to sit with him. He knows how much she hates the sparsely furnished decor, as he feels her dislike through the bond. That is why he is making his Mate’s comfort in their nest his first priority.
Eric and Paul sit on the couch, both relaxing as they watch the couple in front of them. Eric is slightly envious of the closeness of his lillasyster and his Maker, but he is content for the most part. He basks in their feelings for each other. Bella is beginning to love Godric, almost as much as he loves her. Some of that is the bond, but a lot of it is due to them being soul mates. When you find your other half, your soul knows it.
Godric takes her hand in his as he gathers his thoughts. His mind is busy a maintaining watch over his Mate’s pain level, and he cocks an eyebrow as he realizes that she is feeling less pain. He looks at Eric and his son looks back at him with an innocent expression.
Shaking his head, but sending his appreciation to him, he looks to Paul. The large man, unlike Sam, is fully dressed. He also carries himself with a sense of watchfulness, as though he is always noticing the area around him. Godric nods as he looks over his mate’s Guardian. He would be happier with a Vampire, but during the day, that is not possible. He brings his mind back to the question Paul asked in the car.
“The Bloodline. This is a conversation you never repeat to another.” His stare is steady, making sure the shifter understands that he is serious.
Paul nods, “The same as the oath ceremony?” That was one for the books, and he will never tell anyone about it, nor about what Sam was told.
Eric shakes his head, “Not quite that sacred. That is probably the most intense oath taking I have ever heard of. But this ranks pretty high on the list.” He knows that the moment ranks high in his memory as something sacred, even more than being turned or really anything in his life.
Godric nods his head. “The Bloodline is easy, but complicated. It starts with me, it ends with me. I am the Bloodline. Everything traces back to me, and now Bella. She, as my Mate, is my equal in everything. As soon as the Mating Bond was initiated, she had every right to the Bloodline that I do. She probably does not understand it completely, and it is something I will need to teach her. But since once she is my child she will feel it more then, it makes no sense to teach her something she will actively work to reach when, unfortunately, she will be part of it within a month.” He wishes it could be longer for his little Mate, and he knows that the both of them, Eric and himself, will do everything to stretch out the time for her.
Paul jumps on that, “I thought you would want her to be your child as soon as you could.” He does not understand this part; why not make sure your mate is at your side?
Eric answers him, “Godric wishes Bella to turn when she wishes. If he had his way, he would have actively put off the mating and the bonding until she asked for it. He wanted to allow her to learn about him and to let him romance her. He wanted it to be a love connection in every way.” And Eric can admire him for that. He doesn’t know how he would handle meeting his mate and not touching her to finalize the mating. To hold off, and just date her, but never holding her hand, to help her out of the door, to never escort her with his hand touching her.
Bella smiles at her Mate. “And it is going to be with the more I learn about him each day. For me this is better since I do not question how he feels for me nor do I doubt that I am good enough. He never lets up on the love he sends to me. And Eric also seems to sense when I start doubting myself and the two of them gang up on me.” For her, this was perfect. They needed to have this bond. After how Edward had trampled all over her heart and how her own family used her, she needed to be reassured all the time. Luckily, neither male was upset with her; they were upset at what caused her to be like this. They are infinitely more patient that she would be.
Shaking his head Paul questions it. “But how? You met days ago?” He knows it supposedly happens to imprints, but it really doesn’t make sense. How would you fall in love with someone so fast?
Seeing that he is trying to understand, Eric tells him, “Mating is instinct. It is so rare for our kind that it is legend. It may also be the reason that it is so easy for Mating to be initiated.” He wished he could explain it better, but it is simply that – a mating instinct. Godric and Bella fell in love in first sight.
Shaking his head, Paul just doesn’t understand. He didn’t when Sam showed him, nor did he really understand it now with another species doing the same thing. How can you know you love someone without really knowing them?
Godric tells him, after kissing Bella’s hand, “I just explained this to Bella. Think of the millions of people on the earth now. And then think of the trillions of people that have been. Your mate could be any of those people. There is no pull, nothing to help you unless you are physically close. Even then, Bella’s scent called to me, but if I had not had the windows down, I would have never caught it. The chances of us finding our mates are so rare that it is truly a miracle I found Bella.” He smiles down at her, “It’s why I call her a thaisce, my treasure.” And he thanks his Gods every day for her. She is his gift, and he will live all the millenniums to come happily by her side.
Eric nods. “Godric is lucky, but then, so am I. I cannot explain how I knew the minute we saw each other that she was to be my sister. However, we both were told by our Patron that it is so for both Godric and me.” He grins. “In fact, mien lillasyster, you have given Godric and me a great gift.” He grins, his eyes twinkling mischievously. He looks for a second like the college boy he might have been in this time and age.
She arches her eyebrow at him, “Oh?” She is inwardly grinning at his face, and the…fun? through the bond.
Godric is grinning. “We had a visit today by your Patron, and the result of that visit allowed us both to see something we have not seen for thousands of years. We both thank you!” He is thrilled – this is something that she will share with them, and he can’t wait to see her in the sunlight.
Bella stares at them. “The sun? Are you kidding me? You got to see the sun for the first time and you couldn’t wait for me to watch it?”
Paul watches both of them carefully, having been told by Alcide how important it is to not ever expose either one of them to sunlight because of their age and how quickly it will burn them. Literally.
Eric is grinning like a kid. “It was wondrous, Bella. We both walked outside, and it didn’t burn us, we felt no pull, nothing. It was like when I was human. The sun!” He can’t control his glee. He too wishes to play with his sister in the sun.
Regarding at both of them, Bella frowns. “Why do I have the feeling you intentionally didn’t wait for me in case it went wrong….”
Godric and Eric’s emotions make her leap up. “That’s it! You were worried about it not working, so you decided not to wait for me in case it burned you! Why the hell? What were you… Argh!”
With that she walked out of the room, pure anger pouring down the bonds as Godric and Eric stare after her in shock. Paul starts laughing at their faces. “I think it is safe to say you guys pissed her off.” He can understand her position, especially just after what Godric had told them about how rare it is to find their mates.
Godric is soon gone after his mate, to try to redeem himself in some way in her eyes, and Eric is left sitting there. Paul waives his hand in front of the vampire’s face.
Blinking back to himself, he says, “She is really mad.” He is shocked. He thought she would be happy for them both, and enjoy the fact that there is another way that they cannot be hurt. Instead…she very angry.
Paul is still laughing. “Yeah, I would be to.”
Arching his eyebrow, Eric asks, “Why? I thought she would be happy to not have to worry about the risk of us being eliminated by the sun.” He really can’t understand why she is so mad that their bond is actually burning him with her anger.
Still chuckling, Paul tells him, “Because you risked yourself. Why did you not want her there?”
“So she wouldn’t stress out. A couple drinks of blood would have healed us and she wouldn’t have known.” Eric is shaking his head. An extremely brief exposure would not really have hurt them, but they both knew she would have gone nuts if they had burned at all. To them, however, it would have been as nothing.
Shaking his head, Paul asks, “And what if these enemies of yours somehow picked today to be prowling about and saw you two outside? And before you could get under cover, they yanked you outside? The Mate that you just told me, that you told her, is so rare to find, is gone, and her new brother is gone, too, just like that? When she had given up everything to be here?” He lifts an eyebrow back at the elder vampire, waiting for him to get it.
Eric opens his mouth and then shuts it. “She would have been devastated.”
Paul nods. “You named me her Guardian. To me that involves more than just guarding her body. Like you, I am beginning to see her like a sister. But unlike you, I haven’t been removed from the idea of it by thousands of years. You two need to think of her. I don’t doubt you have already set her up for life. From what I have seen, she doesn’t want any of that. She only wants the company. Think of that before you risk your lives again.” His voice is harsh, but his sentiment is exactly what Eric wants from someone guarding his sister.
Eric nods as he cocks his head and looks down to where he can sense her. “For now, I think I will let Godric deal with her. I will make my apologies after him.” He also has to think of a way to get back in her good graces. He doesn’t think that giving her his credit card would work like it would with Pam.
Paul nods. “It is best. And flowers, Eric. Flowers help. Even if she is a sister.” He can see the other man trying to think of something, anything, to give her.
The two nod at each other. Then Eric begins explaining more of the Bloodline to him, knowing that with this new Guardian, it will be a well reasoned decision. It is one that he will be happy endorsing to his Maker.
Bella somehow finds her way back to the bedroom and flings herself on the bed. She cannot believe how immature those two are!! They risked their very lives!! Do they not understand what they mean to her? Do they not know how devastated she would have been to learn that they were gone…just like that?
Godric stops and looks at his Mate on the bed. He can feel how very upset she is. He reaches out to her in their Bond as he moves to her side. He does not understand why she is this mad about something that to him, while a big deal, is also relatively minor.
Stiffening as she feels him, she grits her teeth. “Why?” Why would he risk himself? Did he not truly love her?
His hand on her back, his purr coming to sooth his little mate, Godric asks, “Why what, a ghra?” He does not understand this. She is just so mad, he cannot comprehend it, but he needs to fix this.
Looking up at him, she asks, “Why did you risk yourself? Do I mean that little?”
Frowning at her, “You mean everything to me, a thaisce. Why do you doubt this?” Why would she think that?
She snorts at him and moves away. “If I meant everything, then why did you not wait for me? Why did you risk yourself? Do you really think I would not miss you if something happened? Godric, tell me how this should make me feel?”
Godric just stares at her. Finally, he slowly answers, “I was thinking you would be happy, a ghra. I did not think of anything but the fact that if this is true, then I can spend more of our time together. That I would be able to be by your side at all times. That I can see you in the sun. And then I thought of the pain I would feel if this were not true. How I carefully did not think about these missed times, the missed visions of seeing you in the sun as you belong. That if this were true, then there would be no difference for you from being as you are now, to being like me except your diet and an aversion to silver. I apologize that these thoughts did not occur to me about how you would miss not being able to see it.” He is trying to show her that he did think of her; he never wanted to feel disappointment from her. But feeling this anger? Worse…far, far, worse.
She huffs and closes her eyes, attempting to calm herself as she tries to explain this to him. She starts, “Godric, I was happy when you told me, and yes I admit I wished that I hadn’t missed that chance to see you guys in the sun for the first time. But to hear that you didn’t want me there because you were worried that it was not 100% safe, but that went ahead and did it anyway, that hurts more. You were so uncaring about your own safety that it may have left me not only without my other half, but also may have ripped my brother away at the same time? All that tells me is that you don’t take me as seriously as I take you.” She opens her eyes and stares at him, trying to get him to understand her.
Godric stands up and stares down at her. “Both of us could move fast enough to remove ourselves if anything happened. There was no chance of anything but a minor burn happening.” Why is she not understanding this? They would not risk themselves like she is implying. Did she not trust them?
“Then why not wait?”
He answers her, “Because I didn’t want you to witness that! I didn’t want you to smell it, to see me, to feel it as it crosses the bonds between us! I never want you to have to suffer any of that! Nor did I want your hopes raised on something that could have been nothing. I want nothing but your happiness, for you to be pain free. I will do anything to make sure you are safe, loved and not hurt! Even if it may take a slight risk on my part.” He is earnest, and not yelling, but only because that is not Godric. Godric does not yell. But this is the first time in his long life, that he is coming close to it.
She stands up and staring into his eyes she demands, “And why would you think I would want anything less for you? This is not a time to have you being cavalier about your safety when we have no idea what is going on with the Cold Ones, with you planning to take a throne. I have said nothing, trusting that you would keep yourself and Eric as safe as possible. But this? This makes me worry more. It makes me worry that you not taking your security, your safety, seriously enough.” She is fierce, standing up to her Mate, demanding him to listen to her.
Staring down at his mate, Godric ponders her thoughts. He reaches up and slowly puts his hand on her neck, cupping her face. “My precious thaisce. I…did not think. I wanted to surprise you, and thought on the positive.” He sighs. “This is hard. I did not think on these other issues. I felt like a child again, giddy with the excitement of what it could mean. The benefits for our relationship.” He looks away from her as his shoulder sag.
“I’m sorry. But you also need to realize that I could have had Eric and me out of the light and into the safety of the house within seconds. I did think of precautions.” He is always thinking of them. Did she not understand that these thoughts go on at all times in the back of his head?
Leaning into his hand, Bella looks at him. “And if someone had been out there trying to get in, someone with silver? What then?” She just wants him to understand her position. And to make her feel better.
He leans forward and rests his forehead on hers as he pulls her closer. “Then there might have been a chance. But, a ghra, we did look, and we did make sure that we could not be captured as easily together. Eric and I have been taking care of ourselves for so long that such things are ingrained within us now, they are second nature. But I have allowed that I was wrong, how I should be even more careful with my safety, and with you at risk. Cannot you allow how I would not risk myself needlessly? That I would not take my safety in stride as I normally would?” He stares down into her eyes, trying to compel her to understand with just the force of his will.
A tear slips out of her eye as she whispers, “You told me how you were ready to give up when we met. Godric, that scares me. How do I know that you won’t give up again? That you take yourself seriously enough to not risk yourself? How can I give you my heart unless I know you won’t tear it out again?” Though this is too late, he has her heart if she is honest, but she is craving the assurance from him.
His own eyes fill as he can feel her emotions. He pulls her closer, telling her, “That was before you came into my life, Bella. You changed me, you made me feel alive. I will fight for you, kill for you, but I will not die for you. I will live for you, show you that I have the strength to survive by your side, loving and enjoying life. I promise I will think more before I react, but I need you to allow for the fact that I do think of this continuously. Can you do this?” He asks her, pleads with her to allow him this.
A sob comes out as she nods. “Y-yes.” She gives into his need for her to agree with him.
He holds her closer, and without her realizing it, he floats them to back to the bed holding her as she cries into his chest. He tells her softly, “I told you I would never have you regret giving me a chance. I still am striving to this. This is as new to me as it is to you, a ghra. Be patient with me, and I will give you everything.”
She nods her head, and he holds her as she cries, promising himself that he will think twice before acting. His Mate is new to his life, and he is new to her being in his life. They will have disagreements in the future, but he resolves to listen as he just did, as he suspects that none have in the past.
Final count: 5,034 words.